December 3rd , 2012
This week the Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development met to discuss Bill C-47, and Supplementary Estimates (B) 2012-2013. Bill C-47 is an act to enhance the Nunavut Planning and Project Assessment Act, and the Northwest Territories Surface Rights Board Act, and to make related and consequential amendments to other Acts. The Committee met late on Monday due to a vote in the house, and unfortunately the meeting was cut short and some of the witnesses could not be questioned due to the vote. The Committee did hear from the Minister, the Department of Justice, and the Department of Indian and Northern Affairs. There was a focus on the exact breakdowns of the new supplementary estimates, and exactly where the money would be going. An emphasis was also placed on improving access to clean water on reserves, and the improvement of waste water systems. The witnesses from the Department of Justice and from the Department of Indian Affairs only gave an opening statement; the members were not able to question them due to time constraints.
The minutes from the meeting can be found here.
Wednesday December 5th, 2012
The Committee met this Wednesday December 5th, to discuss Bill C-47 in further detail. The meeting started an hour late due to another vote in the house. The meeting was only an hour rather than the regular two. The Minister was not able to make it to the meeting, however two representatives from the Nunavut government appeared to give opening statements concerning Bill C-47 (available here.)
The representatives from the Nunavut government emphasized the importance of Bill C-47 to the people of Nunavut, and emphasized the length of time it has taken to get this Bill completed and the need to have this piece of legislation passed. During the meeting there was a distinct effort by the committee members to note that consultation with the community was extensive during this process of creating this legislation. The Nunavut Land Claims Act was mentioned multiple times during the meetings, information concerning this act can be found here.
Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. was also mentioned multiple times, and it was mentioned that they may provide some information at some point, information concerning this organization can be found here.