Municipality of Kincardine Act,
1999, Bill Pr15, Mr Murdoch
Mr Bill Murdoch, MPP
Mr George Magwood
Mr Gordon Jarrell
Ms Rosaline Graham
Mr Lynn Caldwell
Ms Ellen Zavitz
Mr Jack MacGillivray
Mr John Ribey
Review of regulations report
STANDING COMMITTEE ON
REGULATIONS AND PRIVATE BILLS
Ms Frances Lankin (Beaches-East York ND)
Vice-Chair / Vice-Président
Mr Garfield Dunlop (Simcoe North / -Nord PC)
Mr Gilles Bisson (Timmins-James Bay / -Timmins-Baie James
Mrs Claudette Boyer (Ottawa-Vanier L)
Mr Brian Coburn (Carleton-Gloucester PC)
Mr Garfield Dunlop (Simcoe North / -Nord PC)
Mr Raminder Gill (Bramalea-Gore-Malton-Springdale PC)
Ms Frances Lankin (Beaches-East York ND)
Mr Pat Hoy (Chatham-Kent Essex L)
Mr David Young (Willowdale PC)
Substitutions / Membres remplaçants
Mr Brad Clark (Stoney Creek PC)
Mr Dominic Agostino (Hamilton East / -Est L)
Clerk / Greffière
Ms Anne Stokes
Staff / Personnel
Mr Andrew McNaught, research officer, Research and Information
The committee met at 1008 in committee room 1.
MUNICIPALITY OF KINCARDINE ACT, 1999
Consideration of Bill Pr15, An
Act to change the name of The Corporation of the Township of
Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton to The Corporation of the Municipality
The Chair (Ms Frances
Lankin): We'll call the meeting to order. Good morning.
Those of you who have travelled to join us, I appreciate your
waiting. Sorry for the delay. We'll begin now.
The first item of business on
our agenda is Bill Pr15, an act respecting the municipality of
Kincardine, and Mr Murdoch is presenting that. Would Mr Murdoch
and the applicants come forward to the table, please?
Mr Bill Murdoch
(Bruce-Grey): My name is Bill Murdoch and I introduced
this private bill about a week ago or so. It has to do with the
municipality of Kincardine. Under restructuring in Bruce county,
they restructured down to eight municipalities. This municipality
didn't have its official name, so they had a vote and had this
name picked out. Because it wasn't done originally when they
restructured, it has to have a private bill.
I'm the neighbouring MPP for
that part of Bruce county. Part of my riding is in Bruce county,
but not this part. Helen Johns is the member there. She's a
minister, so she can't introduce private bills, so it was left up
to me. I was approached by the municipality to do this and I did
it. It's been introduced and that's why you have people here
today. That was my job.
Could I ask the applicants and representatives who are here if
you could each introduce yourselves, first of all.
Magwood: Thank you, Madam Chair, honourable committee
members. My name is George Magwood. I'm a solicitor in private
practice in what is now known as the municipality of Brockton,
formerly the town of Walkerton, which is in Bruce county.
I'm also solicitor for the
applicant municipality which is the subject of this bill. I have
assisted them throughout the process in terms of providing legal
advice; also with respect to the process involving this bill,
drafting it in this first instance, dealing with legislative
counsel and preparing the compendium. If permitted, I will be
making some remarks.
With me today are Gordon
Jarrell, mayor of the municipality, and Rosaline Graham, the
clerk of the municipality.
Thank you very much, and welcome to all of you. Do you have some
introductory remarks you would like to make?
Thank you very much, Madam Chair. First of all, I've never been
in front of this committee so I'm in your hands with respect to
It reminds me of quite a few
years ago when Mr Murdoch was a member of Grey county council and
the chairman of the land division committee. I was appearing in
front of the committee and giving my client the best shot with
respect to an application for severance-
Sorry, this is Mr Murdoch? An application for a severance?
The Chair: I
can only guess what the results would have been.
In about 15 minutes he put his hand up and said, "Mr Magwood,
we're probably inclined to grant your application, but if you
keep talking we might change our minds." I hope you'll give me
the same courtesy.
Just by way of background,
first of all the bill itself is probably, I guess I can say, a
model of brevity and clarity. Obviously, it has one operational
section, which is to change the name of the municipality as it
legally is to that requested.
The reason for the change-I
guess we can go back, if you wish, briefly in history. Bruce
county was created probably well over 100 years ago literally out
of the wilderness by what was then the province of Upper Canada,
Originally, it was connected
with Huron county. It was given separate status, and the
townships were created by the crown surveyors. Two of those
townships were the township of Kincardine and the township of
Bruce, neighbouring municipalities along the shores of Lake
Huron, Bruce to the north and Kincardine to the south; very proud
municipalities and the names, as you can see, closely associated
with the Scottish settlers at the time.
As settlement patterns
basically were created and were opened up and the area was
settled, local municipalities were created from the townships,
two of those being the town of Kincardine, at the mouth of what
is known as the Penetangore River on Lake Huron, and the village
of Tiverton, which was
created out of part of Bruce township, a little bit to the
The structure of the county
of Bruce was pretty static. The Bruce Peninsula was added
subsequent to its creation by way of the surrender of lands from
the native people at that time. Local municipalities were created
throughout the county, reaching approximately 34 municipalities
participating in county council for probably the best part of 100
Prior to the amalgamations Mr
Murdoch has made reference to, there were some, I guess we can
say, consensual amalgamations of some of the smaller villages,
and basically at the time of the major county restructuring there
were 30 municipalities that were subsequently reduced to
The village of Tiverton and
the township of Bruce had actually amalgamated one year prior, on
January 1, 1998. Hence, Tiverton no longer exists but became part
of the township of Bruce and continued under the name of the
township of Bruce. That is why the name "Tiverton" is referred to
in the overall bill, because it was part of the previous
municipality. That happened, I guess we can say, consensually.
Those municipalities presented their own restructuring request to
the Minister of Municipal Affairs. It was granted. A second
municipal restructuring, which was county-wide restructuring, was
effective on January 1 of this year, 1999.
The restructuring order which
created the eight municipalities also designated the names. There
was no discussion at that level, obviously. The minister's name
for this municipality is the one that you see in the bill, The
Corporation of the Township of Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton. There
was a very summary method in the restructuring order to change
that, and the other municipalities within the county of Bruce
availed themselves of that. They had the time to do it. It just
involved some public participation, a resolution of the
transition team created by the restructuring legislation and a
request to the minister, and he amended his order. But the
legislation was structured such that it had to be the transition
team passing the resolution and making the request. They
automatically became functus, or by law disappeared, at midnight
December 31, 1998. Thereafter, of course, they didn't exist; they
couldn't do anything.
In this case, because of some
opposition to the actual restructuring legislation and court
challenges, which I've referred to in the compendium, which
actually ended up at the level of the Ontario Court of Appeal in
about October 1998, the transition team just didn't have the
opportunity or the ability to deal with the name. It wasn't the
smoothest of transitions, I guess we can say, because of the
legal transition. So they were the only municipality in Bruce
county that couldn't avail themselves of that summary procedure.
That, therefore, is the reason we're here today. There was no
other way to do it, other than if they wished to actually change
their status to a town, there was an ability to apply to the
Ontario Municipal Board. But that was not the wish, so that's why
we're here and the bill is before you.
The other thing I'd like to
add is that the Bruce county restructuring, depending on the eye
of the beholder and who you're talking to, was not an imposed
restructuring, but I think a lot of people might think it was. It
was in fact a restructuring brought about by the amendment to the
legislation, the Municipal Act, which allowed local
municipalities to basically do their own thing, come up with
their own plan and present it. This was done by Bruce county
council, which of course, as I said, was the representative of
all 30 municipalities at the time, following the formula of the
triple majority, as it's called, and based on a committee report
and adoption by Bruce county council, all the local
municipalities and the reeves, and submitted on that basis to the
Minister of Municipal Affairs as a local option type of
restructuring. That's how Bruce county became the way it is
The word "democracy" of
course means all things to all people, but it was done
democratically by elected representatives based on the
legislation that this House, your assembly, created and the
mechanics that you created to allow that to happen by local
Having said that, that's how
the name got its official status. It wasn't something that was
chosen locally; it was something that was put in the bill. Like
all municipalities, they were combined names. I have put in the
compendium for your information, just so you can see what the
other municipalities did. Some of them created combined names,
and some of them created brand new names. They've all been
approved by the minister under the current existing rules, which
allowed the transition team to do that. That left, as I said
before, Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton. Because of their late start,
if you want to call it that, they didn't have that
Those are my remarks with
respect to some of the background and the legal application of
why we're here and why it's necessary and how the name was
Mr Jarrell, the mayor, of
course was involved first of all as the reeve of the township of
Kincardine, as a member of the transition team and as the first
mayor of the new municipality. He has gone through the whole
process at every level. He would like to address the committee,
if permitted, to talk about the selection of the name and how it
came to be, the name that is referred to in the bill.
