Wednesday April 20 1994

Tuberate Heat Transfer Act, 1994, Bill Pr86, Mr Huget

Bob Huget, MPP

John Ruffilli, legal counsel, Tuberate Heat Transfer Ltd

Roger Lefebvre, representative, Alloy Fabricating

North Toronto Business and Professional Women's Club Act, 1994, Bill Pr104, Ms Poole

Dianne Poole, MPP

Paul Crum-Ewing, solicitor, North Toronto Business and Professional Women's Club

City of Hamilton Act, 1994, Bill Pr24, Mr Abel

Donald Abel, MPP

Lorne Farr, city solicitor, City of Hamilton

Brian Allick, manager, field inspections, City of Hamilton

County of Essex Act, 1994, Bill Pr103, Mr Hayes / County of Essex Local Municipalities Act, 1994,

Bill Pr108, Mr Hayes

Bruce Crozier, MPP

Gregory Stewart, solicitor, County of Essex

John Curran, county administrator, County of Essex


*Chair / Présidente: Haeck, Christel (St Catharines-Brock ND)

Vice-Chair / Vice-Présidente: MacKinnon, Ellen (Lambton ND)

*Eddy, Ron (Brant-Haldimand L)

Fletcher, Derek (Guelph ND)

*Hansen, Ron (Lincoln ND)

*Hayes, Pat (Essex-Kent ND)

Johnson, David (Don Mills PC)

*Jordan, Leo (Lanark-Renfrew PC)

*Mills, Gordon (Durham East/-Est ND)

*O'Neil, Hugh P. (Quinte L)

*Perruzza, Anthony (Downsview ND)

Ruprecht, Tony (Parkdale L)

*In attendance / présents

Substitutions present/ Membres remplaçants présents:

Abel, Donald (Wentworth North/-Nord ND) for Mrs MacKinnon

Crozier, Bruce (Essex South/-Sud L) for Mr Ruprecht

Hodgson, Chris (Victoria-Haliburton PC) for Mr David Johnson

Johnson, Paul R. (Prince Edward-Lennox-South Hastings/ Prince Edward-Lennox-Hastings-Sud ND)

for Mr Fletcher

Also taking part / Autres participants et participantes:

Hayes, Pat, parliamentary assistant to Minister of Municipal Affairs

Clerk / Greffière: Grannum, Tonia

Staff / Personnel: Klein, Susan A., legislative counsel

The committee met at 1004 in committee room 2.


Consideration of Bill Pr86, An Act to revive Tuberate Heat Transfer Ltd.

The Chair (Ms Christel Haeck): Our first piece of business is to call Bill Pr86, An Act to revive Tuberate Heat Transfer Ltd. Welcome to our sponsor, member Bob Huget. Say a few opening remarks and introduce the applicant, please.

Mr Bob Huget (Sarnia): Thank you very much, Madam Chair. Good morning to you and to members of the committee. I am pleased to sponsor Bill Pr86. Seated with me is John Ruffilli. He has a submission to make to the committee, and I'll turn it over to John.

Mr John Ruffilli: My name is John Ruffilli. I'm a lawyer from Sarnia and I represent the current shareholders of the company known as Tuberate Heat Transfer Ltd, Ralph Vander Linde and Mike Banovsky.

I appear before you today, requesting passage of the private member's bill reviving that corporation. This corporation came into being in 1973 by way of articles of incorporation. Since that time, it has performed pressure vessel and welding design and construction for the petrochemical industry in and around the city of Sarnia.

By the mid-1980s, the principals of the corporation, who had been George Visser, Bernard Bax and Arthur Wallace, had reduced the activity of the corporation due to the economic times, and in fact Mr Visser had become the sole shareholder of the corporation and was doing work primarily as a design consultant, actually within his own home.

Through an oversight on the part of Mr Visser, corporate returns were not filed with the provincial corporations tax branch, and on December 1, 1987, a notice of dissolution was sent to Mr Bax at the corporation's previous address. Unfortunately, the corporation was no longer at that address. Mr Visser was not aware of this error until 1990, and at that time, with the aid of his accountant, Mr Hazlitt, of Sarnia, he filed all of the missing corporate returns for the corporation. In July 1990 he, as I said, filed the requisite returns, and in correspondence with the Ministry of Revenue he actually requested the revival of the corporation. Unfortunately, he was not advised and did not seek the advice of a lawyer or his accountant that he actively had to make application by way of articles of revival. That was not done.

Subsequently, Mr Visser took on other shareholders as partners. They are the current shareholders, Mr Vander Linde and Mr Banovsky. They expanded from simply design consulting to actively designing and fabricating once again. Mr Vander Linde and Mr Banovsky, in December 1991, bought out Mr Visser's interest, paying fair market value at the time. As the five-year period has elapsed to allow for articles of revival to be filed, our only option was to apply for a revival by way of the private member's bill before you.

