ARCHIVED - Engagement Sessions on Bill C-47, Northern Jobs and Growth Act

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Overview and Rationale

The Northern Jobs and Growth Act, Bill C-47, includes the Nunavut Planning and Project Assessment Act and the Northwest Territories Surface Rights Board Act (which includes related amendments to the Yukon Surface Rights Board Act).

The first part of the Act enacts the Nunavut Planning and Project Assessment Act, which implements certain provisions of articles 10 to 12 of the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement, which came into force on July 9, 1993.

The second part enacts the Northwest Territories Surface Rights Board Act, which implements certain provisions of certain land claim agreements. In particular, the Act establishes the Northwest Territories Surface Rights Board, whose purpose is to resolve disputes related to terms and conditions of access to lands and waters in the Northwest Territories and the compensation to be paid in respect of that access.

There are also three amendments to the Yukon Surface Rights Board Act designed to increase efficiencies and improve processes.

Consultation and Engagement

Nunavut Planning and Project Assessment Act

Work on the Nunavut Planning and Project Assessment Act began back in 2002, with the formation of the Nunavut Legislative Working Group, a group of representatives from the federal government, the Government of Nunavut and Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated. Representatives from the Nunavut Planning Commission and the Nunavut Impact Review Board were also included as advisors. In April 2009, a consultation draft was circulated publicly to a wide range of groups within Nunavut and beyond, including officials from various industries and representatives of Aboriginal organizations, environmental groups and local and territorial governments. At the same time, federal officials visited a number of communities throughout Nunavut and held public meetings to hear directly from Nunavummiut.

In November 2009 and again in April 2010, the federal government prepared and presented the Nunavut Legislative Working Group with drafts of the bill. The working group collaborated throughout the fall, winter and spring of 2009-2010 making sure the bill reflected public input and resolved all policy questions. In 2011, federal officials made minor improvements requested by Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated and industry, and put finishing touches on the bill.

List of Consultations on Nunavut Planning and Project Assessment Act

Northwest Territories Surface Rights Board Act

With respect to the Northwest Territories Surface Rights Board portion of the Act, consultations were also extensive. Consultations began in 2010 with information sessions, distribution of the draft bill and consultation sessions. Comments were received and accommodation measures incorporated into the draft bill.

This process was repeated on a second and third draft of the legislation in 2011 and 2012. Over 35 consultation sessions were held with Aboriginal groups and governments, the Government of the Northwest Territories and industry organizations.

These sessions included groups with and without settled land claims in the Northwest Territories and groups outside of the Northwest Territories with transboundary claims. All comments received were responded to in writing explaining any changes and demonstrating what accommodation measures were incorporated.

List of consultations on Northwest Territories Surface Rights Board Act

Parliamentary Consideration

Information on Parliamentary study of Bill C-47 can be found here.

Status

Consultations were completed and the legislation received Royal Assent on June 19, 2013.

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