Letter re Committee of Adjustment

March 10, 2015

in Committees of Adjustment


Raymond David
Director, Community Planning
Scarborough District
Denise Rundle
Manager and Deputy Secretary-Treasurer
Scarborough Committee of Adjustment
RE: Towards a Functional Committee of Adjustment
This is to provide our comments on the directions of Planning and Growth Management
Committee regarding improvements to the Committee of Adjustment (CofA) process, as
proposed by Councillor Jaye Robinson, and approved at its June 19, 2014 meeting (PG
Overall we agree with and support the directions as they offer some improvement to the
functioning of Committees of Adjustment. Detailed comments regarding the specific
directions are attached.
As you may be aware, FoNTRA previously submitted a report to the 2010-2014 Planning and
Growth Management Committee (Chair Peter Milczyn) regarding the Committee of
Adjustment and worked with Michael Mizzi, former Director, Community Planning and
Special Projects, on improvements. A summary of this report with City staff update, dated
November 29, 2012, is also attached. This report continues to be relevant and we would
request that it be taken into account and updated as part of the staff consideration for the
improvements currently under review.
First and foremost FoNTRA believes that the City needs to make it clear that the Zoning Bylaws
are to be upheld by the CofA and a minor variance will only be granted if the applicant
can demonstrate sound planning (not for economic or personal/emotional reasons). This
should be made clear to everyone involved; the applicants, their agents/lawyers/architects,
City planners, the CofA members. Unless the City makes this kind of statement, the
directions amount to mere tinkering with the process.
Secondly the mandated procedures under which the CofA operates continues to favour the
applicant, specifically
o The applicant speaks
o Those in opposition speak
o The applicant responds to the opposition’s comments
o Those in opposition are NOT allowed to respond to the opposition’s comments
Finally, it is recognized that not all the issues re minor variances can be laid at the Committee
of Adjustment process; the substantive planning issues, raised by FoNTRA, for example the
spread of the tall house/integrated garage design, need to be addressed by changes to the
zoning by-laws and even the OP policy.
Yours truly,
Geoff Kettel
George Milbrandt
Co-Chair, FoNTRA
129 Hanna Road
Toronto, Ontario
M4G 3N6
Co-Chair, FoNTRA
193 Wanless Ave
Toronto, ON
M4N 1W4
Cc: Councillor Jaye Robinson
FoNTRA Representatives & Other Interested Individuals
FoNTRA comments regarding PGMC directions (June 19, 2014)
FoNTRA Committee of Adjustment

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