We have been made aware of an objection to the revival from a competing Sarnia corporation, Alloy Fabricating Ltd, based on what I understand to be what they perceive as unjust enrichment. I wish briefly to speak to that.

Firstly, the shareholders of the corporation purchased the shares, including all of the corporation's assets, in 1991 at fair market value. Secondly, the assets of the corporation, if it was dissolved, were owned by the shareholder, Mr Visser, including the goodwill, equipment and processes, and were bought in 1991 by the current shareholders. Therefore, it's my submission to you that no party is being unjustly enriched, as fair market value was paid to the person who had ownership of the corporation's assets. I do submit to you that in objecting to the revival, the competitor is taking an advantage to reduce local competition.

I submit to you that the revival of this corporation is done in good faith, by persons who have paid fair market value for the assets and for no improper purpose. Further, the reason for the default -- that is, the failure to file the corporate returns -- was remedied, as evidenced by the correspondence that I provided to you, and further by the affirmation of the federal and provincial tax departments more recently upon this application.

I have provided to you a copy of the notice of dissolution, which was addressed to Mr Bax at the corporation's previous address at Wellington Street, which never reached Mr Visser, unfortunately. I've provided you with a part of the share purchase agreement from December 1991 that shows the purchase for fair market value of the outstanding shares for $25,000 at the time. I have also provided to you a copy of a letter of July 1990 from Deloitte and Touche, providing copies of the mislaid corporate returns. Finally, I've provided to you, on the final page, a letter from Mr Visser in September 1990, addressed to the Ministry of Revenue, enclosing the tax returns and requesting that the charter be revived, which of course is not the role of the Ministry of Revenue. He should have taken it a step further and applied for articles of revival at the time.

I thank you for your attention in this matter. If there are any questions, I'd be pleased to answer.

The Chair: At this moment I think it would be appropriate to hear from the representative who is listed as an interested party. I call Mr Roger Lefebvre.


Mr Roger Lefebvre: My name is Roger Lefebvre and I represent Alloy Fabricating in these proceedings. We're a company that competes head to head with Tuberate for the same business in our community.

My only objection to the application here at this time of course is that the principals in Tuberate at the time are no longer principals of that company and the application is being made by two people who at one time worked for Alloy Fab. We're objecting to the fact that the original principals of Tuberate Ltd are not making the application. It's coming from two different owners altogether. That's basically the gist of my trying to prevent this from going through.

The Chair: I would ask if the parliamentary assistant has any comments to make regarding this application.

Mr Pat Hayes (Essex-Kent): Actually, it doesn't really affect Municipal Affairs. Therefore, we don't have any comments to make on this bill.

The Chair: Are there any questions?

Mr Ron Eddy (Brant-Haldimand): The question I'd like to ask is simply if -- I guess I'd call it an oversight that the company wasn't kept registered. If that hadn't happened, would everything have been in order that the company would have continued to be a registered company and would the new owners, who, I believe it was mentioned, bought it out -- it would have been in order for them indeed to have that name? It's a legal question.

The Chair: Possibly Mr Ruffilli could come forward. He might be able to answer your question.

Mr Ruffilli: If I'm reading your question correctly, but for the fact that Mr Visser omitted filing the returns for the 1986-87 period, then there is a chain of transition from the original incorporators in 1973 on through to the current owners. Each of the shareholders conveyed their interest in a valid manner for fair market value right up to the present owners.

Mr Eddy: I think you said that previously, but I just wanted it confirmed.

The Chair: Mr Hansen.

Mr Ron Hansen (Lincoln): No, my question's answered.

The Chair: Are there any further questions?

Mr Hugh O'Neil (Quinte): Just to be fair to the person who is objecting to it, I must say I don't really understand your objection or why you're really objecting to it or what you would like to see happen. Would you like to see this denied, and if so, why?

Mr Lefebvre: It was stated there was no unjust enrichment to be gained by the application for this particular bill here, but I believe there is.

Any time a company can establish itself in 1991 and be able to reap the benefits of saying it can date itself back to 1973, I don't know how you would phrase it, but it gives it an advantage in the marketplace because of the lengthy time it was in business. If they can say in fact they established themselves in 1973 as opposed to 1991, that gives them 21 years of working experience that they would have on a company such as ours that established itself in 1987 and is working right up until today.

So there is enrichment there, and there are other enrichments too on behalf of well procedures that were generated by the former company that they would be able to use and things like that. So "no unjust enrichment": I don't believe that statement is correctly stated. I can't agree with it at all.

Mr O'Neil: But the thing is that if these individuals did buy the company when they did and there was an oversight in just doing the registration, I can't see where there was any real intention to -- they bought it believing it was a company that had been registered.

