Thursday 26 August 1993

County of Simcoe Act, 1993, Bill 51


*Chair / Président: Beer, Charles (York North/-Nord L)

*Vice-Chair / Vice-Président: Eddy, Ron (Brant-Haldimand L)

Carter, Jenny (Peterborough ND)

Cunningham, Dianne (London North/-Nord PC)

Hope, Randy R. (Chatham-Kent ND)

Martin, Tony (Sault Ste Marie ND)

McGuinty, Dalton (Ottawa South/-Sud L)

*O'Connor, Larry (Durham-York ND)

O'Neill, Yvonne (Ottawa-Rideau L)

*Owens, Stephen (Scarborough Centre ND)

*Rizzo, Tony (Oakwood ND)

*Wilson, Jim (Simcoe West/-Ouest PC)

*In attendance / présents

Substitutions present / Membres remplaçants présents:

Conway, Sean G. (Renfrew North/-Nord L) for Mrs O'Neill

Hayes, Pat (Essex-Kent ND) for Ms Carter

McLean, Allan K. (Simcoe East/-Est PC) for Mrs Cunningham

Murphy, Tim (St George-St David L) for Mr McGuinty

Waters, Daniel (Muskoka-Georgian Bay/Muskoka-Baie-Georgienne ND) for Mr Hope

Wessenger, Paul (Simcoe Centre ND) for Mr Martin

Also taking part / Autres participants et participantes:

Ministry of Municipal Affairs:

Griggs, Jeremy, fact-finding officer, municipal boundaries branch

Hayes, Pat, parliamentary assistant to the minister

Kotecha, Naren, adviser, municipal boundaries branch

Perron, Linda, solicitor

Temporale, Rick, chief negotiator, municipal boundaries branch

Clerk / Greffier: Arnott, Doug

Staff / Personnel: Mifsud, Lucinda, legislative counsel



The committee met at 1022 in the Trent Room, Macdonald Block, Toronto.


Consideration of Bill 51, An Act respecting the Restructuring of the County of Simcoe / Loi concernant la restructuration du comté de Simcoe.

The Chair (Mr Charles Beer): Good morning, members of the committee, ladies and gentlemen. We begin our clause-by-clause hearings in Toronto in the Trent Room. I believe everyone has now received all the proposed amendments. I appreciate that we've had to spend a bit of time getting everything in order, and we will now begin to deal with Bill 51, An Act respecting the Restructuring of the County of Simcoe, for clause-by-clause consideration.

I would ask the government to move the first amendment it has at the outset, because it deals with the whole bill. Parliamentary assistant.

Mr Pat Hayes (Essex-Kent): Thank you, Mr Chair. The first motion we have --

The Chair: I'm sorry, do we have that one? I don't have that.

Mr Hayes: Well, let me read it and you'll --

The Chair: Before we do, I think maybe you've got all the copies. We have too much paper. We're all right now. Go ahead.

Mr Hayes: This is dealing with the legal language. I move that the bill be amended by striking out "Oro and Medonte" wherever it appears and substituting in each case "Oro/Medonte."

The Chair: Shall the motion carry? In favour? Opposed? The motion is carried.

Shall section 1 of the bill carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried.

There's an amendment to section 2, a PC motion.

Mr Jim Wilson (Simcoe West): It's subsection (7.1).

The Chair: There are, I believe, five with respect to this section. Could you indicate which one you will begin with?

Mr Jim Wilson: Section 2, (7.1), boundary matters. I move that section 2 of the bill be amended by adding the following subsection:

"Boundary matters

"(7.1) Despite this section, in preparing the schedules under subsection (7) the minister shall ensure that,

"(a) the easterly boundary of the town of New Tecumseth extends to Highway 27 and includes lots 23 and 24 of the former township of Tecumseth; and

"(b) the boundary between the town of New Tecumseth and the township of Adjala and Tosorontio be drawn so that all of the eastern portion of lot 31, concession 7, lying north of the 30th sideroad and being formerly in the township of Adjala is included within the town of New Tecumseth."

The Chair: Discussion?

Mr Jim Wilson: Mr Chairman, I think we went into this at great length yesterday, just prior to 6 of the clock. I thought that both Mr Gauley and Mrs Sutherland from the town of New Tecumseth enlightened us as to why this line was drawn in the first place. Because some of the discussion centred around the fact that under the current restructuring the rule appears to be that there has to be agreement between the municipalities, I will remind members to set that aside in their heads for a moment, given that under the rules of the south Simcoe restructuring there was no such rule in place when the Liberals restructured the south end; for example, New Tecumseth never agreed that this line should be drawn along the ditches west of Highway 27. If you put yourself in that frame of mind, then the rule that townships must agree does not apply.

Mr Chairman, it may be appropriate, as I think here on the fly, to set this aside, because I am waiting for a fax from New Tecumseth which indicates its most recent proposal to Bradford-West Gwillimbury with respect to buying back this portion of land which historically has always been theirs.

The Chair: I believe as well that at the end of the day yesterday there was some discussion that we would defer the boundary changes and do those at the end and try to deal with the rest of the bill. I'm in the committee's hands, but we did have that discussion. If we stood that down, that might also assist you in the point you just made. Okay. If we stand that down, do I understand as well that we would stand down all the other motions, Mr McLean and Mr Wilson, because they all deal with boundaries?


The Chair: They will be moved later. We will stand down what Mr Wilson has just read into the record and the others will be moved later. Agreed?

Mr Paul Wessenger (Simcoe Centre): Mr Chair, should we also stand down all of section 2, in view of that?

The Chair: That is perhaps the best way. We'll stand down section 2. Agreed? Agreed.

If we stand down section 2, we then move to section 3. I have a government amendment, the parliamentary assistant.

Mr Hayes: I move that clauses 3(1)(a), (b) and (c) of the bill be struck out and the following substituted:

"(a) three additional members who shall be elected by general vote in the case of the township of Tiny and by wards in the case of the township of Essa;

"(b) five additional members who shall be elected by general vote in the case of the town of Wasaga Beach and by wards in the case of,

"(i) the township of Adjala and Tosorontio,

"(ii) the township of Oro/Medonte,

"(iii) the township of Severn, and

"(iv) the township of Ramara; and

"(c) seven additional members who shall be elected by general vote in the case of the town of Collingwood and by wards in the case of all other local municipalities not mentioned in clauses (a) and (b)."

The Chair: Any comments? Mr Wessenger.

Mr Wessenger: I'd just like to express some concern with respect to one municipality that's named here, that is, the township of Tiny having the vote at large. The particular reason for that is that the township of Tiny has a substantial francophone population designated in a particular area, and I have a concern that by having the votes at large we're taking away the representation on the council of that group. As a result of that, I will not be supporting this motion.

The Chair: Any further discussion?

Mr Sean G. Conway (Renfrew North): The member for Simcoe Centre makes a good point, but I didn't hear any evidence on that subject. I know the area reasonably well so I certainly understand what Mr Wessenger has said. But the purport of this is to not accept Professor Ellis's submission that there should be, by legislative mandate, a ward system imposed on Tiny township, taking into account the tension that appears to exist between the permanent residents and at least some of the seasonal residents.


The Chair: Mr Wilson and then the parliamentary assistant, if it's on this point.

Mr Hayes: If I could try to explain so we don't go around the world on this thing, first of all, Tiny does not have a ward system now and actually, if it chose to do so, could apply to the OMB; the residents could petition, as a matter of fact.

Mr Jim Wilson: The parliamentary assistant is correct. I just want to say two things. First, I'm grateful to the government with respect to the request from the town of Wasaga Beach and the town of Collingwood to not impose a ward system there. I would hope that this motion, if it's problematic with respect to Tiny, would be amended to ensure that Collingwood and Wasaga Beach are able to continue to have elections by general vote. I know we have the agreement of the government on that matter.

With respect to Tiny, to add to that debate, my recollection from a number of the witnesses appearing on behalf of the cottagers' associations is that they wanted a ward system. We heard a lot of unfriendly words used like "nepotism" and "monopolies" and that sort of thing. The cottagers did, I think, bring forward some compelling evidence with respect to their large numbers that in fact a ward system would be to their benefit. I don't have any personal opinion one way or the other. If the government doesn't want to proceed with Tiny in this amendment, that's fine, but I would remind members of that debate.

Mr Allan K. McLean (Simcoe East): I think Mr Ellis made it very clear that they certainly wanted a ward system. I think it was indicated by the ministry that 150 signatures would allow that to happen. I have to consider the fact that Oro township and Orillia township have a lot of waterfront. They have a ward system. I think it would be to the advantage of the municipality to have a ward system, the same as the others. They're going to apply for it within a year through a petition, so maybe there should be serious consideration given to asking them to be part of the ward system.

Mr Hayes: First of all, the county did not want a ward system there, the representatives from Tiny did not want a representative there, and there is a procedure, as I mentioned, that the residents, if they so choose, can petition in a general procedure to do it.

The Chair: Mr Eddy, a final comment.

Mr Ron Eddy (Brant-Haldimand): It's just a question. Then why is Tiny township in the bill as being wards? Was that an oversight or something? It's already in the bill that Tiny township have wards, and this reflects the views of Simcoe county council, I thought.

Mr Hayes: What has happened is that the county actually made a recommendation that all municipalities be under a ward system, and some chose not to be. That's why this is here.

Mr Conway: Now we've got a problem. Let's just think about this. What we've got --

Mr Hayes: If I may, Mr Chair, I'll ask Mr Griggs if he can clarify this.

Mr Jeremy Griggs: The original recommendation that was endorsed by county council was that all of the new municipalities should operate under a ward system, and that's the way the bill was written. Since that time, a number of municipalities wrote to the minister requesting that they be allowed to maintain elections at large. The response, as I understand it, was, "If county council concurs because of this general recommendation it had made, we will make an exception for you." Tiny, Wasaga Beach and Collingwood all passed resolutions in their local councils that they maintain elections at large and got a motion through county council that the bill be amended to reflect that.

I should also point out that the principle behind the general rule that was endorsed by county council was that where you have municipalities amalgamating, there should be a ward system established to provide for representation to the traditional communities in those areas. In fact, Collingwood, Wasaga Beach and Tiny in all cases are not being amalgamated with other municipalities. In the cases of Wasaga Beach and Collingwood, there are areas being annexed to the two towns; in the case of Tiny, there are areas being transferred to other municipalities.

Mr Conway: I appreciate that, but I think the question then remains, given what we're doing here and what Mr Wessenger, Mr McLean and Mr Wilson have said, what is the end result going to be and what did the committee hear? I appreciate what you've done with this amendment, but I think there is the outstanding question of Tiny. I certainly heard some pretty compelling evidence that makes me want to seriously incline towards a ward system for Tiny, on the basis of what I heard.

The Chair: We have a proposed government amendment. The arguments have been stated. Unless there is further comment, I would put the question: Shall the government amendment to clauses 3(1)(a), (b) and (c) --

Mr Wessenger: Perhaps we could have an amendment to this motion that in clause (a) the words "the township of Tiny and" be deleted. Perhaps I should write that out.

The Chair: Mr Wessenger, are you placing an amendment to the government amendment?

Interjection: You just have to strike it out, because then it reverts back to the original.

Mr Wessenger: Okay. I move that clause (a) be deleted.

The Chair: Could I ask legislative counsel to address this?

Mr Wessenger: Legislative counsel recommended that that's the language to be used.

Ms Lucinda Mifsud: It would revert back to clause 3(1)(a) in the bill, which I believe makes them both by wards. So we just have to deal with clauses (b) and (c) if that's what the committee wants and not clause (a).

The Chair: Any questions on that?

Mr Eddy: One of the problems here is that we're imposing rules on these municipalities where all other municipalities have the right to establish wards or by general vote. My problem is imposing something that the present council wants. If the next council wants to change it, they should be able to. That's my question of the government.

Later, if a municipality wants to change from municipal elections on the basis of a general vote from a ward vote -- or the other way around, which is more probable -- can it do that under the Municipal Act? That still will be possible, will it?

Mr Griggs: I believe the next amendment we'll be hearing addressed that issue. I guess we'll talk about it at that time.

Mr Hayes: I can appreciate what the members are saying, but the only problem I have with a situation like this is that you have a duly elected county council and a duly elected municipal council and they have chosen to go a certain way, and we're saying, because some people complain, that we're going to go the other way on this. I have a problem with supporting them in it.

Mr Conway: That, I think, is a legitimate concern. I look at what we've got then in Simcoe county -- maybe we don't need to do this, maybe the mechanism is good enough, but boy, what I heard. With the Tiny township situation, I feel a bit like Lord Durham, who came expecting a citizenry at war with its elected government, but rather I found two nations warring within the bosom of a single state. Tiny township is not a happy place, on the basis of what I heard.


I said earlier in this proceeding that I'm a cottager. As to Professor Ellis's comments, boy, I'll tell you, I would feel very nervous if he were representing me in Renfrew county as a cottager because that's certainly not going to lower the temperature, but there is apparently a pretty ongoing tension up there around the relationships between the permanent residents and -- looking at some of the numbers I have here, in Tiny you've got permanent residents, according to the 1988 data, of 7,400, and the total number of electors is about 17,000. Maybe it's typical of a lot of the Georgian Bay communities, but that's a very --

Mr McLean: I think the discussion we've had around this very issue will cause Tiny to consider whether it may want to change it. I think the discussion we've had has been good because it has brought the concerns out that were raised by Mr Ellis, and I'm sure the municipality will maybe have a second look at it on its own.

Mr Conway: All right. That may be the way to do it.

The Chair: Now we have an amendment to the government amendment moved by Mr Wessenger, and I would just ask legislative counsel to read that one last time and then I will call the vote on the amendment to the amendment.

Ms Mifsud: The opening flush of the motion should read, "I move that clauses 3(1)(b) and (c) of the bill be struck out and the following substituted," and cross out (a) and just deal with (b) and (c).

The Chair: That is the amendment to the amendment. Shall the amendment to the amendment carry? All in favour? Opposed? The amendment to the amendment is defeated.

We now go to the government amendment to clauses 3(1)(a), (b) and (c). Shall the government amendment carry? All in favour? Opposed? Carried.

Shall section 3, as amended, carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried.

We then move to section 4 of the bill. Do we have a government amendment, parliamentary assistant?

Mr Hayes: I move that clauses 4(1)(b) and (c) of the bill be struck out and the following substituted:

"(b) alter or dissolve any or all of the wards in the local municipality;

"(c) determine the number of members the council of the local municipality shall have in addition to the mayor and deputy mayor, and, if the local municipality has wards, determine the number of additional members to be elected from each ward."

The Chair: Any comments?

Mr Hayes: Simcoe county council originally recommended that all new municipalities have councils elected by wards. Since then, the county council has passed resolutions requesting that the township of Tiny and the towns of Collingwood and Wasaga Beach be allowed to maintain elections by general vote rather than by wards. This amendment allows all of the new municipalities in Simcoe to apply to the Ontario Municipal Board to dissolve any or all wards and to alter the number of members of council.

Mr Jim Wilson: I'm supportive of this amendment, and I would like for the record a clarification of the petition procedure that's mentioned in subsection 4(1) with respect to the Municipal Act. For the record, how might citizens access that portion of the act?

The Chair: Mr Griggs.

Mr Griggs: I'm going to have to consult with our --

Mr Jim Wilson: While that's occurring, subsequent to that my concern is with -- I've mentioned it earlier in the hearings -- the dissolution of the villages of Everett and Angus, for example, in my riding. Take Angus, for example: A number of citizens have been worried that even under the new ward system, as they lose their three village trustees now, that they won't have enough representation out of the ward system on the new township of Essa council.

I want to make clear for the record two things. One is how they might petition this if they want a ward divided. My question would be, can you add a ward under this? If that were answered I think that would suffice, but there's also a clarification needed with respect to another section of the act that I believe says that the new council, ie, the new township of Essa, has until December 31 of this year to submit to the government its final proposal on where the wards will be in Essa; just a clarification on that, please.

Mr Griggs: You requested a clarification regarding petitions to the OMB by electors regarding ward systems. Let me just read the section to you. It's subsection 13(3) of the Municipal Act, and this is regarding the establishment of wards by the Ontario Municipal Board.

"A petition of 75 electors in a municipality having not more than 5,000 electors and of 150 electors in a municipality having more than 5,000 electors may be presented to the council of any local municipality requesting the council to make an application to the municipal board to divide or redivide the municipality into wards, and, if the council refuses or neglects to make the application within one month after the receipt by the clerk of the petition, the petitioners or any of them may apply to the municipal board for the division or a new division of the municipality into wards, and the municipal board, despite any general or special act, may divide or redivide the municipality into wards in the manner provided in subsection (1) and shall declare the date when the division or redivision shall take effect."

That reference to subsection (1) states,

"When a municipality is incorporated or erected, the municipal board shall divide a city and may divide any other local municipality into wards, and shall designate the name or number each ward shall bear."

Mr Jim Wilson: Thank you. Was I correct with respect to the December 31 date for the proposed wards?

Mr Griggs: You're referring to the submission of ward proposals by the municipalities? Let me just check that for you.

Mr Jim Wilson: I'm thinking along the line that between now and that date, my advice to the people of the former village of Angus would be to lobby the current council of the township of Essa and see that they get the best deal possible.

Mr Griggs: The section is subsection 44(1) in the bill on page 33, and it states, "A proposal shall be submitted on behalf of a local municipality" -- I won't read it word for word, but the date is December 1, 1993.

Mr Jim Wilson: December 1. Thank you very much.

The Chair: Shall the government amendment carry? Those in favour? Opposed? Carried.

Shall section 4 of the bill, as amended, carry? Carried.

Shall section 5 of the bill carry? Those in favour? Opposed? Carried.

Shall section 6 of the bill carry? Carried.

We have a government amendment to section 7. Parliamentary assistant.

Mr Hayes: I move that paragraph 3 of subsection 7(2) of the bill be amended by striking out "one or two votes" in the fifth line and substituting "the same number as or one vote."

On that, the Simcoe county study committee recommended that the new multiple voting system for county council provide that when a municipality has an even number of votes, the mayor have two more votes than the deputy mayor. When it reviewed the study committee's report, county council amended the recommendation to provide that when a municipality has an even number of votes, the mayor and the deputy mayor have an equal number of votes. This amendment accurately reflects the recommended multiple voting system endorsed by county council.

Mr Eddy: This is an improvement, and I support it. It follows what happens in other councils.

The Chair: Shall the government amendment carry? Carried.

Shall section 7, as amended, carry? Carried.

Shall section 8 of the bill carry? Those in favour? Opposed? Carried.

There is a motion from the Conservative caucus. Mr Wilson.


Mr Jim Wilson: With respect to section 9, I move that section 9 of the bill be struck out.

The Chair: That motion is out of order. You simply indicate that by voting against the section, but the motion itself is out of order.

