History of the OMB

The OMB is one of the province’s longest-standing adjudicative tribunals. Originally named the Ontario Railway and Municipal Board (ORMB), the Board was created by the Ontario government to oversee municipalities’ accounts and to supervise the then rapidly growing rail transportation system between and within municipalities.

In 1906, the ORMB assumed new responsibilities, including those previously carried out by the Office of the Provincial Municipal Auditor. At that time, the new powers and jurisdiction given to the Board made it Ontario’s first independent, quasi-judicial administrative tribunal. Before then, provincial regulations of municipal matters were dealt with at the legislative level and the courts. The ORMB was renamed the Ontario Municipal Board in 1932.

While the OMB’s mandate has evolved over the years, many of the powers given to the OMB at the time of its creation have been retained, albeit with changing scopes of responsibility.