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Proceedings of the Standing Joint Committee for the
Scrutiny of Regulations
Issue 6 - Evidence - April 10, 2014
OTTAWA, Thursday, April 10, 2014
The Standing Joint Committee for the Scrutiny of Regulations met this day at 8:30 a.m. for the review of statutory instruments.
Senator Bob Runciman and Ms. Chris Charlton (Joint Chairs) in the chair.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): We're suspicious that a few of our colleagues may be over in the other building searching for us, but hopefully they will find us as the proceedings get under way.
SOR/2003-296 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE WILDLIFE AREA REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix A, p. 6A:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Item 1 on our agenda is under the heading "Letters To And From Ministers."
These regulations govern activities in wildlife areas and set the fee payable to enter the Cap Tourmente National Wildlife Area. Amendments were promised in 2005.
Peter Bernhardt, General Counsel to the Committee: Mr. Chair, as you indicated, the committee has been waiting some time for these amendments. Last November, the committee decided to ask the minister if she could provide a time frame. The department had seemed reluctant to do so. It was also suggested that if the delays in making the amendments promised to the committee were caused by issues related to the other amendments with which they had been grouped, perhaps the committee's concerns could be addressed independently. The minister's February 18 reply advises that, yes, the amendments have been moved into a smaller package and that the package is expected to be completed this year.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Any comments?
Senator Nancy Ruth: It took two and a half months to answer that they hope to get it done by the end of the year. I suggest we just keep on top of it.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Monitor the file.
Senator Nancy Ruth: Yes.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Agreed?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2013-156 — ORDER AMENDING THE SCHEDULE TO THE EXPORT AND IMPORT OF ROUGH DIAMONDS ACT
(For text of documents, see Appendix B, p. 6B:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Under "New Instruments," Item 2 on our agenda concerns an instrument that was not transmitted to the Clerk of the Privy Counsel for registration within the required time line.
Shawn Abel, Counsel to the Committee: Thank you, Mr. Chair. Section 5(1) of the Statutory Instruments Act requires that the transmission for registration be done within seven days. This order was registered some 23 days after its making. The department indicates that this delay occurred due to problems at several points in their processes. They undertook an internal review and indicate that the procedural issues are being addressed. If members are satisfied with that, counsel can monitor future instruments for compliance and close this file in the meantime.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Is there direction from the committee?
Mr. Albas: Mr. Chair, I think they've given a rationale as to why it shouldn't happen again. I would encourage counsel to close the file but to keep on top of this.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Agreed?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2010-69 — MORTGAGE INSURANCE DISCLOSURE (BANKS, AUTHORIZED FOREIGN BANKS, TRUST AND LOAN COMPANIES, RETAIL ASSOCIATIONS, CANADIAN INSURANCE COMPANIES AND CANADIAN SOCIETIES) REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix C, p. 6C:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): We will move on to "Reply Unsatisfactory," Item 3. Five points were raised, with satisfactory responses to three. We've had a commitment to make a correction to the fourth and an unsatisfactory to the fifth.
Mr. Bernhardt: That's correct, Mr. Chair. The one point in which the response was deemed unsatisfactory was the one discussed in point 2 of the correspondence. This concerns an obligation set out in section 3 of the regulations that information disclosed under the regulations must be disclosed in a manner that is not misleading. These regulations are made under several statutes. Each one of those statutes contains a provision that states it's an offence to knowingly provide false or misleading information in relation to any matter under the act or the regulations.
Under the statutes, an offence has been committed only if the accused knowingly provided false or misleading information. Under the regulations, it only has to be proved that the accused provided information in a manner that is misleading, whether knowingly or otherwise. In short, section 3 of the regulations considerably lightens the prosecution's burden of proof. It is suggested in the note that this amounts to thwarting the intent that Parliament has expressed clearly in the statutes it passed and calls into question the validity of section 3. We suggest that matter should be further pursued with the department.
Senator Tannas: I concur with counsel that we should write back to express the point about thwarting the intent of Parliament and to make our position known.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Do you agree with that approach?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2013-7 — UNSOLICITED TELECOMMUNICATIONS FEES REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix D, p. 6D:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Item 4 involves regulations concerning the National Do Not Call List. There are a number of procedural issues and inconsistencies in drafting.
Mr. Bernhardt: These regulations impose fees on subscribers to the National Do Not Call List. Those fees are to cover the cost of the CRTC's investigation and enforcement activities in relation to the list. As you'll see from the correspondence, a number of issues were identified. The commission's response basically is that no action is required on any of them.
As a preliminary matter, it was first suggested that because there's no requirement under the Telecommunications Act that a regulation be substantially similar to the version that was pre-published, it would perhaps be preferable in the future to omit the statement to this effect from the executive portion of the regulations. The idea would be to avoid any debate over whether the final version was or was not substantially similar. If you don't need to say it, why say it and create that issue? It's not entirely clear from the response that the commission grasped the point, but it has been made aware of the potential for the dispute. It seems to feel there's little risk to continuing the current practice.
The second point concerned whether these fees are subject to the User Fees Act, which imposes certain requirements when a regulatory authority fixes a user fee. The commission's response refers to a Federal Court of Appeal decision which held that the User Fees Act did not apply to the Telecommunications Fees Regulations 1995. In that case, the court noted that telecom fees pay for the commission's telecommunications activities broadly and that in fulfilling its mandate the commission provides a number of regulatory processes, services and licences. Some of these do not offer a benefit or an advantage to the person who pays the fees, although that aspect is required by the definition of "user fees." The court also noted that the telecom fees were subject to Treasury Board approval and required to be pre-published in the Canada Gazette. The court suggested this provided sufficient transparency.
The commission concludes that the same reasoning can be applied to these fees, that is, the Unsolicited Telecommunications Fees Regulations. It argues that the regulations don't result in a direct benefit or advantage to the fee payer — in this case, a telemarketer — but they support the total regulatory costs of all the commission's responsibilities concerning the National Do Not Call List. The commission also suggests that transparency is achieved here by including the amount that they expect to be collected under these fees in its expenditure plan, and that plan forms part of the estimates.
The analysis in the note that was prepared for members for this morning concludes that it is possible that a court would agree with the commission but that there are counter-arguments as well. It could be said that there is a direct benefit or advantage to the fee payer, since only those people who pay the fees have access to the Do Not Call List and only those people can engage in telemarketing.
