November 09, 2009

NS Legislative Report - Wrap Up November 9

Related Services

Following the change of government this past June, the 61st General Assembly of the Nova Scotia legislature began on Friday, September 17 with a speech from the throne. As of November 5, 33 government bills, 30 private member's bills, and two local bills have been introduced during this sitting of the House of Assembly.

Below is a summary of the bills introduced between October 30-November 5 along with a status update on those bills introduced since the beginning of the 61st General Assembly as of November 9.

The Fall Sitting of the 1st Session of the 61st General Assembly of the Nova Scotia legislature adjourned on November 5.

Government Bills

Bill No. 59 – Security and Investigative Services Act
The Security and Investigative Services Act seeks to create a regulatory scheme for armed guards, security guards, and private investigators.  It explicitly excludes from its application a number of professions, including police and peace officers, lawyers, insurance adjusters and other employees of insurance companies acting in the scope of their duties, reporters and journalists, and all employees of both the federal and provincial governments.  Under the legislation, any person or company acting as an armed guard, private investigator, or security guard must obtain a valid license issued under the legislation.  The majority of the legislation deals specifically with the issuance, regulation, and enforcement of this new licensing regime.  Status: Passed first reading and is awaiting debate in principle by the House.

Bill No. 64 – Personal Health Information Act
This proposed legislation creates a regulatory scheme for the creation, collection, use, disclosure, retention and destruction of personal health information by practitioners, the government, district health authorities, pharmacies, continuing care facilities, and any other persons or organizations designated by regulation.  The legislation does not apply to those who collect personal health information for purposes other than health care or the planning and management of the health system.  It might be noted that similar legislation has been enacted in other Canadian jurisdictions for similar purposes.  Status: Passed first reading and is awaiting debate in principle by the House. 

Private Member’s Bills

Bill No. 58 – Day Care Act (amended) – Hon. Manning MacDonald (Cape Breton South)
This Bill requires the Minister of Community Services to undertake a review of day-care quality and access throughout the province by June 30, 2010.  It enumerates a number of items which must be encompassed within the review, but provides that the Minister may examine any other matters as determined by the Minister.  The amendment also provides for an opportunity for stakeholders to provide input during the review process.  Status: Passed first reading and is awaiting debate in principle by the House.

Bill No. 60 – Liquor Control Act (amended) – Leo Glavine (Kings West)
This Bill amends the Liquor Control Act to give discretion to the Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation to issue a permit to persons or businesses commonly known as U-Bru or U-Vin businesses.  These businesses assist with or participate in the beer, wine, and cider-making process by another person where the beverages are for personal consumption.  The Governor in Council is given authority to make regulations respecting the issuing of permits, the operation of such businesses, and the facilities in which such businesses operate.  Status: Passed first reading and is awaiting debate in principle by the House.

Bill No. 61 – Workers’ Compensation Act (amended) – Leo Glavine (Kings West)
This Bill repeals a previously enacted provision which discontinued survivor benefits upon remarriage.  These benefits are reinstated retroactively to the time when they were first discontinued.  Status: Passed on first reading and is awaiting debate in principle by the House.

Bill No. 62 – Correctional Services Act (amended) and Police Act (amended) – Hon. Michel Samson (Richmond)
This Bill amends both the Correctional Services Act and the Police Act to require the Minister to develop and implement a training program and to enact guidelines to govern employees and police officers who work with individuals with mental disabilities.  Status: Passed on first reading and is awaiting debate in principle by the House.

Bill No. 63 – Elections Act (amended) – Hon. Stephen McNeil (Annapolis)
This Bill adds definitions for “third party” and “third party direct endorsement advertising” to the Elections Act to allow for advertising during elections by persons or organizations in favour of a candidate, political party or organization, or electoral district association.  To be allowed to advertise, a third party must become a “registered sponsor”.  The amendments include a scheme for registering and deregistering as a sponsor, regulating advertising, and enforcing advertising limits during election periods.  Status: Passed on first reading and is awaiting debate in principle by the House.

Bill No. 65 – Donkin Coal Mine Act – Alfie MacLeod (Cape Breton West)
This Bill allows Nova Scotia Power Incorporated to use the Donkin coal mine to produce electricity for a four-year exploratory period.  During this period, NSPI will be exempt from provincial legislation placing limits on greenhouse gas emissions and from its emission allocations under the Environment Act for any emissions resulting from its use of the Donkin coal mine. The purpose of the bill is to provide for a period of time over which the economic viability of the Donkin coal mine can be determined.  Status: Passed on first reading and is awaiting debate in principle by the House.

