November 8, 2018

To keep you informed, here is an update of what has happened of municipal interest.

Province Changes Property Tax Treatment of Royal Canadian Legion Facilities
On November 5th, the provincial government announced it will take steps to exempt Royal Canadian Legion facilities from property tax starting in 2019.

A majority of Ontario municipal governments already provide property tax exemptions or rebates to Legion facilities.  AMO expects the legislation needed to implement this change will be tabled very shortly.  Municipal budget planning for 2019 should account for this change. 
 
AMO Contact:  Matthew Wilson, Senior Advisor, mwilson@amo.on.ca, 416.971.9856 ext. 323.

Provincial Government Consultation on a New Climate Change Strategy for Ontario
The Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks is consulting on Ontario residents’ priorities for a new climate change action strategy.  The deadline for this initial consultation is Friday, November 16th.  This strategy will be released for focused consultations later this year to replace the previous climate plan that prioritized cap and trade revenue to invest in a low carbon economy.

For this consultation and to assist members now, AMO has prepared a general discussion paper, Municipal Governments in Ontario and Climate Action, to outline municipal climate change action needs and areas of concern.  The paper also provides a framework for municipal governments to review and analyze the draft strategy when released later this year.  AMO will review the draft strategy, as well, and advise members of any areas of municipal impact and concern that emerge.

We understand that the new plan will prioritize climate adaptation and resilience for residents and communities.  It may also set new greenhouse gas (GHG) reductions targets and establish technological investment incentives.  Depending on the scope and the policy objectives in the new strategy, it is expected that municipal governments could be impacted to some degree.

AMO Contact:  Craig Reid, Senior Advisor, creid@amo.on.ca, 416.971.9856 ext. 334.

Upcoming Provincial Activities of Note
Look for our AMO update after the Ontario Economic Statement is released on Thursday, November 15th.  This statement is expected to give Ontarians a fuller understanding of the provincial government’s fiscal approach.

Minister Lisa MacLeod has announced that she will be releasing the Province’s plan for social assistance reform on November 22nd.  AMO will provide a members’ update shortly after its release.