In addition, while the court decision identified the complex regulatory scheme that was funded by the fees it had before it, in this case these fees fund only the commission's investigation and enforcement activities in relation to the list. The question could also be asked whether stating the amount anticipated to be recovered by the fees in an expenditure plan is equivalent to prior scrutiny of the fees. There are statutes that expressly state that the User Fees Act does not apply to particular fees. One way to resolve any uncertainty here would be to amend the Telecommunications Act to include that sort of provision.
Turning to point 3, the basis for the Do Not Call List is the Unsolicited Telecommunications Rules. These rules are set out in an appendix to the CRTC's Telecom Decision 2007-48. However, these rules seem to fall within the definition of "statutory instrument and regulation" in the Statutory Instruments Act. In particular, they represent the exercise of a legislative power conferred by or under an act of Parliament. If that's the case, the requirements of the Statutory Instruments Act apply, including examination, registration and publication. They also would be subject to review by this committee.
The commission relies on the fact that it performs certain quasi-judicial functions in administering the act to claim that the rules are made by a quasi-judicial body, and there is an exception for instruments made by quasi-judicial bodies in the definition of "statutory instrument."
The commission proposed this argument previously. The note sets out an excerpt from a January 2007 letter responding to that argument, emphasizing the need to distinguish between the multiple functions that the commission and other such bodies fulfill. That was the last that had been heard of this argument until now.
We suggest that the Unsolicited Telecommunications Rules establish detailed rules that apply to telemarketers as a class. They're not a quasi-judicial decision that applies to a single person or body. The rules represent the exercise of a legislative power, not a quasi-judicial power, and we suggest that the exception for instruments made by quasi-judicial bodies does not appear to apply and that the requirements of the Statutory Instruments Act must be met.
Points 4, 5, and 6 concern inconsistent use of terminology, that is, using different terms to indicate the same meaning or using terminology that differs from that in the act. The commission asserts that it's enough that the meaning is unambiguous and the overall meaning is the same in both languages, and it refers more than once to current drafting practices that target the economical use of words.
It's a basic principle of legislative drafting, of course, that the same words should be used throughout an act or regulation to express the same meaning. The note in the material cites authorities for this. I would suggest common sense is really the only authority that's required. It should also be evident that the same terms used in the regulations should be those used in the parent act. On this point, the note quotes the federal regulations manual prepared by the Department of Justice. I'd suggest the commission's response on these points is somewhat bizarre.
Point 7 concerns a requirement that the commission publish its telemarketing regulatory costs every year. Some of these costs may be known only after the end of the year. It was noted, however, that estimated costs for the 2013-14 fiscal year were published, so the commission was asked if it read the regulations as requiring publication of a revised notice if the cost for the fiscal year exceeded the estimated costs.
The commission responded that indeed there may be more than one publication for a year. It seems to infer that, in practice, the regulatory costs are published following the end of the year. If the commission chooses, it can publish estimated costs, although it's not required to do so.
So interpreted, that reply on point 7 could be taken to be satisfactory. Otherwise, we would suggest writing back on all of these points.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): You've heard counsel's recommendation. Comments?
Mr. Albas: Mr. Chair, I certainly appreciate that this is quite a wide berth of issues we have to deal with in terms of the CRTC. I have a quick question for counsel and then subsequent comments.
On point 7, where the CRTC recognizes their responsibilities as far as publishing, do you feel their response is adequate?
Mr. Bernhardt: I think it can be taken as satisfactory, yes.
Mr. Albas: Working backwards, because obviously that's how my mind works, on points 4, 5, and 6 I'm quite baffled as well by the CRTC's approach and the fact that they talk about current economical drafting practices. It is dumbfounding to hear that they would attempt to use that kind of language around terms that can mean different things to different people. I agree with counsel that good drafting promotes clarity and does not raise questions, in particular from this committee. I would absolutely suggest that we seek resolution to points 4, 5 and 6 just out of the basic principles of drafting.
To the more substantial issues, I have one more question to counsel. On points 1, 2 and 3, particularly when we're talking about the Statutory Instruments Act, and the arguments they use as well as the User Fees Act, would counsel find that as we progress on this there might be advantage to separate the two? I think the drafting arguments are substantially different than the legal arguments being presented. This was quite a big file — for myself as a committee member — to chomp on.
Mr. Bernhardt: That is something we could certainly consider when the file comes back to the committee. I suspect the committee may be confronted next time with promises to address the drafting issues and perhaps a bit more push-back on the other issues. In that sense, the file may effectively divide itself.
Mr. Albas: That may come naturally.
Mr. Bernhardt: If not, we'll certainly do what we can to differentiate.
Mr. Albas: Mr. Chair, I would suggest that members of the committee consider writing back on all points. I understand the legal precedent that the CRTC is arguing, in particular on the User Fees Act, but I don't necessarily think you can apply that decision uniformly to the CRTC. Maybe counsel could write back and ask for more information to see what other arguments they use to justify. I think there is significant public interest in this committee pursuing further clarification of the CRTC's position on those relevant points.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Any further discussion?
Mr. Bélanger: I apologize for being late. I didn't read the place where we were supposed to meet.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): You weren't alone.
Mr. Bélanger: To whom will we write back at the CRTC? The person in charge — the contact — is a senior general counsel. I'm not suggesting we write to the minister but perhaps to Mr. Jean-Pierre Blais. I think he's quite a bit more sensitive to the realities and necessities of dealing with the legislative arm of government.
Mr. Albas: It's my understanding that this is the first time the CRTC has responded on this file. Is that correct?
Mr. Bernhardt: This is the first time it's been here.
Mr. Albas: They've given a lot of grist for the mill, so I suggest we write back to the gentleman we've been dealing directly with on this, simply because we're at that level. I feel that on many of the points, particularly 1 through 3, we still have not substantiated that they are incorrect in their position. We need to ask for more information. Mr. Chair, if we go any higher in the CRTC, they will simply refer it back to the same person.
Maybe at the end of the day, we'll get the same result, but I think a little more engagement at this level is warranted. If we receive unsatisfactory responses on many of these points, we can always go up a notch on the totem pole.
Mr. Bélanger: There's also the matter of language. In the previous exchanges that I've had with the CRTC, they did not even recognize that they were subject to the Official Languages Act. We had to straighten them out on that.