Mr Lefebvre: If they did, the name was changed to Tuberate Heat Transfer Ltd, so I believe they did buy it knowing full well that the company was non-existent at the time. I don't know, I might be incorrect in this, but this is just how I perceive it.

Mr Ruffilli: If I could shed some light on that, the company was known as Tuberate Heat Transfer Ltd at the time of the acquisition and subsequent to that they filed articles of amendment to amend the company to a shorter name, Tuberate Ltd. I would accede to Mr Lefebvre's suggestion that there would be unjust enrichment if in fact, for example, the shareholders of record had voluntarily dissolved the corporation and then someone had come out of nowhere and said, "Let's attempt to revive a company and, without paying anything for it, acquire its goodwill and its processes." That's not the case in this instance. That's to me the differentiation.

The Chair: Are there any further questions? Seeing none, I would ask if members are ready to vote.

Shall sections 1 through 3 carry? Carried.

Shall the preamble carry? Carried.

Shall the title carry? Carried.

Shall the bill carry? Carried.

Shall I report the bill to the House? Agreed.

The bill passes. I want to thank both the applicant and our interested party for coming forward and making their views known. Thank you very much.


Consideration of Bill Pr104, An Act to revive North Toronto Business and Professional Women's Club.

The Chair: Good morning, Ms Poole. Make some opening remarks and introduce the applicant, please.

Ms Dianne Poole (Eglinton): I am pleased to be here this morning as sponsor of the bill, North Toronto Business and Professional Women's Club Act revival.

As often happens with volunteer organizations, they aren't aware of the legislative requirements in keeping the incorporation valid. In the case of North Toronto Business and Professional Women's Club, they did move their premises in 1982 and therefore the notices did not follow them and they did not give notice to the ministry that in fact they had moved the premises.

It is sheerly through oversight that the filings have not been made since 1982 and I might say that this club, of which I am a member, is a club that involves strong advocacy on behalf of women. They do fund-raising for the North York Women's Shelter and they support many worthy women's projects in the city of Toronto. I would be very appreciative if members would support this bill.

I would like to now introduce Paul Crum-Ewing, the solicitor for the applicant.

Mr Paul Crum-Ewing: All I can add is that the club is a member of the Canadian Federation of Business and Professional Women's Clubs and it is the only women's organization in all of Canada whose primary purpose is to advance the status of women. I would say that way back, I think in the 1930s, the federation had advocated equal pay and equal employment opportunities for men and women, so the club has a very strong tradition of furthering the cause of women. That's all I wish to add.


The Chair: Thank you, Mr Crum-Ewing. I would like to ask if there are any interested parties who wish to come forward at this point to speak to this bill. Seeing none, I will open questioning, and Mr Mills was first.

Mr Gordon Mills (Durham East): It's not a question but just a comment. It's Volunteer Week, and I'm going to support the revival of this.

Mr O'Neil: What year was the club founded?

Mr Crum-Ewing: The club was founded in 1957. The charter was granted in 1957.

Mr Hansen: Did you want to become a member there, Ron?

Mr O'Neil: You're not going to ask a question?

Mr Eddy: I was, but I better not. I wouldn't mind being guest speaker, but I don't think I qualify to be a member. I thank the sponsor for coming forward to sponsor this bill. As the sponsor is a member, I know she will undertake to see that this never happens again, so I do support the application.

Ms Poole: For life? I will do my best, Mr Eddy.

The Chair: I think you two can work this out in your own caucus. We don't want this to come to blows.

Mr O'Neil: I wasn't going to ask, and I likely shouldn't ask it, whether Mrs Poole was a founding member of the organization.

The Chair: I know she was far too young to be able to be a member in 1957.

Mr O'Neil: That's what I was thinking too.

Ms Poole: Yes, Mr O'Neil, as a mere child at the time, although I have always supported the women's movement strongly, I didn't get active quite that young.

Mr O'Neil: So it's on the record.

The Chair: I'd like to ask members if they are at this point prepared to vote on the bill. Yes. All right.

Mr Hayes: We don't object either.

The Chair: I'm sorry. Mr Hayes, did you have any remarks to make about this bill?

Mr Hayes: The Ministry of Municipal Affairs does not object to this bill because of the great job Mrs Poole has done in presenting it today.

Mr O'Neil: I'd use that quote in the future, too.

The Chair: Thank you, Mr Hayes, and let us get back into our appropriate voting procedure.

Shall sections 1 through 3 carry? Carried.

Shall the preamble carry? Carried.

Shall the title carry? Carried.

Shall the bill carry? Carried.

Shall I report the bill to the House? Agreed.

Thank you, Mr Crum-Ewing and Ms Poole.

