OHBA Activity Summary – June 2016

OHBA Activity Summary header

JUNE 2016

 

DATES TO NOTE:

June 8th:  OHBA Board of Directors Meeting

June 8th: OHBA MOECC Workshop

June 22nd: OHBA Awards of Distinction Submissions website closes

September 18 – 20th: OHBA Annual Conference and Awards – Collingwood

 

INCLUSIONARY ZONING
On May 18th the provincial government tabled legislation, Promoting Affordable Housing Act, 2016 (Bill 204), that will allow municipalities to force the inclusion of government defined affordable housing units in new residential projects. The province subsequently posted a proposed regulation under the Planning Act that would set the framework for Inclusionary Zoning as well as a consultation discussion guide. OHBA responded to the announcement with a media release, “Inclusionary Zoning Will Only Work through Partnerships.” The legislation follows an announcement in March by the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing which updated the Long-Term Affordable Housing Strategy. OHBA responded to the announcement with the media release articulating that “Housing is Never Free – New Neighbours will pay the Bill for Inclusionary Zoning.” In advance of the legislation being introduced, OHBA and BILD created a Statement of Intent on Affordable Housing & Inclusionary Zoning. The Statement of Intent outlines our principles for creating legislation to permit Inclusionary Zoning. OHBA will be reviewing the legislation and regulatory package against our statement of intent in an effort to shape how a partnership model can make Inclusionary Zoning work. Comments are due to the Ministry by August 16th and OHBA will be preparing a submission – we are seeking feedback from members – please send comments to OHBA Director of Policy Mike Collins-Williams. OHBA understands that on June 6th the Minister will make a statement on the legislation and the opposition will have a chance to respond.

 

GREENBELT AND GROWTH PLAN PROPOSED AMENDMENTS
In May the Provincial government announced proposed amendments to the four Plans that were part of the Co-ordinated Review. OHBA, along with the Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD) and the Hamilton-Halton Home Builders’ Association (HHHBA), responded to the announcement with a media release noting that the Provincial government’s proposed amendments would mean less housing choice and higher prices for home buyers.  A few key proposed amendments from the announcement included: Increasing intensification targets to a minimum of 60 per cent of all new residential development occurring annually in the built-up area (currently 40 per cent); increasing the designated greenfield area density target in the Growth Plan to a minimum of 80 residents and jobs per hectare (currently 50); establishing stronger environmental, agricultural and planning criteria in the Growth Plan for settlement area boundary expansions; requiring the province, in collaboration with municipalities, to identify and map an agricultural system for the entire Greater Golden Horseshoe (GGH); identifying a natural heritage system in the GGH outside the Greenbelt Area; and, four parcels of land identified by the City of Hamilton and Niagara Region would be added to the Greenbelt.  OHBA participated extensively in the public consultation process since the Co-ordinated Review and Panel was announced last year. OHBA attended all of the town hall meetings across the GGH and made a submission with a comprehensive as part of the first phase of the Co-ordinated Review. OHBA also supported two third-party reports to inform the consultation – “Review and Strategic Assessment of the Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe” by Deloitte and “Improving the Growth Plan: A Commentary” with areas of proposed action by former Assistant Deputy Minister of the Ontario Growth Secretariat Brad Graham and economist Tom McCormack.  The government has proposed changes to the four Plans captured in the Co-ordinated Review and are looking for feedback, the Plans include: Proposed Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, 2016; Proposed Greenbelt Plan (2016); Proposed Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan (2016); and, Proposed Niagara Escarpment Plan, 2016. Please submit your comments, questions and concerns to OHBA Policy Director Mike Collin-Williams to be included in an association response. The government will also be hosting Public Open Houses, click here for scheduled locations. Lastly there are a number of full-day technical briefings that are invitation only from the Ministry – if you are interested in attending please contact OHBA Director of Policy, Michael Collins-Williams.

