April 3, 2024, Eastern Ontario – The Eastern Ontario Wardens' Caucus (EOWC) supports the Minister of Energy, Todd Smith on his announcement regarding the Keeping Energy Costs Down Act, 2024. The proposed act will promote the long-term viability and success of eastern Ontario by keeping construction costs down while working towards a net zero energy system in Ontario. The legislation will ensure stakeholder engagement is increased and regulatory decisions will include considerations that contribute to social and economic outcomes.

Eastern Ontario is experiencing significant growth, which requires the gas pipeline network to expand. Current thresholds result in delays in natural gas access for development sites in rural municipalities. This legislation will expedite critical infrastructure projects, ensuring continued growth and prosperity in rural communities.

“The EOWC is pleased to see the move toward modernizing regulations that cause unnecessary delays and costs. Our region continues to see significant growth and pressures to build. This legislation will get shovels in the ground and support rural opportunities," said EOWC Chair Peter Emon.

By modernizing outdated regulations, delays and costs for economic development initiatives will be reduced, benefiting industries seeking to establish or expand in Ontario, transit projects, community expansion, housing developments, and low-carbon fuel blending.

This proposed legislation and the EOWC’s strong support comes following a meeting with Parliamentary Assistant, Stéphane Sarrazin, at the January 2024 Rural Ontario Municipal Association Conference around modernizing the construction approval process as a critical EOWC priority.

About the EOWC

The EOWC is the regional voice for 103 municipalities across rural eastern Ontario, representing one quarter of Ontario’s municipalities. The EOWC is an incorporated non-profit organization representing 800,000 residents covering an area of 50,000 square kilometres from Northumberland County to the Québec border. The EOWC has gained support and momentum by speaking with a united voice to champion regional municipal priorities and work with the government, business leaders, the media, and the public. For more information, visit eowc.org. 

Media Contacts:

Elected officials:   

Peter Emon, 2024 Chair, EOWC (Warden of Renfrew County)



Bonnie Clark, 2024 Vice-Chair, EOWC (Warden of Peterborough County)




Meredith Staveley-Watson, Manager of Government Relations and Policy, EOWC