REGS Committee Meeting
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Proceedings of the Standing Joint Committee for the
Scrutiny of Regulations
Issue 1 - Evidence - April 14, 2016
OTTAWA, Thursday, April 14, 2016
The Standing Joint Committee for the Scrutiny of Regulations met this day at 8:31 a.m. for the review of statutory instruments and for the consideration of a draft budget.
Senator Pana Merchant and Mr. Harold Albrecht (Joint Chairs) in the chair.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Good morning and welcome.
There is an item of business that is not on your agenda. You have all been given a handout relating to the budget authorization, and because it relates to the Senate, I will let Senator Merchant take care of it.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Good morning, colleagues. I see that my supervisor is here, Senator Runciman. He is supposed to watch out for me and later tell me all the mistakes I have made so I don't do them twice.
I was a schoolteacher and I had to go through this: You practise and then you get your own classroom.
Regarding this budgetary item, you have received it. It has gone through the House of Commons, through your own instruments, but we have to submit this to the Senate for approval.
Could I have someone move the motion?
Senator Runciman: So moved.
Senator Moore: Seconded.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): All in favour?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Thank you.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Thank you, Senator Merchant. We will come back to you later.
We will move through the agenda items. You all have the summary in the front of your binder, which will be your guide for working through the agenda items. We will be relying heavily on our staff in terms of guiding us through these first few meetings, as I think many of us are new to the committee.
Mr. Bernhardt, please start us off with Item 1.
AUSTRALIA-NEW ZEALAND SCRUTINY OF LEGISLATION CONFERENCE, PERTH, AUSTRALIA, JULY 11-14, 2016 (LETTER OF INVITATION)
Peter Bernhardt, General Counsel to the Committee: The committee has an invitation to a conference in Australia in July. This is the Australia-New Zealand Scrutiny of Legislation Conference. These conferences are held every other year, and they have been going on since 1980. The provisional conference program is in the materials. Representatives of the joint committee have attended I believe on two or three occasions. The last time was in 2009.
In the materials there is also the report on that conference that the committee tabled. It was the Canberra conference in 2009.
The question this morning to consider is whether there is, first, any interest in having the committee represented at the conference and, if so, what the next steps might be in terms of numbers and draft budgets.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): To start off, are any committee members interested in attending this conference from July 11 to 14?
Mr. Brassard: I would be interested in attending the conference.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Senator Merchant is interested. Are there any others?
Senator Runciman: I might be, but I have to think about it.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Mr. El-Khoury and Mr. Anandasangaree. We have four now.
It becomes a matter of budgetary considerations. Do our staff have any estimate as to what the cost would be to send a member?
Mr. Bernhardt: No, not yet. The next steps would be either to refer it to the steering committee or, at this point and on the basis of a given number of representatives, ask to have a draft budget prepared that could be considered, adjusted and dealt with by the committee.
Mr. Badawey: So moved.
Mr. Bernhardt: I would point out that we are getting fairly short in terms of time.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): We are well beyond the deadline already in terms of application, but it's whether they will give special consideration.
Mr. Zimmer: I would speak for Mr. Genuis, for whom I am sitting in today. I would put his name forward because I think he would be interested. I'm not completely sure, but I would rather he be in the list than not.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Mr. Genuis, as well. Make a note of that.
The big question will be in terms of what kind of representation we should send and what kind of budgetary item we wish to consider requesting.
Mr. Badawey: I move that we prepare a budget for consideration at the next meeting.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Staff will prepare a budget, dependent on the six, I think, that we have now who are interested.
Senator Moore: Chair, I am thinking about the time frame you mentioned. First, this committee rarely travels, so I think we should do this. It has always been valuable to the committee since I've been on it to have a solid delegation from our committee to attend these events.
When is the next meeting? I am looking at the deadline here. Is it next week?
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): It's next Thursday.
Senator Moore: Is that okay, counsel?
Mr. Bernhardt: That would be the question.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Could I have one of our staff comment?
Adam Thompson, Joint Clerk of the Committee: We can work to prepare a budget for next week. There are questions as far as consideration by the respective houses for approval of those budgets, but we can certainly get the ball rolling.
Senator Moore: Would that be enough time to get an application in?
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): It was pointed out earlier that the expected deadline was February 19, so we are a little beyond that. We would need special consideration by the committee that is organizing it in order to have our application considered.
Mr. Brassard: I would echo the comments of the senator. It has been seven years since we have sent a delegation to any form of legislative conference with respect to the scrutiny of regulations, so I think it is important that we do. It is also important that we have several new members of the committee, so if we are going to find a mix, let us find a mix of some of those new members as well as some of the more experienced members. There is a lot of value for us being so new on the committee to learn from this conference.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): I'm sensing a consensus that we want to prepare a budget, have a look at what that might look like and then decide how many we wish to apply to send.
Is there any disagreement with that summary? Are we good with that?
We have a motion then to prepare the budget. All in favour of the motion of Mr. Badawey have the staff prepare a budget for next week?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Carried. Thank you.
INCORPORATION BY REFERENCE IN REGULATIONS ACT
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Next is Item 2 on our agenda.
Mr. Bernhardt: This item is chiefly for members' information, particularly for the new members to bring them up-to- date on an issue the committee spent quite a bit of time on in the previous Parliament.
The Incorporation by Reference in Regulations Act is now in force; it came into force in June. The purpose of the act was to resolve concerns raised by the joint committee in connection with incorporation by reference. Those concerns were raised in 2007 in a report from this committee. In 2009, the committee also made its views known to the Minister of Justice as to the form that it would prefer to see any legislation of this type take. The committee also provided a written brief to the committees that studied the bill when it went through the two houses.
By way of going right back to the beginning, when Parliament confers a power to make regulations, the regulation- maker usually exercises this power by drafting the text of the regulations setting out the rules. A regulation-maker can also decide that what they want to do is use the contents of an existing document, such as an international standard, a convention, a treaty or an agreement, in the regulation. One way to do that would be to repeat word for word that text of that other document in the regulation.
Another way to do that is simply to refer to the document, and that is called incorporation by reference. The legal effect of incorporation by reference is to write the incorporated document into the regulations just as if it actually appeared there word for word.
Doing that for an existing document is simply a drafting shortcut. It is uncontroversial and presents no problem. Sometimes, however, the regulation-maker wishes to incorporate by reference future amendments to that document such that any time that standard or treaty is amended, those changes are automatically incorporated into the regulations. This is done through referring to the document with the standard phrase in the law "as amended from time to time." This is called open or ambulatory incorporation by reference.
For decades, it had been the position of the committee that to do open incorporation by reference, a regulation- maker required clear, express authority in the enabling act. The committee's position was rooted in the rule against subdelegation, which is a legal principle that states that a person who has been given a law-making power cannot delegate that power in turn to somebody else in the absence of express authority. The principle is designed to protect Parliament's choice as to who is to make the regulations. For the committee, allowing someone else who amends a document to have those amendments automatically put into the law in effect means that somebody other than a regulation-maker is making rules.
The Department of Justice never agreed with the committee. It always maintained that open incorporation by reference was simply a drafting technique and involved no delegation of power.
Although the department didn't accept the committee's view, in the end it decided to develop legislation to resolve this impasse and to put in general rules governing incorporation by reference when it is used on all federal regulations. The result was the Incorporation by Reference in Regulations Act, and it adds these general rules to the Statutory Instruments Act.
Now the basic rule is that a regulation-making authority can always use incorporation by reference with open incorporation by reference. You can always incorporate a document as amended from time to time.
This is a much broader approach than the committee advocated. The committee proposed to grant this general authorization only for incorporation of other federal and provincial legislation, expressing a preference that any other authority to incorporate as amended from time to time should be given in individual statutes as needed on a case-by- case basis.
That being said, there are some limits on the power to use open incorporation by reference. A regulation-making authority cannot incorporate a document as amended from time to time if it, itself, produced the document, either jointly or with some other body. The intent there is to prevent regulation-makers from using incorporation by reference to end run the entire regulation-making process by simply incorporating the document that they themselves created. You are not allowed to do that, although, again, there are some exceptions.
The act also permits the use of a formula in which at least one of the factors will vary after the regulations are made. Typically, what the committee saw was that you put in place a fee and then provide that the fee automatically increases as the consumer price index increases. The committee, in some circumstances, objected to the use of those kinds of formulas. That is now permitted.
The new rules apply to all regulation-making powers already conferred by Parliament, and the act confirms that open incorporation by reference, when it's used at present in existing federal regulations, is valid. Again, this reflects the Department of Justice's view that these things were authorized in the first place.
Of course, as far as the committee is concerned, the effect is to retroactively validate a large number of incorporation by references that the committee would have and had objected to in the past.
So while the new rules are broader than what the committee advocated for, they do provide certainty and they resolve this long-standing dispute.
