The Township of Alberton is located within the Rainy River District in Northwestern Ontario and includes two geographic townships, namely Crozier and Roddick. In 2001, the Township revised its Official Plan and Zoning By-law. It is expected that these documents should remain valid for Township purposes, with only minor variation by way of application, for a period of approximately twenty years, subject to changes necessitated by compliance with amendments to Provincial legislation.
The Official Plan and Zoning By-Law define and contain land use policies for the entire Township. General inquiries regarding the planning documents as well as inquiries about applications for consent, Official Plan amendment or Zoning By-Law amendment should be directed to Dawn Hayes. Rezoning Applications are submitted to Council. Applications for severance and for minor variance are made to the Committee of Adjustment.
PROCESS FOR APPLICATION FOR ZONING BY-LAW AMENDMENT
Applications forms and information sheets may be obtained from the Municipal Office. By summer’s end, the documents will be available in .pdf format on this webpage.
When an application is submitted and it is confirmed that all information required to be provided is received, the application is deemed complete. A public meeting date is set and notice is published in a local newspaper (the Fort Frances Times) not less than 21 days before the meeting. The notice ad is also posted on the Township website and at the Municipal Office entry. The application is circulated to relevant agencies for comment. The public meeting is held to receive input and comments on the application from the public, as well as to receive any comments provided by the agencies to which the application was circulated.
There is a format for the public meeting and the same script is used for every zoning amendment application, with only specific application information being changed from script to script. The application is introduced, compliance with notice requirements of the Planning Act is confirmed and comments from agencies are received. The Applicant (or agent) is given the opportunity to speak in favour of the application if he/she wishes. Comments from the public are then received in an orderly manner, with written comments being considered first. Council next hears the comments of persons who submitted written requests to speak at the meeting and these are heard in order of receipt of the written requests. Council then hears from anyone else in attendance who wishes to comment, in an orderly person-by-person manner as each individual is called on by the Reeve. The meeting continues until everyone who wishes to make comments is heard. If necessary due to the number of people who wish to comment, the public meeting may be continued on a second evening to ensure that everyone who wishes to be heard has his/her say.
Council considers all public input in making its decision. It may request further information or clarification on points raised during the process. The decision on an application is made at either a regular Council meeting or at a Special Council Meeting, and is made only after the application process is complete and when Council feels it has had sufficient time to properly consider the application.
While secondary considerations (i.e. financial impacts) may be relevant, the primary basis for Council’s decision must be planning principles in order for the decision to be defensible in the event that it is appealed, since the Ontario Municipal Board hears appeals based on planning principles only. When Council’s decision is rendered, the reasons for it must be given in writing.
The process is designed to be fair and to provide both transparency and an opportunity for public input. Every application goes through this process before a decision to either approve or refuse to amend zoning is made.
Click on the link below to read a .pdf version of the Zoning By-Law. Please note that the Zoning By-law and Map (at end of document) have updated to include site specific Zoning By-Law Amendments made up to July, 2010.