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This Act is current to November 1, 2017
See the Tables of Legislative Changes for this Act’s legislative history, including any changes not in force.

Local Government Act

[RSBC 2015] CHAPTER 1

Deposited with Clerk of the Legislative Assembly on December 16, 2015

Part 19 — General Matters and Provincial Authorities

Division 1 — Certification of Senior Officials

Board of examiners

754  (1) There is to be a board of examiners for the purposes of this Division, composed of 3 members appointed by the Lieutenant Governor in Council on the recommendation of the minister, of whom

(a) one must be nominated by the Union of British Columbia Municipalities,

(b) one must be nominated by the Local Government Management Association of British Columbia, and

(c) one must be nominated by the minister.

(2) The members of the board of examiners hold office for a term of 3 years or until their successors are appointed.

(3) If a vacancy occurs because of the death or resignation of a member, the member's successor must be nominated and appointed in the same manner as the member originally nominated and appointed.

(4) The members of the board of examiners must not receive remuneration for their services, but must be paid by the minister the amount of their travelling and other personal expenses necessarily incurred by them in the discharge of their official duties.

(5) A member of the board of examiners may be nominated and reappointed for further terms.

Powers of board

755  (1) The board of examiners may do one or more of the following:

(a) establish qualifications and standards for municipal, regional district or improvement district employment according to office and grades;

(b) grant certificates according to grades and skill to persons possessing the qualifications and meeting the standards;

(c) set and hold examinations for, or pass on the credentials of, a person who is a candidate for a certificate;

(d) cancel a certificate on proof of dishonesty or gross negligence on the part of the holder.

(2) The powers and duties of the board of examiners must be exercised and performed in accordance with any applicable regulations made by the board.

(3) The records of the board of examiners and the administrative duties in connection with them are the responsibility of the inspector.

Board may make regulations

756  With the approval of the Lieutenant Governor in Council on the recommendation of the minister, the board of examiners may make regulations respecting

(a) the exercise and performance of its powers and duties,

(b) examinations and certificates, and

(c) any other matter within the jurisdiction of the board.

Application to City of Vancouver

757  This Division applies to the City of Vancouver.

Division 2 — Inspector of Municipalities

Inspector of municipalities

758  (1) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may appoint an inspector of municipalities who, in addition to the powers and duties established under this Act, has the powers and duties that may be assigned to the inspector.

(2) The inspector is to be attached to the office of the minister and is to be under the control of the minister.

Official seal and records

759  (1) The inspector is to have an official seal inscribed with the words "Inspector of Municipalities of British Columbia".

(2) Every paper record purporting to be issued by the inspector and impressed with the seal of the office is admissible in evidence in all courts of British Columbia without proof of the sealing or of the signature of the inspector, or of the inspector's deputy, to the record.

(3) A copy of a record of the office of the inspector, or a copy of a record kept in the inspector's office, that is certified to be a true copy by the inspector or the inspector's deputy is admissible in evidence in all courts of British Columbia as of equal validity with the original record.

Certificate of approval for money bylaws

760  (1) A local government that adopts any of the following bylaws may apply to the inspector for a certificate approving the bylaw:

(a) a loan authorization bylaw;

(b) a security issuing bylaw;

(c) a bylaw imposing a special assessment or a special rate under any Act.

(2) Subject to subsection (3), the inspector must not grant a certificate

(a) until after the time limit for giving notice of intention to make an application to court to quash the bylaw, or

(b) while a proceeding that calls the validity of the bylaw into question, or that seeks to quash the bylaw, is pending.

(3) If the time limit referred to in subsection (2) (a) has passed before the application for inspector approval is made under subsection (1), the inspector may, in the inspector's discretion,

(a) disregard any proceeding in which the validity of the bylaw is in question that was commenced after the application for approval was made, and

(b) proceed to give the certificate of approval without reference to the proceeding.

(4) A certificate given under subsection (3) has the same effect as if the action or other proceeding had not been commenced.

(5) If a bylaw has been approved, the inspector may also approve the debentures or other securities issued in conformity with it.

(6) A certificate issued under subsection (5) may bear the actual or lithographed signature of the inspector.

(7) The inspector's decision on granting, withholding or refusing a certificate is not subject to an application for judicial review or any other proceeding in any court of British Columbia.

Inquiry into application for certificate

761  (1) The inspector may direct and hold an inquiry into an application for a certificate under this Division, and may hear and determine protests.

(2) An inquiry under this section may be held by the inspector, a deputy of the inspector or another person authorized by the inspector.

(3) Section 764 (3) and (4) [inquiries into local government matters] applies to an inquiry under this section.

Appeal from inspector's decisions in relation to borrowing

762  (1) An appeal lies to the minister from a decision of the inspector

(a) refusing to approve a loan authorization bylaw, or

(b) withholding or refusing a certificate applied for under this Division.