Jarrell: Madam Chair, honourable members, I would like
to add a few words on this, because it has been a most
interesting and sort of chaotic process.
Back in the transition, we
were late getting off the ground. As Mr Magwood has alluded to,
we were under court challenge, and so it was into October before
we had our meetings. We recognized that the name was one of the
most important things we had to get established, so instead of
the transition board naming, we elected to use a citizen
committee to perform this task for us. Instead of worrying about
representation by population, we have the three wards-the town of
Kincardine, the township of Kincardine and the township of
Bruce-so each of those municipalities appointed two members to the
citizen committee, for a six-member committee.
They started working, I would
say, about November. In January they brought in a list of names
to the council, and unbeknownst to the council they had elected
to eliminate virtually all the original names and come up with
Our suggestion to them, which
we had basically stolen from the municipality to the north of us,
Saugeen Shores, was to get a marketing name, something that would
be good for economic development, something we could use as a
The committee came in with
what we thought may be almost retirement names: Bluewater Shores,
Gaelic Winds-and I should make a comment on this one. The papers
had tremendous fun with "Gaelic Winds," if you can imagine a
piper with flatulent air, and this was published all over the
local papers. There were Piper Shores, Sunset Beach, Sunset
Shores. They did put the name Kincardine, and Kin O'Bruce. We, as
a council, were not happy with this selection. We didn't feel it
did for us what we were after, so we requested of the committee
if they would kindly reconsider, take it back, do a little
further study and not force the elimination of any names, that
they give all due consideration.
We ended up, as a result of
that, with a few resignations. But again, the member replacements
were taken on the same basis: the ones from ward 1 replaced their
single member; ward 2 had to replace both members; and ward 3 had
to replace, I believe, one member. But we had the committee back
again and the same chairperson.
Later they came in with a
list of names, and this would have been about the end of June or
July. They were Kinbruce, Kinbruton, Kincardine,
Kincardine-Bruce, Penetangore and Scotslanding.
There was some discussion at
council: "I wonder why they didn't bring in
"Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton?" I suppose I can take part of the
blame for this. It was a long, unwieldy name and I had to
abbreviate it to KBT, which rolled off the tongue fairly well.
The committee had considered it, because we did ask them to, and
they thought no, they didn't really want to recommend it, so they
didn't. There was some query from council, "Could we add it?"
Yes, as council we could, but the majority of council decided no,
we should not tamper with the democratic process of the committee
from the three municipalities that had made the recommendations.
So those names I just read were the names that were put on the
It's interesting that we're
being told we didn't really advertise it properly. I'm sure the
clerk will address this. We advertised in the three local papers,
the two in Kincardine and the one in Port Elgin, which reach the
majority of the area. We had some concern about the area
immediately to the northeast of our municipality. Paisley, which
is the closest community, doesn't have a weekly paper, so we
couldn't advertise there.
I was rather surprised,
because I expected at the fall fairs to see some move to
incorporate and urge voters to go in a specific direction,
whatever that direction might be. There was none.
Council were not out beating
the drums for anyone. When I spoke at different functions and
several banquets-as you know, mayors get nominated for these
jobs-I always, prior to that election, raised the question:
"Don't forget October 4. Get out and vote. Remember the names.
Pick the one you want and represent it." So I think the
democratic process was followed. The voting pattern was down
somewhat, but if we look, ward 3, which was Bruce township, voted
about 19.5%; in the last municipal election, the year before, the
one I was elected in, they came in at about 38.5%. Kincardine
township on this name vote voted 20%, which is very close, and
36.5% in the one before.
So there seemed to be a
parallel. There didn't seem to be any great discrepancy in the
percentage turnout of voters at the election. So I was most
surprised to hear of the objections being raised to it as not
being a democratic process and being confounded in one way or
another. As a council we certainly had no intention to do that,
and we don't think we did.
Madam Chair, as Mr Jarrell has indicated, council elected to put
the names recommended by the committee to the electorate. It was
done by way of a special question, pursuant to the provincial
Elections Act. The election was held on October 4 and of course
the results certified, and they're in the compendium. The process
of administering that election, as required by law, fell to the
clerk of the municipality, Rosaline Graham, and she would like to
address the committee with respect to that process involving the
timing, the advertising, the counting and of course the
Graham: Madam Chair and honourable members, in
accordance with 65(3) of the Better Local Government Act, Bill
86, amending the Municipal Elections Act, a by-election is to be
conducted as far as possible in the same way as a regular
election. For the election, the clerk can give notice. Any notice
or other information that is required is given by the clerk in a
form and a manner that the clerk considers adequate to give
reasonable notice or to convey the information, as the case may
As the mayor and Mr Magwood
have alluded to, we did give notice, and you can see that we made
a big effort to make sure we had large notices. In fact, the
newspapers were really happy with us for doing this. We gave
three consecutive weeks' notice. We were required to conduct the
by-election within a 60-day time frame.
The extra effort we made was
to ensure that our summer residents would be able to vote, and a
lot of those live in the township of Bruce. So we held an advance
vote on September 25. At the actual vote, we used electronic
voting equipment. For the vote itself, in the township of Bruce,
"Kinbruce" received 130 votes, "Kinbruton" received 31 votes,
"Kincardine" received 14 votes, "Kincardine-Bruce" received 153
votes, "Penetangore" received 12 votes, and "Scotslanding"
received 39 votes. So each name was considered.
I believe the municipality did make reasonable
effort to advise the people and to give them an opportunity to
decide on the name. I believe the process was thorough and that
we have demonstrated this at this time.
Ms Graham, I'm sorry. Would you just read the results again? I'm
having trouble following.
This was in Bruce township only, OK? I just want to-
Oh, I'm sorry.
This is the whole election. This is the total vote. No, in Bruce
Thank you. I just got confused that it appears to be different
from the compendium.
Ms Graham: I
just wanted to let you know that they did vote for every name in
Bruce township too.
That's what was confusing me. Do you want to read into the record
the overall results? I think that would be helpful for the
The overall votes: "The municipality of Kinbruce" received 367
votes; that was 13% of the vote. "The municipality of Kinbruton"
received 62 votes; that was 2% of the vote. "The municipality of
Kincardine" received 1,607 votes; that was 59% of the total vote.
"The municipality of Kincardine-Bruce" received 521 votes; that
was 19% of the vote. "The municipality of Penetangore" received
117 votes; that was 4% of the vote. "The municipality of
Scotslanding" received 96 votes, which was 3%. There was a total
number of votes of 2,770 votes altogether.
I'd also add that we made
other efforts by contacting the local radio station. I know the
mayor was interviewed and actually even CBC were in the area at
the time and did a blurb on it. I think we made a good
May I just welcome Minister Johns, who is also the local MPP for
the area involved, who has joined us today. Welcome.
Mr Magwood was there anything
I think that's basically our presentation.
In summary, the only thing I
would really like to emphasize to the committee is that I
believe, and I think it's evident from both the submissions of Mr
Jarrell and Ms Graham, that every effort was made to really
involve the community in the selection of this name both by the
transmission team and, if you want to call it, the contest they
had before the local committees that were reporting and that came
back to the council.
When you think about it,
first, I guess this name could have been selected by the
transition team on a resolution made behind closed doors and that
would have been it, to a certain extent. That didn't happen. It
could've actually been made by the new council. They could have,
as they did, of course, brought the bill forward just on their
own resolution. That didn't happen. We actually had a real
election: one person, one vote, under the laws of our province as
to how these elections are to be held. I don't think you could
get any more participatory involvement in a process than
And not only that; the
results were respected. Referendums, if you want to use that
word, are not binding. I suppose council would have had somewhat
a lack of credibility if they chose not to follow the winning
name, but obviously they did.
So it comes to you not only
as the name selected by every person living in the municipality
who had the right to vote and did vote; it also comes to you by
the local elected representatives of that municipality on their
motion to you for this legislation to be approved. I would hope
you would have no concerns with the fact that the public
consultation was not to the highest degree.
With that, subject,
obviously, to the response you have from the other people here
and questions to us, I believe that completes our submission. I
request that you give the bill satisfactory consideration and
recommend it for third reading. Thank you very much.
Thank you, and there may well be questions from the committee
members after we hear from other interested parties.
I understand that there are
other interested parties who would like to make presentations
with respect to this. Could I ask that the applicants vacate the
table just for a period of time and other interested parties come
Welcome. May we begin by
going along the table and asking each of you to identify
yourself, your names and the communities you come from.
Caldwell: I'm Lynn Caldwell. I live in Bruce township,
the northern part of our amalgamated municipality.
