Author: Deborah

Toronto’s OMB suspension is rescinded, saying it was based on inaccurate information

Toronto’s OMB suspension is rescinded, saying it was based on inaccurate information

Toronto backtracks on return-to-office plans for city employees as Omicron spreads fears

Toronto’s chief administrative officer, Mary-Margaret McMahon, has asked city council to reverse its decision to extend a two-year suspension of new staff hires at the end of this year for the city’s departments of planning, housing, and economic development.

The decision sparked an uproar from the provincial government, which had threatened to cut Toronto’s annual $5.9-billion Ontario Municipal Board budget and impose a moratorium on planning approval in the city until the OMB restored staff hiring.

But now, Premier Dalton McGuinty has rescinded his threat, saying it was based on inaccurate information.

“My government has reviewed the OMB plan, and it is not in the best interests of the residents of Toronto for the OMB to impose a moratorium on planning approvals,” McGuinty told the Star. “Furthermore, Toronto has had and continues to have a robust OMB planning process, and it is in no way appropriate to halt or delay the planning hearings currently taking place, or to delay the approval process for large-scale developments.”

The OMB suspension was first imposed in May after the province ordered it to cut the municipality’s OMB budget, at a time when planning and economic development activity in the city was booming.

The suspension is due to end at the end of February this year, but McMahon’s request for a temporary stay from the province has been rejected.

Omicron has accused Toronto of breaking its promises to ensure the city’s plan for planning approval hearings remains sound and sustainable. It has also blamed the province for trying to block the council’s own oversight and that of the OMB.

“The provincial move is the province’s move and it’s a very public place for it to be decided, and that’s the kind of policy-making that people don’t want,” said Omicron chair Jack MacLaren.

City officials, in response, have

Leave a Comment