Jump to: Conservation Authorities


The Ontario Museum Association works with its members to ensure a relevant and sustainable museum sector for the benefit of Ontario residents and our global community. 

An advocacy-focused newsletter is sent to members on the 2nd Thursday of each month. See past issues here

Action on the TODS
(Tourism-Oriented Directional Signing)
Program 2020 Increase
We want to hear from you!
Deadline: December 15, 2019

In December 2018, swift collective action in the tourism sector led to the government announcing a one-year price freeze in the TODS program. Relevant ministries stated in the press release that they would “look for ways we can help mitigate this price increase”. Read the press release HERE

Members have again expressed concerns about increases to TODS program fees for 2020. The OMA has conveyed these concerns in a letter to the Minister of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries, the Honourable Lisa MacLeod, highlighting the importance of signage to support tourism in Ontario, including rural and Northern communities. 

The OMA is collecting feedback on the TODS program and whether museums are able to participate at the increased prices. 

Please answer a two-minute survey about your participation in the TODS program HERE

Comments may also be sent to

The TODS signs in Ontario have been contracted to Canadian TODS Limited, a subsidiary of an American company, Interstate Logos LLC., since 1997.

Read more on the Canadian TODS Limited website HERE

Changes to Conservation Authority
Operations May Affect Museums
Following the passing of Bill 108- the More Homes, More Choice Act, 2019, the Honourable Jeff Yurek, Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks wrote a letter to Ontario’s 36 conservation authorities informing them that "changes will require conservation authorities to re-focus their efforts on the delivery of programs and services related to their core mandates." 

2% of Ontario’s museums are governed by conservation authorities, including sites like Black Creek Pioneer Village, Westfield Heritage Village, and the R. Tait McKenzie Museum. 

In a statement to CBC Ottawa regarding the operations of the R. Tait McKenzie Museum in Almonte, Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks Press Secretary Andrew Buttigieg said the Bill 108 "clearly specifies" that municipalities "have the option to enter into transparent and public funding agreements with conservation authorities for non-core services, such as operating the R. Tait McKenzie museum."

Read the Letter from Minister Yurek HERE. 

Read more about the R. Tait McKenzie Museum from CBC Ottawa HERE

In the Media: 


In response, on September 27th, Ontario Museum Association President Petal Furness sent a letter to Minister Yurek, encouraging consultation with the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport and stating the value of museums and historic sites connected to Ontario’s Conservation Authorities for visitors and tourists. Museums in Conservation Authorities offer learning activities that bring thousands of people to special events in rural areas in off-peak tourist seasons.

“Conservation Authorities that make heritage and cultural experiences a part of their functions have significant impacts for their communities and their vitality. If requiring Conservation Authorities to re-focus on their “core mandate” means a loss of these vital places and programs, the people of Ontario will be losing a valuable part of their communities.”

Read the full text of the letter HERE.


The OMA is following up with museums connected to Conservation Authorities, and has offered consultation alongside the Ministries of Environment, Conservation and Parks; and Tourism, Culture and Sport. 

For more news about Advocacy, see the Advocacy editions of the OMA eNewsletter, ONmuseums, on the second Thursday of each month. ONmuseums is an OMA Member Benefit; to learn about membership, click here!