Thursday 17 February 1994

Land Lease Statute Law Amendment Act, 1993, Bill 21, Mr Wessenger / Loi de 1993 modifiant des lois en ce qui concerne les terrains à bail, projet de loi 21, M. Wessenger


*Chair / Président: Brown, Michael A. (Algoma-Manitoulin L)

*Vice-Chair / Vice-Président: Daigeler, Hans (Nepean L)

Arnott, Ted (Wellington PC)

Dadamo, George (Windsor-Sandwich ND)

*Fletcher, Derek (Guelph ND)

Grandmaître, Bernard (Ottawa East/-Est L)

Johnson, David (Don Mills PC)

*Mammoliti, George (Yorkview ND)

Morrow, Mark (Wentworth East/-Est ND)

Sorbara, Gregory S. (York Centre L)

*Wessenger, Paul (Simcoe Centre ND)

*White, Drummond (Durham Centre ND)

*In attendance / présents

Substitutions present / Membres remplaçants présents:

Carr, Gary (Oakville South/-Sud PC) for Mr Arnott

Conway, Sean G. (Renfrew North/-Nord L) for Mr Grandmaître

Fawcett, Joan M. (Northumberland L) for Mr Sorbara

Marland, Margaret (Mississauga South/-Sud PC) for Mr David Johnson

Mills, Gordon (Durham East/-Est ND) for Mr Morrow

Wilson, Gary (Kingston and The Islands/Kingston et Les Iles ND) for Mr Dadamo

Also taking part / Autres participants et participantes:

Ministry of Housing:

Lyle, Michael, legal counsel

Morris, Noah, policy adviser, existing housing stock, housing policy branch

Wilson, Gary, parliamentary assistant to the minister

Clerk / Greffier: Carrozza, Franco

Staff / Personnel: Filion, Sibylle, legislative counsel

The committee met at 1020 in the Humber Room, Macdonald Block, Toronto.


Consideration of Bill 21, An Act to amend certain Acts with respect to Land Leases / Projet de loi 21, Loi modifiant certaines lois en ce qui concerne les terrains à bail.

The Chair (Mr Michael A. Brown): The standing committee on general government will come to order. The business of the committee is to consider Bill 21, An Act to amend certain Acts with respect to Land Leases, in clause-by-clause review. Yesterday, when the day concluded, Mr Conway was speaking, making an opening statement regarding the bill. I also have Mr Fletcher on my list, and then we will conclude with the closing remarks by Mr Wessenger.

Mr Sean G. Conway (Renfrew North): I won't prolong this unduly, but I do want to pick up where I left off yesterday, and I've had the benefit of some material happily provided by the legislative library in the interval. My friend Mr Mills has just left us for the moment.

You may recall that I was making the point yesterday, and I want to return to it today, that we are engaged here in I think a very interesting and important but rather unusual exercise, and that is that on a matter of significant, province-wide policy import, we have a private member's bill, advanced in the name of Mr Wessenger, the New Democratic government member for Simcoe Centre, that is in effect a government bill.

I was asking the library for some information. Mr Welch is not here. He is with the Ministry of Housing, a very able young man who some years ago was a legislative intern and I know of his interest in these matters. In fact we were talking at the end of the day yesterday about precedents. I think I said yesterday in this connection that I'm sure I could be contradicted, that there were cases in the past where this might have been done; I just couldn't remember any.

Thanks to the Clerk's office and the library, I have a memorandum which has been prepared which indicates that since 1949 there have been 15 private members' bills which have received royal assent. Obviously I was not around in 1949 when Mr Gordon B. Ellis advanced Bill 138, the Municipal Amendment Act, which was given royal assent on April Fool's Day of that year, 1949. But when I look at the list, I do recognize a number of these. Let me just cite a couple.

Mr Arnott's not here, but his mentor and predecessor, Jack Johnson, the former member for Wellington-Dufferin-Peel, is on the list. I remember this case. It was a private member's bill, Bill 10, the Election Finances Reform Amendment Act of 1977, advanced by Mr Johnson, the then government member, the Progressive Conservative member for Wellington-Dufferin-Peel, and it was royally assented to on April 25, 1977. That bill was something really very specific and very useful. It made a very slight adjustment in the election expenses reform legislation to provide for the fact that some weekly newspapers publish not on a Wednesday but on a Tuesday. All of us, certainly from the rural communities, thought it was a hell of a good idea and it was agreed to. That's one kind of example.

There are others on this list. The redoubtable Yuri Shymko in 1986 had a bill entitled Bill 146, the Geographic Township of Hansen Act, royally assented to, again a very, very specific issue, in that case I think having just to do with nomenclature.

Mr Welch from the Housing ministry yesterday raised this case: David Reville, now éminence noire in the Premier's office but then a very capable member for Riverdale, advanced Bill 10, the Landlord and Tenant Amendment Act of 1987. That received royal assent on June 29, 1987. I don't remember that, and that may in fact be a case where there was some more substantive policy question. I can't remember the specifics and I didn't have an opportunity overnight.

What I'm saying is that if I look at this list of 15, the ones I know are almost in all cases very, very specific, very local and in most cases very minor, not to in any way disparage the good intent. I simply raise that because, as I have said earlier, what we have in this enterprise -- and it is timely, it is undoubtedly important and there is no question that while I bring no expertise to this, I have listened very carefully to the arguments that have been advanced by the people who have appeared. There is no question in my mind that Mr Wessenger is clearly on to something here, like his predecessor Mr Owen, and others, but those two gentlemen in particular. This tells me, for example, that the problem is perhaps most serious in a part of Simcoe county. When I see two members advancing this kind of legislation, I'm just inclined to think, well, there are problems in a number of places but it appears that there's a particular irritation or a particular difficulty in Simcoe.

I give credit entirely to Mr Wessenger for what he's done. There is no doubt, as I've said earlier, there is a problem here. The question is, how do we deal with it? I understand as well the arguments that have been put by people, those tenants particularly who've come and said, "Listen, we are in a terrible" -- those two deputants from Orillia or was it Huntsville?

Mr Gordon Mills (Durham East): Barrie.

Mr Conway: Just about all the people I've heard, from a tenant's point of view, would make you think that today is too late, and I recognize that. I've certainly got some real sympathy for those people. But the question is, there is a whole bunch of people out there we have not heard from.

In the nature of things, a private member's bill is just that. It is an item that is advanced by a private member that is not imagined in our tradition and in our system to be what this is clearly becoming and what it has become, which is a government initiative.

Now, the partisan in me says: "Let it happen. Let a thousand flowers bloom." It's not going to be on my head that the unanticipated consequences and all the unimagined aspects of this policy fall. I would not want to be Ms Gigantes or her staff, because I have a feeling that if this initiative carries in this fashion, six months from now -- and it's not because people here aren't going to be well intentioned and want to do the right thing. But as I said yesterday, my experience in government suggests to me -- and to me only; it may be entirely different with other people -- that we've heard from, I don't know, what, how many deputants, maybe 25? But my guess is that for every one who came, there are at least 10 out there who didn't come, and of that group, there probably is 80% who don't even know what we're about or what we're up to.

I do want to make the point that this is irregular in this respect as well, that a normal government bill, which this now clearly is, goes through a fairly detailed process of development and advertisement.

I know if you're not in government, you think, "Well, doesn't everybody know?" You know, people like Joan Fawcett and Gordie Mills are always introducing private bills, and there are people out there who think they're government initiatives. They're not, and you spend a fair bit of your time in government saying, "Well, no." Most people don't really know how this system works, and I don't mean that as a disparagement; it's just life. They've got kids to raise and jobs to keep and mortgages to pay. They're not worried about the intricacies of our system.


But I just want to make the point that in this respect, there was no advertisement to speak of. The deputants whom we have received have come out of their own interest and out of their own encouragement, undoubtedly from members of the committee and others, and just judging from the people we've heard, I suspect the members from Simcoe and Durham East have been doing their job and saying: "Listen, I've got a private member's bill coming before the general government committee that arises out of specific concerns you've brought to my attention. Clear your schedule for the second or third week of February, because we are going to be dealing with that."

That's all right and proper, but there was no general advertisement out there to tell people in Thunder Bay, Ontario, or in Chatham, Ontario, or in Cornwall, Ontario, that in fact this bill is proceeding and it is no longer really a private member's bill, or put another way, there is a very real prospect that this bill is going to carry.

If I were a clerk-treasurer in Renfrew county and I was getting through the normal channels, as I do, the screed of paper from Queen's Park, I'd be going: "All right, so what are they up to this week? What are the government bills?" That's where I'd really turn my attention: "What are the government initiatives? What are those carping oppositionists whining about this week?" I'd give that all the attention it deserves, and then I'd probably look at the list of private members' initiatives. I've been around a while as the clerk-treasurer of township X or city Y, and I'd say, "Oh, well, that's interesting. Wilson's going to do that and Fawcett's going to do that and Brown is going to do that. That's all interesting," and not pay any attention to it. I would have no clue that Bill 21 is in fact an unusual private member's bill because it is going to move forward and I should pay much more attention to that than Conway's amendment to the time of day act or whatever else.

I say this very seriously, because there are 838 municipalities out there, and I am telling you, there will be a goodly number of them that are going to be surprised that this is happening.

Again, this is the government's call. If this is going to proceed, as I think it will, hey, that's the thing about a good, healthy majority government. You've got the numbers, you pass the bills and you take all the credit, and gee whiz, you might just get some of the want of credit too.

But I think that, as we've heard from some of the people here, there is more to this story than perhaps we understand, because none of us is really an expert. Certainly Mr Wessenger and Mr Mills and Mrs Fawcett know more than I do about it, but I just have this sick, sinking feeling that we are about something that (a) is irregular and (b) is going to come as a big surprise to a lot of people, who may in fact agree with a lot of this and say, "But listen, why didn't I get a chance to get my oar in the water? I didn't get a letter from anybody, certainly in official circles, telling me that this was about -- have you any idea the mess I've got in my mobile home park?" or "Didn't you people understand that there were two or three categories of these issues?"

I said it yesterday and I'll repeat it again: The worry I have is that we may not solve some of the worst problems that are out there. It may be that some of those are simply not solvable, but I just simply raise that point and I leave it there.

There are a couple of other things that I wanted to mention. I remember in the mid-1970s when the then Progressive Conservative government of the sainted William Grenville Davis, of progressive variety, was under great pressure from the community to address a relatively new development in real estate in this province called condominiums. A very good fellow, a good friend of mine named Darwin Kealey, had made one very, very close run at a very prominent Ottawa politician named Evelyn Gigantes and she had defeated him, but he was lining up for a second run, I think it was in 1977. He was asked by the then government of the day to undertake an inquiry into condominium situations and he produced a document that then led to legislation, and I can't remember -- somebody can correct me on this -- it came I think in the late 1970s, perhaps even a bit later than that. There was quite a lot of debate, and when I was listening to a lot of the deputants in the last couple of days, I thought, boy, this reminds me a lot of that, because the whole concept of condominiums was relatively new to the province and certainly the legislative framework we had in the 1950s and 1960s did not anticipate that kind of freehold property, if that's even the right phrase.

But the process took some time. There had to be, even after the original legislation was passed, some amendment, as I recall, either legislatively or in regulations. It was very similar to this, people saying, "Don't you know what's going on out there?" Identifying the problem was, in a sense, the easy part; finding the solution was a bit more complicated.

As legislators, it's clear we have to do something. I want to make that very clear. I think it is fair for my friends opposite to chastise those of us who were in a previous administration for not doing more. I for one, quite frankly, would really like to see that interministerial report. I understand why it's embargoed. I suspect there's no great lurking secret in it; there never are, really, in those things. I just would like to see what kind of issues were identified by that group of people.

We've heard a number of people come before the committee and say, "I was asked in 1989 to join this parade and I was pleased to do so and I worked with tenants' representatives, the real estate industry, property owners, government, the municipal representatives and we spent a year," or whatever it was, "and we produced this paper." Then, of course, the government changed and it sort of just stopped.

I'd really like to see that, just to see whether or not in that -- because that was, to be frank, a more representative group than this legislative committee could ever hope to be, because it was a different enterprise. It was specifically focused on this problem or parts of this problem. Just before I did anything -- and I want to do something -- I'd like to have the benefit of that. What did they find that we haven't thought about? Maybe we're right on the mark, but what if we're not? What if there is lurking out there something, and I presume that the ministry people have in fact -- they probably can't access that report, but they can certainly talk to the people who are associated with it. I'm just assuming that since this bill is taking on more and more of a government cast that somebody has in fact satisfied themselves that there is nothing incompatible with this and some of the principal findings of that, but I don't know that. I'd like, at some point, somebody from the ministry to give us some comfort around that.

Mr George Mammoliti (Yorkview): What are you suggesting, Sean?

Mr Conway: Listen, I'll conclude my remarks with the following: I sat here for two or three days. I've heard a lot of testimony. There is a problem; there is no doubt about that. It should be addressed. I am deeply concerned that we, with the best of intentions, are addressing it in a way that is going to mislead a lot of people, because there are a vast majority of people out there who have no idea what we're about, and even people who know what we're about will be thinking, "It's a private member's bill and Wessenger is going to do a good job; he's really going to put the heat on the government and the Legislature and we're going to see a government initiative." They're getting essentially a government initiative without there being any advertising, any public admission of that fact.

I pore over the daily press to see whether or not there are reports of the very timely and thoughtful deliberations of this committee. Outside of the Orono Weekly Times, I haven't seen a great deal. I say to the members opposite and to the committee generally, I think it is a real issue for me that we've now got a government initiative that is not understood as such outside of this room.

What would I like? I would like to see a government initiative up front. I would very much prefer, building on the work this committee has done, a report back to the Legislature that says: "There is agreement on all sides that in fact there are some urgent and pressing problems in this part of the whole housing industry, that they cry out for redress. In fact, some of them are more urgent than others. We are serving notice, on the basis of the very excellent hearings held around the Wessenger bill, Bill 21, that we are going to move forward with a government initiative that is going to carry this year to address the following components of that problem."


In fact, I don't think it would be unreasonable if the government were to say to the opposition House leaders: "We are going to move forward on the basis of what has been accomplished this year. We are going to move forward and we're going to conclude this process in the spring session or certainly by the end of the calendar year 1994." I would just like to see a government initiative, clearly advertised as such, that addresses the really serious aspects about which I think we all have a common concern.

That's essentially my main point. I am deeply, deeply distressed, again. I know why this happens. I give Paul a great deal of credit; it's not easy to do these private members' bills. It's not particularly easy to do it. It could not have been very difficult, I dare say, for Yuri Shymko to work up the background research for the Geographic Township of Hansen Act. I don't think Normie Sterling burned too much of the midnight oil in 1990 as he prepared the Ontario Food Terminal Amendment Act. I don't mean to discount his efforts, but my guess is that was a very specific, discrete legislative activity. This is not; this is a qualitatively different thing.

Let's say I'm out there in Wilmot Creek or someplace else and I've got Bill 21 and I think, "That's interesting." I don't even know it's a government bill, but I've read it and I sort of like this or that about it. I don't know what I've got; I'm no expert. All I know is I have got an Eaton's catalogue of amendments, the cumulative effect of which may in fact produce for me an entirely different bill than the one I have in my hand, which is Bill 21. I don't know that. I say that both rhetorically and honestly, because I'm not sufficiently expert. We're going to have a very detailed examination, presumably, of this.

What about poor Mr Maxfield and some of these others, or these tenants who were here? They've got Bill 21. I know Mr Mills and others have been working with people like Mr Maxfield, who has also spoken to me and my colleagues about this business of the signs and how we do it. But, again, I have a bill and I've got a whole series of amendments. It's maybe like a bit of Abbott and Costello. I don't know who's on first and who's on second, and the game's just begun. I'm being a bit facetious there, but I'm trying to be frank.

We want to do the right thing and I hope we will, but I want to be as clear and honest as I can about what we are about. I really would like to try to solve the most serious of the problems. Let me say -- this is sort of impolitic of me; I mean, the older I get around here, the more cranky I'm becoming on some things -- some of the problems I hear on both the management side and the tenant side, I just sit there and go, you know, in this Godforsaken rights-driven society of ours, we do have some responsibilities.

I've done some stupid things in my time, really stupid things when I think about them. I guess the question I have to ask myself is, at what point do my neighbours say, "Gee whiz, what we need is a full-blown, publicly paid-for redress of your stupidity"? I don't want to be too harsh, because I do think there are a lot of very legitimate problems about which we can do something, but I do recognize, listening to some of the problems into which these owners and tenants have gotten themselves, that I don't know whether there's any solution for some of those problems. I hope there is, and I really want to work constructively to that end, but as one of my constituents likes to say, what was the problem for which this is the solution?

The Chair: Thank you, Mr Conway. Mr Fletcher.

Mr Derek Fletcher (Guelph): Oh, it's all right. I think I'll pass.

Mr Mills: Can I just make a comment?

The Chair: No, actually, you can't. Mr Wessenger.

Mr Paul Wessenger (Simcoe Centre): Yes, I would appreciate this opportunity to sum up and respond. First of all, I should like to set the record very straight for this committee and all committee members. This bill is my bill; it bears my responsibility. It is not a government bill. Fortunately, it does have the support of a large number of members of caucus, but it does not have the endorsement of the government; it has endorsement of a lot of caucus members.

How did I happen to arrive at this bill? I think I should set that record straight too. I practised law in the Barrie area for over 20 years, doing a great deal of real estate law. During that period, I've had a lot of dealings with people who have bought and sold mobile homes, who have bought land-lease community homes. I've encountered, during my practice, a considerable number of problems with respect to the abuse of power by owners of these parks with respect to trying to prohibit the marketability of these parks, the conflict of interest that has arisen by the owners of these parks also being the sellers of the mobile homes and putting their interests ahead of those people trying to market their homes.

I think things are improving; I will definitely concede that. In some of the more sophisticated homes, management has improved. But certainly in the mobile home park area, it has not improved, in my experience.

If you look at my riding, my riding has the largest land-lease community in Ontario. As well, we heard about two mobile home parks where the home owners were threatened with loss of their equity. There's a third park that was also threatened in the past, but the situation there is on hold at the moment. If you look at Simcoe county, it has the largest number of mobile home owners in any county or region in Ontario. So I think it's well based why I brought this legislation.

Let me say that when I was first elected and I was told that I could bring a private member's bill, right at the beginning I started work on this bill, in 1990. I got to the stage of instructions to legislative counsel and asked for specific items to be included in the bill. At that time I was forced to draw back, because at that time I happened to be the parliamentary assistant to the Attorney General, and since the Landlord and Tenant Act technically was under the provisions of the Attorney General -- although, as far as the reality is concerned, the residential portion is under the Ministry of Housing, but it's technically under the Attorney General -- I was told I could not proceed with the bill. I put it on the back burner.

I was encouraged when I thought maybe we'd have a government bill in this area. When it became apparent that this was not going to happen and I was in a different position, I resumed work on this bill. I'd like to say, first, it's my bill. I take complete responsibility for it. The Ministry of Housing has had some input, but perhaps if you'd looked at my original instructions, you would see I was much more ambitious than what we have in this bill.

I tend to be a pragmatist. I'm a lawyer. I want to solve problems. I will try to solve the problems however I can. I'll use the system as it exists to solve those problems. Sure, I'd like to see the system reformed, and I'll deal with that later, but I think it's important to deal with problems and meet real needs.

Mr Conway: And all billable time?

Mr Wessenger: I consider myself a pragmatist. I'm not tied up with tradition or, "This has never been done before," etc.

I'd like to also talk about what I'm trying to do here. I'm trying to give those home owners who happen to own mobile homes, or who happen to own land-lease community homes, some of the same rights that other home owners have. Right now, people who are home owners of mobile homes and who are owners of land-lease community homes have diminished rights -- substantially diminished rights. I think home ownership is one of the prime values in our society. I think if you look at the question of security of your tenure of where you live, or your health and your food and your job, those are the basic rights. I'm dealing with something that's very important to society, something of the highest value, so I think this is a very important bill.

What does this bill do? I don't think it's quite as extensive as Mr Conway's making it out, or some other people are making it out. If you look at what it's doing, there are, I believe, four or five points.

First of all, what it's doing is very substantial -- and I will agree; it's the first priority I've had because of the danger of people losing the equity in their home; I've put that at the first priority and I will make no apologies for that -- is that I'm bringing home owners under the protection of the Rental Housing Protection Act. Why am I doing that? Because at present, people who live in mobile homes have no protection from losing their home in the event the owner wishes to change the use of the land to another use, or there are other reasons he can do it too with respect to environmental matters. He can close the home.

So these people, under the present situation, have no legal protection. I think that's a major gaffe in our law. I think I'm correcting a major gaffe in the law by putting the interests of the owner of a mobile home ahead of the interests of a property owner to redevelop his lands.