Mr. Blais is very sensitive to that now, having been involved when he was involved in Canadian Heritage. That is why I think making him aware of this would be very useful to getting this thing resolved.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Would copying him on the correspondence be satisfactory?
Mr. Bélanger: Please.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Are we in agreement with that?
Mr. Albas: That's fine.
Hon. Members: Agreed.
Senator Moore: Maybe, chair, in our counsel's letter, he can gently put that reminder in there that it is subject to the Official Languages Act.
Mr. Albas: While I'm not necessarily opposed to the idea, right now we have opened up a number of fronts with the CRTC. Before we open up new fronts where we're going to get further confusion, I would much rather see us go a little harder down the point on the drafting side where there could be French-English issues.
This is more of a disagreement on the approach they've currently taken. I go back to their continuous citing of economic drafting principles. Rather than opening up another line of argument for them to come down, I would like us to simply address what's on the table. Then if we do get an unsatisfactory response, I believe in what Mr. Bélanger and Senator Moore are saying.
Senator Moore: I'm sure they will get the message.
SOR/2013-77 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE EGG REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix E, p. 6E:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Moving on, Item 5 involves a requirement to use only chemical agent and cleaners that are "safe and effective." Counsel believes that's a subjective description.
Mr. Abel: This instrument uses the term "safe and effective" to replace previous wording that was more specific concerning the permitted chemical agents. The agency argues that the term "safe and effective" is neither subjective nor vague in the context of the regulations. It suggested that "safe" should be taken to mean chemical agents that will not cause harm or death or illness to persons in an egg station or to those who handle or consume the eggs and that "effective" simply means that dirt will be removed from the eggs.
However, counsel has pointed out that the regulatory impact analysis statement accompanying the instrument refers only to food safety requirements when discussing these amendments. Unlike as suggested by the agency, there's no mention of the safety of persons in egg stations who are involved in preparing the eggs.
This latter issue would be a matter of occupational health and safety, and it's questionable whether such a requirement would even fall within the bounds of the Canada Agricultural Products Act under which these regulations are made.
So not only are there apparently two different interpretations provided by the agency, but one may not even be valid. I would suggest that the agency itself has demonstrated that the meaning of the term "safe and effective" is vague and subjective and further demonstrates a need to establish some kind of clear and objective criteria concerning these provisions.
Coincidentally enough, the agency's letter does express a fairly specific view of what the term should mean. If we leave aside matters of occupational health and safety, the explanation given would provide objective criteria upon which to determine whether a given chemical agent or a mixture of agents was safe and effective.
Perhaps it should be suggested to the agency that something of this nature, these criteria or something similar should be set out in the regulations.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Comments from the committee?
Senator Hervieux-Payette: I was reading that. I am a very conscious person with regard to nutrition, and eggs in particular. I did some research recently. Are you saying that it's not specific enough or not well enough determined what can and cannot be used? "Safe and effective," for me, we agree with that, but that's not the regulation. So we need to know what is safe and effective. Is that the purpose of your intervention?
Mr. Abel: That's exactly it. Regarding the term "safe and effective," different people will have different ideas of what that should mean. Is a person operating at an egg station able to understand what the department intends with what's safe and what's effective? We'd like to see more specificity so that everyone reading the regulations can see clearly what's safe and effective and what isn't, as far as the department is concerned.
Senator Hervieux-Payette: Which department is this coming from? I was wondering. Is it Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada or the Canadian Food Inspection Agency?
Mr. Abel: The Canadian Food Inspection Agency.
Senator Hervieux-Payette: I support it totally, because it's a multimillion dollar business. People have to be sure all the eggs are clean. I would say billions of them are sold. I agree this should be more specific.
Ms. Ayala: There is a problem here. The regulations provide that only "safe and effective" chemical agents may be used. That is very vague. There are two possible interpretations. The first is that those chemical products are not likely to harm people who use them. The second interpretation is that the products are effective for washing eggs.
The regulations later state that those chemicals should be acceptable for contact with food and that they should meet food safety requirements. However, some important points should be considered. As my colleague was saying earlier, the eggs do need to be clean, but people working with those chemical products should also do so in safe conditions. Certain labour conditions must be considered.
Moreover, a clean chemical product would be used, but boiling an egg in water would not remove all chemical residues.
So there are three main considerations to keep in mind. Yes, the egg's cleanliness is important, but so are the labour conditions — workers should not be exposed to hazards — and the final product. Consumers continue to be exposed to a product that could even be toxic because it is very clean at their home. This is very important because people's health is at stake.
Clarifications should be requested, and the legislation should be more specific.
Senator Unger: Mr. Chair, I agree with counsel that the words "safe and effective" are vague and ineffective. The regulation should specify the criteria that will be used to determine the exact standard. The will of Parliament is supreme here and must be upheld. Further clarifications need to be made.
Mr. Albas: I agree with Senator Unger.
One point I would like to make is that we've heard today from members that all of us are concerned about food safety. All of us want to have a safe food chain. Most of us probably eat eggs on a regular basis.
I would just point out that within the industry itself, most if not a hundred per cent of them are probably adhering to all of these standards and more. It's just that we want to know as legislators that these kinds of things are in there. If there are new entrants to the market and whatnot, there needs to be clear criteria. Chances are the companies currently in operation are using chemicals that have long been used and are using methods to make sure that everyone is safe.
I wanted to make the point that just because it's not in there doesn't mean the final result isn't what we want. It's just that we do believe there's significant public interest in making sure it's abundantly clear.
Senator Moore: So we agree that we're going to do a letter, chair?
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Yes. We've agreed.
SOR/2004-110 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE COASTAL FISHERIES PROTECTION REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix F, p. 6F:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Item 6 under "Reply Unsatisfactory (?)" concerns the use of ambulatory incorporation by reference without authorization. The department has indicated that there are amendments forthcoming that, in their words, "to a large extent" will address the committee's concerns.
Mr. Bernhardt: As you indicated, Mr. Chair, the one issue raised here was the validity of the open incorporation by reference. As members know and as was set out in the committee's report on the topic, it has always been the view of the committee that this type of incorporation must be authorized either expressly or by necessary implication. Of course, Bill S-2 would amend the Statutory Instruments Act to provide a general authority to incorporate documents as amended from time to time.
