June 2017 Edition

Construction in Ontario Newsletter


The Council of Ontario Construction Associations (COCA) is a federation of construction associations; the largest and most representational group of industrial, commercial and institutional (ICI) and heavy civil construction employers in Ontario. Our member organizations represent more than 10,000 construction businesses and more than 400,000 employees.
As industry advocate, COCA brings the concerns of our members to the attention of Queen's Park and works with the government to ensure that Ontario's legislative landscape is one in which our industry can grow and prosper. 
AG Naqvi Makes Good on Promise

As promised, on Wednesday, May 31, 2017, the Attorney General of Ontario Yasir Naqvi rose in the Ontario legislature to table Bill 142, Construction Lien Amendment Act 2017.  Minister Naqvi promised and he has delivered and for this he should be thanked and congratulated.

The Bill modernizes the Construction Lien Act, introduces interim adjudication of disputes to keep projects moving ahead and it prescribes a payment regime so that general and trade contractors and their suppliers get paid in a fair and timely way.  The Bill is true to "Striking the Balance: Expert Review of Ontario's Construction Lien Act" the very thorough report produced by Bruce Reynolds and Sharon Vogel after almost 18 months of consultations with stakeholders and their panel of experts. 

An excellent summary of Bill 142 developed by our Construction Lien Act Task Force Chair, Ted Dreyer (a COCA Director, also a Director with the GVCA and a construction lawyer with the Kitchener firm Madorin Snyder LLP) is available on COCA's website at

Moving forward, if the Bill is to be passed into law before the end of the fall 2017 session of the legislature, which opens on September 11th, adjourns on December 14th and includes a maximum of only 48 sitting days, it must pass second reading and be referred to a standing committee of the legislature very early in the session.  

The standing committee to which the Bill is referred will have to make this Bill a high priority among all the other Bills that may have already been referred to it.  The committee will convene public hearings and conduct a clause-by-clause review and possibly consider amendments.  The Committee will have to deal with the Bill expeditiously and report it back to the legislature for third reading and Royal Assent.  

At the same time, the professional staff within the Ministry of the Attorney General must draft all the regulations that give legs to the Bill and allow it to be implemented.  The Bill cannot come into effect until all the regulations have been drafted and approved.  So there is a lot of work yet to be done. 

Minister Naqvi made good on his promise to introduce this Bill before the end of the spring 2017 session.  Because he is also the Government House Leader in charge of the agenda of the legislature, I am cautiously optimistic he can move it through the legislative process to make it the law by the end of 2017.
COCA's Construction Lien Act Task Force has already met to discuss Bill 142 and to develop their plan for providing feedback to Minister Naqvi before the end of summer.   

June MoL Report to PLMHSC

In his report to the Provincial Labour-Management Health and safety Committee, the Provincial Co-ordinator for the Ministry of Labour's Construction Health and Safety Program, Brian Barron, made the following points:
  • there was one fatality in the month of May 2017.  The fatality occurred when a worker fell approximately 25 feet while working on the trusses of a barn
  • there have been seven fatalities in the construction industry in the first five months of 2017 versus only four last year
  • the Ministry of Labour recently expanded its definition of "critical injury" and the new definition captures more types of injuries than the previous definition so a comparison of current data with last year's is not a true comparison.  With that qualifier, there were thirteen critical injuries in May 2017.  Eight were the result of falls. One incident involved critical injuries to two workers.  There have been 88 critical injuries so far this year versus 40 last year
  •  Employers have the duty to ensure that the fall protection system selected is appropriate to protect the worker for the particular job or scenario that the worker is exposed to. The employer also has the duty to ensure that the workers understand the differences between the methods of fall protection and how to apply them to provide the greatest level of protection in-line with the hierarchy of fall protection.
  • Falls continue to be the #1 cause of traumatic fatalities in the construction industry. We need to continuously improve how we educate and promote the consistent and appropriate use of fall protection systems in our industry
Can the Rumour be True?

We first heard the rumour from an NDP member of the legislature a couple of months ago and then from another not long thereafter.  More recently conservative MPPs have been spreading it.  And lately it's been speculated in the mainstream media.  Can it be true?  Will Premier Wynne prorogue the legislature and call a snap election?  Our guess is that she will stick to the fixed election date in June 2018.  Why?
  • Calling a snap election didn't exactly work out the way British PM Elizabeth May expected in their recent election.  After calling a snap election and hoping to win a much larger mandate to buoy her position in Brexit negotiations, May's government was reduced to minority status
  • It didn't work for Liberal Premier David Peterson when he called a snap election back in 1990 and was thrown out of office and succeeded by Bob Rae's NDP
  • While the Liberals have enjoyed a very small bump up in popularity in some of the recent polls it's not an upward trend yet for the Grits, they still have a lot of work to do
  • The Liberals still  have candidates to nominate in numerous ridings across the province
Our guess is that the Premier will stick it out, pass her workplace legislation among other things, outflank the NDP on the left and contest the general election next June.  However, it's possible that she might not recall the legislature in the spring of 2018 to let the unofficial  campaigning begin. 
CCA Makes Minor Step Forward With PSPC & DCC on Payment Issues

As of June 8, 2017, Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC) and Defence Construction Canada will begin publishing payment information on their websites for all construction contracts of over $100,000.

