TORONTO – The Ontario government has announced a new $45-million Streamline Development Approval Fund to help Ontario’s large municipalities improve systems for managing and approving housing applications.
Premier Doug Ford and Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing Steve Clark made the announcement Jan. 19 at a virtual meeting with big city mayors and regional chairs to discuss the co-ordination of efforts to increase the supply of homes across the province.
Examples of streamlining given included improving online systems to make it easier for applicants to navigate the development approvals process, manage their applications and receive status updates.
“Young families, seniors and all hardworking Ontarians are desperate for housing that meets their needs and budget,” said Ford. “At a time when our province is growing, our government will continue to use every tool we have to help municipalities get more homes built faster to help more families realize the dream of home ownership.”
The government also announced $8 million in funding through the Audit and Accountability Fund to help large urban municipalities identify potential savings and efficiencies through third-party reviews to further upgrade the municipal approvals system.
In addition, the government announced it is committed to work with the municipal sector to develop a data standard for planning and development applications to help accelerate approval timelines. The initiative is part of the Ontario Data Authority initiative, aimed at accelerating Ontario’s economic and social growth through improved data sharing.
The government will participate in the Rural Housing Affordability Roundtable with rural, remote and northern municipalities on Jan. 23.