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Committee of Adjustment Process

The Committee of Adjustment is made up of seven members appointed by City Council, including five resident members and two Councillor members.  This committee can give permission for changes to the zoning rules, allow changes to existing legal non-conforming uses, and approve a Consent application to allow for the creation of a new lot from a larger property. 

The Committee's approval is also needed for long-term agreements on land, like leases, easements or mortgages lasting more than 21 years. 

The Committee meets monthly at City Hall. 

Meeting date Application cut-off
Jan. 22, 2024 Dec. 4, 2024
Feb. 26, 2024 Jan. 8, 2024
March 18, 2024 Jan. 29, 2024
April 15, 2024 Feb. 26, 2024
May 13, 2024 March 25, 2024
June 17, 2024 April 29, 2024
July 15, 2024 May 27, 2024
Aug. 19, 2024 July 2, 2024
Sept. 16, 2024 July 29, 2024
Oct. 21, 2024 Sept. 3, 2024
Nov. 18, 2024 Sept. 30, 2024
Dec. 16, 2024 Oct. 28, 2024

Applications for consent

The Planning Act requires permission to split a piece of land and create a new lot. This is known as land severance. It allows us to ensure that new lots follow planning rules laid out in the Official Plan and the Zoning Bylaws. 

You might need consent for several reasons, including: 

  • Splitting land for sale
  • Registering or removing a mortgage on part of a property 
  • Registering a lease lasting 21 years or more
  • Establishing easements for rights-of-way
  • Adjusting the boundaries of existing parcels to make them bigger or smaller

If you want to split your property for selling it, getting a mortgage, or leasing it for more than 21 years, you need to ask for permission. This permission process is often called "consent to sever”. 

Applications for minor variance 

A minor variance is when you ask for a small change to the zoning rules. If approved, it allows you to get a building permit even if your property does not exactly match the regulations in the Zoning Bylaw. There are four tests for a minor variance under the Planning Act: 

    • Is the application minor? 
    • Is the application desirable for the appropriate development of the lands in question? 
    • Does the application conform to the general intent of the Zoning Bylaw? 
    • Does the application conform to the general intent of the Official Plan?  

An application must pass all four tests to be considered a minor variance. 

Committee of Adjustment application process

The Committee of Adjustment process takes around 60 to 90 days from when you apply to Planning Services. 

All applications must be submitted online through DASH

Before applying for a Minor Variance or Consent, applicants must apply for a pre-application and meet with Planning Services staff to review application details. 

During pre-application meetings, you will meet with City staff who will identify necessary approvals, supporting studies, drawings, and other submission requirements. We hold pre-application meetings virtually or in person at 1211 John Counter Boulevard. 

The assigned planner will confirm requirements and fees in the Pre-Application Report provided after the meeting. 

You are required to pay application fees for each Minor Variance and Consent application along with your application submission. If significant changes are made to the application during processing, and it is required to be re-evaluated by technical staff, then additional fees may apply. 

We send Minor Variance and Consent applications to different City departments and outside organizations for review. This may include Building Services, Engineering Services, Transportation Services, and Utilities Kingston. If your proposal is near wetlands, watercourses or environmentally sensitive lands, we may also send it to the Cataraqui Region Conservation Authority for their input.

Before the public meeting, we will send a notice to property owners within 60 metres of the property for which the Minor Variance or Consent is proposed. This notice includes details about the application and the date and time of the Committee of Adjustment meeting. The public meeting notice period is as follows: 

  • 14 days before the meeting for Consent applications
  • 10 days before the meeting for Minor Variance applications

We will also provide signs to you to post on your property. Failure to post the sign may result in delays in your application process or the cancellation of scheduled public meetings. 

The committee members and our planning staff will typically conduct site inspections. 

The Committee meets monthly at City Hall. During the meeting, you or your agent present the proposed application, staff may offer information and Committee members may ask questions. The public can submit comments in writing or attend the meeting and provide oral comments.  

At the meeting, the Committee receives a recommendation report from staff. If the report recommends approval of the application, any conditions to the approval will be included. 

The decisions are announced at the meeting and sent in writing to the applicant and to anyone who requested the decision within 10 days.  

The decisions made by the Committee of Adjustment can only be challenged by the applicant, the Minister, or certain people or groups as noted in the Planning Act. 

The City of Kingston acknowledges that we are on the traditional homeland of the Anishinaabe, Haudenosaunee and the Huron-Wendat, and thanks these nations for their care and stewardship over this shared land.

Today, the City is committed to working with Indigenous peoples and all residents to pursue a united path of reconciliation.

Learn more about the City's reconciliation initiatives.

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