Zavitz: My name is Ellen Zavitz. I live in Bruce
MacGillivray: Jack MacGillivray. I come from Bruce
Ribey: John Ribey, from Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton. Jack
and I are co-chairing here. We represent a sizeable group of
people from Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton who are opposed to this
name change. As many of you may be aware, we-
I'm sorry. Could I interrupt you for a moment? I realize there's
only one mike there. Sorry, we're not set up appropriately. You
can share it as you go along this morning.
Can you hear me?
Yes, thank you.
Mr Ribey: We
represent a group of concerned residents from
Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton and we are obviously opposed to the
changing of the name to the municipality of Kincardine. Some of
you, I presume, are aware that we have lately done a petition in
the municipality and have submitted that petition to this
committee. We had over 1,100 names on it. That's a significant
amount, we think, and we were very pleased with the response we
got as we circulated the petition.
Some of you, as I say, may
have read this petition. I'm going to ask Lynn to read that to
This was addressed to the committee members:
"We the concerned ratepayers of Kincardine, Bruce,
Tiverton hereby present the following petition of over 1,100
signatures supporting the following:
"Bruce-Tiverton has been our
home and a vital community for almost 150 years. As part of that
community we the ratepayers of Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton believe
that the proposed name change to `The Corporation of the
Municipality of Kincardine' ignores and excludes a significant
part of our identity and our heritage and therefore oppose the
name change. We feel the name should reflect the attributes of
all three communities, and therefore endorse the name KBT
(Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton)" which we've operated under for
approximately a year.
Going to some of the
significant impacts that Bruce township has to offer as part of
this municipality, we have some significant industries that
contribute greatly to all three of the municipalities, those
being the Bruce Municipal Telephone System, the Bruce Energy
Park, Bruce Tropical Produce Inc and Bruce Pasture Farm. We have
the Bruce nuclear power plant, from which a lot of people from
our area have received a substantial amount of their income over
the past number of years.
industries, plus RKM, which employs a significant amount of
people-it's the second largest employer in Bruce county-are the
driving force behind the amalgamation in this municipality.
Going back to BMTS, on March
11, 1911, our forefathers of present-day residents of Bruce
township pledged their farms as security should the venture fail,
and in turn formed the highly successful Bruce Municipal
Telephone System, which we have today, and it's probably one of
the largest privately owned telephone systems in the
We have contributed to three
community centres, a sports complex, a library, a medical centre,
and a fire and rescue department to serve the new municipality.
We have two parks, Inverhuron and Brucedale, which are both in
Although Bruce township and
Tiverton population is not as large as Kincardine, they are a
very loyal and community-minded group of people, situated on a
land base approximately half of the amalgamated municipality. The
distribution of eligible voters throughout the three wards left
ward 3, Bruce township, at a huge disadvantage.
Anyone who has read the Bruce
township Tales and Trails, published in 1983, illustrating
pioneer life and the hardships they endured, would certainly
agree that it would show little or no respect or honour to those
who have gone before us to remove "Bruce" from our identity.
Thank you, Mr Caldwell. Could I just indicate to you all that the
committee members have copies of the letters that have been
submitted by yourself and by other interested parties from the
area, and the committee has a copy of the cover letter of the
petition, not the full petition, just so everyone understands
that the clerk's office has received the full petition with all
the names you have referred to.
Madam Chair and honourable members, this committee of concerned
ratepayers proposes that we retain the name we've been using
since the amalgamation took place: Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton, or
KBT. Our reasons are many. First of all, we feel that the name
KBT represents all three communities, whereas if the name
Kincardine is adopted, two of our most important areas are
Bruce township boasts Bruce
Nuclear Power Development, Bruce Municipal Telephone System, RKM
Wood Products, the Bruce Energy Centre, two parks and a thriving
cottage industry. Tiverton boasts a new arena, community centre
and a wonderful fall fair, as well as small town flavour.
Kincardine does well with tourism but is really a bedroom
The name KBT includes the
three areas: "K" for Kincardine and Kincardine township, "B" for
Bruce township, and "T" for Tiverton. Could it be any more simple
than to leave things the way they are? The name Kincardine alone
does not reflect the common attributes of all three
We feel the town of
Kincardine is thinking only of itself. Every other amalgamated
community in our area has either chosen a brand new name-for
example, Saugeen Shores-or a combination of names, for example,
Brockton. Why should the people who have lived here for
generations be left out and not be recognized at all? We feel
that should not have to happen.
The council of KBT have
taken it upon themselves to go full-steam ahead with their new
name and have already changed letterhead, bag tags and dog tags,
but it is our understanding that the name has not been passed in
the Legislature, so how can this be legal?
Council, in our estimation,
did not follow its own guidelines when deciding to let the name
Kincardine stand on the ballot. How could the outcome of a vote
be any different when the population is so one-sided? A fair
vote? We think not.
We are asking for your
consideration when making a decision that could so badly reflect
on our residents. The confusion that could result could be
overwhelming. Our concessions would have to be changed, not to
mention street names and 911 numbers etc.
Caldwell: There is one other thing I was going to point
out. I brought a little map along with me for those of you who
may not be familiar with the area.
It's approximately 30 miles
from the town of Kincardine to the outermost, farthest area that
would be part of our amalgamation. For that reason it would seem
very unfair, when you have Kincardine down in this area and Bruce
up here, not to have all three representing a common thing, which
I think would-I heard the comment made about marketing. I think
people who would come into our area would readily be able to
identify where they're going and it would still promote tourism, which is a major part
of our summer industry and growth for the income we get in the
MacGillivray: Madam Chair and honourable members, I
would just like to add a few comments to what already has been
Most of our members here
today are from generations of people who have lived in the area
all their lives. It's very important to them to retain our name.
Bruce county and Bruce township are names that have been here for
a long time. I think we've been very fair when we included
Kincardine first, Bruce and then Tiverton.
For myself, my son is the
fifth generation in the township, and this holds true for many of
the other people here today. We feel there's something wrong when
we see trucks in Kincardine now with the name "Kincardine" on
them, when we are still KBT. This has not been settled, but I
would like an explanation from somebody why we have "Kincardine"
on dog tags and on garbage bags. To me, there's something
I don't think I have
anything further to say. I endorse everything that has been said.
If I can answer any questions, I'd be willing to try my best.
I've been here for a long time and I hope the rest of us will be
here for years to come.
Thank you very much. Before I go to committee members for
questions, I'd like to ask the parliamentary assistant if the
government has any comments.
Mr Brian Coburn
(Carleton-Gloucester): As you've heard, the
restructuring order took effect January 1, 1999. Unfortunately,
the name wasn't able to be decided at that time. We have no
objections. We see no objections to the proposal from any of the
ministries. Our ministry has no objection to the proposal. We
have received four letters from members of the community
objecting to the proposal.
I'm going to go to questions at this point in time. There are
four interested parties and there are three representatives of
the applicants, so we may have to juggle chairs back and forth to
allow you an opportunity to answer questions.
Mr David Young
(Willowdale): I appreciate the opportunity of posing a
few questions. I want to start by thanking all the deponents who
came down today, before Christmas, to express their views. It's a
lot easier for us around this table to understand the nuances of
these issues when you're here to express them as you have done.
I'm sure the other committee members all appreciate your
attendance here today.
A couple of questions, and
I'm not sure if they're best answered in totality by the people
currently at the mike.
The first one is this: In
ward 3, which is the Bruce-Tiverton area, do we have some idea of
the population that would be of voting age?
Could I just ask that Mr Jarrell and Mr Magwood perhaps join us
up here at the table, if we could make room.
Ms Graham, perhaps you
might have that information. We're looking for eligible
electorate number from the ward 3 area.
Am I right that ward 3 is the Bruce-Tiverton area?
Jarrell: Yes. I can give you the precise numbers on that
for the eligible voters. There are 2,439.
Of that number, how many cast ballots in this referendum-type
Jarrell: It was 467 who cast ballots.
Thank you very much.
The other questions I have,
and I don't have too many more, are for the other delegation that
has come down. I have had the opportunity, over the last few
minutes only, to review this petition in its entirety. I
appreciate your providing this to us. My questions are a
reflection of the fact that I'm from Willowdale and not from the
much prettier part of the province where you folks reside. Tell
me, if you would, where Paisley is and Port Elgin and places like
that? Those are in ward 3, first of all?
Caldwell: No. May I just show you this map? It might
clarify it a little bit. Port Elgin is up here; which is Saugeen
Shores now. Paisley is approximately there. This is the area all
along Saugeen Shores. The nuclear power plant is in there and the
energy centre is there. Tiverton is approximately in the middle.
Kincardine is in this area.
Thank you very much; that's very helpful. The map answers some of
my other questions, and maybe I can just put this on the record.
It seems as though-and you folks will correct me if I'm
wrong-Port Elgin is outside of the municipality we're here
discussing today. Do we agree on that?