The note goes on to explain that, in doing so, there is likely to be a new issue that the committee will have to deal with going down the road as it encounters these regulations that incorporate by reference as amended from time to time, and that is the issue of accessibility. The notion of incorporation by reference, when it is used, gives rise to issues of accessibility; you have to go outside the regulation to find this document. The document may or may not be easy to find; it may be available free of charge; there may be a cost; it may exist in only one official language, and so on.
The act simply says that incorporated documents have to be accessible. There is no definition of "accessible" and no guidelines or indication of what that means.
As things go forward, I think members will have to look at some of these issues and questions as set out in the note. I expect the committee will, over the course of time, develop its own jurisprudence, if you will, on how it will look at these various issues.
There is a defence in the act against being found guilty of an offence or charged a penalty for contravening something that wasn't accessible. But, again, we have the same problem: What is "accessible"? What does that mean? Those aren't necessarily issues the committee has to grapple with this morning, but it is, in a sense, a heads-up that while, as you will see later in the agenda, this does resolve a number of the committee's files, this further issue is likely to come up down the road.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): For clarification, in the first paragraph, the Incorporation by Reference in Regulations Act has been but into law as of June 18, 2015. However, if I understand it directly, Mr. Bernhardt, you are suggesting on page 5 that the bulleted items are ones that will likely come back to us for resolution. For now, this is primarily information-based, and we are open for discussion.
Mr. Bernhardt: Precisely.
Mr. Anandasangaree: I have two questions for Mr. Bernhardt. What happens if there is a conflict in the regulation and the reference document? Which one supersedes the other?
Second, in terms of accessibility, I assume that the regulations are available online, and that would probably be the easiest way to handle it.
Mr. Bernhardt: To answer the second question first, yes, the regulation is available online, but if the regulation simply says "all transport companies must comply with ISO standard XYZ," that standard will not be there. Depending on where that comes from, it may be easy or not so easy to get one's hands on it and to know that one has an up-to-date copy. That is the issue there.
You are right. Some jurisdictions require that if a document is incorporated, the government has to either post a link or a document with the regulation. We have no such requirement.
Mr. Anandasangaree: I believe that our online portal doesn't allow for external links. I think they are all internal links, if I am not mistaken.
Mr. Bernhardt: I think so.
The other question is that in the case of a conflict, sometimes that will be addressed in the regulations. Occasionally, but not often, you will see a provision that says which prevails in the case of a conflict. In the absence of that, you are left with the usual rules of statutory interpretation, because the incorporated provision is now part of the regulations. In a sense, it is no different than if you had two actual provisions of the regulations that conflicted. If it came before a court, the court would have to find a way to resolve that.
Ms. Jordan: I may have misunderstood, so bear with me. You said at one point that the information is available free, except when it is not — that there were exceptions.
Mr. Bernhardt: Yes.
Ms. Jordan: What would those exceptions be?
Mr. Bernhardt: It depends on the organization. For example, you can be incorporating everything from provincial law, which is clearly going to be accessible; to a UN convention, which is going to be accessible; to an ISO standard, which is accessible if you pay; to an American regulation, which may be accessible but only in English. So it will run the entire gamut.
Take the International Maritime Organization, for example. A lot of their standards under the Canada Shipping Act are incorporated. It is very jealous of its proprietary rights and doesn't release any of its regulations, guidelines or standards, other than at a fairly hefty price.
Ms. Jordan: Would it be safe to assume someone will have to define "accessible"?
Mr. Bernhardt: In the absence of it coming before the courts, it may, at least as far as Parliament is concerned, fall to this committee to do that.
Mr. Di Iorio: That was my question. To your knowledge, has there ever been a court challenge to this legislative/ regulatory technique?
Mr. Bernhardt: No. There have been cases dealing with the issue, whether incorporation as amended from time to time is authorized under a particular statute, but the accessibility requirement is something new. That has only been in force since June.
Mr. Di Iorio: So that could pose a problem in terms of validity by way of some of them not being translated, for example.
Also, there is the ambulatory aspect. Citizens have the right to know what the law is, and if they have that right, they should be able to ascertain it in a reasonable time, with reasonable resources. But that has never been challenged up to now?
Mr. Bernhardt: Not yet. As I say, I think the first place it will be challenged may well turn out to be here.
Mr. Di Iorio: But we might not know. It might be in any area of federal jurisdiction — any regulation. Somebody could be confronted with sanctions, consequences or being requested to abide or not abide by one and decides to use that argument.
Mr. Bernhardt: Absolutely.
Senator Moore: Those were my exact concerns. We are supposed to be making available to the citizens all the laws that will impact them. I don't think it is for Joe Citizen to have to hire a lawyer to try to track down a law.
Where are we? Are we saying, "Okay, we will go through this and will be looking at the various cases that come before us, and if we find instances where this is not acceptable, we would then recommend an amendment to the act"? Is that how we would fix it if we got to that point?
Mr. Bernhardt: I suppose the first question for the committee is if the committee decided a particular thing wasn't accessible, what would the department have to do such that it would be accessible? It may not require a change to the law, but it might require the department doing something more than simply saying, "Anyone who wants this can get it for $500."
Mr. Di Iorio: What strikes me is that I understand that any authority at some point realizes that they might have to react quickly. This is a fast, evolving world; therefore, they do have to take action sometimes, and that is why ambulatory amendments, incorporations by reference are techniques that sometimes is required.
What strikes me is that there is nothing to counterbalance that and say, "Well, we have all this technology at our disposal, and we are not going to do anything." As the learned senator just pointed out, somebody would have to hire a lawyer. But let us not forget it would not be any lawyer; it would be a lawyer that is versed and specialized, and therefore more costly.
I think it is our duty to do something about it or to alert whoever — I am new here — but whoever is in charge of this. There might be a group or different disjointed individuals, but we have to bring this to their attention. Otherwise, it becomes a machine, and nobody controls the machine.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Along those lines, how quickly does the department react to something like this? Is this something that goes on forever? Do we have any power to make them speed up at all?
Mr. Bernhardt: The committee has the disallowance power. Aside from that, the committee has the same powers as any committee. I can draw it to the attention of the department or the responsible minister, who can report the matter to the houses.
The note was premised at this point on simply alerting members that these were the sorts of questions. If members feel strongly that this is something right from the get-go that they wish to pursue on a more general basis, one option would be simply to write to the Department of Justice and pose these questions.
What we heard from the department while the bill was going through the houses was that "accessible" to them means you can get it with reasonable effort. I never found that to be particularly enlightening. It is like "accessible" means "accessible."
There are some particular questions here. It is for members to decide whether they want to start a general discussion of these principles or await a particular instance where it looks like it causes concern.
If you are incorporating a provincial law, I think everyone would agree that the law is accessible. In a lot of cases, these issues may not arise. There are cases where they are likely to.
Senator Runciman: We did go through all this last year. The committee's position was put before the house committee and certainly the Senate committee.
We have a new government and a new minister in this role. I don't see a downside to advising them that this committee remains concerned about this going forward and that we wanted to alert them. If their officials can see the merit in the concerns of the committee, we would ask them to give this their full consideration. Something like that. Simply put it on the record and let them know right from the get-go that this is the position. The committee hasn't changed; these are the concerns and we would appreciate it if they review them and respond.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Are you prepared to make a motion, Senator Runciman?
Senator Runciman: So moved.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): So moved that the committee write a letter to the Department of Justice and indicate the concerns. Some of them are outlined in the bullets on page 5.
Is there further discussion on the motion?
Mr. Di Iorio: I feel strongly about this. I agree with the senator.
I will give you an anecdote. I am a lawyer by trade. I was driving, and in my car was a Court of Appeal judge and a Superior Court judge. We had to park, so we got out of the car, but we couldn't figure out whether we had the right to park there. These are knowledgeable individuals; they apply and interpret the law. But we couldn't figure out if we had the right to park there. I point that out, because this ambulatory incorporation could lead to that result. We have to get it right.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): I think we have general consensus around the table that we want to take proactive action. All those in favour of the motion?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Carried. That was a good discussion.
SOR/2004-109 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE PULP AND PAPER EFFLUENT REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix A, p. A:1.)
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Next is Item No. 3.
Mr. Bernhardt: At its May 28, 2015 meeting, the committee instructed counsel to meet with representatives of the Department of the Environment to discuss the opposing views of the department and the committee on the authority for provisions in the Pulp and Paper Effluent Regulations to grant permission for and place conditions on the deposit of effluent from a mill into a waste water system. This would include a municipal sewer system. The committee has concluded there is no authority for these provisions; the department disagrees.
The committee has taken the view that placing effluent from a mill into a facility like a municipal water treatment system does not constitute the deposit of a deleterious substance in water frequented by fish or any place where the substance may enter such water so as to be subject to the prohibition set out in subsection 36(3) of the Fisheries Act. The department's characterization of subsection 36(3) is that it is "unbounded." I think that was its word.
