Ontario Government Releases Proposed Regulations for Inclusionary Zoning

Last week the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing (MMAH) released a proposal for inclusionary zoning regulations under the Planning Act. Inclusionary zoning is a policy tool that requires affordable units be included in new residential developments. This regulatory proposal is part (Schedule 4) of Bill 204, the Promoting Affordable Housing Act, which was introduced and received first reading on May 18th, 2016. If passed, the regulations would establish a framework to allow municipalities to pass inclusionary zoning by-laws. The regulations would also provide regulatory authority on related matters to the Minister of MMAH.

Key elements of the proposed framework include:

  • allowing municipalities to determine where and how inclusionary zoning applies through official plan policies and zoning by-laws, subject to the requirements of the proposed legislation and potential regulations
  • prohibiting appeals to the Ontario Municipal Board from municipal inclusionary zoning official plan policies and zoning by-laws, except appeals made by the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing
  • disallowing municipalities to accept money in lieu of inclusionary zoning units or allow the units to be built on off-site lands
  • requiring municipalities to establish a procedure for ensuring that inclusionary zoning units remain affordable over time
  • requiring owners of inclusionary zoning units to enter into agreements with the municipality, which may be registered against the land and can be enforced against subsequent owners to keep the unit affordable
  • restricting municipalities from using section 37 (density bonusing) in addition to inclusionary zoning requirements, except in circumstances outlined by regulations

Interested stakeholders have until August 16, 2016 to provide comments using the MMAH Feedback Form, Environmental Bill of Rights Registry, by email to inclusionaryzoning@ontario.ca, or write to:
Provincial Planning Policy Branch
Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing
777 Bay Street, 13th Floor,
Toronto ON M5G 2E5

For more:
Proposed regulations under the Planning Act
Environmental Registry Regulation Proposal Notice
Inclusionary Zoning Consultation Discussion Guide
Planning Act
Bill 204 – proposed Promoting Affordable Housing Act, 2016
Backgrounder Proposed Amendments to Promote Affordable Housing

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