This doesn't prevent the redevelopment of lands. Let's just talk about the red herring that some people might throw out. It just means that if a landlord wants to redevelop his lands he's going to have to negotiate with the home owners on the mobile homes and they're going to get some compensation for their equity and not have their equity destroyed. I don't believe in allowing people to develop their lands and destroy the equity of people who own mobile homes. That, to me, is very straightforward, very important. That's the first point of the bill.

The second point of the bill is that it makes the Landlord and Tenant Act apply to land-lease communities. The act presently applies to mobile home parks, but for some unknown reason, when the previous government -- and Mr Conway formed part of that government -- passed the legislation with respect to bringing mobile home parks under the provisions of the Landlord and Tenant Act, it left out land-lease community homes. I think it was a technical error by bureaucracies. I believe that bureaucracies can be helpful, but I think it requires the input and the combination of working together, both politicians and bureaucracies. Leave either one on their own and they're dangerous, but working together you can achieve something significant.

What it also does is adds some specific rights. First of all, it brings land-lease communities under the Landlord and Tenant Act. It adds some specific rights. It says if a landlord is going to refuse to consent to assign the lease -- in other words, prevent the home owner from selling or marketing his unit -- the landlord has to put the reasons in writing. Why is that necessary? Well, let me tell you from my experience that these types of owners, a lot of them are very bad owners, and they will give very improper reasons, illegal reasons, for refusing to consent. Forcing them to put it in writing makes good sense because it would eliminate all these illegal reasons and it will eliminate a lot of unnecessary court applications, which will also be a saving to the treasury, as well as be a good protection to the owners of the homes.

Secondly, it deals with the first right of refusal. My original bill outlawed the first right of refusal because I wanted to equate the rights of the person who owns a land-lease community home or a mobile home with those of an ordinary home owner. But we listened to the representations; there seems to be a general consensus among owners of parks and among owners of mobile homes in land-lease communities that a first right of refusal is satisfactory, based on a 72-hour provision and on the same terms and conditions in price. The amendment has been prepared to change my bill in that regard and I think that's one of the benefits of these hearings.

Thirdly, the provision with respect to signs was again trying to equate the right of a person who owns a home to a person who owns a mobile home or a land-lease community home by giving the same rights that an ordinary home owner has to put up a sign. Again, we're going to have some discussion on that and we'll see what happens with the bill.

Fourthly, I'd put in the reserve fund; this is one I'm prepared to drop, basically because I'm persuaded by the arguments with respect to the fact that having a reserve fund for one type of situation and not another is very problematic. It's a very complex area and I will even concede to Mr Conway that perhaps this is an area that if you're going to do a reserve fund you probably do need the expertise of the Ministry of Housing in developing the appropriate specifics of it. I think it's a problematic area so I'm prepared to drop it.

Lastly, what I have done under the Planning Act was a very simple amendment. It's really to say, "Hey, I've seen a lot of very poorly planned and developed mobile home parks in this province." You look at all the environmental problems, you look at the problems with respect to roads, you look at the problems with respect to all these services and you say, "Well, something has to be done." I've said they have to be under site plan control, which I think is a very appropriate remedy.

That is what my bill is doing. It's a little more ambitious than the normal private member's bill, but I think it's still within the realm of that area. It's not a comprehensive legislation. Let me just deal with some of the comments the opposition members have made. Some of them said, "Oh, we should have a comprehensive bill, including the whole area." Well, I can imagine the comments that would be brought if I had brought a comprehensive bill as a private member's bill. I would like to do it, but --

Mrs Margaret Marland (Mississauga South): Who said that? No one said that.

Mr Wessenger: -- but certainly that has been one of the positions, criticisms of my bill, that we should have a comprehensive bill. Yes, I agree, we do need a comprehensive legislation in the long term and I'm sure I'm as Utopian as the members of the opposition parties here, but I believe in solving problems in the short run because, as John Maynard Keynes says, "In the long run, we'll all be dead," and in the long term, mobile home owners will lose equity in their homes and will have fewer rights. So I say let's be pragmatic and deal with this matter.

That's one comment I heard; second, the comment that the bill is not balanced, according to the member for Mississauga South. I think the only thing that would make the member for Mississauga South think anything was balanced is to return to the era of John Locke in 18th-century England, where land property rights prevailed over other rights. I think the property rights of home owners here have more importance than land property rights.

Mrs Marland: He likes that, he thinks he's funny now.

Interjection: He is.

The Chair: Order, order. Mr Wessenger has the floor.

Mr Wessenger: Even after my legislation, we're still going to have the situation of mobile home owners and land-lease community owners -- they'll still not have exactly equal rights to home owners, but it will be a major improvement. It'll give them greater security of tenure; it'll give them greater ability to market their homes and greater ability to protect their equity.

Now I'd like to deal with the issue raised by Mr Conway, that private members ought not to do anything significant in the legislation area. I profoundly disagree with that point of view. I profoundly disagree with the fact that the Legislature does so little. I would like to see it do more. I am very much in favour of legislative reform and I'll be quite frank about this. I would like to see the process changed. It wasn't my decision we didn't advertise; I would have liked to advertise. This is the decision of a subcommittee of which I'm not a member, a committee of which I was not here to deal with approving the subcommittee report.

Mr Mammoliti: But your voice was there.

Mr Wessenger: I would prefer a different process. I would have preferred more time to have hearings, I would have preferred more time for clause-by-clause study, and I think we ought to look at changing the legislative process to give members of the Legislature who have an issue to prepare meaningful bills, the ability to try to get them processed through. Maybe an idea might be to allocate additional time in the Legislature, additional time in committee for private members' bills to be dealt with in a different way.

I don't even like the process in which bills go through. I think we can improve it that way with respect to the question of -- the technical rules inhibit, sometimes, solutions to problems. That's what I have to say to Mr Conway.

I don't think the changes are as complex as he makes out. I'm quite happy to answer any questions on impact, or try to, or if he wants the opinion of the Ministry of Housing here, that's fine. I think I'm quite knowledgeable on this area. I've done a great deal of work and energy on this bill. I spent a great deal of time dealing with it and I'm going to say now I appreciate the input I've had in the hearings. We've made some changes in the bill and I'm sure we'll come up with an improved bill as a result of the people presenting.

I also was struck -- and another thing of these hearings is that listening to some of the owners, like Mr Rice in my own area indicating that he could support my bill, and he's an owner, as long as he could deal with the sign issue. The Ontario land-lease federation, again, is very responsible with respect to its comments. This bill seems to have, I would suggest, support from both sides.

What I'm saying is, let's get on with the job, let's pass this legislation, let's get it done as quickly as possible so we can protect those people out there who are going to lose their equity. I know they're not large numbers, but they're people; they count.

I'm a lawyer and I'm used to dealing on the basis of clients. Well, I think constituents are the same as clients and I wish we all would look at constituents the same as clients. I would ask people to discard their partisanship and support this bill and let me get it through. Thank you.

Mrs Marland: Mr Chairman, I have a letter here --

The Chair: Do you have a point of --

Mr Wessenger: And no, Margaret, I'm not going to withdraw the bill.


Mrs Marland: I have a letter here that I find it necessary to ask Mr Wessenger about. The letter is dated January 16, 1994. It's obviously a --

The Chair: Mrs Marland, we're about to commence clause-by-clause. There will be ample opportunity during clause-by-clause for members to raise particular issues about particular items. We will start with clause-by-clause.

Mrs Marland: All right, then I'll ask a procedural question.

The Chair: That's fine. If you have a procedural point of order, I take it.

Mrs Marland: In this letter -- this is on procedure. In this letter -- on procedure, Mr Chairman, you have to hear me -- the mover of the bill says: "I am in the opinion that the committee should travel outside the Toronto area for the hearings. I've suggested to the committee that we travel to Cobourg, London and Barrie. I feel quite strongly that one day is not sufficient for the hearings." He's suggesting, in his opinion, that we travel. I want to ask if he has changed his mind in the past month.

Mr Fletcher: The subcommittee decided that. It's not him.

The Chair: To be clear, the committee decided what would happen when it adopted the subcommittee report. The committee restricted the number of days and the amount of time by a motion of the Legislature.

Mr Fletcher: You weren't here for that part of it.

Mrs Marland: No, I wasn't. And there was a decision that there would not be any of these areas covered since the --

The Chair: The motion of the subcommittee, which was adopted by a motion of the committee, decided this issue.

Mrs Marland: There was a subcommittee meeting early in December that I attended, so it must have been a subcommittee meeting after that? All right.

The other question on procedure is that this wonderful yellow package -- and I do appreciate having it in yellow because it does stand out from the other piles of papers on our desks -- are these 33 amendments all Mr Wessenger's amendments?

The Chair: I suppose they're actually no one's amendments until they're moved, but maybe the clerk could be helpful.

Clerk of the Committee (Mr Franco Carrozza): The amendments you have in the yellow package, it only contains two amendments -- they are not from Mr Wessenger -- and those are on section 8 and section 24.

Mr Fletcher: The others are from Gary Wilson.

Mrs Marland: Okay. Can anybody tell me what number those are? It's also helpful, whoever has numbered these pages, that they are numbered, and I appreciate that. Where did those two amendments come from that didn't come from Mr Wessenger?

Clerk of the Committee: The first question, if I may, section 8 is number 6. Number 30 is the other one.

Mrs Marland: Number 30, which is section 24.

Clerk of the Committee: Yes.

Mrs Marland: And where did those two amendments come from?

Clerk of the Committee: The two were given to me by the staff of Mr Wilson.

Mrs Marland: Mr Wilson, are these two amendments from the Minister of Housing?

Mr Gary Wilson (Kingston and The Islands): I moved them after consultation with people on the staff and Mr Wessenger.

Mr Fletcher: Do they come from the Minister of Housing, yes or no?

Mr Gary Wilson: Yes.

Mrs Marland: Those two amendments are from the Minister of Housing?

Mr Fletcher: Ministry of Housing.

Mr Gary Wilson: Yes, the Ministry of Housing; it's not directly from the minister.

Mrs Marland: No, but they're from the Ministry of Housing?

Mr Gary Wilson: They're after consultation, that's right.

Mr Conway: Is there some extraterrestrial, extragalactic body?

Mrs Marland: Yes.

Mr Hans Daigeler (Nepean): Gary Wilson. He's called Gary Wilson.


Mr Conway: My only point is --

The Chair: Order. Order.

Mr Conway: The Minister of Housing must accept responsibility for the things that are advanced by the ministry.

The Chair: Order. I have a number of members on the list for this point.

Mrs Marland: Mr Wilson --

Mr Gary Wilson: It is through the Chair.

Mrs Marland: Through the Chair to Mr Wilson, the parliamentary assistant to the Minister of Housing: Are these two amendments from the Minister of Housing?

Mr Gary Wilson: Yes, they are.

Mrs Marland: Thank you. Do you have amendments other than these two?

Mr Gary Wilson: I think there are three amendments that we're putting forward.

Mrs Marland: Oh, good. What's the other one?

Mr Gary Wilson: They're 26, 27 and 33.

Mrs Marland: Are those sections or page numbers?

Mr Gary Wilson: Sorry. They're page numbers as they're in the --

Mrs Marland: In the yellow package?

Mr Gary Wilson: Yes.

Mrs Marland: Page 26?

Mr Gary Wilson: Yes.

Mrs Marland: To subsection 21(9)?

Mr Gary Wilson: That's right.

Mrs Marland: That's from the Minister of Housing as well?

Mr Gary Wilson: Yes. Sections 21 and 22 on page 27. That's circled on it.

Mrs Marland: Okay, so it's page 26. Now it's page 27? Okay. Is there anything else from the Minister of Housing?

Mr Gary Wilson: The very last page: 33.

Mrs Marland: So how many is this altogether now, then? Is that five altogether or six? How many amendments altogether from the Minister of Housing?

Mr Gary Wilson: It's three, the three that I gave. The first one is on page 26.

Mrs Marland: Okay. But what about the first two that were identified? How about on page 6? Is that from the Minister of Housing?

Mr Gary Wilson: No.

Mrs Marland: But those were received by the clerk from you.

Mr Fletcher: Gary, did you say three?

Mr Gary Wilson: I said three, yes.

Mrs Marland: Okay, then you gave the clerk two other amendments as well?

Mr Gary Wilson: Not that I'm aware of. I know I'm moving three, the ones I listed.

Clerk of the Committee: Mr Wilson has identified three different ones which I was not given by Mr Wilson. They were given to me by Mr Wessenger. The only two that I received from the ministry staff were to section 8, which is number 6, and to section 24. So that's a total of five.

Mr Conway: The second one, Franco, was --

Clerk of the Committee: Page 6. The other is on --

Mrs Marland: The other one is page 30.

Clerk of the Committee: -- page 30, which is to section 24.

Mrs Marland: Through the Chair to Mr Wilson, are you familiar with the other two?

Mr Gary Wilson: Not really. No, I'm not.

Mrs Marland: So we now have amendments brought to the committee on this bill that the parliamentary assistant for Housing isn't familiar with and didn't even know were here.

Mr Gary Wilson: Well, I shouldn't say that.

Mrs Marland: So who's taking ownership for these two amendments?

Mr Gary Wilson: Mr Wessenger.

The Chair: I think the way we could do this probably most properly is to go through the bill clause by clause, and an amendment is moved or not moved. Just because a member has a particular amendment in the package doesn't mean it will actually be presented. They're actually there more for advice than for fact. The Chair doesn't recognize any amendments until they're there. I do believe it's helpful for members to know the source of the amendment just so that as they're studying the bill they understand the import of what's happening. But I would clarify, there is no amendment until someone actually makes it.

Mrs Marland: I appreciate that, Mr Chair, and that's a fair comment. The point that I'm making, however, is that as we have been saying -- you know, the mikes are a little loud this morning. I was noticing that when Mr Wessenger was speaking.


Mr Wessenger: I have a loud voice, Margaret.

Mrs Marland: Mine is a little loud too.

The Chair: Sometimes we don't need the mikes at all.

Mrs Marland: I know. I just hear it echoing a little. I'll try to talk a little more quietly so I don't drown everybody.

I just think that since we have been talking all along about the fact that this bill is some kind of hybrid at best and now we have --

Mr Fletcher: You should sit over here. Here you're getting an echo.

Mrs Marland: No, it's much better now. Thank you. Now we have five government amendments but the government doesn't want to take ownership of this bill and I think --

Mr Mammoliti: Margaret, just go on, please.

Mrs Marland: -- this gets back into what Mr Conway was saying as well.

The Chair: Fine. Mr Mammoliti and Mr Conway wish to speak to the same point. Mr Mammoliti.

Mr Mammoliti: I just feel somewhat compelled to respond to a couple of points that were made about subcommittee meetings. I think what people should know is that when the subcommittee had made its decisions, it made the decisions as a subcommittee and reported it to the committee. The committee then took the recommendations from the subcommittee and adopted them.

Mr Conway brought up the point about advertising. I think it's important for every member to know that the point came up in subcommittee and we all agreed that one precedent plays a role with advertising and we needed to look at precedents, if I wasn't mistaken, in terms of advertising before we can make that commitment. Mr Conway brought up the point about precedents in committee.

Secondly, the travel was talked about as well and that again precedents needed to be looked at for private members' bills and whether or not travel was affordable for the committee. We needed to look at the number of deputants who were in front of us and then decide on whether or not it was worthwhile to travel. The subcommittee reported and suggested to the committee that the travel wasn't necessary, and the committee agreed, and that advertising wasn't necessary, and the committee agreed.

So for us to bring this up now and talk about it as if it's some sort of a concern to everybody, I think I have a particular problem with that in view of the amount of discussion that has taken place both in subcommittee and, Ms Marland, you were there in subcommittee when we talked about this --

Mrs Marland: No. Excuse me.

Mr Mammoliti: -- and then we brought it to committee and we talked about it there as well. So I wanted to get that on record because I get somewhat frustrated when we make an agreement in subcommittee, that when it comes to committee, the committee makes the agreements and then later on people are saying that it's some sort of a problem.

The Chair: Thank you, Mr Mammoliti. Mr Conway.

Mr Conway: Before we begin, just a couple of things, and with the committee's indulgence I want to perhaps ask Mr Wessenger again just before we begin the clause-by-clause, Mr Chairman, because I think it might be easier. It certainly will be for me and I was making some notes when Paul was speaking. I think it would be useful, before we begin the clause-by-clause, to have the sponsor of the bill again just so at least I'm clear what he highlighted, I thought very effectively, and I'd like him to kind of --

Mr Wessenger: I'll be happy to do that.

Mr Conway: -- recapitulate in his view the essential policy ingredients that he seeks to achieve with Bill 21.

The Chair: I would actually prefer that if Mr Wessenger was to do that, he'd do that when we address section 1.

Mr Wessenger: Yes.

Mr Conway: All right. That's fair. That's fine. The other point I was going to make then -- and I'm quite happy to have it done that way.

The Chair: I'm trying to work on Mrs Marland's point of order.

Mr Conway: The only other point I want to make and I want to restate is that I am delighted that the legislative activity is changing from some of the past. I've no problem with that and I just want to make that clear. I just think that we owe it to the world out there to be more clear that we are changing; that's all. I'm not suggesting anything. That private members' bills are now going to become more substantive I think is probably a good thing. It's going to be more complicated than people understand, but I don't have a problem with that. But we owe it to the world out there; in fact, on matters like this I think we owe it to our colleagues, who don't understand, I think in the main, what this is. I'm going to be asking, on section 1, for example, the question again, is this an initiative, sponsored as it is by the member for Simcoe Centre, that is going to enjoy the support and favour of the government to the extent that we can imagine it receiving royal assent? Because in that event it is a different --

The Chair: Mr Conway, you are moving a little bit from the point of order. Mr White.

Mr Drummond White (Durham Centre): I just want to make reference again to what I had mentioned yesterday, and that is that I want to congratulate Mr Wessenger on the bill that he's bringing forth. We have heard it's a hybrid but I don't think it's essentially a hybrid. The issue of consultation which he's secured from the Ministry of Housing does not mean --

The Chair: We're starting to wander again and --

Mr White: -- does not mean that he is --

The Chair: Order. The point of order Mrs Marland raised had to do -- and I think it was valid, maybe not from the point of order part but at least for valid information for members -- with which amendments were going to be advanced by the government, as I heard.

If we're going to get on with this clause-by-clause and actually do some work on the bill we're going to have to get at it.

Mr White: What I'm simply suggesting is that the motions or the amendments that will be put forth by Mr Wilson I think basically reflect some assistance. They are not a direction from the government. This is not an endorsement from the minister but rather a consultation and a help to Mr Wessenger in this area of public policy, and I again want to congratulate him and hope that democracy will continue to be forthcoming.

Mrs Marland: I would appreciate it if Mr Mammoliti might be willing to be a little more accurate about the subcommittee. In fairness, you obviously didn't hear the clerk confirm that I was not at the subcommittee where it was decided not to travel on this bill. I was at one subcommittee where you were asking that we advertise in North York and the Toronto papers for your bill --

Mr Mammoliti: That's not true. That's absolutely not true.

Mrs Marland: Pardon?

Mr Mammoliti: That's absolutely false.


Mr Mammoliti: We discussed both of the bills.

Mrs Marland: Yes, we did discuss both of the bills. But what I'm --

Mr Mammoliti: With regard to advertising as well.

Mrs Marland: But the point I'm making is on the decision about whether or not we would go to these communities that Mr Wessenger put in a letter on January 16, which was more than a month after the subcommittee that I attended. Apparently there was another subcommittee which I didn't attend and I think that's what the record should be showing.

The Chair: Thank you. Mr Daigeler, on a different point --

Mr Daigeler: Right. As you --

The Chair: Point of order, I presume.

Mr Daigeler: Well, to what I said yesterday, and you said I should bring it up again at the appropriate time and I think this is the appropriate time in the normal process.

I had indicated yesterday that I would appreciate some comments from the ministry. Normally, after the opening remarks we do hear from the ministry, from ministry officials, and since there are numerous questions that have been raised and since what we're all about is to try and bring about a good bill, it would seem to me proper to be able to ask some questions both of the representative of the ministry, who I guess is the parliamentary assistant, and officials from the ministry.

The Chair: Mr Wilson, on that point.

Mr Gary Wilson: I should point out that --

The Chair: Actually, I don't think that's a point of order. I would accept a motion asking that that happen.

Mr Daigeler: Do you require a motion then?

The Chair: I think so.

Mr Daigeler: Did you want a motion then?

The Chair: Yes.

Mr Daigeler: I move that we hear from representatives of the ministry regarding this bill.

The Chair: I think you've already spoken to it.