The problem for the committee is that if the transfer of mill effluent to a waste water system attracts the prohibition in the act, it follows that the Fisheries Act is contravened each time any household in Canada deposits deleterious substance into a municipal sewer system. If the flushing of household waste as deleterious to fish is not a deposit for the purposes of the prohibition in the Fisheries Act, what is the difference between the two?
On the committee's reading, the regulations grant permission to do something that no permission is needed for in the first place in an attempt to put conditions on that.
It may be worth keeping in mind as well that the conditions are what the department has described as minor monitoring and reporting conditions. If you are a paper mill, so long as you monitor and report, you can dump anything you want into the system. So whether you comply with the regulations or not has absolutely no effect on what actually goes into the municipal system.
As per the committee's directions, that meeting took place September 29. At that time we were told that no consideration had been given and no consideration would be given to amending the act to make it clear that the deposit of a deleterious substance includes placing the substance in a facility for treatment, but it doesn't include placing household waste in a municipal treatment system.
The reasons that the department was not going to consider this were, first, the amendments were unnecessary.
Second, even if placing household waste into a municipal sewer system contravenes the act, it is unlikely that any such contraventions would be prosecuted. The previous attempts to revise the Fisheries Act have encountered significant obstacles and that the drafting of the amendments might be complicated.
We asked the officials whether they ever considered imposing these requirements on pulp and paper mills as parts of the mills' emergency response plan; doing that would simply make the regulations unnecessary. Their reply to that was that since there were regulations, it didn't need to think about doing that.
The department conceded there must be some point at which the sequence of events between an initial so-called deposit of a substance and its eventual entry into water frequented by fish is so long, and there are so many links in the chain, it cannot be said that the initial placing of the substance contravenes the act. But in the department's view, it doesn't need to consider this question since its enforcement policies and discretion as to whether to prosecute make any consideration of this unnecessary.
We then asked for an example of a transfer of a substance that would fall outside subsection 36(3). The reply was that that was a question of policy and it wasn't really any of the committee's business.
We pointed out to the department that the issue was not the department's policy on when to prosecute contraventions but, rather, the department's interpretation of the law.
The department suggested that an expansive reading of subsection 36(3) is appropriate, but it has conceded that there are some limits. The question, then, is what the department sees those limits to be. We were told that isn't a question that is given much thought, but it might provide some further explanation if the committee decided to press the department further.
In short, it seems that the department takes the view that all human activity contravenes the Fisheries Act, and then it falls to the department to decide which of these activities are worth prosecuting. This simply can't be what Parliament intended.
As to where things are at, after over a decade, a number of letters back and forth, letters to the minister and meetings with departmental representatives, the department and the committee continue to hold opposing views, and it falls to the committee as to how it wishes to proceed.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): It sounds like we might be in the rare situation of calling witnesses.
Mr. Kmiec: In reading this, subsection 36(3) seems really broad. I'm new to the committee; I understand that. I'm conflicted on this, because I read the text and that is what I am interpreting, not the intention of the original drafters of the legislation. It is too broad, so the department is right on that point. It's one of those situations where the effort you put in is what you get out of it.
On the other hand, with the department saying that basically all human activities are deleterious to the environment, sure, I guess that could mean an interpretation of the act, but they have limited resources that only go after the big fish instead of the small fish, to use a pun — I worked hard on that.
I think they are absolutely wrong. Isn't part of this also regulated by the provinces? Waterways, fish activities and fish hatcheries? In a previous life, I worked for Fish and Wildlife and Sustainable Resource Development back in Alberta and we regulated many of these activities. Pulp mills are also provincially regulated.
As well, did they take into account in their enforcement activity what the provinces are doing? I think this is a situation in which maybe we do need witnesses.
I read this memo that committee members sent back and I agree. They are skirting the issue; they don't want to address it directly. I am looking at counsel: Is this one of those situations where we call the witnesses and make then appear here and explain, piece by piece, their reasoning? Or do we tell them that they need to revise the act and make it perfectly clear what they intend to do?
Mr. Bernhardt: I think you have raised a number of points that relate to the complexity here.
Yes, there is a certain overlap with provincial legislation. The environmental aspect here relates simply to fish, so that is how the federal jurisdiction comes in: It has the authority to deal with the fishery.
The Fisheries Act is a very old act, and this provision may well date to the 19th century. There are aspects of the Fisheries Act that go back, literally, to the first Parliament after Confederation. It may simply be that these aspects weren't in the minds of anyone at the time the bill was originally passed. The farthest up the line you could probably get was a farmer dumping manure on a field and having rain wash it into a stream. In this day and age, we have gone way past that in terms of environmental concerns.
Yes, you are right that when you read the act on its face, it is as broad as broad can be. The difficulty with that is you end up with a situation where everyone in Canada basically contravenes the Fisheries Act every day, and that simply doesn't make sense. There have to be some limits.
The department's response is, "Don't worry about that. We wouldn't charge anybody that didn't deserve to be charged."
Mr. El-Khoury: I believe, in this particular case, the Minister of the Environment should be involved, too.
Mr. Di Iorio: To hear that it is unlikely that they would be prosecuted, the name of this country, and I saw it this morning again, is Canada, and we are a sophisticated country. We don't legislate and proceed in such a manner. We don't leave it to an authority to decide who they pull out of the water and who they don't.
I think it is important, especially since there has been so much work done — you indicated there has been almost 10 years of work done here — that we don't leave it like that. Otherwise, we are kind of condoning this legislative regulatory approach.
I agree with my learned colleague that this may well be an opportunity to call witnesses and draw the line as to what is acceptable and what is not acceptable as a legislative regulatory technique.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Are there any further comments? Is someone prepared to make a motion that we call Department of Environment officials and the minister, if she is available?
Mr. Kmiec: I so move.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Mr. Kmiec moves that we request that department officials and the Minister of Environment appear before the committee.
Timeline: We are heading into busy things on our agenda to finish out the year. Is it realistic to get them in before the end of June?
Mr. Bernhardt: I think so.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): I will leave it with our officials to decide.
Mr. Bernhardt: The committee can pick a date at one of its upcoming meetings or simply suggest several.
The Chair: Is there a date, Mr. Kmiec, before June 1 or June 15?
Mr. Kmiec: Tomorrow.
June would be fine, before the sport fishing season really kicks off.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Let us say before June 1?
Mr. Di Iorio: The only comment I would add — I repeat, I am new here.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Many of us are.
Mr. Di Iorio: When it comes to the calendar and what June looks like or doesn't look like, I have no idea. I could be very naive in that respect.
If it has been going on for 10 years and we wait until September or October to deal with it, I am okay with that. I don't know about the other members. I respect your opinions, but that would be acceptable to me.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Can we leave it to the discretion of Mr. Bernhardt and his team to try to work out a reasonable calendar?
I think your point is well taken, Mr. Di Iorio.
We have a motion on the floor. All in favour?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Carried.
SOR/2013-105 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE GREAT LAKES PILOTAGE TARIFF REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix B, p. 18:1.)
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Item 4 on our agenda is under the heading "Letters to and from Ministers."
Mr. Bernhardt: As amended by SOR/2013-105, section 4 of the regulations provided for a 12 per cent surcharge payable until December 31, 2014, on certain pilotage charges payable under the regulations. This amendment came into force on registration, which was May 24, 2013.
The problem was that the previous version of the regulations provided for this surcharge to expire December 31, 2012. Because the new regulation wasn't put in place until May 24, 2013, from January 1 to May 24 there was no surcharge in place. It came to light, however, that in fact the surcharge was collected during this period, nevertheless, and the amount in question was some $469,000.
The pilotage authority suggested that it did have a list of people who had paid the unlawful surcharges, but it would not be feasible to return the money.
The committee expressed some doubt as to why this should be the case, but in the end it decided to suggest to the Minister of Transport that if it was the case that repayments or credits weren't possible, then legislation should be introduced to retroactively validate this unlawful collection of money.
We have the letter from the former minister who agreed that the money should not have been collected, but the letter concludes that in light of the information provided by the authority, no validating legislation was necessary.
No indication is given as to what the information provided by the authority might be, but apparently it didn't affect the conclusion that there was no surcharge legally in place for the period in question since the minister does accept that the money shouldn't have been collected.
In June 2014, the pilotage authority did commit to putting all measures in place to guarantee that the future tariff and regulatory amendments come into force only on the date of registration. If that had been done going forward, the problem would not have reoccurred.
Having prepared for the meeting this morning, however, we have noted that the situation did arise again in 2015, notwithstanding the undertaking given by the pilotage authority.
As amended by SOR/2015-71, the regulations now provide that this surcharge is payable until December 31, 2016. This amendment, however, didn't come into force until March 27. Once again, we had the surcharge expiring at the end of the year and its renewal only coming into effect three months later.
Assuming — and we don't know at this point, and given the time of year, it may or may not be — that charges were collected during this period, I can only suggest that the pilotage authority doesn't take its illegal collection of money all that seriously.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Any comments or further action?
