Ontario Municipal Board replaced
April 10, 2018
After years of complaints that it was too cozy with developers, the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) has been disbanded and replaced with a new entity, the Local Planning Appeals Tribunal (LPAT).
Residential developers, who have often complained that an onerous public hearing process delayed construction starts, may see some relief under the more streamlined approach of LPAT. However, municipal council will be given much more say in a project’s approval.
For example, under the former OMB, arguments from both sides would be considered and OMB would decide the best planning outcome – at times overruling the local municipal council.
Under the new regime, LPAT will answer a simple "yes or no" legal test: Does the proposal follow the city's official planning rules? If not, the matter will be sent back to municipal councils to issue another decision. LAPT will not make planning decisions.
It will take awhile for the new process to get up to speed.
If a complete application was submitted to the OMB before December 12, 2017 and an appeal is filed prior to proclamation on April 3, then the file will still be processed by the OMB. All other appeals will be processed by the LPAT.