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Building Broadband Faster Act

Building Broadband Faster Act Guideline & Regulations

Dear Members,

On November 30th, 2021, the Ministry of Infrastructure sent Guidelines and a Statement of Intent document to Ontario One Call. The documents outline future proposed actions to facilitate broadband construction, including changes to the One Call legislation. It merits a close read as it outlines potential legislative and regulatory changes.

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Newsletter – November 2021

November 2021 Newsletter

New Web Portal Launch
Jan 27th, 2022

  • Easier to use platform
  • Stream-lined request options based on user type
  • Increased aerial map functionality

Read More

Contractor Bridge End Of Life
Jan 27th, 2022

  • Requests will no longer be accepted via the contractor bridge
  • Requests must now be submitted via the new web portal.

Read More

Phone Queue Changes
Mar 5th, 2022

  • For professional excavators, only Emergency, Deferred  Emergency (P0), and Sewer Lateral Requests will be accepted via phone
  • All other requests must be submitted via the new web portal.

Read More

Dedicated Locator & Self-Locator

Contractors and project proponents are wanting more control over how, when and where locates are delivered.  That’s why dedicated and self-locating models are becoming more and more popular.  Read more.

Sharing Locates

Sharing locates can help save valuable time and resources on a project.  But, when can an excavator share a locate?  Ontario One Call would like to remind excavators of the Canadian Common Ground Alliance (CCGA) Best Practices regarding the sharing of locates. Read more

Extending Locate Validity

Members are being urged to extend their locate validity to a minimum of 60 days. There are many benefits including fewer relocates, a longer excavation window for excavators, and a reduced administrative burden for both members and excavators.  Read more.


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New Subdivision Request

Follow this Best Practice when you are submitting a new subdivision request.

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Design and Planning Request

Follow this Best Practice when you are submitting a design and planning request.

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(Owners of Underground Infrastructure)

Updating 360 Feedback & Locate Statuses

Have questions about the rules surrounding 360 Feedback, or how it should be updated, or what the statuses mean?

Read More

Renegotiation Best Practice

A renegotiated date changes the legal timeframe to complete a locate. This new date needs to be beneficial for both the excavator and the member.
Follow this Best Practice when you are renegotiating.

Read More

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60 Days or More Locate Validity

60 Days or More
Locate Validity

Members are strongly urged to consider extending their locate validity period to 60 days or more.

Relocates can use up valuable resources unnecessarily as paint marks are often still visible and buried infrastructure is adequately fixed in place. With increasing locate request volumes, Members who have a locate validity period of 60 days or more are receiving fewer relocates. Fewer relocates help free up locator resources, which leads to better locate response times and improved compliance.


• Longer excavation window for Excavators
• Fewer relocates
• Less administrative burden

Members who have questions about increasing their locate validity period should reach out to Ontario One Call’s Member Services department.

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Dedicated Locator

Dedicated Locator

A dedicated locator (hired third party who locates all underground infrastructure on a project) and self-locator (a dedicated locator that is an employee of a contractor) is a way for construction projects to have continual delivery of locates when and where they are needed. Contractors and Infrastructure owners are seeing the benefits and more projects are being pushed to the dedicated locator model. 

The dedicated locator model keeps construction projects on time and helps reduce the mismanagement of locate requests in the system (duplicate locate requests, locate dumping, over notification, etc.). Companies that use dedicated locators also tend to forecast better and engage the locate service provider earlier in the planning process to ensure they have the required staff.

It is recommended that the infrastructure owners build a dedicated locator model into their construction plans at the outset. Much like Subsurface Utility Engineering, this is a time-and-money saver best organized by the project owner

What is a Dedicated Locator?

• A Dedicated Locator is a locator that is committed to a specific project.
• Using a Dedicated Locator for a project allows the project to have devoted staff whose job it is to ensure locates (including relocates/remarks, if needed) are completed when and where the Excavator needs them.