All right. Similarly, Southampton is outside, and that's another
area that we see reflected or identified as the residences of
some of the people who have signed this petition. I think you'll
find, if you go through it, that there are some. Then finally,
Paisley, as I indicated earlier-
Caldwell: Can I speak to that? I believe you'll find
that some of those are landowners within
Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton and live outside of the
Could be. I'm just telling you that as I review these pages, many
of them have signatures from people who have identified
themselves as having a residence in Paisley, Southampton and Port
Elgin. So that helps me to understand that these people do not
necessarily reside in the subject municipality. Is that right or
Caldwell: May I clarify that? Paisley post office serves
over a third of Bruce township and Port Elgin post office serves
another portion. That is another reason you may get some
addresses of Port Elgin and Paisley.
Ah, to be from Willowdale and not understand rural life.
Mr Young: We have similar
problems, but they involve Downsview and Don Mills. If you use
that analogy, I'd be all right.
Mr Caldwell, perhaps I could be of some assistance here, I think
the intent of the question is for us to understand whether the
entirety of the signatories to your petition are from people who
reside within the affected area, within this new
Caldwell: Half of Bruce township is served by
Paisley/Port Elgin post office, which might clarify that.
I suspect you're here saying it's your understanding that most of
these people reside in the subject municipality; there may be a
few who don't. Is that what you're here to say? OK.
Madam Chair, is this an
opportunity for comments as well on our part?
No. At this point, could we just proceed with questions to the
applicants, the interested parties or the parliamentary
assistant,? We'll have an opportunity to debate after that.
I'll withhold my comments. Thank you very much.
Mr Dominic Agostino
(Hamilton East): A couple of questions with regard to
the breakdown of the population. You've given the numbers for
ward 3. There are three wards. What is the population breakdown
of the other two?
Magwood: In our compendium on the very last page,
actually, if it's been distributed, is the information the member
is requesting. There's a chart.
Agostino: Just a rough number so I can get a sense of
the percentage of the population.
Jarrell: I can give that to you very easily. The total
is 10,875: Ward 1, which is the town of Kincardine, is 5,405;
ward 2, which is the township of Kincardine, is 3,031.
Agostino: Thank you. A question on the notification
process for the-the clerk suggested that this was run under the
Municipal Act that applied to this. In a general municipal
election, would there be a notification that would go to each
individual eligible voter in the area?
You're talking about voter identification lists?
In a general municipal election, yes. This municipal election was
a by-election. It was done in a very short period of time. We did
consider sending out voter identification notices. I think the
access, as far as possible, should be done as a regular election.
We had to deal with our software people. The notices would have
been very late going out, had we sent them out. It wasn't a
requirement. We spoke with Municipal Affairs about it. This was
not a requirement, so we actually published larger, bigger
advertisements. We published them for three consecutive weeks in
the three papers that served the area. In a normal election, we'd
probably publish them for one week.
Agostino: So it would be fair to say that not everyone
in the area would have had-I understand that you did the notice
and that you did three of them, but it was not the same process
that would be used where every individual resident or citizen
would receive a notice advising them to vote and so on, as
normally would happen in a municipal election campaign.
It was a by-election we were conducting, and that's what we
Agostino: OK, that was just to clarify that.
In regard to the name
change, a question was raised by the residents here about the
process for the name change, and I was just curious. There were
suggestions that the name on the trucks, for example, or other
services and things provided by the township and the municipality
already had been changed. Can I ask the rationale for that and if
that decision pre-empted this decision to be made by the
Jarrell: Rosaline may come on after and maybe can
correct me if I'm wrong. All legal documents are still being
processed under "the township of Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton."
K-B-T was never a legal name. What we have done in a
few-particularly where we've acquired new trucks, rather than
repainting the doors, yes, we have put "The Municipality of
With respect to dog tags and stuff of that nature for the year
2000, obviously we have to order them beforehand; you'd be amazed
at how many people come in and want next year's dog tags. So we
did order them with "The Municipality of Kincardine."
Agostino: Just a final question, through the Chair:
Would it be appropriate to ask the position of the local member
That's a good question. I'm not sure if it would be appropriate
to impose upon Ms Johns at this point in time. If you would like
to comment, you're certainly welcome to. Ms Johns, you may want
to wait until we have debate on the bill, or if you would like to
offer your opinion now, feel free.
Hon Helen Johns
(Minister of Citizenship, Culture and Recreation, minister
responsible for seniors and women): I think I'll wait
until we have the comment, but let me just preface this by the
fact that a lot of this was going on through the election. As you
know, I'm fortunate enough to be representing this part of the
riding for the first time after June 1999, so a lot of the work
that was done before this to come up with the name I'm not a
party to because I wasn't their representative before that. Some
of those questions would be best put to Barb Fisher, who was the
representative, as opposed to Bill and I, who are now fortunate
enough to represent Bruce since that time. I think the committee
will have to decide today, with the information they're given, to
get the best results.
Mr Brad Clark
(Stoney Creek): I wanted to start off by thanking you
for coming down. I know how difficult it is. I've been in those
chairs before as a constituent and as an advocate. Sometimes this
place can be a little bit overwhelming.
Mr Agostino: The good old
The good old days, as Dominic says.
I do have a number of
questions, if I may. In Kincardine, if you can help me out,
please, in terms of the numbers-the people voted in Kincardine on
the name change. How many people in Kincardine, percentagewise,
voted for "Kincardine"?
Jarrell: I'll give you a partial answer. It's not the
complete answer you're after; our clerk is going to try to look
it up. It's 1,676 people out of the 5,405 voted, or 31.01%. I'm
not sure how many voted for "Kincardine." That was your specific
question, I believe.
In ward 1, the vote for "Kinbruce" was 93, the vote for
"Kinbruton" was 20, the vote for "Kincardine" was 1,071, the vote
for "Kincardine-Bruce" was 191, the vote for "Penetangore" was
62, and the vote for "Scotslanding" was 33.
That was just the one ward or all of them?
The total ballots cast for Kincardine were 1,676.
That's in Kincardine proper, total?
OK. I have some questions with reference to the actual committee
that set up-process, I guess, in terms of the name change. Were
there terms of reference that were provided to the citizens who
volunteered to sit on the committee originally to look at
Jarrell: Yes, a fairly simple one. One of the main
tools-they were asked to come up with an attractive name and a
name that would be useful in marketing. Those were the two, with
no limitations. We felt that by having two members from each ward
elected by that specific ward, we were not loading the deck. We
felt we were being fair.
Was there at any time in the terms of reference any mention made
of the fact that they should not consider current names for the
Jarrell: The first group that was appointed, unbeknownst
to us, did develop that among themselves. The first list they
brought in had been under that guideline that they themselves had
subjected themselves to, and they complied with it with the
exception that they did bring in the name Kincardine.
Caldwell: I have the terms of reference here with the
criteria. Also part of that, which Mr Jarrell has not mentioned
to you, was that the name should reflect the common attributes
and flavour of the three present communities.
Thank you. So they had set for themselves the parameter that they
should not consider current municipalities, but at some point
"Kincardine" was added to their list. Can you explain why?
Jarrell: No. Without being a member of that committee, I
couldn't explain why that happened, but when those names came
back in to us and we requested them to take them back and rework
them, we did ask them specifically not to exclude any name
because of its relationship to an existing municipality.
Was the name Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton excluded from
Jarrell: The committee that was set up, representative
of the three wards, did not bring it back in. We specifically
asked them if they had considered it and they said yes, they
I have a letter here from a Stephen Caldwell. I'm assuming the
mayor has seen this. The second paragraph reads: "No
advertisement came directly to landowners and residents of this
municipality. Upon talking to the mayor, he admitted that the
area in which I live-the former Bruce township, northeast
corner-was not adequately covered by newspapers and media in
which this vote was taken. Not all get the same newspapers;
therefore we should have had something in our mailbox-leaflet
etc." Would you care to comment on that?
Jarrell: Yes. It's the area that Mr Caldwell referred
to, the one up closer to Paisley. It is the farthest distance
from Kincardine, if you were to take a diagonal line across. The
comment is not particularly true where I acknowledged that it
wasn't served by newspapers. The newspapers do say they service
that area, but that doesn't mean that the residents there have to
subscribe. I know that Mr Caldwell and at least one other member
from up in that area said no, they don't take any papers.
Could you have done anything differently to ensure that all the
electors in the area, in the region itself, would have been given
personal notice of the vote?
Jarrell: One vehicle that I used personally when I was
campaigning for office was to use Canada Post and the flyers. The
flyers aren't precise and I know certain areas that did not
receive them, but it would give a broader coverage.
The name selection committee, in attempting to garner names to
determine what the name of the municipality would be, actually
did send out a mail-out questionnaire to every home in the
municipality during this whole process, and there was a buzz
about the name throughout the municipality.