There was also a second aspect of the incorporation raised here, and that was a more practical, administrative aspect that arose from the fact that there are a number of references here. What is incorporated are conservation and enforcement measures adopted by the North Atlantic Fisheries Organization. Some of the provisions that incorporate these measures are then designated as provisions, the contravention of which is an offence. However, many of the references to specific articles of these measures in the regulations are out of date and refer to the wrong section numbers.
The department promised to correct these references, but then the outdated references were amended and revised a second time, before the department could make the amendments. It seemed fairly clear that, practically, the department was having trouble keeping up and because of that, the committee argued that these references should be fixed so as to refer to a specific version of the measures; any changes to the measures would not be applicable unless the regulations were themselves amended.
As I say, in this particular case, this is somewhat separate from the question of legality, per se.
As you indicated, Mr. Chair, the department advised that "to a large extent" the committee's concerns would be addressed, but no further detail was provided as to exactly what "to a large extent" meant.
As for the timing of the amendments, I can inform the committee that I was informally advised last week that the hope now is that the amendments will be completed by the end of May, although, as I say, it's still not known exactly what will be in the amendments.
Ms. Quach: If we do not really know what will be included in the amendments proposed by the minister, could we send him a letter to find out whether your suggestion to use fixed incorporation by reference and not ambulatory incorporation by reference could be included in those amendments? This is the most important part, since ambulatory measures refer to outdated considerations.
Mr. Bernhardt: Certainly. It's always for the committee to decide. It would certainly be within the realm of reasonable response to write and say now, "Can you please give some indication what will be in these amendments?" I suppose the concern here is that by the time the committee gets a letter back, the amendments may already be made.
Mr. Albas: I was actually going to make that very point. May is coming up very quickly. Why don't we simply monitor the file, see what the department has, and if the forthcoming amendments are not to the committee's liking, we can write back.
Senator Hervieux-Payette: You said May, I think. We should know before the end of the session.
Mr. Bernhardt: Another possibility would be that we would simply receive instruction that if the amendments are not made in May, we would then write and ask, first, where things stand; and, second, what is going to be in those amendments. Hopefully we would have a reply by the fall.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Are we okay with that approach?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2005-62 — CANADA PRODUCTION INSURANCE REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix G, p. 6G:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Item 7 falls under the heading "Part Action Promised." These regulations set conditions and standards to ensure agricultural programs developed and implemented by the provinces are financially independent and actuarially sound.
We've been given promises that amendments to deal with 14 of the 16 points that had been raised will be dealt with.
Mr. Abel: That's correct, Mr. Chair. For the committee's awareness, the promised amendments will deal with the equivalency of French and English versions of the regulations, clarifications in drafting matters, will provide definitions for terms found in guidelines referred to by the regulations, and will also set out a time limit for the requirement imposed on provinces to maintain records relating to these production or crop insurance agreements.
Points 4 and 5 do not have promised amendments, and these concern the relationship between enabling legislation and the subordinate legislation.
Under point 4, counsel noted that the term "risk area" was defined in the regulations, despite that this term is used in the parent act without the benefit of a definition. It must be presumed that Parliament not only intended a specific meaning for this term but considered that meaning to be clear from the words it used and from the context found in the act. As a general principle, a subordinate instrument may not set out a definition of a term used in its enabling legislation unless authorized to do so. No such authorization exists here.
As explained in the note prepared for members, the effect of attempting to define in the regulations a term found in the act produces one of two possibilities: either the definition is at odds with Parliament's intent, in which case it's unlawful, or it reproduces Parliament's intent, in which case it's unnecessary and should be removed. If the department believes that the term "risk area" needs to be defined, the solution is to ask Parliament to amend the act. The regulatory definition should be removed.
Point 5 concerns subsection 2(1) of the regulations. This states that a production insurance agreement entered into with a province shall provide for the agricultural products eligible for coverage under the insurance plan. This is already required in almost identical language by paragraph 5(1)(b) of the act. The department suggests that this apparent redundancy was included because the drafters felt it necessary to add a clarification. Were that the case, it would raise the same issues discussed under point 4. However, there is no clarification provided here. No new information is imparted because almost exactly the same language is used. This seems merely to be a case of duplication and is, therefore, unnecessary. As such, it should be removed.
If members wish, a further letter to the department could be drafted, following up on these two points and also seeking a time frame for the making of the promised amendments.
Mr. Clarke: I agree with counsel's recommendations to seek a time frame.
Senator Hervieux-Payette: It is my understanding that the translation will be corrected. The issue is that a definition of a term has to be inserted in the act, but they are taking the liberty of including it in the regulations.
You can tell them that this is a nice and commendable effort, but it does not work in our system. It would be a good idea to clarify the limitations when regulations are being created.
I agree with the letter. However, this particular aspect is extremely important in the letter. They may think they are helping the cause, but are actually confusing people.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Is that good direction counsel?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2006-241 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE FOOD AND DRUG REGULATIONS (DATA PROTECTION)
(For text of documents, see Appendix H, p. 6H:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Moving on to Item 8 on our agenda, the committee in the past expressed concern to the presence and the wording of a purpose statement. The department opposes removing it, but they've agreed to amend it to read more clearly.
Counsel, do you want to expand on that?
Mr. Abel: I would love to, Mr. Chair.
These amendments have been sought for some time. As you stated, the committee objected both to the inclusion of a purpose statement at all, and also the wording was quite strange. The department has promised to change the wording.
The department, in its latest correspondence, seems to indicate it is crucial to them that the courts be made aware of the purpose of this provision as it is stated in the regulations. The department stresses that the information contained in the regulatory impact analysis statement, which also discusses this provision's purpose, has not always been given sufficient weight by the courts. The department expects significant amounts of litigation to continue concerning this section and has cited a number of court cases that have already considered this provision.
It may be in this case, given the high susceptibility of the section to litigation and the court's frequent reference to the purpose provision, that this may establish an exception acceptable to the committee to the general principle that the purpose statement should be avoided in subordinate legislation, especially given the department's promise to otherwise clean up the wording.
There was also a second amendment sought by the committee and the department confirms that will be forthcoming. It involves clearing up the usage of several defined terms in order to avoid confusion.
It's open to how members want to proceed at this point.
Mr. Brown: I would suggest we write back to the department and acknowledge that the committee finds the purpose statement embedded in the regulations is not ideal, that it understands the courts have referenced it and is now part of jurisprudence, and agree that it needs to be made clearer.
