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Ontarios Big City Mayors Statement on the Cutting Red Tape to Build More Homes Act, 2024

Apr 10, 2024Housing, Infrastructure, Top Stories

April 10, 2024

The province’s announcement today of the Cutting Red Tape to Build More Homes Act, 2024, includes several initiatives that will cut red tape and speed up government processes that will, in turn, speed up the build of 1.5 million new homes in Ontario by 2031. 

Ontario’s Big City Mayors (BCM) are committed to working with the province and doing our part to get more homes built in our municipalities. The government has listened to our suggestions for how we can better partner together to reach our goals including:

  • creating a use it or lose it system that allows municipalities to ensure projects that are ready to go will get the necessary infrastructure
  • eliminating the phase in on development charges, allowing us to collect the necessary funds for community infrastructure
  • eliminating the refund of fees for applications that require additional time
  • rolling out a central and standard data collection system to more municipalities
  • assisting with standard modular homes
  • streamlining the building code and providing additional flexibility for construction methods
  • taking steps toward streamlining ministry and municipal approvals

OBCM municipalities look forward to working with the province on the details of these new initiatives, along with the $825 million Housing-Enabling Water Systems Fund and the new $1 Billion Municipal Infrastructure Fund announced last month, so we can meet our shared housing goals. 

We appreciate Minister Calandra collaborating with municipalities and other partners in the creation of the Cutting Red Tape to Build More Homes Act, 2024. During these consultations we also made it clear that development charge exemptions will continue to make a significant impact on municipalities. We have always operated on a “growth pays for growth” model and by moving away from that, any financial burden shifts to the property tax base. We continue to call on the province to sit down with municipalities for a municipal-fiscal review, which includes how they will address their commitment to keeping us whole. 

“The Minister was clear that he recognizes the struggles municipalities have faced in building homes, and that a one-size-fits-all approach is not the answer. The removal of barriers and streamlining of approvals processes will go a long way to getting shovels in the ground as we work to address the housing crisis in our communities,” said Marianne Meed Ward, Mayor of Burlington and Chair of OBCM. “We look forward to continuing to work with the province where challenges remain, and to ensure that as they develop new processes and initiatives to support housing development, cities will be properly funded to limit the burden on the existing property tax base.” 

About Ontario’s Big City Mayors

Ontario’s Big City Mayors (OBCM) includes mayors of 29 single and lower-tier cities with a population of 100,000 or more, who collectively represent nearly 70 percent of Ontario’s population. OBCM advocates for issues and policies important to Ontario’s largest cities.

Media Contacts

Mayor Marianne Meed Ward, Chair               Michelle Baker, Executive Director                                        

905-335-7777                                                     647-308-6602

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