Status Update on Government Bills

  • Bill No. 1 Motor Vehicle Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 2 Motor Vehicle Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 4 Engineering Profession Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 5 Halifax Regional Municipality Charter Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act has effect on and after January 13, 2009.
  • Bill No. 6 HRM by Design, An Act to Implement (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act has effect on and after January 13, 2009.
  • Bill No. 7 Trade Union Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009.  This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 9 Assessment Act (amended) and Municipal Grants Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 10 Personal Property Security Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 14 Judicature Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009.  This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 15 Beneficiaries Designation Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act has effect on and after February 17, 2009.
  • Bill No. 16 Motor Vehicle Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent and came into force November 5, 2009. 
  • Bill No. 17 Agricultural Marshland Conservation Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 20 Internal Trade Agreement Implementation Act (amended) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 24 Pipeline  Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009.  This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 25 Motor Vehicle  Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent and came into force November 5, 2009. 
  • Bill No. 27 Occupational Health and Safety Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 28 Education Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent and came into force November 5, 2009. 
  • Bill No. 29 Financial Measures (2009) Act - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. Sections 11, 13, 14, and 16 to 22 have effect on and after January 1, 2009.  Sections 27, 28, and 29  have effect on and after April 1, 2009.  Section 10 has effect on and after June 1, 2009.  Section 31 has effect on and after June 23, 2009.  Section 30 has effect on and after July 5, 2009.  Section 9 has effect on and after September 15, 2009.  Sections 24, 25, 26, 32, 33 and 34 have effect on and after November 1, 2009.  Sections 2 and 3 have effect on and after December 1, 2009.  Sections 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 23 have effect on and after January 1, 2010.  Section 35 has effect on and after June 30, 2010.  The remainder of this Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 30 Public Trustee Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 34 Emergency Management Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent and came into force November 5, 2009. 
  • Bill No. 38 Condominium Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 39 Uranium Exploration and Mining Prohibition Act - Received Royal Assent and came into force November 5, 2009. 
  • Bill No. 40 Labour Standards Code (amended) - Received Royal Assent and came into force November 5, 2009. 
  • Bill No. 42 Appropriations Act, 2009 - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act has effect on and after April 1, 2009.
  • Bill No. 44 Members and Public Employees Disclosure Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009.  Sections 1 to 4 have effect on and after January 1, 2010.  Section 5 has effect on and after October 20, 2009.
  • Bill No. 47 Dieticians Act - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 48 Pension Benefits Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 49 Efficiency Nova Scotia Corporation Act - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 50 Wilderness Areas Protection Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 52 Emergency Department Accountability Act - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009.  This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 54 Executive Council Act (amended) and Public Service Act (amended) - Received Royal Assent November 5, 2009. This Act will come into force on such day as the Governor in Council orders and declares by proclamation.
  • Bill No. 59 Security and Investigative Services Act - Passed 1st reading and is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 64 Personal Health Information Act - Passed 1st reading and is awaiting debate in principle by the House.

 

