Municipal Accessibility Advisory Committees advise city councils about how to comply with the requirements of the AODA. Cities with ten thousand (10,000) or more people must have a municipal accessibility advisory committee. In contrast, cities with less than ten thousand (10,000) people do not need a committee. Nonetheless, a small city or town can still create a committee. Alternatively, two or more towns or cities can create a joint accessibility advisory committee. More than half of committee members must be people with disabilities.
Municipal Accessibility Advisory Committees
Municipal accessibility advisory committees advise their city councils about the requirements they must follow under AODA standards. In addition, they suggest ways that cities can implement these rules. Moreover, they also advise city councils on how to complete their accessibility reports.
Furthermore, committees also offer advice about the accessibility of new city buildings or other spaces. For instance, councils must consult committees when building or renovating:
- On-street accessible parking spaces
- Sidewalks and other exterior paths of travel
- Play spaces
- Recreational trails
- Bus stops and shelters
Likewise, cities and towns must consult their committees about how many accessible taxis their community needs.
In addition, the council must seek the committee’s advice about a building that the council:
- Agrees to use as a city building or property, if someone provides it
In addition, the committee reviews building site plans and drawings for new buildings or spaces in the city. The committee must choose site plans or drawings to review, and the council must provide the committee with those plans. However, the AODA does not state what the committee should do if it has concerns about a building or plan. For instance, a committee might find that a building their city wants to lease is inaccessible. Alternatively, a city might have plans to construct a building with features that are not accessible. In these cases, the committee would likely recommend that the city lease a different building or change their building plans. However, the AODA does not explain whether the city must obey the committee’s recommendations.