The other thing I just
would like to point out is that I do have a list, and I got this
recently from our local newspapers, of stores selling papers
within the whole municipality. I notice that the Cottage Grocery
Store in Inverhuron, McMann's Garage in Underwood and G & M
Variety in Paisley, all hold newspapers there. These, I'm
assuming, are stores that would be frequented by people perhaps
in north Bruce, I would think.
If the numbers are correct here, it was 1,607 for "Kincardine" in
total? The total number of votes for "Kincardine" in the entire
In ward 1, the number voting for "Kincardine" on October 4 was
Do you have a total for all the residents in the entire area who
voted for "Kincardine"?
Jarrell: In the total municipality, 1,607 voted for
Mr Clark: That's the number I had.
Do you have any comment with respect to the fact that you have a
petition here with 1,100 names opposed to the name "Kincardine"
and the total number of votes for "Kincardine" was 1,600? It
seems pretty close.
Jarrell: A comment?
Jarrell: I wish the same enthusiasm had been applied
prior to October 4 as is being applied now.
One final question for the residents over here: If this had been
put to a ballot in a normal municipal election as an added
question, would you have been satisfied with the outcome if
"Kincardine" had been chosen?
Thank you very much.
Mr Gill, do you have questions?
Mr Raminder Gill
(Bramalea-Gore-Malton-Springdale): Mr Mayor, this might
have been mentioned earlier, but could you please give me the
name of ward 1 again?
Jarrell: The name of the original municipality? Ward 1
was the town of Kincardine.
And ward 2?
Jarrell: Ward 2 was the township of Kincardine and ward
3 was the township of Bruce.
As I understand it, the ward 1 and ward 2 eligible voters are
8,436, from your numbers.
And in ward 3, which is Bruce-Tiverton, the eligible voters are
2,439. Am I correct?
I'm going to make a comment, that as long as on the ballot item
the name "Kincardine" itself appeared, it seems to me that the
overwhelming majority lived in wards 1 and 2 in which Kincardine
was the primary name. I don't know how much advertisement would
have changed anything. I do hear the concerns from everybody that
if you had done the mailing, door-to-door and using Canada Post,
but as long as the question was there as Kincardine-
Mr Gill, could I ask you at this point to keep to questions?
We'll enter into debate and comments, but you might have other
I'm OK. My questions have been answered. Thank you.
Thank you very much. If I could just point out to the committee
members again, some of these answers, if you need to refer to
them during the course of debate, are contained in the compendium
of information that all committee members received prior to this
meeting. I see you shaking your head.
Mr Gill: I
did not receive it.
In fact, all committee members received the package for today,
which has the compendium. I just checked with the clerk on
Madam Chair, can I ask one quick question? To the delegation
sitting at the end of the table here, I want to be very clear
about your position today as we enter our deliberations: Is it
your position that the residents of ward 3 and the residents of
the municipality in general did not have notice of the plebiscite
or referendum or question? I want to know what you say about
Caldwell: I'll make a comment to that. I was combining
in the field. I didn't know a thing about it till 5 o'clock. I
was 20 miles away from home; no way I could possibly get to it. I
heard it on the radio. I don't think it was adequate notice,
personally for myself or my son, to even know.
You don't subscribe to or read the local papers they've mentioned
where it was advertised?
Caldwell: We don't get a local paper. The local paper we
get is published every other week in Paisley. It could have quite
conceivably been put in there and we would have gotten
How did you ultimately get notice of it?
Caldwell: I heard it on the radio at 5 o'clock that
Did you vote?
Caldwell: No, I couldn't. I didn't have time.
The other members: Can I ask the same question?
I didn't vote, and that's the first time I've never voted, at any
time. I heard about it at the beginning, but I forgot about the
date and completely forgot about the day.
MacGillivray: I did not vote because we were in Europe
at the time. We were in Europe in September and October and we
were not at home to vote.
Yes, I voted. We happen to take the Kincardine paper and I saw it
there, but we're a long way from Kincardine. People don't shop
there; they don't mingle in Kincardine; they go the other way.
They had no way of knowing, unless they were talking with some
The gentleman mentioned the fact that he was in Europe. Were
proxies or advance ballots allowed?
There were advance ballots also?
There was an advance vote too. I could read you the numbers for
the advance vote.
Are there any further questions from committee members?
I thank the applicants and
the interested parties who've attended and ask you perhaps to
resume your seats in the audience.
We will at this point in
time move to comments and debate on the bill by committee
members. At an appropriate time, when it appears the committee is
prepared or ready, we can move to an actual vote on sections of
The committee members will
know they have the option, obviously, of carrying the bill as
proposed, of amendments, of deferring a decision on the bill and
referring back to the municipality for further action. There is a range of options the
committee has and that will, I think, be appropriate to be
discussed at a point in time when we finish comments and
I had interrupted Mr Gill
when he was making some comments. I don't know if he would like
to resume now.
Continuing where I left off, I still feel that there is always a
better way of informing people. Perhaps the residents might feel
that they could have been informed more properly. At the same
time, from the question, it seems to me-this is hypothetical-it
may not have made a difference. As long as the Kincardine name
was there and as long as 75% of the people come from that area,
the outcome may have been the same. That is the kind of comment I
wanted to make, as I said before.
For me, I have serious concerns about this situation on a very
personal level. I'm just now going through amalgamation in my own
community, and all the members in the room know my concerns
The identity of a community
itself is something that's very personal for most members in that
community, especially when they've lived there for many
generations. Over the years I demonstrated in many aspects, in
terms of my concerns about direct democracy and the need for it
from time to time, that when we venture down that path on any
mechanism of direct democracy, it's an absolute imperative that
we operate with complete due diligence to make sure everyone has
an opportunity to speak to that matter. It does concern me to
read a number of letters where people state that they did not
have notice. If that is the case, the question comes to me, how
many people really didn't know? How many people in those
communities really did not know that this vote was happening and,
as a result of that lack of knowledge, were disenfranchised of an
opportunity to vote to that issue? That I'm having difficulty
overcoming, I'll be very frank.
I'm not sure. I'm stilling
mulling over in my mind what resolution we might have to this
situation, but I have to tell you that it does concern me. It
does concern me that you're talking a very low turnout in a vote;
you're talking 1,607 people voting for the name of Kincardine and
we have a petition for 1,100 names now opposing it.
There does seem to be a
problem. I have some very serious reservations about it and I'd
be interested to hear from my other colleagues.
Agostino: I share the concerns of my colleague from
Stoney Creek. There was a vote taken; I understand that. I guess
I have concerns with the notification process that was used. If
we're going to use the numbers to legitimize the process, I think
we've got to ensure that the system is foolproof from the point
of view of a notification process. The numbers may have been
different; they may not have been different. However, the
integrity of our democratic system-if we're going to use this,
the rationale is that the numbers overwhelmingly point to one
particular choice. Then I think we have to ensure that the system
used to achieve that is within the keeping of our democratic
system. Generally we never would run a provincial, municipal or
federal campaign without a proper notification process, and we
use those results, obviously, to determine how we govern
ourselves locally, provincially or federally. So I have a problem
I have a difficulty in the
sense that the choice-maybe somebody can clarify if I'm wrong,
but I understand that the name currently used,
Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton, was not on the ballot. Is that
correct? That was not one of the options given to people? That
may have made a difference, in the sense that that may have been
a good compromise position for all parties involved and may have
been the majority number that would have come out of that.
Because the numbers are so slanted in terms of population base,
almost 75% or 80% in one particular area, it also would be a
foregone conclusion from the point of view of protecting the
minority in those townships that are clearly in the minority
situation. I think we have somewhat of a responsibility to do
Chair, I would have a
difficult time. I cannot, in good conscience, support the
resolution that is here.
I have a suggestion-and it
is a suggestion; I'm not sure how we could work around that-that
we look at keeping the current name as it is until the next
municipal election and then asking the township to consider a
referendum question on the municipal ballot, putting "Kincardine"
as one option and "Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton" as another option
on that same ballot in a properly run municipal election. There
would be a ballot question on that, there would be proper
notification, and people would then have the full choice, which
appears to be "Kincardine" or "Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton."
That, in my view, would
make it much more democratic. That, in my view, could reflect
much more, because it does give people the option of keeping the
name that appears to combine the areas together. At that point, I
think we would have to respect the democratic outcome at that
decision. But it would at least level the playing field by an
opportunity giving people the full ranges.
I certainly can't support
what's in front of us today with this bill. I would like to see
it go back with a properly processed way of voting and giving the
people the options they have, of keeping the current name or
moving to Kincardine as the name.
