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Planning Appeal Rules

made under S. 12 of the
Utility and Review Board Act
S.N.S. 1992, c. 11
N.S. Reg. 288/92 (December 14, 1992)

1 These rules are made pursuant to Section 12 of the Utility and Review Board Act and apply to any appeals to the Board under the Planning Act.

2 These rules may be cited as the Planning Appeal Rules.

3 In these rules

(a) "Act" means the Planning Act;

(b) "agent" means a person who has been lawfully authorized to act on behalf of the appellant;

(c) "appeal" includes any proceeding, matter or thing that the Board has jurisdiction to hear or determine under the Act;

(d) "appellant" means the person who is appealing to the Board under the Act;

(e) "Board" means the Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board;

(f) "Clerk" means the Clerk of the Board.

(g) "decision" includes a refusal, failure or neglect to make the decision sought;

(h) "person" includes an unincorporated organization.

4 An appeal to the Board shall be by notice in writing.

5 (1) The notice of appeal shall state

(a) the name of the appellant;

(b) the decision appealed from;

(c) the name of the person making the decision;

(d) the date of the decision;

(e) the date that the decision was advertised, if applicable;

(f) a brief summary of the decision;

(g) the grounds of appeal;

(h) the address of the appellant or the name and address of an individual upon whom documents or notices relating to the appeal may be served;

(i) a phone number, if available, at which the appellant or the individual referred to in clause (h) may be reached during normal business hours.

(2) A notice of appeal shall be signed by the appellant or the agent or solicitor acting on behalf of the appellant.

(3) A notice of appeal may be in Form A.

6 Service of the notice of appeal on the Board may be effected by

(a) personal service on a member or employee of the Board;

(b) leaving a copy at the Board's office; or

(c) mailing a copy to the Clerk; or

(d) forwarding a copy to the Clerk via facsimile transmission; provided that the notice of appeal is received by the Board within the time specified in the Act.

7 (1) A notice of appeal shall be accompanied by the written undertaking of the appellant, his solicitor, or his agent, agreeing to pay the costs of advertising the notice of hearing for the appeal.

(2) Where a notice of appeal filed with the Board is not accompanied by the required written undertaking, the Board may extend the time for filing such undertaking provided, however, that such extension of the time shall not exceed 14 days from the date of filing the notice of appeal.

(3) Failure by the appellant, his solicitor, or his agent to file the written undertaking shall not preclude the Board from setting the appeal down for hearing, advertising the notice of hearing, and thereafter recovering the cost of such advertisement from the appellant.

8 When more than one notice of appeal is filed with the Board, arising out of the same decision, or affecting the same matter, the Board may require the several appellants, or their solicitors or agents, to file a joint undertaking agreeing to pay the cost of advertising a notice of hearing.

9 (1) Subject to subsection (2), a notice of appeal may be amended at any time with leave of the Board.

(2) A notice of appeal may not be amended for the purpose of adding appellants.

10 (1) In any appeal, the Board may itself or on the application of any party, request the parties to appear before it for a prehearing conference to consider

(a) the simplification of the issues;

(b) the necessity or desirability of an amendment to the notice of appeal;

(c) the participation by interested persons;

(d) a request for access to information in the custody or control of any party;

(e) any other matter which may aid in the disposition of the appeal.

(2) If agreed to by all parties, a prehearing conference may be conducted by telephone.

11 On the application of any party, the Board may hold a preliminary hearing to

(a) determine any relevant question as to the Board's jurisdiction to hear the appeal;

(b) determine any question as to the admissibility of any evidence;

(c) consider an application for an order dismissing the appeal on the grounds that no appeal lies to the Board;

(d) determine any other matter which may aid in the disposition of the appeal.

12 (1) The member of the Board who presides at a prehearing conference or a preliminary hearing shall not necessarily be required to hear the appeal.

(2) Unless otherwise ordered by the Board, it shall not be necessary to give notice of a preliminary hearing by advertisement in a newspaper.

13 (1) The Clerk, in consultation with the parties, shall attempt to set a date for the hearing of the appeal.

(2) Where the parties cannot reach agreement as to a date, the Chair shall set a date for the hearing.

14 The Clerk shall notify the parties of the date of the hearing.

15 (1) The Board may require the appellant to serve, not later than two weeks before the date of the hearing, such other persons as the Board determines with a copy of the notice of hearing.

(2) Service of the notice of hearing by the appellant may be effected by one or more of the following:

(a) by personal service;

(b) by leaving a copy at the person's proper address;

(c) by sending a copy by ordinary mail addressed to the person at his proper address;

(d) in such other manner as the Board may determine.

(3) Service of the notice of hearing may be proved by affidavit, oral testimony or both.

16 (1) Subject to subsection (2), the Board, either upon its own motion, or upon application of any party, may adjourn a hearing from time to time.

(2) Where an adjournment is requested after the notice of hearing has been published in the newspaper or the appellant has served the notice of hearing, the request for an adjournment shall be considered on its merits at the commencement of the hearing.

17 (1) The municipality which is the respondent to the appeal shall, not later than one week prior to the date of hearing,

(a) file with the Clerk two copies of an appeal record and one copy of the relevant municipal planning strategy, land use by-law, zoning by-law, subdivision by-law or subdivision regulations;

(b) deliver to the appellant and any other party one copy of the appeal record.

(2) An appeal record shall consist of the following:

(a) a table of contents;

(b) the application;

(c) the decision under appeal;

(d) a copy of the advertisements for any public hearing held relating to the subject of the appeal;

(e) a copy of the minutes of any public hearing respecting the subject of the appeal;

(f) a copy of the minutes of any council meeting at which the subject of the appeal was discussed;

(g) A copy of any report, letter, submission, recommendation or other matter respecting the subject of the appeal which was submitted to or was considered by council or the Development Officer, excluding any legal opinion prepared for the municipality.

(3) The pages of the appeal record shall be numbered.

(4) Nothing in this Section shall be deemed to prejudice the right of any party to inspect and obtain copies of any documents prior to the time that the appeal record is to be filed.

(5) In the case of an appeal from a decision of the Provincial Director of Planning or a Provincial Development Officer, the appeal record shall be prepared and filed by the Provincial Director of Planning or the Provincial Development Officer who made the decision.

18 Hearings may be conducted in an informal manner and need not follow the strict rules of practice and procedure required by a court of law.

19 The Board, whenever it deems it desirable, may require briefs to be filed by the parties within such time as the Board may prescribe.

20 The Board may destroy any exhibits remaining in its custody at the expiration of six months from the date of the decision, unless the return of those exhibits is requested by the party filing them, provided no appeal or judicial review of the decision has been commenced.

Form A - Notice of Appeal


Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board

IN THE MATTER OF: An appeal under the Planning Act, R.S.N.S. 1989, c. 346

) State names of
) person(s)
) appealing


TAKE NOTICE that the appellant(s) appeal from a decision ______________ by_______________ located at _______________________ in the County of ________________________ made the _______ day of ___________ , 19___ , which decision:

) State details
) of the decision

AND THAT the grounds of appeal are:


DATED at ____________ , Nova Scotia, this ______ day of ________ 19___.

Appellant, Solicitor or Agent

      (City, Province)
     (Postal code)
Home phone:
Work phone:

Undertaking to Pay Costs

The appellant(s) hereby agrees to pay the costs of any advertising of the notice of hearing for the Appeal.