Job Description

Non Union

Job Title: Senior Development Planner    
Job Opening Id: 29066 # Required: 1
Business Unit: Planning and Development Svcs Division: Planning & Development
Location: Headquarters Campbell West Standard Hours: 35.00 / week
Full/Part Time: Full-Time Regular/Temporary: Regular
Salary Grade: 7 Salary Range: $ 85,770.00 – $100,910.00
Post Date: 2021-07-20 Close Date: 2021-08-02


Planning & Development

About Us

Serving a diverse urban and rural population of more than 430,000, Niagara Region is focused on building a strong and prosperous Niagara. Working collaboratively with 12 local area municipalities and numerous community partners, the Region delivers a range of high quality programs and services to support and advance the well-being of individuals, families and communities within its boundaries.  Nestled between the great lakes of Erie and Ontario, the Niagara peninsula features some of Canada’s most fertile agricultural land, the majesty of Niagara Falls and communities that are rich in both history and recreational and cultural opportunities. Niagara boasts dynamic modern cities, Canada’s most developed wine industry, a temperate climate, extraordinary theatre, and some of Ontario’s most breathtaking countryside. An international destination with easy access to its binational U.S. neighbour New York State, Niagara attracts over 14 million visitors annually, as well as a steady stream of new residents and businesses.

Job Description

Reporting to the Manager Development Planning, the Senior Planner is responsible for leading the pre-consultation and development application review processes with municipalities and developers; reviewing, researching, analyzing, resolving conflict and preparing coordinated comments and reports on a wide range of more complex and politically sensitive development applications, projects and proposals in both urban and rural contexts. Leads and supports a variety of corporate strategic initiatives to implement Council’s Strategic Priorities. Provides independent expert opinion evidence and testimony at tribunals, such as the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal.

• 4 year post-secondary degree in Planning from a CIP accredited planning program or a 4 year degree in a planning-related subject and a Master’s degree in Planning from a CIP accredited planning program.
• An equivalent combination of education, experience and qualifications may be considered.

• A minimum of seven (7) years of progressively responsible, relevant municipal planning experience.
• 2 years supervisory experience.
• 10 years of progressively responsible planning experience in municipal planning is preferred.
• Full membership in the Canadian Institute of Planners (CIP) in good standing.
• Registered Professional Planner (RPP) accreditation, in good standing.
• Sound knowledge of the Planning Act and Regulations, Provincial policies, plans and guidelines, Regional Official Plan, Growth Management, infrastructure planning and environmental assessments and local planning policies.
• Qualified as an expert in planning to provide independent professional opinion before tribunals such as the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal.
• Knowledge of project management norms and practices.
• Ability to lead the procurement of consultants, management of consultant’s work and staff, and financial accountability for project budget for consultant assignment.
Computer applications experience with MS Office (Word, Excel, Access, and Power Point), MS Outlook, application tracking system (e.g. iDarts and AMANDA), MS Project or other Project Tracking Systems and GIS based mapping systems (e.g. Niagara Atlas).
• Knowledge of and seven (7) years of experience with specialized planning studies such as, but not limited to,  archaeology, noise, land use compatibility, agricultural impact assessment, traffic impact studies, site servicing studies, minimum distance separation from agricultural operations, hydrogeological studies, environment and natural heritage (creeks, streams, forest, lakes, birds, bees, Species at Risk etc) is preferred.

