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Added teeth to 'Power of Entry' bylaw in New Tecumseth

Posted January 13, 2020

New Tecumseth will draw on provisions of the Ontario Municipal Act to grant its officers the powers and conditions for conducting an inspection and exercising a power of entry onto land in the Town of New Tecumseth.

The updated draft bylaw, on tonight's council agenda, would replace the current requirement to either obtain permission from the property owner or obtain a search warrant to enter the property.

For municipal purposes, 'Officer' means a Police Officer, a Municipal Law Enforcement Officer, a Fire Department Official or designate, the Director of Planning/Development or designate, the Chief Building Official or designate or such other person appointed by By-law to enforce the provision of a By-law of the Municipality, provincial statute or federal statute.

The authority would be linked to enforcing bylaws such as Property Standards and Canine Control.

"Sections 435, 436, 437 and 438 of the Municipal Act provides the municipality the power to enter onto land for the purpose of carrying out an inspection to ensure that its By-laws, directions, orders and conditions of a licence are being compiled with," according to the report to council. "The proposed By-law enables Officers appointed by the Town to monitor and inspect property for compliance while at the same time respecting privacy rights in a home. This is accomplished by enabling Officers to enter upon a person's property without the need for consent or a warrant unless the place being entered is a “room or place actually being used as a dwelling."

All stories, unless otherwise noted,
by Tony Veltri