Benefits of a Dedicated Locator:

• Improves productivity.
• Reduces downtime as the locates are completed under the direction of the Excavator.
• Promotes damage prevention and safer excavation practices.
• More control – get locates when, where, and as often as your project requires.
• It provides flexibility when unidentified conflicts require project changes.
• It frees up the regular pool of public locate service providers to complete standard locate requests for homeowners and less complex tickets.

How do I set up a Dedicated Locator for my project?

• A Dedicated Locator must be certified through each Utility and/or Municipality with infrastructure in your project area. Depending on the region, there might already be a certified pool of dedicated locators ready to be hired. Alternatively, you may need to work with the Utilities/Municipalities to get someone certified and trained.
• Once you have a Dedicated Locator established the Utilities/Municipalities will need to reach out to Ontario One Call to set-up the profile.
• Once everything is set-up you can make locate requests through Ontario One Call, and your Dedicated Locator will receive the notification in order for them to provide the service.

Who Pays for Dedicated Locator?

• The Infrastructure owner (project proponent) or the contractor is responsible to pay the Dedicated Locator/Locate Service Provider directly.
• Prices could vary, and it will be based on the arrangements made with the Dedicated Locator.

What is a Self Locator?

  • A self-locator is a dedicated locator who is an employee of the excavation company.
  • Like a dedicated locator, a self-locator would need to be certified to locate all utilities.
  • Qualifications, including training, certification, and other business requirements, would have to be made through each utility and municipality.

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Marketing Award – Muse Creative

Ontario One Call Wins
4th Marketing Award

Ontario One Call, with ad agency adHOME Creative, wins Silver at the Muse Creative Awards.

September 9th, 2021

Ontario One Call’s ‘Get the Dirt’ Campaign wins its 4th marketing award, taking a Silver at the MUSE Creative Award for Integrated Marketing.

The ‘Get the Dirt’ campaign was designed with impactful creative, to educate on the need to contact Ontario One Call for any size dig.

The Muse Creative Award recognizes Ontario One Call and marketing agency adHome Creative for its industry-leading strategy to deliver a unified message across all marketing channels.

To date, Ontario One Call’s ‘Get the Dirt’ Campaign has won:

  • Gold Davey Award – Design
  • Award of Excellence at the Communicator Awards – Non-Profit Integrated Marketing
  • Gold Hermes Award – Integrated Marketing
  • Silver Muse Creative Award – Integrated Marketing

Ontario One Call is encouraging Members, Excavators, Locate Service Providers, and stakeholders to use Ontario One Call’s award-winning creative. Materials are available for download and use in the Marketing and Educational Toolkit located on our website:

Get materials at:

About the Muse Creative Awards

The MUSE Creative Awards is an international competition for creative professionals who inspire others to greater heights. Their concepts, ideas, and designs light a fire in others to strive further, thus becoming a muse. The elegant statuette symbolizes ingenuity and imagination that matches your undivided passion towards your creative vision. The MUSE Creative Awards encourages you to conquer change, recognizing the dreamers and the daredevils of the industry.

Please visit for more information.

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Voting Results 2021 AGM

Voting Results
2021 Annual General Meeting

 Dear Stakeholders,

The voting results for the 2021 Annual General Meeting are complete. Please see the results below.

For more information on the 2021 Annual General Meeting:

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AGM 2021

Ontario One Call 2021
Annual General Meeting Webinar
Join us on June 24, 2021, at 9:00 AM EDT.


June 24, 2021
9:00am – 11:00am

You must register for the Annual General Meeting (AGM) by clicking the ‘Register Now!’ button. The registration page will open up in your browser and you will be asked to fill out pertinent information. Registration for the webinar is available until Monday, June 21, 2021, at 4:00 pm.

The purpose of the Ontario One Call 2021 AGM is to review the organization’s strategic plan for 2021 and beyond. Board of Director appointments, changes to member fees, and by-law amendments will be voted upon. The audited financial statements will also be reviewed.