Ms Poole: May I convey the gratitude of the North Toronto Business and Professional Women's Club to the members of the committee. Thank you.


Consideration of Bill Pr24, An Act respecting the City of Hamilton.

The Chair: If I could ask Mr Abel to join Mr Farr from the city of Hamilton, Mr Abel, perhaps you would make a few opening remarks and then introduce the applicants, please.

Mr Donald Abel (Wentworth North): On March 22 of this year I introduced for first reading Bill Pr24, An Act respecting the City of Hamilton, and I'm pleased to be here today on behalf of Brian Allick and Lorne Farr, who is the solicitor for the city of Hamilton. I believe Lorne has a presentation he'd like to present.

Mr Lorne Farr: Thank you, Madam Chair and members of the committee. To my left is Brian Allick, the manager of field services from the building department of the city of Hamilton.

This is an application by the city of Hamilton for special legislation to allow the city to make the offences under the zoning bylaw, the property standards bylaw, the interim control bylaw and the site plan control bylaw offences under those bylaws.

Before 1983, when the Planning Act was passed, the zoning offences were an offence under the bylaw. When the 1983 Planning Act was passed, those offences became offences under the Planning Act although the bylaws were allowed to be enacted under that act.

The Legislature, in December 1992, gave the city of London legislation, chapter Pr49, the same powers that the city of Hamilton is requesting tonight. There are precedents for allowing the municipality to have the fine structure in its own bylaw. As I said, the City of London Act allows the city of London to do the exact same thing that the city of Hamilton is asking for, and the Building Code Act, another provincial legislation, allows the municipality to collect the fine for prosecutions brought under the Building Code Act by that municipality. The city of Hamilton legislation is very similar to the same drafting as the City of London Act.

Those are my comments, Madam Chair.

The Chair: Thank you. I would ask if Mr Allick had any comments to make at this point.

Mr Brian Allick: I have nothing to add, Madam Chair, other than should this committee see fit to pass this bill, it will certainly assist in the costs to the municipality of enforcing its bylaws.

The Chair: Thank you, Mr Allick. I would ask if there are any other interested parties here this morning who wish to come forward. Seeing none, I would turn to Mr Hayes and ask if there are any comments on behalf of the Ministry of Municipal Affairs.

Mr Hayes: Before I make any comments, actually, I'd like to ask a question of you. How much revenue do you feel you are losing under the existing system without having this bill? Do you have any indication?

Mr Allick: Last year, the penalties awarded for contraventions of these particular bylaws were in the region of $8,000 for the city of Hamilton.

Mr Hayes: Those were the total fines?

Mr Allick: The total fines for this particular legislation that were levied for last year, sir.

Mr Hayes: Madam Chair, I just wanted to know that figure for the benefit of --

The Chair: No problem. I think we all found that illuminating.

Mr Hayes: Yes, thank you. Good. But the Ministry of Municipal Affairs does not object to this bill, and I understand that the Ministry of Finance hasn't really come out and objected to it and doesn't have representation here, so we are not objecting to this bill.

The Chair: Very good. I would open the floor to members. Mr Eddy.

Mr Eddy: I support the application and I would go so far as to hope that when a new Planning Act is presented, it's done in such a way that indeed all municipalities that operate -- that a building inspection department have the same authority. I think we should get that back where it is, and I would have been prepared to support it regardless of the amount of money that is collected because I think it offsets the cost of a building inspection department, a very important department in municipal governments. So I support it.

The Chair: Thank you, Mr Eddy. No further questions? I would ask then if members are ready to vote.

Shall sections 1 through 5 carry? Carried.

Shall the preamble carry? Carried.

Shall the title carry? Carried.

Shall the bill carry? Carried.

Shall I report the bill to the House? Agreed.

Thank you very much, gentlemen. The bill is passed.


Consideration of Bill Pr103, An Act respecting the County of Essex, and Bill Pr108, An Act respecting the county of Essex and the Local Municipalities in it.

The Chair: I want to thank Mr Crozier, who has taken on the task that Mr Hayes normally would have undertaken so Mr Hayes can fulfil his obligations up here and Mr Crozier can do a good deed from the far end of the room. Mr Crozier, if you would like to make some opening remarks and introduce the applicants, please.

Mr Bruce Crozier (Essex South): It is my pleasure to represent Mr Hayes in this circumstance. As a lifelong member of Essex county and a former mayor of Leamington in that county and now representing half of that county, it's my pleasure this morning to introduce to you John Curran, the administrator of the county, and Greg Stewart, the solicitor, here to make representation on these bills. They will introduce some others perhaps who are here with them as well.


The Chair: Is it Mr Stewart or Mr Curran who would like to go first?

