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This Policy Statement is issued under the authority of Section 3 of the Planning Act. It provides policy direction on matters of provincial interest related to land use planning and development. The policies focus on the key provincial interests related to land use planning. These policies will be complemented by locally-generated policies regarding matters of local interest.

Section 3 of the Planning Act requires that, in exercising any authority that affects planning matters, planning authorities "shall have regard to" policy statements issued under the Act.

The Policy Statement is intended to promote a policy-led system which recognizes that there are complex inter-relationships among environmental, economic and social factors in land use planning.

A healthy economy is vital to Ontario's ongoing prosperity. Wisely managed growth can result in communities which are economically and environmentally sound, and which meet the full range of needs of their current and future residents. Doing things right the first time can avoid the need for costly remedial measures to correct problems.

The Province's resources - its agricultural land base, mineral resources, natural heritage resources, water supply and cultural heritage resources - provide economic, environmental and social benefits. The wise use and protection of these resources over the long term is a key provincial interest.

Equally, the Province has an interest in protecting the long term health and safety of the population, and the financial and economic well-being of the Province and municipalities.

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