From the Spring 2018 Issue
Adapting to New Legislation
CMRAO begins to issue provincial licences
The Condominium Management Regulatory Authority of Ontario (CMRAO) has begun to issue licences for individual condominium managers and for management companies. We understand that the licences issued at this time reflect the applications received in November.
To toke or not to toke – the new Cannabis Act
As most Ontarians know by now, the federal Cannabis Act, is scheduled to take effect on July 1, 2018. This has left many provinces, Ontario included, with a tight deadline to implement appropriate legislation.
In December 2017, the Ontario legislature passed comprehensive legislation that will ensure the province is ready to regulate the lawful use, sale and distribution of recreational cannabis in the province.
Various ministries including the Ministry of the Attorney General (MAG) and the Ministry of Finance posted their proposed regulations to Ontario’s regulatory registry for public comment. Public commenting is now closed.
Additional regulatory proposals related to the Smoke- Free Ontario Act, 2017, and road safety measures, including impaired driving, have been separately posted on the Regulatory Registry for feedback.
More information on Ontario’s approach to federal cannabis legalization is available at: https://www.ontario.ca/cannabis.
Government to explore Condominium Act changes for electric vehicle chargers
Late in 2017, the Government of Ontario announced proposed changes to the Condominium Act, 1998 that would explore options for condominiums to install electric chargers. The goal is to promote the sale of electric cars and lower emissions as one part of the government’s Climate Change Action Plan.
Several initiatives, including rebates, are offered to encourage the adoption of electric vehicles through the province’s Electric Vehicle Incentive Program.
Changes to Employment Standards Act affect corporations
Condominium managers and their boards of directors should be aware that changes to the Employment Standards Act (ESA) affect condominium corporations, specifically if the corporation has employees. Ontarians are well aware that the minimum wage increased to $14 per hour effective January 1, 2018 with a further increase to $15 per hour expected on January 1, 2019.
Other changes to the ESA have taken place. Employees are now entitled to three week of paid vacation (formerly two weeks) after five years of service. Employers are subject to increased penalties for misclassifying employees as independent contractors. Holiday pay must be calculated using a new formula based on the employee’s average earnings during the pay period before the holiday.
Additionally, changes were made to protected leaves of absence for employees. These leaves include: extended pregnancy and parental leave; extended family medical leave; critically ill family member; disappearance and/or death of a child that is crime related; sexual and domestic violence. and an increase in paid vacation to three weeks after five years of service.
Further changes will take effect on April 1, 2018. Part-time, seasonal or temporary workers must be paid the same pay as a full-time employee doing the same work. This change encourages wage parity.
If your corporation is an employer and you are affected by these changes to the ESA, you should review and update your human resources practices and procedures.
Province plans elevator availability legislation
The Ontario Government is planning to pass elevator availability legislation in the spring of this year. The planned legislation is a result of recommendations written by retired justice Douglas Cunningham, and presented in his 57-page report on elevator reliability. The report was commissioned by the provincial safety regulator, Technical Standards and Safety Authority (TSSA), at the request of the Ontario government.
The report notes that condominiums experience the most frequent availability problems.
The TSSA report stemmed from MPP Han Dong’s private member’s bill introduced in April 2017. At the same time an industry report by the National Elevator and Escalator Association (NEEA) was released in late January.
As always, we encourage readers to bookmark acmo.org/news and follow ACMO on social media where we will keep you up to date on all the happenings that affect condominium communities across Ontario.