Improvement District Governance
Improvement districts are represented by an
elected board of trustees, one of
whom has the additional duty of chair. Each trustee is elected for a three-year
term by the eligible landowners of the improvement district.
The improvement district's Letters Patent, applicable sections of the
Government Act, and other relevant provincial statutes outline the powers that can
be exercised by the board of trustees. These powers include the ability to enact and enforce
its regulations and charges, to assess and collect taxes, to acquire, hold and dispose of
lands, to borrow money and to expropriate lands required to carry out its functions. The
board of trustees exercise these powers through the passage of resolutions and bylaws.
Bylaws and resolutions are similar insofar as they record a decision made by a majority of
the trustees that govern the operation and administration of the improvement district;
however, resolutions differ because they can be effective immediately upon passage whereas
bylaws must be registered with the Inspector of Municipalities before becoming effective.
Although improvement districts are independent public corporations, they are also
subject to supervision by the ministry. In addition to the requirements for bylaws to be
approved by the Inspector, each year the improvement district's audited
financial statements and the minutes of its annual general meeting are reviewed and filed
with the ministry.
In some cases, the board of trustees may decide to establish a committee to undertake
some work on behalf of the board. Persons who are note trustees may be appointed to
the committee in order to obtain input from specific stakeholders. Committees by their nature are advisory
and cannot take action on behalf of the improvement district.
The Local Government Department has developed the
District Manual (235 KB)
as a resource for improvement districts which provides additional information about the topics
on this page.