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Municipal Franchises Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55

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current August 1, 2003 (e-Laws currency date)

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Municipal Franchises Act

R.S.O. 1990, CHAPTER M.55

Consolidation Period: From August 1, 2003 to the e-Laws currency date.

Last amendment: 2003, c.3, s.1.

Definitions

1. In this Act,

“franchise” includes any right or privilege to which this Act applies; (“concession”)

“gas” means natural gas, manufactured gas or any liquefied petroleum gas, and includes any mixture of natural gas, manufactured gas or liquefied petroleum gas, but does not include a liquefied petroleum gas that is distributed by a means other than a pipe line; (“gaz”)

“highway” includes a street and a lane; (“voie publique”)

“public utility” means natural and other gas works. (“service public”) R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 1; 1998, c. 15, Sched. E, s. 21 (1); 2001, c. 25, s. 480 (1).

1.1 Repealed: 2001, c. 25, s. 480 (2).

2. Repealed: 1999, c. 14, Sched. F, s. 7.

Restriction

3. (1) A municipal corporation shall not grant to any person nor shall any person acquire the right to use or occupy any of the highways of the municipality for a public utility or to construct or operate any part of a public utility in the municipality unless a by-law setting forth the terms and conditions upon which and the period for which such right is to be granted or acquired has been assented to by the municipal electors. 2001, c. 25, s. 480 (3).

(2) Repealed: 1998, c. 15, Sched. E, s. 21 (3).

(3) Repealed: 2001, c. 25, s. 480 (4).

(4) Repealed: 2001, c. 25, s. 480 (4).

Consent of council of city, when required

4. (1) The council of a local municipality shall not grant a franchise upon any highway of the municipality within a radius of eight kilometres of the boundary of any city without notice in writing to the council of the city, and if the council of the city, within four weeks after the receipt of the notice, gives a notice in writing to the council of the local municipality that it objects to the granting of the franchise the approval of the Ontario Energy Board shall be obtained, and if the council of the city does not give such notice within such time, it shall be deemed to have no objection and the council of the local municipality may grant the franchise with the assent of the municipal electors of the local municipality as provided by section 3. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 4 (1); 2001, c. 25, s. 480 (5).

Definition

(1.1) In subsection (1),

“city” means a local municipality that was a city on December 31, 2002. 2002, c. 17, Sched. F, Table.

(2) Repealed: 2001, c. 25, s. 480 (6).

Extension of certain existing works not to be made without by-law

5. (1) Where a by-law granting a franchise or right in respect of a public utility under subsection 3 (1), that has not been assented to by the municipal electors as provided by that subsection, was passed before the 16th day of April, 1912, no extension of or addition to the works or services constructed, established or operated under the authority of such by-law as they existed and were in operation at that date shall be made except under the authority of a by-law hereafter passed with the assent of the municipal electors, as provided by subsection 3 (1), and such consent is necessary, although such last-mentioned by-law is expressly limited in its operation to a period not exceeding one year. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 5 (1); 2001, c. 25, s. 480 (7).

Exceptions as to franchises granted before 16th March, 1909

(2) Subsection (1) does not apply to a franchise or right granted by or under the authority of any general or special Act of the Legislature before the 16th day of March, 1909, but no such franchise or right shall be renewed, nor shall the term thereof be extended by a municipal corporation except by by-law passed with the assent of the municipal electors as provided in section 3. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 5 (2).

Exceptions:

6. (1) Except where otherwise expressly provided, this Act does not apply to a by-law,

works originating in another municipality

(a) granting the right of passing through the municipality for the purpose of continuing a line, work or system that is intended to be operated in or for the benefit of another municipality and is not used or operated in the municipality for any other purpose except that of supplying gas in a municipality to persons whose land abuts on a highway along or across which the same is carried or conveyed, or to persons whose land lies within such limits as the council by by-law passed from time to time determines should be supplied with any of such services;

gas transmission lines

(b) granting the right of passing through the municipality with a line to transmit gas not intended to be distributed from such line in the municipality or only intended to be distributed from such line in the municipality to a person engaged in the transmission or distribution of gas;

works required for transmission of gas

(c) conferring the right to construct, use and operate works required for the transmission of gas not intended for sale or use in the municipality; or

limited to three years

(d) that is expressly limited in its operation to a period not exceeding three years and is approved by the Ontario Energy Board. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 6 (1); 2001, c. 25, s. 480 (8-11).

(2) Repealed: 2001, c. 25, s. 480 (12).

Extension of franchise

7. (1) Where a by-law to which clause 6 (1) (d) applies is passed, that clause does not apply to any subsequent by-law in respect of the same works or any part of them or to an extension of or addition to them, although the subsequent by-law is expressly limited in its operation to a period not exceeding three years, and no such subsequent by-law has any force or effect unless it is assented to by the municipal electors as provided by subsection 3 (1). R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 7 (1).

