Municipal Affairs and Environment

Appeals - Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What can I appeal?
  2. Are there decisions I can’t appeal?
  3. How do I file an appeal?
  4. How much time do I have to file an appeal?
  5. How many Appeal Boards are there?
  6. How much does it cost to file an appeal?
  7. What happens when I file an appeal?
  8. If I register an appeal today, when can I expect the Board to hear it?
  9. When will I be notified of my hearing date?
  10. Where will my hearing be held?
  11. Do I have to attend my hearing?
  12. What happens if I can’t attend my hearing?
  13. Can the Board proceed with the hearing in my absence?
  14. What can I expect at my hearing?
  15. Are Appeal Hearings recorded?
  16. What can the Appeal Board decide?
  17. Will I receive the outcome of my appeal at the Hearing?
  18. If the appeal decision is in my favour, will I get my money back?
  19. If I am unsatisfied with the Board’s decision, what options are available?
  20. Can I withdraw my appeal?
  21. Is the appeal fee refundable?

1. What can I appeal?

You may appeal the following issues:

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2. Are there decisions I can’t appeal?

The Appeal Board does not have the authority to hear matters resulting from the following:

  • Council decisions regarding proposed amendments (re-zoning) to a Municipal Plan and/or Development Regulations;
  • Council recommendations for the acquisition of Crown land;
  • Municipal operations (snow clearing, garbage collection, water and sewer services, etc.).

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3. How do I file an appeal?

You must submit the following to the Secretary to the Regional Appeal Boards when you file your appeal:

  • Appeal Form
  • Written grounds for your appeal
  • A summary or copy of the decision that you are appealing
  • Appeal fee ($200.00 plus HST)

You can mail or deliver your appeal to:

The Secretary to the Regional Appeal Boards

Department of Municipal Affairs and Environment
Howley Building, Higgins Line
St. John's, NL
A1B 4J6
Tel: (709) 729-3090
Fax: (709) 729-3923

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4. How much time do I have to make an appeal?

Once you have received your decision, you have fourteen (14) calendar days to appeal the decision to the applicable Appeal Board.

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5. How many Appeal Boards are there?

There are four (4) Regional Appeal Boards:

  • Central Newfoundland Regional Appeal Board
  • Eastern Newfoundland Regional Appeal Board
  • West Newfoundland Regional Appeal Board
  • Labrador Regional Appeal Board

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6. How much does it cost to file an appeal?

The cost to register an appeal is $200 plus HST ($230 in total). Cheques and money orders are payable to the Newfoundland Exchequer Account. You may also pay using a credit card by calling the Central Cashier’s office at (709)729-4071 or (709)729-3042. Please note, in order to register your appeal, proof of payment must accompany your appeal form.

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7. What happens when I file an appeal?

The Secretary to the Regional Appeal Boards will issue a letter to you acknowledging receipt of your appeal. The Secretary will notify the Authority (municipal council or Service NL) and request records and information regarding the decision being appealed. The Secretary will also inform the Authority of section 45(1) of the Urban and Rural Planning Act, 2000 which requires all work related to the development under appeal to stop pending a decision of the Board. Information submitted will become part of a public appeal process and is managed in accordance with the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act, 2015.

A formal notice of the time, date, and place for the hearing will be provided to all parties to the appeal through registered mail.

A professional land use planner who serves the Appeal Boards as Technical Advisor will review all documentation and prepare a report regarding the appeal that will be entered as evidence at the Appeal Hearing.

Prior to your hearing, the Secretary will provide you with a consolidated copy of all submissions from the appellant(s), the authority, the technical advisor to the Board, and any interested parties.

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8. If I register an appeal today, when can I expect the Board to hear it?

The Board hears appeals in the order they are received. Typically, it takes two to four months from the time an appeal is registered. However, depending on the number of pending appeals with each Board, that time frame may vary.

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9. When will I be notified of my hearing date?

The Secretary to the Appeal Boards will notify you at least seven (7) days prior to the date of your hearing via registered mail.

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10. Where will my hearing be held?

Appeals are heard in a central location for the Board and the communities involved.

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11. Do I have to attend my hearing?

All parties are encouraged to attend the hearing to ensure a fair hearing is obtained. Attending the hearing allows all parties with the opportunity to provide evidence to the Board in person.

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12. What happens if I can’t attend my scheduled hearing?

If you cannot attend your hearing, please consider the following options:

  • You may participate via teleconference. Please contact the Secretary for more details regarding this option.
  • You may have a representative attend the hearing on your behalf.
  • If you cannot attend your hearing and you do not wish to avail of the above two options, then you may contact the other parties to the appeal to see if they would agree to a postponement. If a postponement is not agreed upon by all parties prior to the hearing, then your request for a postponement must go before the Board on the date that your appeal is scheduled. The Secretary does not have the authority to postpone appeal hearings when all parties are not agreeable to a postponement.

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13. Can the Board proceed with the hearing in my absence?

If either the appellant(s) or the authority are absent at a hearing, the Board has discretion to decide whether or not to proceed with the hearing.

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14. What can I expect at my hearing?

As the appellant(s) or the authority, you will be asked to make a presentation to the Board. Any interested parties may present to the Board as well. A detailed account of how a hearing is run is outlined in section 10 of the Rules of Procedure, 1994. Generally, the appellant(s) will present first, followed by the authority and then any interested persons will present to the Board last. The Board may ask questions along the way.

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15. Are appeal hearings recorded?

Yes. The Secretary is responsible for recording each hearing. Anyone interested in obtaining a copy of a hearing may request the recording from the Secretary.

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16. What can the Appeal Board decide?

The Board considers how and why the Authority made the decision under appeal. In doing so, the Board reviews whether the Authority complied with all applicable legislation, policies and regulations when it made the decision under appeal.

The Board may confirm, reverse or vary the decision appealed and may impose those conditions that the board considers appropriate in the circumstances and may direct the council, regional authority or authorized administrator to carry out its decision or make the necessary order to implement its decision.

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17. How will I be notified of the Board’s Decision?

The Board considers all the evidence at the Hearing and endeavors to provide a written decision to all parties within twenty-one (21) days of the hearing. Previous Board’s decisions can be found HERE.

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18. If the Board’s decision is in my favour, will I get my money back?

In its decision, the Board may order an amount equal to the appeal registration fee be paid to the appellant by the Authority (e.g. Town or City Council/Service NL).

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19. If I am unsatisfied with the Board's decision, what options do I have?

You may appeal the Board’s decision to the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador within ten (10) days of the appellant receiving the decision.

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20. Can I withdraw my appeal?

Yes. If you would like to withdraw your appeal you may do so by contacting the Secretary to the Appeal Boards.

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21. Is the appeal fee refundable?

No. The appeal filing fee is non-refundable.

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