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2017 Proposed Boundary Change


Added to the City of Peterborough website March 6, 2017 

What is a "Municipal Boundary"?

A municipal boundary is a defined line that denotes the limits of a municipality's jurisdiction. Properties that fall within a municipality's boundary are subject to that municipality's bylaws, property tax levy, and services provided by that municipality.

How does a municipality "change" its boundary?

Section 173 of the Municipal Act, S.O. 2001 identifies the process for a municipality to "restructure."  Restructuring a municipality can include the annexation of lands from one municipality to another.  Under this Act, the affected municipalities submit a proposal to the Minister of Municipal Affairs to change a municipal boundary.  The Minister, after considering the proposal, can issue an order to change the municipal boundary, allowing one municipality to annex land from another municipality.

Why is a change to the City of Peterborough/Township of Cavan Monaghan/County of Peterborough boundary being considered at this time?

Peterborough is one of eight cities located outside of the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) identified under Provincial policy as an Urban Growth Centre, which is where future population growth is projected to occur in the next 25 years.  The Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe establishes growth targets for the City of Peterborough.  The City is projected to have a population of 115,000 people and 58,000 jobs by 2041.  To accommodate this projected growth, especially the employment aspects, the City of Peterborough will require additional lands to provide places for existing and new residents to work.

Over the past 3 years City of Peterborough and the Township of Cavan Monaghan have engaged in discussions of inter-municipal interest focused on the need and opportunity to secure employment land, capable of being serviced, for the benefit of the region.

Doesn't  the  City  have more  than  enough  land  within  its  existing boundary  to meet  its  future growth needs?

The City does have undeveloped residential land within its existing boundary.  However, there is a shortage of serviced employment lands in the region required by the City of Peterborough to meet its “Places to Grow” employment targets.  The Township and County seek to be part of a solution to the employment land issue, in the interests of regional economic growth.
The inclusion of residential lands in a boundary adjustment is integral to the development of the employment lands, given the same ownership of the majority of employment lands and the residential lands to be annexed.

What was the process that was used to develop the current proposal to change the City/ Township/ County boundary?

In March of 2015 the Minister of Municipal Affairs formally appointed the Provincial Land and Development Facilitator to assist the City, Cavan Monaghan and the County develop a local restructuring proposal that benefits all.  Under the guidance of the Provincial Land and Development Facilitator, on December 7, 2016 the staff negotiations reached a successful conclusion with the execution of a Memorandum of Understanding

What areas of the Township are being proposed for transfer into the City of Peterborough?

The proposed boundary adjustment, with an anticipated effective date of January 1, 2018, is to the western boundary of the City including a long-term employment lands allocation, the Peterborough Airport, and the natural extension of residential lands. (Map attached)

What is the rationale for transferring this part of the Township to City jurisdiction?

The proposed adjustment to the western boundary of the City of Peterborough, including a long-term employment lands allocation, the Peterborough Airport, and the natural extension of residential lands is based on the following rationale:

  1. There is a shortage of serviced employment lands in the region and the City of Peterborough requires an employment land solution to meet its “Places to Grow” employment targets.  The Township and County seek to be part of a solution to the employment land issue, in the interests of regional economic growth;
  2. The inclusion of residential lands in a potential boundary adjustment is integral to the resolution of the employment land shortage, given common ownership of employment and residential lands;
  3. The Peterborough Airport has been the focus of significant investment by the City of Peterborough in the last decade and securing the land base of the Airport and environs in the jurisdictional control of the City of Peterborough has been a long-standing expectation of the City.

What is the rationale for compensating the Township and County for a boundary adjustment? 

  1. The employment lands, residential lands and Airport Lands which have been identified in the negotiations presently make a significant financial contribution to the economic health of the Township and County.
  2. Long term economic incentives, commensurate with the economic loss to both the Township and County resulting from a boundary adjustment, is a reasonable expectation; and
  3. The negotiating teams agreed that certainty should be a hallmark of the negotiation and that a guaranteed annual revenue stream over the next 25 years will allow the Township and County to fiscally plan for a future with an adjusted municipal boundary.  

If these areas of the Township are transferred to the City's jurisdiction, will these lands be developed?

Development will take place within portions of the lands proposed for annexation, but a number of steps will need to occur prior to any development in the area.  A secondary planning exercise will need to be undertaken by the City to determine future land use, transportation requirements, servicing, and protection of natural areas.  If lands within the area are identified as "developable" under this process, then Official Plan and Zoning Bylaw Amendments will be required for lands to be developed.  All of these activities will involve public consultation.  There are 4,140 acres total in the annexation, of which approximately 1890 acres are environmentally constrained.

If the areas of the Township are transferred to the City’s jurisdiction, when is development anticipated to take place? 

The inventory of serviced employment land within the region is very low placing Peterborough at a competitive disadvantage.  The production of employment will be regarded as a priority following annexation.  It is anticipated that the secondary planning exercise to support the development of the residential lands should take two years to complete. The proposed annexation is a long-term land solution for the City of Peterborough, supporting growth over the next 25 years in response to market demand city-wide. 

Is the proposed change to the City/Township boundary final?

The Memorandum of Understanding represents the terms of a proposal that has been negotiated by representatives of the City, Township and County. The Councils of all three municipalities have stated that public consultation of the proposal is essential prior to making a final decision on whether to accept or reject the proposal.  A public consultation session is scheduled to take place in May 2017. 

Following the public consultation, the Councils of each municipality will either support or not support the Restructuring Proposal.  A Council will express support by passing bylaws approving the Restructuring Proposal and all agreements required to implement the proposal. The Restructuring Proposal will then be submitted to the Province for consideration.

Will Township or County taxes increase if the proposed change to the City/Township boundary occurs?

As part of the Memorandum of Understanding, the City will provide compensation to the Township and County in a number of forms to ensure that remaining Township and County taxpayers do not see property tax increases as a result of a boundary adjustment.

I live in one of the areas of the Township proposed to be annexed into the City.  Will my taxes increase?

Taxes will increase to varying degrees depending on the tax class of your property.  Generally, taxpayers within the annexed area can expect to experience an average increase to their property taxes of approximately 30 percent under the City tax structure.  To assist with the transition, the City will phase-in the tax increase related solely to the boundary change at 10% per year until the full rate is achieved in year 10. Taxpayers will also experience yearly tax increases just like any other City resident.


Assume the 2016 Township taxes for a home are $3,000.  Taxes for the same home in the City during 2016 were $3,900, a difference of $900.  Let’s also assume that the City tax rate increases in both Years 1 and 2 by 2%.  What will the annexed property pay in Year 1 and 2 for property taxes?

The 10 year phase-in credit ($900/10) applies to the property after the regular City tax rate increase. Year 1 = $900x9/10 = $810, Year 2 = $900x 8/10 = $720

Year 1:  $3,900 x 2% = $3,978 less $810 = $3,168.00
Year 2:  $3,978 x 2% = $4,057.56 less $720 = $3,337.56

Will properties that are annexed start to pay for water and sewer services even though they do not utilize those services because they have their own well and septic system?

No, in the City, the costs of the City water and sewer systems are paid through user fees (water charge and sewer surcharge), issued on a water bill by the Peterborough Utilities Corporation. As long as new City residents (new and existing) use their own well and septic, they will not receive a bill from the Utility.  If, at some time in the future, they utilize the City system for either water or sewer, or both; then they would start to receive a bill.

How can I find more information on this proposed change to the City / Township boundary?
Additional information is available on the following websites:

City  of Peterborough:  
Township of Cavan Monaghan:   
County of Peterborough website at  

 City Crest and TypeCounty LogoCavan Monaghan Logo