Mr Gregory Stewart: I'll be addressing. My name is Gregory Stewart and I am the solicitor for the county of Essex. As indicated by Mr Crozier, to my immediate left is Mr John Curran, the administrator of the county of Essex. We have in attendance this morning also Mr William Varga, the warden of the county of Essex; Mr Lyle Miller, the chairman of the strategic strengthening study committee for the county of Essex; Mr Tony DiBartolomeo, the chairman of the council restructuring subcommittee for the county of Essex; and Mr Joe Cimer, who is on the planning staff for the county of Essex. Obviously, the contingent that we have here this morning indicates the importance that we place on this particular legislation.

By way of background, the county of Essex currently consists of 21 municipalities and each of those municipalities currently has two representatives on county council, obviously a reeve and a deputy reeve. In the mid-1980s, as you all know, there was a series of reports by the province having as their aim the strengthening and streamlining of county government and municipal government. The reports made a number of recommendations, among which were suggestions that the size of county councils be reduced, that the heads of local councils sit on county council and that consideration be given to the names of the members of municipalities.

The county of Essex, and this is a historical process, has for a number of years been involved in a process aimed towards implementing those goals. In 1991, there was established an office of deputy warden in the county and there was the establishment of an executive committee in order to begin the efforts to streamline the county government process.

In February 1992, the council established a strategic strengthening study committee to review operations of county government and local government, generally in line with the recommendations that had come forward from the province over a period of years. That work in that committee has been going on since February 1992 and is ongoing.

As part of that process, a county council restructuring subcommittee was struck, consisting of members of county council, three mayors and three former wardens, to study the structure of county council and to make recommendations to county council as to any changes in that structure. That subcommittee came forward with a series of recommendations earlier this year, and county council, on the basis of those recommendations, determined to proceed immediately to have those recommendations to change the structure of county council implemented in the form of private legislation.

You have before you two separate pieces of legislation and they have arisen from the fact that the mandate that came from county council was to reduce the size of county council to provide for the heads of all local councils to sit on county council and to change the names of the heads of council and the deputy heads of council from reeve and deputy reeve to mayor and deputy mayor.

We were advised, and quite rightly, that the prerogative in regard to the first two matters -- that is, the size of the council and the heads of the local councils sitting on county council -- was the prerogative of the county. The issue of the names was the prerogative of the local municipalities. So the material was divided up into two pieces of legislation in order to effect that.

The 21 municipalities were polled in regard to the second piece of legislation, that being Bill Pr108, to determine their support for the change of the names of the members of county council. This was done in consultation with both the office of legislative counsel and the Ministry of Municipal Affairs on the basis that the alternative would be to introduce 21 individual pieces of legislation to effect the same thing. So the county of Essex is acting as the agent of those various municipalities that are listed in the schedule to that particular piece of legislation.

The legislation that has as its goal changing the numbers on county council, Bill Pr103, or the County of Essex Act, you will see uses the terms "head" and "deputy head" of council and then defines within that act, or will in a series of amendments that I understand are going to be introduced today, what those positions will consist of and then relate the sitting of various numbers on county council to various populations within the county.

The second act deals exclusively with the names and provides for the heads of all councils to be called mayors and provides for a permissive right on the part of any municipality to elect a deputy mayor at any point and to give that mayor powers under the provisions of the Municipal Act. It also provides that if any municipality is entitled to a second member on county council -- and there would be three initially that would -- that second member on county council would be referred to as a deputy mayor.

All of these wishes and suggestions have been encompassed within the two pieces of legislation and, within the span of those two pieces of legislation, cover all that has been mandated and cover it within the respective jurisdictions of the various municipalities.

With regard to the County of Essex Act, there is the support by vote of the county of Essex, obviously, which is what is needed in regard to that piece of legislation. With regard to the other piece of legislation, there is on the draft before the committee today the indication of support of 18 of the 21 municipalities. Subsequent to this -- and the ministry has been advised of this and I understand appropriate measures will be taken today to deal with this -- the township of Colchester North has also withdrawn its opposition to that piece of legislation. So it will apply to 19 of the 21 municipalities.

Just for clarification, if you pass the County of Essex Act, it will affect all heads of council sitting on county council and will affect the numbers of county council. The second act will only affect those 19 municipalities which support it, and that is, the effect will be the change of name to mayor and deputy mayor in those particular municipalities.

I don't know whether this is the appropriate time to comment on it. I will, and if the Chair thinks it is not, I assume she'll rule me out of order. There is a letter that has been delivered by the town of Belle River this morning, and I wonder if I might comment on that for a minute.

The Chair: What I had thought appropriate to do was, at the point of raising the issue of interested parties, to make mention of this and then allow for comment. If the members are in agreement, I would then flag that at this moment and allow Mr Stewart to continue in his current vein. Any objections to that? Seeing none, all members have then been duly advised of this particular piece of correspondence, and if you would then continue.