Mrs Claudette Boyer
(Ottawa-Vanier): For the same reason as Mr Clark and Mr
Agostino have suggested, I have reservations on voting today on
First of all, I was shocked
when I read the letters from the opposition saying that the
committee had added this name, which was not the first name. I
have quite a lot of reservations about that. Along the way, we
say that the township, the mayor there and council wanted to have
a democratic process instead of giving a name and saying, "This
is the name," but the way it's going, I find that there's a lot
of contradiction. I still wonder if it was very democratic.
As far as communication was concerned, when there's
a will there's a way. They should have ensured that everyone
concerned had a written notice of the election.
I will not repeat what my
two colleagues said. At this stage I don't think that I could
vote in favour of this bill.
Madam Chair, before I speak, can I get clarification from you and
perhaps legislative counsel and the clerk as to what we are being
asked today? It's my understanding, as you had indicated earlier,
I believe, Madam Chair, that we are being asked to either
essentially approve this legislation and send it on to the next
stage or reject it. Are those our options, or are there other
options beyond that?
I'll ask the clerk to elaborate or correct me if there's more to
add. The question before us today-there's been a bill properly
put before the Legislature, which has been found to be in order,
which is for our consideration. The question that will be put to
the committee is, shall the bill carry?
The committee has options.
If the committee determines that the bill shall not carry at this
point in time, the bill can be defeated. Or the committee has an
option to defer consideration of the bill today to request
further action to be taken. Perhaps the clerk could just add to
Clerk of the
Committee (Ms Anne Stokes): Those would be the options
available, and it's fully within the power of the committee to do
what you will with the bill.
I appreciate that. I don't want to complicate what is already in
many respects a particularly complicated situation. It is a
difficult decision, and I understand both sides.
I understand the affinity
and the connection that individuals, groups, parts of our
province or our country have with names and it's not to be
disrespected, but I do wish to point out that names continue well
beyond legal amalgamations and alterations that occur from places
like Queen's Park.
One example of it is-and it
was very interesting reading the petition, because for me it
meant one of two things as I went through it and asked some
questions earlier. To me it meant either that there were a whole
lot of signatures on this petition from people who had no
connection with the subject municipality-and I'm told that's not
likely the case, although we don't know for sure-so it was either
that these are people from Port Elgin and Paisley and so on and
so forth who have no connection, or alternatively, they are
people who are in the subject municipality, which may well be the
case, who continue to utilize names of smaller towns, townships
and jurisdictions even though they don't necessarily find their
respective names reflected in any of the proposals we've heard.
We've heard no proposals, at least I haven't taken down any
notes, that would suggest that names like Paisley would be
included in there, and there is no Paisley adjacent or up or
down. These have been amalgamated into other areas, yet they
continue to use their names.
I also heard with
interest-and it was very interesting, because I quite like
hearing about the historical underpinning of things-about how the
name Bruce in particular has continued to be used for generations
and generations and how successful some organizations and
corporations that utilize that name have been over the years.
There is no evidence and no
information in front of us to suggest that continued use of the
names Bruce or Tiverton would not be maintained by these
organizations-Bruce nuclear plant and so on and so forth, the
telephone exchange that was mentioned. I have some considerable
level of optimism that these names, that are very important to
some of the deponents who have come here today, will continue to
be used, just as names in neighbouring towns that have been
amalgamated into other municipalities continue to be used.
There's no suggestion in front of us that there's going to be
some revamping of these names or postal stations or anything
along those lines.
It would be difficult, in
my respectful opinion, for us to vote against this legislation,
for two reasons. The first is that from what I've heard I believe
there has been a bona fide attempt by the town's duly elected
municipal officials to have a fair process. I'm not going to sit
here and say they could not have done better. As a Monday morning
quarterback I probably could dissect the process-I think my
friends have done so; I have perhaps as well-and consider ways we
might have been able to improve upon this process. We should aim
for perfection, but simply because the process wasn't perfect
doesn't mean the results of the process should be discarded.
It seems to me there was a
bona fide attempt to go out and obtain the opinion of the
residents through a referendum, for want of a better term. There
was a reasonable attempt made to go out and advertise and inform
individuals of this referendum, not perfectly, but the reality is
that they did try. I think that information was there to be had
and there was an opportunity for people to exercise their
franchise and express their opinion in that manner.
In closing, let me say
this. I am not overly swayed, although I certainly am impressed,
by the number of names on the petition, for this reason. First of
all, I'm not sure if all these people reside in the subject
municipality, but I'm prepared to assume that most of them do.
Second, if you compare the numbers, 1,600 and change who voted in
favour of the name we're being asked to approve today as compared
to about 1,100 on the petition, it seems to me that what we have
here is a reiteration by the 1,100. Most of the 1,100 presumably
went to the polls and voted against the name that's in front of
us today: the municipality of Kincardine. In fact I guess there
was closer to about 1,400 or more who actually cast a ballot
contrary to the proposed name. But it seems to me that simply the
fact that this has been reiterated by way of a petition shouldn't
alter our decision-making process, and it's time to get it on
with it, it would seem to me.
This particular municipality for numerous reasons
has gone through a rather tumultuous period as part of this
amalgamation. It's time to get on with it. I do not personally
believe it's going to have any significant or adverse effect upon
the lifestyle of the community if we approve of the legislation
that's in front of us, and I, for one, will support the
I'd like to point out a few observations as I was listening to
the comments made. Correct me if I'm wrong, anybody, but the
request was made of Mr Murdoch to bring a private bill forward by
the lawyer representing the council. That's correct? OK.
There are a couple of
things here that are important. The council determined a process
by which they could resolve this issue and they exceeded the
requirements under the Municipal Act. It's a process that's very
well known to us here in the democratic system to try and resolve
situations, and they went beyond that.
The thing that puzzles me a
little bit is that we went through a restructuring in this
community. Certainly everybody, who would have been sitting on
the edge of their chairs, I would think, as they were going
through this restructuring, would know there would be a name
change, given the background I've seen. They know there are going
to be some other changes. To come up and say after the fact, "I
wasn't aware something was going to happen," I think is that
after the horse is out, we're going to try and close the barn
door. This was something that happened in the community and had
been ongoing for some time. I guess the onus has to go back on
ratepayers to a certain degree, that you have a responsibility in
your community to be aware of what is going on.
The council I think did its
utmost in trying to inform residents that a decision was going to
be taking place, in addition to the fact that, because of the
legalities precluding the final date of restructuring, that
didn't permit them to incorporate the name change at that
The other issue here is
that this was not a binding election. The municipality had the
ability to stop the process or to move ahead and request a
private member's bill. That was the only avenue to make change.
So I think the decision rested with the community. We have to
have some regard for those who took the effort to come out and
vote on the day designated.
When you get into name
changes and restructuring, it tugs at the heartstrings and it
pulls you in all different directions, but as my colleague Mr
Young said, when the rubber hits the road, you've got to make a
decision. All the processes were followed, and therefore I
support the process and this bill.
Any further discussion or debate? Seeing none, are the committee
members ready to vote on this matter? OK.
Just for the information of
those attending today, only members of the committee are eligible
to vote. There are a couple of members of the Legislature in
attendance here today who are not members of the committee, so
they won't be voting. Also, the Chair, myself, I don't vote
unless it's a tied vote, so don't let that happen, folks.
We have before us Bill
Pr15, An Act to change the name of The Corporation of the
Township of Kincardine-Bruce-Tiverton to The Corporation of the
Municipality of Kincardine. We can move directly to voting. There
have been no amendments put at this point in time-
Can I ask for a five-minute recess, Madam Chair?
We're not into the vote yet. You almost missed your opportunity.
It is 25 minutes to 12. A five-minute recess. We will reconvene
at 20 to.
The committee recessed
from 1132 to 1139.
I call the meeting back to order. May I ask committee members
again, at this point are you ready to vote on this matter?
There have been no amendments put or any indication that
amendments are being put, so I'll begin with sections 1 through 4
of the bill, which is the entire bill, just for explanation to
folks out there.
Shall sections 1 through 4
carry? Please put your hands up if you agree. Would all those in
favour please indicate. Those opposed, please indicate. Sections
1 through 4 carry.
Shall the preamble carry?
All those in favour, please indicate. Those opposed? Carried.
Shall the title carry?
Those in favour? Those opposed? Carried.
Shall the bill carry? Those
in favour? Those opposed? Carried.
Shall I report the bill to
the House? Those in favour? Opposed? Carried.
Thank you very much. Bill
Pr15 has passed through committee. It will be reported out this
afternoon to the House. It will remain with the House. The House
will deal with it in its own time and fashion.
Just for interested parties
to know, this is close to coming to the end of this legislative
sitting. I don't know whether that will be today or tomorrow
and/or whether there will be any resumption of the House after
Christmas. There has been no adjournment motion yet, so that's up
in the air.