Mr Jim Wilson: Why is it out of order?

The Chair: I knew you were going to ask me that.

Mr Jim Wilson: Because a number of witnesses asked for it.

The Chair: Yes. As I understand, it's a parliamentary procedure, but you cannot move that a section be struck out. What you do is vote against it, unless it's being replaced. If you were striking it out and replacing it with something, but otherwise you indicate your opposition.

Mr Jim Wilson: May I speak to opposing section 9?

The Chair: I'm sure there's something deep within Robert's Rules of Order, and I would permit a brief comment.

Mr Jim Wilson: Thank you, Mr Chairman. I do now recall having had this occur on other committees. While I would encourage that members of the committee vote against section 9 when the question is put --

The Chair: Wait a minute. Maybe I should have section 9 put, and then your remarks would relate directly to the issue. Shall section 9 be carried?

Mr Jim Wilson: I'd encourage members not to carry this section, given that a number of witnesses felt, although it is a permissive clause and it's permissive only, that it certainly did stir up concern with a number of municipalities that appeared before the committee.

The concern seems to be that the current status quo -- I know it's a redundant term -- but the county council recently by bylaw instituted the practice that there would only be a one-vote system per municipality on its committees of county council. I think there's concern there that with the appearance of section 9 in this bill and perhaps a misunderstanding, that the current practice may somehow get undone. To be safe, I'm recommending that we vote against this section, thereby deleting it from the bill.

The Chair: Shall section 9 of the bill carry?

Mr Eddy: This is a question, but I'd like clarification, because this provision of course is in the Municipal Act for any county council to adopt and remains there. As this is a Simcoe county bill but does not limit the county of Simcoe to specific service provisions in the act, I would expect it's still there, and all I'm saying is it would still be possible.

The Chair: The parliamentary assistant?

Mr Hayes: First of all, my understanding is, like Mr Eddy has said, it's the Simcoe act of 1988 and it is permissive. I guess what has happened here is they already have this act and it's taking it and transferring it to this piece of legislation. Maybe Mr Griggs can clarify further.

Mr Griggs: Yes, I can clarify this issue. Under section 65 of this bill, which is on page 51, the County of Simcoe Act, 1988, is repealed on December 1, 1994. This section 9 is a current section in that private bill and again it is permissive, and in fact the authority also does exist in the Municipal Act. So it's continuing an existing provision allowing the county council to make these decisions.

The Chair: Shall section 9 of the bill carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried.

Could I just note for members, there is one PC motion which indicates section 10 and which should really be section 11, so I'm now going to move section 10.

Shall section 10 of the bill carry? In favour? Carried.

We then move to section 11.

Mr Jim Wilson: I ask that this motion not be introduced at this time. I'm awaiting a fax from the town of Stayner indicating its support for the motion.

The Chair: Okay. We'll stand down your motion. Shall we stand down this section? No, this is the PC motion which reads "Section 10," but should be, "Section 11."

Mr Conway: The one concerning Stayner?

The Chair: Yes.

Mr Conway: The township of Nottawasaga? That one?

Mr Jim Wilson: Concerning the hydro-electric.

The Chair: Shall we then also stand down the government motion, 11(15), and just come back to that section along with section 2?

Mr Hayes: No. Our amendment does not really affect, I don't believe, the PC motion so we could deal with this.

The Chair: We will deal with that but we will not deal with the section as a whole because we'll come back. Okay, so we'll now go forward --

Mr Daniel Waters (Muskoka-Georgian Bay): Shouldn't we deal with subsection 11(9)?

The Chair: I believe that 11(9) relates to --


The Chair: Yes. We'll then defer the two PC motions, section 11 and subsection 11(9). We'll now deal with the government motion 11(15). Parliamentary assistant?

Mr Hayes: I move that subsection 11(15) of the bill be struck out and the following substituted:


"(15) Despite subsection (9), the councils of the township of Mara and the township of Rama may, if they both pass a bylaw so providing during 1993, provide that only two members be elected to the commission for the term commencing December 1, 1994, and all subsequent terms, but bylaws passed under this subsection shall not be repealed after December 31, 1993."

Subsection 11(15) provides that the township of Ramara, made by bylaw passed during 1993, provides that only two members be elected to their hydro-electric commission for the term commencing December 1, 1994.

During the hearings the township of Mara indicated that the township of Ramara will not exist until January 1, 1994. So the statute would be impossible for the new township to pass such a bylaw during 1993. This amendment addresses the concern by providing for passing of similar bylaws by both townships.

The Chair: Shall the government amendment carry? Carried. We will not move section 11 as yet.

Shall section 12 carry? Carried.

Shall section 13 of the bill carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried.

Shall section 14 of the bill carry? Carried.

Okay, then we come to section 15. Parliamentary assistant, is there a government motion?

Mr Hayes: I move that subsection 15(6) of the bill be amended by striking out "township" in the third line and substituting "town."

As it is currently written, subsection 15(6) refers to the township of Bradford-West Gwillimbury. This amendment corrects this error so that subsection 15(6) will refer to the town of Bradford-West Gwillimbury, and that's housekeeping.

The Chair: Shall the government amendment carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried.

Shall section 15 of the bill, as amended, carry? Carried.

Shall section 16 of the bill carry? In favour? Carried.

Shall section 17 of the bill carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried.

Shall section 18 of the bill carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried.

Shall section 20 of the bill carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried.

Shall section 21 of the bill carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried.

Shall section 22 of the bill carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried.

Shall section 23 of the bill carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried.

Shall section 24 of the bill carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried.

Shall section 25 of the bill carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried.

One second. Deep breath. The clerk has made a marvellous suggestion. Shall all sections up to and including 33 carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried. I am indebted to the clerk, as I'm indeed sure all members are. May I simply comment on how fortunate we are to have such a clerk.


I have a motion -- Mr Waters, I believe -- to section 34, which you may want to do something with.

Mr Waters: It's my understanding --

The Chair: If it's out of order --

Mr Wessenger: We can vote against it.

Mr Waters: We can vote against 34 and then that, therefore, does the same thing. We can speak to it. I think section 34 -- I know, the people I represent in the northern part of the county feel very strongly that this was like a red flag, that there is under the Municipal Act powers for Barrie and Orillia to annex; they don't need it written in the County of Simcoe Act. In fact even the mayor of Barrie was gracious enough to admit that she didn't need this. Therefore, I would recommend that we vote this down.

Mr Jim Wilson: I'd just want to indicate for the record our agreement with Mr Waters on this matter.

Mr Conway: I agree. I think there was a very clear consensus that this was an unhelpful section and it is best to be done away with.

Mr McLean: May I just have a minute on this or less? The mayor of the city of Orillia felt very strongly that this section should be kept in the act -- although I'm quite familiar with the Municipal Boundary Negotiations Act and indicated that it didn't matter whether it was in or not; it really doesn't. However, he felt that they were getting something from the ministry to pacify them when they were kicked off the restructuring committee. It made them feel good, but I know then they know the facts about it. It really doesn't matter whether it's in there or not as far as I'm concerned, but I just wanted to let you know that he did want it left in.

Mr Wessenger: Perhaps I should just also add that in my discussions with the city of Barrie council they also indicated they wished it in even though it is only permissive and had no legal effect. But I just thought that should be on the record.

The Chair: I will then call the motion. Shall section 34 of the bill carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried.


The Chair: I'm sorry. Ayes and nays then, just to be clear, okay? Shall section 34 of the bill stand? All those in favour? A recorded vote has been asked for. All those in favour of section 34?


The Chair: No, as it is in the bill.

All those in favour? All those opposed?


Conway, Eddy, Hayes, McLean, O'Connor, Owens, Rizzo, Waters, Wessenger, Wilson (Simcoe West).

The Chair: So section 34 of the bill is deleted.

I'm just getting carried away with all these "In favours." Just slow down here. Could we then move -- shall sections 35, 36, 37 and 38 of the bill carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried. So 35, 36, 37, 38 are --

Mr McLean: Just a minute, Mr Chairman. There has been some discussion on section 38 with regard to the appointment under the Public Transportation and Highway Improvement Act, and I want a clarification if that has anything to do with suburban roads.

The Chair: All right. The question relates to suburban roads. Mr Griggs?

Mr Griggs: Yes, my understanding is that the county council endorsed a recommendation of the study committee that the suburban roads commissions be dissolved, and through an arrangement with the cities they decided that they should continue some form of representation from the cities on a county roads committee to deal with issues regarding suburban roads, even though the commissions would no longer exist.

Mr McLean: Could I have a clarification? I thought I saw some amendment that had to do with --

Mr Griggs: Yes, that's 39(5).

Mr McLean: Oh, okay.

The Chair: Okay? Mr Eddy, you had a question on 38?

Mr Eddy: Actually, I think it's 36 and the question is about limiting the amount that can and will be contributed by the two separated cities to what were accounted as suburban roads and now the county roads system.

I'm not clear on how the limit is placed and I wonder why, if indeed it is a limit, it's being placed, because under the Public Transportation and Highway Improvement Act, part VIII, suburban roads, the formula used for contribution by those separated municipalities in a county system to the suburban road system is a formula devised by the Minister of Transportation of the province of Ontario and that can change. It's the equalized assessment of the separated municipality as modified by the minister. It seems to me this is being put in a special case. If it happens, it'll be the only special case like it in the province, other than the city of London, of course, where there's a buyout situation with Middlesex county.

The Chair: Did I hear Middlesex?


Mr Eddy: No, I'm right this time. It isn't that other system. But all the others are the same. It doesn't limit the contribution to the roads by the two separated cities.

Mr Hayes: I could ask Mr Griggs to clarify this, but also, at the same time, maybe if you could just bear with us for a minute and we'll get the amendment for 39(5). It may address your concern.

The Chair: With that, then, can I again ask, shall sections 35, 36, 37 and 38 carry? Carried.

Section 39, government amendment.

Mr Hayes: I move that subsection 39(5) of the bill be struck out and the following substituted:

"(5) Subsection 68(3) and sections 69, 70 and 71 of the Public Transportation and Highway Improvement Act apply with necessary modifications to designated county roads."

Simcoe county council recommended that the Barrie and Orillia suburban roads commissions be dissolved and replaced by a cost-sharing arrangement between the cities and the county. Now, the Ministry of Transportation of Ontario expressed concern that the cost-sharing arrangement established in the bill did not provide for the existing limitation on city contributions to the county. The absence of such limits would adversely affect the calculation of a county's roads grants from MTO. This amendment will provide for the continuation of the current limitation on contributions from Barrie and Orillia for suburban roads in Simcoe. I think that addresses your concern, Ron.

Mr McLean: Does that put a minimum? It's a half a mill. Is that going to part of this --

Interjection: It's half a mill.

Mr McLean: That's what I want clarified. Is it a minimum of half a mill or is it a maximum of half a mill.

Mr Griggs: It's a maximum of half a mill. There is a provision that exists for all cities where there's a suburban roads commission that they can bump it up to two mills with some form of agreement. It's basically continuing the existing situation regarding contributions from the cities.

The Chair: Shall the government amendment carry? Carried.

Shall section 39 of the bill, as amended, carry? Carried.

We then have a government amendment to section 40.

Mr Hayes: I move that subsection 40(1) of the bill be amended by,

(a) striking out "40.733" in the fifth line and substituting "40.8472";

(b) striking out "34.393" in paragraph 1 and substituting "34.5072."

That sounds pretty well self-explanatory.

The Chair: Before discussion, I would just remind members of the mathematical test at the end of this clause-by-clause.

Mr Hayes: Subsection 40(1) of the bill maintains the current arrangements regarding distribution of costs, operating, maintaining and repairing the Holland Marsh drainage scheme in the town of Bradford-West Gwillimbury and it continues a provision of Bill 177 and the south Simcoe legislation. Since the passing of Bill 177, the percentages involved have been amended. As such, the current percentages described in the bill regarding the costs attributed to the town and to be assessed against the lands benefiting from the drainage works are incorrect. This amendment will provide for the correct distribution of these costs.


Mr Conway: Take your word for it, Pat.

The Chair: Shall the amendment carry? Carried.

Shall section 40, as amended, carry? Carried.

Unless anyone has any comments on sections 41, 42 or 43, I will call then those sections. No comments? Shall sections 41, 42 and 43 of the bill carry? Carried.

Section 44: Parliamentary assistant, there is a government amendment.

Mr Hayes: I move that subsection 44(1) of the bill be amended by inserting after "municipality" in the second line "except the township of Tiny, the town of Wasaga Beach and the town of Collingwood."

Simcoe county council originally recommended that all new municipalities have councils elected by wards. Since then, county council has passed resolutions requesting that the township of Tiny and the towns of Collingwood and Wasaga Beach be allowed to maintain elections by general vote rather than by wards. This amendment exempts Tiny, Collingwood and Wasaga Beach from the requirement to submit ward proposals to the minister.

The Chair: Shall the government amendment carry? Carried.

There's another government amendment. Parliamentary assistant, you have an amendment to 44(2)(a).

Mr Hayes: Yes, Mr Chairman.

I move that clause 44(2)(a) of the bill be amended by striking out "the town of Collingwood, the town of Wasaga Beach, the township of Tiny" in the fifth, sixth and seventh lines.

The Chair: Shall the government amendment carry? Carried.

Now, shall section 44, as amended, carry? Carried.

We then move to section 45. We have a government amendment.

Mr Hayes: I move that clause 45(1)(b) of the bill be amended by striking out "1996" and substituting "1997."

The Chair: Comment?

Mr Hayes: The township of Tay expressed the concern that the time provided for the consolidation of the bylaws passed by the former municipalities by the new township of Tay would be inadequate. This amendment addresses this concern by providing each of the new municipalities until the end of the term of the first elected municipal council to consolidate bylaws.

The Chair: Shall the government amendment carry? Carried.

Shall section 45, as amended, carry? Carried.

Now, if I could just say to members -- I would call then sections 46 through 52, but if there was -- I'll just give members a moment to cast their eyes over those, but we have no amendments from 46 through 52.

Interjection: One moment, please.

The Chair: Yes, I will give you all just a second to have a quick look in case anyone -- Mr Wilson.

Mr Jim Wilson: Just a question on 47, to the parliamentary assistant. The question arose by Mr Ted Hannan, who's the chief administrative officer for the amalgamated Clearview. He wanted to know, and I don't think we had a chance yesterday to respond to it, whether an asset -- I'll just read it exactly. He says: "Probably the most contentious issue is reserves and whether or not they're a capital asset. If you use reserve for a capital project, have you simply transferred an asset of cash to some other form of capital asset?" Rather important because of what's going on in the transitional councils now. Have we got a response to that?

Mr Hayes: Yes. Linda Perron from the legal department.

The Chair: If you would, Linda, just identify yourself for Hansard.

Mrs Linda Perron: Linda Perron, solicitor, legal services branch, Ministry of Municipal Affairs. I think, in reading section 47, it's important to carry through and continue on to read subsection 47(3), which provides that, "The minister may by regulation define capital asset for the purpose of this section." So this provision is there as a precautionary measure and, depending on the circumstances which may evolve in the next few months before this comes into effect, the provision could be used.

Mr Jim Wilson: Further clarification.

The Chair: Yes.

Mr Jim Wilson: We haven't seen the regulations so we don't know what the minister's --

Mrs Perron: And there's no regulation that's been prepared at this time.

Mr Jim Wilson: So what is the definition of a capital asset?

Mrs Perron: We have not defined it at this time.

Mr Jim Wilson: What about cash, though, in reserves? I think that's the question.

Mrs Perron: It could be.

Mr Jim Wilson: What about in this interim period, though, if cash is being used up by the current municipalities? For example, I think Mr Hannan was posing the question, in a polite way, what if a municipality used up all its reserves now, is there a penalty if later that is called a capital asset?

Mr Griggs: I might refer you to section 67 on page 51, which provides for the commencement of section 47 when this -- sorry. It provides --

The Chair: Which section, Jeremy?

Mr Griggs: Subsection 67(2), and it provides that a number of sections of the bill come into force on the day the act receives royal assent, so that will establish the period from which this section will apply. In other words, from the date that this act receives royal assent, "A former municipality shall not, without the approval of the minister, convey or agree to convey any capital asset."

Mr Jim Wilson: Mr Hannan did address that, so I'll just go on to read what he said in his brief. Again, it says:

"If you use a reserve for a capital project, have you simply transferred an asset of cash to some other form of capital asset? Is this a conveyance?

"Further, if a municipality does dispose of or convey a capital asset valued at more than $25,000, what are the penalties, who is responsible and who establishes the value of a capital asset?"

Finally, he says:

"If we are looking at January 1, 1994, as the implementation date, the lateness in the calendar for third reading and royal assent probably makes section 47 redundant. It is a section that, if left in, may come back to haunt us at some future date."

Is there any comment on that from the government?

Mrs Perron: First of all, I will comment on the enforcement aspect of it. In subsection 47(1) it clearly states that, "A former municipality shall not, without the approval...convey or agree to convey a capital asset." In effect, a conveyance would be invalid and it would be up to someone to challenge the validity of an agreement or transfer, so there wouldn't be any policing mechanism set up for that purpose.

Mr Jim Wilson: But you would wait for a complaint.

Mrs Perron: Or the complainant -- for example, I guess, a ratepayer could apply to quash the bylaw which authorized the conveyance.

Mr Jim Wilson: Okay, that does clear it up.

Mrs Perron: Or it would be illegal and ultimately the contract providing for this transfer would not be legal.

Mr Jim Wilson: But what happens once the cash is gone?

Mrs Perron: Then perhaps restitution would have to be made, depending on how the parties settled it or, if the courts became involved, to trace how the money was actually disposed of and arrange for full restitution to be made.

Secondly, I think the gentleman is very correct in the sense that depending on when -- this will be in effect during the period between royal assent and January 1, 1994, because subsection 47(1) makes it clear that this restriction applies to a former municipality. Basically, that principle or that language will disappear by January 1, so the longer it takes to get third reading and royal assent, I guess, the shorter the period of time this will apply is correct.


Mr Jim Wilson: Thank you very much. That does clear it up. Mr Chairman, for the record, I don't anticipate any problems, but I did want a clarification on that.

The Chair: Then may I ask, shall sections 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51 and 52 carry?

Mr McLean: No. There are some amendments which will have a bearing on section 50, both by myself and by Mr Wilson, and if those amendments carry, then that will change some of the --

The Chair: I'm sorry. Do we have --

Mr Waters: Do you want section 50 stood down?

Mr McLean: Yes, section 50.

The Chair: Okay. We don't have those amendments but you will be moving those.

Mr McLean: It has to deal with the boundary change.

The Chair: All right. So section 50 then, we'll stand that down. Okay, so then let me reput the question. Shall sections 46, 47, 48 and 49 carry? Carried.

Shall section 51 carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried.

Shall section 52 carry? Carried.

Now section 53, there's a government amendment. Parliamentary assistant.

Mr Hayes: I move that clause 53(9)(a) be amended by adding at the end "subject to any reductions resulting from the Social Contract Act, 1993."

Subsection 53(9) provides that persons who become employees of one of the local municipalities or local boards under section 53 will receive a salary no less than they were receiving on July 1, 1993. During the hearings a number of municipalities expressed concerns regarding the effect of the Social Contract Act on subsection 53(9). This amendment addresses this concern by stating that adjustments resulting from the Social Contract Act will be taken into account in the protection of employees' salaries.

The Chair: Shall the government amendment carry? Carried.

Shall section 53 --

Mr Waters: There's another amendment.

The Chair: Yes, sorry. There is another. Mr Waters.

Mr Waters: I move that section 53 of the bill be amended by adding the following subsections:

"Contracts of employment, etc.

"53(12) Despite this or any other act, the minister may, by regulation, amend or repeal all or part of a contract of employment or a collective agreement entered into between one or more employees of a former municipality or a local board thereof or a bargaining agent of the employees of a former municipality or local board thereof and a former municipality or local board thereof, if in the opinion of the minister the contract of employment or collective agreement would result in any unfairness among the employees of a municipality or local board thereof."


"(13) A regulation under subsection (12) may be retroactive to January 1, 1994."

The Chair: Comment, Mr Waters?

Mr Waters: It has to do with some special contracts that were issued, is why it came to my attention, in the township of Orillia. The township entered into these contracts, I believe, in 1991, after the Simcoe county restructuring discussions had started. Some of it is a generous notice of termination of 36 months. Duties and responsibilities cannot be altered unless the employees agree to it. If the township enters into an amalgamation with any other municipality, the employee may request and the employer must pay a lump sum equal to 36 months' remuneration. The contracts also purport to bind the successor municipalities, and I think this puts an unfair burden on a new township.

Mr Stephen Owens (Scarborough Centre): This may be a question for legislative counsel or for some of the legal minds in the room, but do we as a committee or as a government actually have the authority to put a section like this into a bill?

Mr Eddy: Like the social contract.

Mr Owens: Well, no, I understand that. You're talking about a relatively individualized situation, and I'm concerned that we may be going outside the bounds of our jurisdiction.

The Chair: Can I take that question, Mr Wilson, as a comment on the same issue, and then we'll have the parliamentary assistant deal with those. Mr Wilson.

Mr Jim Wilson: Really, a couple of comments. Mr Chairman, I find it shocking that the NDP, particularly Mr Waters, who's a union organizer, is willing to put this motion forward to deal with a particular problem in the township of Orillia, given that it gives the minister pretty sweeping powers to open up contracts.

Having said that, if there's a problem with the township of Orillia, perhaps the motion could be amended to deal specifically with that problem, because the way it's worded, it will affect all employees in all municipalities in the county of Simcoe. I think that is unfair and that you're asking for far too broad a power grab here.

Mr Wessenger: I just have some concern about the extent of this provision and I agree in fact -- one of the times I will agree with Mr Wilson -- that if you're going to do something, we ought to really limit it to a particular situation rather than have the broad brush.

I have a concern on more a less a philosophical point of view that, you know, do we have the right to make a second judgement with respect to the decision of a duly elected municipality? I think that's a difficult question and we are in effect overriding that decision. Normally, I would suggest that the only time you do an override of a decision is if you believe the decision was made in bad faith, as distinct from being a mistake in judgement.

I just thought I'd throw that out. I haven't really decided myself how I'm going to deal with this matter or vote on it yet, but I do have some concerns.

The Chair: Mr Conway.

Mr Conway: I'll yield to Dan first.

The Chair: Mr Conway yields to Dan.

Mr Waters: When I looked at this, the reason why I looked at something that was broader than just Orillia and the new township of Severn specifically is that Matchedash found out about this almost by accident. We don't know whether this exists somewhere else within the county, whether somebody else has cut, I guess for lack of a better word, a sweetheart deal with their employees and done that after the restructuring discussions had started. So I think that to limit to one group and not allow everyone within the township the same rights and privileges would be difficult.

Mr Conway: I gather that the amendment speaks to a situation in one township that we know of where what in Renfrew we would call a sweetheart deal appears to have been made that would not perhaps be very popular if generally understood by the ratepayers in the community. That, I think, is what the motion speaks to, and I think that the member is right to bring this to our attention.

Was anybody here -- remember the Rod Lewis deal? What an embarrassment that was for the then government, of which I was a part. You couldn't explain that. There was no explaining that to the taxpayers in the good old days of the mid-1980s. These are the 1990s, when taxes are high, unemployment is higher. You know, times are tough.

Boy, I'll tell you, I think that the member draws our attention to a very legitimate concern. If, in the name of restructuring, deals that are just not very defensible have been made and people who were not privy to those end up paying for them, as may be the case in Matchedash, then I think we've got a real problem.


I think there is probably a bit of a consensus around the concern here, and both Mr Wilson and Mr Wessenger point to whether this is the appropriate instrument. I'm wondering whether or not we might just want to think about this for a bit and put it aside for just a little while to see whether or not we can do something here that is sensible.

The Chair: On this point, I had Mr McLean and Mr Owens again.

Mr McLean: I don't think anybody can say that there is some sweetheart deal made when they don't know the facts of the whole situation. I believe that the municipality made an arrangement with some employees to protect them from being hired by other municipalities, and whatever arrangement it made and whatever deal it made was made knowing full well of any consequences that may come from it.

I don't think that we can accuse somebody of a sweetheart deal when that municipality made it in the best interests of its taxpayers and the protection of its taxpayers because of the expansion of the municipality, the new administrations that it was building, and it wanted to keep certain employees within its employment.

If they made a special deal, and I don't know what the deal is all about, but I understand the contract runs out this year, the new municipality, I'm sure, will deal with it in a manner which would be acceptable to all the new people of the township of Severn.

Mr Jim Wilson: Following on that, when you look at subsection 53(13) you see that regulation is going to be established, I assume, to make it more specific to the case involved. But I, first of all, oppose that. If we're trying to deal with a specific problem in that amalgamated municipality, then the motion should deal with that.

Secondly, I object to the phraseology in subsection 53(12) where it says, "would result in any unfairness among the employees of a municipality or local board thereof." "Unfairness" is a rather arbitrary word, and interpretation of fairness is left up to the minister. It does remind me of the social contract, and one of the problems we had was the Treasurer had the exclusive authority to decide whether a local agreement or sectoral agreement was fair or not. Given the track record there, I'm not inclined to support this. I would like to see the wording if Mr Waters believes that the problem is so great in that amalgamated municipality that something has to be done through this legislation.

Mr Owens: Just very quickly following on Jim's comments, I absolutely agree that the language with respect to unfairness is not on. In terms of any kind of negotiations or grievance arbitration processes that I've been involved in, "unfairness" or "fairness" was not terminology that was used. That's probably an issue for discussion in another place.

Jim suggests that it's arbitrary. I would suggest it's completely subjective in terms of how people view what's fair and what's not fair, and to enshrine language like that in legislation, I think, could be leading us down the slippery slope to places that we don't want to be, nor does the other township.

Mr Waters: I would just ask, could we have legal counsel comment on this motion?

The Chair: Sorry. You meant the ministry?

Mr Waters: Or the ministry, yes. Sorry.

Mrs Perron: I guess the one point I'd like to make in striking off is that it is a regulation-making power, so even though we haven't mentioned a specific township, a power may in fact not be used, and if we do specify a situation, we would not have the authority later on to correct a similar situation in other municipalities.

Thirdly, I guess the latter portion of subsection 53(12) is in fact putting a limit on our minister's discretion, because the alternative to the drafting of this provision would be simply to end the provision at the third-last line "thereof." So the latter part is indicating what principle will guide the minister in the exercise of his or her authority under this section.

Mr Jim Wilson: That's very interesting, that the only other option being presented is to end it at "thereof." I still, of course, have a problem with the definition of "unfairness." For example, given the sweeping regulatory power here, what's to prevent the minister from, on a good or bad day, deciding that one clerk was making too much money and that the other three clerks weren't making as much, and rather than give them a raise, as occurred in the south Simcoe amalgamation, he just brings everybody down to the lowest common denominator in terms of salary? Maybe that's the right thing to do on behalf of taxpayers, but it's very unfair to employees. So unless this is worded more specifically to the problem that I think Mr Waters is trying to address, I'm not inclined to support it.

The Chair: I have Mr Owens and Mr Conway.

Mr Owens: I was just conferring with my colleague and suggesting that we in fact stand this down, that we get perhaps some labour law advice in terms of the kinds of language that would be appropriate.

I think, again, if we're aiming at one particular situation, I'd have to agree with Mr McLean again and Mr Wilson that we have no idea what kinds of discussions went on around this deal. All I know is I have a bona fide contract in front me and it's not for me to presume that anything untoward went on during those discussions.

But I think that we've heard this language before in terms of addressing the flea with a hammer, that this may be in fact what we're doing and that, again, we may be headed for the slippery slope, where we just don't want to be. I've been there, two months ago.

Mr Conway: I've listened very carefully to what he said and it may very well be that we can't do what we want to do here legislatively. I don't take much comfort -- I appreciate the advice that we seek good legal advice, but I think Mr Owens and others have made some very good points. I'm not worried about just the difficulties here. I'm not worried about Mr Wilson's concern about what a minister might do, because every major statute and most minor ones empower ministers, and civil servants in their name, to do quite a remarkable number of things. The reason they're not done most of the time is there are very real small-p political constraints around that. So I think maybe I'm coming to the conclusion that there's nothing we really can do here legislatively.

But I want to say this: I think we have to draw back. This proposal touches on, for me, a central issue in this whole debate. I mean, this government, but previous governments of all stripes, have advanced these kinds of restructurings and reforms because they're going to make things more efficient, more cost-effective. I'm telling you I am absolutely terrified that for a lot of people in Simcoe county in the coming years, there are going to be very substantial costs: some very real cost increases and some apparent and real losses in local democracy and local accountability.

My worry -- and I know there are some people here from perhaps even the affected township. One of the things I want to say to them, and through them to maybe people elsewhere in the ministry and in the local municipal governments, is that I just hope everybody is going to be very sensitive to the fact that one of the real tests against which this reform is going to be measured is, how efficient and how effective will it be? If in the coming weeks and months, people in Orillia township and Matchedash and Tiny and Tay and every place else start to hear and read about Rod Lewis-like deals, I'm going to tell you, it is going to reflect really poorly on every one of us who had anything to do with this. My friend from Brant and I were just chatting about some of the sweetheart deals that have been made by harbour commissions and hospital boards and municipalities and provincial legislatures and a lot of others, and the taxpayers have had it to the teeth with this kind of crap.


This amendment I think rightly focuses attention on a concern that at least one group of people in Matchedash have raised about a liability that they may now be expected to assume in part and with which they had little or nothing to do in terms of its creation.

So I guess as I back away from this, I do so reluctantly but in the hope that there is going to be some very tough, good political sense exercised by a lot of people who understand good labour law and proper employee relations but on the other hand don't leave the taxpayers in Simcoe, generally or locally, with a bag of expenses that are completely unjustified and unjustifiable.

The Chair: Okay. Mr Wilson with just a final comment. I think we either need to deal with this or stand it down.

Mr Jim Wilson: That was a wonderful dissertation by Mr Conway. I gather from it he wants it both ways. I really didn't quite figure out what side of the fence he's on with this one.

Secondly, I'd ask him where the heck he was when his government forced amalgamation on the south end of Simcoe county. It's all fine and dandy to tell us now that there is cost involved in this, and you're right, Mr Conway, but I wonder why that wasn't a concern during the five years you were in government.

Mr Conway: Listen, I accept that criticism, and I offered my observations, I thought, on a non-partisan -- of course we've all done it. I was in government when we had to explain the Rod Lewis fiasco. I'm just saying that in 1993 there's a different imperative. One of the things I've heard over the course of three really interesting and informative days of testimony is that there are a lot of people in Simcoe county who are concerned that this reform is going to fail one of the salient tests, which is that it will be more efficient, more effective and less costly. All Mr Waters has done is bring to our attention a concern that's been identified by some people that because of or in the name of restructuring, arrangements are being made that may not look very good against that principal criterion.

Mr Waters: I would request it be stood down.

Mr Hayes: Yes, Mr Chair, I was going to suggest that we do stand this down, give each caucus a chance to sit down and discuss it between themselves, and hopefully we can come back here with a better understanding and be able to carry on with this.

The Chair: Okay, we will stand this down. So section 53, then, is stood down. We'll return to it.

Just before getting to section 54, may I ask committee members for some direction. Would the committee like to work on? If so, could I suggest that there is a cafeteria here. Either we could break for a short period and people could go and grab a sandwich or we would continue and people would sort of run down and get something. I'm in the committee's hands. We can break for 15 minutes or something at noon or at 1. Do you want to go through till 1 and then break?


The Chair: Sorry, just one at a time. Mr Wilson.

Mr Jim Wilson: Let's just finish the northern boundary amendments before we break at all.

The Chair: Okay. All right, fine, we will do that. Then government amendment, section 54. Sorry, just a minute. This is going to be a new section, so we need to move section 54 first. Okay?

Shall section 54 carry? Carried.

New section 54.1: Parliamentary assistant.

Mr Hayes: I move that the bill be amended by adding the following section:

"54.1(1) The Ontario Provincial Police shall continue to provide police services in an area in which the Ontario Provincial Police was providing police services at no charge to a former municipality on December 31, 1993, and which area is now located in the local municipality of the town of Collingwood, the town of Midland or the town of Penetanguishene until the Ontario Civilian Commission on Police Services is satisfied that the local municipality has discharged its responsibility under section 5 of the Police Services Act in respect of the area or any part of it.

"(2) The cost, certified by the commissioner of the Ontario Provincial Police, of providing police services under subsection (1) shall be charged to the local municipality in which the area is now located and may be deducted from any grant payable out of provincial funds to the local municipality or may be recovered with costs in any court of competent jurisdiction as a debt due to the crown."

The Chair: Comment?

Mr Hayes: Currently, the towns of Collingwood, Midland and Penetanguishene have local police forces to provide policing to their residents. Under the provisions of the Police Services Act, these towns will be required to police the areas to be added, then, under the restructuring as of the implementation date of January 1, 1994.

This amendment addresses the concerns presented by the Ontario Provincial Police and the towns of Midland and Penetanguishene regarding the transition to the provision of local policing in these new areas of the towns. The amendments provide for the continuation of OPP policing services in the areas to be added to the towns until the Ontario Civilian Commission on Police Services is satisfied that the town can adequately police these areas. The towns would be billed for the cost of continuing the provision of this service by the Ontario Provincial Police.

The Chair: I have Mr McLean and Mr Wilson.

Mr McLean: I just want to say that if this last paragraph was deleted, I would find the rest of it acceptable. I don't understand, during this transition period, why you wouldn't allow them to continue until there are elections in the fall of 1991, at least for that year --

Interjection: 1994.

Mr McLean: Fall of 1994. If you would delete that last paragraph or reword it, I would be more happy. This is another case of downloading on to the municipalities.

The Chair: Mr Wilson, are you on the same point?

Mr Jim Wilson: Yes.

The Chair: Go ahead.

Mr Jim Wilson: I do agree that it's a form of a downloading. We heard, for example, from the town of Midland about the tremendous costs -- sorry, was it Midland? Yes, it was Midland, with Chief Hembruff. At least $275,000 plus a couple of new communications towers on top of that is my recollection that the ratepayers of Midland are now going to have to pick up, apparently the population of the new expanded area. There's going to be a net cost there. They're not going to get enough out of the ratepayers in the expanded area, apparently, to cover the cost of some other new services they require. I think fire has to be expanded, and the new costs incurred with expanding the Midland police force.

For the world of me, I don't understand why in Bill 51 there aren't provisions for the province of Ontario to compensate municipalities that have to expand their police forces, for the costs incurred in doing that. Certainly in Bill 177 under the previous government there was a formula for compensating. I know the government will argue that that perhaps is a different case because the choice there was to either expand the Alliston force to the three other amalgamated areas or to contract the OPP, which is what they've done. There's a problem there, if I may say, in that I think in two years the grants to policing to New Tecumseth run out and the taxpayers will have to foot 100% of the bill, and up goes the property tax, a very clear case of downloading.

So my question with respect to this would be, what is the cost to these expanding municipalities like Midland, Penetanguishene and Collingwood in terms of policing -- I assume the government has costed that out -- and why has the government decided through the back door to simply download that cost on to local ratepayers and not compensate those municipalities that have to expand their police forces under this act?

The Chair: Mr Eddy? I just think we'll get all the questions on the table.

Mr Eddy: I disagree as well with subsection (2) on the costs. The province is going to save money on police servicing when the municipality takes over full police services. Surely there can be some negotiation requirement of increases in the police force to police, at least partially. Whatever is done is going to save the OPP costs, and eventually they're going to save the complete costs of policing that area. Surely during the transition period, a transition period with specific dates, something could be worked out that costs are not charged for it, I'd say.


The Chair: The parliamentary assistant.

Mr Hayes: If I may, Mr Chair, I'd like to ask Rick Temporale to address this issue. He can clarify some points.

The Chair: If you would just be good enough to identify yourself for Hansard and then please go ahead.

Mr Rick Temporale: Rick Temporale, Ministry of Municipal Affairs. First of all, this is a standard provision that's provided in restructuring legislation. If you remember, in the town of Midland the police board passed a resolution that they were prepared to police this area. I think they're prepared to gear up for that for the beginning of the year.

This section talks about the cost of OPP police. So what you intend to do in that case, Midland decides to police the area itself. There is transitional assistance available, which we've discussed before. It doesn't take into consideration the cost of policing these new areas.

We've talked before about the fact that towns do have to pay for police under Solicitor General legislation. As to the exact costs of this, we don't know what the costs will be to police it, Midland doesn't know, Penetang doesn't know. It depends on the number of police officers they're going to put in there, and that's a discussion they're having at the board level now.

Mr Jim Wilson: I thought I'd brought with me a copy of a recent press release from Municipal Affairs to the town of New Tecumseth but I didn't, so I can't provide it to members, but it's the most recent police grant to the town of New Tecumseth. My recollection is that the total amount of money that's been given to the south end restructuring to date is $4.2 million. A substantial portion of that is police. The press release that I thought I had a copy of indicated that the most recent amount given was $534,991 strictly to the town of New Tecumseth. To the total south end restructuring, on April 14 the government announced a little over $800,000.

I guess the point is there's tremendous costs. We're not seeing as large a geographical area being shifted from areas where currently the province pays for policing, putting the cost directly on to the property tax base. But we are seeing -- Midland again comes to mind -- a significant amount of dollar costs being incurred.

I will tell members that this is something that maybe the ministry -- and I take it the ministry has discussed with municipal officials, but municipal officials have not told the public out there what some of these costs are.

I congratulate Chief Hembruff for coming forward, and the chairman of the Midland police services, for being honest in their estimate of the costs. Members will recall that when pressed on where this money's going to come from, he deferred to the mayor, who actually never did answer the question when the mayor of Midland was before the committee.

This is the type of downloading and the type of negative politics that will be the fallout from restructuring. When the people of Midland and Penetanguishene and Collingwood realize that there's tremendous costs involved that haven't been discussed with them ahead of time and they see their property taxes go up with no compensation from the province, I tell you, it won't be county council dealing with this issue, it'll be the local MPPs and in fact the government of the day having to deal with that issue.

Again, my question is, there is a provision in the act for grants to municipalities. We've been told to date that policing had not been considered in that grant formula. The amount's been set at $2.6 million in transitional funding money. So I want to know what the cost of police is in addition to the $2.6 million and whether there's a commitment that we don't know about from the government to these municipalities to cover the costs of expanding policing.

Mr McLean: I think subsection (1) very well spells it out that the provincial police will supply the services until the civil commission on police services is satisfied that the local municipality can discharge its duties. I think that's very clear, and I think this is authorizing them to continue that until the local police can do it. So I would make an amendment and delete subsection (2).

The Chair: Do you wish to move an amendment?

Mr McLean: An amendment that subsection (2) of 54.1 be deleted.

The Chair: Of the amendment. Just while you're working out the wording of that, the parliamentary assistant wanted to --

Mr Hayes: Really, all it is doing, as a matter of fact, is allowing the OPP to be able to charge the municipality. It doesn't say anything about how much the province is giving or how much it's going to cost. You can't do that until you know exactly how many police officers you need in some of these areas. That's really what it is.

Mr McLean: What I'm saying is, they would continue the practice they are doing right now until the civil commission, the police services board, decides to take it over. Then they would have to assume the cost. But as it is now, that would continue until that stopped, and I presume until the fall of 1994.

Mr Jim Wilson: In response to Mr Hayes's comment, he still didn't answer the question. We know what the amendment's doing, but the question is, yes, you can, through legislation -- Bill 177, the amalgamation of south Simcoe, is a good example -- use a percentage formula, the actual dollar amounts to be worked out later, on the province's commitment to phasing in over five years the downloading. I know the ministry officials have a copy of Bill 177, but my recollection is something like the province paying for the increased costs of policing 100% in the first year and a sliding scale down after the fifth year to zero.

We are seeing a similar deal being worked out with respect to assessment on the malls from Tiny to Midland. There are a bunch of amendments here dealing with a percentage formula. So I don't see why the government can't work out a similar arrangement with respect to policing costs.

If you want to hold up Simcoe county to other counties -- and maybe Mr Eddy will have a comment on this -- as a model of restructuring, you have to be prepared to pay, at least on a phase-out basis, the costs of restructuring. Your $2.6-million figure doesn't cut it, given that you've left out significant new costs like policing and firefighting and a few other services.

If the intent of this legislation from the government's point of view is to simply download costs, which I have argued all the way along it is, then tell us that. But that's not the selling job you've put out to the public all the way along to this point.

Mr Hayes: We'll tell you that you are wrong on that, Mr Wilson.

Mr Jim Wilson: Well, point out exactly where I'm wrong then, Mr Hayes.

The Chair: Just before we do that, Mr Eddy, did you have a comment, and then, parliamentary assistant, respond. I think we're getting close to where the issue is clear and we should deal with the amendment that Mr McLean --

Mr Eddy: Yes, just a brief comment. The police services board of each of the municipalities will be required to have a plan for policing the new areas, and part of that plan, it seems to me, could be the time frame for it. It could and should be the time frame, and along with that, it could be the cost of transitional financing.

I don't think it's awkward or difficult to do, and it's recognizing the OPP is now policing it free of charge and they've got a plus situation in that their costs will be reduced from day one somewhat and eventually, whatever the time frame is, will be free of all costs there, although there will be the per capita grant, of course, to the municipality.

The Chair: Parliamentary assistant, to Mr Griggs.

Mr Hayes: Yes.


Mr Griggs: Again, if I can clarify the provisions of Bill 177, the south Simcoe legislation, regarding the police services, there is no mention of phasing in the costs for providing police services in that area. In fact, section 31 of Bill 177 is almost identical to the amendment we're considering today. If I can just read subsection 31(2):

"The cost of the Ontario Provincial Police Force providing police services under subsection (1)" -- which is in the areas to be added to the town municipalities -- "shall be charged to the town municipality and may be deducted from any grant payable out of provincial funds to the town municipality or may be recovered with costs by action in any court of competent jurisdiction as a debt due to the crown."

Mr Hayes: It's the same.

Mr Jim Wilson: I know it was set out, I believe in the regulations, which under this act are being maintained. I don't know whether that's 231/91, but I'll read to you a press release from the Ministry of Municipal Affairs dated April 14, 1993, to his worship Mayor George McCague, town of New Tecumseth.

"Dear Mayor McCague:

"I am pleased to enclose a cheque in the amount of $534,991. This is to assist in alleviating the financial impact of local policing costs in those areas of your town that were policed by the Ontario Provincial Police on December 31, 1990.

"The 1993 entitlement represents the third year of a five-year commitment the province has made to phase in the impact of local policing costs. As such, this year's payment represents funding at a 60% level.


"Ed Philip


There was a five-year formula. I believe it was contained in the regulations, and if that's what you intend to do here, then fine, just tell us, but I haven't heard that intention from the government.

Mr Hayes: I cannot commit the ministry or the minister or the treasury to any type of spending at this present time, but this amendment here does not stop the minister or the ministry from taking certain steps or spending money. Neither did Bill 177. This is really not much different than Bill 177. I cannot make any commitments of that nature.

Mr Jim Wilson: Just one final word on it, because I'm clearly not getting anywhere. When 177 was going through, prior to its passage, I remember very well because I was an assistant at Queen's Park, there was a very clear formula agreed to on the downloading of policing costs, and that to a great extent did help alleviate the concerns of those municipalities that were being amalgamated.

Mr Griggs: Again, I'd like to just point out that to imply that the costs for expanding police forces in south Simcoe are similar to the costs that will be incurred by the towns under the Simcoe restructuring we're considering today is a little misleading. When the three town municipalities were created under Bill 177, it involved the amalgamation of urban municipalities and large rural townships and under the Police Services Act those municipalities were required to police the entire area of those fairly large combined rural-urban municipalities. In the case of the Simcoe restructuring, we have a number of town municipalities that are expanding their boundaries through annexations from neighbouring municipalities. There isn't an amalgamation involving a large township that will be required to be policed.

In addition, if these municipalities were proceeding with annexations under the Municipal Boundary Negotiations Act, they would be required to police those areas with no consideration of assistance from the province for those additional costs.

The Chair: Mr Wilson and Mr Eddy, and then I think we need to deal with the amendments.

Mr Jim Wilson: I was in no way misleading the committee. I made clear in my remarks that there is a difference. I understand that. But in spite of the legalese of actually the way the acts are currently worded and who's responsible for what, the point I'm making is that the principle is the same and it was recognized by the previous government in forcing an amalgamation on south Simcoe that there would be tremendous costs with respect to policing. We have evidence before this committee that there are going to be some tremendous costs with respect to policing to urban municipalities that are expanding to take in predominantly rural fringe areas. My plea to the government is that it look at compensating in a similar fashion to the deal that was worked out with south Simcoe.

Mr Eddy: Well, I did have a question and disagreement with one point in Mr Griggs's speech, but I'll follow that up later. I think the answer at this time would probably be to look at the amendment to 54.1(2) and change the word "shall" to "may." If we did that, it's permissive and then that would mean that there could be further negotiations and the possibility of something similar, if we just change that verb, rather than making it mandatory at this stage.

The Chair: At the moment, we have an amendment to the amendment from Mr McLean which would simply indicate that subsection 54.1(2) would be deleted. If you wish to make a further amendment to the amendment --

Mr Jim Wilson: Can I ask a question?

Mr Hayes: Can I make one point?

The Chair: Okay, one point and then a question, and then I do think we need to move on here.

Mr Hayes: These amendments were actually discussed by the Solicitor General's office and the OPP, and there was an agreement there that this would be the proper wording for this amendment, just to let the members know.

Mr McLean: Well, that doesn't mean our approval.

Mr Hayes: No, it doesn't mean your approval, but I'm just explaining to you, as much as information as I can give you, I will give you.

Mr Jim Wilson: Mr Chair, I have a question --

The Chair: A question, and I should just indicate, the order would be, we would have to deal with Mr McLean's amendment first before any other one, because of course it would, if passed, delete the second part.

Mr Jim Wilson: I have a question: I'm inclined to support the deletion of subsection (2) as per Mr McLean's amendment to the amendment, except that it leaves subsection 54.1(1) with no mention of compensation from the province at all. If we were to delete subsection (2), it's a question for legal counsel: What happens to the costs?

Mr McLean: The provincial police are going to police it, and they're going to pay the costs.

Mr Jim Wilson: Yes, I understand that. Mr McLean has said the provincial police are going to police it until such time as the new municipality takes it over.

The point that Midland made was that whenever they take this over, there are tremendous new costs to the ratepayers of the expanded Midland or Penetanguishene or Collingwood. It's at that point -- I don't care when it happens. I appreciate the amendment's trying to make sure that there's a clarification of who legally polices the area until there is a takeover. The point is, when there is the takeover at whatever point, the province should be compensating to help offset the costs incurred by the new expanding municipalities. So the question is, what happens to costs if you simply delete subsection (2)?

The Chair: Okay, legal counsel is conferring.

Mr Conway: Jim, using the Midland example, it's not as though Midland is taking over a desert. As I remember the portion of Tiny that they're --

Mr Jim Wilson: That was covered. They said they would not get enough new taxes out of the expanded area to cover all the costs and that in fact policing was not part of the deal with the province and that they were going to do it and charge it to the taxpayers.

Mr Conway: I'm really maybe obtuse on this, but I think Ron made a point that surely each of the police services board is going to have some kind of a scheme for the town. I'm just thinking of Midland. It's not as though you were adding to the town of Midland the town of Wasaga Beach and the town of Collingwood. Aren't they fairly modest expansions to the boundaries of --

Mr Jim Wilson: They're pretty modest, except that certainly prior to the chief of police and the chairman of the police services board in Midland making their presentation, I had no idea of the tremendous costs. When you hear some of the figures they were talking about, that's a lot of money to a place like Midland.

The Chair: Can I ask legal counsel just to respond to the question around costs? That was the question, I believe, of what would happen --

Mrs Perron: I'm just waiting for the system to turn on.

The Chair: I think you have to push the button.

Mrs Perron: It's okay. I believe the question was, what would be the effect of the deletion of subsection 54.1(2)? My response to that is that the operative portion of subsection 54.1(1) would be that the "Ontario Provincial Police shall continue," so there would be a clear obligation on the OPP to continue services in those annexed areas. But I direct you to the latter portion of that provision which says, "until the Ontario Civilian Commission on Police Services is satisfied that the local municipality has discharged...." So the discretion would remain theirs to determine how long to stay in that particular municipality. But there would be a clear duty on the OPP.

Mr Jim Wilson: But the question was with respect to costs, and then there would be just no mention of costs.

Mrs Perron: That's right.

Mr Jim Wilson: Mr Chairman, one last comment. Members have to keep in mind that police services boards set their levy, and I stand to be corrected on this, but we've had complaints from municipal councillors who say, "Look, we don't have -- other than maybe the mayor sits on the police services board or something -- any particular say in the levy that's set." That's why I think we had the chairman of the police commission in Midland saying: "These are the costs. We're going to have to incur them and they're going to have to be put on the property tax base."

I know what's going to happen there. The rest of the council is going to say: "We can't afford this. We don't want to raise taxes or whatever. Let's go to the province for some help."


The Chair: We have an amendment from Mr McLean, and I think we've had a pretty full discussion. I think we ought to deal with the amendment to the government amendment. Mr McLean, do you want to just read your amendment?

Mr McLean: My amendment to section 54 is to delete subsection (2).

The Chair: This is section 54.1?

Mr McLean: Section 54.1, subsection (2).

The Chair: Of the government amendment.

Mr McLean: Of the government amendment. I'd like a recorded vote.

The Chair: Okay. Everyone has heard Mr McLean's motion, that subsection 54.1(2) be deleted. A recorded vote has been called for. All those in favour of Mr McLean's amendment to the government amendment?


Conway, Eddy, McLean, Wilson (Simcoe West).

The Chair: All those opposed?


Hayes, O'Connor, Owens, Rizzo, Waters, Wessenger.

The Chair: The amendment to the amendment is defeated.

Mr Eddy: Mr Chair, I move that the word "shall" in the third line of section 54.1 be changed from "shall" to "may."

The Chair: Is that subsection 54.1(2)?

Mr Eddy: Yes.

Ms Mifsud: There's just one slight problem with that motion. It begs the question of who makes the determination of when "may" becomes "shall." Would it be the minister? Would it be the police commission?

Mr Eddy: This act is under the Ministry of Municipal Affairs. Who makes the decision would be up to the minister to determine. The amendment is here because it came from the Solicitor General. It's the Solicitor General's amendment, so he would make that.

Mr McLean: It would be the Minister of Municipal Affairs, because on the next line it says "may be deducted from any grants payable." So I think the wording is right.

Mr Jim Wilson: You need something added though.

Ms Mifsud: Still, there has to be someone who kicks in who makes the determination, because we've mentioned the police commission, we have mentioned the minister, we have mentioned the local municipality. Theoretically, either of those could do it when we don't express who has the power to enact this provision basically when you change it to "may." When it's "shall," the legislation does it; this is the way it's going to work. When it's "may," there has to be someone who makes it legally effective.

Mr Eddy: I would say then "as determined by the Minister of Municipal Affairs," because the amendment has been submitted to the Ministry of Municipal Affairs by the Solicitor General. The minister also represents, in some ways, the municipalities and is in charge of this act.

The Chair: Would that read then, "may be charged to the local municipality as determined by the minister"?

Ms Mifsud: Fine.

Mr Eddy: It leaves it open for negotiation.

The Chair: Shall I put the amendment to the government amendment? Shall Mr Eddy's amendment carry? All those in favour? All those opposed?

Mr McLean: The same old thing.

The Chair: The amendment to the amendment is defeated.

Shall I put the government amendment?

Mr McLean: A recorded vote on the government amendment.

The Chair: Okay, a recorded vote on the government amendment. Shall the government amendment to section 54.1 carry? All those in favour?


Hayes, O'Connor, Owens, Rizzo, Waters, Wessenger.

The Chair: All opposed?


Conway, Eddy, McLean, Wilson (Simcoe West).

The Chair: Section 54.1, as amended, is therefore carried.

Mr Jim Wilson: Just with respect to that policing issue, before we leave it, did we ever get a clarification on the cost associated with the Penetang mental health centre and particularly Oak Ridge? It has been discussed back and forth the last couple of days and, given that I think if there's a clear case of government assistance there -- and we were told that there are three OPP officers dedicated on call to that centre. That's quite an onerous obligation for Penetanguishene now.

Mr Hayes: If I may, I'll ask Rick Temporale to address that.

Mr Temporale: This morning I talked to staff at the Solicitor General about this particular concern. They suggested there is a section in the act, the Police Services Act, subsection 13(1), and if you like I brought copies of that for everyone and I'll pass them around.

This section allows the Solicitor General to declare a special area:

"If, because of the establishment of a business or for any other reason, special circumstances or abnormal conditions in an area make it inequitable, in the Solicitor General's opinion, to impose the responsibility for police services on a municipality or on the province, the Lieutenant Governor in Council may designate the area as a special area."

It goes on to say that they can enter into an agreement with the OPP: "The person who operates the business or owns the special area shall enter into an agreement with the Solicitor General" for payment. In this case, the owner is the province and the operator is the Ministry of Health, I believe.

I don't think there's anything that we can do in this act to override that act, but if you have any suggestions on how you might want to handle this -- there's your answer anyway as to what's available. The exact costs aren't known at this time.

Mr Jim Wilson: Given the cutbacks at the Ministry of Health these days, you may be attempting to get blood from a stone. The question would be, had there been any discussions with the Ministry of Health or other ministries of the government that may be involved in helping to offset these costs to the new municipality?

Mr Griggs: Again, the first time we heard of this issue was at the hearings from Penetanguishene. There had been discussions regarding the transition of policing with the towns and between the towns and the Solicitor General, but this was the first time this had come to the attention of the province. So, no, there haven't been those discussions at this time.

Mr Wessenger: I would just like to make a suggestion with respect to this matter. I'm suggesting the committee could consider, after we complete clause-by-clause of this bill, moving a resolution requesting the Solicitor General to designate this as special circumstances.

Mr Conway: I appreciate the staff help on this because I was certainly concerned by what I heard from the folks up at Penetanguishene. It seems to me, as a practical matter, this will cover it. I would simply hope that the current and future solicitors general and governments will be sensitive, as I think they will be, to the reality that if there is a difficulty there, I can't imagine that it would not become quickly the responsibility of the OPP. This is useful because there's a location someplace in the law which says that it's possible.

The Chair: Okay. We're at 12:20. What I would like to suggest is the next amendment is a new part --

Mr Wessenger: Have we passed 55 to 60?

The Chair: We have not. Can I just finish what I was going to say and then -- so what I'm asking people then is I would like to move sections 55 through 63. I just want to give everybody a moment to note that. At that point, I would suggest, is probably the appropriate place for us to break. Okay, so what I'm asking is, are there any comments on sections 55 through 63?

Interjection: One moment --

The Chair: Yes.

Interjection: I got 63.1 --

Interjection: This is the new part.

Interjection: Oh, it's a new one. Okay, yes, you're right.

The Chair: It's a new part, so 63 is in fact covered.

Mr McLean: There's been a lot of discussion with regard to the public utilities commission. Was there anyone who had amendments to that -- I thought somebody did -- to the public utilities?

Mr Jim Wilson: Yes --

Mr Hayes: But you are waiting for your letter, right, or for --

Mr Jim Wilson: Yes, it's been deferred, so I don't think you can deal with it.

The Chair: Which section is that, please?

Mr McLean: 57.

Interjection: 57, 58.

Mr Griggs: If I could -- these sections relate to the transitional PUCs, so in the case of, I believe it was, the municipalities of Nottawasaga, Sunnidale, Stayner and Creemore, that was your concern. This would provide for the public utility commission in the interim until the new commission is elected. I understand that your amendment dealt with the election of the new commission and therefore should not affect these sections.

Mr Jim Wilson: My amendment deals with the composition of the new commission and, you're correct, it doesn't deal with the interim commission. As long as there be nothing consequential to my 8.1 amendment with respect to 58, because it strictly deals with transitional.

Mr Griggs: I believe that's the case, looking at it, and I'm getting a nod from our solicitor as well, that that is the case, it would not affect these sections.

The Chair: Be it noted that the solicitor has nodded.

Mr McLean: We had a previous amendment with regard to Ramara but that, I believe, had to do with a date. Was that not correct? That's way back somewhere, where there was putting two people on the commission.

Mr Griggs: Yes, the amendment in that case was addressing an issue where -- that the way the bill was currently worded prior to the amendment being passed, it referred to a bylaw passed by the township of Ramara during 1993, and it was brought to our attention that that township will not exist until 1994, so it does not affect these sections.

The Chair: Can I then put the question? Shall sections 55, 56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62 and 63 carry? In favour? Opposed? Carried.

Now, if I could then suggest that we break -- it is almost 25 after. Do you wish to break to quarter to 1 or 1. One o'clock? Okay. The committee will stand adjourned until 1 o'clock.

The committee recessed from 1223 to 1313.

The Vice-Chair (Mr Ron Eddy): Members, ladies and gentlemen, the social development committee has reconvened on Bill 51, An Act respecting the Restructuring of the County of Middle --


The Vice-Chair: County of Simcoe. That other one will come later, no doubt.

Dealing with the bill clause by clause, we had completed, I believe, section 63. We welcome Tim Murphy, MPP, in place of Charles Beer. Thank you for subbing.

Mr Conway: Tim Murphy actually grew up in Simcoe county.

The Vice-Chair: Yes. We will be enlightened, no doubt, at some time or other during the day regarding that.

The next item is a new section, as I understand it: part VII.1, deferred boundary adjustment.

Interjection: Are we on 63?

The Vice-Chair: Part VII.1. Are you going to introduce that, Mr Parliamentary Assistant?

Mr Hayes: Do you want me to read it, Mr Chair?

The Vice-Chair: Yes. Would you read that into the record, please.

Mr Hayes: This whole thing?

The Vice-Chair: It's required.

Mr Hayes: So I've got to read right up to 63.8, right? Okay.

I move that the bill be amended by adding the following part:


"63.1 In this part, the `annexed area' means the portion of the township of Tiny described in schedule 15.

"63.2(1) On January 1, 2004, the annexed area is annexed to the town of Midland and forms part of ward 1 of the town of Midland.

"(2) Subsections 2(7), (8) and (9) apply with necessary modifications to schedule 15.

"63.3 All real property including highways, streets, fixtures, waterlines, sewers, easements and restrictive covenants running with the land of the township of Tiny located in the annexed area vests in the town of Midland on January 1, 2004.

"63.4(1) On January 1, 2004, the bylaws and resolutions of the town of Midland extend to the annexed area and the bylaws and resolutions of the township of Tiny cease to apply to such area, except,

"(a) bylaws of the township of Tiny, which remain in force in the annexed area until repealed by the council of the town of Midland, that were,

"(i) passed under section 34 of the Planning Act or a predecessor of that section,

"(ii) passed under the Highway Traffic Act or the Municipal Act regulating the use of highways by vehicles and pedestrians and regulating the encroachment or projection of buildings or any portion thereof upon or over highways,

"(iii) passed under section 45, 58 or 61 of the Drainage Act;

"(b) a bylaw of the township of Tiny passed under section 3 of the Development Charges Act which remains in force in the annexed area, despite sections 6 and 49 of that act, until the earlier of,

"(i) the date it is repealed by the council of the town of Midland, and

"(ii) the date it expires under subsection 6(1) or (2) of the Development Charges Act or December 31, 2006, whichever occurs later;

"(c) a bylaw or resolution conferring rights, privileges, franchises, immunities or exemptions that could not have been lawfully repealed by the council of the township of Tiny.

"(2) If the township of Tiny has commenced procedures to enact a bylaw under any act or to adopt an official plan or amendment to it under the Planning Act and that bylaw, official plan or amendment applies to the annexed area and is not in force on January 1, 2004, the council of the town of Midland may continue the procedures to enact the bylaw or adopt the official plan or amendment to the extent that it applies to the annexed area.

"63.5(1) All taxes, charges or rates levied in the annexed area under any general or special act that are due and unpaid on December 31, 2003, shall, on January 1, 2004, be due and payable to the town of Midland and may be collected by the town of Midland.

"(2) The clerk of the township of Tiny shall, before March 31, 2004, prepare and furnish to the clerk of the town of Midland a special collector's roll showing all arrears of taxes, charges or rates levied in the annexed area up to and including December 31, 2003, and the persons assessed for them.

"(3) On or before April 30, 2004, the town of Midland shall pay the township of Tiny an amount equal to the arrears of taxes, charges and rates contained on the special collector's roll together with any accumulated interest or penalty but excluding any amount struck off the roll as uncollectible under section 441 of the Municipal Act by the treasurer of the town of Midland.

"63.6 Despite subsection 37(2) of the Municipal Act, a person who is a member of the council or the public utility commission of the township of Tiny on December 31, 2003, shall not during the term of office ending November 30 in the year of the next regular municipal election be disqualified from holding the office on the council or commission, respectively, because of any loss of qualification resulting solely from the annexation under this part.

"63.7 For the purposes of the assessment roll to be prepared for the town of Midland in 2003 for taxation in 2004, the annexed area shall be deemed to be part of the town of Midland.

"63.8(1) Despite any act, the Minister of Municipal Affairs may by regulation provide for any of the matters described in paragraphs 3 to 24 of section 14 of the Municipal Boundary Negotiations Act with respect to the annexation under this part.

"(2) In cases of conflict, a regulation made under subsection (1) prevails over this act.

(3) A regulation made under this section may be retroactive to January 1, 2004."


I think it's quite self-explanatory but just to assist the members, the township of Tiny and the town of Midland agreed to defer a portion of the county's recommended boundary adjustment until January 1, 2004. County council has endorsed the proposed deferral by resolution. These additions implement the agreed-upon deferred boundary adjustment with the standard treatment of assessment rolls, real property bylaws, unpaid taxes and council members. If you want, I can give you a brief description of each section.

Section 63.1 identifies the deferred annexed area to be transferred from Tiny to Midland.

Subsection 63.2(1) implements the deferred annexation on January 1, 2004, and adds this area to ward 1 of Midland.

Subsection 63.2(2) relates to the publishing of the schedule describing the deferred annexation in the Ontario Gazette.

Section 63.3 transfers all Tiny-owned real estate in the deferred annexed area to Midland on January 1, 2004.

Subsection 63.4(1) provides for the extension of Midland's bylaws into the deferred annexation area on January 1, 2004. This section also provides for the standard exceptions for zoning bylaws, bylaws regulating the use of highways and encroachment of buildings upon highways, development charges bylaws, and bylaws conferring rights, privileges, franchises, immunities or exemptions that could not have been lawfully repealed by Tiny's council.

Subsection 63.4(2) provides for Midland to continue procedures commenced by Tiny to enact a bylaw or to adopt an official plan or official plan amendment that applies to the deferred annexation area.

Section 63.5 provides for the standard treatment of unpaid taxes in the deferred annexation area.

Section 63.6 provides that no member of Tiny's council or PUC may be disqualified from holding office because of any loss of qualification resulting solely from the deferred annexation area.

Section 63.7 provides for the standard treatment of Midland's assessment roll prepared in 2003 for taxation in 2004.

Section 63.8 provides the minister with the authority to pass regulations providing for any of the matters regarding the content of interim municipal boundary adjustment agreements under the Municipal Boundary Negotiations Act.

The Vice-Chair: That's it? Thank you. Mr McLean.

Mr McLean: I'd like to get clarification on this, if I could, from the parliamentary assistant. You talk about the deferred part. Is this the drawing that was -- lines that were drawn by the county study committee are staying there, and part of that is being deferred until the year 2004? Is that correct?

Mr Hayes: Mr Griggs will answer that.

Mr Griggs: In fact, yes, the town of Midland and the township of Tiny agreed that on January 1, 1994, a portion of the area that county council recommended be added to the town of Midland from the township of Tiny occur, and then on January 1, 2004, that the remainder of that area transfer from Tiny to Midland. That was an agreement between the two councils, with resolutions from both councils supporting.

Mr McLean: The compensation package that I heard about for nine years, was that compensation package based on the small boundary or is it based on the larger boundary?

Mr Hayes: Wait for a clarification now. It's the small one, isn't it?

Mr Griggs: It's based on the first annexation, the January 1, 1994, annexation.

Mr McLean: I thought there were five years at 100% and then it was phased down for the next five years.

Mr Griggs: Yes.

Mr Hayes: Four.

Mr McLean: My understanding was that the 100% was based on the smaller area, that is, the area they're taking in now, and the other percentage was based on the whole area, or is it based on the deferred area?

Mr Hayes: It's based on the smaller area, I believe, isn't it?

Mr Griggs: The whole compensation package is based on the assessment in the annexation occurring January 1, 1994; in other words, the first annexation. There are in essence two annexations here: the first one on January 1, 1994, and the second one on January 1, 2004.

Mr McLean: So the percentage they get in the sixth year will be based on the whole annexation?

Mr Griggs: No, on the first annexation area, the January 1, 1994, annexation area.

Mr McLean: That's what I wanted to get clarified, and you're saying -- after the five years, is it based on the whole area or based on the additional area?

Mr Griggs: Maybe I can refer this question to Rick Temporale. He may be able to clarify it for you.

Mr Temporale: The compensation that will be paid to Tiny township is based on the amount of commercial industrial assessment moving from Tiny to Midland as of January 1, 1994, and on 1993 commercial industrial mill rates. That amount stays fixed for five years and then is phased down by 20% a year until the four-year phase-out is complete. So it's based on the small annexation and mill rates from 1993.

Mr McLean: Then it's clearly after 2004, with the addition, they will not get any funding for that.

Mr Temporale: The two councils agreed that there would be no funding for the property that is transferred on 2004. That was part of the agreement.

Mr McLean: That was what my question was. Thank you.

The Vice-Chair: Any other questions or comments? If not, shall part VII.1 carry? Carried.

I believe there are no amendments on sections 64 through 66. Does anyone have a question about those sections? If not, shall sections 64, 65 and 66 carry? Carried.

On section 67, I believe there's an amendment. Parliamentary assistant, do you have an amendment to section 67 at this time?

Mr Hayes: Yes. I move that subsection 67(1) be amended by adding after "and (9)" in the second line "subsection 11(15)".

The Vice-Chair: Any questions? Shall amendment to subsection 67(1) carry? Carried.

Further amendments?

Mr Hayes: I move that subsection 67(2) be amended by adding after "and (9)" in the second line "subsection 11(15)."

The Vice-Chair: Any questions? Shall subsection 67(2) carry? Carried.

Shall section 67, as amended, carry? Carried.

We now return to section 2 of the bill at this time.

Mr Waters: I thought we agreed to do it at the end, so I would propose that we do the amendment on section 53 at this point.

The Vice-Chair: And there are some other amendments to other sections as well. Agreed? We'll go to section 53 at this time. Is there an amendment?

Mr Waters: I believe it was circulated. I wish to withdraw the first one that I passed out this morning and in its place I wish to move -- everything would stay the same in it except for this one line. Do you want me to read it out?

Interjection: Read the whole thing.


Mr Waters: I move that section 53 of the bill be amended by adding the following sections:

"Contracts of employment etc

"53(12) Despite this or any other act, the minister may, by regulation, amend or repeal all or part of a contract of employment or a collective agreement entered into between one or more employees of a former municipality or a local board thereof or a bargaining agent of the employees of a former municipality or local board thereof and a former municipality or local board thereof, if in the opinion of the minister the contract of employment or collective agreement contains a provision establishing compensation, including severance payments, that is unreasonably high in comparison to compensation given to persons in similar situations."

It goes on to read:


"(13) A regulation under subsection (12) may be retroactive to January 1, 1994."

The Vice-Chair: Any questions or comments?

Mr McLean: Mr Chairman, I think there should be a little discussion on this. What are you pertaining to, comparing $100,000 to $50,000, that if the minister deems it to be inappropriate that there's a higher salary, that should be lowered?

There was provision in the south Simcoe one where they couldn't lower them, they could only bring them up. What you're saying here is that if the minister deems it too high -- is it the minister who is going to make this decision?

Mr Waters: It would end up being the minister, yes.

Mr McLean: It would have to be a pretty severe case before he would become involved, wouldn't it?

Mr Waters: That's right.

Mr Owens: I still have some difficulty with this, with due respect to my colleague. I think, as Sean Conway said earlier this morning, that once the good taxpayers of Orillia township find out the details of this contract there's going to be a holy war in the area.

In terms of using editorial language in legislation to describe "unreasonably high" or, in the case of the last clause that Mr Waters submitted with respect to unfairness, I have a great deal of difficulty with it. In terms of the province trying to settle what I agree is -- I wish they were negotiating for me because it's a very good severance package, but unfortunately I don't have their negotiating skills.

I have some difficulty with this. I think we're setting down a road on which you're going to use a sledgehammer to try and resolve a very troublesome problem, but I'm not quite sure it fits within the context of what this legislation is designed to do. We can all chit-chat about the social contract and what the social contract did to employment contracts, but I'm just not sure how you address an employment contract within a piece of legislation that is designed to look at boundaries and services and tax assessments.

The Vice-Chair: Did you wish to respond, Mr Waters?

Mr Waters: One of the problems that I see, if we don't do something about it, is that even if the good people of the township get up in arms over this, it's still going to cost them 36 months' severance. If you allow this to go through, you have to deal with the package that exists. The only way the township can get out of that package, I see, is by this particular motion. It also offers an opportunity for relief to the new township when it's created.

Mr Hayes: Mr Chair, may I ask Mr Griggs to give a clarification on this?

Mr Griggs: I just wanted to point out that in fact the legislation as it is written, without any amendment, does provide for an overriding of existing contracts in that in the section dealing with the transfer of employees, namely, clause 53(9)(a), it establishes:

"A person who becomes an employee of a local municipality or a local board of a local municipality under this section shall,

"(a) receive a salary or wage at a rate no less than the person was receiving on the 1st day of July, 1993."

In fact, if there is a contract in place that would deal with a salary or wage increase after July 1, 1993, the new municipality would not be required to honour that agreement. There are clauses in the sections in the agreement now that are overriding the existing contract. I point that out so that everybody's aware of that.

Mr Conway: Can maybe my friend Waters take me -- because I'm very sympathetic to this. It's like the boundary question. It's trying to find out, who did it? More importantly, who's responsible? Well, we're responsible. We are sovereign in these matters. The provincial Legislature has the ultimate responsibility. I've got to tell you, if I were a taxpayer, this is where I would come. I'd say: "No, don't send me off to some nice man from Municipal Affairs or some nice consultant. You are the 130 people who we elect to make these decisions finally."

What I want to know though -- I don't have the benefit of this memorandum about "the deal," so can somebody just take a very few moments to remind me again of what it is we know about the case that is concerning I think more than just the member for Muskoka-Georgian Bay? I want to be sure that the remedy concerns itself with the real problem that we may have here.

Mr Waters: First off, when you look at it, restructuring started back in 1989, I guess it is, and this deal was struck in 1991, so the discussions about restructuring the county were well under way. The deal that was entered into, as I understand it, gave a generous notice of termination provision of 36 months. The provision that an employee's duties and responsibilities can only be altered by mutual agreement --

Mr Conway: That is between the employee and the employer, the old municipality of Orillia?

Mr Waters: But they also have rights with the new municipality, so therefore, in terms of the other people coming in from the other part, where's the fairness for their jobs? If the people who have the contracts don't get the job, that's altering their employment. Therefore they can kick in and get their 36 months' severance.

It goes on: "By mutual agreement, the fact that the employee enjoys the right to terminate the contract in the event of an amalgamation of the township with another municipality, in which case the employer must pay a lump sum equal to 36 months' remuneration, and the fact that the contracts purport to bind the successor municipality, which is deemed to include the municipality amalgamated with the township of Orillia...."

Mr Conway: In summary then, we have an arrangement that has apparently been agreed to which would essentially say the following: that if I, as your employee, fail to secure the job I've now got in some reconfigured municipality, we agree to pay me 36 months --

Mr Owens: If there are material changes to the job description.

Mr Conway: Right, but let's say I'm the clerk. Remember what we're talking about: We're amalgamating a bunch of these in a number of places, so if I am the clerk-treasurer in township X -- and I could pick several places because there are going to be a number of places, and we talked about this throughout the hearings, where there are going to be two or three clerks available for presumably one position as clerk-treasurer. I'm trying to imagine what this might be.

So let's say I'm the clerk of township X now. As a result of this bill, I'm going to have to compete for that job with other people who may hold it in contiguous townships. I don't succeed: I lose my old job as clerk-treasurer. I may be offered a position, let's say, as deputy clerk-treasurer, but I could argue under this that that's not a similar status; therefore, under the provision of the agreement, I am entitled to a 36-month severance.

There are a couple of issues here. One of them is that I don't know very much about severance packages, but that's a pretty generous severance package, isn't it?


Mr Waters: Well, it far exceeds anything I've ever seen. In fact, we know that in the paper right now there's a situation in the Toronto harbour that isn't as good as this.

Mr Conway: I'm just wondering in the ministry -- do you know anything about any of this stuff?

Mr Griggs: We became aware of this situation through the township of Matchedash, when it became aware of it as well. Again, we don't know where similar situations exist across the county.

Mr Conway: I think what you could argue there -- I can see the situation where a municipality -- you're going to have to be guided by some kind of reasonable policy around separation or whatever. If you look at the practices elsewhere, if people start to lose their jobs, you've got to protect yourself against the obvious court case. My friend here, Murphy, is a lawyer and he would tell me --

Mr Owens: But the other issue is, why do you want to use the force of the Legislature and a legislative committee to try to disadvantage -- there are what, eight people who are involved? This is a lot of fire power that we're talking about.

Mr Conway: I agree, but what other remedies have we got?

Mr Owens: I'm not suggesting that it's not an unreasonable or just a wonderful package for somebody to have, but I'm saying this is not the remedy, to use this committee and this legislation to go after --

The Vice-Chair: Mr Wilson?

Mr Jim Wilson: Could I defer to Mr McLean?

Mr McLean: He never did have his hand up.

The Vice-Chair: Mr Wilson had his hand up some time ago, I would say; quite some time ago actually.

Mr McLean: I want to have a clarification if I can. The new municipality of Severn, once it takes power as a municipality, do these contracts stay in place, or can they be renegotiated by the new municipality? My understanding is now that there's no deadline when they run out. I thought there was, but I understand there is no deadline. So if there's no deadline, do they go on for ever with the new municipality?

The Vice-Chair: Would the parliamentary assistant wish to respond to that point?

Mr Hayes: Linda Perron of the legal department will address that.

Mrs Perron: To answer your question, Mr McLean, I think you have to refer to section 48 of the act. It provides that all of the assets and liabilities of the former municipality become the assets and liabilities of a local municipality. So a liability would be a set of obligations under an agreement, and it would also include the terms of the agreement. So if you had a 10-year contract, it would have to be respected for that duration of time, unless the beneficiary of those terms agreed to negotiate a different package.

The Vice-Chair: Mr Owens, did you have anything further? I know you have spoken a couple of times. You are caught up? Okay then, Mr Wilson.

Mr Jim Wilson: In light of what I'm hearing now since the break, and in discussions with ministry staff, I'm inclined to support the amended amendment here from Mr Waters. It strikes me in a funny way that whoever negotiated these contracts in Orillia should be asked to be on the MPP pension board.

Mr Conway: These guys are the people who ran the MPPs' pension board for 40 years.

Mr Jim Wilson: We would probably all lose our jobs, and appropriately so, after they came up with such a handsome agreement. So I'm inclined to support it and I'm inclined to ask you to call the question.

The Vice-Chair: I have two speakers, Mr Murphy and Mr O'Connor.

Mr Tim Murphy (St George-St David): It's more a point of clarification, if I may. I understand they've negotiated the terms of an agreement where, if there's a material alteration to the contract, the severance of 36 months kicks in. To follow up on my friend Mr Conway's comments, if they're offered deputy clerk, that could be treated as a material alteration, because it's a demotion in essence. That's the reason why I thought, if I'm interpreting that correctly, they could in theory accept the position of deputy clerk-treasurer but say none the less it's a material alteration and get the severance. That's my understanding of what the agreement is, by what you've told me. They can keep the job and get 36 months, on the basis of what you told me.

Mr Waters: From what I know, that's what I would interpret, yes.

Mr Conway: This gets even more interesting.

Mr Larry O'Connor (Durham-York): I guess the difficulty I have with this is that we've had a great deal of discussion and appreciate Matchedash in bringing this to the committee. Maybe there is someone here from the ministry who may have been at some of the restructuring meetings. Was this ever brought up by anyone, or was this just found out as we were here more or less going through the county, or was this ever discussed by the restructuring committee?

Mr Griggs: As I indicated earlier, we became aware of this issue when the township of Matchedash did. We weren't aware of the issue before then. It wasn't as if the decisions on the restructuring by county council or subsequent decisions regarding the drafting of the legislation took that into account, because we were not aware of the situation.

Mr Conway: I raised earlier today the question of the Rod Lewis issue, because I can remember people at the time not understanding what they had done, that they'd written the gentleman's contract into legislation for ever. It was the most grotesque embarrassment to all of us here who did it. That's why I'm, as I say, very sympathetic to what Mr Waters is recommending here.

These are good people running these townships and I don't really want to interfere in their affairs, but if these kinds of arrangements have been made, for whatever reason, and if they go beyond the bounds of reason, and the bounds of reason would be determined by the jurisprudence around severances for people, long-term employees, whatever, all the motion does, it seems to me, is provide a permissive power for the minister in exceptional cases to review and repeal unreasonable arrangements.

I favour that, because I expect most people most of the time are going to behave very responsibly, but if we don't do this, I don't know what other remedy we have to protect the taxpayers against that exceptional circumstance, and if we already have an example of something that looks pretty exceptional, in the early days of the new restructured Simcoe, I'm going to tell you, it is going to send a very, very bad signal to a lot of people out there who come to this being very sceptical that this is not going to save any money, and it's going to drive up costs significantly.

Mr Hayes: In answer to the question there earlier, maybe Naren Kotecha could respond to this about the timing and when we were made aware of this situation.

Mr Naren Kotecha: My name is Naren Kotecha from the Ministry of Municipal Affairs. We have been aware of the existence of the contract for the last five to six months. I had a meeting with the council of Orillia township about the contract specifically, and we had suggested to them that they share the contents of the contract with the township of Matchedash and Coldwater and try to arrive at some amicable solution to the problem they are facing that is in front of them. We left the matter with the township of Orillia to pursue further with the township of Coldwater and Matchedash.

The Vice-Chair: Any other questions? If not, shall the amendment to section 53 carry? Carried.

Shall section 53, as amended, carry? Carried.

Now, do we return to section 2, or are there other amendments that were stood down?

Mr Jim Wilson: Section 11.

The Vice-Chair: Section 11, yes. There is, I believe, a PC proposed amendment.

Mr Jim Wilson: I move that section 11 be amended by adding the following subsection:


"(8.1) The commission of the township of Nottawasaga, Stayner, Sunnidale and Creemore shall be composed of,

"(a) the mayor of the township of Nottawasaga, Stayner, Sunnidale and Creemore;

"(b) two members appointed by and from the township; and

"(c) two other members who are qualified electors in the area served by the commission, elected by general vote."


At yesterday's hearings in Collingwood, there was agreement expressed by the representatives from Sunnidale, Nottawasaga and Creemore with respect to amending the composition of the new hydro-electric commission, and the only question that was raised by the government side in subsequent discussions was whether or not the town of Stayner was supportive of this. So I want to just circulate at this time a letter, dated today, from the clerk-administrator, Mr Spellman, from the town of Stayner, indicating Stayner's support.

I would say that the only difference between what was asked for at yesterday's committee hearings, the same being agreed by Stayner today via this letter, is in the wording of the motion. In part (b) it says "two members appointed by and from the township." You'll note the original agreement among the municipalities was to have "the mayor and deputy mayor." I think the suggested wording in my amendment is perhaps better, giving flexibility to the township to appoint two members, and if the new township decides it's "mayor and deputy mayor," that's fine, it's their decision.

Mr Wessenger: I'd just like to express some concern. I have some concern with the principle of having a minority of a board elected and the majority appointed. Perhaps I'll ask if there are precedents for this in any other public utilities commissions, or is this something unique and unusual? I wonder if the parliamentary assistant could tell me if there are other situations similar. If this is unique, I certainly don't like the precedent of elected members being in a minority position because I think it takes away from the whole meaningfulness of the elective process, so I'd like to know if there are other similar situations before I vote on the matter.

Mr Hayes: Mr Chair, I'll refer that to Mr Griggs.

Mr Griggs: In fact, I spoke to some of the elected officials in this municipality regarding this issue, and from discussions with policy advisers within our ministry, it was felt that the existing legislation would provide for this hybrid. It's my understanding that the Public Utilities Act or the Power Corporation Act currently provides for public utilities commissions to either be appointed by council or elected. I'm personally not aware of any hybrid situation where you have some members elected and some who are appointed. However, I can certainly consult with other staff members in my ministry and try to find out whether such an exception exists.

The Vice-Chair: In fact, there is such a precedent. It is in the township of South Dumfries. The hydro commission of the township of South Dumfries is composed of three members appointed by the council and the reeve of the township. That was a bill, the township of South Dumfries bill. It can be checked.

Mr Conway: A veritable font.

The Vice-Chair: Brilliant memory.

Mr Jim Wilson: I think I just made a slight error in my comment previous, and that is, it's obvious the way the motion reads that the mayor will be a member of the hydro-electric commission, as will two members of the council, as will two members who are qualified electors, elected by general vote. I just wanted to clarify that. I think I said "mayor, deputy mayor and two others."

The Vice-Chair: The amendment as you read, though, is correct.

Mr Jim Wilson: Yes. And in addition to today's expressed support from Stayner, members will be aware that contained in appendix B of the presentation that was made by Reeve Carol Currie of the township of Nottawasaga, dated August 25, 1993, appendix B, part (b), contains a motion which is identical to the amendment before us, and the vote at that time was 15 to 3 for the affirmative of this motion, and subsequent to that even the holdouts at Stayner have come on side, so we have agreement.

The Vice-Chair: As we have established that there is such a precedent, are there any questions?

Mr Hayes: Mr Chair, I'd actually like to make an amendment to this, that clause 11(8.1)(c) should read "two other members who are qualified electors in the local municipality, elected by general vote," that it not be just by the specific area that the commission serves, and that would keep it pretty well in line with the intent of section 11, if Mr Wilson has a problem with that.

Mr Jim Wilson: I also have an amendment, members will note, to 11(9) which adds the words "in the area served by the commission." That section in the original drafts of the county's study contained that language and I guess at this time it would be appropriate to explain to this committee and the parliamentary assistant why "in the area served by the commission" was deleted from 11(9), and then perhaps we will make an amendment to my amendment.

The Vice-Chair: Thank you. Parliamentary assistant, is there something further?

Mr Griggs: In fact, there are a number of reasons why you would choose to have the members of a commission, whether it's two members of a five-member commission or four elected members, why you would want them elected from the entire area of the municipality rather than just the area served by the commission, where the commission is not serving the entire area of the municipality, as is the case here.

The reasons are that, first, it would be consistent with the regional acts in that the electors of the whole municipality are able to vote on the members of the commissions. Secondly, although in this case they are hydro-electric commissions, subsection 10(2) does identify them as commissions established under part III of the Public Utilities Act and such commissions can take on other services other than just hydro-electricity, so in fact you may have a commission that's serving one portion of a municipality with hydro-electricity and another portion of the municipality with water service or some other service, in which case, how do you determine what the service area is or which electors vote for members of that commission?

In addition, the bill also provides for a step-by-step future expansion of the service areas of the commissions, so it could be argued that members who do not currently live within the service area may have an interest in endeavours by the commission to expand its service area in the future.

Mr Jim Wilson: I accept that explanation from the ministry and appreciate it. When Reeve Currie appeared before the committee there was no mention of other services that may be taken on by the commission, so I appreciate the explanation. The worry and the intent of asking that the phrase "in the area served by the commission" be put back into the act was that in this particular area two of the current townships, Sunnidale and Nottawasaga, are served by Ontario Hydro and only Creemore and Stayner have PUCs, and they wanted to ensure, in fairness, that the two members of the new hydro commission elected at large would come from either Creemore or Stayner. But given your explanation, I'm prepared with that on the record to make a friendly amendment here, if I could have that wording again.

The Vice-Chair: To be clear on this matter, what are you establishing? Are you establishing public utilities commissions, which can have several powers, or are we establishing hydro-electric power commissions, which is hydro only? I thought it was hydro-electric power commissions, which cannot --


The Vice-Chair: In this case, is it a PUC?

Mr Jim Wilson: Given the explanation just made, it sounds like we're establishing PUCs.

The Vice-Chair: What is the terminology?

Mr Waters: They both say "PUC."

The Vice-Chair: Mr Wilson, you said you're prepared to change --

Mr Jim Wilson: Yes, except I just need the word change.


Mr Hayes: Okay, (c) would read "two other members who are qualified electors in the local municipality, elected by general vote."

Mr Jim Wilson: I agree to that suggestion and submit my amendment as that.

The Vice-Chair: So that proposed amendment to the amendment is now incorporated in your amendment.

Mr Jim Wilson: Yes.

The Vice-Chair: Are all members clear on the one amendment now that contains that wording change?

Mr Jim Wilson: There's one more suggestion from legal counsel; that is, whether part (b) could read "two members appointed by and from the council of the township." That would make perfect sense to me.

The Vice-Chair: Anything further? If not, shall the amendment to section 11, being (8.1), carry? Carried.

Further amendments to section 11?

Mr Jim Wilson: I'm inclined not to introduce 11(9), given the discussion we just had; however, I just want to confer with counsel.

Given what we've just done in subsection 11(8.1), adding (8.1), clause 11(9)(a) of the motion before you is consequential. Therefore, I move that subsection 11(9) be amended by striking out "(b)" in the second line and not introducing the rest of that motion.

The Vice-Chair: Any question or comment? If not, shall amendment to subsection 11(9), as read, carry? Carried.

Shall section 11, as amended, carry? Carried.

Now we return to section 2, is that correct?

Mr McLean: I move that section 2 of the bill be amended by adding the following subsection:

"Boundary matters

"(7.2) Despite this section, in preparing the schedules under subsection (7) the minister shall ensure that,...

"(b) the boundary dividing the town of Penetanguishene from the town of Midland be located 600 feet south of Brunelle Road."

The other day, speaking on that, we had the mayor of Penetanguishene in and we had the mayor of Midland in. There appeared to be a great difference with regard to the positions put forward by both of those mayors. The information we had was that there are probably six hookups already for that property from the town of Penetanguishene, and after the mayor of Midland had finished his proposal, the mayor of Penetanguishene certainly didn't agree with his description of events that he thought had happened; therefore, I was hoping we would put it back where it originally was, within the boundaries of the town of Penetanguishene.

Mr Jim Wilson: Really just a note here, that we skipped a new amendment, 2(1)(a).

The Vice-Chair: I'm aware of that; we will be back to it. I have permission to proceed with this one now that it's been introduced, if that's acceptable to the committee. Is that all you had, Mr Wilson?

Mr Jim Wilson: Yes, at this time.

The Vice-Chair: Mr Waters and then Mr Conway.

Mr Waters: I personally am opposed to changing the line. What I heard yesterday is that this section of property was to be a buffer zone. What I heard from the town of Penetang was that it was going to be a buffer zone that was going to be built on and it would gradually peter out so that the last few feet of this area would become the buffer zone. I think a buffer zone is a buffer zone, and I would have problems with it because both the developer and the town stipulated that they intended to build this property, that they wanted it to build. Therefore, I can't support the amendment.

Mr Conway: I heard something of the same that Mr Waters just reported. I just wasn't clear, after the various submissions, that a compelling case had been made for this boundary amendment. Just speaking for my own imperfect ears, I came away thinking that this was a real dispute about what kind of a buffer zone it was going to be. I get the feeling, particularly from Mr Marchand, that there was an expectation from Penetang's point of view that it was going to be a more developable area than it might be from Midland's point of view. I may not have understood that completely and we heard a lot about a variety of boundaries, but I didn't feel I heard enough compelling testimony to make me favour this particular amendment, I'm sorry to say, Mr McLean.

Mr McLean: I have always won a few and lost a few before, but if you don't try, you certainly don't make many gains.

The Vice-Chair: Does anyone else wish to speak to this matter?

Mr Hayes: I just want to bring something to the attention of all the members on the committee. It's something I re-emphasized several times when we were doing our meetings, that since the submission of the county study --

Mr Conway: Don't tease the bears now.

Mr Hayes: But I just want to make it clear. Municipal Affairs and the county have maintained the position ever since the submission that the county council's proposed boundaries would only be altered if all of the affected municipalities agreed and it was adopted by the county council. I just want to make that clear so we may not spend too much time discussing it.

The Vice-Chair: Mr Conway wishes to speak.

Mr Conway: I want to speak for myself and I suspect at least one of my other colleagues in the caucus who is not now able to exercise anything but neutrality. I understand what the parliamentary assistant has said, but I think he did hear -- I heard -- a number of very powerful submissions made by sensible people that the process by means of which these boundaries were determined was not completely fair. I tell you, I just heard enough to make me believe that there was something wrong in that state of Denmark as some of those lines were finally agreed to.

Given what we've talked about before here -- and I don't consider it my job to start reconfiguring a lot of the work that's been done by a lot of people, but it is my job to listen to what people have said, and there have been submissions that have been made by good people that make me really uncomfortable about the process that was followed in some of these cases.

I've used this example many times before. I remember a few electoral redistributions around here and I remember how they were done.

Interjection: So do I.

Mr Conway: I'll tell you, it was a helpful thing to have been an incumbent, because certain arrangements were --

Interjection: I know.

Mr Conway: Now you'd never get anybody to admit to that publicly, but I've got to tell you, it happened.

All I'm saying is that as I look at this, and particularly when I think about some of what was said, I have a real problem in saying the Legislature, which has the ultimate responsibility, can now not pass any judgement, that our job is to simply say, "We confirm what you've agreed to and we'll only contemplate change if the two parties affected or the three parties affected agree."


In retrospect, I look at this and say to myself -- I don't know who I heard this from, but it was good advice -- at the beginning, it probably was a very important thing to have gotten yourself on to the right committee and to have stayed there from the very beginning and not left the room at any point. Some people did leave the room, and I think the boundary adjustments in some cases reflect some of that, and that's just human nature.

But I do not feel that I'm stepping out of line if I consider favourably an amendment on the basis of the evidence that I've heard, and I'm not telling any tales out of school. The one that most concerned me was the south tip of Orillia township on the basis of what I heard from a number of people, including a very strong submission from the reeve of Oro township yesterday.

Mr McLean: I'm very disappointed to hear the parliamentary assistant make the statement that he has made, although I'm not overly surprised that that was not the statement I was going to hear. But that's not what we travelled the county for. If the ministry had no intention of making any boundary line changes whatsoever, that should have been in his opening statement when he started, before the hearings were even held.

A lot of people came before that committee, and I believe there were some 55 municipalities and some 28 individuals who came to make presentations, hoping and anticipating that there would be some changes made in some of the boundaries. The ministry did not see fit to let them know that there would not be any changes. They never said it. There had always been the indication that boundaries were set by the county, that we're taking the county's report. What is the point in having hearings across the county if not one change is going to take place other than some of the housekeeping amendments we've seen, which were already going to be here anyway?

I want to proceed with the three amendments I have and I want to have votes on them, because I think it's important that the people should know that we have tried to make some changes. I want to read the other two amendments I have and put them on the record and indicate after that, if you want to vote on them, fine, and I would be prepared then.

There's another amendment I was --

The Vice-Chair: Mr McLean, could we deal with this amendment first, please? There will be opportunity to present all of your amendments, I assure you.

Mr McLean: Thank you.

The Vice-Chair: The parliamentary assistant and then a vote.

Mr Hayes: I'm not surprised that Mr McLean's not surprised, because I mentioned right from the beginning to some of the first people who came forward, that when people talked about having a boundary changed, the agreement the county had made was that the municipalities affected would have to agree. I think that was made clear right from day one; that's not a surprise. I just wanted to make that point.

The Vice-Chair: Does anyone else wish to speak? If not, shall the amendment to section 2, being "Boundary Matters," subsection (7.2), be carried?

A recorded vote. All those in favour?


McLean, Wilson (Simcoe West).

The Vice-Chair: Opposed?


Conway, Hayes, Murphy, O'Connor, Owens, Rizzo, Waters, Wessenger.

The Vice-Chair: The amendment is lost.

There is, as was pointed out, a proposed amendment to subsection 2(7.1). Is that Mr Wilson's?

Mr McLean: I wonder, Mr Chairman, if it would be possible to do my three. They're all per section 2, to keep them in order.

The Vice-Chair: Stand down (7.1) at this time. The next motion.

Mr McLean: I move that section 2 of the bill be amended by adding the following subsection:

"Boundary matters

"(7.2) Despite this section, in preparing the schedules under subsection (7) the minister shall ensure that,...

"(c) the parcel of land known as part of the east half of lot 19, concession 7, township of Vespra and the parcel of land known as part of lot 19, concession 7, township of Vespra and the parcel of land known as the west part of Lot 19, Concession 6, township of Vespra be included within the city of Barrie's boundaries."

I'd like to speak just briefly to that.

The Vice-Chair: Mr McLean, proceed.

Mr McLean: The reason why I'm presenting this resolution is the fact that the city of Barrie agrees with it. I know that the boundary line in the north part of the city is built to the limits. This was a small development area that would add -- and perhaps slow down Barrie's future annexation wants, which it will be applying for, and I thought that it would be a benefit to that whole corner, with regard to the gravel road and the problems that they've had, if it was included within the city of Barrie. I think it's an asset and I believe that the new township of Springwater did not agree to it because it felt that it wanted to maintain the viability of its municipality. However, I believe that the small parcel would be appropriately in the city of Barrie.

The Vice-Chair: Any comments, questions by anyone?

Mr Conway: Paul, do you want to speak to that?

The Vice-Chair: Mr Wessenger?

Mr Wessenger: Mr Conway is sort of teasing me to speak on this.

The Vice-Chair: We'll term it an invitation.

Mr Wessenger: I think that this probably brings to the attention perhaps the major difficulty with respect to the restructuring report, and that is that the cities were not included in the restructuring, and the whole basis of the report is that we're not to deal with the boundaries of cities, although I think that's regrettable, but that's the way it is.

Now, if members of the committee open up the matter of city boundaries, I certainly will look at the matter with other amendments, but I think this is really a restructuring of the county and the jurisdiction within the county and not designed to change boundaries with respect to the two separated cities. For that reason, I don't want to open up that whole situation. That's the basic reason for it, not because I don't think that the -- in fact, I do think that the boundary change has merits but I think there are probably many other areas around the city of Barrie that equally should be considered for consideration.

The Vice-Chair: Mr Conway.

Mr Conway: I appreciate it. I didn't mean to put my friend from Barrie on the spot, because we did have some -- I'm sorry, but listen --

Mr Wessenger: That's all right, Sean. It's fair.

Mr Conway: I mean, I depend on the people's pal Al here to keep me straight up around Orillia and Oro. We did have one submission on this, I think, didn't we?

Mr Wessenger: Yes. We had a presentation by the owner of the land.

Mr Conway: That's correct.

Mr Wessenger: You see, it's within the watershed, so from a planning point of view it certainly makes some sense.

Mr Conway: I thought he made some good points.

Mr Wessenger: Yes, there's no question about it.

Mr Conway: I don't favour the amendment, not because I think that it ultimately shouldn't happen, but I don't think this is the way for it to happen.

Mr Wessenger: That's my position too.

Mr Conway: But I'll say again, boy, that north boundary of Barrie, Bayfield Road, is that roughly the corridor that --

Mr Wessenger: Bayfield Street goes just beyond the malls.

Mr Conway: Anyway, I'll say no more.

Mr Wessenger: It's a disaster. I'm agreeing with you.

The Vice-Chair: Anyone else? If not, shall the amendment to section 2, being clause 2(7.2)(c), carry? All those in favour? Opposed? Motion lost.

Mr McLean: Mr Chairman, I have another motion with regard to section 2.

I move that section 2 of the bill be amended by adding the following subsection:

"Boundary matters

"(7.2) Despite this section, in preparing the schedules under subsection (7) the minister shall ensure that,

"(a) the boundary dividing the township of Oro and Medonte from the township of Severn be the former boundary dividing the township of Orillia from the township of Oro."

I'd like to speak briefly to that, Mr Chairman.

The Vice-Chair: Go ahead.

Mr McLean: Mr Chairman, you'll find a letter that was circulated this morning from the mayor of the city of Orillia. He felt very sorry that he didn't attend the hearings because he didn't believe that he was supposed to. He talked to me this morning, very concerned with regard to the presentations that were made and the support that was there for this to be part of the Orillia township. He, in a statement in the paper you will read, made a very strong presentation to the ministry to acquire the land. "We've been after it for a long time," said Orillia Mayor Clayton French. "We joined forces with Orillia township on that. There's no rationale that would stand the light of day to give that to Oro," he added.

So he has asked me, as well as the municipality has, to present a resolution before this committee to have that returned back to the municipality of the township of Orillia. The indications from the reeve of Oro yesterday -- very strong reasons why he felt it should remain. However, the mayor insisted that we proceed with this amendment on his behalf and on behalf of the township of Orillia council.


Mr Conway: Thank you very much, and I really appreciate this amendment. I must say that the member for Simcoe East is in a difficult spot here and I really appreciate his willingness to do this because it's not an easy thing for any local member, because we heard Oro township make a pretty strong case against it. But this is the one boundary change that on the basis of the evidence that I heard, on balance, I want to support.

The argument that's been advanced for the change of taking the bottom piece of Orillia township and tucking it into the new Oro-Medonte, I just don't think is, on balance, the better argument after a week of these hearings. I must say too, I thought Councillor Thiess -- is it? -- the delegation we heard yesterday with Gowanlock and the previous reeve of Orillia township and some of those other people, I thought they were very, very compelling on a number of fronts.

To me, the Bass Lake or watershed question, including the local member, I thought Al made a good point there a number of times. I thought that what we heard around the planning arrangements that had already been considered between the township of Orillia and the city of Orillia about the Forest Home area, it just didn't seem to me that all things considered, there was a strong enough argument made to support the change that was contemplated.

I thought Bob Drury was good. He was very firm, I thought, in his submission, and I thought his body language after he left the witness table was perhaps even more impressive. I get the feeling that Oro-Medonte is not going to like this and that we are probably missing some of the internal dialogue that led to this change. But I just simply have to make a judgement on the basis of what I heard, and when I look at the criteria that were established for this restructuring, when I listen to the arguments around watershed and community of interest, I read some of the press reports that have been made available, I listen to some people like Councillor Thiess talk about the views of people who live down in the Forest Home area, I expect that at some point some of this is going to move into the city of Orillia, some of it sooner than others. Now, we hear from the mayor of the city.

This is certainly an amendment that I will be supporting because I think the burden of evidence supports this.

The Vice-Chair: Anyone else? Mr Wessenger?

Mr Wessenger: Yes. I'd really like to speak on this item too, because I must say that I have some concern about the matter.

I'm afraid I'm not going to be able to support the resolution for some specific reasons. I think that from a planning point of view, quite frankly, this area properly belongs in the city of Orillia. I think that's fair to say, and that's where it ought to be, not with either the town -- we're doing boundary changes. Again, that's not going to happen, because it's not dealing with the restructuring of the cities, but I think it does properly belong to the city of Orillia and the township of Orillia has indicated that's where they would like to see it go. Certainly, from a planning point of view, I would be able to support it going to the city of Orillia.

With respect to the question of Oro and Orillia, I'm concerned that the amendment leaves Bass Lake within two jurisdictions. If we look at what the study committee had recommended at one stage, it recommended that the whole of Bass Lake area be within the township of Orillia, and it seems that the planning position put forward by the township of Orillia and Matchedash in support was that the Bass Lake area should be all included in one jurisdiction, and this amendment doesn't do that.

The third reason is really just from driving so many times up that road to Orillia, and I've always thought it seemed out of place, the fact that Orillia township was located in that particular area because on one side of the road you had Oro, almost, and on the other side you had Orillia township, so I can see some planning arguments. I can see some arguments. When drawing boundaries completely from the beginning, I can see some argument that Oro might have some claim for it. In fact I think there are mixed planning arguments on both sides, although I think the only really valid planning argument is quite frankly the city of Orillia.

I think there are counterbalancing planning arguments on each side. I don't really want to put my judgement over, but the county has decided on this issue. So for that and the reason that I don't think it makes sense to split Bass Lake, I can't support the motion.

Mr McLean: If it doesn't make sense to split Bass Lake, that's exactly what has happened. It has been split. The water system has been split. The only way that you'd have a whole water system would be if it was put into the township of Orillia because that's the headwaters of the North River and they go into Matchedash Bay. I mean, I know the area very, very well.

For you to say that it should stay in one watershed, well, it's not now. It has been taken out. The only way you'd have it in one watershed is if it's in the township of Orillia. I don't think it would have mattered if it had been part of my resolution. There have been other reasons why I could not support it, but to use the watershed as a reason, I don't think is a very good one.

You indicated in the press the other day that the committee has the power to make changes. I would hope that they would have looked favourably upon what all the people in that area believe an injustice. My phone rang this morning in my constituency office with regard to this very issue. The people from the Eight Mile Point area do not want to be in Oro township. They want to remain in Orillia township. They're saying, "Is there no justice?" We'll find out where the justice is being done here.

Mr Conway: If I could make one point too, just that it is from the point of view of those people. I mean they're going to -- it may be that this is all going to be in the city of Orillia some day. I think of what Councillor Thiess and others said about -- if I were a citizen in there, I'd want there to be a compelling reason to bounce me from Orillia into Oro and then back into the city. I don't think that compelling argument has been made.

I think we owe to the people who live in there not to disrupt and dislocate them unduly. I think we are going to do that as a result of the change that's proposed, that the amendment seeks to reverse. So it's looking at that from the point of view of: If I lived at Eight Mile Point and I heard Mr Wessenger, and he's made a good argument, but I'd be thinking, well, if I'm going to go into the city of Orillia, why do you want to take me from the township of Orillia and put me in the township of Oro-Medonte on my way into the city of Orillia? That's just an unnecessary and annoying, and perhaps even more than annoying, diversion.

Mr O'Connor: One of the difficulties that we, as members of the Legislature, have is that we are in the position now of reviewing the information that has been brought forward, hearing from witnesses as they come forward bringing different compelling evidence. Of course in our deliberations, we've heard from a number of residents, ratepayers up in that area. There's been talk about plebiscites and what not.

I was going through the evidence as presented and the proposed boundaries that were first put out in the draft study report, dated May 1991, which of course was before the municipal election, taking a look at the proposed boundaries as proposed by then the county, there are obviously some changes.

I'm looking at the map on page 11-1, if any of my colleagues want to take a look there. You could see where, at that time, the proposed boundaries included that little lake at the bottom end into Orillia township, then to become Severn later on. One part of what we're missing here is all the negotiations, you know, when people left the room and all that, that's the dynamic that we don't know about.

For some reason or other, as I take a look at the map, from the proposed one, the original one that was put out for public consultation, and I take a look at Oro-Medonte and I take a look over at the western boundary that they had, it looked like, to me, and maybe not knowing the area quite so well as -- Mr McLean, perhaps you could help me out. Over in Springwater, at the bottom end, it would be the southeast corner, I would think, of Flos township, which in the proposed part actually wasn't included in Medonte-Oro, but then that whole line at the bottom end of Vespra ended up in Medonte-Oro. Then of course, when we get to where we're at today, that's not even in there.

Obviously there were some very delicate negotiations going on through this entire process because it looks to me like an incredible amount of land mass that has changed from township to township going through this process. Not knowing the county as well as my colleagues that represent those areas, I think I'd have to question exactly what is it within those boundaries, the commercial assessment that has been looked at going through this very delicate process.

Obviously the municipalities involved, the townships, have taken a look at this quite seriously and there have been a lot of negotiation taking place. I'm reluctant to support it on those bases, because I'm just looking at the land mass within this type of setup that we've got and I'm just going by the maps, so I don't even know the assessments. But it seems like there's been a great deal of negotiation taking place. So I don't know, I'm not convinced that we should be making that change at this time, but I'm certainly willing to listen to my colleagues' further discussion around this.

Mr Waters: A couple of comments, one on what Mr Wessenger had said earlier on about this little neck. I think if you look back when Orillia township's original boundary was cut, there wasn't such a thing as the city of Orillia. So indeed, this was no longer, as it's shown on the map right now, a narrow -- at one point, I guess it's one concession wide. That wasn't the case.

What I would be curious about is, I keep hearing --

Mr Conway: Do I hear shirt-tails flapping in the wind?

Mr Waters: I keep hearing about how the people want to go to the city of Orillia and I'm curious why, over the next year, that can't be a friendly annexation. Can that happen? Indeed the situation in Barrie that we turned down would be a similar situation where these two cities are outside. As my friend from Orillia sitting opposite has said, the people want to go to Orillia, it's in the planning, the township has said that. What happens if in the next year or the next few months they decide to do a friendly annexation and that happened?

The Vice-Chair: I believe the terminology would be apply to annex territory from another municipality.

Mr Conway: I'd just ask my friends again to think about what Reeve Gowanlock, what former Reeve Fountain, what Councillor Thiess said. Remember what we were told. Remember as well what Bob Drury said. I make my judgement on this one on the basis of the evidence I heard, and the evidence I heard I think supports Mr McLean's amendment.

The Vice-Chair: Thank you, Mr Conway. Anyone else? If not, shall the amendment to section 2, which would add clause (7.2)(a), carry? All those in favour?

Mr Conway: Wait. Just reput the question.

The Vice-Chair: Am I too soon?

Mr Waters: Can I have this set aside just for a couple of minutes?

The Vice-Chair: Mr Waters has requested that the vote on this item be set aside for -- how long?

Mr Waters: I just need a couple of minutes to confer on this.

The Vice-Chair: The problem is, the amendment is on the floor.

Mr Waters: Can I have a two-minute recess then?

The Vice-Chair: Recess for two minutes.

The committee recessed from 1435 to 1438.

The Vice-Chair: Members, ladies and gentlemen, the committee has reconvened and Mr Waters had finished speaking, I believe. Is that correct? Mr McLean, you indicated you wished to speak.

Mr McLean: I just wanted to say a couple of words before the vote. One thing that the parliamentary assistant said that just bothered me a little bit was that these were done by agreement. These boundary lines were not agreed to by Orillia township in any way, shape or form. So to say that they were done by agreement is not totally factual. They were agreed to by the county study committee, voted on the county council, but not agreed to by the township of Orillia.

The Vice-Chair: Thank you for the information. Mr Waters?

Mr Hayes: I won't bother responding. You don't listen very well.

Mr Waters: I guess what would help me make my final decision on this is if I could hear from the people from the ministry that were there. I would like them to comment on this. I don't know whether you have that up to this point on this particular one.

Mr Griggs: When you say "that were there," you mean working with the study committee.

Mr Waters: And indeed on what I had said before about the friendly annexation and that type of thing.

Mr Griggs: I can speak to the process. Under the Municipal Boundary Negotiations Act, any municipality can apply for an annexation involving a neighbouring municipality. The way the process works is there's a negotiation process between the municipalities and when they reach an agreement, it can be implemented.

I should caution you, however, that it becomes a little tricky in this case because, although it would be an annexation between the existing municipalities of Orillia and Oro, there are a number of other parties that may become involved because of the proposed amalgamations. For example, would Medonte be a party to those negotiations? Would Matchedash or Coldwater? These are decisions that the minister could make and the municipalities would make.

Mr Waters: What happens if they did that before 1994? In other words, they leave here today, drive home and start.

Mr Griggs: They could presumably do that. However, the act does provide the minister with the authority to name parties, and given that the other municipalities that will be combined in the new units would have an interest in the areas involved, I imagine that might be an avenue he may want to pursue.

In addition, I should also point out that there are administrative procedures, things such as public consultation, that of course require due notice and time. Given that we are now getting close to September, while it's still possible to have such an agreement implemented before this restructuring takes place, the time lines are very tight given the administrative procedures under the act.

Mr Waters: Okay.

The Vice-Chair: We'll now proceed with the vote, amendment to section 2 adding (7.2)(a). All those in favour of the amendment? Opposed? The amendment is lost.

Mr Conway: I heard shirt-tails flapping in the wind.

The Vice-Chair: Are there any further amendments to section 2?

Mr Jim Wilson: For the committee's information, I had an amendment (7.3) before you. I will not be introducing that.


Mr Jim Wilson: Subsection (7.3). It was adding a clause. There is an amendment (7.1)(a) and (b). Does everybody have that? For the committee's information, clause (b) will be dealt with in another amendment to 2(1)(a) and therefore I will not be reading that into the record.

Therefore, I move that section 2 of the bill be amended by adding the following subsection:

"Boundary matters

"(7.1) Despite this section, in preparing the schedules under subsection (7) the minister shall ensure that,

"(a) the easterly boundary of the town of New Tecumseth extends to Highway 27 and includes lots 23 and 24 of the former township of Tecumseth."

The Vice-Chair: You read the whole amendment? Did that include (b)?

Mr Jim Wilson: Clause (b) is no longer forming part of that amendment. It's being replaced by another amendment.

Mr Wessenger: I'll be opposing this amendment because it's reopening the whole restructuring of south Simcoe. I might point out, just for the information of members of the committee, that Highway 27 is not a continuous boundary in the restructuring. There's the village of Cookstown, which was included into the part of Innisfil, and there was also Thornton, which was included into the part of Essa.

I suggest that the planning principle in this circumstance was correct in that the principle that the highway not be a boundary is a desirable feature of a boundary on the basis that, certainly for servicing aspects, a highway does not make a very convenient boundary. Also, I don't think we should reopen the south Simcoe restructuring.

The Vice-Chair: Mr Conway?

Mr Jim Wilson: Could I respond? I mean, you couldn't be more wrong. This bill opens up south Simcoe. We've got some boundary changes between New Tecumseth and Essa, between New Tecumseth and Adjala and Tosorontio, all the way around New Tecumseth except this eastern side you guys don't want to touch.

The reason you don't want to touch it is Bradford-West Gwillimbury, without the agreement of New Tecumseth, was given two significant north-south corridors, the entire Highway 27, which used to be the boundary of Tecumseth, and Highway 11, if members recall the map. It has left New Tecumseth, with the Honda plant and other industry, with no north-south corridor. It was a political decision which the previous government admits was a mistake. The only objection I've heard the government say is one about highways, and Mr Wessenger just indicated that.

I'm not referring to the section of the county north of Cookstown, where, by the way, Highway 27 for some reason is allowed to be the boundary, but south of Cookstown on the east side of New Tecumseth for some reason it's not allowed to be the boundary.

We heard yesterday the witnesses indicating the inconvenience of the snowplows crossing Highway 27 at every concession road and having to turn around two lots later and go back. I mean, it's an absolutely silly line. It was put there for political reasons. My predecessor, George McCague, the mayor of New Tecumseth, would confirm that, as did Bernard Grandmaître during debate on this on June 4 in the Legislature. Why there's a stubbornness I don't know.

I refer members to the attempts by New Tecumseth to come to some sort of arrangement with the town of Bradford-West Gwillimbury. This was circulated earlier. It's a motion by the town of New Tecumseth, dated July 7, 1992, even offering to buy back their former easterly boundary.

The other point is, at the time of the structuring of south Simcoe, there was no rule in place that municipalities had to agree. Certainly New Tecumseth never agreed to this. Therefore, to apply that criterion retroactively to this scenario is in error.

I know Mr Conway wants to say few words, but just for the world of me, I can't understand why we can't move the line back to where it was. I did the private member's resolution in June 1992. The vast majority of property owners who were thrown into Bradford-West Gwillimbury continue to this day to object to being there. They have no historic affiliation whatsoever with that side of the highway, and I don't see why we can't use highways as a natural line. There are no service problems on the highway itself. Neither municipality actually services the highway. It is a provincial highway. So it's not like you have split jurisdiction on the highway. The sanders and plows and that are all provincial.

Finally, though, if it's not accepted by the committee, I would like an answer from the government, given that New Tecumseth can't afford the boundary negotiations act and the costs that would be incurred under that. They're ratepayers there. They're thinking they would have to charge those ratepayers who were unjustly thrown into Bradford-West Gwillimbury, those two lots west of the highway, with the cost of going through that, and there simply aren't enough houses there to foot the bill for a lengthy process. If people would read the resolution, they've gone as far as offering to provide compensation for any cost that Bradford-West Gwillimbury may have incurred as a result of the forced amalgamation down there. But my question there would be, what are you supposed to do if you can't get Bradford-West Gwillimbury to even talk about this issue?

Of course it was a gift to them by the former government because it was represented by the Liberals there. The Liberal member went in and said, "We're going to draw the line two blocks east," along the ditches of the bloody highway. It doesn't make any sense.


What do you say to my constituents who have property with the house in one jurisdiction and the barn in the other? It doesn't make any sense to these people. There's Keith Robertson, a very good example of exactly that. His property is split. If you ever even try to find this line, it's impossible. It goes down these fields. There aren't even fence lines in half of it, so it doesn't make any sense to anybody.

Finally, for provincial representation purposes and federal, the dividing line is still Highway 27. Now we have this little piece Mr Wessenger's got. He's got about 200 houses along the ditch. It doesn't make any sense whatsoever.

We need a north-south corridor, and I think, in fairness, you should be allowed to split that north-south corridor. Bradford-West Gwillimbury can continue to develop on the side they've always had for 100 years, and why can't New Tecumseth develop on the side it had previous to this forced amalgamation?

The Vice-Chair: Parliamentary assistant.

Mr Jim Wilson: No, I'm sorry. I just want to make a correction there. Mr Wessenger at this point doesn't have, obviously, the west side, but if there was a boundary change and it went along the municipal boundaries, he would then incur it, or whoever was the representative at that time. Sorry, I just wanted to correct that.

The Vice-Chair: Parliamentary assistant.

Mr Hayes: Just to assist members of this committee, I'd like Mr Griggs to clarify a few issues here dealing with that particular highway.

Mr Griggs: There has been some discussion regarding the criteria used by the study committee regarding the use of roads and highways as boundary lines. I'll just restate the criterion. It's number 6 of the study committee's guiding principles. It reads: "Existing roads, other than access controlled provincial highways, are not considered to be good municipal boundaries."

In fact there was a question as to whether this Highway 27 is or is not a controlled access highway. We've got a fax from the Ministry of Transportation that I can distribute to all the members. It's two sheets, and it's already collated.

This section of Highway 27 is a class IV major highway, and I'll just read what that means in terms of access:

" -- Direct access for existing uses (or vacant ownerships created prior to subdivision control) may remain in and may be eligible for conversion to service another type of use.

" -- Entrances for newly created parcels will generally only be considered for total holdings having in excess of 1,000 feet of highway frontage or within a reduced speed zone; or where existing (not `field') entrances are available; or for one interfamily/farm-related severance; or where local road access is available.

" -- Public road entrances will be considered."

I think it's fairly clear that this is not a controlled- access highway in this area, just to make that clear for all the members of the committee.

The Vice-Chair: Mr Conway, please.

Mr Conway: I want to say at the outset that the member for Simcoe West deserves full marks for his very vigorous efforts to address this concern that is obviously a real irritation for people in the New Tecumseth part of his constituency. I know how very strongly he feels about this, and I want that to say at the outset.

I thought it was helpful that he distributed the resolution from the corporation of the new town of Tecumseth signed by his honour my old pal George McCague, and I thought the resolution was interesting. I thought the second page was also interesting, the response from the town of Bradford-West Gwillimbury. They just thanked George very much for his interest and that was the end of it.

I think, even if we wanted to do this, there's a question -- I really do want to focus on the substantive questions, but on this there is a process question as well, that to favour this and to make this amendment without having provided an opportunity for the town of West Gwillimbury-Bradford to come and say, "Well, you know, Wessenger's got it all wrong," or "He's got it all right," or "Wilson's got it half right" is just I don't think fair.

That's not to diminish the concern that the member has made. Mr Wilson, again, has been very passionate on this subject. But on a very important procedural ground I just couldn't favour this because I would feel that I'd done something quite unfair to one of the parties, though in the end I might very well want to agree with Mr Wilson. But I didn't hear enough from all of the parties affected to make any kind of a judgement around this matter.

I feel very badly on the subject about one of Mr McLean's, the issue around that business about the township of Vespra, because I know from the one person we heard there was very real feeling about the need for change. But I didn't favour that, not because it isn't a good idea, but I just don't think we can make that kind of change, as we can't make this kind of change, on the basis of these proceedings and what we've heard, or not heard in this case, from the town of West Gwillimbury-Bradford.

Mr Waters: First off, I'm at a loss when my colleague Mr Wilson says they don't have a north-south access, because the highways -- they don't care whose township they're in, they just run. The people in Alliston -- don't tell me they're not using Highway 27 to go north or south because it's now in another township. They definitely use it the same as they always did. The travel patterns are the same.

I have a problem -- I agree with Mr Conway over this -- where we're entering some negotiations that have been resolved in 1989 and we haven't welcomed all the parties in to hear all sides of the story. I really have a problem doing that. I guess that's why, again, I won't be supporting this because of that. I really have some problems where people from all sides haven't had their opportunity to come and be heard. This was done in 1989. My understanding was we were dealing with north Simcoe, which was the part of Simcoe county that wasn't reorganized in 1989. For those reasons, I can't support it.

Mr Jim Wilson: I appreciate the thoughtful words from colleagues, but just a couple of responses. One is to take the latter point made by Mr Waters. If you read Bill 51, we are dealing with New Tecumseth. Also, what we are doing in this bill is dissolving, making null and void the 1990 act, incorporating parts of it in Bill 51. We are dealing with the entirety of the south Simcoe restructuring issue. We haven't had a request, except for this, and there's a request from Adjala and New Tecumseth on the other side to change boundaries. That's why there hasn't been a lot of debate on it and that's maybe why you have the impression we're not dealing with south Simcoe. In fact, after Bill 51 passes, there will be no south Simcoe act; it's all one Simcoe county act.

The point about a north-south corridor was not access, it's development. I defy you to find me a north-south corridor in New Tecumseth now. We don't have one. In fact, it's a constant pain between the Ministry of Transportation and Honda to direct Honda where it actually can bring its hundreds of trucks per week in and out. It's been an ongoing debate. I don't want to leave the impression that we want this corridor exclusively for Honda -- they're solving their problems in a piecemeal way with the ministry -- but the fact is the town has no corridor in which to develop along for commercial-industrial development.

I would agree with members who have expressed the frustration that we haven't heard from Bradford-West Gwillimbury, except that I would ask you to adopt my mindset that it didn't seem to matter at all, if you put your mind back to the south Simcoe restructuring. Nobody cared what New Tecumseth's thoughts were on this; the line was simply drawn. I think fair is fair. If they were given a corridor with no concern to New Tecumseth, you can equally try and redress that situation without asking West Gwillimbury. Put it back the way it was and both sides should be happy. I'm sure they could live with it.

Even common sense tells me we already know Bradford-West Gwillimbury's line. Why would they ever come to committee, unless the Legislature takes a decision on this, and say, "Yes, we're going to give you back half our corridor"? They're not going to do it. Why waste their time? You know their answer. Mr Wessenger has conveyed that to the committee.

The point is, it wasn't fair when it was done and it would seem somewhat unfair to someone to have to undo it while I think on balance you're looking at a fair equation. It's the mindset of 1990 that one has to be in when redressing this issue and, secondly, the criteria that are being applied by our good friend from the ministry come out of a May 1991 book. To retroactively apply those criteria to the south Simcoe restructuring is unfair. That stuff is drafted up a year after. There were criteria generally thought to be used for south Simcoe that you were not to use roads as boundaries, where possible. That's the only justification, to this date, being given for that. But I see in a number of other areas, even today, a violation of that principle, when we look at 400, 69 and many other areas in the province.


Interjection: It's a controlled-access highway.

Mr Jim Wilson: But in terms of the original criteria, it's just roads; it didn't say controlled-access.

Mr Hayes: I just want to raise one point to the members of the committee: This issue was brought to county council. There was a resolution and the resolution read that the Minister of Municipal Affairs be asked to re-examine the eastern boundary of the town of the amalgamated municipalities of Alliston, Beeton, Tecumseth and Tottenham, and this was defeated at county council.

Mr Chair, I appreciate what Mr Wilson has been saying, but I don't believe we can handle this at this particular committee. I would suggest to Mr Wilson that maybe to continue to pursue this if -- I know he mentioned how he had the private resolutions --

Mr Jim Wilson: Change of government.

Mr Hayes: Well, if you want to change the --

Mr McLean: Ratepayers will pursue it in 1995.

Mr Hayes: Do you want some help or do you want me to just --

The Vice-Chair: Any other speakers? If not, shall the amendment to section 2, being boundary matters, subsection (7.1)(a) and (b), carry? Those in favour of the amendment?


McLean, Wilson (Simcoe West).

The Vice-Chair: Opposed?


Conway, Hayes, Murphy, O'Connor, Owens, Rizzo, Waters, Wessenger.

The Vice-Chair: The amendment is lost.

Are there any other amendments to section 2 at this time? Mr Wilson, please.

Mr Jim Wilson: I move that clause 2(1)(a) of the bill be struck out and the following substituted:

"(a) the town of New Tecumseth consisting of those portions of the former municipalities of the town of New Tecumseth, the township of Essa, the township of Tosorontio and the township of Adjala described in schedule 1;"

This amendment, for members' information, was written out by hand and photocopied. This amendment was originally contained in one of the PC typed motions.

The legislative counsel has requested and suggested that the wording I've just read into the record is more appropriate and I'd like to just circulate at this time the agreement between Adjala and New Tecumseth, signed this morning by both the mayor of New Tecumseth and Tom Walsh, the reeve of Adjala, indicating that they agree with this motion. I hope we'll also get agreement from all members here.

Mr McLean: I agree.

Mr Hayes: I think this is the kind of thing we've been discussing. I think here's a case where the municipalities got together, negotiated and had it endorsed by the county. I think we'll have to compliment them on the hard work they've done.

Mr Conway: So if we vote for this, this won't cause great hardship?

Mr Hayes: No, it won't.

Interjection: None at all.

Mr Conway: Well, that's good.

The Vice-Chair: Any speakers on this matter?

Mr Jim Wilson: I appreciate the support, but that eight acres of land was a mistake in the first place so --

The Vice-Chair: If there are no speakers -- Mr Conway.


Mr Conway: It's that little piece? Oh, all right. Well, I have so many pieces of --

Mr Owens: Don't tease the bears.

Mr Conway: No, I won't tease them.

The Vice-Chair: Shall the amendment to clause 2(1)(a) carry? Carried.

Shall section 2 -- did you want a recorded vote on that one? Shall section 2, as amended, carry? Carried.

Mr Conway: I am going to arrange a luncheon date with Jim Wilson and Darcy McKeough and I'll pay.

The Vice-Chair: May I attend? We should now proceed, I believe, to section 50. Section 50 was stood down, I believe. Now, I will ask if the amendment to section 2 that was just passed requires an amendment to section 50, or will it take time to determine that?

Mr Hayes: No, it doesn't.

The Vice-Chair: Shall section 50 carry? Carried.

Interjection: I don't think we've reached 68.

The Vice-Chair: No we hadn't reached that as a matter of fact. That was the next clause to go to. However, my attention has been --

Interjection: No, go ahead.

The Vice-Chair: Section 68. Shall section 68 carry? Carried.

Shall we go on with the bill? The parliamentary assistant wishes to report on two matters regarding --

Mr Griggs: There were two issues that were raised by the township of Mara in their presentation to the committee that I indicated I would look into and get back to them on and I just wanted to have on the record a response.

One was the matter of the urban service areas where a municipality by bylaw under subsection 29(2) identified an urban service area. It requires approval of the Ontario Municipal Board. There was a question as to whether they could establish urban service areas without have to go to the Ontario Municipal Board. It's my understanding, and I've been told, that they can also proceed under the Municipal Act which would not require OMB approval. So in fact this section just provides some added flexibility to the municipality to establish urban service areas.

The other issue was regarding clause 45(1)(a) and (3)(a) and it's regarding some of the wording. I wanted to refer this to legislative counsel if I could because it's a matter of the wording used in the bill.

Mr Waters: It's on another subject that somehow I think we might have overlooked today. I don't know whether it's proper to bring it up or not at this point, but I think we should have some discussion. That is Oak Ridge and the policing. Was that covered off anywhere today?

The Vice-Chair: Yes.

Mr Hayes: We did that.

Mr Waters: We did. Okay.

The Vice-Chair: That was discussed previously.

Mr Jim Wilson: For the record, I'd just like one brief explanation as to why there wasn't an amendment to incorporate the name Clearview in the bill. Perhaps we can just have that on the record.

Mr Griggs: In the cases where you have a number of amalgamating municipalities, where the name of the new municipality would not reflect the municipalities that are being amalgamated -- in other words, where the municipalities wanted to put a new name in the bill we, as a policy, required the agreement of all of the municipalities involved in the form of a resolution of all the councils.

In the case of Nottawasaga, Sunnidale, Stayner and Creemore, we received resolutions on the name Clearview from three of the municipalities, but not from all four. So one of the municipalities had not supported that name, in our view, and we didn't feel we should put the name in on that basis. In all other cases, the name shown in the bill was supported by the councils. I should also point out that there is provision at a municipality's request for the minister to alter a municipality's name in 1995.

Mr Conway: I have a comment. I've substituted all week on this committee and I do have a long drive; I've got to go to a municipal meeting. I really did appreciate this. This was a very interesting exercise. It's given me some very -- I've been around here 18 years, but I've never done one of these municipal bills like this. This has been a very illustrative process for me and I'm certainly going to want to say some things on third reading.


Mr O'Connor: Sure.

Mr Conway: I hear Jim Wilson. I'm sure he's right about what we did and some of the unfinished business or some of the misery that the south Simcoe restructuring of 1990 caused.

I really appreciated the witnesses, the people of Simcoe county, on very short notice. I hope there is something we can do. I just say to the committee that I thought the reeve of Nottawasaga, Reeve Currie, made a really good point yesterday about the difficulties of the short time lines. That's something I think we should think about. I thought, on short notice, a lot of people came forward and made some extremely helpful observations. The parliamentary secretary did very well in difficult circumstances. I'm going to have to take off, but I really appreciated this. As a member from a very large rural county, I'll tell you this has been a very important part of my education, and I appreciate the opportunity to take part.

The Vice-Chair: Thank you, Mr Conway. Perhaps we'll have the opportunity of visiting in Renfrew at some future time. I'm sure if the previous Chair were still present at this time, he would state that the committee has also appreciated your attendance, at times, on the committee as well.

Mr Conway: Thanks. I want to thank the member for Simcoe East for his hospitality the other night. It was a very kind thing he did.

Mr Owens: As the parliamentary assistant, I certainly appreciate all the words Mr Conway had to say. Just before we adjourn quickly and everybody runs out, I think it would be remiss if I did not thank all of the staff, all the members of the committee and also the municipal people. They went through a lot harder things than we did in dealing with this restructuring. I'd just like to thank everyone for their participation, on this committee, and through the whole process.

The Vice-Chair: To complete the bill, shall the title of the bill carry? Carried.

Shall I report Bill 51 to the House as amended?

Mr McLean: No.

Mr Owens: Yes. Agreed.

The Vice-Chair: Do you wish to vote on that?

Mr Owens: No. They're joking.

He's got another clarification.

Mr Griggs: There's a concern from Mara township that hasn't been dealt with on the record. I referred it to legislative counsel, but she didn't have --

The Vice-Chair: Will that be circulated by memo?

Mr Griggs: It has to go on to the public record, because I suggested that I would get back to them.

The township of Mara had raised a concern regarding some of the wording used in section 45 of the bill regarding the continuation of bylaws and the dates involved. I just wanted to clarify and answer their concern on the record, and I wanted to refer it to legislative counsel to do that.

Ms Mifsud: The question that was put to me was, we use the construction "the greater of (a) and (b)." I guess the people up there thought it should be "the greater of (a) or (b)." The correct grammatical approach is "the greater of (a) and (b)." Although "or" is becoming accepted, the better grammar in the books is "the greater of (a) and (b)." That's on the record.

The Vice-Chair: On behalf of the committee, I would like to thank all of those individuals representing themselves or communities, councils etc who appeared before the committee at the hearings. Thank you for taking the time and making the effort to do that. It's been very helpful to the committee, and I certainly echo the parliamentary assistant's appreciation to the ministry staff. Mr McLean, did you have a point?

Mr McLean: I had a few minor remarks I wanted to make and this may be an appropriate time.

Many people are aware of the problems we have had with restructuring in the county of Simcoe, the years that I've been opposed to county restructuring and the way it was done. As it started out, they were supposed to be looking at the feasibility, a study to look into the feasibility of restructuring. That never did happen. They have proceeded with restructuring.

During the last election campaign, there were people talking about restructuring. The member for Simcoe Centre said, "When I'm elected member for Simcoe Centre, I will see the proposed restructuring of Simcoe county scrapped," we have other statements made by the member for Muskoka-Georgian Bay and we see them here today voting in favour of this piece of legislation, which we have spent thousands of dollars having hearings on that have not amounted to a hill of beans, so to speak, because the agenda had been laid out.

I can tell you that on third reading we will have a full debate and there will have to be closure before they will get it passed. It's bad legislation and it will prove to be bad legislation. The county people had indicated on many occasions that if they didn't do it, the province would do it for them. The parliamentary assistant said that is not so. Where did the word come from that they had to do it? I just hope the county of Simcoe can survive the knock that it has had.

I want to thank the parliamentary assistant for his efforts during the hearings we have had, because it's been as difficult for him as it has been for many others.

The Vice-Chair: The meeting is adjourned. Thank you for your attendance.

The committee adjourned at 1516.