1. Leads and manages the review of more complex and politically sensitive development applications and proposed plans and projects, including Planning Act applications, environmental assessments, secondary plans, community improvement plans, development incentive programs, regional and provincial policy, and infrastructure planning initiatives, analyzing to determine compliance with current Provincial and Regional policy, and providing defendable recommendations to Council while meeting the intent of the MOU, legislative timelines and those of the area municipalities.
• Encourages, attends and prepares for pre-consultation with developers and partners to clearly identify and discuss Provincial and Regional issues and required technical studies early in the process.
• Researches and analyzes planning issues and development applications, identifying anomalies, issues and conflicts, based on: current legislation including the Planning Act and Niagara Escarpment Planning and Development Act and relevant regulations, Provincial and Regional Plans and policies (such as the Greenbelt Plan, Niagara Escarpment Plan, Growth Plan for the GGH, NPCA policy and regulation), guidelines (such as, MOE Noise, MDS, MOE D-Series and MTCS Archaeology).   
• Coordinates comments from other divisions, departments, Province and agencies identifying and defining conflicting directions/requirements.
• Initiates discussions on issues at earliest opportunity to determine resolution.
• Offers alternative solutions and advice to customers balancing the needs of multiple stakeholders with legislative requirements and policies.
• Prepares and manages defendable response letters to municipalities summarizing analysis, recommendations and conditions of approval resulting in an independent professional opinion document.
• Prepares and presents reports to Committee and Council for approval and implementation resulting in an independent professional opinion report document.
• Prepares and gives evidence at Local Planning Appeal Tribunal or Environmental Tribunal hearings and other types of quasi-judicial hearings.  Attends review meetings with Region’s legal counsel to provide background information on litigations, attending pre-hearings and other legal hearings, resulting from planning studies and applications as required.  Provides advice to legal counsel during hearing.
• Leads and facilitates the pre-consultation process and meetings with local municipal partners/clients and developers, providing advice on development applications.
• Provides comments on policy projects from an implementation viewpoint (e.g. transportation, environmental, servicing, land use).
• Participates in internal and external teams with respect to special planning studies (new legislation, development policy, community improvement plans, secondary and master plans, etc.) integrating Regional and Provincial matters.
• Leads or supports the review of specialized projects, policies, guidelines and standards to ensure conformity with the Regional Official Plan, provincial legislation, federal legislation, and provincial plans under the Ontario Planning Act. 
• Maintains liaisons and partnerships with area planners and staff of relevant agencies.
• Provides functional guidance to staff and contractors, providing work direction, assigning tasks/projects, determining methods and procedures to be used, resolving problems, and ensuring results are achieved.

2. Supervises the Development Planning customer/municipal facing team responsible for customer service to local municipalities, applicants and agencies on development application reviews, development engineering review and approvals.
• Supervises staff, coordinating and planning work, providing work direction, assigning tasks and projects, determining methods and procedures to be used, monitoring quality of work, resolving problems and ensuring assigned results are achieved.
• Reviews draft Regional comments and letters on preliminary proposals and development applications, discussing analysis of issues and objectives with assigned planner and technician.
• Prioritizes and organizes work of team and identifies work load issues.
• Ensures target timelines for review and commenting are met.
• Hires student/intern and participates in the hiring of other team members.
• Builds and motivates team.
• Hires, and manages specialized consultants (planners, urban designers, scientists, engineers, economists, etc.) on peer reviews related to development applications and projects monitoring activities, quality of work and ensuring deliverables are met in a timely manner.
• Provides guidance and support to Policy Planners and the Planning and Data GIS Administrator and other Division staff relating to development matters.
• Builds and maintains internal and external stakeholder relationships.
• Leads or participates in internal and external committees as required.
• Maintains liaisons and strong partnerships with area planners and staff of relevant agencies.
• Conducts public meetings and open houses, analyzes input, identifies and recommends revisions/changes/updates.

3. Leads and coordinates projects related to preparing development standards and guidelines, developing project plans and conducting research.
• Generates information to be made available to the general public through the Region’s website and various other media.
• Ensures data captured and generated by the development tracking system (iDarts program) is accurate.
• Implements best practices with respect to development review, and ensures the Development Review procedures manual is kept up to date.

4. As a member of the Senior Management Team – Operations:
• contributes to the development of departmental goals, objectives and work program;
• implements and measures departmental directions through team performance objectives and assignments;
• acts in the absence of the Manager Development Planning;
• reviews, comments and implements human resources policies; and
• acts as a conduit for information between SMT and front line staff.

5. Contributes to continuous improvement of processes and service delivery.
• Remains current on new techniques, issues, and legislation affecting community development, providing advice and recommendations on strategies.
• Assists in the management of efficient and effective development review processes and performance reporting (MBN Canada).
• Prepares development guidelines and standards.

• Must maintain ability to travel in a timely manner to other offices, work locations or sites as authorized by the Corporation for business reasons.
• May be required to support emergency operations under the incident management structure, at the direction of the Emergency Operations Centre Director.
• Regional staff strive to enable the strategic priorities of Council and the organization through the completion of their work. Staff carry out their work by demonstrating the corporate values of service, honesty, choice, partnership and respect.

Closing Statement

Uncover the wonder of the Niagara Region and join a team dedicated to meeting tomorrow’s challenges TODAY!

Let us know why you would be an excellent team member by submitting your online application.

We thank all candidates for their interest however, only those candidates selected for an interview will be contacted.

Please apply through the Niagara Region Careers site.

Apply for this position