It’s been rumoured that Bill C-6 is a smoke screen for Bill 36 amendments.
The information in the article below on Bill 36 is from the Canadian Association of Energy and Pipeline Landowner Associations (CAEPLA), www.landownerassociation.ca/property-issues/alberta-land-bill.html
Bill 36 is the darkest horse of them all. It is a model for central planning. It gives the Cabinet Minister sitting in the secrecy of the cabinet room, complete authority to make any decisions affecting your existing rights.
This means property rights, development rights, mining rights, forestry rights, mineral extraction rights, wind farms, etc. Section 11 of the Act clearly indicates that the Cabinet can even “extinguish” these rights altogether.
The Act removes a landowner’s right to compensation. And several sections of the Act remove a landowner’s access to the courts as a response to what is being done to him or her.
The thinking behind the Act is that the Cabinet will make a five-year plan, and in that plan they will describe what kinds of uses and activities are allowed and not allowed on all private land and public land in the province.
The Act enables the cabinet to set “social, economic and environmental policies” for all land in Alberta—including yours.
This is unprecedented legislation in a western democracy. It is not regional planning, but central planning, with power entirely held by a small group of politicians who would deny landowners access to the courts in response to what they would do to them. In other words, no appeal process. Plus compensation was restricted. In other words, no appeal process. Plus compensation was restricted.
Bill 36 Proposed Amendments
Bill 36 has resulted in a law called the Alberta Land Stewardship Act. It is a law that gives Cabinet the power to wipe out property rights in Alberta in a number of very specific areas.
The public outcry against Bill 36 has been so intense that amendments were introduced this spring. Land titles are now exempt, but the amended Bill still gives Cabinet—not the courts, but the politicians in Cabinet—the power to arbitrarily and unilaterally rescind water licences, development rights, grazing leases, oil and gas mineral leases, timber harvest agreements—all these sorts of things.
It also restricts landowners who feel they have been unfairly treated from access to the courts.
Bill 36, have been written in such a way that the politicians in Cabinet are above the law.
Bill 36 is unprecedented for a government in a western democracy. As of the writing of this document, we are not aware that any government in any genuine democracy has moved this much power into the Cabinet room.
In essence, Bill 36, and the amendments to Bill 36, have been written in such a way that the politicians in Cabinet are above the law. The Bill means Cabinet is the law because no one will ever be able to challenge some of its decisions in a court of law.
The way the proposed amendments are written, decisions made by Cabinet about an Albertan’s private property are not reviewable by the courts, unless Cabinet specifically says they are.
In Alberta law then, when Cabinet makes a planning decision about your land—on a broad range of issues—the starting point for you as a landowner is that there will be “no courts allowed unless Cabinet specifically says, ‘Okay, in this instance we’ll let the courts review our decision.’”
It doesn’t matter how unfairly you feel the government has been toward you.