From the Provincial Office of OSSTF
NEW BILLS INTRODUCED
BILL 136, TRANSPORTATION SYSTEMS IMPROVEMENT ADVISORY COMMITTEE ACT
Included in the proposals in PC MPP Gila Martow’s (Thornhill) bill is the launching of an inquiry into whether the existing accessible parking system for people with disabilities is effective.
BILL 137, STOP THE CALLS ACT
Liberal MPP Yvan Baker’s (Etobicoke Centre) bill would ban telemarketing calls for certain products (as selected by the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services) and impose fines of up to $25,000 for offenders.
BILL 138, TRANSPARENCY IN GOVERNMENT BILLS ACT
PC MPP Michael Harris’ (Kitchener—Conestoga) bill would require government bills to include a statement detailing the legislation’s policy goals and financial costs that the bill would have on the government, municipalities, the public and any affected industries or businesses.
BILL 139, BUILDING BETTER COMMUNITIES AND CONSERVING WATERSHEDS ACT
Municipal Affairs Minister Bill Mauro’s (Thunder Bay—Atikokan) bill sets up a Local Planning Appeal Tribunal to replace the Ontario Municipal Board. The bill would also modernize the provincial government’s conservation of watersheds.
BILL 140, CITY OF OTTAWA AMENDMENT ACT (BILINGUALISM)
Liberal MPP Nathalie Des Rosiers’ (Ottawa—Vanier) bill restates and reinforces the City of Ottawa’s bilingualism bylaw.
BILL 141, SEWAGE BYPASS REPORTING ACT
PC MPP Sylvia Jones’ (Dufferin—Caledon) bill would require the reporting of certain information to the provincial government in cases where sewage is diverted into waters that may impair their quality.
BILL 142, CONSTRUCTION LIEN AMENDMENT ACT
Attorney General Yasir Naqvi’s (Ottawa Centre) bill would require prompt payment rules for the construction industry. The bill would also include other measures to speed up and simplify the dispute resolution process.
BILL 143, ONTARIO FORESTRY INDUSTRY REVITALIZATION ACT (HEIGHT OF WOOD FRAME BUILDINGS)
PC MPP Vic Fedeli’s (Nipissing) bill would provide that the building code shall not prohibit a building that is 12 storeys or less in building height from being of wood frame construction.
BILL 144, REAL RENT CONTROL ACT
NDP MPP Peter Tabuns’ (Toronto—Danforth) bill seeks to strengthen the rights of tenants, including protection from arbitrary rent payment increases.
BILL 145, WSIB COVERAGE FOR WORKERS IN RESIDENTIAL CARE FACILITIES AND GROUP HOMES ACT
Liberal MPP John Fraser’s (Ottawa South) bill would bring employees of residential care facilities and group homes under Workers’ Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) coverage.
BILL 146, TRANSPARENCY IN GAS PRICING ACT
PC MPP Monte McNaughton’s (Lambton–Kent—Middlesex) bill would require Union Gas and Enbridge to include the cost of the cap-and-trade program on consumer bills.
BILL 147, SAFE NIGHT OUT ACT
NDP MPP Peggy Sattler’s (London West) bill would require that sexual violence and harassment prevention training be included in Smart Serve training for all managers, servers and bartenders employed in establishments where liquor is served.
BILL 148, FAIR WORKPLACES AND BETTER JOBS ACT
The Liberal government’s long-awaited reply to the “Changing Workplaces Review” was announced this week as Labour Minister Kevin Flynn’s (Oakville) bill increases the minimum wage to $15 by January 1, 2019. The Legislature voted unanimously for the bill at 1st Reading and, in a rare move, the bill was referred to the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs, which was given permission to meet over the summer to study the bill. Referral to Standing Committees usually occurs only after 2nd Reading.
BILLS REFERRED TO COMMITTEE
BILL 137, STOP THE CALLS ACT
Liberal MPP Yvan Baker’s (Etobicoke Centre) bill would ban telemarketing calls for certain products (as selected by the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services) and impose fines of up to $25,000 for offenders. Three days after its introduction, the bill passed 2nd Reading by voice vote and was referred to the Standing Committee on Regulations and Private Bills.
BILL 65, SAFER SCHOOL ZONES ACT
The Minister of Transportation, Steven Del Duca’s (Vaughan) bill passed with all-party support. Only former PC MPP Jack MacLaren (Carleton—Mississippi Mills) voted against the bill. The bill would amend the Highway Traffic Act to allow municipalities to set speed limits within their borders and allow the use of automated speed enforcement systems and red light camera systems.