 

ONTARIO PROPOSES NEW DRAFT ELECTORAL FINANCING RULES
On May 17th, the province introduced the Election Finances Statute Law Amendment Act (Bill 201), which includes measures that would, if passed, modernize the province’s election financing rules. The proposed changes include: Banning donations and loan guarantees by corporations and unions, capping the amount of money third parties can spend on political advertising, introducing strict anti-collusion measures, placing new limits on the amount of money individuals can donate and creating a per-vote allowance for political parties based on the number of votes they receive. OHBA responded with a media release that “OHBA Supports Ban on Political Donations from Corporations and Unions”.

 

MANDATORY SAFETY AWARENESS TRAINING FOR ALL CONSTRUCTION WORKERS PROPOSED
The Ministry of Labour is proposing a regulation that would mandate a minimum level of construction safety awareness training for all workers in construction. The proposal would require all workers to complete a mandatory one-day classroom training program from a Ministry of Labour approved training provider. Alternatively larger construction companies with 20 or more workers with joint health and safety committees would be able to develop their own training based on the subjects set out in regulation. The proposal includes a two-year transition period to give employers time to ensure their workers have completed the training. Under the proposal a worker would not be required to take refresher training in future years if they took the training through a Ministry of Labour approved training provider. For more information visit the Ministry of Labour. Please forward any comments or questions to Stephen Hamilton.

 

OHBA AWARDS OF DISTINCTION AND CONFERENCE WEBSITES NOW OPEN!
The OHBA 2016 Awards of Distinction website is now open for submissions! Are you the best of the best in Ontario? Showcase your talent and submit your projects! The award winners will be announced at OHBA’s Annual Conference taking place September 18-20 at the Blue Mountain Resort in Collingwood. Make sure to get your submissions in by June 22nd! This year’s conference will be taking place in Collingwood and promises to be jam-packed with speakers, activities and important industry insights! Registration is now open – visit http://conference.ohba.ca to find out more!

 

CONSERVATION AUTHORITIES ACT REVIEW
Last year, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry initiated a review of the Conservation Authorities Act by posting a discussion paper to the Environmental Bill of Rights Registry. OHBA and a number of our local associations and members participated in consultations specific to our industry including an OHBA/BILD hosted session at our office last fall. OHBA also submitted recommendations in a submission to the Ministry last fall. In response to the public and stakeholder comments received, the Ministry has identified five priorities for updating the Act: Strengthen oversight and accountability in decision-making; increase clarity and consistency in roles and responsibilities, processes and requirements; improve collaboration and engagement among all parties involved in resource management; modernize funding mechanisms to support conservation authority operations; and, enhance flexibility for the province to update the Conservation Authorities Act in the future. A new consultation document “Conserving Our Future” has been posted to the Environmental Registry (012-7583).The document represents the next stage of the review and was created to help generate additional discussion related to the priorities. The posting will be open for comment for 120 days until September
9, 2016. OHBA is seeking feedback from members on the consultation document – please direct any comments back to Mike Collins-Williams. In addition to the posting, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry will host five facilitated regional multi-stakeholder engagement sessions on this document: Friday June 3, 2016: Eastern Ontario, Ottawa — Tuesday June 7, 2016: Northwestern Ontario, Thunder Bay — Thursday June 9, 2016: Southwestern Ontario, London — Monday June 13, 2016: Central Ontario, Newmarket — Wednesday June 15, 2016: Northeastern Ontario, Sudbury.

