Oakville Council passes new Development Charges By-law

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GavelOn Monday night, Oakville Council approved the Development Charges (DC) Background study and passed revised DC By-law 2013-020 to ensure Oakville continues to recover a significant share of costs associated with growth-related services and infrastructure. According to the study findings, the net costs required from DC charges over the next five years to finance planned residential and non-residential growth infrastructure exceeds $208 million.

“We’re controlling growth. Our philosophy is that growth should pay its way and not be financed by taxpayers,” Oakville Mayor Rob Burton said. “The new by-law will allow us to effectively fund growth at a managed pace over the next 20 years.”

Consistent with the province’s Places to Grow legislation, Oakville’s population is expected to grow to approximately 246,000 residents by 2031. DCs provide a considerable funding source to build the infrastructure required to accommodate this anticipated growth. DCs are applied to construction of new residential and industrial/commercial properties, and are charged to developers to pay for town capital projects that service new growth including roads, transit, sidewalks and streetlights.

Over the past year, town staff worked closely with consultant Watson and Associates Economists Ltd. and engaged development industry representatives to develop a by-law that meets Oakville’s future infrastructure needs.

Urban SprawlOakville’s growth management strategy is guided by the town’s Livable Oakville Official Plan and Halton’s Regional Official Plan. Both levels of government are committed to ensuring that growth pays for itself to the extent allowable under the Development Charges Act, 1997, minimizing the impact on existing taxpayers.

The Act requires that a new by-law is enacted within five years of the passing of the previous by-law. Oakville’s new by-law is effective March 5, 2013. Oakville’s DC rates are competitive to other Greater Toronto Area municipalities including Vaughan, Markham, Milton and Brampton.

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