Ms. Jordan: Did they give a reason why they didn't feel it was feasible to give the money back?
Mr. Bernhardt: No. As I say, the committee, in its letter to the minister, expressed some doubt, given that the committee had been told there was a list, so they knew who the people were. The committee also, at one point, made the suggestion that rather than a refund, assuming most of these people are ongoing customers running ships through the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence Seaway, that the pilotage authority simply credit them the next year and it would all work out. Apparently that wasn't feasible, for whatever reason.
Senator Runciman: As this hasn't been around for 10 years, I would suggest that perhaps another letter, signed by the joint chairs, be sent to the new minister outlining our concerns and the seriousness with which the committee views this issue, and outlining what has happened recently, as the counsel just indicated to us, and asking for a prompt response.
Mr. Di Iorio: Each one of us in our lives has had to deal with, not necessarily this authority, but authorities of this nature in different walks of life.
To me it appears that this simply has not been taken seriously. They have the money and they want to keep it. They have decided, "We will just push it and push it, they'll get tired of it, and at some point we can keep the money." Our responsibility is, obviously, to the end users, and not necessarily only to the authority.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): The bigger factor here is that they need to get more accurate dates in terms of when things come into effect.
Mr. Di Iorio: It further compounds the fact that they don't take it seriously. They believe they have the right to the tax and they will keep the money.
Mr. Zimmer: How many vessels are we talking about for this amount of money?
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Do you know the number?
Mr. Bernhardt: We don't know.
Mr. Zimmer: I have an easy solution: Just reduce their budget by $470,000.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): That would be easy.
Mr. Di Iorio: It is an independent authority. We don't determine their budgets.
Mr. Zimmer: I wasn't clear about who actually pays their bill. If there is some federal funding going their way, then I would just clip that amount.
Mr. Bernhardt: I believe the federal authorities are meant to be self-financing.
Mr. Zimmer: There is no federal money going to these federal authorities at all?
Mr. Bernhardt: In the case of a deficit, I have no idea, but I think the legislation is premised on them charging fees to at least break even.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Senator Runciman, let us speak to the motion on the floor, which is that we have our officials prepare a letter for signature.
Senator Moore: I agree with Senator Runciman's motion. Do I understand these are monies that they have, which they haven't given back, but do they continue to collect the surcharge?
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Now the regulations are in effect, so they can collect it, but they weren't in effect for that particular time.
Senator Moore: Yes, I heard that they improperly collected it.
Mr. Bernhardt: There are two aspects for the committee to consider: the question of the money that has been collected, and then there's the question of making sure, going forward, that this doesn't become an annual situation. It is for members to decide on which aspect they wish to place the emphasis, or both.
Senator Moore: We are interested in both.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): All in favour of the motion by Senator Runciman?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Motion agreed to. We will write a letter. Obviously, Mr. Bernhardt will help us.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Did you include both?
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Yes, we definitely included both in the motion.
Senator Moore: The letter is going to whom?
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): The Minister of Transport.
Senator Moore: Thank you.
SOR/2015-49 — ORDER AMENDING THE CANADIAN CHICKEN MARKETING LEVIES ORDER
(For text of documents, see Appendix C, p. C:1.)
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): We will now move to Item 5 on our agenda under "New Instruments."
Evelyne Borkowski-Parent, Counsel to the Committee: The Statutory Instruments Act sets out requirements for the making of regulations, specifically, as regards their transmission, registration, coming into force and publication.
Subsection 9(1) of the Statutory Instruments Act prohibits a regulation from coming into force prior to its registration. Although a few exceptions to the rule do exist, subsection 9(2) stipulates that, in such cases, the Clerk of the Privy Council must be advised in writing of the reasons why, and I quote:
(2) . . . it is not practical for the regulation to come into force on the day on which it is registered.
In this case, the Chicken Farmers of Canada made the order on February 20, and the coming-into-force date was February 22.
The order, however, was registered by the Clerk of the Privy Council a day after it came into force, in other words, on February 23. Therefore, the coming-into-force date contravened subsection 9(1) of the act, unless the regulation- making authority advised the Clerk of the Privy Council beforehand of the reasons for the decision in question.
The problem could have been avoided had the provision been worded in accordance with one of the approaches suggested in the Federal Regulations Manual prepared by the Department of Justice, in the following manner: "This Order comes into force on February 22, 2015, but if it is registered after that day, it comes into force on the day on which it is registered." Since the order was not worded in such a way, the Farm Products Council of Canada was asked whether the reasons why it was not practical for the order to come into force on the day on which it was registered had been provided to the Clerk of the Privy Council, pursuant to subsection 9(2) of the act. In its response, the Farm Products Council of Canada indicated that the order had been transmitted to the Clerk of the Privy Council for registration within seven days of its being made. Be that as it may, the council's response addressed an entirely different stipulation, that pertaining to the transmission of regulations, and disregarded the issue of concern to the committee, the coming-into-force date.
A second attempt to explain the problem to the Farm Products Council of Canada was made, but to no avail. In its response, the council simply indicated that it would take the committee's recommendations into consideration for all further regulatory amendments, without addressing the actual issue or even giving any indication that it had understood the problem.
In conclusion, I would just point out that this is not the first instance in which the Farm Products Council of Canada appeared to be oblivious to its responsibilities as a regulation-making authority and that the committee has often encountered a similar lack of understanding on the council's part in the past.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): We have a different situation here. It is a bit more difficult to pay these guys back, I guess.
Are there any comments or questions? How do you wish to proceed on this one? Do you have a recommendation as to how we proceed, from the department?
Ms. Borkowski-Parent: At this point we will see, going down the road, if the problem still arises for further orders. There's little indication that they understand what has happened.
Senator Runciman: We will just monitor going forward.
Mr. Brassard: We have an indication that they are going to proceed on this basis going forward. Until the next regulation comes out, there is nothing we can do. Other than monitoring it, I would suggest no further action is required at this point, Mr. Chair.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Any further discussion? All are agreed with that? We have a consensus around that point?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2015-76 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE CANADIAN TURKEY MARKETING QUOTA REGULATIONS, 1990
(For text of documents, see Appendix D, p. D:1.)
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Next is agenda Item No. 6, and then I will turn it over to Senator Merchant to chair the rest of the meeting.
Ms. Borkowski-Parent: This file deals with another instance of inadequate drafting of coming into force provisions, albeit for different reasons. The schedule to the regulations enumerates, for the control period of April 26, 2015 to April 30, 2016, the quotas for interprovincial and international marketing of turkeys. It came to replace the previous schedule, which dealt with the period of April 27, 2014 to April 25, 2015. This is getting a bit technical.
This amendment to the regulations was brought into force on April 1, 2015, and by doing so there were no quotas set for the period going from April 1 to April 26, 2015, the start of the control period as stated in the schedule. It is so because once the new regulations were enacted, the replaced text was repealed and ceased to exist.
This legal vacuum could have been avoided if the coming into force date had been set for April 26, 2015, rather than on the day of registration.
In what is becoming a formulaic answer, the Farm Products Council responded that it will take recommendations into consideration at the time of further amendments.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): For clarification, the date of registration was April 22; is that correct? In the Canada Gazette, in the supporting documents, it is at the top.
Mr. Bernhardt: April 1 was registration.
Ms. Borkowski-Parent: Yes.
Mr. Bernhardt: April 22 was publication.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Okay, thank you. That is the part that I missed.
Committee members, what is your wish in terms of how we deal with this matter? Is there any further advice?
Mr. Bernhardt: The same. We will see as we go forward.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Hopefully the situation has improved going forward.
Mr. Di Iorio: What are our options? Obviously it was not taken seriously. They simply decided to do it their way.
Mr. Bernhardt: In this case the time has passed, so we now have a valid regulation and a valid time period. The issue is raised from our point of view more in the interests of making sure it doesn't happen again. We have this assurance that, "We will do it right the next time." We suggested an easy way to do it that is routinely done in federal regulations. These things are revised annually because it is an annual quota, so we will see.
Hopefully, it won't come back. If the problem arises, then it will come back into members' laps in a future meeting.
Mr. Di Iorio: Do I understand correctly that by the time the problem reaches us it is moot?
Mr. Bernhardt: It can be. In this case, the problem was a period of less than a month. Certainly there, and given the time since —
Mr. Di Iorio: That might explain their reaction, that by the time we were aware of it, it was moot, so why bother with it.
Mr. Bernhardt: Yes. We will keep that in mind and make sure it doesn't happen in the future.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): In the event that a complaint would arise from someone within the turkey marketing system, is it possible that we would need to deal with this retroactively in terms of the regulations weren't in place and they went beyond them? But we haven't had any.
Mr. Bernhardt: No. I suppose, in theory, during these three weeks someone wasn't allowed to market turkeys internationally because the province didn't have enough quota, and the person said, "There is no quota." The likelihood of that, I think, in the course of doing business with turkey farmers is not great.
