Some changes are coming to the Winnipeg Act and the Our Winnipeg 2045 plan as directed by the Province of Manitoba that are meant to have a positive impact on the development process in our city and Capital Region.
First, let's discuss Bill 37 which was proclaimed on October 30, 2021. The Province formally advised that the legislation will apply to any development application received after that date. Eligible applications have now started to appear at Community Committee so I feel it is vital to share with you how the process will change and what new options you will have if opposition or support.
The following is a summary of how Bill 37 will apply to development applications going forward:
- The rules governing the process to be followed at hearings contained in the Development Procedures by-law and the Procedure by-law still apply.
- Draft by-laws will now accompany the following types of development applications for consideration by the hearing body:
• Rezoning (DAZ)
• Subdivision and rezoning (DASZ)
• Secondary Plan and Secondary Plan Amendments (SP and SPA)
- SPC, EPC and Council will continue to consider hearing body recommendations as per the Development Procedures by-law (note: SPC and EPC may still act as the hearing body for certain applications).
- If a committee of council proposes any changes to the draft by-law, a second hearing may be required to consider representation with regards to the proposed change. This only applies to amendments that could alter the text or map contained in the draft by-law.
- Council will now give first reading to zoning by-laws or secondary plan by-laws at the same meeting in which the recommendation on the application is considered. Second and Third reading will come at a later meeting.
- After first reading of a zoning by-law or secondary plan by-law, residents who appeared/made submissions at the hearing may have an additional right to file objections. If the threshold of sufficient objections is met, the matter will be referred to the Municipal Board. Sufficient objections are defined as 25 voters or 50% of the total number of registered owners of land within 100 meters of the subject property (refer to section 236.1 of the Charter).
- The owner of a subject property now has a number of additional rights of appeal to the Municipal Board which includes the right to appeal the rejection as well as conditions imposed on the approval of certain development applications (refer to section 282.1(1) of the Charter).
- Applicants now have the right to appeal to the Municipal Board if their application is not decided on within a certain timeframe (refer to section 282.2(1) of the Charter). Committees still retain the right to adjourn certain matters but must be aware that an adjournment (or multiple adjournments) may compromise the timeframe for approval set out in the Charter; should the timeframe be exceeded, an applicant may consider their application to be rejected and may appeal the rejection to the Municipal Board.
- A matter before the Municipal Board must be considered at a hearing within 120 days after receiving the appeal. The Municipal Board then has 60 days to make its decision and submit its decision to Council.
- Upon receipt of a decision from the Municipal Board, Council must not pass a proposed zoning or secondary plan by-law unless the proposed by-law conforms to the recommendation that the Board has made.
The Province of Manitoba has also official advised the City of Winnipeg that they have reviewed the Our Winnipeg Plan 2045. The review resulted in the Province requesting that the city make changes to Our Winnipeg before it receives approval and is added to the Winnipeg Charter.
Below is the letter from the Minister Responsible that was sent to the Public Service and the to all members of City Council.