News Release

Ontario Modernizes Municipal Legislation

May 30, 2017

Communities to Benefit from Updated Municipal Rules

Today, Ontario passed legislation to empower municipalities to be more open, accountable and flexible in responding to the needs of residents.

The Modernizing Ontario’s Municipal Legislation Act amends the Municipal Act, the City of Toronto Act and the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act. The changes will:

  • Increase fairness and reduce barriers for women and parents elected to municipal governments and school boards by allowing time off for pregnancy or parental leave
  • Provide broader municipal investment powers to eligible municipalities that may help raise more revenue to improve local infrastructure
  • Enhance local government accountability and integrity across the province by requiring municipalities to have a code of conduct for members of municipal councils and local boards
  • Ensure the public and municipal councillors have access to integrity commissioners with a broadened role related to conflicts of interest and municipal codes of conduct.

Many of the changes being made with the passage of this legislation are based on feedback from municipalities, the public and other organizations during Municipal Legislation Review consultations in 2015.

Supporting the province’s municipalities is part of Ontario’s plan to create jobs, grow our economy and help people in their everyday lives.



  • The government is required by legislation to review the Municipal Act and City of Toronto Act every five years.
  • Ontario reviewed the Municipal Act and City of Toronto Act at the same time, along with the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act, to address and incorporate broader themes of accountability and transparency into the review.
  • There are 444 municipalities in Ontario.





“These changes will help strengthen communities across Ontario. By providing the tools to address their changing needs, we will ensure local governments will continue to evolve for the people they serve.”
— Bill Mauro, Minister of Municipal Affairs


“This legislation will help those serving our communities spend more time caring for the newest members of their families. These changes will not only make things easier for people currently on municipal councils and school boards in the province, but they will hopefully encourage more parents to participate in local politics.”
— Daiene Vernile, Member of Provincial Parliament, Kitchener-Centre



Conrad Spezowka

Mark Cripps
Minister’s Office

Ministry of Municipal Affairs