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Residential Tenancies Act

Municipal Vital Services By-Laws


215. In this Part,

"vital services by-law" means a by-law passed under section 216. 2006, c. 17, s. 215.

By-laws respecting vital services

216. (1) The council of a local municipality may pass by-laws,

    (a) requiring every landlord to provide adequate and suitable vital services to each of the landlord's rental units;

    (b) prohibiting a supplier from ceasing to provide the vital service until a notice has been given under subsection 217 (1);

    (c) requiring a supplier to promptly restore the vital service when directed to do so by an official named in the by-law;

    (d) prohibiting a person from hindering, obstructing or interfering with or attempting to hinder, obstruct or interfere with the official or person referred to in subsection 218 (1) in the exercise of a power or performance of a duty under this section or sections 217 to 223;

    (e) providing that a person who contravenes or fails to comply with a vital services by-law is guilty of an offence for each day or part of a day on which the offence occurs or continues;

    (f) providing that every director or officer of a corporation that is convicted of an offence who knowingly concurs in the commission of the offence is guilty of an offence;

    (g) authorizing an official named in the by-law to enter into agreements on behalf of the local municipality with suppliers of vital services to ensure that adequate and suitable vital services are provided for rental units.

2006, c. 17, s. 216 (1).


(2) A vital services by-law does not apply to a landlord with respect to a rental unit to the extent that the tenant has expressly agreed to obtain and maintain the vital services. 2006, c. 17, s. 216 (2).

Contents of vital services by-law

(3) A vital services by-law may,

    (a) classify buildings or parts of buildings for the purposes of the by-law and designate the classes to which it applies;

    (b) designate areas of the local municipality in which the by-law applies;

    (c) establish standards for the provision of adequate and suitable vital services;

    (d) prohibit a landlord from ceasing to provide a vital service for a rental unit except when necessary to alter or repair the rental unit and only for the minimum period necessary to effect the alteration or repair;

    (e) provide that a landlord shall be deemed to have caused the cessation of a vital service for a rental unit if the landlord is obligated to pay the supplier for the vital service and fails to do so and, as a result of the non-payment, the vital service is no longer provided for the rental unit.

2006, c. 17, s. 216 (3).

Notice by supplier

217. (1) A supplier shall give notice of an intended discontinuance of a vital service only if the vital service is to be discontinued for the rental unit because the landlord has breached a contract with the supplier for the supply of the vital service. 2006, c. 17, s. 217 (1).


(2) The notice shall be given in writing to the clerk of the local municipality at least 30 days before the supplier ceases to provide the vital service. 2006, c. 17, s. 217 (2).


218. (1) An official named in a vital services by-law or a person acting under his or her instructions may, at all reasonable times, enter and inspect a building or part of a building with respect to which the by-law applies for the purpose of determining compliance with the by-law or a direction given under subsection 221 (1). 2006, c. 17, s. 218 (1).


(2) Despite subsection (1), the official or person shall not enter a rental unit,

    (a) unless he or she has obtained the consent of the occupier of the rental unit after informing him or her that he or she may refuse permission to enter the unit; or

    (b) unless he or she is authorized to do so by a warrant issued under section 231.

2006, c. 17, s. 218 (2).

Services by municipality

219. (1) If a landlord does not provide a vital service for a rental unit in accordance with a vital services by-law, the local municipality may arrange for the service to be provided. 2006, c. 17, s. 219 (1).


(2) The amount spent by the local municipality under subsection (1) plus an administrative fee of 10 per cent of that amount shall, on registration of a notice of lien in the appropriate land registry office, be a lien in favour of the local municipality against the property at which the vital service is provided. 2006, c. 17, s. 219 (2).

Not special lien

(3) Subsection 349 (3) of the Municipal Act, 2001 does not apply with respect to the amount spent and the fee, and no special lien is created under that subsection. 2006, c. 17, s. 219 (3).


(4) The certificate of the clerk of the local municipality as to the amount spent is proof, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, of the amount. 2006, c. 17, s. 219 (4).

Interim certificate

(5) Before issuing a certificate referred to in subsection (4), the clerk shall send an interim certificate by registered mail to the registered owner of the property that is subject to the lien and to all mortgagees or other encumbrancers registered on title. 2006, c. 17, s. 219 (5).


220. An affected owner, mortgagee or other encumbrancer may, within 15 days after the interim certificate is mailed, appeal the amount shown on it to the council of the local municipality. 2006, c. 17, s. 220.

Payments transferred

221. (1) If the local municipality has arranged for a vital service to be provided to a rental unit, an official named in the vital services by-law may direct a tenant to pay any or all of the rent for the rental unit to the local municipality. 2006, c. 17, s. 221 (1).

Effect of payment

(2) Payment by a tenant under subsection (1) shall be deemed not to constitute a default in the payment of rent due under a tenancy agreement or a default in the tenantís obligations for the purposes of this Act. 2006, c. 17, s.221 (2).

Use of money

222. (1) The local municipality shall apply the rent received from a tenant to reduce the amount that it spent to provide the vital service and the related administrative fee. 2006, c. 17, s. 222 (1).

Accounting and payment of balance

(2) The local municipality shall provide the person otherwise entitled to receive the rent with an accounting of the rents received for each individual rental unit and shall pay to that person any amount remaining after the rent is applied in accordance with subsection (1). 2006, c. 17, s. 222 (2).


223. (1) No proceeding for damages or otherwise shall be commenced against an official or a person acting under his or her instructions or against an employee or agent of a local municipality for any act done in good faith in the performance or intended performance of a duty or authority under any of sections 215 to 222 or under a by-law passed under section 216 or for any alleged neglect or default in the performance in good faith of the duty or authority. 2006, c. 17, s. 223 (1).


(2) Subsection (1) does not relieve a local municipality of liability to which it would otherwise be subject. 2006, c. 17, s. 223 (2).

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