Transition Timelines - Municipal Government Act

Some provisions of the Municipal Government Act (MGA) provide dates or deadlines to meet different requirements. The MGA came into effect on December 23, 2017. The Transition Timelines at a Glance (revised) document provides a summary of the information.

What changes take effect when the MGA is proclaimed?

Municipalities must now ensure:

  • They follow the new conflict of interest standards;
  • They prepare for new content and process requirements for their 2018 budget;
  • That council members are not fulfilling duties of employees;
  • That a municipal office is designated; and
  • They budget for an audit or if their budgeted expenditures are less than $50,000, a review engagement.

Anything else that is not explicitly transitioned came into effect upon proclamation of the Act. There was no change to the fiscal year for municipalities in 2017: it remained as January 1, 2017, to December 31, 2017.

What is required within one year of the MGA being proclaimed?

With the proclamation of the MGA, a number of changes and requirements take effect in 2018:

  • There will be a 15 month fiscal year running from January 1, 2018, to March 31, 2019;
  • Municipalities will need to adopt, by resolution, a financial plan (operating budget and capital budget) for the fiscal year on or before March 31, 2018;
  • The financial plan must be submitted to the Province on or before April 15, 2018;
  • The audit or review engagement, as the case may be, of the financial statements for 2017, must be completed by June 30, 2018 and made public before the end of July 2018;
  • The process for developing a voters' list must be identified by municipalities no later than July 30, 2018;
  • Municipalities will need to have their election procedures in place;
  • Council sizes are to comply with those listed in the MGA as of the 2018 election - current members of council continue in place until the next council takes office in December, 2018.

There are also a number of bylaws that are required to be in place by December 23, 2018. These bylaws, which may be subject to regulation, are:

  • An access to information and protection of privacy bylaw;
  • A conflict of interest bylaw;
  • A code of conduct bylaw for council;
  • A code of conduct policy for employees;
  • A records retention and disposition bylaw;
  • A procedural bylaw.

What are the longer term timelines?

Starting in 2019, the fiscal year for municipalities will run from April 1 of the current to March 31 of the next. This will align the fiscal year of municipalities with that of the Province.

Three years after the MGA was proclaimed (2020), municipalities will be required to have an approved emergency management program in place. Additionally, all municipalities will be required to have a full financial audit each year.

Five years after the MGA was proclaimed (2022), municipalities will need to have land use plans and supporting bylaws in place and are required to have a municipal office that is accessible to all members of the public open for a minimum of 20 hours per week. 

Note: This page is prepared for information purposes only and should not be relied upon as a substitute for specialized legal or professional advice.
Published date: 
January 9, 2018
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