Ontario College of Trades fees have been reduced or eliminated altogether.
A recent announcement from the Ontario provincial government has been the reduction and/or elimination of annual membership fees to the controversial Ontario College of Trades.
The Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities for the province has said it has made these changes effective immediately. For the automotive service repair sector, the announcement means significant changes to the fee structure, including:
- $0 for Apprentices Class members
- $0 for Journeyperson Candidates Class members
- $0 for Tradespersons Class members
- $60 for Journeypersons Class members
The College has placed a temporary pause on membership fee collection in order to make the necessary technical changes to reflect this new fee structure.
Effective as of April 12, 2019, the Ontario College of Trades has temporarily paused sending out invoices and accepting membership payments. The College began accepting payments at the new rate quickly with the cut off set at July 5, 2019. They will notify members once membership fee collection has been resumed. The new changes are likely to be of relief to tradespeople, including automotive technicians who have seen significant licensing fee increases over the last number of years.
It is important to note that despite the announcement from the ministry, and although the College has temporarily paused sending out invoices and accepting payments, members remain responsible for their membership fees during this time. As such, membership fees at the new rates listed above will be assessed for the period of the temporary pause and will be due once the College resumes its payment processing.
Membership fees paid prior to the fee change will be credited either towards College membership fees or any future fee model, as appropriate.
Additionally, on April 11, 2019, the Government of Ontario proposed the Modernizing Skilled Trades and Apprenticeship Act, 2019 (Act) which, if passed, would establish a new governance model for the skilled trades and apprenticeship system. This would be a Ministry-led delivery model with industry input in training programs and regulation. More details regarding the proposed Act as Schedule 40 of Bill 100 can be found on the legislative Assembly of Ontario website (ola.org).
During the transition period, the College will continue to deliver on its core services—more information is available at collegeoftrades.ca.
As a result of these changes, we are back to paying the $60 fee for technician licences that were in place before the College was formed. Perhaps we might even see a return of the licence renewal in a wallet size card. If the government is serious about promoting skilled trades and getting younger people into our trade, they must recognize the automotive technician today is a highly skilled professional who is constantly upgrading his/her skills to diagnose and repair increasingly complex vehicles.