Mr Stewart: I can comment on that correspondence.

The Chair: Yes, please.

Mr Stewart: Just for clarification, the town of Belle River delivered correspondence to you yesterday and in it they make five different comments. I believe it's important that these be clarified.

Their first concern has to do with the notice as to the hearing, and obviously that's not anything that we have any control over. We are not aware of any problem with the notice being given. Certainly, any time requirements for notice of the legislation were complied with and the evidence of that has been supplied to the office of the clerk.


The Chair: If I could interrupt at this juncture momentarily, the clerk advised me that what might be the cause of the discomfort on the part of Belle River is that usually there is a little bit more time from when the bill is actually read in the House to when it is called before committee.

As the time factors were somewhat abbreviated, they feel, I guess, that the usual time factors were not in place. But there is no requirement for X number of days to elapse between the actual reading of a bill and it coming before this committee. You have obviously, as the county, complied with all of the appropriate notice features of bringing any private member's bill forward, so I think you have, again, clarified the situation and I hope my comments clarify why this bill is on the agenda today.

Mr Stewart: In their second comment, they're indicating that, "If the makeup of the town council is to be altered, it should be decided by a vote of municipal councils in the region and not by county council," and indicate that it is their information "that the matter in question received only a four-vote majority."

I'm advised by the administrator that this is not correct, that 19 members of county council voted in favour of that legislation. We are here on behalf of 19 municipalities who have clearly indicated their support of the second piece of legislation, and in the case of the first piece of legislation, 19 out of 21 members voted in support of it.

Items 3 and 4 are basically premised upon the statement that is made in item 2. The various town councils have been adequately polled and allowed to vote on their own makeup. As a matter of fact, when it appeared that there might be some difficulty in coming here with one piece of legislation to change the names, there was a point at which I had been directed by 18 or 19 of the 21 municipalities on their behalf to prepare 19 separate pieces of legislation. So they were definitely intent on getting this thing through.

As far as item 4, the reduction of the number of representatives on council, they suggested than an individual municipal vote should be taken. This was more than adequately canvassed with the individual municipalities. Certainly the numbers on county council ultimately is a decision to be made by county council, and we feel it has been adequately addressed.

Item 5 with regard to substitutions: Our legislation does not affect that issue. There are provisions in the Municipal Act which somewhat deal with the question of substitutions on county councils, although my review of the legislation indicates that this issue has never been properly clarified by the courts. It's up in the air. Our legislation doesn't change anything. They're in the same position after the legislation is passed as they would have been before.

One further comment, just in passing: Our County of Essex Act does not affect the issue of plural votes in the county. The total votes of any local municipality on county council are not to exceed 10%, and within committee the members will remain having one vote.

So the net effect of the legislation is, in summary: The heads of council will all sit on county council and the mayors of the towns would now sit on county council, the feeling being that it's important that those who run the individual municipalities be there and have the input and have the opportunity to have the input. That's certainly in line with the trend that the province has been recommending over a number of years. The size of the county council in the county of Essex would be reduced from 42 to 24.

Having myself, and this is one of the things that makes it an honour to be here today, been a former warden of Essex county, I'm acutely aware of the difficulties in dealing with 42 members. I recall that on one occasion we had to find another room to meet in and we couldn't find a room that we could all fit in comfortably. So the number is much more compatible with proper business, and the change of the names in the second act to "mayor" and "deputy mayor" is simply to bring matters in line with the times. Many people don't know what a reeve is and don't know what a deputy reeve is. They know what a mayor is and they know what a deputy mayor is.

We would thank you for the opportunity to have been here today and we would ask urgently for your earnest attention to this bill.

The Chair: I'd like to make one observation here before I ask if there are any other additional people in the audience today who might wish to come forward.

Mr Stewart has made remarks relating to two bills and those are Bill Pr103 and Bill Pr108. He's definitely referred to both those, the county bills relating to the name changes as well as the actual voting structure of the council. So people should realize -- I would suggest, and I obviously can be corrected on this -- that since the presentation has been made in that regard, we won't revisit that; we won't go back to have Mr Stewart make remarks about Bill Pr108. Are folks in agreement with that? Thank you. Just for the interests of time, otherwise we could be here much longer.

Mr Stewart: I apologize if I got out of order on that. It was important that they be understood together.

The Chair: And I think that the context in which you framed your remarks is appropriate. It's just that members should be advised that -- they probably took it in that way -- there's really no point in going back and repeating it all over again.

I would ask then if there are any other interested parties who wish to come forward on these two matters, Bills Pr103 and Pr108. Seeing none, I have questions from the members, and the first person is Mr Hayes.

