Regional Service Commissions (RSCs) were established in 2012 to replace 12 solid waste commissions and 12 land use planning commissions. The work of the RSCs to has shown that residents benefit from a greater level of regional collaboration. Local governance reform recognizes that the best approach to achieving progress across the province is to give RSCs a broader mandate – one that requires elected officials and leaders to develop a regional vision and a consistent approach to addressing opportunities and challenges.
RSCs have the potential to achieve economies of scale, offer more services at lower costs, and access specialized expertise which would not otherwise be affordable or accessible to many communities.
Under local governance reform the RSCs will now provide regional leadership in the following areas:
Economic development: Bring together business stakeholders and community leaders to provide focus for regional growth.
Tourism promotion: Ensure coordinated regional tourism promotion.
Community development: Play an important role in ensuring a coherent regional vision and plan in areas such as affordable housing, newcomer settlement services and diversity promotion, social inclusion and health communities.
Regional transportation (community transit): Bring stakeholders and local governments together in collaboration with the Economic and Social Inclusion Corporation to develop and implement strategies and services to better serve residents.
Regional infrastructure cost-sharing: Establish guidelines that will provide direction to regional service commissions on cost-sharing opportunities for sport, recreation and cultural infrastructure. Identified infrastructure costs will be shared based on a tax base and population formula.
Additional social focus: RSCs of South-East, Fundy and Capital Region will provide a regional approach to address challenges posed by a growing vulnerable population in larger urban centres, starting in 2024.