Mr. Brassard: I would move that no further action be required.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): All in favour?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Carried.
I will turn it over to Senator Merchant now.
Senator Moore: We are going to monitor it, right?
Mr. Brassard: Monitor it, yes, similar to Item No. 5.
Senator Moore: We don't want them to think they can get away with something and start this little annual game.
Mr. Bernhardt: We will see on the next one.
Mr. Brassard: Just like Item No. 5.
SOR/94-718 — FRESH FRUIT AND VEGETABLE REGULATIONS, AMENDMENT
(For text of documents, see Appendix E, p. 1E:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): We will move on, then, to Item 7 under "Reply Unsatisfactory."
Ms. Borkowski-Parent: There were 90 points raised in the initial letter in 2012. The various points deal mainly with inherently vague criteria or criteria that were different than the ones spelled out in the administrative manuals applied by inspectors.
The committee has been awaiting an answer on the substance of these questions ever since, with any timeline provided so far by the department being systematically pushed back.
The last letter from the department, dated July 21, 2015, makes no mention as to when the committee can expect to receive a substantive response but that it is working on the Safe Food for Canadians Act regulations.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Any discussion?
Mr. Kmiec: By my reading, looking at the dates, this has been going on for four years. It is also a perfect example of when the government tries to regulate everything and doesn't do it very well, and then the administration of those rules is done poorly, not done at all or contradicts itself.
We need to write another letter to actually spell out the past, because looking at some of the memos that were sent, they just say, "We would like a response to the previous letter of such-and-such a date." Perhaps spell out for them exactly how long this has been going on in case there is someone new on the other side. That's my recommendation, that we send another letter but this time explain exactly the deficiencies and contradictions.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): That sounds very good.
Ms. Jordan: Do the letters get copied to the minister as well?
Mr. Bernhardt: Not routinely, but we can.
Ms. Jordan: I would suggest that the letter gets copied to the minister as well.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): We will leave it to our people to do that letter. Do we need a motion for that? No.
SOR/2007-255 — ELIGIBLE FINANCIAL CONTRACT REGULATIONS (CANADA DEPOSIT INSURANCE CORPORATION ACT)
SOR/2007-256 — ELIGIBLE FINANCIAL CONTRACT GENERAL RULES (BANKRUPTCY AND INSOLVENCY ACT)
SOR/2007-257 — ELIGIBLE FINANCIAL CONTRACT GENERAL RULES (COMPANIES' CREDITORS ARRANGEMENT ACT)
SOR/2007-258 — ELIGIBLE FINANCIAL CONTRACT REGULATIONS (WINDING-UP AND RESTRUCTURING ACT)
(For text of documents, see Appendix F, p. 1F:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Item No. 8 on our agenda is under the heading "Reply Unsatisfactory (?)."
Ms. Borkowski-Parent: These files were grouped together because two identical points were raised in connection with each of the instruments. In each case, the issues involve wording corrections. First, the French version of the term "derivatives agreement" — "contrat dérivé" — is broader in meaning than what is intended in the English version. Second, it is not clear what is meant by the term "clearing agency" — "agence de compensation et de dépôt" in French — which appears in the "financial intermediary" definition. Although the department seemed to be in agreement as to the need for clarification of the term, it suggested, in its most recent letter, that the matter was still under review. When asked about the time frame for the amendment of the definition of "derivatives agreement," the department stated only that it would undertake the amendment at the next available opportunity.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Comments from colleagues, please.
Senator Runciman: Perhaps we should write asking for clarity with respect to timelines on this.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Agreed?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2008-135 — ORDER AMENDING SCHEDULE I TO THE ACCESS TO INFORMATION ACT
SOR/2008-136 — ORDER AMENDING THE SCHEDULE TO THE PRIVACY ACT.
(For text of documents, see Appendix G, p. 1G:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Next is Item 9, under the same heading.
Ms. Borkowski-Parent: Both the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act provide for the Governor-in- Council to amend Schedule I, which lists entities considered to be government institutions by way of subordinate legislation.
This is unusual because the hierarchy of legal sources dictates that while an act can amend regulations, the opposite is not true unless you have a provision known as the Henry the VIII clause, which provides for such an amendment. The necessary implication is that whatever operation is to be achieved by subordinate legislation is strongly restricted to the language of the clause in question.
In this instance, the clause, subsection 77(2), gives the Governor-in-Council the authority to add an entity to the schedule but not to remove one.
In these two orders, the Governor-in-Council purported to remove the Office of Indian Residential Schools Resolution of Canada, which exceeds the authority of subsection 77(2).
The Privy Council Office has been researching the best avenue to deal with this problem and, as of last June, has not been able to specify a solution or a time frame.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): So that is June 2015. Is that enough time for them, do you feel, to come up with a solution? Is there any discussion?
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Just to point out, the response from the Privy Council president, or whatever her title was, was June 2015. She says that they are ". . . unable to make commitments on the Government's upcoming legislative agenda, but you may rest assured that we are well aware of the matter. . . ." I am not sure that is a very satisfactory response.
Mr. Brassard: It is awfully difficult for us to make a decision at this point, considering the circumstances. Perhaps what we should do is get general counsel to reply in response to this. Subject to committee approval, that would be my recommendation going forward.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Thank you very much, everybody. Do we want to go along with that?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2005-35 — CANADIAN TRANSPORTATION AGENCY GENERAL RULES.
(For text of documents, see Appendix H, p. 1H:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): There are three items under "Part Action Taken," the first of which is No. 10.
Ms. Borkowski-Parent: As was indicated in the note prepared for you today, the vast majority of the 29 points raised in connection with these rules were either addressed or pursued under the new rules enacted in 2014.
It is brought back here with a point of information for you this morning. It is worth noting that while an undertaking had been made by the agency with regard to the necessity of reciting the notice to the minister as a condition precedent in the executive order portion of the rules, recent case law makes a distinction between regulations and rules for the purposes of the Canada Transportation Act.
In light of this new case, it would appear that the re-citation is not necessary after all, and we could close the file.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Great.
Hon. Members: Hear, hear.
An Hon. Member: No more trees will die.
SOR/2012-138 — FIREARMS INFORMATION REGULATIONS (NON-RESTRICTED FIREARMS)
(For text of documents, see Appendix I, p. 1I:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Item No. 11 on our agenda was before the committee on April 25, 2013 and then again on November 20, 2014, and the department replied on March 18, 2015. What is the update?
Mr. Bernhardt: These regulations provide that a person cannot be required as a condition of a firearms licence to collect or keep point-of-sale data with respect to long guns. The intent is to prevent a chief firearms officer from requiring the keeping of records that contain information that was formerly in the long-gun registry.
The Firearms Act authorizes the Governor-in-Council to make regulations regulating the issuance of licences, regulating the keeping and destruction of records in relation to firearms. It is also the case that the act provides that a chief firearms officer may attach any reasonable condition to a licence that the chief firearms officer considers desirable in the particular circumstances and in the interests of the safety of the licence holder or any other person.
There is no express authority in the act to alter the scope of this discretion. For the committee, it followed that those regulation-making powers couldn't be exercised in a manner that would circumscribe the discretion given to chief firearms officers, so that if it was possible that a firearms officer in a particular situation could consider a condition desirable in particular circumstances, you couldn't make a regulation preventing him from imposing that condition.
The department never accepted that and argued that the power to limit the scope of the discretion was necessarily implied from the 2012 amendments to the Firearms Act that abolished the long-gun registry.
On the other hand, Parliament didn't limit this discretion as part of those amendments. Even if you consider this to be simply an oversight on Parliament's part, regulations can't be used to correct an oversight in the act. The Governor- in-Council has no authority to clarify or correct the act.
The Common Sense Firearms Licensing Act has now added what is subsection 58(1.1) to that act. This subsection provides that the power of a chief firearms officer to attach conditions is subject to the regulations.
This could clearly permit regulations having the effect of restricting the discretion, that is, the source of regulations the committee had objected to.
The problem for the committee is that a subsequent amendment to an enabling act doesn't automatically have the effect of validating a regulation that was made without authority at the time it was made. Because of that, the committee suggested to the minister that the regulation in question be remade under the new authority so as to remove any uncertainty as to its legal status.
The reply from the Department of Public Safety once again simply repeats its assertion that the regulations are lawful.
As the note explains, the committee has advanced some detailed reasons for a contrary view, and these arguments have never been countered. While the letter doesn't say so expressly, I suppose it can be presumed that the department sees no need to remake the regulations.
The question for members this morning is whether the committee is satisfied that the act now provides regulation- making authority, which in the department's characterization simply clarifies the authority it already had in the first place, or whether, given the committee's conclusion that the regulation at the time it was made was unauthorized, it wants to continue to insist on remaking this regulation to remove any doubt.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Discussion?
Mr. Zimmer: To me, it's obvious that the principle of the change in law is what it is. To have a person suggesting that there are other powers underneath that, at a lower level, that usurp the law that we made is ridiculous. I don't know how to answer that in any other way.