I can't actually give you
notice at this point of when the matter will be dealt with, but
you certainly can rest assured that we will report it back to the
House and it will rest in the hands of the Legislative Assembly
as of this afternoon.
Magwood: Is there a process of notifying us of
Clerk of the
Committee: I will advise you when royal assent has been
I appreciate all of your attendance here today and I thank you
for taking the time.
REVIEW OF REGULATIONS REPORT
The Chair (Ms
Lankin): Committee members, we have another item to deal
with. The next item on the agenda is resumption of consideration of
regulations report. If I may, the clerk has provided me with a
brief summary of the role of the committee with respect to these
matters, and particularly now that we're down to having asked
legislative counsel to review these matters with ministries,
we're down to two outstanding issues that are being brought back
to us. It may be helpful if I share with you this summary. This
is a new process to me and I found this helpful:
"The role of the committee
with respect to regulations is stated in the standing orders. The
committee is not to review the merits of the policy or objectives
to be effected by the regulations or enabling statutes of any
regulation. The committee is to examine the regulations with
particular reference to the scope and method of the exercise of
delegated legislative power within a framework of nine
"The lawyers in the
legislative research branch are tasked with the responsibility of
doing the actual review and analysis of each and every regulation
enacted and to produce a draft report for the committee's
"You have a copy of the
draft report in front of you and are now being asked to consider
it and make a report to the House.
"You will note that the
legislative research officer has undertaken to contact the
ministry in the case of any question regarding a regulation and
that ministry has the opportunity to reply in each case. After
examining the responses, the report comments upon 13 regulations
and indicates that there are two outstanding issues that have not
"This is your opportunity"
as a committee now "to ask any questions of the research officer
and to discuss the issues raised in the report. The report is in
draft form and may be changed" by the committee in any way that
we instruct. "What you are then going to be asked to do is to
make a motion to adopt the report and report it to the House. You
may present the report for the information of the House or ask
the House to adopt it.
"Pursuant to standing order
32(d), the committee may also request that the government table a
comprehensive response to the committee's report within 120
calendar days of the presentation of the report to the
If I just may add to that
for committee information, in most cases, if we've come to a
conclusion ourselves among the committee, the report will just be
presented to the House. If we vote to present and move adoption,
it's because we believe there's some reason there should be
debate in the Legislature.
Pursuant to standing order
32, a request to the government for comprehensive response is
most likely to arise in the circumstance where the information
provided to us by legislative counsel leads us to believe that
the ministry has not satisfied the concerns that this committee
should be concerned with with respect to the regulation. The
committee may feel it is not prepared to simply reject the
regulation or report that back to the House for debate, and we
want to provide the ministry and minister with an opportunity to
give a full response. A range of options are available to the
members of the committee.
I think what would be most
helpful is if we ask legislative counsel to briefly outline the
regulations in question. We'll do them one by one.
Do we have the report?
You have the report in front of you. This is the draft report. It
covers the comments on all the regulations.
Today is the resumption of
the discussion with respect to this. The full information was
presented to the committee at the last meeting. There are two
outstanding issues, although, if the committee would like a
presentation on the full report, I'm going to suggest as a matter
of expediency that we simply ask for an update on the information
with respect to the two outstanding issues, because I think
that's the bulk of what we have to deal with here today.
If I could ask committee
members, I think you will find the two outstanding issues on
pages 7 and 9 of your committee report. We will deal with them
individually as matters. Could I ask legislative counsel to
please provide us some information on the first matter, the
regulation under the Ministry of the Attorney General?
McNaught: First of all, I should point out that I'm not
from legislative counsel. I'm from the Research and Information
Services branch of the library. It's a common mistake. However,
I'd be happy to have a salary review.
Anyway, as the Chair has
mentioned, there are the two outstanding sections, and they deal
with the Ministry of the Attorney General and the Ministry of
Finance. I'll go over the two areas again.
The section on the Attorney
General begins on page 6. That section deals with two regulations
made under the Administration of Justice Act. These regulations
set the fees payable by those who file a claim in Small Claims
Court. For this purpose, the regulations distinguish between
frequent claimants and infrequent claimants.
A frequent claimant is
defined as someone who files a claim in a Small Claims Court
office and has already filed at least 10 claims with the court in
that calendar year. An infrequent claimant is simply someone who
has filed fewer than 10 claims in that year. You will see from
the table at the bottom of page 6 that the fees prescribed by the
regulations are significantly higher for frequent claimants. We
raised the concern with the ministry that the higher fees appear
to penalize frequent claimants.
For example, we've
indicated that for filing a claim, the fee is $50 for an
infrequent claimant, whereas it's $120 for a frequent claimant,
which is 140% higher. For fixing a trial date, an infrequent
claimant pays $100 and a frequent claimant pays $130, which is a
30% higher fee. The fee for entering a default judgment is $35
for an infrequent claimant and $50 for a frequent claimant, which
is 43% higher.
We raised the concern with
the ministry that the higher fees appear to penalize frequent
claimants and that this
would constitute a violation of committee guideline number 6,
which prohibits the imposition of a penalty by regulation. The
ministry responded that infrequent users are usually individuals
or small businesses, whereas frequent users are generally larger
institutions. So on the basis that it would be fairer to ask
large institutions to assume a greater share of the funding of
the Small Claims Court program, the ministry decided to set
higher fees for frequent users.
However, our view was that
the committee's guidelines are concerned with the effect of a
regulation rather than with the underlying policy, and since the
effect of the higher fees for frequent users is to impose a
penalty on such users of the Small Claims Court, the regulation
violates the committee's guideline against the imposition of a
penalty by regulation.
Do you want to deal with
that issue now?
Yes, I think we will.
As a point of order, I guess for want of a better way to
interject, can I get a copy of what you read to us earlier about
what our responsibilities are here? It's kind of clear as mud to
We're just going to get the photocopies-
Because it will reflect what we ask and what we don't ask and
ultimately how we vote.
While we're waiting for that, let's take a run through this again
and also ask the clerk to elaborate. In this example, whether or
not you think it is a great policy in this case, as the ministry
is suggesting, to have large corporations pay the lion's share of
the cost of administration of this process of Small Claims Court
and cross-subsidize, therefore, individuals and small
business-whether or not you agree with that is not a matter for
consideration by the members of this committee.
The question you are being
asked to decide on is whether or not, as has been suggested by
legislative library and research-have I got that right yet? The
lawyer from the branch who advises our committee suggested that
it violates the guideline in this case because it imposes a
penalty through regulation, which the guidelines suggest should
be done through legislative provisions, not through regulations
under the legislation. Do we wish to do something about that? Do
we agree that it is a violation of the guideline and do we wish
to do something about that?
The options we have
available-rather than me trying to run through them again, I'm
going to ask the clerk just to set it out clearly in terms of
what the committee can do in this circumstance.
Clerk of the
Committee: Just to recap, there are nine guidelines-it's
in the standing orders-in terms of the mandate of the committee.
As the Chair has said, it's not to review the policy or the
merits of a regulation. The nine guidelines are things like: the
regulations should be in strict accord with the statute
conferring of power; regulations should be expressed through
precise and unambiguous language; they should not impose a fine,
imprisonment or other penalty; regulations should not impose
anything in the way of a tax. Those are the only guidelines this
committee is empowered to review regulations by.
The people in the research
branch are tasked with doing the actual review and analysis. Any
regulation that is regulated is reviewed by them, and if there
are any questions in terms of these guidelines, they contact the
ministry and ask for a response. A report is then generated from
those responses, and that's what we have now in front of us.
And the options of the committee?
Clerk of the
Committee: If the committee is satisfied with the
responses from the ministries, then the committee would adopt the
report and it's presented to the House. We could ask the House to
adopt the report, which means it would then go on the order paper
and it could be called for a debate at some future date. The
committee could also actually place recommendations in the
report, recommendations to the ministry to do whatever the
committee feels the ministry should do. In that case, we would
ask the House to adopt the report.
OK. That's great. Thank you.
The committee also has the option of asking the ministry to
provide a comprehensive response, which, if I could ask the
clerk, might lead to what?
Clerk of the
Committee: The government House leader would respond on
behalf of the government, of the ministries, for a comprehensive
response. If the response has already been received from the
ministry and that is in the report, we could ask for further
response and they would presumably elaborate on the response that
was given previously.
If I just may ask the clerk, in that situation, the committee may
defer actually dealing with the report or the recommendation at
this point in time? It might ask for that response and give
consideration to this when a response is received?
Clerk of the
Committee: The response would only be requested when the
report is tabled in the House.
We would adopt and then ask for a response as part of its
Clerk of the
Committee: We could, yes.
Then this committee wouldn't see the report again?
Clerk of the
Committee: The report then would be tabled. The response
would come back and would be circulated to the committee.
