Role of the Province

The Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing (MMAH) administers the legislation that governs BIAsMMAH encourages municipalities to work with BIAs by having a dialogue about the responsibilities of the BIAs, and also to devise solutions that work best in each area.


The Province provides support for BIAs in Ontario in a variety of ways.

The Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing is responsible for administering the legislation and the policy concerning BIAs. The Ministry responds to inquiries from municipalities, the public, BIAs, and BIA Associations. MMAH has produced the BIA Handbook every few years, and now has made it available online.

The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs ( OMAFRA) also works to support rural BIAs through economic development advisors. OMAFRA has a number of programs to assist rural BIAs including the Business Retention and Expansion program (BR+E) and the Rural Economic Development program.

MMAH and OMAFRA each have a staff member who sits on the Ontario Business Improvement Area Association (OBIAA) Board.