THE LOCAL PLANNING APPEAL TRIBUNAL – SHAPING YOUR COMMUNITY
The Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (“LPAT”) is an independent administrative tribunal responsible for hearing appeals on a variety of contentious municipal matters. LPAT was formerly known as the Ontario Municipal Board (“OMB”) which operated as an independent adjudicative tribunal conducting hearings on land use planning issues and a variety of other matters.
LPAT is part of the Environment and Land Division of Tribunals Ontario (“ELD”), which was established in 2019 and brings together the clusters of administrative bodies reporting to the Ministry of the Attorney General. LPAT currently operates under its enabling legislation, the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal Act (the “Act”). The Act and the Statutory Powers and Procedure Act (“SPPA”) establishe LPAT’s powers and authorize LPAT to enact its own practice and procedures.
LPAT hears administrative appeals in relation to a wide range of land use issues as well as heritage conservation and municipal governance. When people disagree on how their communities should develop or change, this can lead to disputes over land use planning issues, such as where industry should be located, where roads and transit should be built, or how to protect forests and farmlands. When these disputes within communities or with municipal councils cannot be settled or result in a party being aggrieved by a decision, LPAT serves as an avenue to resolve those disputes and appeal contentious decisions.
APPEALING TO LPAT
Appeals that come before LPAT are identified through policies falling under the Planning Act, Aggregate Resources Act, Ontario Heritage Act, Municipal Act, Development Charges Act, Consolidated Hearings Act, Environmental Assessment Act and Expropriations Act.
In most cases, appeals must be made no later than 20-days after the day the council/planning board or approval authority gives its notice of decision on the planning proposal. Appeals are generally made to the counsel, planning board or approval authority that made the decision at issue and the decision maker is thereafter required to send notice of the appeal to LPAT within 15-days.
LPAT has the power to dismiss an appeal if the person or entity that launches an appeal has not made oral and/or written submissions before a decision. This means that if you do not share your views, either by oral presentation or written submissions at a public meeting or by written submission prior to a respective council’s decision on official planning zoning bylaw amendments, or plans of subdivision, you do not qualify to appeal such matters to the LPAT.
LIMITS ON APPEALS
Under the Planning Act, there are specific matters that cannot be appealed to LPAT. Generally, there are no appeals for matters related to:
Provincial decisions on official plans and major official plan updates where the Minister is the approval authority under section 26 of the Planning Act;
Refusals or failure of a municipality to make a decision within 210 days (commonly known as a “non-decision”) on proposed amendments to alter the boundary of an “area of settlement” or establish a new “area of settlement”;
Refusals or non-decisions of a municipality on proposed amendments that would remove land from an “area of employment” if appropriate official plan policies are in place;
Official plan policies and zoning bylaw provisions authorizing residential second units (e.g., basement apartments, accessory units);
Official plan policies and zoning bylaw provisions that relate to inclusionary zoning;
Non-decisions on adopted lower-tier official plans and updates if the appropriate upper-tier municipality states it does not conform with the upper-tier official plan;
Initial passing of a municipal interim control bylaw; and
Official plan policies and zoning bylaw provisions that designate and zone lands identified as a Protected Major Transit Station Area to accommodate transit-supportive densities.1
COSTS OF AN APPEAL
Generally, the fees associated with filing an appeal with LPAT are $300.00 per person/per appeal.2 Other fees for disbursements are also involved, including fees for obtaining certified copies of LPAT’s decision.
HOW CHAND & CO. CAN HELP
Chand & Co. is a boutique law firm at the forefront of the administrative and regulatory field, with offices in Toronto and Ottawa. The lawyers at Chand & Co. have a vast amount of experience representing individuals and businesses appealing to various appeal bodies and tribunals, including LPAT and its predecessor the OMB. If you are affected by a planning decision or a person or business aggrieved by decisions made in your community, call us today at 416.583.2377 and let our expertise work for you.
Toronto: (416) 583-2377 — 330 Bay St., Suite 500; Toronto, Ontario; M4H 2S8
Ottawa: (613) 454-8270 — 200 Elgin St., Suite 704; Ottawa, Ontario: K2P 1L5
Windsor: (519( 916-0529 — 75 Riverside Drive E., Unit 101A; Windsor, Ontario: N9A 2S4