(2) On an appeal under subsection (1), the minister must hear and determine the matter, and may confirm, vary or rescind the decision of the inspector.

(3) The determination on the appeal is conclusive and binding on all parties, including the inspector.

Certificate conclusive of validity

763  (1) The production of a certificate issued under this Division or of the certified copy of a certificate is, in all courts and places and for all purposes, conclusive evidence that

(a) the bylaw, debenture or other security described in or covered by the certificate has been validly made and issued, and

(b) all statutory and other requirements have been complied with.

(2) The validity of a bylaw, debenture or other security referred to in subsection (1) may not be attacked, questioned or adjudicated on in any proceeding in any court of British Columbia.

(3) A certificate under this Division may be in the following form:

Under the authority of the Local Government Act, I certify that this [bylaw has been lawfully and validly made and enacted] [or debenture or other security has been lawfully made and issued, as the case may be] and that its validity is not open to question on any ground in any court of British Columbia.
Dated ................................ [month, day, year].
...........................................................................
Inspector of Municipalities of British Columbia

Inquiries into local government matters

764  (1) With the approval of the Lieutenant Governor in Council, the inspector may hold an inquiry if

(a) the inspector considers it expedient to make an inquiry into or concerning a matter connected with a municipality or regional district or the conduct of a part of its business, or

(b) a complaint is made to the inspector about a matter of municipal or regional district business, actual or projected.

(2) An inquiry under this section may be held by the inspector, a deputy of the inspector or another person authorized by the inspector and must be open to the public.

(3) For the purposes of an inquiry under this section, the person holding the inquiry has the powers, privileges and protection of a commission under sections 16, 17, 22 (1), 23 (a), (b) and (d) to (f) and 32 of the Public Inquiry Act.

(4) The costs, fees and expenses of the inquiry must be paid by the municipality or regional district, as applicable.

(5) During an inquiry, the person holding the inquiry may do one or more of the following:

(a) direct that no action be taken by the council or board on any or all matters designated by the person holding the inquiry;

(b) direct municipal or regional district employees not to proceed with any matter designated by the person holding the inquiry;

(c) suspend a municipal or regional district officer or employee if the person holding the inquiry considers the conduct of the officer or employee warrants suspension.

(6) The person holding the inquiry may rescind or amend a direction or suspension under subsection (5).

(7) Subject to rescission or amendment, a direction or suspension under subsection (5) remains in effect until an order is made under subsection (9).

(8) The person holding the inquiry must report to the Lieutenant Governor in Council

(a) on the evidence received,

(b) on any direction or suspension under subsection (5), and

(c) on the person's recommendations.

(9) On receipt of the report under subsection (8), the Lieutenant Governor in Council may make an order that the Lieutenant Governor in Council considers is in the public interest.

(10) An order under subsection (9) is binding on the municipality or regional district, its council or board, and every elected or appointed official, officer and employee of the municipality or regional district in the same way as if it were a regulation made by the Lieutenant Governor in Council under this Act.

Additional inquiry authority in relation to regional districts

765  (1) The council of a member municipality of a regional district, or a director of an electoral area of the regional district, may make a complaint to the inspector regarding any bylaw, order, decision or action of the board.

(2) If a complaint is received, the inspector, or a person authorized by the inspector, may hold an inquiry.

(3) An inquiry under this section must be open to the public.

(4) Section 764 (3) and (4) applies to the person holding the inquiry under this section.

(5) The person holding the inquiry must report to the Lieutenant Governor in Council on the evidence received and the representations and argument made and must make recommendations.

(6) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may, on receipt of the report referred to in subsection (5), make an order.

(7) An order under subsection (6) is binding on the board.

Division 3 — Administrative Commissioner

Definitions

766  In this Division:

"commissioner" means a commissioner appointed for a jurisdiction under this Division;

"jurisdiction" means a municipality or regional district.

Appointment of administrative commissioner

767  (1) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may appoint a commissioner for a jurisdiction

(a) on a report of the inspector that the jurisdiction has failed to or cannot make due provision for the payment of either the principal of or the interest on a debenture issued or guaranteed by the jurisdiction, when the payment is due, or

(b) if authorized by an order of the Supreme Court under subsection (2).

(2) If a jurisdiction for any reason fails to provide for the payment of either the principal of or the interest on a debenture issued or guaranteed by the jurisdiction, when the payment is due, any creditor or elector of the jurisdiction may apply to the Supreme Court for an order authorizing the appointment of a commissioner for the jurisdiction to carry out the duties and functions provided for in this Division.

(3) This section applies to a debenture of which, under any Act, the jurisdiction has been made responsible for the payment of the principal and the interest.

(4) A commissioner has all the powers and authority that, before the appointment, were vested in or exercisable by the local government, the mayor or chair of the jurisdiction, the municipal police board, the parks commission, the civic properties commission, any other local government commission, the board of education and the officers of the jurisdiction.

