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This Act is current to September 13, 2017
See the Tables of Legislative Changes for this Act’s legislative history, including any changes not in force.

Despite the above date, the Schedule to the Act, including the Map of Nisga'a Lands and the Appendices, is current to May 11, 2000. See "Amending Agreements" for amendments to the Schedule.

Nisga'a Final Agreement Act

[SBC 1999] CHAPTER 2

Preamble

WHEREAS the reconciliation between the prior presence of aboriginal peoples and the assertion of sovereignty by the Crown is of significant social and economic importance to all British Columbians;

AND WHEREAS Canadian courts have stated that this reconciliation is best achieved through negotiation and agreement, rather than through litigation or conflict;

AND WHEREAS the Nisga'a Nation, Canada and British Columbia have negotiated the Nisga'a Final Agreement to achieve this reconciliation, and to establish a new relationship among them;

AND WHEREAS the Nisga'a Final Agreement requires that British Columbia enact settlement legislation to give effect to the Nisga'a Final Agreement;

THEREFORE HER MAJESTY, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of the Province of British Columbia, enacts as follows:

Definition

1  (1) In this Act, "Nisga'a Final Agreement" means the Nisga'a Final Agreement among the Nisga'a Nation, Her Majesty the Queen in right of Canada and Her Majesty the Queen in right of British Columbia set out in the Schedule and includes

(a) that agreement as it is given effect by an Act of Canada, and

(b) amendments made in accordance with that agreement.

(2) If a word or expression used in this Act is defined in the Nisga'a Final Agreement, the word or expression has the same meaning in this Act as in the Nisga'a Final Agreement, unless the context requires otherwise.

Part 1 — Settlement Legislation

Treaty and land claims agreement

2  The Nisga'a Final Agreement is a treaty and a land claims agreement within the meaning of sections 25 and 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982.

Nisga'a Final Agreement

3  (1) The Nisga'a Final Agreement is approved, given effect, declared valid and has the force of law.

(2) Without limiting subsection (1), a person or body has the powers, rights, privileges and benefits conferred on the person or body by the Nisga'a Final Agreement and must perform the duties and is subject to the liabilities imposed on the person or body by the Nisga'a Final Agreement.

(3) Nothing in this Act that makes provision for a matter that is already provided for in the Nisga'a Final Agreement in any way limits this section.

Authorization to sign the Nisga'a Final Agreement

4  The Lieutenant Governor in Council may authorize a member of the Executive Council to sign the Nisga'a Final Agreement.

Nisga'a Final Agreement binding and can be relied on

5  The Nisga'a Final Agreement is binding on, and can be relied on by, all persons.

Nisga'a Nation's ownership of lands

6  (1) [Repealed 2014-32-3.]

(2) The Nisga'a Nation owns the estate in fee simple, as set out in the Lands Chapter of the Nisga'a Final Agreement, in the following lands:

(a) the Nisga'a Lands identified in paragraphs 1 and 2 of the Lands Chapter of the Nisga'a Final Agreement;

(b) Category A Lands and Category B Lands.

Nisga'a Nation Taxation Agreement

6.1  (1) In this section, "Taxation Agreement" means the Taxation Agreement, referred to in paragraphs 21 to 23 of the Taxation Chapter of the Nisga'a Final Agreement, which agreement was tabled in the Legislative Assembly on November 30, 1998, and includes an amendment to the Taxation Agreement, made in accordance with the terms of the Taxation Agreement, if the amending agreement setting out the amendment

(a) is substantially in the form approved by the Lieutenant Governor in Council, and

(b) has been signed by the parties and published under subsection (5).

(2) The Taxation Agreement continues in effect and remains valid and its provisions have the force of law during the period they are in effect.

(3) The minister charged with the administration of the Financial Administration Act is authorized to enter into an agreement amending the Taxation Agreement and may sign the amending agreement before or after it has been approved by the Lieutenant Governor in Council.

(4) As provided in paragraphs 21 and 22 of the Taxation Chapter of the Nisga'a Final Agreement, the Taxation Agreement does not form part of the Nisga'a Final Agreement and is not a treaty or land claims agreement within the meaning of section 25 or 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982.

(5) The minister must publish in the Gazette the Taxation Agreement and any agreement amending the Taxation Agreement.

Harvest Agreement

7  (1) The minister responsible for fisheries has the authority, on behalf of Her Majesty the Queen in right of British Columbia, to enter into the Harvest Agreement described in the Fisheries Chapter of the Nisga'a Final Agreement.

(2) The Harvest Agreement does not form part of the Nisga'a Final Agreement and it is not a treaty or land claims agreement within the meaning of section 25 or 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982.

Judicial or administrative proceedings

8  (1) If, in any judicial or administrative proceeding, an issue arises in respect of

(a) the interpretation or validity of the Nisga'a Final Agreement, or

(b) the validity or applicability of any settlement legislation or any Nisga'a law

the issue must not be decided until the party to the proceeding raising the issue has properly served notice on the Attorney General of British Columbia, the Attorney General of Canada and the Nisga'a Lisims Government.