Mr Hayes: I take offence to that one remark, about people don't know what the reeves are, being a former reeve. In rural Ontario, they do.

The Chair: I always wondered what they did.

Mr Hayes: Okay. The Ministry of Municipal Affairs does not object to this. Actually, the proposals do meet the criteria used by the ministry to review representational issues, and I believe these bills actually address the representation by population, and I think that's very important. We do not have any objections.

Just for the members, I know the Chair mentioned about the notification. Of course, that is done through the clerk's office. Of course, we introduced the bill last Wednesday in the House and they notified the municipalities the first thing on Thursday morning, or at least, Thursday, just so you'll know on that particular issue.

We do not have any objections to these bills.

The Chair: I'd like to then turn to Mr Johnson.

Mr Paul R. Johnson (Prince Edward-Lennox-South Hastings): Thank you, Mr Stewart, for a very detailed explanation of Bills Pr103 and Pr108. You explained it so well that there are very few questions, I suspect. However, I was just wondering, those two municipalities that did not want to opt in to the name change, will they continue to sit on county council as reeves?

Mr Stewart: Interestingly enough, in that particular case, being both towns, the members of their council who will sit on council are both mayors, so it will have no major effect.

Mr Paul Johnson: I see. With regard to that as well, I wasn't clear on whether deputy mayors could sit in the place of mayors at county council, or if you plan to do that or allow that.

Mr Stewart: No, there's plan in that regard and this legislation that we're proposing doesn't touch that. Under the current provisions of the Municipal Act, there are a couple of sections -- section 71 and subsection 69(3), I believe it is, or (2). There has been some attempt to interpret those, not by anyone in the county of Essex, to allow for substitutions. There have been a couple of decisions on it. The major one was in, I believe, Mississauga, and it had to do with a separate piece of legislation. So from what I understand, there's never been a judicial interpretation of those sections.


Mr Paul Johnson: Is there any precedent case law with regard to this?

Mr Stewart: There's one piece of legislation that didn't deal with the Municipal Act. It dealt with a specific piece of legislation and was an oddity in that regard. The question arises out of the interpretation in the act indicating that a council can vote to have a member take the place of the head of council on any board or commission or other body of which he is by virtue of office a member except for a police commission. There is an interpretation that the head of council is not on county council by virtue of office. If you look at the definition of "head of council" in the Municipal Act, it doesn't list sitting on county council. That power comes under another section.

So, according to that argument, there would be no substitutions. But there are those that say that's what that section means. It's never clearly been interpreted by a court. We may be the first one to deal with it. I don't know. But certainly the county council and the local municipalities dealt with this act having been apprised of that information. The issue of substitutions has not come up within the context of this act. That remains, I guess, for another day and another venue.

Mr Paul Johnson: County restructuring has certainly become popular as counties try to bring their representatives into manageable numbers. I suspect that this will probably bode the county of Essex well, and I wish you the best.

Mr Eddy: Following up on Mr Johnson's question, the only precedent I know of of substitution on county council is the county of Hastings, which enacted its own bylaw and practised that for a number of years and may still be using it. But of course it's still, as you said, questionable as to the legal authority for that. But Hastings county council did operate that system and maybe is still.

I'd like to commend the delegation from Essex county for bringing forward the application, because it's certainly an important move to reduce the size of county council to make it a more workable size. Certainly I know the many benefits of that. It is a trend too, because in Lambton county the elected heads of all local municipalities are mayors and sit on county council. Your neighbour, that was done by government legislation a few years ago, and in the restructured county of Oxford of course our mayors sit on county council. I believe that the government just did that late last year with Simcoe county, didn't we? Local elected heads are mayors and they sit on county council. So it's an important step forward.

I realize it's sometimes an agonizing process to go through this, but I commend you for coming forward with this application, and I fully support it. I know that there are going to be other counties before us as well.

Mr Chris Hodgson (Victoria-Haliburton): I'd just like to say that I too, like Mr Eddy, come from a municipal background, as a past warden. I support this bill. I recognize it takes a lot of fortitude to push ahead with reducing the size of government and to try to serve your taxpayers more efficiently and provide the services that they demand today with less and less money. You mentioned that 19 of the 21 municipal governments are in favour of this. I am curious to know, what was the voting with the deputy reeves, or what now would be the deputy mayors? How did they support the bill?

The second thing is, the town of Leamington on January 28, 1994, had a concern about this interpretation of subsection 69(3). You've resolved that. It wasn't really a dispute; they were just questioning. I think you've answered that question, but if you'd like to comment on both that and the deputy reeves' voting.

Mr John Curran: Perhaps I could speak to the first part of your question. I wasn't privy to the actual registration of who voted what way in the local councils, but I can tell you that of the 21 municipalities, at a meeting of their own local council, 19 passed a resolution supporting the name change and the change in the composition of county council. So whether the actual deputy reeve voted against it or not, it was still the majority wish of the local council in 19 out of 21 instances that it be changed.