I will leave it there. I will let my colleague finish.
Mr. Kmiec: The previous Parliament, the Forty-first Parliament, decided on the Common Sense Firearms Licensing Act. I like that name. They added subsection 58(1.1). As I read the restrictions in the regulation, they are self- explanatory.
The intent, and the text and the will, in 58 (1.1) was to restrict those powers. Parliament has said, "You can't do this." It is given to the Minister of Public Safety, then, to say, "These are the restrictions to the firearms officers." For them to then say, "This limits my discretion," that is the point, for your discretion to be limited so that you don't act as an agent that is freelancing.
Under the regulation section 2(c), they can still keep such records. They can still do it, but they can't then start creating a registry through the back door. I think that is pretty reasonable.
I am looking at the scrutiny criteria for the committee.
9. trespasses unduly on rights and liberties;
10. makes the rights and liberties of the person unduly dependent on administrative discretion or is not consistent with the rules of natural justice;
I talked about intent before, not really caring about it, but we had a fulsome debate on it. Subsection 58(1.1) is pretty clear on what it was meant to do, and it did it. I don't really see the problem here. If the chief firearms officers don't like it, they can go do something else. It is reasonable to me.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Just leave it at that, then?
Mr. Bernhardt: There is no question that, today, that regulation could be made under subsection 58(1.1). The only question for the committee is whether it still wants to concern itself with the status of those provisions before 58(1.1) was enacted. As I say, it has always been the view of the government that those provisions were fine from the get-go.
Mr. Zimmer: What's the worst case scenario for the citizen that is wrongly brought into this quagmire?
Mr. Bernhardt: I suppose, in theory, someone may have been issued a licence before 2015 that had a condition in it.
Mr. Zimmer: I have my firearms licence, so I know where you are going.
Mr. Bernhardt: If it was a condition that the firearms officer wasn't authorized in, it's unlikely, at this point, that there's —
Mr. Zimmer: My biggest concern is this loose parameter that it is under. I know there are certain CFOs that operate directly under what the regulations say, and they know what the principle of our law is. But there are others who will take it to the farthest mile they can possibly take it. That is where we need to restrict them in what they are able to do.
That is what I am wondering, that worst case scenario. And they can do it legally; that is what I'm concerned about. What is that worst case scenario?
Mr. Bernhardt: The worst case scenario, I suppose, is that the firearms officer may have considered himself to be restricted at a time when in fact he wasn't restricted. I don't see that that would have an adverse effect on an individual licence holder because it would have been a situation where the condition wasn't put in. It could have been put in.
Mr. Zimmer: In theory, though, he could, under the law, put a condition onto somebody's licence that wasn't warranted.
Mr. Bernhardt: Not anymore. Actually, it would be the opposite.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): Not anymore. He could have before, but not now.
Mr. Bernhardt: That is the question for the committee. I suppose it comes a bit under the heading of a "loose end." The committee took the view that it was problematic before the Common Sense Firearms Licensing Act was made. There is authority going forward. It suggested remaking it to be absolutely sure it was a valid regulation. The view from the department is there is no need to do that.
Mr. Zimmer: You are saying the law would take care of that, though? If a case were to come up, the law would take care of it.
Mr. Bernhardt: I am trying to wrap my head around a scenario where an individual licence-holder would be adversely affected if it was found that before 2015 the restriction was unlawful. It would be hard to say, "I wanted this condition put in my licence, but the firearms officer said he couldn't do it." I don't think that is likely to happen.
Mr. Zimmer: If you are sitting at home and it comes to you, write it down. I'd like to know.
Mr. Bernhardt: Practically, no. There may be some aggrieved chief firearms officers out there.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Okay. We will move on.
Senator Moore: Do we close the file?
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): People seem to be happy with that, yes.
SOR/2013-169 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE CENTRAL REGISTRY OF DIVORCE PROCEEDINGS REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix J, p. 1J:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Item 12 on the agenda is also under the heading "Part Action Taken."
Ms. Borkowski-Parent: After the committee last reviewed the file, only two drafting issues remained outstanding. If you turn to Item No. 26 under "Action Taken," you will see that an amending regulation made pursuant to SOR/2015- 156 resolved the first issue, an ambiguity in subsection 7(2).
With respect to the second point, the department provided an explanation that could be deemed satisfactory. As per the note, the issue concerned —
Mr. Zimmer: Sorry, Madam Chair. I have great respect for you. Before moving on from the Firearms Information Regulations, I would like to hear that answer when he's at home having his ice cream after a long day. I would like that before we move on because I am still concerned that this is going to catch somebody that doesn't deserve to be caught in some kind of thing. Is that fair?
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Is that alright?
Mr. Bernhardt: Of course.
Mr. Zimmer: Before we just let it go. Is that fair, Madam Chair?
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Yes. Thank you very much, Mr. Zimmer.
You haven't gone too far in, so just start again.
Ms. Borkowski-Parent: With respect to the second point, then, the department provided an explanation that could be deemed satisfactory. As per the note, the issue concerned the use of the singular form of the term "spouse" in paragraph 6(b) to designate spouses on a joint application. The department argued that, owing to interpretation rules and in the context of the Divorce Act, specifically, the use of the term "spouse" in the singular form was appropriate in this instance. It would be acceptable for the committee to find this explanation satisfactory, in which case, the file could be closed.
Mr. Albrecht: Hear, hear.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): My joint chair said, "Hear, hear." You are happy?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SI/2014-109 — WITHDRAWAL FROM DISPOSAL OF CERTAIN TRACTS OF TERRITORIAL LANDS IN NUNAVUT (QAUSUITTUQ NATIONAL PARK) ORDER
(For text of documents, see Appendix K, p. 1K:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Item No. 13 is under the heading "Reply Satisfactory (?)."
Ms. Borkowski-Parent: The issue raised concerned an inconsistency in the terminology used in the schedule to the order. Given the limited duration of the order, the committee's practice thus far has been to seek assurance that the correction would be made when the order was renewed or amended. The department made a commitment to that effect, and, if it is the pleasure of the committee, the file can therefore be closed.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Okay, colleagues?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2005-151 — CANADA EDUCATION SAVINGS REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix L, p. 1L:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Next on our agenda is Item No. 14 under "Progress."
Ms. Borkowski-Parent: This file involves two issues. The first pertains to the use of subjective wording in the conditions for granting a Canada Education Savings grant or a Canada Learning Bond. The second concerns an amendment to harmonize the wording of the French version of the provision in question.
The department initially agreed to the corrections, only to indicate later that they would not be made until other regulatory amendments were required. The committee then asked the department to provide a firm time frame for the making of the amendments. The department merely indicated that it had no plans to make the amendments in fiscal years 2013-14 or 2014-15, and that they would be made once a review of the Canada Education Savings Program had been completed in the 2015-16 fiscal year.
In its most recent letter, dated June 30, 2015, the department indicated that it expected the program review to be completed in 2016, at which point, it would be able to say when it would seek to make the requested amendments.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Are we okay with that?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/93-382 — PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND CATTLE MARKETING LEVIES ORDER.
(For text of documents, see Appendix M, p. 1M:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): There are six items under "Progress (?)," beginning with No. 15
Mr. Bernhardt: Madam Chair, there have been three amendments promised. The first would clarify that the levies apply only to cattle marketed at interprovincial and international markets.
The second would remove the concept of "drover." The provincial organization has the authority to impose a levy on producers. If drovers are producers, under the order they have to pay the levy in any event. If they're not producers, the levy can't be imposed on them, so there is no need for the concept in the regulations.
The third amendment is designed to relieve abattoirs and auction houses outside the province of the obligation to collect and remit levies to the provincial organization because the organization only has authority to collect the levy from businesses inside the province.
Amendments have been promised for some years. In 2010, the Farm Products Council of Canada announced that the levies order, as well as the Prince Edward Island cattle order, under which the levies order is made, would be repealed and replaced. Now, however, the committee is told that the cattle order is to be amended, and, after that, the levies order will be repealed. The committee has not been given any indication as to when this is going to take place.
I should add that this is part of an overall review of all orders made under the Agricultural Products Marketing Act, stemming from the committee's frequent identification of problems, such as obsolete orders or orders for which amendments were never properly processed, which often resulted in the collection of levies without proper authority.
What is contemplated, without going into the technical details, is an amendment to the cattle order that will have the result that the levies order will no longer have to be registered and published in the Gazette.
While this solves the immediate problem marketing boards have in doing this registration and publication in a timely fashion, the committee had expressed concern again that this would lead to issues of access and transparency.
In 2014, the Minister of Agriculture assured the committee that steps would be taken to ensure that there were still appropriate control measures. The Farm Products Council then told the committee that different options were being studied to find a way to require that information be provided to the commodity boards within specific deadlines to the federal government, notwithstanding that there was no longer a formal publication, gazetting process. The committee accepted that.
