Hamilton Re-implements Citizen Planning Appeal Deadlines During COVID Emergency

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Joey Coleman/The Public Record

The City of Hamilton is re-implementing statutory deadlines for citizens and affected parties to file appeals of City Council Planning Act decisions.

The Province of Ontario suspended all statutory deadlines as part of Provincial COVID State of Emergency, and the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal is not conducting any contested hearings until further notice.

On April 15, the Province granted municipalities the power to re-institute Planning Act statutory deadlines for filing appeals based upon local circumstances.

Hamilton, along with other municipalities such as Mississauga, moved quickly to re-establish appeal deadlines.

Other municipalities implemented the regulation with public notice in their Council agendas during the first week of May. Hamilton City Council did not meet the first week of May.

Planning Act notices were sent to households in various parts of Hamilton notifying residents they have 20 days to file their appeal of the planning decision which the notice is issued for.

Appellants must file their appeals by courier, mail, or by dropping at City Hall. The packages must include certified cheque or bank draft to pay the processing fee.

Other municipalities, in their public notices re-instating the deadlines, state the purpose is to prevent a backlog of planning appeals to be processed once the COVID Provincial State of Emergency ends and the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal begins processing appeals again.

At this time, May 17, the LPAT states mailed filings to the Tribunal “will experience processing delays”.

While citizens and interested parties are required to meet filing deadlines, the City continues to be except from appeal processing timelines.

The LPAT is presently only conducting settlement hearings, approving agreements between parties. No timeline has yet been announced for contested hearings

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First published: May 19, 2020
Last edited: May 19, 2020
Author: Joey Coleman

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