April 18, 2018
Official Plan amendment appeal settled today
The settlement preserves OPA 197’s ground-breaking new policies to control landfill development in the County
Following three days of testimony by County witnesses, the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal approved a settlement reached today on the Walker Environmental Group (WEG) appeal of OPA 197.
UPDATE APRIL 26, 2018: The modified version of OPA 197 with changes marked has been received from the Tribunal. Review the modified version
The settlement preserves the groundbreaking elements of OPA 197, including maintaining (1) policies which discourage the establishment of new landfills within the County that are not primarily intended to meet the waste disposal needs of County residents and businesses, and (2) a rigorous new set of planning criteria for evaluating proposals for new landfills seeking to locate in the County.
The settlement also involved a clarification that the already approved EA Terms of Reference govern the siting requirements for the WEG landfill proposal, avoiding a likely Tribunal concern about conflict between the provincial environmental assessment approval process and County policies.The tougher siting policies remain in the Plan, and the revised policies provide more clarity on how future applications must integrate these tougher County siting criteria within the provincial EA approval process.
Walker Environmental Group had challenged all of the key new policies of OPA 197 related to landfill approvals through an appeal to the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (formerly the Ontario Municipal Board). The appealed sections of OPA 197 as modified and approved by the Local Planning Appeal Tribual can be viewed at this link, or downloaded by clicking on the attached PDF file below.
OPA 197 confirms Oxford County’s place as a provincial leader with respect to solid waste reduction and minimization and waste disposal avoidance. In particular, the new policies to discourage large landfills which do not primarily serve County needs, and the rigorous criteria for review of landfill proposals, are unique among Ontario municipalities and are among the most robust in the province in providing the municipality with greater control over waste management issues moving forward.
The County extends its appreciation to the community for its support and presentations as part of the Tribunal process.
About Oxford County
Located in the heart of southwestern Ontario at the crossroads of Highways 401 and 403, Oxford County has a population of approximately 114,000 people across eight area municipalities that are “growing stronger together.” As a partnership-oriented, two-tier municipal government, Oxford County is emerging as a leader in sustainable growth through the Future Oxford Community Sustainability Plan and County Council’s commitment to achieving 100% renewable energy, becoming a zero waste community, and working towards zero poverty. Situated in one of Ontario’s richest areas for farmland, agriculture is a key industry that serves as a springboard for some of the sustainable industries that are steadily diversifying the local economy. Oxford County offers a thriving local arts, culture and culinary community, as well as conservation parks, natural areas and more than 100 kilometres of scenic trails. The Oxford County Administration Building is located in Woodstock, Ontario. Visit www.oxfordcounty.ca or follow our social media sites at www.oxfordcounty.ca/social. Oxford County’s Strategic Plan is at oxfordcounty.ca/strategicplan.
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