About Our Governance
The Province of Ontario, through the Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP) – formerly called Ministry of Environment and Climate Change (MOECC), – sets the rules (under the Clean Water Act) and provides ongoing guidance. The Ministry of Environment is also responsible for implementing some of the policies in the Source Protection Plan.
Source Protection Authorities
The Source Protection Authorities had the important role of laying the groundwork for the source protection planning process, including creating the Source Protection Committee, and engaging municipalities in the process of that creation. The Source Protection Authority reviews the work completed by the Source Protection Committee to ensure that it has been carried out in accordance with the Regulations in the Clean Water Act.
The Source Protection Authorities in the South Georgian Bay Lake Simcoe Source Protection Region are:
- Lakes Simcoe and Couchiching/Black River Source Protection Authority (the lead Authority)
- Nottawasaga Valley Source Protection Authority
- Severn Sound Source Protection Authority
Source Protection Committee
The Source Protection Committee is the primary authority for making decisions at the watershed level. The Source Protection Committee is made up of local citizens in the watershed, who applied for that role and were selected by the Source Protection Authority based on a competitive process. In this region, we have 22 members (7 economic representatives, 7 municipal representatives and 7 public sector representatives, plus a member from Chippewas of Rama First Nation), plus a Chair.
Part of the Conservation Authorities’ role is to act as the Source Protection Authority. The Conservation Authority provides staff, expertise, and experience to share information, facilitate cooperation amongst the many agencies involved. They were also responsible for pulling together the Terms of Reference, Assessment Reports and Source Protection Plan, under the guidance of the Source Protection Committee.
In this region, the Conservation Authority partners are:
- Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority
- Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority
- Severn Sound Environmental Association
Although not technically a conservation authority, the Severn Sound Environmental Association acts much like a conservation authority and was given this status by the Ministry to serve in the same manner as a conservation authority.
Municipalities are a key partner in the source protection process and worked closely with the Source Protection Committee and Source Protection Authorities. Municipalities have a primary role of implementing the source protection plan.
In this region there are three indigenous communities: Beausoleil First Nation, Chippewas of Georgina Island First Nation and Chippewas of Rama First Nation. At this time, the Chippewas of Rama First Nation has opted into the source water protection process by passing a Band Council resolution in 2011.