(5) A commissioner must be paid out of the jurisdiction's revenue the salary and other expenses incidental to the commissionership as authorized by the Lieutenant Governor in Council.

Substitution of commissioner

768  (1) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may at any time cancel the appointment of a commissioner and, on that cancellation, all the powers vested in that commissioner under this Act end.

(2) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may appoint another commissioner for the jurisdiction to replace a person whose appointment is cancelled under subsection (1).

(3) If a commissioner dies, the Lieutenant Governor in Council may appoint another commissioner for the jurisdiction as a replacement.

(4) A commissioner appointed under subsection (2) or (3) has all the powers and authority vested in a commissioner by this Division.

Acting commissioner

769  (1) With the approval of the Lieutenant Governor in Council, a commissioner may appoint a person as acting commissioner.

(2) An acting commissioner under subsection (1) has and may exercise all the powers and authority of the commissioner

(a) during any temporary absence of the commissioner, or

(b) if the commissioner is for any reason unable to perform the commissioner's duties.

(3) If the acting commissioner appears to have acted in the exercise of any power or authority of the commissioner, it is conclusively deemed that the acting commissioner acted for one of the reasons referred to in subsection (2).

Powers transferred to commissioner

770  (1) On the appointment of a commissioner,

(a) the members of the local government, the municipal police board members, the parks commissioners, the civic properties commissioners, any other local government commissioners and all officers of the jurisdiction are deemed to have retired from office, and

(b) all the rights, powers and authority vested in or exercisable by the local government, the mayor or chair of the jurisdiction, the municipal police board, the parks commission, the civic properties commission, any other local government commission and other officers of the jurisdiction under any Act are vested in and exercisable by the commissioner.

(2) This section does not prevent the full exercise by the commissioner of the powers exercisable by the local government or other municipal body relative to the appointment, control or removal of its officers and employees.

(3) On the appointment of a commissioner,

(a) the school trustees elected in that jurisdiction for the school district of which the jurisdiction is comprised or forms a part are deemed to have retired from office, and

(b) with the approval of the Lieutenant Governor in Council, the commissioner must appoint a sufficient number of persons to maintain the jurisdiction's quota of school trustees.

(4) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may confer on a commissioner any rights, powers and authority that could by order be conferred on a council under any Act.

Power of commissioner to make bylaws

771  (1) A commissioner may adopt bylaws that might be adopted by the local government.

(2) The commissioner must submit a bylaw under subsection (1) for the approval of the Lieutenant Governor in Council and, on being approved by the Lieutenant Governor in Council, and on being registered if required, the bylaw comes into force and is valid and binding in all respects as a bylaw of the jurisdiction.

Powers of commissioner to borrow

772  (1) Despite this Act or the Community Charter, a commissioner

(a) may make, amend and repeal bylaws authorizing the borrowing from any person of amounts referred to in subsection (2), and

(b) subject to this section, may borrow under a bylaw referred to in paragraph (a) from any person.

(2) A bylaw under subsection (1) may authorize the borrowing of amounts on the credit of the jurisdiction, not repayable within the same year, that may be necessary for the replacement or reconstruction of, or for the purchase, construction and installation of, alterations, extensions or additions to existing services of the jurisdiction or any matter or thing connected with them.

(3) A bylaw adopted under subsection (1) may make provision for granting to the lender the security approved by the minister, and the commissioner may grant that security under the bylaw.

(4) Before the adoption of a bylaw under subsection (1), the terms of the bylaw, the nature of the security to be issued and the terms of repayment must be submitted in detail to and be approved by the minister, who may impose the conditions the minister considers advisable.

(5) A bylaw under subsection (1) does not come into force until approved by the Lieutenant Governor in Council.

(6) Proof of the approval of the bylaw by the Lieutenant Governor in Council under subsection (5) is, in all courts and places and for all purposes, conclusive evidence that the bylaw has been lawfully and validly made, and that all statutory and other requirements have been complied with.

(7) The validity of a bylaw under subsection (1) must not be attacked or questioned or adjudicated on in any proceeding in a court in British Columbia.

Taxes for sinking fund purposes

773  With the approval of the inspector, a commissioner may, by bylaw, determine what amount, if any, is to be imposed or provided for sinking fund purposes in any year.

Parcel tax rolls

774  (1) All the powers vested in the council as to a parcel tax roll review panel are vested in the commissioner.

(2) A parcel tax roll for a jurisdiction for which a commissioner has been appointed,

(a) as authenticated by the parcel tax roll review panel or by the commissioner or acting commissioner purporting to sit as the parcel tax roll review panel, and

(b) as further determined and confirmed on appeal from the parcel tax roll review panel,

is deemed to be valid and binding on the jurisdiction and on all persons.

