The City of Peterborough Legal Services includes the Office of the City Solicitor and the Provincial Offences Act Office.

Office of the City Solicitor

The Office of the City Solicitor (OCS) provides a range of legal services to the Corporation, City Council, the CAO and City staff. Legal services are provided on issues related to planning and land development; real estate transactions; real property agreements; by-law drafting; labour and employment; social services including
housing; legislative interpretation, contracts and advocacy before administrative tribunals and the courts. The OCS also oversees the management of the Provincial Offences Office.

Highlights

The OCS manages a varied caseload, dealing with a broad range of legal issues faced by a single-tier municipality and relating to provincial and federal jurisdiction. The OCS's caseload is determined by the needs and projects of Council and City Departments. For 2021, OCS will be involved with numerous land acquisitions relating to road widening and other capital projects, various housing programs and Airport matters.

OCS staff participate in a number of inter-departmental committees such as the Risk Management Committee. As such they work closely with the Insurance and Risk Management Coordinator involving litigation and insurance coverage for contractual and other risk management documents.

From time to time, certain matters requiring extensive resources or specialized expertise (such areas of law as labour negotiations, environmental issues, and certain litigation) are outsourced.

Provincial Offences Office

The Provincial Offences Act (POA) Office is responsible for administration, courtroom support and municipal prosecution of the Provincial Offences Act (the Act) offences as well as municipal bylaws within the City and County of Peterborough. The POA office ensures compliance with the Act, the Memorandum of Understanding with the Ministry of the Attorney General and the Inter-municipal Service Agreement.

Highlights

The number of charges issued is the primary driver of the POA Court system, however, the Court has no influence on the number of charges filed by enforcement agencies. The number of charges fluctuates and the composition of the dollar value of the charges impacts the revenue generated. POA revenues are only realized by the payment of fines. 

MTO/Service Ontario now collects defaulted fines that have suspended a driver's licence as well as plate denials for defaulted parking tickets. This change means in a proportional decrease in daily payments coming directly to POA offices but shows up as revenue sent to us monthly by the Province. 

Since January 2020, Peterborough Police Services has significantly decreased the number of 72 hour tickets issued and voided at the police station. This change has caused an increase in the number of tickets being filed with the Court. 

Staff will continue to pursue collection initiatives with the goal of increasing fine revenue. Net revenues are divided between the City and County of Peterborough based on the prior year's relative weighted assessment. The County's share for 2021 is 55.1%; the City's share is 44.9%.

Defaulted fines collected
Year201820192020 (forecast)
Amount $1,110,029 $1,267,363 $980,000

2021 Overview

Office of the City Solicitor
Description2021 recommended
Expenditures $635,711
Revenues $0
Net requirement $635,711
Provincial Offences Office
Description2021 recommended
Expenditures $1,861,278
Revenues $2,170,000
Net requirement -$-308,722