person typing on a laptop

As part of its current review and update of Planning and Permitting policies, Cataraqui Conservation is asking for input from the general public, as well as representatives of stakeholder organizations.

This comprehensive review will include updating our Environmental Planning Policies, Guideline for Implementing Ontario Regulation 146/06, as well as the Service Delivery Procedures.

The update took into consideration the introduction of new information, studies, statutes, policies, and provincial technical guidelines which influence or provide the overarching policy framework for our development review role. These include:

  • Provincial Policy Statement (2020)
  • Waterfront Development Guidance for Eastern Lake Ontario and Upper St. Lawrence River (2019)
  • Draft Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change Low Impact Development Stormwater Management Guidance Manual (2017)
  • Policies of other Conservation Authorities

To connect with the public and stakeholders in the most efficient and effective way, the public consultation process will be electronically based. A webpage on the Cataraqui Conservation site has been set up for this purpose. Input is welcome from Sept. 14 through to Oct. 2, 2020. All comments, suggestions and anecdotes received will be collected by Cataraqui Conservation planning and permitting staff and considered by the Cataraqui Conservation Planning and Permitting Ad Hoc Committee and Full Authority Board prior to finalization of the policy update process.

Conservation Authorities such as Cataraqui Conservation were created by the Provincial Government beginning in the late 1950s with the mandate to develop and implement a comprehensive, watershed-based approach to preserving and conserving natural ecosystems, taking into account human activity, such as growth and development.

Authorities are to represent provincial interests in areas of flood mitigation and prevention, as well as other natural hazards by providing expert commentary and advice to municipalities. Conservation Authorities also have authority under Section 28 of the Conservation Authorities Act to regulate development and site alteration activities in certain areas through Ontario Regulation 148/06: Development Interference with Wetlands and Alterations to Shorelines Watercourses. The main purpose of Ontario Regulation 148/06 is to ensure that proposed changes (e.g. development and site alteration) to a property are not affected by natural hazards, such as flooding and erosion, and that the changes do not put people and/or other properties at greater risk from these hazards.

Cataraqui Conservation has a set of policy and procedure documents that staff use when reviewing Planning Act and Ontario Regulation 148/06 development applications. These documents are the subject of the current policy update.

Environmental Planning Policies, which were updated in 2015, act as Cataraqui Conservation’s guide to both individual landowner and municipal environmental planning matters, including providing input on Official Plans, Zoning By-laws, Development Permit By-laws as well as site-specific applications submitted to Cataraqui Conservation under the Planning Act and other provincial legislation.

Cataraqui Conservation’s Service Delivery Procedures for Ontario Regulation 148/06 provides guidance on the administrative procedures involved in implementing the regulation. Finally, Cataraqui Conservation’s Guidelines for Implementing Ontario Regulation 148/06 provides a comprehensive set of guidelines that enable staff to issue a permit under the regulation.

The ultimate purpose of Cataraqui Conservation’s role in planning and permitting is to protect people and property from natural hazards like flood and erosion, as well as preserving and enhancing the natural environment, particularly the complex and fragile ecosystems of wetlands, watercourses and shorelines.