In addition to the purpose statement, the committee should seek resolution to the remaining items from the department with a clear time frame.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Are we all in agreement with that approach?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2010-68 — MORTGAGE INSURANCE BUSINESS (BANKS, AUTHORIZED FOREIGN BANKS, TRUST AND LOAN COMPANIES, RETAIL ASSOCIATIONS, CANADIAN INSURANCE COMPANIES AND CANADIAN SOCIETIES) REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix I, p. 6I:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Still under the heading "Part Action Promised," Item 9 involves aligning the terminology used in the French version of the regulations with that used in the enabling statute.
Mr. Bernhardt: That's correct, Mr. Chair. An amendment promised in respect of the first of the two points involves amending the French version of the definition to reflect the language used in the enabling act. This amendment would parallel the one promised in connection with what are really companion regulations that appeared under item 3 this morning on the agenda. So perhaps those two files could be followed up as a package.
On the second point, I think the response from the department could be taken to be satisfactory. Again, the issue is consistency of terminology. In this case, however, the various terms appear justified in light of the explanation the department provided. If members agree, we would simply follow up on the one promised amendment.
The Joint Chair (Senator Runciman): Counsel suggests following up on that one promise.
Senator Tannas: I would move that and ask for a time frame.
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2003-343 — CANADIAN ARTISTS AND PRODUCERS PROFESSIONAL REGULATIONS TRIBUNAL PROCEDURAL REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix J, p. 6J:1.)
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): Moving on to Item 10 under "Progress," the responsibility for the regulations has been transferred from the Canadian Artists and Producers Professional Regulations Tribunal to the Canada Industrial Relations Board, and action is now being promised to us by the end of the year.
Mr. Abel: That's correct, Madam Chair. The Canada Industrial Relations Board indicated last autumn that the amendments were expected to be made by the end of this fiscal year that just finished, and the amendments haven't yet been made. I would suggest that a further letter is warranted at this time seeking an update.
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): Any comments? Agreed?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2008-12 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE CANADIAN BROILER HATCHING EGG AND CHICK LICENSING REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix K, p. 6K:1.)
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): Item 11 concerns regulations amending the Canadian Broiler Hatching Egg and Chick Licensing Regulations. Minor amendments on these regulations have been promised by the agency.
Mr. Abel: That's correct. There's a drafting error in the French version that's awaiting correction. This was planned to be done following the completion of amendments to the Canada Hatching Egg Producers Proclamation under which these regulations are made. Those amendments were making good progress last year. Some amendments were made to the regulations in December, curiously, but for some reason they did not include the corrections sought by the committee.
At this point, I would suggest seeking a progress report and perhaps also an explanation as to why the amendment wasn't included in the December package.
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): Any comments?
Ms. Ambler: I would agree with counsel's recommendation to write back and ask for an update on the progress and when we can expect all of the amendments.
Mr. Pilon: That is what I wanted to know. I would like to have a time frame, as they promised us this would be done in December. So a time frame should be established, and we should make sure they meet their deadlines.
Senator Hervieux-Payette: Is the documentation before us published and is it being consulted by industry people?
Earlier, we talked about the chicken and egg industry — the whole poultry sector. I wanted to know whether the industry, like us, can currently provide feedback, or whether it is simply asked to amend the regulations. Have the regulations been introduced?
Mr. Bernhardt: In this case, these are made by the egg producers' association, so I presume that they consult their members. I don't know that for certain. That is a presumption. But they are the producers' association, so I'm guessing that any changes are put before the members and there must be some sort of consultation process.
Senator Hervieux-Payette: Is this self-regulation? I think it's important we know where it comes from, who will implement it and if we are in fact just sanctioning it.
Mr. Bernhardt: In this case, the act gives the Governor-in-Council the power to issue a proclamation that then delegates authority to do this, in some cases provincially. Here it's a national producers' body to oversee the marketing, production, things like levies, quotas and so on. Those are supposed to then go through the Farm Products Council, and that's intended to be the gatekeeper. As the committee has seen, there are issues with the Farm Products Council and its role as gatekeeper.
Senator Hervieux-Payette: That's why I'm asking the question. Who will we write to and who will make sure they comply with the overall health question that food and drugs is likely to —
Mr. Bernhardt: Typically in this case our correspondence is with the Farm Products Council.
Senator Hervieux-Payette: No copy is sent to the ministry to whom they are reporting?
Mr. Bernhardt: Yes. We do routinely copy Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. At the end of the day, they are the responsible department.
Ms. Quach: I am wondering how all this works. I am new to the committee, and I see that time frames are always requested. Was that not being done before? Were time frames not being requested?
This file has been open for six years, and discussions on point 1 began eight years ago. How does this work? Do we wait indefinitely for someone to deign to respond? What does the process consist of?
Mr. Bernhardt: Experienced members, I'm sure, can say as well as I can that the easy part is often getting agreement to make the amendment. It's more than frequently the case that the difficult part is holding the regulation makers' feet to the fire and actually getting the action taken. In that sense, the committee has the same weapons as any other parliamentary committee. It can nag, it can diligently follow up files, it can write to ministers, table reports, and so on. But at the end of the day, the committee's powers are those of persuasion, and the persuasion is not often easy.
Mr. Albas: The other day I was reading a newspaper from my local riding. One of my local councils was discussing chickens, and I couldn't believe the amount of discussion that was generated from something like having chickens.
I'm glad to see that our institutions federally are reflective of the local level, because there's been a lot of discussion about chickens.
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): And eggs, and which one came first.
Mr. Albas: I'd like to make two substantial points. First of all, to the topic of self-regulation, if you read the document here, it says, "following the completion of a new Federal-Provincial agreement concerning egg hatcheries and the making of amendments to the enabling Proclamation." Government is making some modernization efforts here. Those typically involve huge amounts of consultation with industry so that everyone is on side, and once this proclamation has been made, the new orders are brought in. So there is significant energy being spent to make sure that we have a safe food system, like I mentioned earlier.
If people have questions, if you look here, it says:
The first phase of amendments to the Proclamation is complete, and the second phrase is pre-published in the Canada Gazette.
I would encourage anyone to go online to the Canada Gazette and look at the RIAS, the regulatory impact analysis statement. In layman's terms, they explain the purpose of the regulations and solicit feedback.
