Frontenac County Warden Denis Doyle, Ontario Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing Steve Clark, and South Frontenac Mayor Ron Vandewal

Frontenac County Warden Denis Doyle and Township of South Frontenac Mayor Ron Vandewal met with Ontario Minister of Municipal Affairs Steve Clark in Ottawa, Wednesday. The discussion centered around how a plan for communal services in Frontenac could help to make housing more affordable here and in other rural areas of Ontario that are not served by municipal water and sewer systems.

Communal services are shared drinking water and wastewater systems that service clusters of residences and businesses. As it stands now, residences either need to be on municipal systems, which are cost prohibitive for most rural municipalities, or on private septic and well which limits development.

Since 2018, the County and Township have taken a leadership role in Eastern Ontario to promote the use of communal services to support broader, more affordable housing choices in rural regions to meet critical needs, such as seniors’ housing. The delegation asked for funding to establish a municipally owned regional utilities corporation that would oversee communal water and sewage systems.

“We laid it all out for Minister Clark who said he is impressed with the range of our proposed projects in Marysville, Verona, and Sharbot Lake,” says Frontenac County Warden Denis Doyle. “We’ve been working on this idea for four years now and we’re confident that it is a game-changer for new development in Frontenac and across rural Ontario. We’re hopeful that Minister Clark and the Government of Ontario will support the idea in Frontenac and champion it at Queen’s Park for other rural municipalities.”

“With the government’s support, the communal services approach could quickly make way for more than 300 mixed-use and affordable housing units in Sharbot Lake, Verona, and Marysville,” says Township of South Frontenac Mayor Ron Vandewal. “Only a fraction of that number of homes could be built without communal services and government support. We are confident that this initiative will change our ability to meet the need for affordable housing in South Frontenac and the Frontenacs.”

To learn more about communal water and wastewater services in Frontenac click here. Wednesday’s meeting was part of the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) 2022 Conference.


Media Contact:

Matt Mills, Communications Officer: 

Laurie Swinton, Executive Assistant and Communications Officer, Township of South Frontenac
613-376-3027 ext.2260, 



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