OPP reviewing requests for police investigation into Ford government’s Greenbelt plans

By Richard Southern and Michael Talbot

Ontario Provincial Police tell CityNews that its Anti-Rackets branch has received requests to investigate the Doug Ford government’s plans to open up parts of the Greenbelt for development.

The OPP says it is currently reviewing those requests to determine if there are grounds for an investigation.

The requests reportedly come from environmental groups and members of the public.

A spokesperson for Premier Ford tells CityNews: “No one in the Premier’s office or any member of the government has been contacted, and no documents have been requested by OPP on this matter.”


The province says the move to allow development is necessary to reach its goal of building 1.5 million homes over the next 10 years, saying new home construction would begin on Greenbelt lands no later than 2025, with significant progress on approvals by the end of 2023.

RELATED: Integrity commissioner asked to investigate Doug Ford’s Greenbelt development plan

While taking space from the existing Greenbelt, the government is also proposing to add 9,400 acres to different areas, making the overall footprint of the Greenbelt 2,000 acres larger.

Environmental advocates have strongly condemned the Ford government’s plan.

Ontario created the Greenbelt in 2005 to protect agricultural and environmentally sensitive lands in the Greater Golden Horseshoe area from development.

Public backlash in 2018 prompted Ford to backtrack on an election pledge to allow housing development in the Greenbelt, with him promising he would maintain the protected area in its entirety.

A previous version of this article linked the re-zoning of Greenbelt land to the government’s passing of Bill 23, the “More Homes Built Faster Act.” That reference has been removed as changes to the Greenbelt are part of a separate, non-legislative process.

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