Evidence of meeting #34 for Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development in the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament’s site, as are the minutes.) The winning word was lands.

A recording is available from Parliament.

On the agenda

MPs speaking

Also speaking

4:20 p.m.

Director of Operations, Mississauga First Nation

James Cada

One of the issues is that we are in negotiations in two other areas, what we call the ILA highway agreement and also our flooded lands.

As I said earlier in my presentation, we've always used the four processes that we do have in order to augment each other and not fight each other. Yes, those are options, and there are always available options. I think it's a last-ditch option if you have to go to court.

We've been in negotiations on the ILA highway agreement since roughly 1999, and I think we're at draft number 19. There are options there. We tread lightly. We didn't even want to go to dispute resolution under the FNLMA process, simply for the fact that we want to get on with the management of our lands and we want to continue to move forward. So we're going to do it the best way we can; hopefully we can resolve it through the negotiation process.

4:25 p.m.

NDP

Jonathan Genest-Jourdain Manicouagan, QC

So the judicial process might dampen the relationships you have with federal agencies.

4:25 p.m.

Director of Operations, Mississauga First Nation

James Cada

Yes, and I think that's the thing. If you look at the Specific Claims Tribunal Act, it's basically in there. Negotiations are off the table. We have to tread lightly in Mississauga because we do have these two claims that are going on, and as far as we're concerned, they should be finalized.

The three-year term for the flooded lands expires next August. As I said, we have to look at and weigh all our options, and hopefully we can resolve this through negotiations.

Again, our biggest concern is going to be the implementation side of things. This is something the membership has to vote on. If the membership says no, we're not going to wait another 15 years; obviously, then, we would have no other alternatives.

4:25 p.m.

NDP

Jonathan Genest-Jourdain Manicouagan, QC

Thank you.

How much time do I have left?

4:25 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair Chris Warkentin

Twenty seconds.

4:25 p.m.

NDP

Jonathan Genest-Jourdain Manicouagan, QC

I would like to share it with Ms. Hughes, but…

4:25 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair Chris Warkentin

We'll have more time for Ms. Hughes to ask questions down the road.

We'll turn to Mr. Clarke now for five minutes.

May 3rd, 2012 / 4:25 p.m.

Conservative

Rob Clarke Desnethé—Missinippi—Churchill River, SK

Thank you, Mr. Chair.

And I thank the witnesses for coming here.

I'm reviewing your Mississauga First Nation 2010 land resources annual report. You stated that the lands resources program is working on the matrimonial and real property law environmental management agreement components of your land code.

I'm hoping you can describe the process of developing your land code right now, if we have enough time.

4:25 p.m.

Director of Operations, Mississauga First Nation

James Cada

You may mean implementing, because our land code is passed.

Right now we're going to be proceeding to step three of the environmental management process, which is basically developing the laws. I think we have everything in place. The other thing we're looking at now is the registration of documents and looking at the leasing of the lands.

It's something we've been trying to apply as a policy over, I would say, the last five years, since we had a draft plan code. We used it as a policy guide for anything we do; when it was finally passed, we had something to follow.

4:25 p.m.

Conservative

Rob Clarke Desnethé—Missinippi—Churchill River, SK

How is your plan handling the matrimonial property issues that are coming forward very soon? Also, for instance, the environmental management....

4:25 p.m.

Director of Operations, Mississauga First Nation

James Cada

The MRP are at their third or fourth draft, I think, and hopefully that's their final one. We were hoping they were going to have it tabled May 17, which is our annual health fair, where we do have a lot of people, but it may be put off for another month or so. That basically is moving forward.

4:25 p.m.

Lands and Resources Manager, Mississauga First Nation

Keith Sayers

To add to that, we have established under our land code a land resources committee that developed the MRP to be implemented under our land code. However, we're still trying to work out some of the legal side of things in that regard. It just keeps going back and forth to our legal adviser to make sure all our concerns are dealt with in an appropriate fashion.

Hopefully we do have the final draft in a stage now...and as Jim mentioned, we're hoping to have it targeted for a community session in a couple of weeks. But due to other things developing, we'll probably push that back another month or two, just to make sure we have everything in place for the MRP.

4:30 p.m.

Conservative

Rob Clarke Desnethé—Missinippi—Churchill River, SK

How much time do I have, Mr. Chair?

4:30 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair Chris Warkentin

You have about two minutes.

4:30 p.m.

Conservative

Rob Clarke Desnethé—Missinippi—Churchill River, SK

Julie, hopefully you can help add some more clarification. What are the issues, points, or problems the community is facing in regard to the MRP? We hear it going back and forth for legal counsel. What are some of the factors in play here?