(3) A complaint to the parcel tax roll review panel or an appeal to the Supreme Court, as provided under the Community Charter, must not be sustained or allowed on the grounds that land in a jurisdiction for which a commissioner is appointed has been valued at too high an amount, if the assessment complained of or appealed against is not more than the assessed value of the same land according to the authenticated real property assessment roll for the year immediately preceding.

(4) Subsection (3) applies despite any Act, but without affecting the provisions of an Act relating to complaints or appeals against assessments of improvements.

Differences between commissioner and board of education

775  Any difference arising between the commissioner and the board of education on matters generally within the jurisdiction of the board of education must be determined by the Lieutenant Governor in Council, whose decision is final.

Commissioner reports to minister

776  The commissioner must report to the minister as directed by the Lieutenant Governor in Council.

Election after commissioner appointed

777  (1) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may, by regulation, provide for the election of a local government for a jurisdiction for which a commissioner has been appointed.

(2) On the election of a local government under subsection (1), the Lieutenant Governor in Council may, by order, revoke the powers and authority vested in the commissioner and, on that revocation, the local government has and may exercise all the powers and authority conferred by statute or by law on a local government of that type.

(3) If provision for an election is made under subsection (1), the Lieutenant Governor in Council may also make regulations for the election of the required number of school trustees and, on their election, may by order terminate any appointment made by the commissioner under section 770.

Restriction on legal proceedings

778  (1) In relation to a jurisdiction for which there is at the time a commissioner appointed under this Division, a person must not, except with the consent of the Attorney General,

(a) commence or continue a proceeding in any court in British Columbia in respect of or for the recovery of either the principal of or the interest on a debenture or other security issued by or guaranteed by the jurisdiction or for the payment of which the jurisdiction is liable, or

(b) commence or continue a proceeding in or out of a court in British Columbia in respect of or for the recovery of either the principal of or the interest on a debenture or other security guaranteed by the jurisdiction, if the property pledged or hypothecated in security of the debt represented by the debenture or security was not the property of the jurisdiction at the time of the pledge or hypothecation, but is at the commencement or continuance of the proceeding.

(2) Subsection (1) (a) applies despite any Act.

Regulations for purposes of this Division

779  (1) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations to carry this Division into effect.

(2) Without limiting subsection (1), the Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations

(a) to remove any difficulty that may arise in the administration by the commissioner, and

(b) prescribing procedures governing the commissioner's administration that are considered desirable.

Division 4 — Other Provincial Authorities

Publication of letters patent

780  (1) On the issue of letters patent under this Act,

(a) the minister must publish a notice in the Gazette in the form prescribed under subsection (2), and

(b) the municipal council, regional district board or improvement district trustees, as applicable, must publish in a newspaper

(i) a copy of the letters patent, or

(ii) a synopsis that states where the letters patent may be examined and, if a boundary description is set out in the synopsis, where a map of the boundary description may be viewed.

(2) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations prescribing the form of notice under subsection (1) (a).

(3) Letters patent issued for the purpose of giving effect to a final agreement within the meaning of section 29.1 of the Interpretation Act may exempt a municipality or regional district from the requirements under subsection (1) (b).

Further powers in relation to assets

781  The minister may confer on a local government further powers to manage and dispose of assets, including taxation revenue, that the minister considers necessary or advisable.

Appeal to minister respecting construction of drains

782  (1) A person may appeal to the minister if,

(a) in order to provide an outlet for a surface drain, the person must continue the drain into an adjoining parcel of land or across or along a highway, and

(b) the owner of an adjoining parcel or the council refuses to enter into an agreement under which the drain may be continued.

(2) On an appeal under subsection (1), the minister may direct the municipality or regional district, as applicable, to provide the necessary works and may determine by whom the cost of the works must be borne.

Power to make regulations

783  (1) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations referred to in section 41 [powers to make regulations] of the Interpretation Act.

(2) Without limiting subsection (1), the Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations respecting any matter for which regulations of the Lieutenant Governor in Council are contemplated by this Act.

(3) In addition to any other variation authority that is specifically provided, a regulation that may be made by the Lieutenant Governor in Council or a minister under any provision of this Act, or of the Community Charter as it is made applicable under this Act, may

(a) establish different classes of bylaws, municipalities, regional districts, other bodies governed by this Act, persons, property, circumstances and other matters,

(b) make different provisions, including exceptions, for different classes referred to in paragraph (a), and

(c) make different provisions, including exceptions, for different bylaws, different municipalities, different regional districts, different bodies governed by this Act, different parts of municipalities or regional districts, different areas or different parts of areas of other bodies governed by this Act and different circumstances and other matters.

Contents | Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8 | Part 9 | Part 10 | Part 11 | Part 12 | Part 13 | Part 14 | Part 15 | Part 16 | Part 17 | Part 18 | Part 19 | Schedule | Revision Schedule