Reference Materials:

If you would like to submit a proxy vote for the AGM before the June 21, 2021 closing date please contact Member Services to receive a proxy form at

Our Speakers:
Scott Mudie, Chair of the Board of Directors
Karen Marner, Treasurer of the Board of Directors
Ben Hamilton, Executive Director
Katie Gotsman, Director of Operations
Bav Mistry, Chair of the Operations Committee
Ian Simpson, Director of Education, Marketing & Compliance

If you require any further information you can contact Cory Officer via email at

Register Now

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

View System Requirements

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Locate Volume

Dear Members, Excavators, and Stakeholders,

As we all are experiencing, the volume of locate requests has reached unprecedented levels in the past number of weeks. We want to share some information to help you understand some of the province-wide trends.

Earlier this year, Ontario One Call shared the results of our excavator survey. It indicated that around half of excavators expected work volumes to be above pre-pandemic levels, with around half saying it would be about the same as pre-pandemic times. Almost no excavators said that volumes would remain as low as 2020.

As April 2020 volumes were impacted by the first Covid-19 lockdown, it’s best to compare April 2021 with April 2019. The results are quite striking – Volumes are up almost 50%.

April Volumes – First three weeks of the month


Among different categories of locates, homeowner requests have almost tripled. At the same time, there are also significant increases in all other types of excavation work. The recent provincial announcement restricting certain types of construction has not affected these trends.

For our part, Ontario One Call is “business as usual”. Service levels for answering phone calls and turning around suspended web tickets have been impacted, but we continue to process all request types. Emergency calls are always our priority and continue to be answered by the first available agent.

Guidance for Members (Owners of Infrastructure):

  • Expect high volumes to continue for the foreseeable future, and Members should resource appropriately. Ontario One Call’s request volumes tend to peak in early May and then remain fairly consistent through June
  • Consider extending locate validity periods to 60 days, as most members have done. This will reduce the need for a relocate/remark. Contact for more information
  • Ensure that the work identified by the provincial government as essential construction projects are handled as a priority
  • Offer dedicated locator services to excavators doing major projects
  • Continue to communicate and work with excavators to meet their requirements

Guidance for Excavators:

  • Recognize that the historic volumes will impact member and LSP locate delivery, and continue to work with them to prioritize completion of work
  • Only submit requests for work that will begin within the next 30 days and is work that is identified by the provincial government as an essential construction project.  If your work is not starting within 30 days, please renegotiate your ticket with members
  • Ensure that your identified excavation areas are only those areas where you plan to dig. Using the web portal allows you to map out your dig location accurately

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Essential Construction List – Effective April 17th

 Essential Construction Project List

The Government of Ontario has released its essential construction project types that will be able to continue during this enhanced state of emergency

The new rules came into effect on Saturday, April 17th at 12:01 a.m., for all of Ontario.

Under the Enhancing Public Health and Workplace Safety Measures, all non-essential workplaces in the construction sector will be closed, with only essential construction permitted to operate.

Ontario One Call remains fully operational to accept locate requests.

  • We encourage Excavators to only request locates for essential projects
  • We encourage Members to respond in good faith to all locate requests within the obligated timelines

If you suspect an excavation is non-essential and does not fall within the essential construction list, fulfill your obligation to provide a locate and contact your local Public Health Unit, by-law, or non-emergency law enforcement to file a complaint.

The list of essential construction projects (as of April 17th, 2021):

Construction activities or projects and related services (including land surveying and demolition services) are essential if they:

