Help Us Stop Bill 100, the Trails Act

Published April 1, 2016

One of the mandates of the Ontario Landowners Association (OLA) is to educate the public regarding their rights as private property owners. Since we became aware of Bill 100, the Trails Act, we have been actively contacting those that are impacted by the Bill. This includes local and provincial snowmobile clubs, the Ontario Trails Council, local trails clubs, and property owners. In most cases, these groups were unaware of the Bill, which was introduced last May by MPP for Don Valley East, Michael Coteau.

In discussions with these groups, it appears that no-one asked for a Bill that proposes easements, registered on title of private property. Whether you believe that the easements are voluntary or not, this is a bad Bill, which was crafted without input from those affected, or so we are told by the various groups. Nor will these groups be consulted when the regulations that go along with this Bill are designed, or when future amendments are made to the Act. With this much uncertainty surrounding the Bill and its future impact on trails, how can anyone say it does not threaten property rights, or likewise the good relationship between recreational clubs and property owners?

The OLA respects the agreements that have been in effect for decades between recreational groups and private property owners. Many of us use these trails and want to see them continue, but without the interference of government. Many will agree that the current method of negotiating with property owners for trail usage is not perfect but it works and has worked for decades. The government has no business interfering with these agreements. Bill 100 does nothing for private property owners. Let’s work together to pressure the Ontario Government to pull this Bill. Write to your MPP http://www.ontla.on.ca/web/members/members_current.do?locale=en and to the Hon. Michael Coteau, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport at mcoteau.mpp@liberal.ola.org. Let’s return to the status quo.

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