Ontario Ministries set priorities (Sept.2014)

On September 25, 2014, for the first time, the Premier of Ontario openly released “mandate letters” for each Provincial Ministry, providing a window on the direction of the current government as part of efforts to be the “most open government in Canada.”

While the objectives are mostly at the strategic level, the mandates effectively outline the marching orders for the current term, while providing a list of objectives that Ontarians can measure against.

Some mandates with particular significance to waterfront property owners include:

  • Anti-SLAPP Legislation in the works: the Attorney General has been tasked with the re-introduction of legislation to protect the public from lawsuits intended to discourage public participation. Note: FOCA has been speaking up about SLAPPs since 2009.
  • the rebranded Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) has been mandated to lead the development of a new long term climate change strategy for Ontario. This, alongside the release of the Ontario Climate Change Update 2014 (pdf; 42 pages).
  • re-introducing a strengthened Great Lakes Protection Act (MOECC)
  • re-introducing the Invasive Species Act (Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry)
  • review of the province’s emergency management systems (Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services) – including the protection of public safety and adapting to the growing impacts of climate change
  • implementing the new (“fairer, more transparent”) Ontario Provincial Police billing model (Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services)
  • reviewing Disaster Response (Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing) – including a review of the Ontario Disaster Relief Assistance Program.
  • improvements to the Aggregate Resources Act – to address the recommendations of the Standing Committee on the Review of the Aggregate Resources Act.

Read the full mandate letters, here: http://www.ontario.ca/government/mandate-letters.

Michelle LewinOntario Ministries set priorities (Sept.2014)