Letters & Submissions

Proposed Amendments to Minister’s Zoning Order Regulation (O. Reg.) Ontario Regulation 771/21

Mar 10, 2023

March 10, 2023

Municipal Services Office – Eastern Ontario
Ontario Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing
8 Estate Lane
Kingston, ON
K7M 9A8

Proposed Amendments to Minister’s Zoning Order Regulation (O. Reg.) Ontario Regulation 771/21

Dear Ministry,

The Christian Farmers Federation of Ontario (CFFO) is an Accredited Farm Organization representing the interests of over 4,000 farm families in Ontario who are called to the vocation of farming. CFFO policy promotes economically, socially, and environmentally sustainable farming, advocating that farmers receive fair return for their production and stewardship efforts.

The CFFO is concerned about the protection of productive agricultural land. This land is highly valuable as a source of food, as an economic driver and as a provider of environmental goods and services.

We are writing to state our objection to the proposed amendments to Ontario Regulation (O. Reg.) 771/21 (previously amended by O. Reg. 163/22 and O. Reg. 490/22) as posted in “Kawartha Lakes this Week” on February 9, 2023. This proposed amendment would add 202 hectares of land to the 250 hectares already under O. Reg. 771/21. It would further expand permitted uses to allow additional commercial uses.

The CFFO strongly objects to this proposed amendment because of the farmland loss that will result. This proposal nearly doubles the size of rezoned land, removing productive farmland that has been continuously farmed in living memory.

The farming community, along with many in the province, have expressed their concern over the potential of Minister’s Zoning Orders to increase farmland loss in the province. This is a clear example where productive farmland is being rezoned for development.

Ontario’s farmland is the foundation of the significant economic contributions of our overall agri-food sector which will continue to be important to a strong Ontario economy. Farmland and adjoining natural features together ensure environmental benefits and corridors for wildlife and water through the landscape. Productive farmland is vital to our food security, here in Ontario and globally. All these benefits are lost when farmland is permanently removed from production.

The local municipality, City of Kawartha Lakes, does not support this amendment and has clearly demonstrated that they already have a significant oversupply of lands designated for housing development.1 This land is not needed to meet local housing supply needs. Should this amendment go forward, it will be a gratuitous misuse of this provincial rezoning power.

The proposed amendment to Minister’s Zoning Order O. Reg. 771/21 will rezone currently productive farmland into development lands that are not necessary to meet the local housing demand. The CFFO calls on the Ontario government to reject the proposed amendment.

We thank you for your consideration of our concerns.


Ed Scharringa, President
Christian Farmers Federation of Ontario

Download PDF