Returning to this particular portion of this broad review, I suppose the question the committee might wish to know is when this particular order is expected to be amended.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): That's what I was thinking. You'll write to them?
Mr. Bernhardt: Yes.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Thank you.
SOR/94-753 — INDIAN OIL AND GAS REGULATIONS, 1995.
(For text of documents, see Appendix N, p. 1N:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Next is Item 16.
Mr. Bernhardt: There were 19 points raised in 2006. These generally concern discrepancies between the English and French versions on necessarily subjective requirements.
The department agreed in 2007 to address each of these 19 points. The amendments had been expected to come into force by the end of 2014, but the committee is now told the forecast time is the fall of 2016.
It seems that in this case the delay is due to the scope of the amendment package. The amendments promised to the committee have been lumped together with a broader package, and some of those other amendments require consultations that are taking some time. It falls to the committee to decide whether it is content to wait until the fall or simply monitor for now.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Should we wait until the fall? It has been going on for a long time.
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2005-379 — ASSESSABLE ACTIVITIES, EXCEPTIONS AND EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE PROJECTS REGULATIONS.
(For text of documents, see Appendix O, p. 1O:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): We will move on to No. 17.
Ms. Borkowski-Parent: There remain eight points to be addressed by amendments on this file. In its last update, dated May 25, 2015, the department explained that it was about to embark on an overall review of the regulations and that the required amendments were anticipated to be presented to the Treasury Board in the fall of 2016. If this course of action seems satisfactory to the committee, counsel could monitor progress as per our usual practice.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Colleagues, do you agree with that?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2008-80 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE LAURENTIAN PILOTAGE AUTHORITY REGULATIONS.
(For text of documents, see Appendix P, p. 1P:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Moving on to Item No. 18.
Ms. Borkowski-Parent: There remain four issues on this file — three of drafting and another dealing with an unnecessary provision in the regulations.
Amendments were originally to be made in 2010 and have been pushed back ever since, in part because the amendments requested by the committee were grouped with other amendments of a more complex nature.
At this point, the latest update from the department mentions a prepublication in Part I of the Canada Gazette for mid-2016.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Is it all right to just leave it at that, then?
Mr. Badawey: Will we actually get more correspondence on this as a follow-up so that we can see how the progress is going? I am seeing all these follow-ups, so I am expecting that instead of forgetting about it down the line, we are actually going to get a report that gives us an update. That way we can sort of push it?
Mr. Bernhardt: We're in mid-2016 now. Typically what we do in those cases is after the meeting we will write to the department and ask where things are at and bring that back.
Mr. Badawey: Will we receive that?
Mr. Bernhardt: Yes.
Mr. Badawey: Great. Thank you.
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2008-197 — STORAGE TANK SYSTEMS FOR PETROLEUM PRODUCTS AND ALLIED PETROLEUM PRODUCTS REGULATIONS.
(For text of documents, see Appendix Q, p. 1Q:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Next on our agenda is Item No. 19.
Ms. Borkowski-Parent: There remains one amendment, which pertains to a discrepancy in the French version, to be made in connection with this instrument.
While the amendment was originally grouped with other amendments made in 2012, it was then removed in order to be grouped again with other amendments to various regulations made under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999. The forecast for prepublication in Part I of the Canada Gazette was initially given as 2014. This has twice been postponed, first to early 2015 and now to 2016.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): What do you say? Wait?
Mr. Kmiec: I read this over a few times. I understand the implications of "atténuer," to mitigate, minimize. "Atténuer" means something very specific in the French language, but what does it mean right now for commercial owners who are in this line of business? Is there any situation if they go to court? I can't imagine a situation where this would be brought up in a court of law, where they say, "I'm following the English," versus, "I'm following the French version."
Mr. Bernhardt: It sometimes will arise. The two versions are equally authoritative. Obviously, they should say the same thing.
In this case, no. Is it likely to end up in court? Is there likely to be a lawsuit? Probably not.
At the same time, a discrepancy has been noted and there has been an agreement to fix it. Somewhat reasonably, that amendment has been put into a bigger package to be processed together, which seems reasonable.
As often happens, however, in these cases, because it is part of a bigger package, it tends to get put on the back burner and gets slowed down. The question for members at some point is always how much patience do members wish to exercise?
Here, we have a forecast that is in the current year. The committee could wait and see if that happens in the current year, or given that the last advice was in the spring of last year, it might be worth simply writing and asking if that is still an up-to-date forecast and if they still intend to do it this year.
Senator Moore: I would suggest that we do a letter, chair, to confirm this and ask for a timeline.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): That seems like a good idea. Why not?
Mr. Badawey: I have the same point I made last time. Do we have the authority to actually put a timeline on it, or are we just asking for a timeline?
Senator Moore: We are asking for them to tell us.
Mr. Badawey: But do we have the authority to actually put timelines to it?
Mr. Bernhardt: Not in a way that can be enforced. The committee can say —
Mr. Badawey: We have an expectation.
Mr. Bernhardt: Yes. Enough time has passed. The committee has been more than patient and would like to see this done.
Mr. Badawey: I respect that. I'm seeing a lot of these that we are going to monitor, going to follow up, going to monitor. I am sensing that down the line, as you said earlier, how much patience can we exercise? I think there is going to be a point in time where the committee considers sending correspondence stating that we expect that this timeline will be respected and that we would appreciate them following that expectation.
Mr. Bernhardt: I believe the committee will be seeing files come before it in the near future where in the last Parliament that was done, unfortunately not with the desired result.
Mr. Badawey: Or not with any authority unfortunately.
Mr. Di Iorio: On that point, it is a useful tool. Like any tool, we have to decide when we use it.
You were very kind at the first meeting to explain what would happen if we went the full spectrum of what we are able to do.
If we send a message to somebody saying that this is the timeline we expect and could they please confirm that they will adhere to it, we will see by their reaction how they intend to deal with it.
Mr. Bernhardt: At the end of the day, the committee does have the power to recommend a disallowance and table a report in the houses.
In a situation where there is a discrepancy in the provision between the two versions, that may not be the most desirable way to approach that. Again, that is always the members' decision.
Mr. Badawey: Would that not possibly start the process all over again?
Mr. Bernhardt: Yes. That has always been something the committee has considered when looking at disallowances: Is there a possibility of creating a vacuum such that the cure is worse than the disease?
Mr. Badawey: That may be a habit we want to get into; namely, if we keep seeing these fall into a black hole and be forgotten about and never get done, that we actually become a bit for aggressive with respect to expectations around timelines. They can come back and say whatever, but we still have to exercise some expectations. I think that is our responsibility.
Mr. Bernhardt: That is certainly a reasonable approach.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): In terms of the actual application, when you are doing the French and English comparison, they are not equal. Do we assume that the department will go with the more "stringent" one; in other words, they would use "minimize" rather than "mitigate"? Or do they do the French back to the English and say "mitigate"?
Mr. Bernhardt: There are entire books published on interpreting bilingual legislation, but the general principle when you have a conflict is that you try to find a common meaning, which is usually the least restrictive meaning.
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): So it would change back to "mitigate" in this situation rather than "minimize"?
Mr. Bernhardt: Off the top of my head, without going through all those books written on interpreting legislation —
The Joint Chair (Mr. Albrecht): That would be concerning in both cases: One says "below ground" and the other "below grade." I think it should be "below ground," and I think it should be "minimize" rather than "mitigate."
Mr. Bernhardt: So you try to find the meaning that can fit in both, yes.
Mr. Di Iorio: My learned colleague's comment is that it seems fairly easy to address. I agree with counsel that there are entire books written on this. I even had an opportunity to teach it at one point in my career. It is often a challenge.
What strikes me here is that we hold the pen — "we" being part of government here. That is why, as with Mr. Badawey's comments, maybe we should send some signals to get their act together; otherwise, we will have to pursue this matter. Word will get around that it's better to do the work rather than let it linger.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): We will go with Senator Moore's suggestion but also incorporate Mr. Badawey's suggestion that we give them an indication that we will not wait forever. It will be drafted in a way that they get the message.
Hon. Members: Agreed.
SOR/2013-84 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE CANADA PENSION PLAN (SOCIAL INSURANCE NUMBERS) REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix R, p. 1R:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): For Item 20, there is no indication that they will ever act on it. Could we have a brief explanation?
Mr. Badawey: Just so people know, they have agreed to address the committee's concerns. It is just a question of timing. They did say 2015. That hasn't happened, but 2015 was an unsettled year around this place.
Perhaps we can simply write to them again and say the committee would like to have clarity on the timelines.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Is it agreed?
Hon. Members: Agreed.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Before the next item, how long does this committee go?
Mr. Bernhardt: We can be out of here in less than five minutes.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): If we do the whole thing together? Good. We will do it that way.
SOR/2014-297 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE MAPLE PRODUCTS REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix S, p. 1S:1.)
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Next is Item 21 on our agenda, and it falls under the heading "Action Promised."
