Bill 62 2012
An Act to provide for the legislative oversight of regulations
Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of the Province of Ontario, enacts as follows:
1. In this Act,
"consolidated regulation" means a regulation that is a consolidated law within the meaning of the Legislation Act, 2006; ("règlement codifié")
"filed" means filed with the Registrar of Regulations under Part III (Regulations) of the Legislation Act, 2006; ("déposé")
"Minister" means the member of the Executive Council to whom responsibility for the administration of this Act is assigned or transferred under the Executive Council Act; ("ministre")
"regulation" has the same meaning as in Part III of the Legislation Act, 2006. ("règlement")
2. (1) A regulation shall not be filed unless the requirements in this section have been met.
Regulations that affect business
(2) The Minister of Finance shall determine whether the regulation affects business.
(3) For the purposes of subsection (2), the regulation affects business if it,
(a) directly affects persons in the carrying on of business; or
(b) indirectly but significantly affects persons in the carrying on of business.
(4) If the Minister of Finance determines that the regulation affects business, he or she shall conduct a cost-benefit analysis of the regulation.
Legislative Assembly resolution
(5) If, as a result of the cost-benefit analysis conducted under subsection (4), the Minister of Finance determines that the regulation imposes a cost on persons in the carrying on of business or imposes a cost on government, the regulation shall not be filed unless,
(a) the regulation and the cost-benefit analysis are laid before the Legislative Assembly; and
(b) the Legislative Assembly, by resolution, approves the regulation.
(6) This section does not apply to a regulation if a Minister determines that the regulation,
(a) is needed to deal with an urgent situation;
(b) is needed only to clarify the intent or operation of an Act or a regulation; or
(c) is of a minor or technical nature.
3. (1) The Minister shall establish and maintain a registry of consolidated regulations in accordance with this section.
(2) The registry shall include the following:
1. A list of every consolidated regulation that is included on the e-Laws website within the meaning of the Legislation Act, 2006.
2. A detailed description of each consolidated regulation listed under paragraph 1.
3. A list of every regulation filed after January 1, 2013.
4. For every regulation listed under paragraph 3 for which a determination was made under subsection 2 (2), an indication of the results of the determination.
5. For every regulation listed under paragraph 3 for which a cost-benefit analysis was conducted under subsection 2 (4), a copy of the cost-benefit analysis.
Registry to be up to date, public
(3) The Minister shall keep the registry as up to date as reasonably possible and shall ensure that the registry is available and accessible to the public.
(4) On one of the first 30 days on which the Legislative Assembly sits in each calendar year, the Minister shall lay before the Assembly an annual report on the registry.
(5) The annual report shall include the following:
1. The contents of the registry required under paragraphs 1 and 2 of subsection (2), current to the end of the previous calendar year.
2. The contents of the registry required under paragraphs 3, 4 and 5 of subsection (2), for each regulation filed in the previous calendar year.
First annual report
(6) The first annual report shall be laid before the Assembly in 2014.
Auditor General's annual review
4. (1) Each year, the Auditor General shall review,
(a) the determinations made under subsection 2 (2) for regulations filed in the previous calendar year;
(b) the cost-benefit analyses conducted under subsection 2 (4) that were laid before the Legislative Assembly in the previous calendar year; and
(c) the determinations made under subsection 2 (6) for regulations filed in the previous calendar year.
(2) Each year, the Auditor General shall report his or her findings under subsection (1) to the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly and the Speaker shall promptly lay the report before the Assembly.
5. (1) Subject to subsection (2), this Act comes into force on January 1, 2013.
(2) Section 4 comes into force on January 1, 2014.
6. The short title of this Act is the Legislative Oversight of Regulations Act, 2012.
The Bill sets out a number of requirements that must be met before a regulation is filed. These include a review by the Minister of Finance to determine if a regulation affects business and a cost-benefit analysis if the Minister of Finance determines that a regulation affects business. If the cost-benefit analysis reveals that the regulation imposes a cost on persons carrying on business or on government, the regulation must be approved by resolution of the Legislative Assembly before it may be filed. The Bill provides for an exemption from these requirements in certain circumstances.
The Bill requires the Minister responsible for the administration of the Bill to establish a registry of regulations containing the determinations made and the cost-benefit analyses conducted by the Minister of Finance. The Minister is required to lay an annual report on the registry before the Legislative Assembly.
The Bill requires the Auditor General to review the determinations made and the cost-benefit analyses conducted by the Minister of Finance, as well as any determinations made exempting a regulation from those requirements, and to report his or her findings to the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly.