The Ontario Government is fast tracking Bill 23, an omnibus bill to “build more homes faster” by dispensing with “red tape”, the very regulations that protect our environment and provide basic rights to individual landowners and community organizations. This very complex bill would make sweeping changes to ten existing Ontario Acts (Conservation Authorities Act; Ontario Land Tribunal Act, 2021; Planning Act, and seven others).
It’s a gift to housing developers, the mineral extraction industry and utilities, all the while having a very destructive effect on the natural environment around us and limiting our democratic rights.
Ontario Nature, the umbrella organization of which MVFN is a member, has an online information page about Bill 23 as well as a petition against it. The petition will take only a few minutes to sign (you do not have to create one yourself!!) and won’t ask for a donation. Please take the time to sign it if you care about nature. Here’s the link:
For those who wish to submit written comments to the government agencies directly, here are the links. Note the very short timelines, the first one being TODAY, November 17 at 7:00 p.m.!
The Standing Committee on Heritage, Infrastructure and Cultural Policy is taking written submissions for Bill 23 as a whole, with a submission deadline of Thursday, November 17th at 7:00 p.m.
There are two Environmental Registry of Ontario proposals mentioned on the Ontario Nature page that are open for comments until next Thursday, November 24th:
Changes to the Conservation Authorities Act:
Changes to the Planning Act:
For further reading, here’s what the Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority (MVCA) has to say:
Comments from Nick Stowe, a respected local environmental planner: