The City of Kingston has received its first land use planning appeal under the new Local Planning Appeals Tribunal (LPAT), enacted on April 3, 2018. I provided a previous blog post related to the changes brought in by Bill 139, click here to access that post.
About the appeal
The application for the re-zoning of 268 Victoria Street, which was refused by City Council, was appealed to the LPAT by the applicant. The City is currently in the process of preparing the ‘enhanced municipal record’ for submission to the LPAT. Click here for access the Staff Report on the planning application. Once the Tribunal receives the record a case file number is officially assigned, allowing anyone interested to track the status through this link http://elto.gov.on.ca/tribunals/lpat/e-status/.
About the appeal process
This will be our first experience under the new legislation. Based on the LPAT’s Rules of practice and procedure, we expect that the next steps will include the following:
Preliminary Screening of Notice of Appeal – the LPAT will undertake a screening to make a preliminary determination of the validity of the notice of appeal and will advise the appellant and the municipality of the result of this screening process. If the LPAT determines that the appellant has failed to disclose the information outlined below in their appeal documents, the LPAT has an obligation to dismiss the appeal:
First, how the existing provisions of the zoning bylaw are inconsistent the Provincial Policy Statement (PPS) and fail to conform with the Official Plan; and
Second, how the requested application is consistent with the PPS and conforms with the Official Plan.
If the appeal is valid, the Appellant shall file 3 copies of an appeal record and case synopsis with the LPAT Registrar and serve one copy to the municipality (within 20 days of notice that the appeal is valid).
Within 10 days of receipt of the Appellant’s appeal record and case synopsis, the municipality shall advise the LPAT in writing if they will respond. If so, the response must be provided within 20 days of receipt of the appeal record and may include a responding appeal record or responding case synopsis.
A mandatory case management conference will be held as directed by the LPAT.
If a person, other than the Appellant and the municipality, wishes to participate in the appeal, a written submission must be filed with the Registrar at least 30 days before the date of the case management conference. This submission is required to provide a number of items. **For anyone in this position, I would strongly recommend reaching out to the LPASC (information provided at the end of this blog post) now to ensure you provide the correct information to the LPAT within the required timelines.
A Tribunal Order will be issued after the case management conference that may decide a number of items including procedural directions for future hearings (which may be held in writing, electronically, or in person).
There are a number of different routes that may happen following this last point, so I can’t speculate about the rest of the process. Ultimately, if the LPAT determines that the Council’s decision to refuse the application does not meet the tests, the LPAT will refer the decision back to Council for reconsideration. Council would then have 90 days to reconsider and, potentially, make a new decision. The new decision can then be appealed in the same way that the original decision was, except there is no referral back to Council the second time around
One additional item to note is that the OMB previously did not have any timelines they needed to meet in rendering a decision on appeals. The LPAT is required to render decision on this matter within 10 months of validating the appeal.
Bill 139 has required the creation of a new, independent body called the Local Planning Appeal Support Centre (LPASC) to provide free information on land use planning, guidance on LPAT procedures, advice or representation. The LPASC is funded by the Province with a head office in Toronto. If you need advice related to this appeal, or any appeals of a planning decision, I would suggest reaching out to the LPASC:
Have questions about the LPAT process? Don’t hesitate to connect with me via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 613 546-4291 ext. 3252.