This initiative is the product of a joint government-industry working group, composed of PSPC, Defence Construction Canada and the Canadian Construction Association. The working group is also considering other measures to support timely payment in the construction industry, such as potential improvements to payment terms and contractual holdbacks.

Click here for information about CCA, PSPC and DCC joint initiative on Prompt Payment,

Click here for the PSPC press release

Click here for DCC's commitment to prompt payment. 
Vacancies on OCoT Construction Trade Boards

The College of Trades Appointments Council is responsible for appointing qualified individuals to serve on the Ontario College of Trades governance framework.  This includes the College's Board of Governors, the Divisional Boards (construction, motive power, industrial and service), the Trade Boards and the Roster of Adjudicators. 
The Appointments Council is currently soliciting applications from active employers for the following construction Trade Boards:
  • One employer position on the HVAV Trade Board
  • One employer position on the Sheet Metal Trade Board
  • Two employer positions on the Drywall Trade Board 
The Appointments Council is seeking active employers who:
  • support the College and its duty to protect the public interest
  • view issues and solutions objectively
  • know the needs of their trade or trade sector
  • think strategically
  • reflect the diversity of Ontario (i.e., English/French duality, gender balance, various geographic areas, as well as unions and non-unions and small and large businesses).
  Trade Boards are comprised of 4 to 12 members with an equal number of employer and employee representatives.  The duties and responsibilities of Trade Boards include the following:
  • Advise the applicable Divisional Board on issues relating to the trade or group of trades for which they were established
  • Oversee the development of apprenticeship training standards, curriculum standards, examinations and other related training and certification material
  • Consider advice and recommendations from employers, journeypersons and apprentices who work in the trade for which they were established
Active employers who want to play a role in shaping the future of their trade    and who want to participate in the growth and evolution of their trade should:
  • Visit the Appointments Council website at
  • Review position descriptions
  • Complete the application form
  • Submit your resume, along with your completed application form via email or mail 
OCoT Board Announces Tsubouchi Retirement

On June 8, 2017 the Board of Governors of the Ontario College of Trades announced that Registrar & CEO David Tsubouchi will be retiring once his successor has been hired. 

David has provided the College with strong leadership over the past four years and his accomplishments are many.  He has been accessible to stakeholders and responsive. 

Congratulations David on your successful tenure at OCoT and very best wishes in the next chapter!
Skills Ontario ED Wins Chair's Award

The Ontario College of Trades recently announced the recipients of its first annual Chair's Award of Excellence and to no one's surprise Skills Ontario's Executive Director Gail Smyth was among them.  

Gail was recognized for developing programs which elevate apprenticeships and skilled trades careers, including the Skills Ontario skilled trades competition (held this year for the first time in Toronto), the Skills Works summer camps and the in-school presentations program. Gail was also recognized for her development of initiatives geared towards the inclusion of First Nations, M├ętis, Inuit and young women.

Click here for the full list of award recipients.
Another PC By Election Victory

Chalk another one up for Patrick Brown; mark another by election victory in the Tory's "win" column.  Believe it or not, the Conservatives took the provincial by election in Sault Ste Marie, a seat they have not held since 1981.  And they didn't just eke out a victory, they trounced the competition, winning approximately 40% of the votes cast versus about 33% for the NDP and 23% for the Liberals.  

The remaining vote percentages were spread among four other candidates including Znoneofthe, Above.  The result was a disaster for the Liberals who held the seat until their Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services, David Orazietti, resigned in December 2016 to take a Deanship at Sault College.  It was also a debacle for the NDP who with few exceptions have a stranglehold on the North. 
Of the seven by elections that have been held since Patrick Brown was elected leader of the Ontario PCs, the PC's have won five:
  • Simcoe North where Brown himself was the PC candidate - a HOLD for the PCs
  • Whitby-Oshawa won by Lorne Coe - a HOLD for the PCs
  • Scarborough-Rouge River won by Raymond Cho - a TAKE from the Liberals
  • Niagara West-Glanbrook won by Sam Oosterhoff  - a HOLD for the PCs
  • Sault Ste Marie won by - a TAKE from the Liberals
The Liberals have won two:
  • Sudbury won by Glenn Thibeault - a TAKE from the NDP who had taken the riding from the LIBs just 5 months earlier
  • Ottawa-Vanier won by Nathalie Des Rothiers - a HOLD for the LIBs
The NDP have been shut out in interim contests.  
Congratulations to Vince Versace

We would like to pass along our congratulations to Vince Versace who on June 11th celebrated his 10th anniversary with ConstructConnect (the Daily Commercial News and the Journal of Commerce).  Vince has been a tremendous asset at the DCN keeping the industry well informed and up-to-date and he is a pleasure to work with.  Congratulations Vince!
Brown Names Romano Critic for Ring of Fire

Ontario PC Leader Patrick Brown recently announced that Ross Romano, who was elected as the MPP for Sault Ste Marie in a by election on June 1st, will serve as the PC critic for Northern Ontario Jobs and the Ring of Fire.  Romano, a contemporary of Brown's at the University of Windsor Law School, has resigned from his position as a member of the Sault Ste Marie City Council and will be sworn-in officially as a member of the Ontario Legislature within the next few weeks. 

