New subsection 34(184.108.40.206.1) changes and limits the basis for appeals in regard to a zoning amendment application where Council has failed to make a decision within the statutory time limits or has refused to approve the application.
Prior to Bill 139, subsection 34(11) simply required the filing of a notice of appeal, as the reason for the appeal was fact-based in that the appeal related to either a refusal of the request for amendment or a failure to make a decision within the statutory time limits. No other basis/reason was required.
As a result of new subsection 34(220.127.116.11.1), in addition to the factual pre-requisite of the a refusal or a failure to make a decision within the statutory time limits, the appeal can only be made on the following basis:
(a) that the existing part or parts of the zoning by-law that would be affected by the requested amendment:
is inconsistent with a policy statement issued under subsection 3(1),
fails to conform with or conflicts with a provincial plan, or
fails to conform with the applicable municipality’s official plan.
(b) the requested amendment:
is consistent with policy statements issued under subsection 3(1),
conforms with or does not conflict with provincial plans, and
conforms with the applicable municipality’s official plan.
The Bill 139 amendment means that there is no longer any permissible grounds of appeal which would allow a proposed zoning by-law amendment to be judged on its planning merits per se, that is, for instance, its consistency with the principles of good planning.