BILL 68, MODERNIZING ONTARIO’S MUNICIPAL LEGISLATION ACT
Municipal Affairs Minister Bill Mauro’s (Thunder Bay—Atikokan) bill passed by a vote of 69-23 with NDP support. The bill aims to make local governments more open, flexible and accountable to the people they serve. In a nod to caucus colleague Daiene Vernile’s (Kitchener Centre) Bill 46, Municipal Statute Law Amendment Act (Councillor Pregnancy and Parental Leave), Mauro’s legislation includes allowing women and parents elected to municipal governments time off for pregnancy or parental leave. As well, Mauro proposes improving access to allow integrity commissioners to investigate complaints against municipal councillors. Mauro also wants to require municipalities to have a code of conduct for members of municipal councils and local boards. Finally, Mauro’s bill will ensures that heads of most regional councils be elected so that they are accountable to the voters they represent.
BILL 87, PROTECTING PATIENTS ACT
Health Minister Eric Hoskin’s (St. Paul’s) bill passed 3rd Reading with all-party support. Former PC MPP Jack MacLaren (Carleton—Mississippi Mills) was the only one to cast a dissenting vote. Hoskins wants to protect patients from sexual assault by expanding the list of sexual abuse acts that would result in the mandatory revocation of a health professional’s license. The bill also increases therapy options for patients who report physician abuse. As well, the bill will allow nurse practitioners to write certain prescriptions.
BILL 89, SUPPORTING CHILDREN, YOUTH AND FAMILIES ACT
Minister of Children and Youth Services Michael Coteau’s (Don Valley East) bill passed 3rd Reading with Liberal and NDP support. In his statement upon the bill’s passage, Coteau outlined the following:
· Raising the age of protection from 16 to 18 to increase protection services for more vulnerable youth in unsafe living conditions, to support their education and to reduce homelessness and human trafficking.
· Making services more inclusive and culturally appropriate for all children and youth, including Indigenous and Black children and youth, to ensure every child receives the best possible support.
· Putting a greater focus on early intervention, to help prevent children and families from reaching crisis situations at home.
· Improving accountability and oversight of service providers, including children’s aid societies and licensed residential service providers, so that children and youth receive safe, consistent and high-quality services across the province.
BILL 114, ANTI-RACISM ACT
The Minister Responsible for Anti-Racism, Michael Coteau (Don Valley East), saw his bill creating an Anti-Racism Directorate pass 3rd Reading by a voice vote. The bill will also allow the government the authority to collect race-based data on its policies and programs.
BILL 132, FAIR HYDRO ACT
Energy Minister Glenn Thibeault’s (Sudbury) bill passed 3rd Reading despite opposition from both the PCs and NDP. Thibeault’s bill will ultimately reduce hydro-electric rates by a total of 25 per cent.
BILL 134, BUDGET MEASURES ACT (HOUSING PRICE STABILITY AND ONTARIO SENIORS’ PUBLIC TRANSIT TAX CREDIT)
Finance Minister Charles Sousa’s (Mississauga South) budget bill passed with NDP support. The PCs voted against it. The budget bill would impose a 15 per cent Non-Resident Speculation Tax on real estate transactions in the Golden Horseshoe region retroactive to April 21, 2017. This part of the bill was proposed as a measure to cool the overheated Toronto housing market. As well, the bill will implement a 15 per cent seniors’ public transit discount effective July 1, 2017.
IN OTHER NEWS
PCs WIN SAULT STE. MARIE BY-ELECTION
The Progressive Conservatives easily claimed victory in the Sault Ste. Marie by-election to replace former Liberal Cabinet Minister David Orazietti. PC candidate Ross Romano captured 40 per cent of the vote. NDP candidate Joe Krmpotich received 33 per cent of the vote while Liberal Debbie Amarosa had 22 per cent of the vote.
While the third-place finish is another devastating blow to the Liberals’ chances of re-election in 2018, most Liberals hope that with the recent Hydro-electric rate cuts and increase in the minimum wage, the party can regain its support in time for a comeback victory. With most Liberals expecting to lose this by-election, it is unlikely any crescendo will build to see Premier Kathleen Wynne step aside prior to the general election.
MPP JACK MACLAREN AND PCs PART WAYS
Depending on whose version one accepts, MPP Jack MacLaren (Carleton—Mississippi Mills) either resigned or was ousted by PC Leader Patrick Brown. According to MacLaren, he had made up his mind to leave the Conservatives prior to Brown expelling him from caucus over remarks on French-language use in Ontario. MacLaren, a staunch right-winger, has joined the Trillium Party and will run for them in the next election.
THE LEGISLATURE WILL NOW BE RECESSED FOR THE SUMMER. IT WILL RESUME ON MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2017.