Notification Window

Key legislative developments at Queen’s Park

Some may have significant effects on profession

As the legislature at Queen’s Park heads home for the summer, there has been a mad dash to introduce various pieces of legislation in the lead-up to the 2018 provincial election. The OAA is currently reviewing (all introduced within the last two weeks):

  • Bill 139, Building Better Communities and Conserving Watersheds Act (OMB reform legislation)
  • Bill 142, Construction Lien Amendment Act
  • Bill 148, Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act (Amending Employment Standards Act and Labour Relations Act)
  • Bill 122, Registered Professional Planners Act 


The OAA is also reviewing the final report of the Changing Workplaces Review and the Proposed municipal asset management planning regulation.

The OAA will be carefully reviewing the legislation and determining priorities and opportunities over the summer. Comments are invited from members and can be submitted to Sara Trotta, Policy Analyst.

Bill 139, Building Better Communities and Conserving Watersheds Act (OMB reform legislation) 

The legislation proposes to overhaul the province’s land use planning appeal system replacing the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) with a new Local Planning Appeal Tribunal which will give far greater deference to communities and municipal decisions. The OAA has historically opposed efforts to erode the OMB instead advocating for the government to focus on improving the appeal system. The legislation has currently passed first reading and will be revisited later in the fall.

The government release can be found here

Bill 142, Construction Lien Amendment Act 

The legislation proposes to modernize the lien and holdback process including a new focus on prompt payment. For nearly 15 years, the OAA has pushed for the mandatory release of statutory holdback after each phase of architectural work (design and contract administration). Early indications suggested this recommendation was not adopted and a few other issues remain, so the OAA expects to have a fight ahead of us. The OAA also supports the concept of prompt payment and will review how it has been proposed and what effects it may have on the profession. Some of the past correspondences related to the Construction Lien Act (CLA) and Prompt Payment can be found in the Government Relations Portal. The legislation has currently passed first reading and will be revisited later in the fall.

The government release can be found here

Bill 148, Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act / Changing Workplaces Review 

This act responds to the interim and final reports from the Special Advisors on the Changing Workplaces Review. The OAA expects professional exemptions (entitlements to minimum wage, hours of work, rest periods, overtime, etc.) related to architecture to be reviewed later in the year. The final report of the Changing Workplaces Review also proposes to allow architects (and a few other professions) the right to unionize. The legislation has currently passed second reading and has been referred to the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs for further study with hearings expected to begin this summer.

The government release can be found here.

 Bill 122, Registered Professional Planners Act 

This act has been presented by the Ontario Professional Planners Institute as “professional regulation” which will “make“ the profession and its members accountable to the government and people of Ontario – rather than  ‘private legislation,’ which simply outlines the rights of a private professional association” (OPPI Frequently Asked Questions). While OPPI has currently restricted the use of the term Registered Professional Planner/RPP, this legislation proposes to additionally restrict the term “professional planner” to members of the OPPI. The OAA is supportive of the OPPI’s efforts to modernize their legislation but has raised a number of significant concerns around the legislation as drafted and expects to be further involved if the legislation moves further through the legislature. The legislation has currently passed second reading and has been referred to the Standing Committee on Regulations and Private Bills for further study.

 Proposed municipal asset management planning regulation

 The Infrastructure for Jobs and Prosperity Act, 2015, was proclaimed on May 1, 2016 and includes an authority for the province to regulate municipal asset management planning. This regulation defines “Infrastructure Assets” and “Core Infrastructure Assets” and sets out periods for which municipalities must development plans to manage their infrastructure needs.