Mr Hodgson: How did they vote at county? Did they vote together at county, the reeve and the deputy reeve?

Mr Curran: I believe we have that information somewhere --

Mr Hodgson: I was just curious. That's not going to affect my vote.

Mr Curran: -- but I don't have it to recall, I'm sorry. I do believe it's part of the information that we gave to the clerk's office. It is available.

Mr Stewart: There are certainly deputy reeves who voted in favour of the legislation, a surprising number of them.

Mr Hodgson: There must have been, yes.

Mr Curran: I just might point out that the chair of the subcommittee is a deputy reeve from one of the towns. Mr DiBartolomeo is a crusader.

The Chair: Mr Crozier, did you want to weigh into the discussion at all?

Mr Crozier: Not at all. I'll just let it go along smoothly.

Mr Stewart: If I might, in regard to the question dealing with the town of Leamington, that's a rather unique situation in that the clerk for the town of Leamington is a solicitor; he is a clerk-solicitor. There were some conversations that we had and some discussions and some correspondence back and forth dealing with that interpretation on the issue of substitutions and various things, but they were all within the context, and I believe that letter, if it's the one I think it is, indicates very clearly that in no way did they mean to indicate they were opposing the legislation. But it was sort of a lawyer's discussion.

Mr Hodgson: Yes, that's what I gathered from it.

The Chair: Mr Eddy, you had an additional remark to make.

Mr Eddy: I've been accused many times of giving history lessons but I think it's interesting to note, because we have time, that in Britain, to be a municipal clerk you must be a solicitor. I hope that we haven't reached that stage of complexity yet, but we're fast approaching it in Ontario.

The other thing is that at one time Essex county council was the only county in Ontario that had a mayor of a town sitting on county council, and that was the mayor of Ojibway, for many years. Just history. Thank you.

The Chair: Thank you, Mr Eddy. I won't make any additional comments at this point, and will ask the members if they are ready to vote, first on Bill Pr103, and then we'll move right into Pr108. Do I hear any comments for or against voting? Are you agreed to vote? Yes.

We'll start off with 103. Shall section 1 carry?

Mr Mills: I have an amendment.

The Chair: You have to be fast off the mark, Mr Mills.

Mr Mills: I am usually very fast. Okay.

I move that section 1 of the bill be amended by adding the following subsection:


"(2) In this act,

"(a) a reference to a head of council is a reference to a mayor of a town and to a reeve of a township or village; and

"(b) a reference to a deputy head of a council is a reference to the reeve of a town and to the deputy reeve of a township or village.


"(3) The references to `mayor,' `reeve' and `deputy reeve' refer to those positions as they exist under the Municipal Act even though other titles may be used in a municipality to describe the same positions."

The Chair: All those in favour of the amendment? Agreed.

Shall section 1, as amended, carry? Carried.

Shall section 2 carry? Carried.

Section 3?

Mr Mills: Amendment, Madam Chair. Subsection 3(2): I move that subsection 3(2) of the bill be amended by adding after the word "off," in the second line -- I beg your pardon, by adding after "of," one f and not two -- "the members of."

The Chair: Thank you. We like to be precise about these matters. Shall the amendment carry? Carried.

Shall section 3, as amended, carry? Carried.

Shall sections 4 and 5 carry? Carried.

Shall the preamble carry? Carried.

Shall the title carry? Carried.

Shall the bill, as amended, carry? Carried.

Shall I report the bill to the House? Agreed.

Very good, that deals with Bill Pr103.

We'll turn to Pr108. Members are then ready to vote? Very good.

Shall sections 1 through 4 carry? Carried.

Mr Mills: I have an amendment, Madam Chair.

The Chair: To section 5?

Mr Mills: To section 5.

I move that section 5 of the bill be amended by striking out "as they existed at the coming into force of this act" at the end. To make sense of that, you have to read it.

The Chair: That's very good. I have done so, so it does make sense to me.

All those in favour of the amendment? Agreed.

Shall sections 6 and 7 carry? Carried.

Shall the schedule carry?

Mr Mills: I have an amendment to the schedule, Madam Chair.

I move that the schedule to the bill is amended by adding the following municipality: the Corporation of the Township of Colchester North.

The Chair: All those in favour of the amendment? Carried.

Shall the schedule, as amended, carry? Carried.

Shall the preamble carry? Carried.

Shall the title carry? Carried.

Shall the bill, as amended, carry? Carried.

Shall the bill be reported to the House? Agreed.

Thank you, the members from the county of Essex, and I'd like to thank my colleagues for their time and effort.

The committee adjourned at 1102.