Steve O’Melia focuses his practice on municipal, planning/development, environmental and expropriation law. Acting for both public and private sector clients, Steve frequently appears before municipal councils, committees and administrative tribunals such as the Ontario Municipal Board. He has successfully represented clients before all levels of the Ontario Court on municipal law matters.
Steve is a Certified Specialist in Municipal Law (Local Government/Land Use Planning and Development) and was appointed to the Law Society’s Municipal Law Specialty Committee. He has been a course instructor in municipal law topics for Conestoga College and the Association of Municipal Managers, Clerks and Treasurers of Ontario (AMCTO) and is a regular contributor to municipal law publications and continuing legal education programs.
After beginning his legal career in the Toronto office of a large national law firm, Steve held increasingly senior in-house legal positions with local and regional municipalities in the Greater Toronto Area. Since his move to Waterloo Region to return to private practice in 2003, he has advised and represented numerous municipalities, school boards, conservation authorities, private companies and individuals.
Steve successfully represented several municipalities at Ontario Municipal Board hearings arising from appeals of zoning by-laws relating to wind energy projects, including what was at that time the largest project of its type in Ontario’s history. In approaching such matters, he appreciates the need to achieve a favourable legal outcome while respecting the broader public role of his municipal clients.
Steve was named to the 2014 and 2015 editions of The Best Lawyers in Canada© for Municipal Law.
In his leisure time, Steve enjoys a variety of activities including skiing, cycling, golf, windsurfing and soccer.