The Township of Muskoka Lakes is proposing changes to two of its by-laws focused on protecting the natural environment during development: the Site Alteration and Tree Preservation by-laws. Most development is regulated by a third by-law — the Site Plan Control by-law — which we encourage the Township to update soon.

The Site Alteration and Tree Preservation by-laws set rules about site alteration, including blasting and tree removal, although they do not apply to lands being developed under a building permit, septic permit or site plan agreement.

The MLA and Friends of Muskoka prepared this commentary with information to help you understand the proposals before completing the survey. We also provided suggestions to the Township in this letter, reminding them of the public’s outcry last year over indiscriminate and excessive site alteration during the development process.

The MLA and Friends of Muskoka encourage you to take the survey to make your views heard on these by-laws that contain tools for protecting our natural environment and the “view from the canoe”. The survey closes on February 25, 2022.