Mr Daigeler: Yes.


Mr Gary Wilson: In the first place, that's not the normal approach. We would hear from the ministry on a government bill, at the beginning, before we have the public presentations. So in that sense, there's definitely a difference here, and I think that motion would have been in order at the beginning of the hearings, rather than now.

It has been pointed out that there are personnel from the ministry here, both legal and policy areas, and they're certainly willing to comment on the matters that have been raised. But I would suggest we should do it in the clause-by-clause, which is where we are now, and when these things arise, then we'll turn to them for the advice.

The Chair: Mr Conway on the motion.

Mr Conway: For people to talk about the usual procedure in this, I've got to tell you, is now becoming farcical, because this is a highly unusual procedure, though it may be highly desirable. But let me be clear: This is about as bizarre an environment as I have seen.

We just earlier today saw a situation whereby we have in our package some amendments, the parentage of which appears to be somewhat dubious. We will find out, as the Chairman rightly points out, when the amendment is put whether in fact there is a sponsor. At that point, if we have a bastard child, we will find out. But let me just say what I would like, and I'm kind of easy on this. Our system is a system of responsible government, and the "responsible" there means that at the end of the day somebody accepts responsibility for what is done in Her Majesty's name. I continue to be caught by a situation where we have a bit of a fiction, I think. We've got a private member's bill that is clearly now a government initiative, and there's nothing wrong with that. But since that's what we've got --

Mr Gary Wilson: On a point of order, Mr Chair: Are we talking about the motion here? Mr Conway never mentioned the motion.

Mr Conway: Yes, I'm speaking to the motion and the role that the government and the minister --

The Chair: It's about as close as members usually get.

Mr Mammoliti: Sean, then if that's the case, what's the big deal?

Mr Conway: There's no point in giving this --

Mr Mammoliti: I think it's a precedent.

Mr Conway: I withdraw. We'll do it a different way.

The Chair: Mr Wessenger on the motion.

Mr Wessenger: I just want to say again that it's my bill. I have responsibility for it and I think that I have the responsibility to be carrying it. I think all questions should be directed to me, and if we need the assistance of some technical staff, if I can't answer any questions, I will certainly be prepared to ask them to clarify. But I think the questions should be directed to me and through me. It's my bill and I think that's the way the process should go.

Mr Daigeler: I appreciate what Mr Wessenger has said. It's not, as far as I'm concerned, a criticism towards the initiative that Mr Wessenger has put forward. But after all, if it's going to be adopted in the House, this is going to be an initiative in the Ministry of Housing. There's no running away from it. So in order for us to recommend to the House, which we're doing -- we're recommending to the House -- I certainly do want to know: How does the Minister of Housing, who, as Mr Conway says, is the ultimate person in this case in charge and the minister in charge of housing-related matters, feel about this?

Mr Mammoliti: They're not in charge of private members' bills.

Mr Daigeler: Of course they're not in charge of private members' bills. I know that, but --

The Chair: Through the Chair, Mr Daigeler.

Mr Daigeler: In order for me to recommend to the House, I would like to hear from representatives of the Ministry of Housing, including the parliamentary assistant, whether this bill is supported, how they view this matter, what are their other plans with regard to this whole question or the issues that have been raised. I think there are a number of reasonable questions that have to be asked, because ultimately this has to be approved in the House and will have to be an initiative that will enter the acts that are supported by the government.

I think it's most proper -- as was done, by the way, on the bicycle helmets one, where the Ministry of Transportation was intimately involved in this and certainly had representatives who spoke and so on. So I don't see anything problematic or otherwise to hear from ministry representatives on this.

Mrs Marland: Mr Chairman, how are we going to play this charade? Are we going to have the ministry only step in when we're dealing with the ministry amendments? We've got ministry amendments here.

Mr Gary Wilson: Where are they?

Mrs Marland: You've just identified them.

Mr Gary Wilson: It's just the amendments; it's not the ministry.

Mrs Marland: They are --

The Chair: Mrs Marland, through the Chair; Mr Wilson, you can have your turn if you want to be on the list.


Mrs Marland: Mr Chair, I will talk to you because it's so difficult talking. I'm going to try to talk to you.

Mr Gary Wilson: Talk to the motion.

Mrs Marland: There are five amendments in here that are identified as coming from the ministry. Do you think we're clear on that?

Mr Conway: Don't press your luck, Margaret.

Mrs Marland: Okay. I support the motion because obviously what we're dealing with here is not entirely a private member's bill.

The other thing is, I would like some brilliant person at this table to tell me which ministry is going to enforce this dog's breakfast when it's passed in the House and proclaimed, other than the Ministry of Housing. So why shouldn't we have the Ministry of Housing staff sit here and answer questions? It's not going to be enforced by the Ministry of Health or the Ministry of Community and Social Services or the Ministry of Transportation. If this government chooses to have this bill passed under the guise of a private member's bill when actually it's a government bill, if that's what it wants to do and that's what happens, it will be enforced by the Ministry of Housing. I think it would be absurd to vote against having Ministry of Housing officials being able to sit at the table and answer questions about it. What is so spooky about that? Are you nervous about what your staff might say in answer to the questions?

Mr Mills: He's said that.

Mrs Marland: Well, then, why wouldn't you support having the ministry address this bill at this point, as the motion says?

Mr Mills: He's already said that.

Mr Mammoliti: I don't mean to take up a lot of time, but I've got a couple of mixed messages here that I'm receiving from a number of different members. I think that every point is quite legitimate and I don't want to sound like I want to write any of these points off.

Mr Conway talks about the process and talks about precedent as well in committee and the type of change that this might impose on committee meetings in the future. That's what I'm getting out of the message, anyway. What I'm not getting out of his message is whether he believes it's a negative change or whether it's a positive change. If this in essence is setting some sort of precedent, I believe quite firmly that even if this is a first and even if this does set some sort of a precedent in committee, it will be a positive change to the way committee works and that this is, in my opinion, the definition -- in answering Ms Marland's question, from what I can gather -- of a private member's bill.

Some people are talking about the definition of a private member's bill and assume that this is not supposed to be a private member's bill. If these members can come out and talk about what the definition of a private member's bill is, then the argument, in my opinion, might be quite valid. But in my opinion, this is a private member's bill. A private member has decided --

Mrs Marland: Did you have government amendments to your Bill 95?

Mr Mammoliti: -- to bring this forward through the process that is structured through the House.

Mrs Marland: Did he? I wasn't here, so I don't know.

Mr Mammoliti: Mr Chair, I think I'm bringing up some pretty good points and --

The Chair: You have the floor, Mr Mammoliti.

Mr Mammoliti: I hear some heckling from Ms Marland.

Mrs Marland: I asked you a question about your bill.

Mr Mammoliti: I think she can wait for her turn.

Mrs Marland: Okay, I'll have my turn.

Mr Mammoliti: Yes, if you don't mind, Margaret.

When we spoke even in subcommittee about the two private members' bills that were coming forward, we spoke about the amount of time that was allocated as well. With great respect to Ms Marland, she had, from what I can remember, spoken about the time that's required to deal with Bill 21 and perhaps needing a little more time.

Mr Gary Wilson: Don't go too far.

Mrs Marland: No, don't go too far.

Mr Mammoliti: This is something that we may want to, as a committee, talk to our House leaders about because while we had a concern about the amount of time that was allocated to both bills, the House leaders decided that they will take the recommendation of two weeks to deal with both and condense that into one to deal with both.

So this is something that I think this committee might want to do after the hearings, and that's of course to talk to the House leaders and say, "Look, we had a concern here about the allocated time for these bills in committee and you had decided to drop that to one as opposed to two weeks." I'm not sure whether that might be some sort of a solution. I know it's not a solution in terms of Mr Wessenger's bill, but it might be a solution in terms of future process for the committee and how subcommittee might be heard at the House leader level. Because in my opinion, that was the problem, and that's the problem that people keep raising, the amount of time that's being dealt with the bill.


Mr Gary Carr (Oakville South): I realize I'm coming to the debate a little bit late. You have suggested I did, Derek, so I did.

Mr Conway: Don't be shy; nobody else is here.

Mr Carr: I guess when you sit and listen to it -- you wonder why people are cynical about the politicians and the process. I've been sitting here as a newcomer for a couple of hours now, running in and out for other subcommittees, and I'm still having a hard time figuring out what the heck we're doing here, where we're at with it.

Maybe that's just me, but when you sit here and look at this particular piece of legislation, the problem I see is I was contacted by some people who weren't even aware of it coming through. I think because it was a private member's bill, they didn't follow it, and there is a great deal of concern out there. I rushed around probably two days before the committee hearings started and met with people in Mrs Marland's office trying to get a handle on it. Some of the people in Housing were kind enough to then meet with some of the folks from my riding about this particular piece of legislation, because they did have some valid concerns, some amendments they would like to bring forward.

I don't know, in terms of the amendments coming forward, how much of that has been looked after in some of the amendments that are coming forward, and I don't care who brings them forward, whether it's the Ministry of Housing or Mr Wessenger. But I want to tell you that there are some very, very serious concerns out there from people. In the scheme of things, of course, not sitting on this bill, with the number of bills, I didn't take a whole lot of time initially to take a look at this bill. But when you see how it's going to affect people and their livelihoods, there's some major, major concern out there in this piece of legislation.

I am now going through some of these amendments that have been tabled to see how they can improve it. My suggestion with the whole thing, as somebody who's come in late to the game, I admit, is to go back and get it done properly. I cannot believe that in this day and age, we proceeded this way on a piece of legislation that's gone through and nobody knew about it. We've got some amendments from the Ministry of Housing. They're involved a little bit and then Mr Wessenger's involved. We don't know who brought this motion forward: Mr Wilson brought that, but it's on behalf of the Ministry of Housing; but no, maybe it was Mr Wessenger. Forgive me for sounding confusing, but it's little wonder people are cynical about the process.

The Chair: I feel compelled to be a little helpful and remind members that we're speaking to Mr Daigeler's motion to have the Ministry of Housing in.

Mr Carr: Now that I've done my introduction, just to see where I was coming from on this, just so you appreciated where I was at --

The Chair: I understand the background was important.

Mrs Marland: He's doing okay.

Mr Carr: I thought I was being brief. When I was first elected, I never said much.

Mr Conway: That is stretching the truth a bit.

Mr Carr: Now I lost my train of thought. Okay, getting back to where we are, that's the frustration we have with this. In the scheme of things, you can appreciate where the frustration is coming from the opposition side on this, because legitimately, we do have some major, major concerns.

With that, Mr Chairman, now that you've made me feel bad, I'll defer to someone else.

The Chair: I didn't intend to do that, Mr Carr.

Mr Carr: I know. You wouldn't do it intentionally.

Mrs Marland: I think that when we're talking about the uniqueness of this bill, obviously, if you introduce a bill with 24 sections and you bring in 28 amendments of your own and the government brings in five amendments, it has to tell you something about the bill. If the bill were well drafted in the first place, you wouldn't have to bring in -- in my meagre nine years, as opposed to the 50 years that Mr Conway has been here, I have brought in a number of private bills and resolutions. I didn't bring in amendments, I can assure you.

Mr Mammoliti: None of them is on this list, Margaret. How come?

Mrs Marland: Because of how this bill has become so convoluted, you know what's interesting? We've got these 33 amendments -- I better be sure I've got the right number. We've got 33 amendments here and on Tuesday morning, I think some of you may recall, I said to Mr Wessenger that I had finally received his amendments, which I had asked for, on Monday. All last week I asked for his amendments and all last week his staff told my staff they were coming. What happened was that I met with Mr Wessenger, I think it was Monday night. I said, "I need your amendments, Paul, because I want to be able to see if they address my concerns when I come to deal with the bill, and if they do" -- Paul, you can confirm this -- "I'm not going to take up legislative counsel time drafting the same amendments as they've drafted already, because there's an expense and a cost to that in terms of my staff time plus legislative counsel time."

Paul said, "You can have my amendments tomorrow morning." The next morning, my staff phoned to confirm that they had our fax number and they would send them. They not only didn't send them that day; they didn't send them any other day. Every day my staff phoned, at least twice a day, to ask for these amendments. Finally, on Friday, I'm getting cross with my staff now, and I'm saying --

Mr Mills: Is this to the motion?

Mrs Marland: Yes, it is, because it's pointing out why we need Mr Daigeler's amendment.

When I finally said to my staff, "Where are Mr Wessenger's amendments?" they said, "We still haven't got them." I said, "What is his office phone number?" I phone Mr Wessenger's Queen's Park office and I get this recording that says, "Our office is closed today because our staff are on a staff development day." It's rather interesting to have a staff development day on a Friday when we've got all these Rae days going on. That in itself was interesting.

But I thought, never mind; I'll phone his constituency office. I phoned the constituency office; I get a different recording, a different message, which says, "Our office is closed today because our staff are at meetings outside of the office." So now I'm completely against the wall, because I can't even speak to either of his offices, any of his staff, because they've all got the day off.

Finally, I phoned the minister's office, I guess. Anyway, I've got it written down whom I spoke to. I said, "I need Mr Wessenger's home number because I need his amendments." I explained my frustration and then they said, "We can't give you his home number." I said, "We do exchange home numbers of our colleagues in the House." As far as I'm concerned, anybody in the House can have my home phone number; it's in the telephone book. I did say to the ministry person, in fairness to Paul, "I bet Mr Wessenger's number is listed in the book at his home, but I don't have a telephone directory for that area." The ministry wouldn't give me --

Mr Gary Wilson: You never thought of information?

Mr Mammoliti: Try 411. Because you're in Mississauga, they won't even charge you.

Mrs Marland: Because I don't know where Paul lives.

Anyway, the ministry was smart enough to get my message to Mr Wessenger. He phoned me on Friday night and said I would have the amendments. My office got the amendments on Monday and when I came in here on Tuesday morning, you will recall -- and I know Jeanette knows this, because I went over to ask her for them Tuesday morning because, as fate now had it, I had the amendments in my office but one of my two staff who were handling it was off ill. I asked for a set of these amendments. It was now Tuesday. Then Paul tells me they're only draft amendments and he said --

Mr Fletcher: Until they're introduced.


Mrs Marland: No, that isn't what he said. I wrote it down again. He said: "They're only draft amendments. My amendments may be changed." I can assure you that I have not studied these amendments and how they integrate with the bill, because I was not going to waste my time doing all this -- a comparison and study as they fit in with each section of the bill -- if they might be changed again.

The point I'm making in support of this motion is that this is the mess we are in. Again, I'm owning up honestly. I don't know how many people would come in and say they haven't read how these amendments integrate with the bill. I'm telling you I haven't done it, because I wasn't going to do it and then have changes and not be able to follow it.

That's the reason that we need some help from the ministry staff to tell us what's going on, because I know for a fact that the ministry staff -- and certainly the minister's staff, because we saw, as I said yesterday, these butterflies fluttering around Mr Wessenger. Mr Wessenger disappeared for a briefing yesterday with the staff, which is fine, I understand all that, but why should Mr Wessenger have the advantage of that briefing and not us? That's what Mr Daigeler's motion is about. He wants a briefing from the minister's staff, and that's only fair, in my opinion.

Mr Mammoliti: Margaret, when you phoned the office to ask for his phone number, did you ask for a briefing as well from the ministry?

The Chair: You've completed, Mrs Marland?

Mrs Marland: No.

Mr Mammoliti: Well, why not?

The Chair: No, no, no --

Mrs Marland: Because I was trying to get his amendments, of course.


Mrs Marland: What do you mean? At 5 o'clock?

The Chair: Order.

Mr Mammoliti: Mr Wessenger's done a lot of work off of committee hours. Why can't you?

The Chair: Order. I think Mr Wessenger now has the floor, followed by Mr Mills.

Mr Wessenger: You know, really, when I think the time we're wasting in this committee talking about matters that --

Mrs Marland: Just a minute. I've got --

Mr Wessenger: No, I have the floor now. Mr Chair, isn't that correct?

The Chair: That's correct.

Mr Wessenger: I have the floor and I think we're wasting a lot of time on this committee dealing with irrelevancies and matters about the aspects. I'm not going to get involved in disputing what Mrs Marland says. I'd have to disagree with her; that's what I have to say.

Mrs Marland: Your staff weren't off?

Mr Wessenger: I'm not going to get into that aspect. Unfortunately, I probably made an error. I tried to be helpful to opposition members and our members and provide them with information. Maybe I should learn my lesson that it doesn't help to try to be cooperative. I can assure her that the amendments she got on Monday I got on Monday, the same day. I can assure her of that. The reason they were draft is I had not reviewed them until Monday night. I put that on --

Mrs Marland: But Tuesday you told me they were draft and might be changed.

Mr Wessenger: Well, they're always subject to change.

Mr Mills: I want to speak directly to the motion. The motion of Mr Daigeler is about the benefits of having staff people from the Ministry of Housing comment, is it?

Mr Daigeler: I did say representatives of the Ministry of Housing. That's includes the parliamentary assistant.

Mr Mills: Okay. I heard Mr Wessenger make a statement that the bill is his bill, and he said that he's prepared to answer all the questions related to that bill. However, should members of the committee have some query that Mr Wessenger feels he can't answer or hasn't answered that adequately, then it is my understanding that staff will be called to the front to the microphone to elaborate on that. That, to me, is perfectly clear.

Having said that, I suggest that the question be put.

The Chair: You've moved that the question now be put?

Mr Mills: Yes.

Mrs Marland: Mr Chairman, on a point of order --

Mr Mammoliti: There's no point --

Mrs Marland: A point of order.

Mr Mammoliti: The question's been called.

The Chair: There's a point of order.

Mrs Marland: I don't think you can speak to a motion and then move that it be put. Would you please confirm that for me?

The Chair: Yes, you can. Mr Mills is in order. Mr Mills has moved that the question now be put. I find that to be in order. We've had a rather lengthy discussion of this with a number of members participating.

Mrs Marland: I'd like a recorded vote.

The Chair: All in favour of Mr Mills's motion that the question now be put? Mrs Marland has asked for a recorded vote. All in favour?

Mr White: What is the question?

The Chair: That the question now be put.

Mr Wessenger: On Mr Daigeler's motion.

Mr Daigeler: No, no, no, that the question be put.

The Chair: The issue is, should the question now be put? Call the names.


Fletcher, Mammoliti, Mills, Wessenger, White, Wilson (Kingston and The Islands).

The Chair: All those opposed?


Carr, Conway, Daigeler, Fawcett, Marland.

Clerk of the Committee: It's 6 to 5.

The Chair: The motion is carried.

Would the clerk read Mr Daigeler's motion, and we will now vote on it.

Clerk of the Committee: Mr Daigeler moved that we hear from the representatives of the Ministry of Housing on this bill.

The Chair: All those in favour?

Mrs Marland: A recorded vote.


Carr, Conway, Daigeler, Fawcett, Marland.

The Chair: All those opposed?


Fletcher, Mammoliti, Mills, Wessenger, White, Wilson (Kingston and The Islands).

Clerk of the Committee: It's 6 to 5, defeated.

The Chair: The motion is lost.

Now, clause-by-clause.

Mrs Marland: On a point of privilege, Mr Chairman: Mr Mammoliti asked why, when I phoned the ministry for Mr Wessenger's home phone number --

The Chair: No, no, no.

Mrs Marland: No, this is a point of privilege. I'm correcting what he has said. He said, why would I not have asked the ministry for a briefing? Why would I ask the ministry for the briefing if this is a private member's bill?

The Chair: Mrs Marland, you can of course correct your own record, but not someone else's.

Now, clause-by-clause.

Mr Fletcher: Why don't we adjourn and resume after lunch?

Mr Carr: I was just wondering, in light of what's gone on over the last little while here, and in fact it's almost 10 to 12, whether it might be advisable for us -- I'm trying to be as helpful and constructive as I can -- if we get some time and maybe adjourn till after lunch to allow the members to go through and proceed after lunch. I can either do that in a motion or I can try to be helpful --

The Chair: Are you moving adjournment?

Mr Carr: I was actually hoping to get a consensus without having to do that. I don't know if anybody else would like to speak on it. We've got 10 minutes.

Mr Gary Wilson: Come back at 1:30?

Mr Mills: No, I want to get going.

Mr Carr: I guess we didn't get a consensus. I won't move it.

The Chair: Fine. We will then commence the clause-by-clause examination. We'll commence with section 1. We will begin with an explanation from Mr Wessenger.

Mr Wessenger: Pursuant to Mr Conway's request, section 1 deals with the inclusion of "land intended and used as a site for a mobile home or a land-lease community home used for residential purposes, whether or not the landlord also supplies the mobile home." This includes land-lease communities under the provisions of the Landlord and Tenant Act.

