Proposed amendments to O. Reg. 436/22 Definitions and Prescribed Provisions under the Building Broadband Faster Act, 2021

Regulation Number(s):
Instrument Type:
Bill or Act:
Building Broadband Faster Act, 2021
Summary of Proposal:
The Building Broadband Faster Act, 2021 (BBFA) allows the Minister of Infrastructure to issue direction through notices and orders that require local distribution companies (LDCs) to complete make-ready work for designated broadband projects. In response to non-compliance with a Minister's notice by LDCs, the Minister may authorize a proponent to conduct make-ready work that is described in the notice.

Currently, there are no regulatory requirements that proponents must follow if they are authorized to conduct this work. In the absence of such requirements, there is a risk of adverse impact to LDC assets.

The Ministry of Infrastructure proposes to prescribe such requirements through amendments to Ontario Regulation 436/22 (Definitions and Prescribed Provisions) under the BBFA. The proposed requirements aim to ensure that qualified professionals conduct make-ready work and that they are held accountable for any potential damage that their work may cause.

The Ministry of Infrastructure's approach draws from existing requirements in the electricity sector for proponent-led make-ready work under Ontario Regulation 410/22 (Electricity Infrastructure- Designated Broadband Projects) under the Ontario Energy Board Act, 1998 (OEBA).

Specifically, MOI proposes to prescribe the following requirements for the purposes of s. 9 (3) of the BBFA:

1. The work is to be carried out by persons who meet the requirements set out in the definition of "competent person" in Ontario Regulation 22/04 (Electrical Distribution Safety) made under the Electricity Act, 1998.

2. The licensed distributor receives from the proponent an indemnity for any damage or deficiency to the distributor's distribution system resulting from conducting the work during the period in which the work is being conducted or at least 120 days after the work is completed.

The proposed changes would enable a flexible formal dispute resolution process that may be used in addition to informal dispute resolution mechanisms such as Infrastructure Ontario's Technical Assistance Team.
Analysis of Regulatory Impact:
The proposal is expected to have no additional impact on the resources of proponents of designated broadband projects, as they are already expected to comply with such requirements if they are authorized to conduct make-ready work under O. Reg. 410/22 under the OEBA.

The proposed amendments would align a Ministerial authority with the requirements it is intended to enforce. The Minister would consider exercising this authority upon receiving a written application from a proponent who may state its preference for the party responsible for conducting the make-ready work (i.e., the LDC or the proponent itself).

The proposal is not expected to result in any new requirements or costs to municipalities, LDCs, or other stakeholders affected by designated broadband projects.
Further Information:
Proposal Number:
Posting Date:
November 16, 2023
Comments Due Date:
December 7, 2023
Contact Address:
Ministry of Infrastructure
Broadband Strategic Policy and Analytics Branch
College Park
777 Bay St
4th Flr Suite 425
ON M5G 2E5