Idem

(2) Despite subsection (1), clause 6 (1) (d) applies to a subsequent by-law or by-laws in respect of the same works or any part of them or to an extension of or addition to them if the period of operation of such subsequent by-law or by-laws is expressly limited so that the total period of operation of the original by-law and the subsequent by-law or by-laws does not exceed three years. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 7 (2).

Approval for construction of gas works or supply of gas in municipality

8. (1) Despite any other provision in this Act or any other general or special Act, no person shall construct any works to supply,

(a) natural gas in any municipality in which such person was not on the 1st day of April, 1933, supplying gas; or

(b) gas in any municipality in which such person was not on the 1st day of April, 1933, supplying gas and in which gas was then being supplied,

without the approval of the Ontario Energy Board, and such approval shall not be given unless public convenience and necessity appear to require that such approval be given. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 8 (1); 1998, c. 15, Sched. E, s. 21 (4).

Form of approval

(2) The approval of the Ontario Energy Board shall be in the form of a certificate. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 8 (2).

Jurisdiction of Energy Board

(3) The Ontario Energy Board has and may exercise jurisdiction and power necessary for the purposes of this section and to grant or refuse to grant any certificate of public convenience and necessity, but no such certificate shall be granted or refused until after the Board has held a public hearing to deal with the matter upon application made to it therefor, and of which hearing such notice shall be given to such persons and municipalities as the Board may consider to be interested or affected and otherwise as the Board may direct. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 8 (3).

Gas franchise by-law to be approved by Energy Board

9. (1) No by-law granting,

(a) the right to construct or operate works for the distribution of gas;

(b) Repealed: 1998, c. 15, Sched. E, s. 21 (5).

(c) the right to extend or add to the works mentioned in clause (a); or

(d) a renewal of or an extension of the term of any right mentioned in clause (a),

shall be submitted to the municipal electors for their assent unless the terms and conditions upon which and the period for which such right is to be granted, renewed or extended have first been approved by the Ontario Energy Board. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 9 (1); 1998, c. 15, Sched. E, s. 21 (5-7).

Jurisdiction of Energy Board

(2) The Ontario Energy Board has and may exercise jurisdiction and power necessary for the purposes of this section and may give or refuse its approval. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 9 (2).

Hearing to be held

(3) The Ontario Energy Board shall not make an order granting its approval under this section until after the Board has held a public hearing to deal with the matter upon application therefor and of which hearing such notice shall be given in such manner and to such persons and municipalities as the Board may direct. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 9 (3).

Electors’ assent may be dispensed with

(4) The Board, after holding a public hearing upon such notice as the Board may direct and if satisfied that the assent of the municipal electors can properly under all the circumstances be dispensed with, may in any order made under this section declare and direct that the assent of the electors is not necessary. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 9 (4).

Application to Energy Board for renewal, etc., of gas franchise

10. (1) Where the term of a right referred to in clause 6 (1) (a), (b) or (c) that is related to gas or of a right to operate works for the distribution of gas has expired or will expire within one year, either the municipality or the party having the right may apply to the Ontario Energy Board for an order for a renewal of or an extension of the term of the right. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 10 (1); 1998, c. 15, Sched. E, s. 21 (8).

Powers of Energy Board

(2) The Ontario Energy Board has and may exercise jurisdiction and power necessary for the purposes of this section and, if public convenience and necessity appear to require it, may make an order renewing or extending the term of the right for such period of time and upon such terms and conditions as may be prescribed by the Board, or if public convenience and necessity do not appear to require a renewal or extension of the term of the right, may make an order refusing a renewal or extension of the right. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 10 (2).

Hearing

(3) The Board shall not make an order under subsection (2) until after the Board has held a public hearing upon application therefor and of which hearing such notice shall be given in such manner and to such persons and municipalities as the Board may direct. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 10 (3).

Interim order

(4) Despite subsection (3), where an application has been made under subsection (1) and the term of the right has expired or is likely to expire before the Board disposes of the application, the Board, on the written request of the applicant, and without holding a public hearing, may make such order as may be necessary to continue the right until an order is made under subsection (2). R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 10 (4).

Order deemed by-law assented to by electors

(5) An order of the Board heretofore or hereafter made under subsection (2) renewing or extending the term of the right or an order of the Board under subsection (4) shall be deemed to be a valid by-law of the municipality concerned assented to by the municipal electors for the purposes of this Act and of section 58 of the Public Utilities Act. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 10 (5).

Right expired before commencement of section

(6) An application may not be made under this section in respect of a right that has expired before the 2nd day of December, 1969. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.55, s. 10 (6).

11. Repealed: 2003, c. 3, s. 1.

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