Would it be possible to ask for that response to be returned to
Clerk of the
Is there some concern about doing that, timelines or
Clerk of the
Committee: The standing orders state that the response
should be received within 120 days.
Of our request to them?
Clerk of the
Committee: Yes. Of being tabled, I should say.
Madam Chair, I'm sorry to dominate this.
No, this is fine. It's helpful to all of us.
Mr Young: If it was our decision
today to ask for a response from the respective ministries to be
returned to this committee, it's implicit that it has to be done
within 120 days. Then we could have a discussion with the
respective ministries here as well, at that return date? Am I on
track or have I lost it somewhere?
Clerk of the
Committee: The report would have been tabled at that
Clerk of the
Committee: The report is tabled in the House, yes. But
the committee could still leave those as outstanding issues and
then we could present-with a response, then there could be
another report that would be presented.
If I could at this point-I hope it's helpful in clarification-our
committee, in the end, is not being asked to pass or to approve
the actual regulations. We're preparing a report based on the
review. It's the report that we're looking to approve. So the
report as it is drafted on these two issues, the one that we were
talking about in particular, contains the concerns set out and
contains our opinion that it is in violation of the
That matter can be
presented to the House. It can be presented to the House for
adoption, which will allow some debate with respect to that. It
can be presented to the House with recommendations to the
ministry. It can be presented to the House with a request for a
comprehensive response. And from what you've said, Mr Young, one
other option at this point is that it could be presented with a
request for a comprehensive response but without these matters
included, and we could deal with them later. This is the range of
Thank you. That's very helpful.
I think the one important thing for us to remember is that within
the standing orders there are the nine guidelines, only the nine
guidelines, and it is rare that we end up in a situation where
one of them is being presented to us as being clearly in
violation of those guidelines. It's a technical process that
we're undergoing here and one that obviously we all take
seriously in terms of this review.
If it's tabled to the House, the response would be coming to the
House then, correct, or back to the committee?
Clerk of the
Committee: If we're requesting the response, it would
come to the committee.
It would come to the committee, but the report's already been
tabled in the House.
Clerk of the
Committee: The report is tabled with a request that a
comprehensive response be made to the committee.
To the research officer, when did this differential start? How
long does it go back? Has it been long-lasting or did it just
McNaught: This looks like it was 1997.
And prior to that everybody paid the same fee?
It doesn't say that.
McNaught: I don't know what existed before.
OK. I know that's not what we're discussing.
McNaught: I can certainly find that out.
I'm sorry, I can't follow the side discussions. Can we keep
things on the record here?
Mr Gill: I
think we were all discussing things. We took the opportunity
while you were discussing to discuss something among
I'm sorry. I thought you were-
No. The question was basically, how long ago did this
differential start? Not that we're discussing that, but I was
just curious about how long ago that differential started.
If I might, it's an interesting question but it is really
irrelevant to the decision we have to make. If you want that
answer, we can ask the legislative branch to get it, but I don't
want us to confuse the discussion here.
Again, I'm just asking questions just to understand clearly the
role of the committee. If we are of the opinion that a regulation
is in violation of one of the guidelines in the standing orders
that governs the review conducted by our committee, it is our job
to report it, or report it with a request for action, or report
it with a request for information and response.
There isn't an opportunity
for us to fix the problem that we may see here at this committee.
That rests for others. By and large, it could be done voluntarily
by a ministry if a recommendation has been made by the committee;
they may or may not take it into consideration and act on it. In
the response, if you've asked the ministry to respond and it has
to come through government ministers at that point in time and
the House leader, the government may decide to take some
action-the political government, I'm saying-in response to seeing
the concern of the committee.
An individual member who
might read the committee reports might decide through their
caucus process to pursue it in the Legislature in all the variety
of ways that are there, like motions or whatever.
But it's not up to this
committee to actually fix a problem if we see it. It's up to us
to take appropriate action with respect to reporting and/or
reporting with more information.
I'm getting the distinct impression that really there are two
options for us here. We can take the entire report and table it
to the House, asking for additional information, or report on the
two outstanding items, or table the report without those two
items and ask for information. What would the difference be to
Clerk of the
Committee: The report is in draft form right now and any
changes can be made to it. The report would go forward to the
table. Say we've made no changes to it; the report would go
forward as it is. The options are that the report would be tabled
and you could ask for a comprehensive response from the ministry
and they would respond to the report as a whole. There are other
comments that are made, but basically these are the two outstanding ones, that there
has been some disagreement or difference of interpretation
between the research branch and the ministry. The letter would
come through the government House leader to the committee. So it
would be that the whole report is tabled and the whole report is
commented on or responded to.
Then we could as a committee take these two items out of the
draft report, table the report that we don't have difficulties
with and ask for further comments from the ministries in question
regarding the two outstanding items?
Clerk of the
Committee: There has been correspondence already between
the research branch and the ministries, and the result is
We're at loggerheads.
Clerk of the
Committee: We're at loggerheads, basically. The
difference is that you're bringing it to the attention of the
House and it's up to the House to decide what to do.
In essence, we're at an impasse on these two items as a committee
and they should go to the House to be dealt with.
Again, there is a range of options there. You can simply present
it to the House. You can present it and ask for adoption, which
means that you are specifically putting it in the realm of
suggesting that it go into debate in the House. That is a large
step for the committee to make, just to be fair in understanding
the process. The other option that's available to the committee
is to amend the report in such a way that we as a committee make
a request of the ministry to make amendments to the regulation to
bring it into compliance with the guideline that we think they're
violating. They don't have to do that, but then it's there in the
record and we present that to the House. Again, our job would be
done and it remains with members of the Legislative Assembly to
take any further action they deem fit or not at that point in
time. Am I correct?
McNaught: I just wanted to point out that I think this
goes to something Mr Young was raising earlier, that the
committee could, if it wanted, call ministry officials to come
before the committee to explain their position. I think that
could be done at any point; it doesn't have to be done after the
report is tabled.
I'm going to try and move us along here. Let me get a sense from
committee members. On this particular regulation, do you share
the concern that has been put forward in the draft report at this
point in time? Can I just get nods whether there's general
I don't know if it lends itself to a nod, Madam Chair. I do, on a
preliminary basis, have some concerns. I understand the concerns.
I also have some understanding of the response that's contained
in the paragraph from the ministry, and I would like, if
possible, to have a representative from the ministry here to
hopefully better explain and answer our questions about whether
or not this isn't, in their view, a penalty. Obviously, they'll
say otherwise, in view of their earlier comments.
I don't know if it's
appropriate to move or not, but I would like to send the report
on to the next stage, with the exception of the two controversial
aspects of it, which I would like to have returned to this
committee within the 120-day period, together with
representations from the respective ministries. Is that
That would be entirely in order and doable.
That's just my opinion. I'll put that on the floor if that
The intent of that motion would be to forward this report. We
would, by your motion, be amending the report to delete these two
regulations but within our report include a request to the
ministry for a comprehensive response on each of these
regulations and a request to the ministry to send representatives
to our committee, after we've received the comprehensive
response, to answer questions we may have.
If I may-and again, I'm attempting to help here-
For the record, it would be helpful if we just had the item in
dispute, the second regulation, put on the record by legislative
McNaught: That sections begins at the bottom of page 7
of the draft report. This section deals with two regulations
again. These are made under the Fuel Tax Act and the Gasoline Tax
Act. They provide for the implementation of the international
fuel tax agreement. These regulations were filed on January 24,
1997, but were deemed to come into force on January 1, 1997, so
in other words, to have retroactive effect.
Committee guideline 4
provides that regulations should not have retroactive effect
unless clearly authorized by statute. In some provisions of the
Gasoline Tax Act and the Fuel Tax Act there is authority to make
regulations that have retroactive effect. However, we were unable
to find this authority in the particular sections under which the
two regulations in question were made.
The ministry's explanation
appears to be that because there is authority in other sections
of these statutes to make retroactive regulations, this should be
interpreted as sufficient authority for any regulation made under
these two acts to be retroactive.
Again, we set out the legal
principles applicable to analyzing this kind of legislation. You
will see that at the bottom of page 8 and on to page 9. But based
on these principles, it's our view that in order for a regulation
to have retroactive effect, there must be specific authority in
the section under which that regulation was made. As we could not
find that authority, we identified them as potential violations
of the committee's guideline on retroactivity.
We have a motion before us by Mr Young. That motion would see the
draft report in front of us amended by deleting the
recommendation on the two outstanding issues in dispute and
substituting a request on those two items for a comprehensive response
from the respective ministries and that, upon receipt of those
responses, the ministries be invited to attend at this committee
to answer questions from committee members. The matters then
could be dealt with and a report following that to the
legislative counsel. Correct, Mr Young?
Is there any debate or discussion of that motion? None? May I ask
all those in favour? That's unanimous.
Is there any other matter
to be brought to the committee?