At the present time mobile home parks are included under the Landlord and Tenant Act. There is some disagreement among lawyers on whether land-lease community homes are included. My view was that land-lease community homes were not included under the Landlord and Tenant Act. That was also the opinion of legislative counsel. As a result, that was the first amendment under the Landlord and Tenant Act that I brought forth, to ensure that we corrected what I consider had been a technical error in the previous act by not including land-lease community homes.

Also under this provision with respect to the Landlord and Tenant Act -- I promised Mr Conway I would explain this -- I was bringing forth some specific rights, additional rights, to owners of land-lease homes or mobile homes. These additional rights were (1) when the landlord withheld the --

Mrs Marland: On a point of order, Mr Chairman: Are you speaking to the amendment that's on yellow page number 1?

The Chair: He's speaking to section 1 of the bill.

Mr Wessenger: Yes. I'm doing as requested by Mr Conway. Also, he asked for a review of the amendment.

Mrs Marland: Oh, I see.

Mr Wessenger: The Chair suggested that we deal with this under section 1. I thought it was a helpful suggestion, because Mr Conway wanted to focus. What I'm going to do with respect to each act is to focus on the changes in those acts as we start, with the agreement of the committee.

Mrs Marland: I see. Thank you.

Mr Wessenger: The first improvement I indicated was the requirement that the landlord give written reasons for withholding consent. Under the Landlord and Tenant Act at present, landlords cannot unreasonably withhold their consent to assignment or subletting of a lease, but there's no requirement that they have to give those reasons in writing. I felt it was essential, particularly when we have the higher interest of a tenant who is the owner of his own home, that we ought to have the protection of written reasons. I must say that I've encountered this many times in my practice. The landlords withheld their consent for unreasonable grounds, there's nothing in writing and you had to bring an application under the Landlord and Tenant Act. By requiring it to be in writing, you're eliminating a lot of those illegitimate reasons for withholding consent.


Secondly, the bill deals with the first right of refusal, and the amendment that will be brought forward brings that first right of refusal in line with the standard practice generally in real estate areas and in other areas, and I think that's a good amendment.

The third change will be --

The Chair: You are speaking just to section 1 now?

Mr Wessenger: Well, I'm reminding Mr Conway with respect to signs.

The Chair: I think we'd better go with section 1.

Mr Wessenger: Okay. That perhaps sums up the comments. What I would suggest and ask the Chair to do with respect to section 1, which deals with two aspects -- there are subsections 1(1) and 1(2), and I'm recommending that we vote against 1(1). The reason for that is that we gave a different definition of "residential premises" for the purpose of section 128. Section 128 dealt with the reserve fund provisions, and since I will be making a motion to delete reserve funds, it's no longer required that we have a different definition of "residential premises" for the purpose of reserve funds. So it's a technical reason for voting against subsection 1(1), by reason of the section relating to reserve funds, 128.2 being deleted. I hope that's clear.

The Chair: To be clear, what we are talking about is subsection 1(1).

Mr Daigeler: Since we didn't get an opportunity to hear from the ministry yet, I guess we'll have an opportunity now. The first question that I have, and it's obviously brought forward by Mr Wessenger where he says there is confusion as to whether land-lease communities are included presently under the Landlord and Tenant Act or not. Because he feels there is some confusion, he wants to make sure that it is, and that's one of the reasons why he's bringing forward that bill.

I would like to hear from the ministry as to whether in fact there is confusion. Are they included or are they not included? I presume they're included, and in that case, if they're included, that's one less reason why we need the bill. I understand the concern, I think it's a legitimate concern, and perhaps while either the parliamentary assistant or his staff are speaking they would explain to me what the original intention was when it was drafted. Was there ambiguity? I presume land-lease communities would have been considered by the ministry as being included under the act, or are there any reasons why they shouldn't be included? If all that could be addressed, either by the parliamentary assistant or his staff, I'd appreciate that.

Mr Wessenger: I think with respect to the question I will ask legislative counsel, really, to respond to the question, since it's a legal question.

Mr Daigeler: I'm sorry, but --

Mr Wessenger: They are the experts with respect to --

Mr Daigeler: No, they're not.

Mr Wessenger: Yes, they are the experts. They are the experts with respect to legislation, Mr Daigeler.

The Chair: We will permit legislative counsel to give their opinion first. You may ask for another opinion after that, if you wish.

Ms Sibylle Filion: Well, I can only speak to the language of the bill. With respect to the application of the act, I would defer to the policy people from the Ministry of Housing.

The definitions of "mobile home" and "mobile home park" in the Landlord and Tenant Act are limited to homes that are meant to be movable or mobile, so that would, in other words, exclude land-lease community homes. However, on the substantive issue, I'd have to defer to the policy people from the Ministry of Housing.

Mr Wessenger: Mr Daigeler, if you want to ask a policy question, I'd be prepared to have the Minister of Housing --

Mr Daigeler: No. My question is not a policy question. My question is a question to the legal advisers of the Ministry of Housing, since it's their bill, and this one is going to be ultimately their bill as well.

Mr Wessenger: No, no. Mr Daigeler, it's not their bill, and you have to remember the way this process works. I have done a great deal of legislation, and the final arbitrators on the meaning of legislation given to legislative committees are the legislative counsel. They're the people who draft all legislation and determine the aspect of the meaning of that legislation. But if you want to ask a question, we have here counsel from the Ministry of Housing. If you'd like to ask them some questions, I'm quite prepared to --

Mr Daigeler: Mr Wessenger did raise another issue: Who's the last authority on what we pass here? I'm not a lawyer; I haven't been in court, thankfully. I'm not aware that legislative counsel has ever been called to give testimony, have they? Normally it's the ministries that are responsible for the particular bills and the interpretation of the bills. So I would expect that the Ministry of Housing, when it comes to their bills -- and I understand that right now it's Mr Wessenger's bill. But let's not kid ourselves: In order for this to pass in the House, it will have to have the support of the government. It will be part of the housing bills that the government carries, and the government and the Ministry of Housing will have to defend it and will have to enforce it and will have to monitor it and, later on perhaps, amend it.

Therefore, I'm sure there's a vital interest for the Minister of Housing and for her parliamentary assistant, who is here, to make sure that from a legal perspective we're doing the right thing. I think this is eminently fair, and my question is not really to Mr Wessenger but to the legal advisers of the Ministry of Housing, whether in their understanding, currently, land-lease communities are covered by the Landlord and Tenant Act. Now, that's not a complicated question.

Mr Wessenger: Mr Daigeler, if I might just rephrase that, I think the Landlord and Tenant Act would probably cover land-lease communities, but it's a question of whether those dealing with "residential premises" would be covered under the Landlord and Tenant Act. That's the question which I'd referred to the legislative counsel, and I accept the opinion of legislative counsel when I draft legislation. That's quite proper and it's the proper way to ask the legislative counsel that. But I will ask the Ministry of Housing for their views on the matter, the legal counsel.

Mr Michael Lyle: My name is Michael Lyle. I'm a legal counsel with the Ministry of Housing.

It's my interpretation of the Landlord and Tenant Act that it doesn't include land-lease communities at this time.

Mr Daigeler: I'm sorry?

Mr Lyle: That it does not include land-lease communities at this time. That's based on the wording of the definition of "residential premises" which is in the first section of the Landlord and Tenant Act.

Mrs Marland: What does it say?

Mr Lyle: It says "residential premises" means -- I'll just read you clause (b): "land intended and used as a site for a mobile home used for residential purposes, whether or not the landlord also supplies the mobile home."

Mr Noah Morris: I should add to that. From a policy --

The Chair: Introduce yourself, please.

Mr Morris: I'm Noah Morris, a policy adviser with the ministry. I was on the interministerial committee as well.

From a policy perspective our interpretation is correct, that land-lease communities are not mobile homes, but for purposes of zoning, many land-lease community homes are actually modular homes that are transportable and are put on pads and brought on trucks. So for many land-lease community homes that are not site-built, for purposes of zoning they are actually transportable and can be considered mobile.

The other issue is, under the interpretation of "residential premises," the Ministry of Housing is generally of the opinion that residential premises, even in illegal apartments, is a tenancy agreement and those are covered by the Landlord and Tenant Act.

Mrs Marland: Can I have a supplementary?

The Chair: Mr Daigeler, I think, has the floor.

Mr Daigeler: Sure.

Mrs Marland: Noah, I am somewhat familiar with the Municipal Act and the Planning Act, and I'm wondering if you could define what you mean in that answer when you say "for the purposes of zoning."

Mr Morris: For the purposes of a land-lease community being legally zoned, manufactured homes are often constructed with centre-beam construction and put on site, and for the purposes of zoning, they comply with the zoning that would apply to a mobile home park.

The Chair: Thank you. We will resume these hearings at 2 o'clock this afternoon.

The committee recessed from 1200 to 1417.

The Chair: The standing committee on general government will come to order. The business of the committee this afternoon is to examine clause by clause Bill 21, An Act to amend certain Acts with respect to Land Leases. When we finished this morning's discussions, we were speaking to the Ministry of Housing representatives. I believe Mr Daigeler had the floor and he was asking some questions.

Mrs Marland: I was actually in the middle of a supplementary to Mr Morris.

Mr Conway: Could we have the names of the two gentlemen again? I just wanted to mark it down, because I'm mentally infirm after noon.

Mr Daigeler: Especially after such a good lunch.

Mr Conway: A very good lunch, absolutely, with an old colleague who's happily retired and drawing a good pension.

Mrs Marland: Is that Mr Martel? I saw him in the cafeteria.

Mr Conway: No, it's Pat Reid, proving that superannuation in this business can begin early.

Mr Lyle: My name is Mike Lyle.

Mr Conway: I'm more interested in your colleague, actually.

Mr Morris: My name is Noah Morris.

Mr Conway: Noah Morris. Thank you very much, Mr Morris.

The Chair: We have Mrs Marland asking a supplementary. Is that where we were at?

Mrs Marland: Yes. Mr Morris, I may not have been very clear in my question, my supplementary to Mr Daigeler, but you were using the terminology "zoning" in reference to types of structure. I wondered if you could explain that a little for the committee, because in my experience zoning is a land use matter under the Planning Act. I wondered if you could explain your answer.

Mr Morris: The only clarification I was making was on a legal interpretation. The clarification was that for many land-lease communities, the classic retirement type of community, the homes themselves can be construed as being mobile, because they are constructed in such a way as to comply with local zoning standards. There are local zoning standards that apply to single-wide, double-wide and modular homes, and many of the retirement communities are built to comply to those standards. Under the Landlord and Tenant Act, those would be considered mobile homes; they could be considered mobile homes.

Mrs Marland: So what you're telling me is something I didn't know, that in some municipalities they use zoning bylaws to establish standards of structures?

Mr Morris: No, the standards of use.

Mrs Marland: That's what I thought. My point is that if zoning under the Planning Act is a land use, then how does it become a local zoning standard that qualifies a type of structure?

Mr Morris: The zoning would be a residential form of zoning.

Mrs Marland: Right.

Mr Morris: A subsection of that would be for modular homes or for single-wide or double-wide mobile homes.

Mrs Marland: Right. Is the single- or double-wide -- I'm just writing this terminology down -- modular building described in the Planning Act?

Mr Morris: It's not described in the Planning Act; it's described in the local zoning bylaws.

Mrs Marland: That's the point I'm making with you. So this is a local municipal option, to put that description into that municipality's local zoning bylaw?

Mr Morris: Yes, that's correct.

Mrs Marland: That's what I wanted to establish. It's not a provincial standard or a provincial statute's description.

Mr Morris: No, but obviously the authority to make local bylaws comes under the Planning Act.

Mrs Marland: Are you a municipal planner?

Mr Morris: I'm an urban planner.

Mrs Marland: What I would like to know, because I think it's very important to this legislation, is where in the Planning Act the reference is to mobile homes in terms of giving the authority to the municipality to have a zoning bylaw that pertains to standard of structure, whereas normally the only way that zoning bylaws refer to buildings is in the sense of a single-family -- in other words, zoning bylaws generally pertain to land use, correct?

Mr Morris: Yes, they do.

Mrs Marland: If they pertain to land use, the land use description usually falls into single, multiple and density arguments in terms of the land use. That's why I'm very interested in what you're saying about there being authority under the Planning Act for a municipality to pass a bylaw that pertains directly to a type of structure, because I haven't seen that and I'd like to see it.

Mr Mills: On a point of order, Mr Chairman: I'd ask you to rule on this. Has this got anything to do with what we're talking about here today, this bill?

Mrs Marland: I would hope so.

Mr Mills: I don't think so. I think it's off track.

The Chair: Thank you for your opinion, Mr Mills. Mrs Marland.

Mrs Marland: I think it's very important that we all understand the arguments for and against. I think it's important that we understand who has the authority here. If the authority is vested in the local municipality to pass a zoning bylaw that controls more than land use, and that is already established in the Planning Act, then I accept it.

I'm just saying that my municipal experience, and I'm not a planner but my municipal experience is 12 years, is that I never recall my municipality or even my regional municipality, which are Mississauga and the region of Peel, using the zoning bylaws for other than land use. If we're talking in your answer about zoning referring to local building standards -- because that's what we're talking about; we're talking about a type of building -- normally, and I say this for Mr Mills's benefit, when you get into the detail of the building, if you're talking about a type of structure --

Mr Mills: I was on the planning committee on council and I know all about that --

Mrs Marland: Well, then, you would understand, Gord --

Mr Mills: -- but this isn't relevant to this.

The Chair: Through the Chair, Mrs Marland.

Mrs Marland: I go back to Mr Morris. Normally, after a municipality defines "land use" in its secondary plan and its official plan, if you're going to go into more detail about, "This house can go on this piece of property" -- I think, with respect, Mr Mills, we're talking about houses on pieces of property in this bill and it's very important -- if you are arguing that this building, this kind of house, can go on this piece of property, if you want to then go further into defining what kind of building that is and you want to talk about cladding and height, rear-yard and side-yard setbacks and all those kinds of details, are they not normally addressed under the site plan process?

Mr Morris: In the case of zoning for modular housing, my understanding is that changing zoning for movable residential dwellings is what is being discussed under local zoning bylaws. What the local bylaws say is that this particular piece of land is zoned for modular, movable single; a subset of that would be single-wide and double-wide.

Mrs Marland: Okay. Can you tell me where there is a municipality that has that in its zoning, and can you tell me what section of the Planning Act gives it that authority?

Mr Morris: I don't have a copy of the Planning Act with me, so I can't tell you the section.

Mrs Marland: Okay.

Mr Morris: I believe the town of Newcastle zones that way, and Wilmot Creek has to follow a certain standard as a result. There are other municipalities as well.

Mrs Marland: I've heard in the deputations that certainly Wilmot Creek comes under site plan control, but I'm very interested when you're tying it in with a municipal zoning bylaw as well as a site plan.

Mr Morris: I'm aware there are lots of municipalities with that bylaw. I can't enumerate which ones; I'm sorry.

Mrs Marland: No, but you think Newcastle would be, because that's where Wilmot Creek is.

Mr Morris: I believe so.

Mrs Marland: Would you be able to -- well, you can't. This is the problem. We only have today, so I can't get an answer to this question, Mr Chairman, because obviously Mr Morris can't leave and go to get the Planning Act and come back to give an answer to this question.

What I may ask then is that I get an answer to the question about where the authority is vested in the municipality under the Planning Act to do that specific kind of zoning, and if I have it before we get into either committee of the whole in the House or -- maybe just on a point of procedure, if we do not finish all the amendments today, will the general government committee continue to sit when the House resumes on a weekly basis, dealing with these amendments until the bill is fully through the general government committee?

The Chair: The committee, Mrs Marland, operates under the normal rules of the Legislature. We will be considering this bill, along with other bills. As you would know, government bills take precedence over private members' bills. It would depend on what is in front of the committee how fast we will make progress on this particular piece of legislation. That is of course if we do not finish by 5 o'clock this afternoon.

Mrs Marland: Obviously Mr Morris would have time to get that answer for me.

Mr Daigeler: If I understood you right, legal counsel for the ministry said that they feel land-lease communities are not covered, that they're not included in the Landlord and Tenant Act. However, the policy adviser, I think, said that because -- that brings me to my simplistic question that I asked yesterday. There was more to it than just a simple question, because even the structures that are in land-lease communities can be considered mobile. Therefore, they could be, and probably are, covered under the Landlord and Tenant Act.

Also, I think you were referring to what we're discussing actually under Bill 120 where the Housing officials were telling us that even though the illegal basement apartments are illegal, nevertheless they most likely would be covered under the Landlord and Tenant Act if it ever came to the crunch, because basically people live there. Is that what you were saying, Mr Morris?

Mr Morris: That's a fair interpretation of it. It's true that permanent structures on leased land with foundations may or may not be covered. We don't think they are covered. But there are subsets within what we consider land-lease communities where they can be construed to be mobile and they would be covered. That would be dealing with mobile homes.


Mr Daigeler: Are you saying then that some buildings in land-lease communities, according to your opinion, are covered, but others that perhaps are more permanent are not covered? Is that what you're saying?

Mr Morris: I'm not a lawyer. That's a fair assessment of what we generally think is how it applies.

Mrs Marland: Mr Lyle is a lawyer.

Mr Daigeler: In any case, perhaps I should ask that of the lawyer.

Mr Wessenger: Perhaps you should ask that of the lawyers, if it is a legal question.

Mr Daigeler: It's not only a legal question. That's precisely why we want to hear from the Ministry of Housing, how it wishes to handle all this and whether the Ministry of Housing feels there's enough ambiguity to require a legal change and to require this bill, and I haven't received an answer yet. From what you're saying to me, I would conclude that you're really satisfied that basically, if it comes to the crunch, they are covered, and therefore from a Ministry of Housing perspective, we don't really need this bill. That is a policy question and therefore I can't ask that of the lawyer.

However, before you answer the policy question, I would like to ask a question of the lawyer, and that is, have there been any precedents? Has it ever gone to the court? Are there any kinds of precedents where it was tested whether the Landlord and Tenant Act applies to these houses?

Mr Lyle: I'm not aware of any case law on this subject. That's not to say there isn't some out there, because many landlord and tenant cases are not reported.

Mr Daigeler: Now how about an answer to my policy question, and I'm not sure whether perhaps the parliamentary assistant would want to answer that. Does the ministry feel there's enough ambiguity to change the law and possibly to do that through Bill 21?

Mr Gary Wilson: I'd prefer to hear what Mr Morris has to say first and then what Mr Wessenger --

Mr Mills: It's Mr Wessenger's bill, right?

Mr Gary Wilson: Yes.

Mr Conway: That's the way to become a minister, Gary.

Mr Gary Wilson: The way to help our government, though, is to get this through, so, Paul, you can respond.

Mr Wessenger: In answer to this question, I find it somewhat strange. I have indicated already on the record that I am of the opinion that these communities are not covered under the Landlord and Tenant Act. As a lawyer, I'm of that opinion. We also have the opinion of the lawyer from the Ministry of Housing that they're not covered under the act. Those are two legal opinions.

Mrs Marland: Internal.

Mr Conway: That's like asking me what I think "brief" means.

Mrs Marland: That's like asking the fox how he likes the hen-house.

Mr Wessenger: I'll be quite happy to explain from a legal point of view. If you want to hear a legal point of view, the aspect is that once you define "mobile home" within the Landlord and Tenant Act, by that very definition of "mobile home" you are in effect excluding anything that might be considered a land-lease community home. Once that particular definition was put into the act, that made it very clear that a land-lease community home was not included, and certainly all the legal opinions I've had from any lawyer I've ever discussed it with in connection with this matter have been that it's very clear that land-lease communities are not included.

I know there perhaps is some vagueness. What is a land-lease community and what is a mobile home park? There may be some sort of fringe area where there might be some area of ambiguity there, but it's very clear, for instance, in Wilmot Creek and in Sandycove Acres, which I am familiar with, that the homes there are permanent. They are very strongly attached to the land. Many of them have foundations, and I think it's very clear in the law that a home that has a foundation is very clearly not a mobile home.

Mrs Marland: What law is that in?

Mr Wessenger: I don't have my legal opinions in writing for you, Mrs Marland. You'll just have to take my word for it.

Mr Mammoliti: The Wessenger law.

Mr Conway: Go to the bank on that, Margaret.

Mr Wessenger: I would be very happy to put a legal opinion to a client on that. I'd go that far.

Mr Daigeler: I keep coming back to the ministry. I appreciate and I understand what Mr Wessenger says. I think he makes a good argument, and that's why it is a private member's bill that bears his name. Nevertheless, I keep coming back to the point that once this is adopted by the House, it will be in the Ministry of Housing's lap. I would like to hear from the parliamentary assistant.

At one point Mr Wessenger said this bill does not have the support of the government. I think he meant to say that this is not a government bill, but he did say it does not have the support of the government. So I do want to hear, either from the officials or from the parliamentary assistant, whether the Ministry of Housing feels comfortable with this approach and whether it feels that this is what's needed and that this is what should be done, and how it views this matter and whether it's going to be supported by it or if it wants further amendments or what. We haven't heard officially. We've heard from Mr Wessenger, but we have not heard from the Ministry of Housing, either through the parliamentary assistant, or if it wants to speak through the officials, that's fine with me, how it feels about this.

Mr Gary Wilson: I'd say yes, we are comfortable with this process; that's why we're participating. What Mr Wessenger has laid out is the interpretation that we're to decide on here. You've heard from him. We haven't heard from Mr Morris in the final, which is what I think we should be doing. I'm not sure what it takes to satisfy you, Mr Daigeler. What we are looking at here is Mr Wessenger's bill.


Mr Mills: We wouldn't be here.

Mr White: If it wasn't for his initiative.

Mr Daigeler: What I haven't heard, and I think Mr Conway asked that at one point earlier, is whether the government will support it when it's introduced in the House. It's a simple question.

Mrs Marland: On a point of order, Mr Chairman: Mr Mills said that we wouldn't be here if Mr Wessenger hadn't brought forward --

The Chair: What is --

Mrs Marland: This is the point of order. He said that we would not be here if Mr Wessenger had not brought forward this bill. In estimates two years ago, I asked the Minister of Housing about these communities, and she said --

The Chair: No, this is not a point of order. It might be an interesting point of information.

Mr Daigeler: I still place the question. I think it had been asked earlier, but there was no clear answer.

Mr Gary Wilson: It is Mr Wessenger's bill. We've looked at it. He wanted to make sure he's got it covered, and by listening to him, we think he has. So why don't we just look at the motion that's before us and deal with it on the merits of the argument which he's put forward?

Mrs Joan M. Fawcett (Northumberland): If the ministry doesn't support it, it doesn't go anywhere.

Mr Daigeler: Obviously, the parliamentary assistant doesn't want to give final approval to this bill. I think this has been clear from the beginning. It's quite clear that the Ministry of Housing wants to leave it open. It wants to hear how this thing is going and then leave its options open.


Mr Daigeler: That's fine, frankly. I think that's fair. But why don't you say so? Frankly, I'm in a similar position. I see some merit in what is being proposed, but I think there are some open questions still and it needs a bit more work. If that's the position of the Ministry of Housing as well, I think that's quite fair.

Mr Gary Wilson: The position is that we're here to discuss Mr Wessenger's bill. He's laid out, in response to your question, the way he's approached it and why he's put it in the bill the way it appears, what we're discussing now. What you seem to be looking for is something that's beyond what we need in this committee.

Mr Daigeler: I'll come back to it later.

The Chair: Mr Conway, you had some questions.

Mr Conway: Yes, not many, but just let me pick up at the last exchange. Let there be no confusion. If we complete this bill this afternoon, my impression is that this will be the law of the land by June. These troubling little questions may seem like a trifle to some people, but you should understand that everything I hear from the other side tells me that this is a bill that is going to receive the majority support of this Legislature.

Mr Fletcher: Maybe.

Mr Conway: There's no maybe about it. I may be proven wrong, and fair ball, but --

Mr Mammoliti: As it should be, Sean.

Mr Conway: I don't have any problem with that. That's as it should be, but my point is simply this: This is going to be our baby, so to speak, and to the extent that I'm going to be voting one way or the other, and since this probably is going to be the law of the province by the end of June 1994, based on my experience, I'd rather ask the questions now and get the questions answered to the best of our ability, because believe you me, friends, by not too many weeks from now there are going to be lots of questions that we haven't thought about and no deputant has advanced. Let me just say that.

Mr Morris, I was interested in something you said. You know something that none of the rest of us knows, and you're honour bound, of course, not to say a great deal, but I think I heard you say you have had some association with the famous interministerial committee of 1989, 1990, whatever that was. Correct?

Mr Morris: Correct.


Mr Fletcher: The secret document.

Mr Conway: Yes, the secret document. I understand that's an embargoed document and all the rest of it, but I understand that that document -- I'm now speaking to this particular section. My friend Daigeler has a much more sort of intricate theological mind than I do.

Mr Daigeler: Casuistic.

Mr Conway: No, that's kind of pejorative. You're not a Jesuit anyway. I just don't grasp a lot of these particulars, and I'm sorry for that, but I understand that the interministerial group produced a document that had about 120 recommendations, so I'm told now.

I'm going to be asking this question over again, because as I say, I'm a generalist with no expertise on this subject. But as I look at this section 1, what's left of the section 1, is there anything here in terms of the definition of "residential premises" that to the best of your knowledge fails to take account of any of the wisdom that's been generated out there in the last five years? I'm assuming there isn't, and I would like somebody from the ministry just to tell me that's not an unreasonable assumption.

Mr Morris: Without giving away anything that's in confidential documents --

Mr Conway: I don't expect you will.

Mr Morris: -- it's our opinion that there is sufficient ambiguity out there to warrant the inclusion of a definition of a land-lease community home and that there's sufficient ambiguity to clarify that under the Landlord and Tenant Act.

Mr Conway: I appreciate that and that is helpful. When you and brother Lyle sit down and compare policy and legal inputs, you're reasonably satisfied that within human competence this is about as close as we're going to get to language that addresses both the problems that are out there and the reality that's also out there?

Mr Morris: Is that a question for me, as someone who's advising on this, or is it --

Mr Conway: You're paid to advise Her Majesty, and you are the people who are going to get to answer a lot of these questions in a few weeks' time. They may be trifles. They may be completely irrelevant questions, and I'm happy to have you tell me that. As I say, you get paid the big bucks. You're going to get to give some answers. I may be in your office in two months' time with a delegation from Jawbone, Ontario, who are going to find out and, "Boy, there was a situation out there that nobody knew about and I'm here to present it to you."

I just want to know, to the best of your knowledge, in consultation with your legal colleague, that this language is going to address both the ambiguities that are there in the existing legislation and will deal with the various categories of mobile home parks and land-lease communities and all the rest.

Mr Morris: I'll defer the legal opinion to Michael, but I would say that from my personal perspective I feel this will address that ambiguity.

Mr Conway: Good. That's fine. You obviously agree.

Mr Lyle: I'm comfortable with the language.

Mr Conway: Good. That's fine. I appreciate that.

Mrs Marland: A few minutes ago, Mr Wessenger said that buildings with foundations are not mobile homes. First of all, Mr Wessenger, do you wish to clarify that statement?

Mr Fletcher: He wasn't listening to you. He was listening to me. I'm sorry.

Mrs Marland: That's all right, Mr Fletcher. I don't mind.

Mr Wessenger: I heard the question.

Mrs Marland: I don't mind you doing that. That's fine. I thought this was Mr Wessenger's bill and he would be interested in the question.

The Chair: I think the Chair minds. Could we just keep the conversation flowing between the members.

Mr Wessenger: I am clearly of the opinion that a home on a permanent foundation is not a mobile home. I'm clearly of that opinion.

Mrs Marland: Is a permanent foundation one that does or does not include a basement, in your opinion?

Mr Wessenger: In my opinion, it does not have to include a basement in order to be a permanent foundation.

Mrs Marland: Okay, so you would agree that a structure on a flat concrete bed or envelope pad is or is not a permanent --

Mr Wessenger: That is one of the areas where you could have, depending on the degree of attachment -- the law with respect to the whole question of whether it's mobile or removable is that it depends on how it's attached, so you have to look at the degree of attachment in order to determine whether or not it in fact is a mobile home. It's conceivable, if it's something you can very easily disconnect and pick up, that it could be a mobile home.

Mrs Marland: Would you agree then that if it was on foundations from which it could be detached or attached, you also have the same answer as on a concrete pad?

Mr Wessenger: The law generally is the degree of attachment of the premises. Is it removable? How easily removable is it? That's basically the test, and you might want to confirm that even more with -- I don't know whether legal counsel would be more up to date on this than I, but from a practising real estate lawyer that is definitely the test, the degree of attachment and how easily it can be removed, more of a functional test rather than a question of --

Mrs Marland: Structure?

Mr Wessenger: Yes. The functional test is very relevant in determining whether or not it's mobile.

Mrs Marland: Mr Lyle, would you like to give your opinion?

Mr Lyle: I think I can agree with Mr Wessenger on the comments he made. Do you need any more elaboration?

Mrs Marland: His statement is that you define the attachment by the ability to remove the structure.

Mr Lyle: That's correct, yes.

Mrs Marland: You agree with that.

Mr Lyle: I do.

Mrs Marland: If I took you out to University Avenue, I could show you a century-old building which is probably about a 3,000-square-foot building, two storeys -- it may even be two and half storeys -- which was in another location, with a basement, and that building was moved to that location.

If the definition is whether or not you can pick it up and move it, I would suggest respectfully, and I am not a lawyer, that it is possible to move structures of any size that you're ambitious enough to move. Whether or not it's on a foundation that goes below the surface of the ground or whether it's an on-grade concrete pad or whether or not it has a basement beneath it, the mobility of a structure is possible.

What I would suggest the answer should be, not as a lawyer, is the degree of desire as to whether or not a structure wants to be moved. I don't understand how two lawyers in this room can say as pure as black and white that buildings with foundations are not mobile homes. I'm sorry.

Mr Conway: Margaret, you sound Catholic.

Mr Mammoliti: There's nothing wrong with Catholics, is there, Sean?

Mr Conway: I didn't say that.


Mr Lyle: I suppose if you use that argument you could say that any building is a mobile home. I think it's all a question of degree as to how difficult it is to move the building and what is the likelihood of that building being moved. It really is a question of degree, but you're correct, any building can be moved with enough effort.

Mrs Marland: My concern with this part of this clause in this bill and the comments that I've heard is around the fact that we're about to pass something into law in this province which will be from then forward the benchmark for that particular statute as a reference to what people can or cannot do. What concerns me is that I don't hear anybody saying there is a precedent of an opinion that establishes whether or not buildings with foundations are mobile homes and I think that's what we need.

With all due respect to Mr Wessenger, it's his bill, or that's what Mr Wessenger is telling us. He's also telling us that he has experience in real estate law. What I am saying is that I would like an opinion, Mr Chair, or even a reference to a case that has established that buildings with foundations are not mobile homes. If I can get that opinion, I'd be willing to proceed with the amendment to subsection 1(1) of the bill. But until I get that I think none of us in this room have a right to vote on something without that qualification.

Mr Wessenger: I think we're really getting absurd arguments here, in a sense.

Mrs Marland: In your opinion.

Mr Wessenger: The reality is that the law with respect to fixtures to land is a complex area of law determined by the courts. I think it's fair to say that in the past most homes in land-lease communities would have been considered to be not mobile homes. I think that's fair to say. Whether you can design a type of modular home that can fit into that category, that's possible -- I think it's possible to design that -- but the degree to which most modular homes in the land-lease communities are attached are in my opinion such as to make them not mobile homes.

If we look at the question of the law relating to fixtures you'll find that it's not only a question of the degree. There is another legal factor we should be talking about. There is another factor other than the whole question of the degree of attachment and the degree of damage. There's also the whole question of the intention of the parties. If something is put on with the intention that it be movable, then of course that's an argument that it's chattel, not part of the fixture.

The intention is a factor, but I think it's fair to say that in most land-lease communities I would expect that the intention would be clearly established that these not be movable units, and that's very much a factor in determining whether or not they would be mobile homes. So the intention is a factor as well as the degree of attachment. I cannot anticipate any court deciding that homes that are quite strongly attached and where there's no intention to make them movable would ever be not considered part of the land and a fixture to the land.

The Chair: Before we go to Mrs Marland again, I'm just a little concerned that we're getting a little beyond ourselves. We're dealing with section 1, but subsection 1(1) does not deal with the present conversation. It's subsection (2) that we're talking about, Mrs Marland. We'll adopt the whole section or not when we get that far. I was just concerned that you'd referred to the wrong subsection.

Mrs Marland: I appreciate, Mr Chairman, your pointing that out, but in subsection 1(1) we are dealing with the definition of "residential premises." If we are referring anywhere in this act to residential premises we'd better know to what we are referring.

If we accept Mr Wessenger's profound argument about the land-lease community type of building that may or may not be on foundations and may or may not be on basements, then I would like to take him to the other type of development where in fact some of our deputations did refer to arguments under the chattels, using that term, "chattel," and again, I don't pretend to know what that defines. But if we go to that other type of development where we also have structures that have very elaborate foundations, maybe not basements but very elaborate foundations, and especially additions to them like garages -- I don't consider a carport a tremendous structure as an addition to a building, but certainly garages and other rooms -- I would respectfully suggest to Mr Wessenger that they too are less than mobile. I'd like to know how he argues it on that side of the question.

Mr Wessenger: The question asked, what about the fact that many of the structures in so-called mobile home parks are on foundations? I think the answer to that is that it's clear that land-lease communities are not necessarily mobile home parks, but on the other hand, it could be very well argued that all mobile home parks would be land-lease communities. I think that's fair to say.

I think if we were starting over again and we hadn't defined "mobile home park" in the original Landlord and Tenant Act, if we were going to redraft the whole Landlord and Tenant Act -- when I originally started on this bill I was told by legislative counsel, "You can't redraft the whole Landlord and Tenant Act" -- if we were doing that process, we might have done it a different way. But seeing we already had the concept of a mobile home park introduced in the Landlord and Tenant Act, the logical way of correcting the problem is to add in the concept of a land-lease community. It's quite possible that mobile home parks might be deemed to be land-lease communities. I think that's a fair comment.

Mrs Marland: I don't see a definition in your bill that says mobile home parks are land-lease communities. Are you telling us that the intent of your bill is to say that land-lease communities and mobile home parks are all the same?

Mr Wessenger: The intent of my bill is to ensure they're both treated equally so there would be no distinction of whether you're in a land-lease community or in a mobile home park.

Mrs Marland: No, that wasn't the question. I wasn't asking you --

Mr Wessenger: That's the intention of the legislation and that's the way it was drafted.

Mrs Marland: Excuse me, I wasn't asking you if you wanted them treated the same. I was asking you if in your opinion there is no difference between a mobile home park or a trailer park and a land-lease community in terms of the fixed property, which is the land, and the added property, which is the structure. Are you saying that in both kinds of communities this is all the same?

Mr Wessenger: I think one could make a distinction between the two, and the distinction I would make is the sense that in many of the mobile home parks, many of the structures are such that they are movable, strictly the single-wide variety. Where you get into a mobile home park that has a double-wide, you're getting very close to the situation that you'd have in a land-lease community.

Mrs Marland: It's very interesting to listen to you, because you've said some are movable --

Mr Mills: It's more interesting than listening to you.

Interjection: That's not nice.

Mr Conway: Gordie, don't abandon your gallantry.

The Chair: Interjections are out of order.

Mr Mills: There's a limit to what a human can take.

Mr Conway: It's Lent; 39 days left.

Mrs Marland: Some are movable in the trailer and mobile home park, so what you're also saying is that some cannot be moved. Correct?

Mr Wessenger: Some of the structures I've seen in a few parks, not many, have been very close, and usually a very limited number have been close to what you'd would find in some of the land-lease communities.


Mrs Marland: Would you agree that some of those that can't be moved might be those that are on some kind of foundation?

Mr Wessenger: Yes, possibly on some kind of foundation.

Mrs Marland: That totally destroys your earlier statement, where you said buildings with foundations are not mobile homes.

Mr Wessenger: I would generally say that's the case. One could design a foundation for a movable unit; that's quite possible.

Mrs Marland: Would you agree, then, that if some are movable and some are not, yet all of them are on leased pieces of property, when you want them all treated the same, that is not equality because of the fact that they are different?

Mr Wessenger: I do not see the difference with respect to the Landlord and Tenant Act, with respect to having rights under that act, whether you happen to live in a mobile home park or whether you happen to live in a land-lease community. Both deal with the situation where you have the home owned by the resident and the land owned by a land owner. From a legal perspective, I don't see a difference.

There may be a difference in the degree to which one could move the structure. There would be a difference there, but that's the only difference. There's also a degree, of course, in the amenities. The reality is that land-lease communities tend to have more expensive units, better services, be much closer to a single-family residential area. In fact, some of the land-lease communities are exactly the same as single-family residential areas, the same as any other subdivision. You wouldn't notice a difference, going into some of these land-lease communities, from a normal subdivision.

Mrs Marland: In your wish to treat everybody equally, where is your consideration in this definition in subsection 1(1) of the act for the people who own the property where the homes are either mobile or immobile? You want to be equal, you want to be fair, you want to treat everybody fairly, but you're actually only looking at one side of the ownership, in my opinion. I want you to tell me whether I'm right or wrong, because I'd like to see where it is that you're looking to the rights of the person who might own the trailer park.

Mr Wessenger: I find it difficult to understand what your question is, but let me just --

Mrs Marland: Do you want me to rephrase it?

Mr Wessenger: No, you don't need to rephrase it.

Mr Mills: Please, please, mercy.

Mr Wessenger: That's right.

At the present time, if you happen to live in a mobile home park and the landlord wants to evict you, the landlord has to go under the provisions respecting residential premises under the Landlord and Tenant Act. If you live in a land-lease community and the landlord wants to evict you, you don't have any of the protections of that act at all. You might say, "Why is it we haven't had more problems arising?" The reason you haven't had problems arising is that, first of all, most of the owners of these parks say, "We will consider ourselves bound by the Landlord and Tenant Act," because it would not be in their self-interest not to do that.

The other aspect is that the amount of investment that people make in a land-lease community is very large with respect to buying one of these investments. If an owner attempted to say, "We're just going to exercise our strict rights under the Landlord and Tenant Act," they would create such a bad impression of that community that nobody would buy in that community. It's the bargaining position between the purchasers of the homes in the land-lease community and the owners of the homes who make sure that you don't have the same abuses in these parks, generally, that you would have in a mobile home park.

That is the reason why we haven't had too many cases under the Landlord and Tenant Act with respect to the land-lease communities, because generally, as I said, the owners have an interest with respect to making it a desirable place to purchase in and to live.

The other thing we should be aware of is that the profit in a lot of these parks is probably made not so much from the operation of them, but a lot of it's made from the development of them and then the selling of the modular home, and even in the case of mobile homes, with respect to the sale of the mobile home.

Mrs Marland: When this amendment is moved -- oh, it has been moved -- to vote against subsection 1(1) --

Mr Wessenger: This relates purely to reserve funds. It's a technical amendment that has to be made, because there's going to be an amendment that will delete reserve funds.

Mrs Marland: Is that amendment in here?

Mr Wessenger: Yes, it is. We will probably be voting against that section too, I should say. It won't be an amendment. It will be section 128.2, on page 4 of the bill, section 128.2, reserve fund. It will be an amendment actually on section 12. The amendment will be to delete sections 128.2, 128.3, 128.4, 128.5, 128.6 and 128.7. The only section that will remain in 128 is 128.1.

Mrs Marland: In order to get this question, I have to ask, because Mr Wessenger has mentioned 128.2. The interesting thing about 128.2, as opposed to the section we're on now, is that there is a reference to non-seasonal mobile homes, and that isn't in section 1, is it? Is there a reason for that?

Mr Wessenger: That whole section is being deleted.

Mrs Marland: Yes, I understand that.

Mr Wessenger: I should also indicate that there will be an amendment in front of you that will also designate all reference to non-seasonal homes. I don't like to discuss all sections at one time, but I'll be very happy to explain why that is happening.

Mrs Marland: But I find it very interesting that when you're dealing with the definition of "residential premises," in the first section of the bill is the first time you talk about residential premises. I know you're wanting us to vote against this now. But the point is that it's very interesting that you didn't make any reference then to non-seasonal mobile home parks, and yet you saw fit to introduce that further down in the bill. Don't you think that's interesting?

Mr Wessenger: If you look at section 2, you'll find there's a definition of "non-seasonal mobile home park," and if you look at amendment number 3, I think it is, there's a motion that the definition of "non-seasonal mobile home park" be struck out. I don't want to get into that, but the reason for moving that one will be that it would create three classes and therefore it would create too much confusion with respect to the law.

Mrs Marland: I understand that, but was it a mistake that the definition wasn't introduced at the beginning of your bill?

Mr Wessenger: No, it was not. It's not relevant, really.

Mrs Marland: It sure is relevant to people who have non-seasonal operations, I would think, like the gentleman who is having that terrible time out at Cayuga.

Mr Wessenger: With the amendments, my bill does not change the definition of --

Mr Mills: On a point of order, Mr Chairman: I've listened to this going on now for goodness knows how long.

Interjection: What's your point?

