Official Plans are considered to be a major vehicle for implementation of Provincial policies, such as the Provincial Policy Statement and Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe. The Official Plan is implemented through zoning, among other tools. The implementing Zoning By-law will contain specific provisions to guide development, such as bulk, height, massing, setbacks and detailed permitted uses. Implementation tools for the Official Plan include policies for complete applications, pre-consultation requirements, required studies, holding provisions, site plan control and others.
Provincial & County Policy
The Provincial Policy Statement (PPS) and the County of Simcoe Official Plan Policies provide direction on specific issues. The Township Official Plan policies must conform to the PPS and County Official Plan, which set out the following policies:
Complete Applications & Required Studies
The County of Simcoe Official Plan contains implementation policies, which provide that for a development application to be considered complete in accordance with Section 22 or 51 of the Planning Act, certain studies may be required, such as an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), Servicing Feasibility Study, Agricultural Assessment, Architectural/Cultural Heritage Report, or others.
Existing Policy & Legislation
Provincial Policy Statement 2014
Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, 2017
County of Simcoe Official Plan, 2016
Current Township Policies
Section E1 of the current Official Plan contains Implementation tools. Current Official Plan policies require:
That an applicant must attend a pre-consultation meeting in advance of submitting an application under the Planning Act. An application must be deemed to be a complete application. Studies, reports and plans may be required as part of a complete application, such as Archaeological Assessments, Hydrogeological Studies and Traffic Impact Studies.
That the Township may pass temporary use by-laws, which must authorize the use for a specific time period up to three years.
That the Township may utilize Holding Provisions to ensure the appropriate phasing of development, servicing and development agreements.
That all areas of the Township are designated as proposed Site Plan Control areas.
That the Township will adhere to the provisions of the County of Simcoe’s tree cutting by-law. The Township will consider enacting a topsoil preservation and other similar by-laws to regulate the landscape.
What changes would you like to see?
What studies should be required as part of a Planning application, beyond the prescribed information outlined in the Planning Act? Should pre-consultation meetings be required as part of a complete application for development? What types of development need additional studies?
What do you think can be done to make the Official Plan and Zoning By-law more usable and accessible for the public, agencies, and the development industry? For example, should diagrams be used for illustrative purposes? How can the planning application process be improved?
Do you think a Community Planning Permit System (CPPS) – formerly known as Development Permit System (DPS) – would streamline planning applications? Are there areas where a CPPS would be helpful, such as along shoreline areas?
Should the Township consider implementation approaches including: policies for Secondary Plans, policies for monitoring the implementation and effectiveness of Official Plan policies, policies for legal non-conforming uses, policies for Committee of Adjustment/consents, and policies for potentially required studies (i.e. natural heritage impact evaluation/EIS, heritage impact assessment, traffic impact study, hydrogeological study, subwatershed study, urban design briefs, etc.)
Please provide any other comments you may have for consideration in the development of new policies.