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Last updated
24 August 2012


About Regional & Local Government

Regional Responsibilities
Area Municipality Responsibilities

The Regional Municipality of Durham was created on January 1, 1974 as a Regional Government in the Province of Ontario under The Regional Municipality of Durham Act, 1973 of the Ontario Legislature. The Region is one of five Regional Governments of the GTA established by the Province of Ontario. The Act provided for the formation of the eight area municipalities (the City of Oshawa, the towns of Ajax, Pickering and Whitby; the Municipality of Clarington and the Townships of Brock, Scugog and Uxbridge), by the annexation and amalgamation of twenty-one former local municipalities in the Counties of Ontario, Northumberland and Durham.

The Regional system of government is comprised of two levels of government which has been designed to meet the complete challenges of the day. The Regional Municipality of Durham is the first level and the eight area municipalities constitute the second level of the two-tier system of local government.

The Region and its eight area municipalities work together to respond to the challenges posed by a diverse and expanding municipality. The regional system has the advantages of remaining close to the people and responsive to their needs, while permitting a region-wide approach to planning and urban development, and delivering required services. By having strong fiscal management, the Region is able to ensure efficient allocation of resources and cost effective service delivery.

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Regional Responsibilities

The Regional Corporation has sole responsibility for the following:
bulletStrategic land use planning
bulletSubdivision and condominium approval
bulletDelegated authority for Area Municipal Official Plans and Amendments
bulletWater supply and distribution
bulletWater billing
bulletSewage collection and treatment
bulletPolice services
bulletMain roads, traffic lights and controls
bulletRefuse disposal
bulletHealth and social services
bulletEmergency measures
bulletAll borrowing of money for capital expenditures
bulletEconomic development and tourism

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Area Municipality Responsibilities

Your Local Council has responsibility for the following:
bulletLocal planning
bulletLocal streets and sidewalks
bulletRefuse collection
bulletFire protection
bulletParks and recreation
bulletTax collection
bulletBuilding inspection and permits

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