Mr Mills: My point of order is this: My community is seeking speedy expedition of this bill and I see nothing that the member for Mississauga South is talking about but stalling. I suggest to you, Mr Chair, that you rule that we get on with clause-by-clause and come to grips with what we're here for.

The Chair: Thank you, Mr Mills. Mrs Marland.

Mr Mammoliti: I guess you're not ruling.

The Chair: I think I did. Mrs Marland.

Mrs Marland: Mr Chairman, with this motion, are we getting to debate -- this motion deals with subsection -- actually, is the wording correct here? It says subsection 1(1). Is that correct to refer to that as a subsection when it's a section of the bill?

Mr Wessenger: Yes, subsection 1(1) is correct. These were all prepared by legislative counsel, who are the experts in the proper way of dealing procedurally.

Mrs Marland: Okay. That's good. Are we going to then move on to subsection 1(2)?

Mr Wessenger: Not until we vote.

Mr Daigeler: Not yet.

Mrs Marland: No, but I mean after we deal with this.

Mr Wessenger: Yes, we will.


The Chair: It has been the tradition of Chairs to allow a very broad-ranging debate on section 1 of bills. As we go through the bill, the debate that is permitted to sections is generally seen to be more restrictive. It would be the Chair's preference that we deal with 1(1) and then move to 1(2), but I'm fully prepared to listen to a rather broader debate on the whole issue at this point.

Mrs Marland: I'll leave it till we get to (2), then.

Mr Daigeler: I don't think my question is that broad, but it is a little bit broader than just subsection 1(1) because I still have some questions for the ministry and to the ministry officials. I guess I have to do it now in clause-by-clause because we didn't have the opportunity earlier. I'll ask that question of the ministry, and whoever wants to answer is fine with me.

Several of the presenters said that it would be more appropriate to have separate acts, that there should really be a separate act for land-lease communities to deal with their problems and perhaps a different act for mobile home communities and so on. I'm wondering, from the ministry perspective, how does the ministry feel about the idea, the concept of separate acts?

Obviously, if we're passing this one, you won't be looking at separate acts for a long time, because knowing the process, it's rather complicated. If the ministry feels that it would be better to have separate acts, should we wait for that? If they feel no, separate acts are not a good idea, why are they not a good idea? This has been brought forward several times during the public hearings.

Mr Gary Wilson: If I may answer that, I'd like to say that what we think is the proper approach is to deal with Mr Wessenger's bill, which addresses a problem that he's identified, and certainly many of the presenters were here urging us to pass this legislation, that it couldn't be done soon enough. That was, to my mind or to my ears, the preponderance of the presentations. This is what we should be looking at, this bill, and I don't see why we should be looking at the other. But I'd like to hear what Mr Wessenger has to say, whether he considered that in his approach to the issue.

Mr Wessenger: I'd not be pushing this bill if I thought we had the imminence of a general bill. As I said, in the long run we're all dead. We may have a general bill at some stage, but knowing legislative priorities and having just been through one -- my first piece of legislation in the health area took about 12 or 13 years to get through from beginning to end -- I think that we might have a general bill maybe within the next 10 years, but --

Mr Conway: You're a lucky man that exercise didn't kill you, as it did one other predecessor.

Mr Wessenger: Right. I just don't want to wait for 10 years. Clearly, I would love to have a general bill and I'd like to see the ministry proceed to it in the future, but I think, from a realistic timetable, certainly not for several years. Maybe I shouldn't say this, but I think this whole area could do with not just the whole question of whether you have a separate bill; maybe we should look at the whole question of landlord and tenant again at some time, and home ownership and all these aspects, and come up with comprehensive legislation dealing with the whole thing.

That might be a better approach, but I don't see a comprehensive bill being imminent, and the problems are so great at the present time that, as I said, let's deal with a problem we have.

My act, I think, will be a spur quite frankly to perhaps dealing with some other problems too. That's why I hope it will be supported. It will, I believe, be a spur to maybe looking at a solution to other problems; at least I hope it will be. I'm not finished with my interest in this area and I certainly will be pursuing other aspects for improvement as time goes by.

Mr Daigeler: I appreciate that. In this paper that was prepared, with thanks, by the researcher in a very limited amount of time, the OLLF -- that stands for Ontario Land Lease Federation -- asked the government: "Prepare a new piece of legislation that encompasses only mobile home parks and land-lease communities. The existing Landlord and Tenant Act, the Rent Control Act, the Rental Housing Protection Act and other acts have all attempted to fit our communities into existing legislation and it is not working."

I am just not sure that the bill we have in front of us -- and I'm looking for some reassurance from the ministry again; obviously, Mr Wessenger believes it. I'm not that sure yet that Bill 21 will in fact solve the problems that have been identified here: for example, the latest group that came to us and was showing us the pictures of how terrible their facility is and the landlord wants to sell and he's not doing anything. As far as I understand it, since this bill is not going to be retroactive, this landlord could still go ahead and sell his park and the tenants would just be in the same situation.

Perhaps I'm wrong. I'm looking for some clarification. I'm just concerned and I'm looking for some reassurance that in fact this bill will do the job. I hope for some opinion from the Ministry of Housing.

Mr Wessenger: I'd like to answer that one. I won't answer specifically with respect to this park, but let's just say what the general scenario is with respect to parks in my area. My area has been an area of rapid economic development. In 1989 or 1988, that era, we had three trailer parks in the area. All of them were seen as very good areas for the development of housing other than trailer parks. The owners of all these areas, two of them anyway, received offers of purchase with respect to their lands, and notices of termination were sent out to the tenants on the basis that the change of use was going to occur.

What of course happened was that the recession intervened. It became no longer profitable at that time to proceed with either the purchase of the lands or the development of the lands, so these people were left, shall we say, remaining in possession. But as soon as the economy turns around we can expect that new notices of termination will be sent out, the matter will be proceeded with, the lands will be redeveloped and all these individuals will lose their equity in their homes.

What my act, the housing protection act, will do is require that if the developer wishes to get rid of these people, terminate their tenancies, he'll have to go to the municipality and ask the municipality to pass a bylaw under the housing protection act to allow the development to proceed and the termination to occur.

First of all, the municipality is going to have that control over the termination. If the municipality decides to go ahead with permitting that termination to occur for redevelopment, then the residents will have the right to appeal to the Ontario Municipal Board against that decision of the municipality.

We're not doing an absolute prohibition in here. We're having a process that will have to be gone through. The reality of this will be that people who want to redevelop mobile home parks -- because basically those are the ones that are under siege. I don't think land-lease communities are ever going to be in this particular situation. That will mean that the owners of these mobile homes will have a good bargaining position with respect to ensuring, if the redevelopment is going to occur, that they get adequate compensation for that redevelopment. I see this as a major step forward in protecting the equity of people who live in these mobile home parks. It's not absolute, but I see it as a major protection, a major advantage for them. As I said, I think it's the most important part of this bill.


Interestingly enough, it will also apply to land-lease communities in the sense that with the amendments to the Landlord and Tenant Act, it will again give people, when their lease expires in a land-lease community, greater security of tenure. That will assist and hopefully make the homes more marketable. I think there's a general agreement that everybody would like to see more marketability with respect to these developments and I think the desire for comprehensive legislation is in order to make this type of development more marketable.

I'm going on about the bill in general, but the other aspect of this legislation under the rental housing protection aspect is the fact that exemptions will be made with respect to conversions to condominiums. That's an important component of reform in this area, having a new Condominium Act passed so that you can have land condominiums. I think that's a very good move. Those conversions will be permitted under the Rental Housing Protection Act, as will be the conversions to what we'd call equity co-ops, where the home owners have control of the park. It's designed --

Mrs Marland: That's after they buy it, right?

Mr Wessenger: Yes, that's right, if they have a co-op, buy it, just like an equity co-op situation. Obviously, I would like to see complementary policies developed with respect to the question of assisting conversions to co-ops, at least in some types of co-ops anyway, with respect to some of the perhaps more problematic parks. I think it's one of the longer-term solutions. I'm not the Minister of Housing so I can't make those decisions. I can only give advice, and that's what I would intend to do in this area.

Mr Daigeler: I appreciate what you just said, Mr Wessenger. I think those two points that you're interested in above all, this inclusion of the land-lease communities and the inclusion under the housing protection act of the parks, are probably a good idea. Obviously, it's an area that needs some attention. I'm just wondering: Why do we have to have such a long bill in order to do those two things, which seem to be relatively reasonable? That's one question.

The other one: Does the landlord, in case this passes, also have an opportunity to go to the Ontario Municipal Board if, let's say, the municipality decides no, they're not going to redevelop this? I have a park that's smack in the middle of Nepean. It's actually industrial-commercial. As soon as the recession is over, I'm sure the land is going to become extremely valuable again. If that park gets redeveloped or the owner wants to redevelop it and the city says no, what recourse is there for the landlord, obviously whose investment might be dramatically reduced if there's no redevelopment?

Mr Wessenger: To the last question, the answer is very easy. Any party has the right to appeal to the Ontario Municipal Board, whether it's the land owner or whether it's the residents, equally.

The first question related to --

Mr Daigeler: Why do you need such a long bill?

Mr Wessenger: I think you'll find that once all the amendments are made, the bill will be considerably shortened. You will not find it quite as long a bill, quite frankly. It will be substantially shortened as a result of the amendments, but remember this: You're dealing with an area of law, particularly the Landlord and Tenant Act, that's somewhat complex. Therefore, even a simple change requires maybe three or four sections to effect that change because of its relation to other sections. But once it's in final form, it will be a more compact bill. I think the problematic areas will have been eliminated. I think it will be a very tight piece of legislation.

Mr Daigeler: One final question before I pass it on to someone else: I've made it clear several times that I do think some important areas have been identified as a problem, and we want to do something about it. At the same time, several of the owners of these communities or lands came to us and said very clearly that if this goes through, and I'm quoting here from one of the submissions, this bill "will put successful parks at risk" and "will not encourage tenants to purchase their parks" and "will not encourage development of future mobile home parks."

I'm not sure whether the owners would have made the same statement if they had known that Mr Wessenger was going to withdraw the provision about the reserve fund. I'm not sure whether the owners are going to be as strong about this position after the amendments have been put forward by Mr Wessenger. Nevertheless, I would like to hear, again from the ministry, whether it feels that the housing provision, the housing options that mobile home parks and the land-lease communities provide, because they are quite affordable, are going to be threatened in any way by this bill. I think that would be the reverse effect of what we're all trying to do.

I think we're all agreed that this is a housing option that's still there and that should still be encouraged. I don't think we want to pass a bill that's going to make it tougher for people to have affordable housing options. I want some assurance, hopefully from the government, because I'm sure Mr Wessenger is convinced that this won't do it. The government has a broader responsibility. I would like to hear from the government and be reassured that it doesn't see this as a threat to the availability of these affordable housing options.

Mr Wessenger: I think I should have a chance to respond to that first, and if the Ministry of Housing wants to add anything, I'm sure it's quite welcome to and I'd invite the policy person.

Mr Conway: The alpha and the omega are in the same band anyway.

Mr Wessenger: As I said, my bill was much more ambitious initially. I think the influence of the Minister of Housing is to reduce it.

Mr Conway: You've both been undressed here today.

Mr Wessenger: First of all, if we look at the Landlord and Tenant Act amendments, I can't see any economic impact with respect to the amendments under the Landlord and Tenant Act, quite frankly. They are basically designed to hit at the bad actors in the situation. I don't think hitting at the bad actors is going to create a problem for anyone. There has been some concern expressed about the sign aspect. That's the only aspect I've heard of by the members of the land-lease community with respect to the Landlord and Tenant amendments specifically. We'll be discussing that later and we'll have to see what happens in that situation.

With respect to the Planning Act change, the only impact there is that you're going to require basically site plan approval, which most municipalities now do require. In view of all the problems that have occurred and cost to people as a result of poorly planned developments, I don't think there's any question that requiring them to be developed under good planning is going to enhance them as a living choice. Good developments are going to encourage that in municipalities. Where you have good parks, people will say: "They are good. They do work. We're more willing to accept them."

With respect to the Rental Housing Protection Act, as I said, it's a question of weighing the values. There's no question that for land owners it's going to mean they're going to have to share some of their profits with respect to tenants. But as I said, it's a question of priority. Who has priority, the equity of the home owner in these parks or the land owner who wishes to just get rid of the land and have it redeveloped? That's a value choice, and I very clearly made my choice in favour of the equity of the home owners.


I think it also will be beneficial that it encourages the conversion of parks to condominiums and equity co-ops. I think that is a good solution and I would hope we will have complementary policies developed to encourage that type of conversion.

I don't know if the ministry wants to add anything. I wanted the opportunity to express my views on this because it's my bill, but if the Ministry of Housing wants to add anything from a policy perspective --

Mr Conway: Can I ask a supplementary to Paul on that?

The Chair: Has Mr Daigeler completed? I have Mr Conway's name next on the list.

Mr Daigeler: Is nobody from the ministry going to say anything? It would have to be Mr Wilson, I think. If he comes back, perhaps I can ask him.

Mr Conway: I don't have the expertise that others have on this subject, but I'm quite intrigued listening to Mr Wessenger's response, which was quite coherent and cogent. I'm still left then with the situation that Mr Daigeler raises. I'm sitting here trying to imagine -- it's clearly a choice of values, and you've made that case, but what do you do in a situation where you get a case like the Nepean case to which Mr Daigeler referred, or some other situation where there is a very real clash between the interests of the tenants and the interests of the land owner?

As a practical matter, surely what happens -- and you're right. You say, "Well, those can be arbitrated by the municipal board." I can just imagine, however, a situation where years pass --

Mr Mills: Fast-track.

Mr Conway: Fast-track perhaps. I'm trying to imagine what happens in those situations, and there will be some, where you're going to have these trailer parks in places where the -- just regional development. We had the group from Stittsville. I'm not going to dig out the information. There were two units; there was a 54 and a 10. The 54 seemed to be kind of together in an area that appeared to be, from what I know of the area, and I know it reasonably well, likely to be left alone for some time, but the other 10 are sitting out there in an area that's zoned highway-commercial, and with any kind of activity in the next little while, I can imagine tremendous development pressures.

Maybe the development pressures will be so great that nobody will want to live there, but on the other hand I can imagine a situation where people say: "It has been home for a number of years, and, yes, it's getting pretty noisy around here, but where else do I go, given my investment in my trailer? I don't own the land." How do you arbitrate this?

Maybe it's not something that we can solve here today, but I can see a situation where the values of the trailer owners and the land owners are so fundamentally opposed and where the only mechanism for arbitration is some kind of a municipal board hearing that may, again as a practical matter, really discriminate against the mobile home owners.

Conway owns the land. He's a fat-cat developer, and these 10 or 20 or 35 or 62 people living in those trailers, who own the trailers, just haven't got any kind of capacity to raise $50,000 to retain that smart Paul Wessenger, who's an expert on this and who could fight the battle and win the day at the OMB. The whole thing just isn't worth that kind of expenditure of money and time. Do we need to concern ourselves with --

Mr Wessenger: I'll answer this question more from a perspective as if I was acting for the owner of a park. How would I approach it, knowing the law's in effect? I suppose the first thing you say is: "Let's negotiate with the people. What are you willing to take to give up your interest?" Obviously, if that's the cheapest way to do it for me as a developer, I would go and say: "Look, your home is worth $40,000; I'll give you $40,000." That's one option, buy them out.

A second option, obviously, to be looked at would be if I had other -- suppose I have a park that has additional units. I can say, "Okay, I'll relocate here." That would be a very acceptable solution. I couldn't anticipate the municipality not approving, subject to that condition of a relocation. That's another alternative.

Either a cash buyout or a relocation, I would say, would be the solutions for that, and I would suggest that most people would be happy to get their equity out if it's not a particularly desirable place to live. If they're being awkward, then I suppose these are some of the things that could be dealt with by the municipality in what terms and conditions it sets, if the situation breaks down, but I would think that in most cases people would negotiate. I think most people would be happy to get out of a situation with their equity, and maybe slightly more. Some of them might even be happy to just get out. It depends on the individual circumstances.

If you have a difficult one, if nine out of 10 of them agree, that's obviously going to be a factor in the municipality's decision. It's going to be the views of undoubtedly most of the members of the community.

It's just like any situation we have now. We have lots of situations where parties have to negotiate. We're making another negotiable situation.

Mr Conway: I appreciate that, and that is certainly a very reasonable response. The only difficulty I suppose I have in my limited experience in this regard is that there is often, for whatever reason, a want of reason, and we've seen some of it here. One just imagines some of those bad-cat owners -- that is, the land owners -- who'll just chase you. They don't want to see you; they just want to fight. They feel that this is their absolute, god-given entitlement and they're going to get you out of there -- that is, the tenants. I worry a little bit because, and we heard some of it from the deputants, a lot of the tenants are just not in the position to allocate any kind of resources.

I think you gave a good answer, Paul. I just wonder in my mind, given the experiences I've had, whether in fact that would resolve the problem. I hope it does, but I'm thinking of a case I had about 10 or 15 years ago near the village of Chalk River, a funny situation where people had, decades earlier -- as my friend Gordie Mills will know, in those years it primarily was a railroad town. A number of railroad employees decided, I guess we'd call it, to squat. They had squatter's rights. They just built houses on land they didn't own, and nobody bothered. Fifty years later, when Marathon Realty, owning the land, wanted to sell it, the money that had to be coopered together just to tidy -- it was a lot of bucks for nine or 10 people, because you had to get surveys. It was just a nightmare.

Enough said. I was really attracted by what you said, and I'm trying to take those theoretical -- not theoretical, the views you eloquently expressed -- and I'm trying to superimpose those on situations like the one Mr Daigeler imagined. You look at those and you say, "Well, yes, that makes sense; that's what should happen."

What happens if you've got a group of 12 people? "Well, no. We'd like to go, but we can't go, for, among other reasons, we have no other place to go that is affordable for us. It is possible in Nepean to relocate those people, but where do I go? I can't afford any of that."

One of the things that troubles me about this, and it's not pretty in some cases, is that the mobile home parks particularly have developed as an imperfect way to deal with affordable housing for a number of people.


I think of that pair who were here who were cross-examined by Chris Stockwell. You just sit there and you listen. I thought that was a very believable story. Some guy's out working and he just -- how does it happen? It starts when he buys a trailer. He doesn't even know the trailer park exists, but he buys the trailer and the guy, who he may know, says: "I'll give you a deal. I'll sell you the trailer, and now there's this guy down the road," up in Concord or down in Trenton or over in Orono, "and he has one of these parks. He's a good guy. I'll make some arrangements."

You say, "All right, surely this guy" -- it's $60,000. I think this was the point Chris was trying to get to. If you've got $60,000, you're either going to go and get a loan or some kind of a mortgage. Surely somebody's going to ask a few questions. A lot of people, in my experience, don't. They say: "Gordie Mills is a good guy. He sold me this trailer and now I've gone to Conway's Trailer Park down in Orono and I've got a deal. All I know is I bought the thing one day and I've located it the next."

For the first, I'm in, I'm settled. A few years later, I wonder, but I'm busy. I've got a spouse and the kids and a job to worry about and all of a sudden I'm into it, and we heard some of those stories.

I just raise it as a concern, more about the mobile home parks than about the land-lease communities, the newer places that have developed. I imagine on the basis of what I've heard that the Wilmot Creeks and the Sandycove Acres are different categories. They are more, in my mind, a kind of condominium setup. They're not exactly, but these other ones, certainly the ones that I'm familiar with in eastern Ontario, have just developed, in many cases, kind of harum-scarum, and they're often owned and operated by good people. We heard a number of them here. There are some terrible people apparently, but a lot of good people, and you just sort of think that if you get into some of those values-related questions, the fundamental question remains: "I'm here because it's a low-cost alternative. If I have to go, how much cost is there associated with my moving?" If we're telling him he has to spend $5,000 he doesn't have to get to another place, what have we done? Maybe it's nothing we can deal with.

Mr Wessenger: I'd just like to make a couple of comments. If we look at what's happened in this area, in a sense we think of the old, wide-open, capitalistic system in the past, and these mobile home parks are one of those carryovers, an unregulated area: unregulated by zoning; in effect, unregulated with respect to consumer protection. I think we, as government, have to try to have adequate consumer protection. It's an area where we've not had adequate consumer protection in the past. We've been negligent as a society with respect to this consumer protection, because I think we have to take people as they are and not as we'd like them to be. People are not all knowledgeable to know what to do, and we have to take them as they are. We've been negligent in the past and as a result we have a lot of problems out there. We have to try to do what we can to deal with those problems.

