Dock Management Plan/Land Act/Section7

 

News and Media Reports and Studies Section 7 / DMP Land Act Timeline of the DMP
 

Febrary22/2024

A Win for the People Province Backs Down on Amending the Land Act

Due to an unprecedented public outcry over proposed changes to the Land Act, the province has delayed the legislation amending that Act. Those changes would enable the government to implement and put into place agreements with the 204 BC First Nations pursuant to Section 7 of the Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act. Those agreements, once entered into, have the effect of requiring the government to either obtain prior consent with the Indigenous governing body or establish a joint decision-making agreement. Either way, consent of the Indigenous body would be required.

The Land Act Amendments would allow the government to enter into these agreements with the First Nations concerning all Crown Land in BC, which makes up approximately 95% of the province.

Currently, the government is negotiating a Section 7 agreement with the shíshálh Nation concerning “docks in the swiya.” This announcement merely puts the necessary Land Act Amendments on hold but does not stop these ongoing negotiations.

In a February 21 news release, Nathan Cullen, Minister of Land, Water and Resource Stewardship, said, “Over the past several weeks, I have had the opportunity to discuss proposed amendments to the Land Act with over 650 representatives of stakeholder groups representing tens of thousands of British Columbians, from mining, forestry, oil and gas and clean energy, cattle ranchers, to adventure tourism operators, snowmobilers, hunters and anglers, and many others . . . I’ve also heard that we need to take the time to further engage with people and demonstrate the real benefits of shared decision-making in action. We want to get this right and move forward together.” He concluded: “For that reason, our government has decided not to proceed with proposed amendments to the Land Act.”

We note that PHARA was not included in those discussions Minister Cullen speaks of, notwithstanding that we are the only community we are aware of that is affected by a Section 7 agreement currently being negotiated.

This delay is a win for all those opposed to the province’s ill-thought-out Land Act amendments. In the case of the Sunshine Coast, without those amendments the province cannot continue its implementation of the Section 7 agreement being negotiated in secret between the province and the shíshálh Nation. That agreement would have given the Nation veto power over dock tenure authorizations on the Sunshine Coast.

The province and Nation still plan on revising the Dock Management Plan. Through hundreds of letters, the province has heard loud and clear that they must consult and give fair consideration to the concerns of all stakeholders. The province has said it will publish on March 8 a summary of the concerns expressed through the public engagement process.

Thanks to everyone who helped put pressure on the province to delay the Land Act amendments! Please stay tuned, as the battle to have a say in our dock tenures continues.

PHARA Board


February/2/2024

Global TV Covers the DMP and Land Act Amendments

Interviews with Robin Junger and Sean McAllister (PHARA) in Pender Harbour. 

Click Here


January/29/2024

Should Indigenous Groups Have Control over BC Crown Land Decisions?

 Our Provincial Government is attempting to change our Canadian Constitution by forming a new level of government, unelected First Nations!

Changes are being proposed to the BC Land Act that would give First Nations veto power over all Crown land use decisions, including water, in the province. If passed, the government will no longer have the power to make decisions in the public interest about Crown land. Instead, they are delegating the power to unelected First Nations who will have final say. This unprecedented engagement process was not announced to the general public or the media and has a March 31 deadline for comments. Click here.

PHARA’s legal counsel, McMillan LLP, has published an excellent opinion piece on the engagement process. Click here.

These changes to the land act will affect all British Columbians and add additional layers of bureaucracy to an already overstrained government.


January/14/2024

Province Extends Comment Period for DMP


Your support in challenging the proposed Dock Management Plan amendments has led to a last-minute extension of the comment period until February 16, instead of the original deadline of January 12. We attribute this extension, in part, to the letter addressed to Minister Cullen from our legal counsel at McMillan LLP. This additional time is crucial as we continue to attempt a meeting with the Minister responsible, enabling us to directly express our concerns regarding the poorly thought-out amendments to the DMP. If you haven’t read our letter to Minister Cullen, click here.
If you haven’t yet submitted your comments, there is still an opportunity to do so. Please click here, using Reference No. 2412772, to submit your comments to the province (click View Application Details) to submit your comments to the province. Additionally, ensure you send a copy to board@phara.ca, WLRS.minister@gov.bc.ca, premier@gov.bc.ca, and Simons.MLA@leg.bc.ca.

Many of our members have inquired about the Waterfront Protection Coalition and our association with them. We want to clarify that we wholeheartedly support this parallel group. The Waterfront Protection Coalition operates with a distinct set of resources, a mandate that spans the coast and province, and is actively raising funds for legal and other initiatives.

It’s important to note that PHARA specifically concentrates on the Sunshine Coast, particularly the shíshálh swiya region. Our newly established Sunshine Coast Dock Management Committee comprises approximately 20 representatives, not only from the Pender Harbour area but also from the entire Sunshine Coast, including lakes and islands, such as Nelson and Hardy. These representatives provide updates to their respective members following our meetings.

Our organization has fostered a nearly decade-long relationship with the Sunshine Coast Regional District (SCRD), the Provincial government, and the Nation. PHARA’s primary strategy is to advocate for a pause in the Dock Management Plan (DMP) and for all involved parties to engage in collaborative discussions to find a viable solution. Our focus lies in challenging the DMP on legal grounds, and any funds we raise are strictly allocated for legal fees.
We extend our gratitude to those who have contributed to our legal funds. Although we are unable to thank each of you personally, your support plays a vital role in defeating the amended DMP.
Thank you for your ongoing support. We encourage members to consider contributing to our legal fund. If you can assist, the easiest method is via e-transfer using the following steps:

1. Add PHARA as a new contact (name: PHARA, email: board@phara.ca).
2. Go to “Send Transfers By” and select “email.”
3. For the initial e-transfer, set a security question and answer. (This is a formality; we have auto deposit.)
4. Once PHARA is added, proceed to the “Send via Interac e-Transfer” page.
5. Select your account, specify the amount, and in the Message box note DMP Legal Fund.
6. Check the box confirming PHARA’s auto deposit registration.
7. Click Continue to complete the process.

For larger donations exceeding e-transfer limits, cheques can be sent to PHARA, Box 15, Madeira Park, V0N 2H0

Thank you from your PHARA Board.


 

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