As we noted in a previous blog, Bill 106, Protecting Condominium Owners Act, 2015 is the proposed new condominium legislation, which will substantially revamp the existing Condominium Act. This is the first in a series of blog postings that will highlight some of the provisions of Bill 106.
One of the most noteworthy changes is the creation of the Condominium Authority, which will be an independent not-for-profit corporation.
The responsibilities of the Condominium Authority will include:
- Dispute resolution (more details will be provided in a subsequent blog)
- Preparation of one or more guides providing information to purchasers of condo units, as well as the rights and responsibilities of owners and occupiers of units and of condominium corporation board members
- Director education/training
- Maintenance of a condominium registry (All corporations will be required to file annual returns, as well as notices of change for every change in the board of directors.)
Details of the responsibilities of the Condominium Authority will be set out in an administrative agreement between the Government of Ontario and the Condominium Authority.
The Government will provide the initial funding for the Condominium Authority. After that, the Condominium Authority will fund its activities by user fees and by assessments on condominium corporations. These assessments will form part of the common expenses of each condominium corporation that are charged to unit owners in accordance with the proportions set out in the condominium declaration.
A number of measures will be in place to ensure accountability and transparency of the Condominium Authority and its activities:
- The Minister of Government and Consumer Services can establish competency criteria for board members of the Condominium Authority. While the Minister will be entitled to appoint members to the board of the Condominium Authority, the Government-appointed members cannot form a majority of the board members.
- The Condominium Authority will be required to make its by-laws available to the public and to publish on its website details of all fees assessed by the Condominium Authority.
- At least annually, the Condominium Authority will provide to the Minister a report on its activities and affairs.
- The Auditor General will have the right to audit the Condominium Authority, in which case the Condominium Authority is required to provide the Auditor General with access to all of its records. (The Auditor General’s recent audit of the activities of Hydro One illustrates the extent to which the activities of a quasi-governmental entity can be scrutinized and placed under the public microscope.)
As Bill 106 has only had First Reading, readers should note that the provisions of Bill 106 could change before the legislation is finally enacted.