You also said: "Are tenants going to have the knowledge to deal with these issues? Are they still going to be overridden in spite of the legislation?" I would say it would depend on whether the tenants have access to legal clinics. In my prior life I had a lot of dealings with legal clinics and I can say that they represent tenants extremely well with respect to looking after their rights. They are the experts in all of the province of Ontario in this law.

I would say that very few individual lawyers would ever want to get involved. Most of them back away from representing tenants because they don't have the expertise the clinics do. Tenants have been represented very well by clinics, and an area that most lawyers are very happy to leave to the legal clinics is the whole question of tenant representation.

As I've said, I've had a lot of personal experience dealing with legal clinics on the other side, so I know they represent the tenants very well. That's something you have to look at if you want to ensure there's a balance, that you do have the legal clinic services available for tenants. It also helps facilitate agreements and negotiated settlements as well as protect their legal rights.

Mr Conway: I appreciate that, but on the basis of the evidence we have heard, can you imagine -- I don't know if Mrs Fawcett can help me, but in south Hastings, in east Northumberland, how many legal clinics exist?

Mr Mills: In Oshawa there's one.

Mr Conway: But I'm talking about an area running from, say, Cobourg, east to Belleville. I live in that famous park -- what is it called? -- Trenton Trailer Park. I own my own mobile home in that mobile home park and I've got that owner, and I'm trying to engage this process.

Mr Wessenger: Trenton Trailer Park is represented by the Northumberland legal clinic. It's too bad they weren't here. The Northumberland legal clinic has impressed upon me very much the importance of getting this legislation through, because they are at the greatest risk of any persons I know of losing their equity. That's the reason I've been pressing this legislation so strongly. I've been down to talk to those people, and I commend them for the fight they're doing in very difficult circumstances and I want to help them.

Mrs Marland: Because we're still discussing subsection 1(1), I have to go back to comments Mr Wessenger has made during that discussion. It's very important that we all understand what this bill is addressing. Mr Wessenger said that buildings with foundations are not mobile homes. I think you recall that, Mr Wessenger.

Mr Wessenger: Generally, yes.

Mrs Marland: You've also said during these hearings that in your private practice as a lawyer you've represented any number of purchasers at Sandycove, so you're very familiar with that as a development.

Mr Wessenger: Yes, I am very familiar, and from canvassing it as well.

Mrs Marland: You've also referred to Wilmot Creek. How familiar are you with Wilmot Creek?

Mr Wessenger: I've never visited Wilmot Creek, but I'm advised that that community has even more permanent structures and higher-market-value structures than Sandycove Acres.

Mrs Marland: And in your opinion, Sandycove Acres and Wilmot Creek are not mobile homes.

Mr Wessenger: That is my opinion.

Mrs Marland: Then you will probably be both surprised and interested to know that both those communities are zoned as mobile home parks.

Mr Wessenger: I think the point has been made that for zoning there's a different standard than for the law relating to Landlord and Tenant.

Mrs Marland: That's exactly why I want that point clarified that I brought up with Mr Morris, because a lot pivots on that point. As much as we're trying to rush along here --

Mr Mills: Rush along? Holy mackerel. Did I miss something?

Mrs Marland: -- I know when there is something important. I know it because I sense it, not because I have your professional background or Mr Lyle's professional background.


As you are familiar with Sandycove, and Mr Mills can talk about Wilmot Creek, let's just deal with that. If you are saying those are not mobile homes, I would like to know what you would say if I told you that a condition of those developments is that the buildings are mobile; that they have to be built in such a way that they remain mobile, to the degree that they are able to be split and have to be a certain width in order to be transported down the highway. In doing that, the people who buy those homes have to pay 10% more for them; there's a 10% added cost in giving them that faculty for being mobile.

Mr Wessenger: I've never considered them mobile homes. The description most often used to describe the dwellings on those premises is modular homes, as distinct from mobile homes.

How were they created? It's an interesting question. I don't know if you want to know the history of it, but let's just say the developers -- another alternative would have been to develop a subdivision. There were obviously difficulties initially with developing a subdivision in these areas. I'm just sort of assuming that is the case, but I think it's fair to say --

Mrs Marland: If you're going to tell us the history, make sure it's accurate.

Mr Wessenger: Well, these were developed with the cooperation of the local municipalities, which thought this type of development was a good idea. The township of Innisfil at that stage was supportive of the development of Sandycove Acres. I assume there would have been some problems if they'd tried to go to a subdivision development. By doing it on the zoning basis it was done under, I would suggest there were probably lesser criteria required for that development.

Mrs Marland: Do you know that?

Mr Wessenger: Yes, I do know. The road criteria are different for a municipal subdivision than they are for --

Mrs Marland: You're saying "I assume," and yet you're trying to give us the history.

Mr Wessenger: No. I know the standards are different. If you call it a mobile home community, the standards are different from what they are under a standard subdivision. It allows certain cost savings, and particularly when you're doing a development of a retirement community, it means you would have your investment in a different type of infrastructure than you would have if you had a standard subdivision development.

It's a very good community. They have good social centres, and it works very well as a retirement community. But people in the development industry look and say, "How do you do things?" Lawyers look at situations: "How do you do them?" You fit yourself within those criteria to get what you want to do. That's all I'm saying.

Mrs Marland: But you're saying quite a bit, because you're saying different things than you said a couple of hours ago. You're now saying they're not mobile homes, they're modular homes.

Mr Wessenger: No, I've never said they were mobile homes down at Sandycove Acres. I've always said that in my opinion they were not mobile homes, and I'm just confirming that they aren't. They've always been described as modular homes.

Mrs Marland: Is that a legal opinion, that they're not mobile homes?

Mr Wessenger: In my opinion, they're not mobile. You're asking for my opinion, and I've said they're not mobile homes.

Mr Gary Wilson: On a point of order, Mr Chair: I don't see that this is achieving anything. Mrs Marland just seems to be picking up on Mr Wessenger's responses and playing with them. There's no sense that she's --

The Chair: And the point of order is?

Mr Gary Wilson: The point of order is that we're trying to look at the bill here. There are a lot of tenants, as you've heard from the submissions, who want to see us put this through.

Mr Mills: Wait till Monday and they hear about all this. I'm going to do my best to let them know.

Mrs Marland: Mr Chairman, if we are considering Mr Wessenger's bill and he is making certain statements, I am not playing with his statements, I'm trying to confirm what the information is that he is trying to give this committee. He told this committee that Sandycove Acres and Wilmot Creek were not mobile homes. I'm telling Mr Wessenger they are mobile homes. They're in property that is zoned as a mobile home park. There is an added cost to these buildings because they have to be able to be split after they have been constructed on a site in order that they retain their mobility and are legally transportable down the highways in our province under the restrictions laid out by the Ministry of Transportation. I am suggesting that what Mr Wessenger is telling this committee is not factual, and it's very serious.

I don't plan to sit here and be part of a discussion where the proponent of the bill is saying things like "In my opinion." I have not visited Wilmot Creek, I have not visited Sandycove Acres, and I am not familiar with those two developments. I depend in dealing with this bill on the information brought to this committee, and I am very concerned that the information being brought, especially by Mr Wessenger, is not correct. I feel very uncomfortable about the fact that blanket statements are being made here that are very important. They are very important to Mr Mills's residents as well, because --

Mr Mills: With this stall, it is. Wait until I tell them over the weekend.

Mrs Marland: Mr Mills's residents paid an added cost because their buildings couldn't just be put up as a firm structure for ever but had to retain the "mobility." We have a lawyer, Mr Wessenger, who acted on behalf of purchasers and vendors in Sandycove Acres and didn't even know those are mobile homes.

I might give you another example. There is another development in the province, namely, Morningside, a land-lease retirement community near New Hamburg, and those buildings are built onsite and they can be built and then split and then removed. That also is mobile park zoning and they're all on foundations. Yet Mr Wessenger said buildings on foundations are not mobile homes.

This is a very significant argument Mr Wessenger is presenting to this committee. I think it begs the credibility of your argument, Mr Wessenger, and I would like you to explain it to the committee.

Mr Wessenger: In my opinion, everything you've raised is irrelevant. But I will say this to the question of whether a mobile home can be defined in the zoning bylaw: You can call anything you like a mobile home in your zoning bylaw; you can define it such that it would include anything.

Mrs Marland: Would you say that again?

Mr Wessenger: A municipality's zoning bylaw determines the question for zoning of what a mobile home is and what a single-family residence is. It has nothing to do with the provincial Planning Act; it has to do with the municipal bylaws indicated by Mr Morris. He indicated before that the definition of mobiles was set out in the municipal bylaws.

Mrs Marland: So defining mobile home zoning is a municipal responsibility. That's what you just said, correct?

Mr Wessenger: Zoning is a municipal responsibility in how they define it.

Mrs Marland: I understand that. Would you also then say that whether those homes can be split and retain their mobility is a responsibility of the municipality?

Mr Wessenger: I don't see how this is relevant to my legislation. Whether a home is transportable on the highway as a modular unit or whether it's stick-built, it still ends up in the same category. It doesn't have any legal effect, how you have a home created. The issue was raised by legal counsel and explained by legal counsel, and we both agree on the definition of the degree of attachment, intention of attachment and all those aspects.

Mrs Marland: You agree and which legal counsel -- Mr Lyle? -- agrees?

Mr Wessenger: Yes.

Mrs Marland: That's two opinions. There is an old saying, of course, that if you have 10 lawyers in a room you have 10 legal opinions.

Mr Wessenger, do you really believe that the definition of what is a mobile home is not relevant to your legislation?

Mr Wessenger: I believe the definition of what is a mobile home in a zoning bylaw is not the determining factor under the Landlord and Tenant Act.

Mrs Marland: So you're not interested in clarifying, for the sake of all those people who own mobile homes in Ontario, what is defined as a mobile home?

Mr Wessenger: It's really not relevant to my legislation. Whether you're a mobile home or a land-lease community home, my legislation will give you the same rights and the same treatment, so whatever class is not legally significant.

Mrs Marland: In your opinion.

Mr Wessenger: It's legally significant under the existing law, but not once my amendment passes.

Mr Mills: And you wonder why some people drink.


Mrs Marland: The problem is that we had a day and a half of deputations where people came to tell us the problems they experienced in both kinds of development. I thought you were listening to them, and I thought that as your bill was going to take into consideration the rights and therefore deal with equality for everyone, it was important to have a definition of what is actually being addressed here. It would be a bit like saying that Bill 79, the employment equity bill, applies to everybody, and isn't it interesting that Bill 79 was very specific about to whom it applied? People who look at your Bill 21 have to know who qualifies or to whom that bill is applied in terms of real property and structures. You obviously don't see any importance in having that definition.

Mr Wessenger now wants us to vote against this section he put in, the part subject to section 128.2. As the wording is, I just don't understand how you can amend the Landlord and Tenant Act without understanding whose property is going to be interpreted to come under that act. By removing this section -- and it is subject to another section in the bill, and certainly now we all know what 128.2 of the bill says -- if we're talking about a reference in the Landlord and Tenant Act to "residential premises," we'd better know before somebody comes along and says, "What is a residential premise?" We don't have that answer this afternoon. I'd like to know who's going to give it to us.

Mr Wessenger: If you'd only read the legislation, you'll note item (2)(b) adds a definition of what is included. That's the change. There's no change in "residential premises" under the Landlord and Tenant Act except by the addition of (2)(b), which is "land intended and used as a site for a mobile home or a land-lease community home used for residential purposes, whether or not the landlord also supplies the mobile home." That's the change in the residential premises definition.

Mrs Marland: I have read that. I'm asking you, if you want to deal with (2), which isn't actually what is on the floor now -- I was going to wait until we got to (2) because we have a very excellent Chairman who likes us to deal with clauses as they're on the floor. If you want me to discuss subsection 1(2) now I will, but I don't think the Chair will permit it.

Mr Wessenger: We've had absolutely no discussion on subsection 1(1) all afternoon.

Mrs Marland: In your opinion.

Mr Wessenger: Ask any objective viewer.

Mr Mammoliti: It's my opinion as well.

Mr Gary Wilson: And mine.

Mr Conway: There's news from Lillehammer, by the way. The Canadians are leading the Americans 2 to 1 in the third period.

The Chair: Well, that was a valid point of order.

Mrs Marland: Mr Chairman, I'll wait until subsection 1(2) is dealt with to respond.

Mr Mammoliti: Are we going to vote now?

The Chair: Mr Mills would like to speak.

Mr Mills: I'm just going to say for the record how totally fed up I am with this whole charade. Mr Chairman, if this continues, this coming weekend I'm going to spend my entire weekend in Wilmot Creek telling all those people, and I suspect many of them support the Conservative Party, what the member from the Conservative Party has done to stall this bill from proceeding. We had these people come in here and I have 700 signatures on a petition that demands that this bill be passed as expediently as possible. What has happened this afternoon is nothing but stalling, no doubt about it. The member is attempting to stop this bill. On the weekend, I'm going to tell all those people in Wilmot Creek, in my riding, exactly what happened. I think it's disgraceful, outrageous, and -- well, because of parliamentary language, I am somewhat limited.

That's on the record and I'm going to spread that around.

Mrs Marland: You said you didn't do that.

Mr Mills: You want to believe it. This is insulting to my intelligence, this game plan. I know what your game is. We all know it. We know what the game being played here is.

The Chair: Thank you, Mr Mills.

Mr Mills: You know it too, Chairman.

The Chair: Further discussion with regard to section 1?

Mrs Marland: I think it's fair to respond to comments made during the debate. If Mr Mills feels there is some gamesmanship going on here, I draw to his attention that when he says he's going to get this out over the weekend to the residents of Wilmot Creek, I hope he would get it all out.

Mr Mills: That's not gamesmanship.

Mrs Marland: The residents of Wilmot Creek will be very interested to know that the proponent of the bill doesn't really know what Wilmot Creek is or what kinds of homes they are. Also, when I read something into the record yesterday and said, "Now that can be circulated by the members to their residents," Mr Mills said, "Oh, we don't do that kind of thing." I'm glad that in 24 hours you've decided to go out and do that kind of thing, Mr Mills.

Mr Mills: It was because of your display, Margaret.

Mr Mammoliti: He's got no choice.

The Chair: Order. Mrs Marland has the floor.

Mrs Marland: It's important that the people of Wilmot Creek understand what is going on here.

Mr Mills: They'll be writing to you. You'll hear from them.

Mr Mammoliti: Why don't you go out there and speak to them, Margaret?

Mr Mills: Have a chat with them.

Mr Mammoliti: This Sunday. Are you doing anything this Sunday?

The Chair: Order.

Mrs Marland: I'd be happy to discuss this bill anywhere at any time in this province that I'm able to in terms of what it is we're dealing with here.

Mr Mills: They'd eat her up for dinner.

Mrs Marland: I'm just an ordinary, little old housewife and mother.

Mr Fletcher: You're not that old, Margaret.

Mr Mills: I'm a little old pensioner.

Mrs Marland: I'm not a lawyer and I'm not a municipal planner, but I have a lot of common sense and I know a little bit about law and a little bit about municipal planning. I've learned a lot about everybody's rights and I don't like legislation that has an unequal impact on the people of this province when there could be a piece of legislation brought into this House that addresses and resolves some of the horrible problems we heard about yesterday morning and all day Tuesday. There are situations in this province that, there's no question, have to be resolved, but it's appalling that we have the kind of charade we have with this bill. Whether or not we like it, as Mr Conway has said, in his experience -- and his experience is about 10 years longer than mine, and mine is nine years. I have never seen a private bill dealt with the way this is.


If you're going to take this elephant-gun-to-kill-the-fly approach to try to resolve the problems of some of these horrific stories we've heard, obviously, in doing that you create inequality, and that's the concern we have. We want the horrible problems resolved, but we don't want people like the young couple who didn't get to speak, who are from the Brockville area -- I'm not sure if I mentioned them yesterday, but I think they have only 21 units. They have a wonderful operation in their mobile home park, and there's no question about what kind of homes they are.

We have one of our deputations sitting here again today, from Kenron Estates, a Mr Craig Maxfield. He's got a family business where everybody is happy.

We've got parks around this province that work very well, and if you look at the thousands and thousands of units where there are no problems, what we are doing with this legislation is -- it's actually happened in a number of pieces of the current NDP government's legislation. They take something and throw this huge blanket over everything in order to resolve some small patch in the middle, rather than dealing specifically with that specific area or that specific category of problem.

I have talked to people who have investments of this type in other parts of this country and in the States, and there is a way to solve the problems and make these kinds of communities work. It doesn't have to be the route this bill is taking. This bill, because it's so convoluted -- and it was very interesting that Mr Wessenger a little while ago said something about the legal clinics and the rights of tenants. I'm very glad when tenants who do not have the money to pay for a high-priced lawyer have access to legal aid, but I really get upset when those legal clinic representatives come in here and place on the record time and time again that they are tenant activists.

Mr Gary Wilson: On a point of order, Mr Chair: I don't see what this discussion has to do with the bill before us. I'd like a ruling from you.

The Chair: I'm sure members would try to restrict their comments to section 1, but the tradition has been to permit a rather wide-ranging debate during section 1.

Mr Gary Wilson: But how wide? There's a limit to the amount of time that can be spent on it.

Mrs Marland: I don't believe you raised that point of order when Mr Wessenger referred to legal clinics earlier this afternoon, did you?

Mr Gary Wilson: The point is that we have had that discussion already, and I don't see how this is helping in looking at this bill.

The Chair: All members would know that during debate we shouldn't be repetitive and should stick to the matter at hand, and Mrs Marland will do that, I'm sure.

Mrs Marland: This is the first time I've spoken about the legal clinics, but Mr Wessenger spoke about them earlier today, and he said he would put tenants' rights ahead of property rights. Hansard will show that.

This is my first opportunity to make a comment about the legal clinics and the rights of tenants. As I said, and I'll say it again, this legislation, when it goes through the way it's currently drafted, is going to have to be interpreted by people all over this province, be they lawyers or not. There will be tenants in this province who will be going to the legal clinics for help, and I'm glad that tenants who can't afford lawyers and legal advice have a legal clinic to go to, but what really upsets me is when those legal clinics come in here and say they are tenants' activists, and they're paid for by the government.

Mr Mammoliti: On a point of order, Mr Chair: I assume we're still on subsection 1(1) of Bill 21. I have no idea what legal clinics and what Mrs Marland is talking about have to do with this section. I would like Mrs Marland, if she's going to make these comments, to refer to the clause itself and perhaps be a little more specific about what her comments have to do with the clause.

Mrs Marland: I'd be happy to. The motion that's before us is subsection 1(1) of the bill. Section 1 of the Landlord and Tenant Act is being referred to in the motion that's on the floor and is being moved by Mr Wessenger, and Mr Wessenger now wants us to vote totally against this section of the bill.

When that takes place, there will be a requirement to interpret that section when it becomes a statute of this province. When that happens, there will be people who will need help with that interpretation, and there may be people who, in needing that help, will seek legal advice. When they go to seek legal advice, they may have to go to a legal clinic. In fact, Mr Wessenger referred earlier this afternoon to the availability of legal clinics, in response to a matter raised by Mr Conway, I think.

The point is that legal clinics have to be available also, in my opinion, to the little mom-and-pop operation, if you want a more colloquial description of a trailer or mobile home park in this province, where there are no problems. We've got a bill here that's giving all the rights to the tenants under the Landlord and Tenant Act, because these are rights enshrined in the Landlord and Tenant Act and everybody who knows that act knows it's really a tenants' act.

In some sections of that act I agree with the protection of tenants, but you cannot say, in a free country where people save up their lifetime savings to invest in a little trailer park or a mobile park, that the people who own the land lose all their rights to their tenants. You can't do that unless you're a pure, dyed-in-the-wool, irrefutable socialist.


Mr White: I knew that was coming.

Mr Wessenger: She had to put the S-word in there somewhere.

Mr Mills: That's as bad as having leprosy.

Mr Mammoliti: On a point of order, Mr Chair: Well, there are a number of things that have come up over the last minute or two. The word "socialist" has come up. She's referred to the bill as a whole. What does that have to do with the subsection we're on?

The Chair: First, I would rule that I think "socialist" is parliamentary.

Mr Mammoliti: I didn't say it wasn't. I just don't know what that has to do with the subsection.

The Chair: I'm sure the member will try to restrict her comments to section 1 of the bill.

Mrs Marland: Mr Chairman, there are even socialists in this room whom I like.

Mr Mammoliti: I move that if she strays one more time she gets kicked out.

Mrs Marland: You're sounding like Bhaduria, suggesting that I should be kicked out. The good thing about a democracy, of course, is that we're all entitled to our own opinion. We're all elected --

The Chair: And we all speak through the Chair.

Mrs Marland: -- and we all speak through the Chair, and we all may make comments on legislation that we think may or may not work.

