Municipal Licensing and Standards (MLS) provides bylaw administration and enforcement services to the City of Toronto. MLS deliverables include By-Law Enforcement services with targeted strategies to address graffiti, noise, business inspections, parks regulations and animal services issues and include Business Licensing and Permitting, Property Standards, including inspection and owner compliance; and Animal Care including control, sheltering and adoption services.

Budget Notes

Municipal Licensing and Standards contributes to the safety, vibrancy and maintenance of our communities by being a leader in the professional delivery of by-law enforcement, administration and animal care services to the City of Toronto.

Municipal Licensing & Standards (ML&S) provides bylaw administration and enforcement services for private property maintenance and use, community standards including signs, noise, waste, parks and regulated businesses. Other services include Business Licensing and Permitting and Animal Care control, sheltering and adoption services.

2018 Budget Summary

The total cost to deliver these services to Toronto residents is $57.001 million gross and $20.064 million net.

Given the application of inflationary increases to user fee rates, the Program is able to fully offset $0.308 million in net operating budget pressures arising mainly from increased salary and benefit costs while maintaining 2017 service levels for 2018 and moving forward with two new initiatives.

Fast Facts

  • ML&S has 12 district offices including Licensing, Bylaw Enforcement, Investigation and Animal Services (including animal shelters) across the City.
  • 75,000 Property Standards inspections with 70% conducted in 5 days & 75% resolved within 60 days.
  • 95,151 Business licenses and permits, (new & renewed).
  • 80,000 dog and cat licenses, with an 80% renewal rate and 55% completed online.
  • 1 CHIP Truck for micro-chipping and licensing, 1 mobile Spay/Neuter Truck.


  • The efficiency of conducting pet license applications on-line is demonstrated by the growing % of applications being completed using this service since 2014.
  • It is anticipated that this trend will continue in 2018 with on-line pet license applications expected to increase to 60%.
  • ML&S is prioritizing on-line services to provide user-friendly services to the public such as self-management of pet owner profile, immediate issuance of donor tax receipts through email and streamlined pet licensing process for multiple pets.

Key Service Deliverables for 2018

The 2018 Operating Budget will enable the Program to:

By-law Enforcement

  • Secure substantive prosecution outcomes and advance escalated enforcement initiatives related to non-compliant businesses.
  • Respond to community nuisance complaints related to waste enforcement and focus on conduct in City Parks.
  • Implement proactive waste diversion enforcement on multi-residential properties to support the City’s objective of increasing waste diversion rates for multi-occupancy buildings.
  • Continue coordination with the Toronto Police Service and Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario on priority locations.

Business Licensing and Permitting

  • Implement administrative and enforcement efficiency including on-line access for all business licence types.
  • Implement Short Term Rentals by-laws.
  • Implement pilots to streamline service delivery, including Provincial and Federal collaboration for the Restaurant industry.

Property Standards, Inspection & Compliance

  • Continued implementation of the RentSafeTO and Apartment Building Standards Program.
  • Update bylaws to reflect community concerns and eliminate redundancy/conflict with other statutes.
  • Develop alternative resolution options to manage neighbour disputes. Develop resolution plans for problem properties such as those that are vacant/derelict or hoarded.
  • Enhance service delivery by collaborating with other Divisions and Agencies (i.e. SPIDER).

Animal Care, Control, Management & Sheltering

  • Manage the increasing number of dangerous dogs through enhanced bylaws, enforcement and prosecutions. Introduce education programs on dog bite prevention and responsible dog ownership.
  • Improve live outcome rates by expanding partnerships with humane societies and animal rescue groups and sterilization initiatives.
  • Establish programs to increase adoption rates through behavioral assessments and training programs.

Deliver low-cost rabies immunization for pets through partnerships with Toronto Public Health.

Our Key Issues & Priority Actions

  • Modernization of Bylaws and Business Processes.
    • Bylaws governing licensing, animals, property standards and maintenance will be updated to reflect community concerns and eliminate redundancy/conflict with other statutes.
    • Alternative resolution options will be developed to manage neighbour and other disputes on certain issue types.
    • Continue to review user fees through the modernization of bylaws to ensure identification of full cost, with recommendations on the level of cost recovery based on the service provided.
  • Short-Term Rentals Regulations
    • The 2018 Operating Budget includes funding of $0.77 million and associated revenues to manage growth in this industry with a new bylaw including registration and licensing.
  • Holistic Centres and Body Rub Parlours
    • The 2018 Operating Budget includes funding of $0.68 million for the enforcement of bylaws for this industry. This includes 5 additional staff.

2018 Operating Budget Highlights

  • The 2018 Operating Budget for ML&S is $56.743 million gross and $19.382 million net representing $0 increase to the 2017 Approved Operating Budget. The Program met the budget target established by Council. The 2018 budget reflects the following:
    • Base expenditure increases ($2.4 million).
    • Revenue increases ($2.4 million).
    • User fee funded New & Enhanced ($1.2 million)
  • Staff complement will increase by 13 to 492.5 from 2017 to 2018.
  • New and enhanced funding of ($1.5 million) for :
    • Enforcement of Holistic Centres and Body Rub Parlours.
    • New Short-term Rentals Regulations.
  • The 2018 Operating Budget provides funding for:
    • The operation of 12 district offices, supporting 75,000 property inspections and the issuance of 137,000 licenses & permits.

Municipal Licensing and Standards 2018 Budget Infographic
Municipal Licensing & Standards Infographic