The Ontario Trails Act 2016 (S.O. 2016, c.8, Sched. 1) is now available to permanently protect trails.
The new Act is a result of Bill 100, Supporting Ontario's Trails Act, 2016 which received Royal Assent June 9, 2016. This important Bill resulted in a number of benefits for trail organizations and landowners who support trails.
Supporting Ontario's Trail Act 2016 highlights:
Amendment of the Trespass to Property Act:
This amendment increases fines for trespassing from $2000 to $10,000. It has also removed the limit on the amount that landowners can recover as part of the prosecution for damages caused by trespassers.
Amendment to the Occupiers' Liability Act:
This amendment clarifies the Duty of Care so that its clear landowners do not face additional liabilities when allowing trails across their land.
Creation of the Ontario Trails Act 2016:
This Act will, amongst other things, allow willing landowners and trail groups to work together more easily to secure trail through easements by removing the need for trail organizations to own the adjacent land.
The Bruce Trail Conservancy looks forward to hearing from landowners who are interested in using this piece of legislation to permanently protect the Bruce Trail across their land and receive compensation for doing so.
Note that landowners are under no obligation to provide easements across their land, and may continue to allow trail passage under "handshake agreements", which can be rescinded at any time.
For more information, please contact Antoin Diamond, Director of Land Acquisition and Management at the Bruce Trail Conservancy at 905-529-6821 or 1-800-665-4458 ext. 235.
on the Supporting Ontario's Trails Act 2016 visit:
on the new Ontario Trails Act 2016, visit: