Changes to Conservation Act officially pass

Brian Horner – General Manager, Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (photo by Bob Montgomery)
Conservation Ontario and conservation authorities throughout the Province were united in their opposition to changes to the Conservation Act being proposed by the Province.

Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority General Manager, Brian Horner, says they were specifically concerned about section six, which would change some of the responsibilities of conservation authorities. Horner says the legislation has now passed, despite their concerns and with a minimum of consultation. Horner says the next steps will be the developing of the regulations by the Province on how to implement the legislation.

“The next steps will be the developing of the regulations by the Province on how to implement the legislation. And we hope that the Province consults with us and that we’re involved in those regulations.”

He says, as it now stands, there is the potential in the planning part of it that is of some concern.

“The way it is now, there’s a potential in the planning part of it that, in our area, a subdivision could make it through planning and to subdivision approval without any regard for hazards and then come to us where we’re going to be forced to issue a permit.”

Horner adds, their primary mission is to keep people out of high flood-prone areas and that isn’t changing.