Legislative Update – May 7, 2019

2019 5/7 | Connects Page, Education Finance, Education Policy, Labour Relations, Provincial Updates

Image - Ontario LegislatureBill 100, Protecting What Matters Most Act (Budget Measures)

This bill was introduced on April 11, 2019, by Minister of Finance Vic Fedeli. This is the government’s budget implementation omnibus legislation and includes 61 schedules – changes to various Acts. There are two amendments to the Schedule 20 – Education Act. The first amendment is housekeeping in nature and supports plans for the ministry’s revised Reciprocal Education Approach. This new term is to come into effect September 1, 2019, and will replace the former separate terms of Education Services (Tuition) Agreements and Reverse Tuition Agreements. OPSBA’s Indigenous Trustees’ Council and staff have participated in the Minister’s Working Group that examined current agreement language. The second amendment is to give the Minister of Education the authority to approve and authorize in-year deficits. This is currently in the Education Act and would become a regulation.

Current Status: This legislation was time allocated on May 1 and on May 2, it was referred to the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs. Public hearings will occur on Tuesday, May 7, and Wednesday, May 8, 2019. Written submissions are due Thursday, May 9 by 6 p.m. These can be sent to the clerk Timothy Bryan at: comm-financeaffairs@ola.org. OPSBA will send in a brief submission regarding the two Education Act amendments.

OPSBA Budget Highlights

OPSBA’s GSN overview

Bill 107, Getting Ontario Moving Act (Transportation Statute Law Amendment), 2019

This bill was introduced on May 2, 2019, by Minister of Transportation Jeff Yurek and proposes the ability for municipalities to impose fines on those drivers that drive past school buses with their stop-arms out and drivers speeding near schools. This follows the announcement last week in which the government said it was going to allow evidence from school bus stop arm cameras to be used in court.

Bill 108, More Homes, More Choice Act, 2019

This legislation was introduced on May 2, 2019, by Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing Steve Clark. Accompanying the bill was the More Homes, More Choice: Ontario’s Housing Supply Action Plan which included the following regarding Education Development Charges (EDCs):

“When a board has more students than it has school space to accommodate them, it can levy education development charges on new development. These fees are used to acquire sites to help accommodate children from new developments, so they can learn close to home.  After consulting with stakeholders, we’re proposing changes to the Education Development Charge framework to:

  • Allow only modest increases in education development charges to help make housing more affordable; and
  • Allow for innovative and lower-cost alternatives to site acquisition.”

OPSBA will follow up with the Ministry of Education about the next steps for this piece of the Action Plan, which is to include engagement with the sector.

Bill 48, Safe and Supportive Classrooms Act

On May 3, OPSBA provided a submission to the Ministry of Education’s consultation on their draft PPM regarding School Board Polices on Service Animals. The submission was prepared with feedback and input from school board staff with expertise in the area of service animals. The Education Program Work Team and the Policy Development Work Team also had an opportunity to review the documents and provide feedback.

Ontario Autism Program (OAP) Public Consultations

On May 1, 2019, Minister of Children, Community and Social Services Lisa MacLeod announced details for the government’s plans for their public consultations regarding the Ontario Autism Program (OAP). The government’s consultations will occur during the month of May and include telephone town halls, an online survey and an opportunity for individuals to email their additional information or comments.

Click here for the consultation details, including the dates of the telephone town halls. If you wish to participate in the consultation, we encourage you to read our February 26, 2019 letter to the Minister of Education and the Minister of Children, Community and Social Services about the OAP changes and our March 11, 2019, statement on Autism Spectrum Disorder. OPSBA will also be planning to respond to the consultation.

Other Information