This is page numbers 39 - 61 of the Hansard for the 13th Assembly, 7th Session. The original version can be accessed on the Legislative Assembly's website or by contacting the Legislative Assembly Library. The word of the day was nunavut.

Topics

Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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The Chair Jane Groenewegen

Thank you. Bill 4 is now ready for third reading. Thank you, Mr. Dent. Does the committee agree to move on to Bill 5, Nunavut Power Utilities Statutes Amendment Act?

Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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Some Hon. Members

Agreed.

Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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The Chair Jane Groenewegen

Thank you. I will ask Minister Arlooktoo if he would introduce the bill.

Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

March 22nd, 1999

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Goo Arlooktoo Baffin South

Thank you, Madam Chair. I am pleased to be here today to review the Nunavut Power Utilities Statutes Amendment Act. This bill, its companion legislation, the Northwest Territories Power Corporation Division Measures Act, the Act to Amend the Public Utilities Act and the Northwest Territories/Nunavut Transition Agreement are the result of considerable discussions and negotiations regarding the future of the Northwest Territories Power Corporation. These negotiations included the GNWT, OIC, NTI and the Western Coalition.

The amendments being proposed in this bill are being proposed under the unique authority vested in this Legislative Assembly under section 76.05 of the Nunavut Act. These bills have been drafted in cooperation with the Office of the Interim Commissioner and Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated.

This cooperative approach was formally confirmed with the reading of the Acting Interim Commissioner's letter of recommendation in the Legislative Assembly on March 16th. Formal notification of our consultation with NTI was confirmed with the letter from its President.

Madam Chair, main elements of this bill and the related Transition Agreement for the Power Corporation are the same as those being proposed in the Northwest Territories Power Corporation Division Measures Act.

As Minister Dent noted in his comments on Bill 4, this bill has also been introduced on two separate occasions, but we have been unable to proceed without final consensus on the transition agreement between Nunavut and the Northwest Territories. Fortunately, the parties have now resolved the outstanding issues and the agreement has been forwarded to the federal government for GIC approval.

Madam Chair, this agreement provides for an interim or status quo arrangement by retaining a single corporation to provide power in both territories for a two-year period. However, talk of status quo arrangement can be somewhat misleading. There cannot be a strictly status quo arrangement because under the provisions of the Nunavut Act, legislation will duplicate, thereby creating two power corporations. If this were to occur without a Transition Agreement in place, the Power Corporation in Nunavut would have operational staff, but no ability to deliver headquarters functions.

These legislative amendments and the Transition Agreement have been negotiated to allow for the continued operation of the existing power corporation in both territories for a two-year period after division. During the first year of the agreement, the government of Nunavut and the GNWT have the opportunity to pursue a lasting agreement on a shared power corporation. If no agreement can be reached, a further one year period has been agreed to that will allow for an orderly wind-down of the joint corporation and will provide the opportunity to build capacity at the headquarters level.

Nunavut will continue to be represented on the Board of Directors of the Joint Corporation with three members appointed on the recommendation of the Nunavut Minister.

NTPC staff currently working in Nunavut will continue as employees of the joint corporation during the transition period. The agreement also ensures that these employees transfer to the new Nunavut Power Corporation, if and when it is created, with all of their rights and benefits intact.

The agreement includes a methodology for the equitable division of the assets and liabilities, should the corporation divide.

Finally, the agreement includes a method for the allocation of dividends during the transition period based on the split of equity apportioned to each territory.

Madam Chair, I would like to extend my appreciation to the Acting Interim Commission, NTI and their hard-working staff for their efforts in working towards an agreement that ensures a safe, reliable and cost-effective power supply in both Nunavut and the Northwest Territories. I would also like to thank the Western Coalition for their work during this process. Those are my comments, Madam Chair.

Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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The Chair Jane Groenewegen

Thank you, Mr. Arlooktoo. I will ask Mr. O'Brien, from the Nunavut Legislation Committee, to present the committee's overview of their bill.

Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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Kevin O'Brien Kivallivik

Thank you, Madam Chair. The Special Committee on Nunavut Legislation met on March 17, 1999, to review Bill 5, Nunavut Power Utilities Statutes Amendment Act. Bill 5 will amend the Northwest Territories Power Corporation Act as duplicated in Nunavut to establish the Nunavut Power Corporation and to allow the Northwest Territories Power Corporation to provide services to Nunavut. It also makes several consequential technical amendments to other legislation as duplicated in Nunavut.

This legislation is enabling legislation that allows for the limitation of the Transition Agreement, as negotiated over the past year and a half by the Government of the Northwest Territories, the Office of the Interim Commissioner, Nunavut Tunngavik and the Western Coalition.

The Special Committee on Nunavut Legislation notes that Bill 5, Nunavut Power Utilities Statutes Amendment Act, was recommended by the Office of the Interim Commissioner and Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated and, as such, we support the passage of this bill. This bill is necessary to allow for the order and development of a power utility in Nunavut. Committee members may have questions or comments as we proceed. Thank you, Madam Chair.

Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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The Chair Jane Groenewegen

Thank you, Mr. O'Brien. Does the committee agree that we should ask the Minister to bring witnesses?

Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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Some Hon. Members

Agreed.

Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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The Chair Jane Groenewegen

Thank you. I would ask the Sergeant-at-Arms to escort the witnesses in please. Mr. Arlooktoo, could you please introduce again, for the record, the witnesses?

Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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Goo Arlooktoo Baffin South

Thank you, Madam Chair. I am here with Mr. Richard Bargery, assistant deputy minister of the Division Secretariat, and Rebecca Veinott, who is our legislative council from the Department of Justice.

Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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The Chair Jane Groenewegen

Thank you. General comments on the bill? Does everyone agree?

Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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Some Hon. Members

Agreed.

Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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The Chair Jane Groenewegen

Because of the nature of this bill, we will stand down clauses 1 through 3 and proceed with consideration of the schedules. Agreed?

Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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Some Hon. Members

Agreed.

Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 19: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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The Chair Jane Groenewegen

Thank you. On page 2, schedule A, item 1. Agreed?