Inuvialuit Final Agreement Annual Report of the Implementation Coordinating Committee: April 1, 2009 to March 31, 2010
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- Abbreviations and Acronyms
- Overview and Background
- IFA Implementation Coordinating Committee
2009-2010 Reporting and 2010-2011 Implementation Priorities
- 4.1 - Canadian North Update
- 4.2 - Outstanding Land Exchanges
- 4.3 - Comprehensive Land Claims Evaluation
- 4.4 - Economic Measures
- 4.5 - IFA Amendments
- 4.6 - Arbitrations
- 4.7 - Inuit Relations Secretariat
- 4.8 - Regulatory Reform
- 4.9 - Environmental Clean-Ups
- 4.10 - Annex "R" Reservations
- 4.11 - Appointments
- 4.12 - Canada Food Mail Program
- 4.13 - Auditor General Recommendations
- 4.14 - Federal Government Procurement
1. Abbreviations and Acronyms
- Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada
- Comprehensive Land Claim Agreement
- Department of National Defence
- Environmental Impact Screening Committee
- Fisheries Joint Management Committee
- Government of the Northwest Territories
- Hunter and Trapper Committee
- Implementation Coordinating Committee
- Inuvialuit Final Agreement
- Inuvialuit Game Council
- Inuvialuit Land Administration
- Inuvialuit Regional Corporation
- Inuit Relations Secretariat
- Inuvialuit Settlement Region
- Non-Insured Health Benefits
- Northwest Territories
- Government of Yukon
2. Overview and Background
In recent years, the inclusion of an implementation plan and the establishment of an Implementation Committee have been key components of all comprehensive land claims agreements (CLCAs). When the Inuvialuit Final Agreement (IFA) was signed in 1984, an Implementation Plan was not a required component.
In 1994, however, following several years of claim implementation, Inuvialuit Regional Corporation (IRC) and Canada agreed that it would be beneficial to form an Implementation Coordinating Committee (ICC) to address ongoing issues and concerns related to the implementation of the IFA. Following considerable internal review, an Inuvialuit Final Agreement Implementation Coordinating Committee was established on May 11, 1999.
The ICC is comprised of senior representatives from the IRC, the Inuvialuit Game Council (IGC), the Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT), the Government of Yukon (YG), and the Government of Canada. The ICC monitors the ongoing obligations of the Parties pursuant to the IFA and resolves issues arising with respect to the implementation of the IFA.
The ICC has agreed to reach decisions unanimously among the relevant Parties and serves as a forum where the Parties can raise issues and voice their concerns regarding the implementation of the IFA.
During the April 1, 2009 to March 31, 2010 reporting period, the ICC met twice, on April 15 and 16 and on October 8, 2009. The ICC considered issues that had been identified by one or more Parties and had been agreed to by the other Parties as appropriate for consideration and action through the ICC forum. This annual report provides an overview of the issues considered by the ICC during this reporting period, the extent to which they were resolved during the period, and the future actions to be taken on those issues that are still outstanding.
2.1 - Summary of Agreement Provisions
- Land Ownership: The IFA provides the Inuvialuit with fee simple absolute title to approximately 91,000 square kilometres (approximately 35,000 square miles) of land in the Western Arctic region of the Northwest Territories (NWT). This area includes about 13,000 square kilometres (approximately 5,000 square miles) on which the Inuvialuit have title to surface and subsurface rights. The Inuvialuit Settlement Region (ISR) includes the North Slope of Yukon (including Herschel Island), the eastern half of the Beaufort Sea and the associated mainland, part of the Arctic Ocean, Banks Island, much of the western part of Victoria Island, and some of the Parry Islands.
- Eligibility and Enrolment: An enrolment authority composed of one federal government and two Inuvialuit representatives was initially established to enrol those who were entitled to be registered as beneficiaries of the IFA. Ongoing enrolment is now a responsibility of the IRC.
- Financial Compensation: Under the provisions of the IFA, the Inuvialuit received a total of $152 million over 14 years. As well, the IFA provided for two additional payments made in 1984, a one-time payment of $7.5 million to a fund to assist the Inuvialuit in social development, and a one-time payment of $10 million to the Economic Enhancement Fund.
- Ongoing Implementation Funding: Financial support was provided by Canada in 2008-2009 to support ongoing implementation obligations by federal and territorial government departments and agencies, and the ongoing work of the IFA implementing bodies.
- Economic Measures: Section 16 of the IFA addresses economic development in the ISR. Its broad objectives are to support Inuvialuit participation in the northern Canadian economy and their integration into Canadian society through the development of an adequate level of economic selfreliance and the establishment of a solid economic base. Since 1984, the Economic Enhancement Fund and compensation payments have helped the Inuvialuit become more actively involved in the local, regional, and national economy. This has involved long-term investments that are providing a solid base for future development.
Inuvialuit Corporations: Established under Section 6.(1) of the IFA, IRC holds the overall responsibility for managing the affairs of its corporate subsidiaries and achieving the goals outlined in the IFA. Its ongoing functions and formal obligations include:
- Implementing the land claim agreement.
- Fulfilling the role of institutional representative of the Inuvialuit.
- Being the parent corporation to and monitor of, the Inuvialuit Corporate Group.
Inuvialuit Land Corporation owns the Inuvialuit lands received under the IFA. IRC administers Inuvialuit lands through its division, the Inuvialuit Land Administration (ILA), and holds responsibility for matters related to the management, supervision, and administration of such lands. Inuvialuit Development Corporation, Inuvialuit Petroleum Corporation, and Inuvialuit Investment Corporation carry out business activities and invest settlement funds on behalf of the Inuvialuit.
