In Fall 2013, the Ontario Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing (MMAH) led a consultation process surrounding its land use planning and appeal system, asking stakeholders across the province for feedback on how to improve the system to:
– Achieve more predictability, transparency and accountability in the planning/appeal process and reduce costs;
– Support greater municipal leadership in resolving issues and making local land use planning decisions;
– Better engage citizens in the local planning process; and
– Protect long-term public interests, particularly through better alignment of land use planning and infrastructure decisions.
The Ontario Farmland Trust participated in this consultation and prepared several observations, concerns and recommendations related to farmland protection and focusing on:
– Municipal planning conformity with provincial land use policy;
– Transparency and accountability in planning and appeal processes; and
– Public engagement in planning processes.