While I can understand some people may take issue with the amount of time or that deadlines don't always get met, when you pre-publish you actually ask for the public's feedback. What if the public's feedback isn't good? There are so many hoops to jump through that I'm quite surprised some days that we get any regulations changed. Part of the stability of the system is that it always ends up getting done, but after everyone and their dog has had a chance to give their say.
I can understand when members get frustrated, but we also have to remember that the public at large does have a right to comment, in most cases, on these kinds of things. If steps are skipped, I'm sure many members here would be upset about that. While I totally understand the sentiment, we all want a safe food system. These are complex chains of command from Parliament to the delegated authorities, all up and down.
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): All right, but I do think we have agreement that we will send a letter to the Farm Products Council and we're going to cc the ministry?
Mr. Albas: Can we cc my local council so we know we're having the same issues?
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): I'll send them the Hansard.
Senator Hervieux-Payette: Ms. Quach, I have been on this committee for over 15 years. When it comes to publication, all stakeholders can provide feedback — not only the affected industry people, but also consumer associations and those who protect the public.
As my colleague said earlier, it is true that this process is long, but I think the most fundamental aspect is that, in the case of regulations —
Mr. Bernhardt, can you tell me whether a 60-day period still applies to all regulations?
Mr. Bernhardt: That's the general —
Senator Hervieux-Payette: That's the general, but is it stated if it's longer? The rule is 60 days?
Mr. Bernhardt: That's government policy. That can be varied, depending on whether there's greater urgency, whether there's felt to be a need for longer consultation period.
Senator Hervieux-Payette: Sixty days is not a long time. However, if the regulations are being amended from top to bottom, the process can take longer.
As for good will, if you look at how this committee operates, we could go as far as recommending to Parliament to repeal certain regulations completely if people were not complying with orders to make the necessary changes, and if that was harmful to the public interest.
So we do have the power, but we exercise it very seldom — perhaps three times in a decade. It does not happen often. We think it is better to proceed by mutual agreement.
Be patient. You will have grey hair by the time all the regulations have been amended.
Mr. Bélanger: The rule concerning the 60-day period is not very rigid. I seem to recall that, last December, the Canada Post Corporation issued regulations that provided for only 30 days of consultation, even during the holiday period.
So we have to keep things in perspective because the 60-day period is not always provided for.
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): If we can get this excited about a regulation that we've been dealing with since 2009, I can't wait to get to Item 12, which has been around since 1978.
SOR/77-595 — COUNTING OF SERVICE BY FORMER MEMBERS OF THE SENATE OR HOUSE OF COMMONS REGULATIONS, NO. 2
(For text of documents, see Appendix L, p. 6L:1.)
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): Under "Progress (?)," the issue in Item 12 on our agenda relates to the counting of service by former members of the Senate or House of Commons towards RCMP pensions. No one has ever applied. Nonetheless, the issue is outstanding.
Mr. Abel: That's correct, Madam Chair. This one is always fun for me.
As I mentioned in 2011, this instrument is only six months older than I am. The committee has been seeking amendments for more than 30 years. As you mentioned, they've never been applied to anyone, but the issues do nonetheless concern lack of enabling authority and unauthorized subdelegation.
In 2011, it appeared this file might be coming to a close, although the committee was cautious because this had seemed to be the case many times before. Continued caution, I would suggest, seems wise. These regulations are now planned to be repealed and replaced in response to statutory changes that took place in 2012.
The RCMP indicated in November that it was awaiting a second draft of the amendments from Justice. At this time, I would suggest a further update is warranted.
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): Agreed?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/95-100 — NEWFOUNDLAND OFFSHORE CERTIFICATE OF FITNESS REGULATIONS
SOR/95-104 — NEWFOUNDLAND OFFSHORE PETROLEUM INSTALLATIONS REGULATIONS
SOR/95-144 — NOVA SCOTIA OFFSHORE AREA PETROLEUM GEOPHYSICAL OPERATIONS REGULATIONS
SOR/95-187 — NOVA SCOTIA OFFSHORE CERTIFICATE OF FITNESS REGULATIONS
SOR/95-191 — NOVA SCOTIA OFFSHORE PETROLEUM INSTALLATIONS REGULATIONS
SOR/95-334 — NEWFOUNDLAND OFFSHORE AREA PETROLEUM GEOPHYSICAL OPERATIONS REGULATIONS
SOR/96-114 — CANADA OIL AND GAS CERTIFICATE OF FITNESS REGULATIONS
SOR/96-117 — CANADA OIL AND GAS GEOPHYSICAL OPERATIONS REGULATIONS
SOR/96-118 — CANADA OIL AND GAS INSTALLATIONS REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix M, p. 6M:1.)
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): Moving on to Item 13, there is questionable progress with respect to nine items. We have been promised that amendments will be made, but the time frame is five years.
Mr. Bernhardt: That's correct, Madam Chair. There are several dozen amendments promised in connection with all of these regulations. They're all to be revised and consolidated into what the department calls "framework regulations." This is through a project called the Frontier and Offshore Regulatory Renewal Initiative, and this initiative will involve hundreds of pages of regulations.
The original target date for completion was late 2012. As you indicated, Madam Chair, it now appears it will take another five years to complete the work.
The first phase of this project was completed in late 2009, involving other regulations. Those regulations had been reviewed. Back in 2012 the department indicated that it preferred to deal with the comments made on the new regulations first because they might impact on the drafting of the other legislation that would presumably deal with all these regulations. Their response was before the committee last fall and further correspondence has ensued on those.
An additional factor here is that Bill C-5, which is the Offshore Health and Safety Bill, would make significant amendments to the acts under which these regulations are made. It also provides for transitional regulations that would remain in force for up to five years.
The department has indicated that some provisions in some of these regulations may be moved into the transitional regulations, but nevertheless work on this regulatory renewal initiative would proceed parallel to all that and that there should be no impact on the timing of the overall process as a result of Bill C-5. Bill C-5, I should add, is currently awaiting third reading in the House of Commons.
That's where matters stand as of this morning.
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): Thank you, counsel.
Mr. Pilon: I am also new to the committee. What are the procedures if the period is set at five years? Will we wait another five years before the issue is back on the agenda, or will there be a regular follow-up? What is the procedure in such cases?