Mr. Bernhardt: I would note for the record that the files under "Action Promised" will be followed up in the usual fashion.
SOR/95-500 — POWER LINE CROSSING REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix T, p. 1T:1.)
SOR/96-476 — AIRPORT TRAFFIC REGULATIONS, AMENDMENT
(For text of documents, see Appendix U, p. 1U:1.)
SOR/2003-294 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY REGULATIONS (ALTERNATIVE REQUIREMENTS FOR HEADLAMPS)
SOR/2008-73 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY REGULATIONS (DOOR LOCKS AND DOOR RETENTION COMPONENTS)
SOR/2008-199 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY REGULATIONS (BUMPERS)
(For text of documents, see Appendix V, p. 1V:1.)
SOR/2007-180 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY REGULATIONS (INTRODUCTION OF TECHNICAL STANDARDS DOCUMENTS NOS. 106, 116, 118, 123, 124, 209, 302 AND 401) AND THE MOTOR VEHICLE RESTRAINT SYSTEMS AND BOOSTER CUSHIONS SAFETY REGULATIONS
(For text of documents, see Appendix W, p. 1W:1.)
Mr. Bernhardt: The first four items under "Action Taken," Nos. 22 to 25 on the agenda, are all instances where the committee had objected to open incorporations by reference. Those have all been resolved by the amendments we talked about earlier this morning, so those files can all be closed.
Senator Moore: Including the "Action Promised" file?
Mr. Bernhardt: No, we will follow up on those files separately.
SOR/2015-156 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE CENTRAL REGISTRY OF DIVORCE PROCEEDINGS REGULATIONS (MISCELLANEOUS PROGRAM)
(For text of documents, see Appendix X, p. 1X:1.)
SOR/2015-159 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE CONTRAVENTIONS REGULATIONS (MISCELLANEOUS PROGRAM)
(For text of documents, see Appendix Y, p. 1Y:1.)
SOR/2015-160 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE CANADIAN AVIATION REGULATIONS (MISCELLANEOUS PROGRAM)
(For text of documents, see Appendix Z, p. 1Z:1.)
Mr. Bernhardt: Under Item 26, I would note for the record that this makes 13 amendments the committee had asked for.
Item 27 makes six amendments the committee had asked for, and item 28 makes 46 amendments the committee had asked for. In a sense, that is the good news portion of the program.
SI/2014-1 — BLACKBERRY LIMITED INCOME TAX REMISSION ORDER
SI/2015-52 — MINISTERIAL RESPONSIBILITIES UNDER THE IMMIGRATION AND REFUGEE PROTECTION ACT ORDER
SI/2015-113 — PROCLAMATION SUMMONING PARLIAMENT TO MEET ON THE THIRD DAY OF DECEMBER, 2015
SOR/98-371 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE TRANSPORTATION OF DANGEROUS GOODS REGULATIONS (NO. 23)
SOR/99-10 — YUKON QUARTZ MINING LAND USE REGULATIONS
SOR/99-11 — YUKON PLACER MINING LAND USE REGULATIONS
SOR/2000-132 — GENERAL PILOTAGE REGULATIONS
SOR/2007-19 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE INCOME TAX REGULATIONS (NATURAL RESOURCES)
SOR/2007-288 — REGULATIONS AMENDING CERTAIN REGULATIONS MADE UNDER THE FOOD AND DRUGS ACT (PROJECT 1539)
SOR/2009-291 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY REGULATIONS (STANDARD 216 — ROOF CRUSH RESISTANCE AND STANDARD 220 — ROLLOVER PROTECTION)
SOR/2012-57 — REGULATIONS AMENDING CERTAIN REGULATIONS MADE UNDER THE BROADCASTING ACT
SOR/2013-236 — ALLOCATION METHOD ORDER (2014) SOFTWOOD LUMBER PRODUCTS
SOR/2013-253 — ORDER AMENDING THE CANADIAN BROILER HATCHING EGG MARKETING LEVIES ORDER
SOR/2014-161 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE CANADIAN AVIATION SECURITY REGULATIONS, 2012 (NON-PASSENGER SCREENING — PHASE 1)
SOR/2014-171 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE SPECIAL ECONOMIC MEASURES (RUSSIA) REGULATIONS
SOR/2014-204 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE SPECIAL ECONOMIC MEASURES (RUSSIA) REGULATIONS
SOR/2014-247 — ORDER AMENDING THE IMPORT CONTROL LIST
SOR/2014-253 — ROYAL CANADIAN MOUNTED POLICE CASUAL EMPLOYMENT REGULATIONS
SOR/2014-256 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE IMMIGRATION AND REFUGEE PROTECTION REGULATIONS
SOR/2014-264 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE CANADIAN CHICKEN MARKETING QUOTA REGULATIONS
SOR/2014-267 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE IMMIGRATION AND REFUGEE PROTECTION REGULATIONS
SOR/2014-271 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE ACCOUNTING FOR IMPORTED GOODS AND PAYMENT OF DUTIES REGULATIONS
SOR/2014-272 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE FEES IN RESPECT OF MAIL REGULATIONS
SOR/2014-277 — ORDER DESIGNATING PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND FOR THE PURPOSES OF THE CRIMINAL INTEREST RATE PROVISIONS OF THE CRIMINAL CODE
SOR/2014-280 — REGULATIONS PRESCRIBING AN OATH OF SECRECY
SOR/2014-284 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE PROOF OF ORIGIN OF IMPORTED GOODS REGULATIONS
SOR/2014-296 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE AGRICULTURE AND AGRI-FOOD ADMINISTRATIVE MONETARY PENALTIES REGULATIONS
SOR/2014-299 — CKFTA RULES OF ORIGIN REGULATIONS
SOR/2014-300 — CKFTA RULES OF ORIGIN FOR CASUAL GOODS REGULATIONS
SOR/2014-301 — CKFTA TARIFF PREFERENCE REGULATIONS
SOR/2015-45 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE METAL MINING EFFLUENT REGULATIONS
SOR/2015-54 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE ATLANTIC PILOTAGE TARIFF REGULATIONS, 1996
SOR/2015-61 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE INCOME TAX REGULATIONS (FILM AND VIDEO PRODUCTIONS, 2014)
SOR/2015-104 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE FIREARMS LICENCES REGULATIONS
SOR/2015-117 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE INCOME TAX REGULATIONS (ACCELERATED CAPITAL COST ALLOWANCE FOR FACILITIES USED TO LIQUEFY NATURAL GAS)
SOR/2015-128 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE EMPLOYMENT INSURANCE REGULATIONS
SOR/2015-151 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE EMPLOYMENT INSURANCE REGULATIONS
SOR/2015-202 — RED TAPE REDUCTION REGULATIONS
SOR/2015-249 — ORDER AUTHORIZING THE ISSUE OF A ONE DOLLAR CIRCULATION COIN SPECIFYING THE CHARACTERISTICS AND DETERMINING THE DESIGN
SOR/2016-1 — ORDER AMENDING THE INDIAN BANDS COUNCIL ELECTIONS ORDER (GEORGE GORDON, RED PHEASANT AND PABINEAU FIRST NATIONS)
SOR/2016-2 — ORDER AMENDING THE SCHEDULE TO THE FIRST NATIONS ELECTIONS ACT (GEORGE GORDON, RED PHEASANT AND PABINEAU FIRST NATIONS)
SOR/2016-3 — ORDER 2016-87-01-01 AMENDING THE DOMESTIC SUBSTANCES LIST
SOR/2016-5 — NORTH AMERICAN FOREIGN MINISTERS MEETING 2016 — PRIVILEGES AND IMMUNITIES ORDER
SOR/2016-6 — ORDER AMENDING THE SCHEDULE TO THE EXPORT AND IMPORT OF ROUGH DIAMONDS ACT
SOR/2016-8 — ORDER AMENDING THE SCHEDULE TO THE FIRST NATIONS FISCAL MANAGEMENT ACT
SOR/2016-11 — BY-LAW AMENDING THE CANADA DEPOSIT INSURANCE CORPORATION DIFFERENTIAL PREMIUMS BY-LAW
SOR/2016-12 — REGULATIONS AMENDING THE PRECURSOR CONTROL REGULATIONS (APAAN)
SOR/2016-13 — ORDER AMENDING SCHEDULE VI TO THE CONTROLLED DRUGS AND SUBSTANCES ACT (APAAN)
SOR/2016-17 — ORDER 2016-87-03-01 AMENDING THE DOMESTIC SUBSTANCES LIST
Mr. Bernhardt: Finally, just for the record, there are 49 instruments listed under "Statutory Instruments Without Comment." For the benefit of new members, those are instruments that counsel has reviewed and found to comply with all of the committee's criteria. They are simply listed; no documents are provided. However, we always bring copies to the meeting. If any member has a question or wants to see any of those, they are always available.
The Joint Chair (Senator Merchant): Thank you all.
(The committee adjourned.)