If you are interested in attending one of these sessions, please send an RSVP to mnrwaterpolicy@ontario.ca. OHBA representative (Suzanne Mammel – HHHBA
Executive Officer) and BILD representative (Gary Gregoris – Mattamy Homes) were also appointed by the Ministry to a technical stakeholders working group that provided advice to the government regarding the CA Review in late May.
TARION WARRANTY ALERT ON MARBLE, TILE, TERRAZZO, FRAMING AND DRYWALL
In response to requests submitted by OHBA, RESCON and BILD, Tarion has issued a Warranty Alert on Marble, Tile, Terrazzo, Framing and Drywall. Tarion confirms that the marble, tile, terrazzo, framing and drywall strikes constitute an Industry Extraordinary Situation which may entitle builders to an extension of the builder repair period. For details on the process that builders must follow if they are impacted by a strike and require an extension on the builder repair period or closing and/or possession transfer, please refer to Tarion’s Warranty Alert.  Builders are expected to communicate with their customers as much as possible and provide homeowners with their best reasonable estimate of how long the delay will be. Extensions to builder repair periods will be granted by Tarion on a case-by-case basis, where Tarion determines that an extension is justified based on the strikes impacting your projects. If you believe your ability to complete work or repairs will be delayed as a result of the strikes and require an extension to a builder repair period, you must contact Tarion to request an extension as soon as possible, before the builder repair period expires. To determine case-by-case eligibility, please contact the following Tarion staff that have been specifically assigned to work with you during the trade strikes:
Freehold and condo unit inquiries:
Trudy Napoleone – Manager, Warranty Services
416.229.3844, ext. 3202, trudy.napoleone@tarion.com
Common element inquiries:
Bonnie Douglas – Manager, Warranty Services
416.229.3844, ext. 3183, bonnie.douglas@tarion.com

 

FIRE SAFETY DURING CONSTRUCTION GUIDELINE OF MID-RISE WOOD BUILDINGS
A new Provincial Guideline to enhance fire safety within and around mid-rise wood buildings while they are under construction is now available. The Guideline was developed by the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing (MMAH), the Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management (OFMEM) and the Ministry of Labour (MOL). This Guideline draws on the advice and experience of stakeholders in the building, design, fire protection, manufacturing, municipal enforcement and insurance sectors, as well as on documents and standards in other leading jurisdictions. Thank you to our members who provided valuable feedback towards the development of this Guideline.  This Guideline complements the amendments to the Ontario Building Code which came into effect in January 2015 to allow construction of mid-rise (five and six storey) wood-frame buildings. The Guideline includes best practices and considerations for builders and others involved in the construction and protection of these buildings, but does not constitute a Regulation. The Guideline addresses eleven key areas of best practice, for example: Fire Safety Planning, Hot Work Protocol, Control of Ignition Sources and Protection of Adjacent Properties. For more information, please go to the Ministry’s website.

 

MOECC – LOW IMPACT DEVELOPMENT MANUAL
The Ministry of the Environment & Climate Change (MOECC) has initiated the development of a Low-Impact Development (LID) Stormwater Management Guidance Manual. As part of this undertaking, a stakeholders group has been established with the industry being represented by BILD member Steve Schaefer of SCS Consulting Group. The stakeholders group is currently reviewing two documents: Recommended Minimum Runoff Control Targets which establishes the target rainfall event for on-site control and a chapter on model selection framework for an approach to analyze the effects of LID measure implementation on the local surface water and groundwater systems. These documents would apply to all new development. A brief overview of the Draft volume control recommendations:

 The Recommended Volume Control Target (RVCT) is based on the volume of stormwater to be infiltrated, evapo-transpirated or re-used with no discharge to sewer or surface waters.
 The RVCT is based on the regionally specific 90th percentile event (26-29mm for the GTA). This target is considered a “minimum” and “shall” be superseded by more stringent volume targets developed though other site or watershed specific studies.
 Any site that results in or reconstructs more than 0.1ha of impervious area must meet the following performance goal: SWM runoff volumes will be controlled and the post construction runoff volume shall be retained on site from the runoff from the regionally specific 90th percentile rainfall event from all surfaces on the entire site.
 Flexible Treatment Options for Sites with Restrictions are defined for sites with the following restrictions (note that soil type is not included): Shallow bedrock, high groundwater, swelling clays or unstable sub-soils, contaminated soils, high-risk activity sites, and prohibitions or restrictions per the
approved Source Protection Plans.  OHBA is requesting that members requesting a copy of the LID documents contact OHBA and direct any comments, concerns, questions to both OHBA Director
of Policy Mike Collins-Williams and stakeholder group member and principal of SCS Consulting Group Steve Schaefer.