Resources on Risks to Property Rights in Alberta

The Board of RMCLA have been discussing the issues raised by a number of pieces of Alberta Legislation related to land and land use. This is a very complex area, touching on issues of property rights, public policy in land use, environmental issues in land use, protection of watersheds and others. We are looking at putting together a program or debate on the issues and hope to have that pulled together soon. In the meantime, some resources to help us all get up to speed on, or keep on top of, these issues:

1. Bill 19 – now called the “LAND ASSEMBLY PROJECT AREA ACT” (which is awaiting proclamation):
http://www.qp.alberta.ca/574.cfm?page=L02P5.cfm&leg_type=Acts&isbncln=9780779742189&display=html

2. Land Stewardship Act, SA 2009, c.A-26.8 (formerly Bill 36): http://www.assembly.ab.ca/ISYS/LADDAR_files/docs/bills/bill/legislature_27/session_2/20090210_bill-036.pdf. Earlier this month the government introduced Bill 10, the Alberta Land Stewardship Amendment Act, 2011 to amend that legislation:
http://www.assembly.ab.ca/net/index.aspx?p=bills_status&selectbill=010

3. Electric Statutes Amendment Act (formerly Bill 50): http://www.assembly.ab.ca/ISYS/LADDAR_files/docs/bills/bill/legislature_27/session_2/20090210_bill-050.pdf

4. Alberta Bill of Rights: http://www.qp.alberta.ca/documents/Acts/A14.pdf

5. Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms:  http://laws.justice.gc.ca/en/charter/

The group which appears to be leading the fight against these Bills/Laws is Landowners Against Bills 19, 36 and 50. Their website is at: http://www.landownersagainstbills.com/

A great deal of information can be found on that site including some analysis by Keith Wilson, a lawyer who has been very active in opposing these pieces of legislation.

As with most things, there is a contrary position. Some interesting comments, authored by Prof. Nigel Bankes of the U of C Faculty of Law, in relation to this legislation, and the amendments, may be found at: http://ablawg.ca/2011/03/04/regulatory-chill-weak-regional-plans-and-lots-of-jobs-for-lawyers-the-proposed-amendments-to-the-alberta-land-stewardship-act/#more-1024

As well, a recent Globe and Mail article on some of the issues can be found at:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/cutting-edge-land-use-law-fuels-property-rights-debate-in-alberta/article1929467/

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