Client Service Policy

Conservation Halton’s Administration Office is closed to the public due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This means that we will not be accepting walk-in meetings or hosting or attending external meetings. Our staff will be available to assist you by email and phone. Staff will also be able to assist with electronic planning and permit submissions. Details about what you can expect from our Planning & Regulations team are posted below.

We will keep you informed:

Staff will keep the lines of communication open and will inform you on the status of our review and your application. We will also keep you up to date if there are any changes on when our office will re-open to the public.

Submission Tips

  • E-mail us first – Staff is available via email, in person, video conference or phone but it is best to first connect with us over email. Please email us with any questions or if you would like to set up a time for a virtual meeting or conference call. Continue to reach out directly to your contact on the Planning & Regulations team for file specific matters. General inquiries can be directed to envserv@hrca.on.ca.
  • Complete, digital submissions – Ensure that permit submissions are complete and include all required information. Digital submissions are preferred and can be made via email or for large files via our P&R drop box (see process below). CH permits and correspondence will be issued electronically via email.
  • Reduce file sizes – Given the volume of digital submissions we are currently receiving, as well as the amount of data associated with most planning or permit submissions, it would be helpful if files were compressed, where possible (i.e., reduce PDF and AutoCAD file size and create zip files). It would also be helpful to have large technical reports broken down into separate sections (i.e., main report should be separate from appendices) and larger plans/figures sent separately from reports. Please use short file names that clearly identify the file contents.
  • Prioritize files – Please let us know if there are certain files you would like us to focus our attention on. It would be helpful if you could prioritize for us your files and business-critical needs.
  • Electronic payments – Credit card or Electronic Fund Transfers (EFTs) are the preferred method of payment for both permit and planning submissions. Planning & Regulations staff can provide direction on how to make payment. We are unable to process any application without the applicable review fee.
  • P&R drop box – An electronic drop box has been set-up for large planning and permit submissions. Planning & Regulations staff will provide applicants with a link and password so that digital submissions can be uploaded to our digital drop box.
  • Planning reviews – New planning applications must be circulated to CH by our municipal partners and should not be submitted directly to CH (except electronic payment; refer to “Electronic Payments”). All review agencies should be copied on subsequent submissions to ensure that each agency is reviewing the same information. Digital submissions are preferred and should include all required information (see submission tips above).
  • Upfront technical reviews – To expedite the review, CH recommends large technical reviews are completed in advance of a formal planning or permit application being submitted (e.g., EIR/FSS, SIS). Staff can also work with landowners to identify environmental constraints/opportunities for specific sites (e.g., floodplain modelling reviews, wetland water balance assessments). Technical review fees will apply.
  • Site inspections – CH staff is available to complete site inspections. All participants must abide by the most up-to-date public health requirements (e.g., physical distancing, wearing masks). In some situations CH may consider alternative options to expedite site inspections, such as drone flyover video review and/or photos. We encourage landowners to contact staff before doing this, so that we can discuss if video footage is appropriate for the given site or works.

 

 

Under the Conservation Authorities Act, Conservation Halton (CH) has a mandate to protect life and property from natural hazards such as flooding and erosion, to prevent environmental degradation and loss of natural features and their ecological and hydrological functions, and to prevent pollution of natural features and watercourses. To do this, CH undertakes a wide range of programs and services, including the administration of regulations and the provision of environmental planning services to municipalities, landowners and other agencies.

In providing review of permit and planning applications, CH’s interdisciplinary planning and regulations teams work together to deliver timely and comprehensive reviews. Our commitment to client service has been supported by the CH Board of Directors through its approval of our Client Services Policy 

In addition, Conservation Halton publicly reports on our response times for the review of planning and permit applications. For 2018, our review times are included on Page 19 of our Annual Report. A more detailed report outlining response times was provided to the CH Board of Directors in May 2019.