Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority

Seeking committee applicants

Drinking water source protection authority seeks applicants to fill three available seats on local source protection committee

A local source protection authority has issued a notice calling for applications to fill three vacant seats on a committee that is protecting municipal sources of drinking water. 

The Ausable Bayfield Maitland Valley Drinking Water Source Protection Committee (SPC) is a 15-member committee in addition to the Chair. The committee reduces risk to drinking water in the Maitland Valley and Ausable Bayfield source protection areas. The SPC does this by putting into action locally developed and provincially approved source protection plans. The Ausable Bayfield Source Protection Authority (SPA), on behalf of the source protection region, is seeking applications from individuals to fill two vacant committee seats from the Economic – Agriculture sector and one vacancy for a committee member from the Other – Environmental public interest sector.

The source protection authority issued the call for applications on August 15, 2017. Applications (cover letter and résumé), with position title clearly marked, are to be submitted by Monday, September 25, 2017 by 4 p.m. local time to be considered. For a summary of member obligations, job description, and full posting visit: After the closing of the application period, the source protection authority will then interview a short list of candidates.

Source Protection Committee Chair Matt Pearson said a committee member’s work is interesting and important. “We have benefitted from the expertise, knowledge and commitment of our past and current members,” he said. “We have three committee seats that are vacant at this time. We are looking for strong candidates to take on these vital roles as committee members.” It’s important to find the right people who can bring their knowledge and questions to the table, according to Pearson. “This helps to improve the work we do to implement, monitor, and update policies that are reducing risk to our local drinking water,” he said. “It helps to keep our drinking water safe and clean, starting at the source.”

The Ausable Bayfield Maitland Valley Source Protection Committee was Ontario’s first. The Ausable Bayfield Maitland Valley SPC has worked since 2007 to create local terms of reference, assessment reports, and source protection plans. This work is made possible by the Ontario Clean Water Act, 2006. The Province of Ontario approved the locally developed plans on January 19, 2015 and the plans took effect on April 1, 2015. The source protection plans include policies to address 21 activities that can pose a threat to municipal drinking water sources in certain circumstances (for example, in certain locations such as municipal wellhead protection areas and in certain quantities). 

The make-up of the committee is shaped by the source protection committee regulation (Ontario Regulation 288/07) and by a local process that took place to decide how to include diverse voices at the committee table. One third of the committee is from municipalities. One third of the committee (five members) comes from economic sectors. Locally, three of those five economic member seats are from agriculture and the other two are from industry and commerce, including tourism. The other third of the committee represents Other – Environmental, Health, and other interests of the general public (including property owner association representation; public representation from the two source protection areas; and environmental sector representatives).

To find out more visit and You may also call Geoffrey Cade, Program Supervisor, at 519-235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610 or email gcade(at) or click on our staff contacts page link

The link to the posting notice calling for applications is at this link:

Source protection plan policies address a list of 21 activities (such as fuel or chemical storage, among others) in four types of vulnerable areas. The four vulnerable areas are wellhead protection areas which are zones to protect municipal wells and the groundwater that supplies them; surface water intake protection zones; significant groundwater recharge areas; and highly vulnerable aquifers. People may find the maps of these areas by visiting Threat activities may be assessed as low, moderate or significant threats to municipal drinking water sources. In this region, significant threats to drinking water are found only in wellhead protection areas A, B, and C. The policies in those relatively small vulnerable areas reduce risk by using tools ranging from education and outreach, to risk management plans, to restricted land uses, or prohibition of some activities.

To find out if you are in a vulnerable area near a municipal well, use the interactive maps, or read a fact sheet on one of the 25 municipal well systems of the region, at You are invited to review the page on your community’s well, consult a detailed map of wellhead protection areas, and read a fact sheet that lets you know about the water source and treatment, explains the wellhead protection areas, and provides ways to protect these local drinking water sources. If you would like to learn if plan policies apply to you, or how you can protect local drinking water sources, visit the website at or phone toll-free 1-888-286-2610 or email info(at)

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