In announcing Romano's critic role, Brown also expanded the responsibilities of MPP Norm Miller who is now the critic for northern development and mines and natural resources and forestry.
Changing Faces of Construction Association Staff Leadership

It seems the face of construction association leadership is changing as there are a number of new senior staffers already in place with more to come.  Among the new association staff leaders already in place are:
  • Mike Carter at the London District Construction Association
  • Darryl Stewart at Ontario Sheet Metal Contractors Association
  • Brandon Pageau at Mechanical Contractors Association of Ontario
  • Gene Stodolak at the Niagara Construction Association
  • Wayne Peterson, who retired from OSMCA, has taken on the role of ED at the Construction Employers Coordinating Council of Ontario (CECCO)
We congratulate these new construction association staff leaders and wish them the very best with the challenges and opportunities they will confront in their new positions. 
There are also a number of changes coming up including the following:
  • Sean Strickland recently resigned his position as CEO of the Ontario Construction Secretariat (OCS) to take on a role in business development with Pomerleau so the OCS is currently in the process of recruiting a new staff leader
  • Craig Moore recently announced that he will be retiring from the ED role with Ontario Association of Demolition Contractors effective sometime later this summer and Margaret Taylor will be taking over from Craig
  • Following the sad passing of Architectural Glass and Metal Contractors Association ED Dennis Haatvedt, that association is now in the process of recruiting a senior staff leader
  • Construction Labour Relations of Ontario GM Joe Keyes has informed his board of directors that he would like to ease off a little bit so the CLRAO board has begun to consider identifying  someone to eventually succeed Joe
  • We also understand that Canadian Construction Association President & CEO Michael Atkinson plans to retire after more than 25 years at the helm of Canada's national construction federation, in about one year's time.
New on the COCA Website
  • New workplace legislation could generate 'unintended consequences' for construction 
  • Ontario Adds 19,900 Jobs in May  
  • Province Proposes 10 days of Personal Emergency Leave, Includes Two Days of Paid Leave 
  • Prompt payment progress highlighted during CCA spring board meeting  
  • Ontario adopting 16 recommendations to prevent injuries, fatalities in construction  
  • Backgrounder: Proposed Updates to the Construction Lien Act 
  • Prompt Payment Ontario Congratulates Government on Introduction of Prompt Payment Legislation  
  • New Legislation Would Address Payment Delay and Improve Dispute Resolution Process 
  • Proposed Changes to Ontario's Employment and Labour Laws  
  • $15 Minimum Wage and Equal Pay for Part-Time and Full-Time Workers Part of Plan to Help People Get Ahead in a Changing Economy 
  • Statement from Minister Flynn on the Release of the Changing Workplaces Review Final Report  
  • Naqvi tells COCA delegation lien act bill to be tabled by June 
  • Making Workplace Pension Plans More Sustainable 
  • Province Passes Balanced Budget to Support a Stronger, Healthier Ontario
COCA is the voice of our membership at
Queen's Park. 

We want to hear from you.  All questions, ideas and comments are more than welcome.


Council of Ontario Construction Associations

180 Dundas Street West, Suite 2001

Toronto, ON    M5G 1Z8



COCA Staff


Ian Cunningham x224 


Operations & Communications Manager

Martin Benson x222 

In This Issue
AG Naqvi Makes Good on Promise
June MoL Report to PLMHSC
Can the Rumour be True?
CCA Makes Minor Step Forward
Vacancies on OCoT Construction Trade Boards
OCoT Board Announces Tsubouchi Retirement
Skills Ontario ED Wins Chair's Award.
Another PC By Election Victory
Congratulations to Vince Versace
Changing Faces of Construction Association Staff Leadership
New on the COCA Website
Memo from the Honourable Bob Chiarelli
Sherrard Kuzz Logo
Let's Talk About Sex!

Workplace Indecencies and Indiscretions
Workplace indecencies and indiscretions, particularly of a sexual nature, can have catastrophic consequences for an employer. Not only do these types of infractions often attract high profile (and unwanted) media attention, they also risk the degradation of workplace morale, company reputation and, by extension, business productivity and success. Join us as we identify issues and best practices relating to sexual harassment, workplace romance and off-duty conduct.
This free breakfast seminar will be held on Wednesday September 27, 2017, at 
Hazelton Manor, 99 Peelar Road, Vaughan, ON L4K 1A3.  

Details, including how to register, can be found on the back page of our newsletter and on our website at

 Pinchin Complimentary Sessions 
Pinchin Ltd. offers  FREE learning opportunities across the province each month.  To see a list click here.

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