My concern about this bill is that it's far too far-reaching and all-encompassing to result in equity to both kinds of property owners. When we talk about subsection 1(1), we're talking about the Landlord and Tenant Act and how it applies, and that is my concern.

The Chair: Questions, comments regarding 1(1)? If not, shall 1(1) carry?

Mrs Marland: Recorded vote.

Mr Conway: We have an amendment, don't we? The sponsor of the bill is recommending that we vote in the negative?

Mr Wessenger: That is what I'm recommending.

Mr Conway: It's finally clear.

The Chair: All in favour of 1(1)? All those opposed?

Mr White: Isn't there an obligation to vote, Chair?

Mrs Marland: Yes, there is an obligation to vote.


Conway, Fawcett, Fletcher, Mammoliti, Mills, Wessenger, White.


Carr, Marland.

The Chair: The section is defeated and will be struck out.

Subsection 1(2): I believe we have an amendment.

Mr Wessenger: I move that clause (b) of the definition of "residential premises" in section 1 of the Landlord and Tenant Act, as set out in subsection 1(2) of the bill, be amended by adding "or the land-lease community home" at the end.

This is a technical requirement. It's something that should have been in the initial bill, but it was missed in the first draft.

Mr Conway: Just to be clear, that would then read, "land intended and used as a site for a mobile home or a land-lease community home used for residential purposes, whether or not the landlord also supplies the mobile home or the land-lease community home."

Mr Wessenger: That's right.

The Chair: Are there questions, comments or amendments to Mr Wessenger's amendment?

Mrs Marland: I'd like to ask a question of the ministerial staff. Could you give me a definition of "residential premises" as it pertains now in this motion? I realize it's the definition in the Landlord and Tenant Act. Pardon me, it isn't; it's as set out in 1(2) of this bill, isn't it? Could you give me a definition of what "residential premises" means in this motion?

Mr Lyle: I'm not entirely sure what the question is.

Mrs Marland: I'll rephrase it. We have a motion on the floor, subsection 1(2) of the bill, section 1 of the Landlord and Tenant Act. Mr Wessenger has moved that clause (b) of the definition of "residential premises" in section 1 of the Landlord and Tenant Act, as set out in subsection 1(2) of the bill, be amended by adding "or the land-lease community home" at the end. What is the definition of "residential premises" as it's worded in this motion?

Mr Lyle: This is broadening the definition of "residential premises." Currently, land that is intended for use as a site for a mobile home in which people are living is covered by the Landlord and Tenant Act. This broadens the definition of "residential premises" in the Landlord and Tenant Act to include a site for a land-lease community home.

Mrs Marland: I understand that that's what this is doing, but as the wording includes "residential premises," I'm asking you to give me a definition of what a residential premise is in the Landlord and Tenant Act.

Mr Lyle: I can read a portion of the definition of "residential premises" in the Landlord and Tenant Act, if that would be of assistance.

Mrs Marland: Yes, please; it would.

Mr Lyle: "`Residential premises' means,

"(a) any premises used or intended for use for residential purposes, including accommodation in a boarding house, rooming house or lodging house,

"(b) land intended and used as a site for a mobile home used for residential purposes, whether or not the landlord also supplies the mobile home."

It then goes on to say "but does not include," and then there are nine subclauses which are specific exclusions from the definition of "residential premises."

Mrs Marland: So it's quite lengthy, and the exclusions are all part of the definition.

Mr Lyle: They certainly clarify the definition; that's true.

Mrs Marland: Mr Chairman, could I ask that we stand this section down until I can read the definition that's referred to it this motion?

The Chair: Mrs Marland is asking for unanimous consent to stand down Mr Wessenger's amendment to subsection 1(2). Do I have agreement? No.

Mrs Marland: Then we'll have to read the exclusions, as I'm asking for the definition of "residential premises."

Mr Lyle: Okay. Starting with "but does not include,

"(c) premises occupied for business or agricultural purposes with living accommodation attached under a single lease unless the tenant -- "

Mrs Marland: Wait. That's in a business building; is that what that means?

Mr Lyle: That's correct.

" -- unless the tenant occupying the living accommodation is a person other than the person occupying the premises for business or agricultural purposes, in which case the living accommodation shall be deemed residential premises,

"(d) such other class or classes of accommodation as may be designated by the regulations,

"(e) premises whose occupant or occupants are required to share a bathroom or kitchen facility with the owner, the owner's spouse, child or parent, or the spouse's child or parent, where the owner, spouse, child or parent lives in the building in which the premises are located,

"(f) accommodation provided by an educational institution to its students or staff where,

"(i) the accommodation is provided primarily to persons under the age of majority, or

"(ii) all major questions related to the accommodation are decided after consultation with a council or association representing the residents,

"unless the accommodation has its own self-contained bathroom and kitchen facilities and is intended for year-round occupation by full-time students or staff and members of their households,

"(g) accommodation provided to the travelling and vacationing public in a hotel, motel or motor hotel, resort, lodge, tourist camp, cottage or cabin establishment, inn, campground, trailer park, tourist home, bed and breakfast establishment or farm vacation home,

"(h) accommodation that is subject to the Public Hospitals Act, the Private Hospitals Act, the Community Psychiatric Hospitals Act, the Mental Hospitals Act, the Homes for Special Care Act, the Homes for the Aged and Rest Homes Act, the Homes for Retarded Persons Act, the Nursing Homes Act, the Ministry of Correctional Services Act, the Charitable Institutions Act, the Child and Family Services Act, the Developmental Services Act, the Ministry of Health Act or the Ministry of Community and Social Services Act,

"(i) accommodation occupied by a person for penal, correctional, rehabilitative or therapeutic purposes -- "

Mrs Marland: Like a halfway home, something like that?

Mr Lyle: Correct. " -- or for the purpose of receiving care,

"(j) short-term accommodation provided as emergency shelter, or

"(k) accommodation, whether situated on or off a farm, where occupancy of the premises is conditional upon the occupant continuing to be employed on the farm."

That's the end of the definition of residential premises.


Mrs Marland: Thank you. In this motion where we're adding a land-lease community home, do you have a definition of a land-lease community home?

Mr Lyle: Section 2 of the bill has a definition of the land-lease community home.

Mrs Marland: That's the section we're coming to next. Okay.

Where we have the definition of a residential premise that will now be under the Landlord and Tenant Act, what will be the impact of Bill 120, under which any single-family home in the province as of right may have an accessory apartment or garden suite? If we take this definition of residential premise, does it mean that in these kinds of developments Bill 21 is addressing, if there is a basement under what is either or not a mobile home, that Bill 120 will permit you in fact have an apartment in that location?

Mr Lyle: My understanding of the apartments-in-houses provisions of Bill 120 is that it refers to single, detached, semi-detached and row houses. I don't believe it would fit within --

Mrs Marland: The only restriction in Bill 120 is if they're on a septic system, so if one of these residential premises being described in this section in this motion are not on a septic system, I would suggest that as a single-family home, which they are, they are entitled to have a basement apartment, a granny suite on grade, or a garden suite, whatever description you want to use.

Mr Lyle: It's really difficult for me to comment on that because, to be quite honest, I'm not that familiar with the apartments-in-houses provisions in Bill 120.

Mrs Marland: I appreciate your honesty.

That is a very important question, because if we are now taking land-lease community homes under the Landlord and Tenant Act, we'd better be sure what can be a land-lease community home and whether there are any restrictions on that. I would think a member like Mr Mills, who is concerned about his constituents in Wilmot Creek, and Mr Wessenger, who is concerned, he says, about his constituents in Sandycove Acres, must be concerned about a concurrent piece of legislation which will also be going through clause-by-clause in this very committee starting March 7, which will permit as of right -- which means regardless of any municipal zoning. It supersedes any of the existing acts whatsoever, whether you talk about the Planning Act, the Municipal Act, any of the powers that exist today that were given by the province to municipalities to plan their communities.

This supersedes all of that, so technically and factually, if I have a home in Sandycove Acres or Wilmot Creek and I happen to have a basement, I'm going to be able to bring my family there and set up in my basement. Or better still, I may buy some of these mobile homes with basements or with enough property -- actually, there's no restriction about the amount of property on grade for granny suites. In any event, we may be able to make investments buying these homes and doubling the occupancy.

The fact that Mr Lyle can't answer my question might indicate that I should be asking the question to the parliamentary assistant, through the Chair. Mr Wilson, you might know how you're going to deal with accessory apartments as it pertains to those developments that are referred to in this motion that's on the floor now.

Mr White: You can't have a basement apartment in a mobile home, Margaret.

Mrs Marland: Would you like to sit down and make that statement on the record, Mr White?

Mr Gary Wilson: I'd like to hear Mr Wessenger's view on this. I don't recall what he said. It's his bill, and I want to see what he says.

Mrs Marland: Mr Chairman, this is beautiful. I'm asking a question, through the Chair, to the parliamentary assistant. Mr Wilson, whether you like it or not, you're paid $18,000 a year to be the parliamentary assistant to the Minister of Housing, and I'm asking --

Mr Wessenger: Mr Chair, could I make a point of order here? I think this question is out of order because it refers to Bill 120. It doesn't refer to my Bill 21. I'd be happy to give my opinion on that if I happen to be sitting on Bill 120, but it's not relevant to my bill because my bill does not deal with 120.

Mrs Marland: Oh, are we getting a little nervous here? We don't want to discuss anything that's relevant to these land-lease community homes that might be impacted by concurrent legislation that's going through this very same committee? Is this too big a question for you to deal with?

The Chair: I see nothing out of order. It's quite permissible for members to ask questions about what the impact of other legislation is, either proposed or in existence.


Mrs Marland: So I ask the parliamentary assistant to the Minister of Housing, have you ever even discussed it? You've had this marvellous Bill 21 coming since May 19 of last year, I think it was. You've had basement apartments discussed going back to the green paper, I think it was, released on housing intensification. Actually, housing intensification was originally a white paper by the Liberal government, and then it became a green paper by your government. Can you tell me, Mr Wilson, through the Chair, that the Ministry of Housing has never discussed the impact of basement apartments in this kind of development?

Mr Mills: It's just a crawl space. If you think you're going to get an apartment --


Mr Gary Wilson: I don't know about that, Mr Chair.

Mrs Marland: So the answer is that you don't know.

Mr Gary Wilson: That's right.

Mrs Marland: You don't know if your ministry has ever discussed that as a potential problem.

Mr Mammoliti: That's what he said: He doesn't know. How many times do you have to ask him? He said he doesn't know.

The Chair: Thank you for your help, Mr Mammoliti.

Mrs Marland: And yet you're willing to put the land-lease community homes under the Landlord and Tenant Act.

I bring you back to what happened yesterday. When Mr Daigeler was honest enough to ask about a description of the different types of homes, I'm sure some of the members will recall this man who corrected me also and said, "We have full basements." I later spoke to the gentleman in the hall and he described his full basement. So I'm sorry if you think it's a crawl space. This man has a full and finished basement.

The funny thing about Bill 120 as it pertains to basement apartments is that it doesn't refer to size.

Mr Fletcher: It refers to the municipality, though.

Mrs Marland: It does not refer to the fact that you can't have a basement apartment unless you have a certain area. When, with this motion when you're taking the land-lease community home under the Landlord and Tenant Act, I think it is very significant and you've got to consider what the impact is of the other legislation. When I talk to the people at Wilmot Creek, I'll tell them their community could perhaps double its occupancy after Bill 120 is passed, because they can all start establishing their granny flats on grade, if they don't happen to have basements. We're going to have just a wonderful community. We're going to have grannies in the mobile home and we're going to have --

Mrs Fawcett: I can think of one granny who won't be.

Mr Conway: Margaret, I'll tell you, if Andy Brandt had ever sicked you on me when I was the minister, I would have surrendered.

Mr White: Sean Conway calls it quits.

Mrs Marland: In fairness, I have asked a relevant question to Mr Lyle.

Mr Gary Wilson: Excuse me, Mr Chairman --

Mrs Marland: Excuse me. I still have the floor. Do you wish to try a point of order, Mr Wilson?

Mr Mammoliti: There's got to be a rule on this. Let's change the standing orders. How do we do that, Mr Chair? "No more than six hours."

Mr Wessenger: As I indicated earlier, I thought this whole process should be changed.

Mrs Marland: Mr Chairman, I have asked a very important question of Mr Lyle, who is the counsel to the Ministry of Housing. In fairness, he didn't know I was going to ask the question, and he doesn't have the answer. I've also asked the same question to the parliamentary assistant to the Minister of Housing, who also honestly said he didn't know. I respect the fact that he said that, which confirms what I've said about all of us, that we can't be expected to know everything. But when those questions are asked, and it is a significant question that's justifiable in this hearing, I think we should not proceed with this section until I have that answer. I'm quite happy for Mr Lyle and Mr Wilson to get that answer and that we stand down this section until we have the answer.

The Chair: Would you like to reply to Mrs Marland's question?

Mr Gary Wilson: I'll follow Mr Wessenger's lead.

Mr Wessenger: I don't think it warrants a reply, because that is a question that should properly be asked for Bill 120 and not with respect to my bill. The Landlord and Tenant Act, in my opinion, does not -- I don't know. I don't think even amendments in Bill 120 would relate to the question of basement apartments. I would think it would come under the Planning Act, not under the Landlord and Tenant Act.

Mrs Marland: Just a moment. Mr Chairman, perhaps Mr Wessenger -- well, no, you weren't sitting on the committee that was reviewing Bill 120.

Mr Gary Wilson: Neither were you, Margaret, to be fair.

Mrs Marland: I would like to tell you that in the government's opinion, one of the most important sections in Bill 120 is putting basement apartments under the Landlord and Tenant Act, so there is a direct connection. How can you miss that?

Mr Gary Wilson: Mr Chair, just to put this to rest, partly because I'd never realized --

Mrs Marland: I wish you knew your bill.

Mr Gary Wilson: -- that Mrs Marland's grasp of Bill 120 was so shaky. Talking about doubling the occupancy of these places when they don't have municipal septic systems means 120 doesn't apply to them. It's as simple as that.

The Chair: Thank you, Mr Wilson, for that clarification.

Mr Gary Wilson: I thought you knew more about it, Margaret.

Mrs Marland: Mr Wilson, when you review the Hansard, you will notice that about 20 minutes ago I did say the only exception was where these buildings and lots were on a septic system. How did you miss it? I don't know that these developments are all on septic systems. If you can tell me that every one of these developments is on its own septic system, which is how the bill reads -- are all these developments around the province on septic systems?


Mrs Marland: All right. The answer from people who are in the industry is that all these systems are not on septic systems. So I'm sorry, Mr Mills and Mr Wilson, you're wrong.

Mr Wilson, if you're making a statement as parliamentary assistant to the minister that they're all on septic systems and they're not, it's a little unfortunate. I'm not in the Ministry of Housing and I'm dependent on the information you give us. If you're giving us inaccurate information, it's unfortunate. Why don't you say you don't know whether they're all on septic systems? If there are some on septic systems, they will be able to add accessory apartments.

Mr Wilson, if you don't care about this, that's your choice. I care about it.

I suggest to you again, Mr Chair, that this section that is on the floor now is very, very critical, and if the answers are not available, I think we should be able to stand down that section as it pertains to the questions I've already put on the record. Do we have an agreement to stand it down and get the answers?

The Chair: Are you asking that this section be stood down, or that the amendment be stood down?

Mrs Marland: I'm asking for the amendment to be stood down, which I have already read once, but I'm happy to read it again.

The Chair: No. Mr Wessenger's amendment to this section: Do we have unanimous consent? No, we don't.

Mrs Marland: All right. If you won't stand it down to get the answers to what I've already asked, I still want a definition of a land-lease community home.

How can we pass a section that refers to another section that we haven't even passed yet? How can we pass a section that refers to land-lease community home before we define what a land-lease community home is in the next section? Maybe Mr Wessenger would like to reorder his sections so that at least we know what we're talking about.

Would somebody answer the question about how we can pass a definition that doesn't exist? We are passing a definition that doesn't exist. Would you agree, Mr Chairman?

The Chair: I do know that following the completion of clause-by-clause, bills are reordered by legal counsel if that is necessary.


Mrs Marland: In this motion that's on the floor, it says, "clause (b) of the definition of `residential premises' in section 1 of the Landlord and Tenant Act, as set out in subsection 1(2) of the bill, be amended by adding `or the land-lease community home' at the end."

I'm suggesting respectfully, to you as the Chair, and perhaps to Mr Wessenger as the proponent of the bill, that as of this time there is no definition in this bill of a land-lease community home, so how can that be passed? The definition is in the next section. Maybe legal counsel could answer the question.

The Chair: My opinion and my advice is that there's nothing out of order.

Mrs Marland: There's nothing out of order, but how much sense does it make to pass something when we don't know what it is?

Mr Wessenger: Just because you can't read, Margaret.

Mrs Marland: Oh, you're really a sweetheart.

Mr Mammoliti: He's been sitting there for six hours listening to this stuff.

The Chair: Order. Mrs Marland has the floor.

Mr Mammoliti: I would never be able to sit there like that.

Mr Carr: The good news is that a year from now none of you will be sitting here for anything, so it won't matter much. You'll be retired down in Florida, sitting in your mobile home.

The Chair: Order. It must be getting close to 5. We are speaking, just so members will recall, to Mr Wessenger's amendment to subsection 1(2).

Mrs Marland: Mr Chairman, I would be the first to place on the record that I do not have the education Mr Wessenger has, but I have enough education that I wouldn't say to him what he just said to me. I would like to tell Mr Wessenger that I can read, and I would like to give him the opportunity to withdraw that comment.

Mr Wessenger: I will acknowledge that. I was quite excited to say that. Maybe it's a refusal to try to deal with this legislation in a non-obstructionist manner.

Mr Carr: It's not obstruction.

Mr Mills: Of course it's obstruction.

The Chair: We should not be imputing motives.

Mr Carr: Get it right the first time. It wasn't us who screwed it up: 33-odd amendments. They're not ours. You're the guys who screwed it up, not us.

The Chair: Order.

Mrs Marland: If this were such a straightforward bill, and if there had been thought put into it before it was drafted, you wouldn't have a 24-section bill with 33 amendments. I don't appreciate the fact that Mr Wessenger will not withdraw his comment. If Mr Wessenger thinks I cannot read, at least he might acknowledge --

The Chair: Perhaps we should get back to discussing the particular subsection.

Mrs Marland: All right, let's do that. I'd like to tell him I can count. We're dealing with subsection 1(2) of the bill, and it isn't until section 2 of the bill that we get a definition of a land-lease community home. I'm asking, through the Chair to the ministry staff, to tell me, if we pass subsection 1(2) of the bill, section 1 of the Landlord and Tenant Act, clause (b) etc, what land-lease community home is. I'm entitled to know; the record is entitled to show it.

The Chair: What precisely was the question?

Mrs Marland: I'm asking for a definition. We've got some wording here. I'd like to know, in the motion that's on the floor, what "land-lease community home" is. I don't mind who answers.

Mr Mammoliti: Direct it, Margaret. Whom are you directing your question to?

Mrs Marland: Oh, I'd be happy to direct it.

The Chair: Through the Chair.

Mrs Marland: Mr Chairman, I already did say that if the ministry staff would like to answer with a definition for me of what "land-lease community home" is.

The Chair: Members may ask any questions they wish of anyone they wish, but no one is compelled to answer questions.

Mrs Marland: You mean if I ask the ministry staff, they're not compelled to answer?

The Chair: That's correct.

Mr Lyle: I'm happy to answer. If section 2 of the bill is passed, the definition of "land-lease community home" will be as it's set out in section 2 of the bill.

Mrs Marland: And what is that?

Mr Lyle: As set out, "`land-lease community home' means any dwelling that is a permanent structure where the owner of the dwelling leases the land used or intended for use as the site for the dwelling, but does not include a mobile home."

Mrs Marland: So if "land-lease community home" does not include a mobile home, we're back to the point I've been making all afternoon, that the land-lease communities everybody is familiar with, Sandycove and Wilmot Creek, which are mobile homes, would not be covered under this section. Is that correct?

Mr Fletcher: Are you asking Mr Wessenger?

Mrs Marland: Maybe it would be nice to get an answer from Mr Wessenger, because it is his bill, we are told. Mr Wessenger, I'm asking you.

Mr Wessenger: What question is that?

Mr White: Oh, no.

Mr Mammoliti: How do you do it, Margaret? What vitamins do you take?

Mrs Marland: Did you want me to repeat the question?

Mr Wessenger: If you could repeat it quickly, in five or 10 words.

The Chair: It now being 5 of the clock, we will adjourn to March 7 at 1 o'clock to take up the ministry presentation in regard to Bill 120.

The committee adjourned at 1658.