FEDERAL REG

SOR/2016-282: Indian Bands Council Elections Order (Splatsin) — Order Amending Indian Act

REGISTRATION OF FEDERAL REGULATION - VIA PART II OF THE GAZETTE

Registered
October 29, 2016


REGULATORY IMPACT ANALYSIS STATEMENT (This statement is not part of the Order.) Issues The Splatsin First Nation, in British Columbia, wishes to select its chief and councillors based on its own custom leadership selection process that it has developed and ratified by the community. To do so, the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development must, by order, amend the Indian Bands Council El... (Click for more)


Published on October 29, 2016

Bill Summary

SOR/2016-282: Indian Bands Council Elections Order (Splatsin) — Order Amending Indian Act

REGULATORY IMPACT ANALYSIS STATEMENT (This statement is not part of the Order.) Issues The Splatsin First Nation, in British Columbia, wishes to select its chief and councillors based on its own custom leadership selection process that it has developed and ratified by the community. To do so, the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development must, by order, amend the Indian Bands Council Elections Order, made pursuant to subsection 74(1) of the Indian Act, thereby terminating the application of the election provisions of the Indian Act to the First Nation. The council of the Splatsin First Nation has, by resolution, asked that the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development make such an order. Background On March 25, 1952, the Splatsin First Nation (formally named the Spallumcheen Band) was brought under the application of the election provisions of the Indian Act and has selected its chief and councillors under this election system ever since. Subsection 74(1) of the Indian Act provides authority for the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development to order that the election of chief and councillors of a First Nation be held in accordance with the Indian Act when he deems it advisable for the good governance of that First Nation. However, a First Nation holding elections under the Indian Act can seek a change to its electoral system and a conversion to the use of a community election code by requesting that the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development terminate the application of the electoral provisions of the Act to the First Nation by amending the Indian Bands Council Elections Order, made pursuant to subsection 74(1) of the Indian Act. Objective The Order Amending the Indian Bands Council Elections Order (Splatsin), made pursuant to subsection 74(1) of the Indian Act, terminates the application of the election provisions of the Indian Act to the Splatsin First Nation. It is limited to and of interest only to the Splatsin First Nation. The conversion to a local community electoral system will serve to build and strengthen the First Nation’s governance autonomy and better address the needs of the community. Description Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada’s Conversion to Community Election System Policy allows a First Nation holding elections under the Indian Act to request a change to its electoral system and convert to the use of a community election code. The termination of the application of the election provisions of the Indian Act to a First Nation is effected by means of an order of the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development when Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada is satisfied that the First Nation has developed suitable election rules that afford secret ballot voting, an independent appeals process, and that comply with the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Furthermore, the community’s election rules and the termination must have received the support of the members of the community. “One-for-One” Rule The “One-for-One” Rule does not apply to this Order, as it does not result in any administrative costs or savings to business. Small business lens The small business lens does not apply to this Order, as it does not result in any costs for small business. Consultation The Order Amending the Indian Bands Council Elections Order (Splatsin) was made at the request of the council of the Splatsin First Nation. The community election code underwent a community ratification process, wherein a majority of the votes cast by the band’s electors were in favour of the amendment being proposed to the Indian Bands Council Elections Order and were also in favour of all future elections being conducted in accordance with that code. Rationale A ratification vote was held in the Splatsin First Nation on January 5, 2016, where the First Nation’s electors could indicate by secret ballot whether they were in favour of terminating the application of the election provisions of the Indian Act to the First Nation and of adopting the proposed election code. Electors residing off-reserve were allowed to cast their ballot through a mail-in ballot process. The First Nation has a total of 644 electors. Of these, 241 electors cast a ballot at the ratification vote. A total of 154 votes were cast in favour of the transition to a community electoral system, while 78 votes were cast against and 9 ballots were rejected. On February 16, 2016, the council of the Splatsin First Nation submitted a resolution requesting that the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development issue an order terminating the application of section 74 of the Indian Act to the First Nation. As the election code of the Splatsin First Nation and the community ratification process that has taken place is compliant with Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada’s Conversion to Community Election System Policy, and because of the specific request by resolution of the First Nation’s council, the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development no longer deems it advisable for the good governance of the First Nation that its chief and councillors be selected by elections held in accordance with the Indian Act. Consequently, the Order Amending the Indian Bands Council Elections Order (Splatsin) ensures that elections of chief and councillors can be held under the community’s election code. There is no cost consequence associated with the termination of the application of the election provisions of the Indian Act to the Splatsin First Nation. Henceforth, the Splatsin First Nation will assume full responsibility for the conduct of its entire electoral process. Implementation, enforcement and service standards Compliance with its election code, the conduct of elections and disputes arising from the elections are now the responsibility of the Splatsin First Nation. Contact Marc Boivin Director Governance Policy and Implementation Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada 10 Wellington Street, 8th Floor Gatineau, Quebec K1A 0H4 Telephone: 819-994-6735 Fax: 819-953-3855 Email: [email protected] Footnote a R.S., c. I-5 Footnote b SOR/97-138 Footnote c R.S., c. I-5 Footnote d R.S., c. I-5 Footnote 1 SOR/97-138

This Bill does not amend any statutes.

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