  • are associated with the health care sector or long-term care, including new facilities, expansions, renovations and conversion of spaces that could be repurposed for health care space
  • ensure safe and reliable operations of, or provide new capacity in: municipal infrastructure;  provincial infrastructure, including but not limited to, the transit, transportation, resource, energy and justice sectors
  • support the operations of, or provide new capacity in, electricity generation, transmission, distribution and storage, natural gas distribution, transmission and storage or in the supply of resources
  • support the operations of, or provide new capacity in, schools, colleges, universities or child care centres within the meaning of the Child Care and Early Years Act, 2014
  • are required for: the maintenance and operations of petrochemical plants and refineries; significant industrial petrochemical projects where preliminary work commenced before April 17, 2021; industrial construction and modifications to existing industrial structures limited solely to work necessary for the production, maintenance or enhancement of personal protective equipment, medical devices such as ventilators and other identified products directly related to combatting the COVID-19 pandemic
  • would provide additional capacity in the production, processing, manufacturing or distribution of food, beverages or agricultural products
  • were started before April 17, 2021 and would provide additional capacity: for businesses that provide logistical support, distribution services, warehousing, storage or shipping and delivery services; in the operation and delivery of Information Technology (IT) services or telecommunications services; to, or enhance the efficiency or operations of, businesses that extract, manufacture, process and distribute goods, products, equipment and materials 
  • support the operations of broadband internet and cellular technologies and services
  • are residential construction activities or projects and related services
  • prepare a site for an institutional, commercial, industrial or residential development, including any necessary excavation, grading, roads or utilities infrastructure
  • are necessary to temporarily close construction sites that have paused, or that are not active, to ensure ongoing public safety
  • are funded in whole or in part by: the Crown in right of Canada or in right of Ontario; an agency of the Crown in right of Canada or in right of Ontario; a municipality
  • are intended to provide shelter or supports for vulnerable persons or affordable housing
  • being funded in whole or in part by, or are being undertaken by: the Crown in right of Canada or in right of Ontario; an agency of the Crown in right of Canada or in right of Ontario; a municipality a service manager as defined the Housing Services Act, 2011; a registered charity within the meaning of the Income Tax Act (Canada); a not-for-profit corporation

(source: COVID-19: enhanced public health and workplace safety measures)

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Always contact Ontario One Call Before You Dig

(Press Release – Guelph, ON) – Every year, Spring inspires people to start planning their next big [or small] outdoor project and with many Ontarians focusing on home improvements, there’s more digging happening than ever. Whether you’re having a new fence installed or digging yourself a new garden, Ontario One Call wants to remind you to Call or Click Before You Dig, for any size project!

Director of Education, Marketing & Compliance, Ian Simpson, says, “homeowner projects that involved digging were up 20% last year, and this trend is going to continue in 2021 as people are spending more time at home. We need them to be safe.”

Finding out what cables and lines, such as gas and electricity, are buried on your property is a critical step before you start digging for any size project. It’s so critical, it’s the law! If a homeowner or hired contractor chooses not to call or click Ontario One Call for a locate, they could find themselves in a dangerous situation, be held liable for damages, and face additional fines.

HGTV personality, Kate Campbell is partnering up with Ontario One Call to help spread this important safety message and raise awareness.

Kate runs her own renovation company and has worked on many HGTV shows like “Holmes On Homes”, “Holmes Inspection”, “Decked Out”, “Home to Win” and “Custom Built”. “I’m really excited to be working with Ontario One Call”, says Kate. “Working in the renovation industry for my entire career, I’ve always been committed to safety on the job site, and that includes the importance of requesting locates for any digging project.”

According to the DIRT Report, published by the Ontario Regional Common Ground Alliance (ORCGA), there were over 4,500 reported damages to underground cables or pipes in 2020, and thirty-nine percent were caused because a locate was not requested.

Simpson says, “Call or Click Before You Dig isn’t just for professionals or large projects. It’s for anyone who is planning to dig for any reason. Even if you are planting a single tree, you could hit a utility line and get seriously injured.”

A locate request can be made online or by calling Ontario One Call a minimum of 5 days before digging. Once this first step is taken, Ontario One Call notifies utilities and buried infrastructure owners who will send representatives to identify hazards below the ground.

Don’t take the risk. Dig Safe this season by contacting Ontario One Call. It’s free, It’s easy. It’s the law.

To request a locate visit:

Ontario One Call is a not-for-profit organization that acts as a communications link between utility companies, underground infrastructure owners, and individuals who are planning to dig in the province of Ontario. In 2012, the Ontario Underground Infrastructure Notification System Act was passed, which stipulates by law that anyone in the province of Ontario must contact Ontario One Call before they dig.

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