This is page numbers of the Hansard for the 19th Assembly, 2nd 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 know.

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Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement
Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement

The Speaker Frederick Blake Jr.

Thank you, Member for Thebacha. Minister responsible for Justice.

Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement
Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement

R.J. Simpson Hay River North

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. The RCMP as the service provider in our agreement with Public Safety Canada provides -- so the financial accountability is to the federal government essentially. The responsibility for RCMP financial statements rests with the RCMP and the Government of Canada and is submitted as part of the public accounts of Canada. The RCMP expenditures are reported to the Legislative Assembly through the public accounts of the GNWT. Costs related to the RCMP fall under the policing services activity of the Department of Justice. Accountability for the Territorial Police Service Agreement, or TPSA, and costs incurred as part of our contract are provided by the RCMP through the department as part of that contract and actuals reviewed monthly between the ADM of Justice and the commanding officer. Then a financial account is provided to the department within three months of the end of the fiscal year. The agreement between ourselves and the RCMP contained almost 20 different reporting requirements that the RCMP provide us. These requirements are varying levels of details and are all part of the negotiation of the 20-year agreement. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement
Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement

Frieda Martselos Thebacha

Mr. Speaker, will the Minister commit to sharing the RCMP's multiyear financial plan for territorial police services with the Legislative Assembly? Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement
Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement

R.J. Simpson Hay River North

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. So the multiyear financial plan is a planning document used in the contract is a forecast of potential upcoming financial implications under the Territorial Police Service Agreement. The document is a high-level first step to business planning to address the identified priorities. So after the multiyear financial planning process, business cases are prepared by the RCMP for the Department of Justice. Those business cases are reviewed to determine if an FMB submission is substantiated, then, if FMB approves the submission, the Members of this Assembly receive the estimates -- or receive the adjustments in the main estimates. And we've seen that a number of times so far during this Assembly.

But I'm all about transparency, Mr. Speaker. And I can commit to looking into whether or not we have the support of Public Safety Canada and the RCMP, and the other jurisdictions who contract with the RCMP, to provide those documents. The department's going to look into whether other jurisdictions do this, and I'd be happy to share whatever we can. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement
Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement

Frieda Martselos Thebacha

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, under Article 19.0 of the Territorial Police Service Agreement, whatever the territorial Justice Minister requests a third party inter -- independent review of the RCMP or its police services, that review must be paid -- must be paid for a hundred percent by the Government of the Northwest Territories. However, if no independent third party review is requested, then by default, all reviews are conducted by the RCMP itself. Mr. Speaker, does the Minister consider this arrangement fair, or will he commit to amending this section of the agreement? Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement
Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement

R.J. Simpson Hay River North

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. So article 19 also mentions several steps in determining the RCMP-directed reviews where contract partners, such as ourselves, have input into the work. So it would be a hundred percent funded review as sort of a last step if we don't get satisfaction through those other methods. So every fiscal year the contract management committee, made up of ADMs and policing from across the country, Public Safety Canada and some municipal representatives, may provide certain matters to be audited in the RCMP's operations, and there's a strategic advantage to this process as the reviews are nationally coordinated and we benefit from the influence of larger contract partners in the process.

The same process exists for directed reviews. The contract management committee is consulted and offer input into the planning process. Next, there is a process where the commanding officer and the GNWT can jointly agree on specific directed reviews to be conducted which would be covered in the agreement at a 70/30 cost share ratio. This is done as an ongoing part of the contract management. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement
Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement

The Speaker Frederick Blake Jr.

Thank you, Minister. Final supplementary, Member for Thebacha.

Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement
Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement

Frieda Martselos Thebacha

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. The contract management committee within the Territorial Police Service Agreement consists of three representatives from the Government of the Northwest Territories, the federal Department of Safety, and the RCMP along with one associate member representing NWT municipalities. Can the Minister identify the individuals on this committee and how the selection process is done for who sits on it? Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement
Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement

R.J. Simpson Hay River North

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. The contract management committee is a national level group that supports information sharing and collaboration among provinces and territories, Public Safety Canada, and the RCMP. The contract management committee, or CMC, is also the formal forum for Public Safety Canada to consult with contract holders for anything that is upcoming that will impact governance, cost, quality or capacity of the policing service, or an RCMP program. Typically, ADMs responsible for policing in each jurisdiction represent their organization on the committee. In our case, it is the ADM, solicitor general branch, as the position is responsible for the management of the Territorial Police Service Agreement. There are also some members of the CMC who represent the municipalities who are funding RCMP at a 90/10 cost share as opposed to our 70/30 to provided policing in their communities, and that's outside of the Northwest Territories. And that's why there is a reference to municipalities in the agreement.

There are also several working groups across the country that address matters related to the contract that report to CMC. Some of these groups focus on financial implications, capital assets, national programs, and all of them to support accountability and transparency between Public Safety Canada, the RCMP, and contract partners like ourselves. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement
Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement

The Speaker Frederick Blake Jr.

Thank you, Minister. Oral questions. Member for Hay River South.

oral question 823-19(2): access to traditionally tanned hides
Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement

November 29th, 2021

Rocky Simpson Hay River South

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, my questions will be directed to the Minister responsible for ITI. Mr. Speaker, this government's talked about the need for a facility that would allow for the traditional tanning of hides. I have heard this discussion for the past 30 years, and NWT Indigenous artisans continue to find that traditional tanned moose and caribou hides difficult to access. We've talked about tourism, along with collectors that want products made in the North with real northern material which artisans now find difficult to procure.

So I'd ask the Minister, Mr. Speaker, can the Minister tell this Assembly if there is a financial program that specifically targets with programs specific dollars those artisans that are involved in traditional tanning of hides? Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

oral question 823-19(2): access to traditionally tanned hides
Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement

The Speaker Frederick Blake Jr.

Thank you, Member for Hay River South. Minister responsible for Industry, Tourism and Investment.

oral question 823-19(2): access to traditionally tanned hides
Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement

Caroline Wawzonek Yellowknife South

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, I'm also well aware of the problem. It's certainly not new. It's been raised to our offices as well.

At present, Mr. Speaker, there are arts council grants through the Department of E, C and E that can be certainly directed to all artisans in the territory. The Department of ITI provides supports for hide camps, tanning camps through -- generally through seed funding and funding that can go to the communities. So I anticipate that there could be more -- that the Member's looking for something more, but there are some creative ways that we can support those -- these projects for now. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

oral question 823-19(2): access to traditionally tanned hides
Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement

Rocky Simpson Hay River South

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, it's important, and we need to support and encourage those artisans who hold the traditional knowledge of tanning moose and caribou hides. These traditional tanned hides are a much sought after commodity here in the NWT. And this practice goes hand-in-hand with culture, arts, and tourism. So we need to provide a form of compensation for those tanning their own hides. We know it can take up to three weeks and many hours. And the artisan ends up either using the hide for themselves or selling it sometimes at a deflated price, and they deserve more.

So Mr. Speaker, will the Minister commit to having her department look at developing a program with specific dollars to encourage artisans to continue to and expand the traditional art of tanning moose and caribou hides? Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

oral question 823-19(2): access to traditionally tanned hides
Oral Questionsoral Question 822-19(2)territorial Policing Services Agreement

Caroline Wawzonek Yellowknife South

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, it certainly is disheartening to think that after all that work, the hides would be sold at a deflated price. They are in high demand. I've certainly heard that is a barrier to some of our artisans as well.

At present, Mr. Speaker, in conjunction with my colleague from E, C and E, there is a review taking place, this fiscal into next, around all of the arts funding programs, certainly wanting to ensure that we are understanding where our money is going and understanding if there are gaps that we should be filling. Of course, alongside that there is the much bigger review of the government renewal initiative to really take a look at all of what we are doing as a government and where we're supporting our -- the residents. So at this point, that -- it's through that process that we'll be able to consider whether or not we need to change the existing programs or look for new ones to better identify where to put government dollars. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.