Legislation Update
August 2020 Charity & NFP Law Update
Published on August 27, 2020

By Terrance S. Carter and Luis R. Chacin

Ontario Bill 195, Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act, 2020

Ontario’s new Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act, 2020 (“ROA-2020”) came into force by proclamation of the Lieutenant Governor in Council on July 24, 2020. With the ROA-2020’s coming into force, the COVID-19 declared emergency under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (“Emergency Act”) is terminated and Ontario Regulation 50/20 Declaration of Emergency is revoked. ROA-2020 continues orders made under sections 7.0.2 and 7.1 of the Emergency Act in relation to COVID-19. On August 20, 2020, continued orders under the ROA-2020 were extended until September 22, 2020, with two exceptions: the Education Sector order was extended only until August 31, 2020 and the Limitation Periods order will end on September 14, 2020, on which date the suspended time periods will resume running.

At this time, all public health units in the province are in Stage 3 and, pursuant to the continued order in Ontario Regulation 364/20 Rules for Areas in Stage 3, social gatherings for weddings, funerals or religious services, rites or ceremonies are still limited to 50 people if the gathering is held indoors (provided the number of persons occupying any room in the building or structure while attending the gathering do not exceed 30 per cent of the capacity of the particular room), or 100 people if the gathering is held outdoors. Also, all persons attending the gathering must comply with public health guidance on physical distancing.

Individuals who fail to comply with an order under the ROA-2020 face a fine of up to $100,000; directors and officers of corporations face fines up to $500,000 and prison terms up to one year; corporations are liable up to a $10,000,000 fine if convicted of failure to comply with an order. Each day of non-compliance with an order is a separate offence, and courts may increase the maximum fines by an amount equal to the financial benefit that was acquired by or that accrued to the non-compliant person as a result of the commission of the offence.

ROA-2020 also provides relief measures for corporations with regard to the statutory time limits for holding annual general meetings and annual reporting deadlines. For additional information see Corporate Update, above. For further details on the ROA-2020 and the continued orders under the act, see COVID-19 Resource for Charities & NFPs: End of COVID-19 Emergency in Ontario under New Reopening Legislation

Ontario Bill 175, Connecting People to Home and Community Care Act, 2020

On July 8, 2020, Ontario’s Bill 175, Connecting People to Home and Community Care Act, 2020 (“CPHCC-2020”) received Royal Assent. As discussed in the February 2020 Charity & NFP Law Update, CPHCC-2020 amends Ontario’s health system intended to modernize the delivery of home and community care services.

CPHCC-2020 has three schedules. Schedule 1 makes a number of changes to the Connecting Care Act, 2019 (“CCA-2019”), replacing references to “integrated care delivery systems” with “Ontario Health Teams”, which is the terminology used for such groups of health care providers and organizations. CPHCC-2020 also opens the door for Ontario Health to authorize a health service provider or Ontario Health Team to govern the funding and oversight of home and community care services. Other changes include expanded investigative and supervisory powers applying to prescribed home and community care services, new enforcement and penalty provisions, and a complaints and appeals process. The complaints and appeals process also came into force when the CPHCC-2020 received Royal Assent. Schedule 2 of the CPHCC-2020 amends the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care Act to maintain the Minister’s power to enter into agreements with Indigenous organizations to provide for home and community care services for Indigenous communities. This power and right currently exists under the Home Care and Community Services Act, 1994, which Schedule 3 of the CPHCC-2020 repeals as of the date of Royal Assent. Schedule 3 also makes consequential amendments to other healthcare legislation. Except as otherwise noted, most provisions enacted by CPHCC-2020 will come into force at a future date by proclamation of the Lieutenant Governor.

Read the August 2020 Charity & NFP Law Update