Mr. Bernhardt: Based on past practices from the committee, no, I don't think the committee would simply wait five years. There would be periodic updates sought with reports back to the committee because, as members know and as new members can imagine, those time frames can change. Over the next five years there may well be new advice, or in this case there may be partial actions taken. It looks like this is going to be rolled out in stages. To maybe look less cynical and pessimistic, there may be partial resolutions coming over the course of the next five years. Hopefully that will be the case.
But, yes, we would propose periodically asking the department where things stand and coming back to the committee with those updates.
Mr. Bélanger: In the summary, it says we got a recent letter from the department that advises it will take another five years to do the work. Did that letter explain why?
Mr. Bernhardt: Not precisely. I think in this case part of that may have been due to the fact that changes to the enabling acts were coming forward. I suspect that wasn't the case when the project was commenced back in 2008 or 2009. That may have held things up.
There's some indication that they were forced to do a bit of a rethink when the committee commented on what they had done in phase 1, because they had at that time indicated they wanted to look at it before they moved on to the next phase as that may raise issues that require a rethinking. So part of that may have been devoting resources to responding to the committee's comments, which, as I recall, were quite extensive on the 2009 phase 1 of this project.
I suspect it may simply be the fact that it has turned out to be a bigger task than originally contemplated. As I say, these are all very substantial, lengthy and technical regulations, hundreds and hundreds of pages.
Mr. Albas: I do understand the predicament. We have nine very complex sets of regulations. We have an overhaul proposed by the department and then we have Bill C-5, the Offshore Health and Safety Bill, at third reading. I think the prudent thing to do would be to simply wait, monitor the file, and after the regulations for Bill C-5 are introduced, maybe at that point counsel can write to the department and ask for an update on the next phase.
I'm thinking this will probably take about a year, because that is a big chunk of legislation and seems to have all-party support thus far. If counsel wants a shorter time frame, I'm open to that. However, when you have that large a piece of legislation, coupled with nine separate very large sets of regulations that are all going into modernization, it seems almost the equivalent of changing your engine while you're driving. Hopefully this can be done in a very straightforward manner, but it is a large job.
Senator Hervieux-Payette: I was wondering why there was a Canada one, a Newfoundland one and a Nova Scotia one. Why would there be different installations? The one in Nova Scotia seems to be a bit like the one in Newfoundland, and that is complicated for nothing. Why complicate things like that? They should be submitted to the same standard.
Mr. Bernhardt: And in fact, they are. A lot of these regulations do parallel one another. They're not exactly mirrors, but in many cases they're quite close. I think that's what the department is referring to as framework regulations. Rather than having a Canada, a Newfoundland and a Nova Scotia regulation, there will simply be one regulation dealing with each aspect.
Senator Hervieux-Payette: If there is some exploration in the Gulf of St. Lawrence for Quebec, once we have finished our war with the next province, there would be a Quebec one as well. It sounds a little awkward that we would go with one regulation per province.
Mr. Bernhardt: From what I understand, one of the things that will come out of this whole initiative is that there will be fewer regulations.
Senator Hervieux-Payette: It gives more sense to what's going on. Okay.
Senator Bellemare: I want to make sure I understood that Mr. Albas was suggesting that we seek an update in a year's time. Is that it?
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): Yes.
Mr. Albas: A shorter time frame, that's fine.
Senator Bellemare: I'm okay with that.
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): So we have agreement?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2005-206 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE NATIONAL PARKS OF CANADA FISHING REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix N, p. 6N:1.)
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): Item 14 on our agenda concerns the inclusion of aggregate catch limits for salmon in Gros Morne, which is now promised for late this year.
Mr. Abel: That's about it, Madam Chair. The committee struggled to have what should be a simple correction made from the department. The department expects it should be done this year. If members are satisfied with that, counsel could seek a progress report and continue to monitor the file.
Ms. Ambler: I would concur with counsel. Given that we have the new time frame of late 2014, why don't we just keep on top of it and check back then.
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): All right. Agreed?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2011-261 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE OFF-ROAD COMPRESSION-IGNITION ENGINE EMISSION REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix O, p. 6O:1.)
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): Next is Item 15 under "Action Promised (?)." Four of the points we had raised with respect to Regulations Amending the Off-Road Compression-Ignition Engine Emission Regulations were taken under advisement by Environment Canada and a fifth point was addressed adequately.
Mr. Abel: That's correct, Madam Chair. I should begin by noting that there's a translation error in the English version of the note prepared for today. Under the issue heading, the end of the paragraph states that the department's answer to the fifth point was "deemed satisfactory" by the committee. This should say that the committee "may find it satisfactory." The same error is found at the last paragraph in the summary heading.
As you mentioned, for four of the five points the department didn't necessarily agree with the committee's position but allowed that the provisions could be improved. Perhaps a further commitment could be obtained.
On point 1, the department prefers not to make an amendment. This concerns the difference identified by counsel between the French and English versions of section 8(2)(b). In essence, the French version requires that a national emissions mark or label must be resistant to intemperate weather. The English version simply requires that the mark or label be resistant to any weather. The department's June 20 letter argued that in the context of this provision both versions amount to the same thing, that the marker label must be resistant to abnormal weather.
Counsel then pointed out that the term "any weather" in the English version requires that the marker label must resist normal weather that results in wear or spoiling of a mark or label, such as exposure to sun on sunny days. It was also noted that the mere fact that the department had to resort to quite a lengthy argument to paint the two versions as equivalent suggests there is some possibility of ambiguity.
This led the department, in its November 5 letter, to suggest that a sunny day might be considered intemperate weather.
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): It's abnormal here.
Mr. Abel: While the department uses the phrase "intense sun" and this could beg the question as what amounts to intense sun, this would be beside the point and not what counsel suggested. Normal weather, through wind, humidity, non-intense sunlight and other effects could presumably cause wear and tear. "Any weather" in English means more than just intemperate or abnormal weather. It's not outside the bounds of possibility that a dispute could arise concerning the wear and tear caused by normal weather.
Just because it has not been a problem yet for the department or for the people governed by these regulations, as the department notes, it doesn't allay the obligation to address what seems to be an obvious discrepancy. If members concur, a further letter could be drafted pursuing that matter and seeking a firmer commitment on the other points.
Senator Unger: I agree with counsel that we write back and ask for a time frame because this seems to be going back and forth. There may still be ambiguity, but write back and ask for a time frame.
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): Thank you very much. Agreed?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2005-247 — NEW SUBSTANCES NOTIFICATION REGULATIONS (CHEMICALS AND POLYMERS)
(For text of documents, see Appendix P, p. 6P:1.)
SOR/2005-248 — NEW SUBSTANCES NOTIFICATION REGULATIONS (ORGANISMS)
(For text of documents, see Appendix Q, p. 6Q:1.)
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): Next are Items 16 and 17 under "Action Promised." Are there any comments that need to be made on these, counsel?
Mr. Bernhardt: The two files gave rise to identical concerns. Again, it was a case of inconsistencies between the regulations and the terminology used in the act. Corrections have been promised and we can monitor those in the usual fashion.
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): Thank you.
SOR/2014-5 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE PRESCRIBED INFORMATION FOR THE DESCRIPTION OF A DESIGNATED PROJECT REGULATIONS
SOR/2012-148 — PRESCRIBED INFORMATION FOR THE DESCRIPTION OF A DESIGNATED PROJECT REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix R, p. 6R:1.)
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): For the record, do we want to talk about Item 18 where action has been taken?
Mr. Bernhardt: Very briefly, SOR/2014-5 makes five amendments that the committee requested in connection with 2012-148. I'll just indicate, perhaps editorially, that this does demonstrate that matters can be addressed relatively quickly where there's a will to do so. The first letter to the department was August 2012. The amendments were made in January 2014.
C.R.C. C. 386 CANADA PENSION PLAN (SOCIAL INSURANCE NUMBERS) REGULATIONS
SI/2004-16 — ORDER AMALGAMATING AND COMBINING COMMUNICATION CANADA WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS AND GOVERNMENT SERVICES
SI/2009-10 — ORDER AMALGAMATING AND COMBINING THE PUBLIC SERVICE HUMAN RESOURCES MANAGEMENT AGENCY OF CANADA WITH THE TREASURY BOARD UNDER THE PRESIDENT OF THE TREASURY BOARD AND UNDER THE SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY BOARD
SI/2013-57 — ORDER AMENDING THE CANADIAN PASSPORT ORDER
SI/2013-104 — PAYMENTS RECEIVED UNDER THE ATLANTIC GROUNDFISH LICENCE RETIREMENT PROGRAM REMISSION ORDER
SI/2013-106 — WITHDRAWAL FROM DISPOSAL OF CERTAIN TRACTS OF TERRITORIAL LANDS IN THE NORTHWEST TERRITORIES (KWETS'OOTL'ÀÀ (NORTH ARM OF GREAT SLAVE LAKE))
SI/2013-108 — ORDER FIXING NOVEMBER 1, 2013 AS THE DAY ON WHICH THE ACT COMES INTO FORCE
SI/2013-109 — TRANSFER OF DUTIES ORDER
SI/2013-110 — ORDER REPEALING ORDER IN COUNCIL P.C. 2008-12 AND DESIGNATING THE MINISTER OF HEALTH AS THE APPROPRIATE MINISTER WITH RESPECT TO THE CANADIAN FOOD INSPECTION AGENCY FOR THE PURPOSES OF THE ACT
SI/2013-111 — ORDER FIXING NOVEMBER 1, 2013 AS THE DAY ON WHICH THE ACT COMES INTO FORCE
SI/2013-112 — ORDER FIXING OCTOBER 24, 2013 AS THE DAY ON WHICH THE ACT COMES INTO FORCE
SI/2013-114 — ORDER REPEALING ORDER IN COUNCIL P.C. 1999-472 AND DESIGNATING THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY FOR THE PURPOSES OF THE ACT
SI/2013-115 — ORDER FIXING NOVEMBER 1, 2013 AS THE DAY ON WHICH THE ACT COMES INTO FORCE
SI/2013-116 — ORDER FIXING NOVEMBER 25, 2013 AS THE DAY ON WHICH CERTAIN PROVISIONS OF THE ACT COME INTO FORCE
SI/2013-117 — ORDER FIXING OCTOBER 30, 2013 AS THE DAY ON WHICH DIVISION 11 OF PART 4 OF THE ACT COMES INTO FORCE
SI/2013-118 — ORDER AMENDING THE ACCESS TO INFORMATION ACT HEADS OF GOVERNMENT INSTITUTIONS DESIGNATION ORDER
SI/2013-119 — ORDER AMENDING THE PRIVACY ACT HEADS OF GOVERNMENT INSTITUTIONS DESIGNATION ORDER
SOR/2008-22 — REVIEW PANEL REGULATIONS
SOR/2012-110 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE MIGRATORY BIRDS REGULATIONS
SOR/2012-225 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE IMMIGRATION AND REFUGEE PROTECTION REGULATIONS
SOR/2012-233 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE ASSESSMENT OF FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS REGULATIONS, 2001
SOR/2013-126 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE MIGRATORY BIRDS REGULATIONS
SOR/2013-150 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE IMMIGRATION AND REFUGEE PROTECTION REGULATIONS
SOR/2013-158 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE VETERANS ALLOWANCE REGULATIONS
SOR/2013-159 — REGULATIONS REPEALING THE UNITED NATIONS SIERRA LEONE REGULATIONS
Mr. Bernhardt: Finally, under "Statutory Instruments Without Comment" are listed 25 instruments that we have reviewed and found they comply with all the committee's criteria.
For new members, these are simply listed by title, but we always have copies available at the meeting for members if they wish to look at them.
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): Thank you very much.
Mr. Bélanger: I have a bit of a delicate issue I would like to raise. In the fall and until the beginning of this year, when counsel made their presentations to the committee, a certain proportion of those presentations were in French. Unless the first three files from this morning were presented in French, I would like to point out that all the other files were presented in English. I do not know whether this has to do with a lack of resources, but I would like to raise awareness among the committee staff when it comes to linguistic duality in Canada and in Parliament. I really appreciated the fact that some of the presentations used to be made in French, and I am somewhat disappointed that this is no longer the case.
The Joint Chair (Ms. Charlton): Thank you very much, Mr. Bélanger. The same issue was raised by Ms. Quach last week. I have spoken to counsel about it and have been assured that at future meetings a good part of the presentation will be made in French as well. I thank you for raising the issue.
(The committee adjourned.)