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Ontario Superior Court decision hailed as victory for professional engineers

Professional engineers in Ontario scored a huge victory last week when the Ontario Superior Court of Justice declar...


Professional engineers in Ontario scored a huge victory last week when the Ontario Superior Court of Justice declared that they were not obligated to prove their knowledge of the building code.
The decision means that Professional Engineers of Ontario (PEO) licence holders who work in building design do not have to qualify and register under a Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing regime.
Since January 1, 2006, under the Ontario Building Code Act, new regulations had required professional engineers to qualify and register with the Ministry of Municipal Affairs in order to undertake building design reviews associated with building permit applications.
The past president of PEO, Patrick J. Quinn, P.Eng. was jubilant over the decision. In a press release, he said: “This is a momentous event in our profession’s history and a victory for all self-regulating professions in the province.”
The Ontario court also said that architects would not have to take the building code examinations to prove their competence.
PEO took the cause to court arguing that it was their authority to regulate the practice of the province’s 75,000 professional engineers.
PEO argued that there was no evidence to indicate that it had not been protecting the public in matters of the building code and pointed out that in the last 11 years, more than one million permits had been issued in Ontario, but only 29 complaints had been made about professional engineers by building officials. Of those, 23 had resulted in discipline hearings.
For the full press release, see www.peo.on.ca