(2) The notice required under subsection (1) must

(a) describe the judicial or administrative proceeding in which the issue arises,

(b) state whether the issue arises in respect of the matters referred to in subsection (1) (a) or (b) or both,

(c) state the day on which the issue is to be argued,

(d) give particulars necessary to show the point to be argued, and

(e) be served at least 14 days before the day of argument unless the court or tribunal authorizes a shorter notice.

(3) In any judicial or administrative proceeding to which subsection (1) applies, the Attorney General of British Columbia, the Attorney General of Canada and the Nisga'a Lisims Government may appear and participate in the proceeding as parties with the same rights as any other party to the proceeding.

(4) The Judicial Review Procedure Act applies to an application for judicial review under the following provisions of the Nisga'a Final Agreement as if the decision under review were made pursuant to a statutory power of decision as defined in that Act:

(a) paragraph 17 of the Nisga'a Government Chapter;

(b) paragraph 26 of the Eligibility and Enrolment Chapter.

(5) [Repealed 2014-32-3.]

Power to make orders and regulations

9  The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make orders and regulations that the Lieutenant Governor in Council considers necessary or advisable for the purpose of carrying out any of the provisions of the Nisga'a Final Agreement.

Authorization to enter into agreements

10  (1) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may authorize any member of the Executive Council, on behalf of Her Majesty the Queen in right of British Columbia, to enter into an agreement that is contemplated by the Nisga'a Final Agreement.

(2) Subsection (1) does not apply to the Harvest Agreement referred to in section 7 or to agreements referred to in section 29 of the Environmental Assessment Act.

Part 2 — Real Property Taxation

Definitions for Part

10.01  In this Part:

"improvements" has the same meaning as in the Assessment Act;

"land" has the same meaning as in the Assessment Act;

"Nisga'a land registry" means a land registry that is part of the land title or land registry system established by the Nisga'a Lisims Government under paragraph 50 of the Nisga'a Government Chapter of the Nisga'a Final Agreement;

"non-citizen" means a person who is not a Nisga'a citizen;

"property tax agreement" means the Real Property Tax Co-ordination Agreement, dated for reference July 31, 2014, between Her Majesty the Queen in right of the Province of British Columbia and the Nisga'a Nation, including Schedules A and B attached to the Real Property Tax Co-ordination Agreement and any amendments to the Real Property Tax Co-ordination Agreement that are made in accordance with its terms and published under section 10.07;

"Provincial Requisitioning Authority" has the same meaning as in the property tax agreement;

"real property" means land or improvements, or both, located within Nisga'a Lands or an interest in land or improvements, or both, located within Nisga'a Lands;

"real property taxes" means taxes imposed on the basis of the value of real property.

Authority to impose tax on non-citizen owners or occupiers and provide exemptions

10.02  Without limiting any provision of this Act, the Nisga'a Lisims Government may, by law, in accordance with the terms of the property tax agreement,

(a) impose real property taxes on non-citizens, in respect of their interests in real property, and

(b) provide exemptions from those real property taxes.

Exemptions from Provincial taxation

10.03  Interests in real property are exempt from taxes under

(a) the School Act, and

(b) except to the extent provided in Article 5.8 of the property tax agreement, the Taxation (Rural Area) Act.

Administration fees

10.04  If the Nisga'a Lisims Government imposes a real property tax specifically for the purpose of collecting the amount required to pay a requisition from a Provincial Requisitioning Authority and, under the enactment authorizing the requisition, if the requisition were received by a municipality, the municipality would be entitled to an administration fee for collecting tax to pay the requisition, the Nisga'a Lisims Government is entitled to an administration fee in an amount determined as if the requisition had been received by a municipality.

Excess home owner grants

10.05  In accordance with the property tax agreement, the minister charged with the administration of the Financial Administration Act may pay to the Nisga'a Nation for a taxation year, from amounts appropriated for the purpose, the amount described as the "Excess Amount" in Article 12.3 of the property tax agreement.

Application of Municipal Finance Authority Act

10.06  The Municipal Finance Authority Act does not apply in relation to Nisga'a Lands.

Publication of property tax agreement

10.07  The minister must publish in the Gazette

(a) the property tax agreement, and any amendment to it, and

(b) if the property tax agreement is terminated in accordance with its terms, notice of the termination.

Application of Offence Act

10.08  Section 5 of the Offence Act does not apply in relation to this Part.

Spent

11-69  [Consequential amendments. Spent. 1999-2-11 to 69.]

Commencement

70  This Act, except section 4, comes into force by regulation of the Lieutenant Governor in Council.

Contents | Sections 1-70 | Schedule - Table of Contents | Preamble | Chapter 1 | Chapter 2 | Chapter 3 | Chapter 4 | Chapter 5 | Chapter 6 | Chapter 7 | Chapter 8 | Chapter 9 | Chapter 10 | Chapter 11 | Chapter 12 | Chapter 13 | Chapter 14 | Chapter 15 | Chapter 16 | Chapter 17 | Chapter 18 | Chapter 19 | Chapter 20 | Chapter 21 | Chapter 22 | Schedule - Map of Nisga'a Lands | Appendix - Contents | Appendix - Introduction | Appendix A | Appendix B | Appendix C | Appendix D | Appendix E | Appendix F | Appendix G | Appendix H | Appendix I | Appendix J | Appendix K | Appendix L | Appendix M