Status Update on Private Member’s Bills

  • Bill No. 3 Health Act (amended) – Hon. Stephen McNeil (Annapolis) - Passed 1st reading and is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 8 Provincial Finance Act (amended) – Leo Glavine (Kings West) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 11 Provincial Finance Act (amended) – Leo Glavine (Kings West) - Passed 1st reading and is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 12 Elections Act (amended) – Chuck Porter (Hants West) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 13 Sales Tax Act (amended) – Harold Theriault Jr. (Digby-Annapolis) - Passed 1st reading and is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 18 Diabetic Persons Support Act – Diana Whalen (Halifax Clayton Park) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 19 Life-threatening Illness Student Support Act – Kelly Regan (Bedford-Birch Cove) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House. 
  • Bill No. 21 Motor Vehicle Act (amended) – Andrew Younger (Dartmouth East) - Passed 1st reading and is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 22 Motor Vehicle Act (amended) – Chuck Porter (Hants West) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 23 Employment Support and Income Assistance Act (amended) – Chuck Porter (Hants West) - Passed 1st reading and is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 26 Advisory Council on Mental Health Act – Diana Whalen – (Halifax Clayton Park) - Passed 1st reading and is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 31 Uranium Mining Prohibition Act – Chuck Porter (Hants West) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 32 Education Act (amended) – Kelly Regan (Bedford-Birch Cove) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 33 Public Service Act (amended) – Alfie MacLeod (Cape Breton West) - Passed 1st reading; debate was adjourned on 2nd reading.
  • Bill No. 35 Elections Act (amended) – Hon. Murray K. Scott  (Cumberland South) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 36 Public Service Act (amended) – Hon. Stephen McNeil (Annapolis) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 37 Maintenance and Custody Act (amended) – Hon. Karen Casey (Colchester North) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 41 Multi-Year Funding Act – Hon. Manning MacDonald (Cape Breton South) - Passed 1st reading; debate was adjourned on 2nd reading.
  • Bill No. 46 Employment Support and Income Assistance Act (amended) – Hon. Stephen McNeil (Annapolis) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 51 Sydney Casino Profits Distribution Act – H. David Wilson (Glace Bay) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 53 Electricity Act (amended) – Andrew Younger (Dartmouth East) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 55 The Green Energy Promotion Act – Andrew Younger (Dartmouth East) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 56 Public Utilities Act (amended) – Andrew Younger (Dartmouth East) - Passed 1st reading; debate was adjourned on 2nd reading.
  • Bill No. 57 Income Tax Act (amended) – Harold Theriault Jr. (Digby-Annapolis) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 58 Daycare Act (amended) – Hon. Manning MacDonald (Cape Breton South) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 60 The Liquor Control Act (amended) – Leo Glavine (Kings West) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 61 Workers' Compensation Act (amended) – Leo Glavine (Kings West) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 62 Correctional Services Act (amended) and Police Act (amended) – Hon. Michel Samson (Richmond) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 63 Elections Act (amended) – Hon. Stephen McNeil (Annapolis) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 65 Donkin Coal Mine Act – Alfie MacLeod (Cape Breton West) - Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.

 

Status Update on Local Bills

  • Bill No. 43 Tidal View Manor in the Town of Yarmouth from Taxation, An Act to Amend Chapter 94 of the Acts of 1971, An Act to Exempt – Hon. Richard Hurlburt (Yarmouth) –Passed 1st reading; is awaiting debate in principle by the House.
  • Bill No. 45 Canning Library and Heritage Centre Association, An Act to Enable the Village of Canning to Transfer Certain Lands to the – Jim Morton (Kings North) – Received Royal Assent and came into force November 5, 2009. 

 

The Progress of Bills in the Nova Scotia Legislature

The legislative process begins when a Bill is presented by a Member of the House of Assembly and is given First Reading by the House, without debate.

A Bill is given Second Reading after being debated in principle in the House.

Following Second Reading, Bills are referred to one of the legislative committees – the Law Amendments Committee or Private and Local Bills Committee – for detailed discussion in meetings outside the House. Members of the public can attend the meetings of these Committees and make presentations respecting any Bill. Amendments are frequently considered and may be adopted and included in the bill when it is reported back to the House.

Bills reported back from the legislative committees are debated, clause by clause, by the members of the House acting as the Committee of the Whole House on Bills. The Bill is then reported back to the House.

The Bill receives Third Reading and the final approval of the House. There may be some debate at this stage but usually the Bill is voted on with no discussion.

The Bill receives Royal Assent when the Lieutenant Governor signs the final version. The Bill is then referred to as an Act, and is assigned a chapter number in the Statutes of Nova Scotia.

Commencement is the day on which the Act takes effect. Ordinarily, an Act takes effect when it is given Royal Assent. Sometimes, however, it provides that it will come into effect only when is it proclaimed to take effect by Order in Counsel to be made by the Cabinet.

Government Bills are introduced by the Minister of the department responsible for the legislation. Private Member's Bills are generally introduced by a member of the opposition parties. Government Bills have a higher likelihood of becoming law since the largest party in the Legislative Assembly supports the initiative. Except in a minority government, Private Member's Bills are unlikely to be brought forward for substantive debate or become law.

If you wish to be informed when a specific piece of legislation is scheduled to be heard by a legislative committee, please contact us and we will make arrangements for you to be so informed.

If you have questions regarding the legislation summarized above or would like to receive a copy of any bill, please contact Jennifer Forster at coxandpalmer.com or by phone at (902) 491-4107.

Status Summary Table: All bills introduced from Sep 17-Nov 5 (as of Nov 9)


Cox & Palmer publications are intended to provide information of a general nature only and not legal advice. The information presented is current to the date of publication and may be subject to change following the publication date.