- Wildlife and Environmental Co-management: The Inuvialuit have extensive wildlife harvesting rights in the ISR. They also have a mechanism for settling their claims against developers for actual harvest losses and for compensation or remedial measures as required.
The IFA established structures to ensure Inuvialuit participation in wildlife management, conservation, and environmental protection in the ISR. These structures include community-based Inuvialuit hunter and trapper committees (HTCs) and the IGC, which consists of members from each HTC.
The IFA also established five joint bodies that have equal government and Inuvialuit representation:
- The Environmental Impact Screening Committee (EISC) determines whether proposed developments require detailed environmental impact assessments.
- The Environmental Impact Review Board carries out public reviews of development proposals deemed necessary by the EISC.
- The Fisheries Joint Management Committee (FJMC) advises the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans on matters relating to fisheries and marine mammals in the ISR.
- The Wildlife Management Advisory Council – NWT advises governments and other appropriate bodies on wildlife management and conservation matters in the NWT portion of the settlement region.
- The Wildlife Management Advisory Council – North Slope advises governments and other appropriate bodies on wildlife management and conservation matters on the Yukon North Slope, including Herschel Island.
- Arbitration Board: Arbitration Board: Established under Section 18 of the IFA, the Arbitration Board has the jurisdiction to arbitrate any difference as to the meaning, interpretation, application, or implementation of the IFA between the Inuvialuit and industry or the Government of Canada.
|Implementing Body||Funding in 2009-2010|
|Inuvialuit Regional Corporation||$40,541|
|Government of the Northwest Territories||$3,726,889|
|Inuvialuit Arbitration Board||Funding not requested|
3. IFA Implementation Coordinating Committee
3.1 - Inuvialuit Regional Corporation
The IRC remains committed to fulfilling its ongoing responsibilities to implement the IFA. During 2009-2010, the IRC was represented on the ICC by Nellie Cournoyea (Chair and CEO).
3.2 - Inuvialuit Game Council
The IGC represents the collective Inuvialuit interest in wildlife. The IGC appoints Inuvialuit members for all joint government/Inuvialuit bodies having an interest in wildlife, has authority for matters related to harvesting rights, and an advisory role in wildlife management and conservation matters. During the 2009-2010, the IGC was represented by Frank Pokiak (Chair).
3.3 - Government of the Northwest Territories
The Department of Aboriginal Affairs and Intergovernmental Relations is responsible for coordinating the GNWT’s implementation activities under the IFA, managing the allocation of implementation funds received from the Government of Canada, and representing the GNWT on the ICC. During 2009-2010, the GNWT was represented on the ICC by Scott Alexander, Director of Implementation.
3.4 - Government of Yukon
The Yukon Secretariat, in the Claims Implementation and Aboriginal Affairs Section of the Department of Environment, is responsible for coordinating the YG’s implementation activities under the IFA, managing the allocation of implementation funds received from the Government of Canada, and representing the YG on the ICC. Ed van Randen (Director, Policy and Planning Branch) represented the YG on the ICC.
3.5 - Government of Canada
The Government of Canada is represented on the ICC by the Department of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (AANDC) Implementation Branch. The Implementation Branch serves as a liaison on IFA implementation issues for co-management boards, the Inuvialuit, territorial governments, and other federal departments. Stephen Gagnon (Director General, Implementation Branch, AANDC) represented the Government of Canada on the ICC in 2009-2010.
- More information on the Government of Canada and its departments, programs, and services can be found online.
4. 2009–2010 Reporting and 2010–2011 Implementation Priorities
Annual implementation goals for the ICC can be suggested by any Parties, and are approved by the ICC. This chapter details the issues considered by the ICC during this reporting period, the extent to which they were resolved, and the future actions to be taken on those issues that are still outstanding.
4.1 - Canadian North Update
Although Canadian North is a business listed on the Inuvialuit Business List, the private company that provides travel services to Canada did not have the airline on its list of carriers supplying service to the North. As a result, Canadian North may be missing business opportunities from the Government of Canada.
Canada distributed a communiqué throughout the government to clarify the listing of Canadian North on Government services lists. Canadian North is recognized as a discount carrier and an Aboriginal owned business.
Canada will continue to raise awareness and encourage federal government employees to utilize Inuvialuit businesses and services.
4.2 - Outstanding Land Exchanges
Pingo Exchange Agreement
Pursuant to Section 7.(72) of the IFA, Canada and the Inuvialuit have signed an agreement for land to be granted to the Inuvialuit in exchange for the Pingo Canadian Landmark. The National Historic Site is located adjacent to Tuktoyaktuk.
The land exchange issue has moved ahead. The Pingo Land Exchange has been signed off by AANDC’s Deputy Minister and the IRC received the signed document. The survey field work has been completed and is in the final stages before being registered.
With the signing of the Pingo Exchange Agreement, the necessary documents needed to transfer the land to the Inuvialuit will be finalized.
Municipal Infrastructure on Inuvialuit-Owned Land
The occupation and use of Inuvialuit lands by community governments for municipal infrastructure purposes have been an issue since the signing of the IFA. Garbage dumps, sewage lagoons, water intake sites, and related access roads are located on private Inuvialuit lands. A land transfer is one solution to this long-standing issue. In 2008-2009, the IRC and GNWT concluded negotiations for the purchase of the lands in question.
The surveys of all the municipal parcels included in the Municipal Land Purchase Agreement were completed.
The transfer of the municipal parcels will be finalized. Once the surveys are registered, the transfer documents will be prepared.
Airport Land Exchange
An outstanding arbitration issue with respect to the IFA has been the acquisition of Inuvialuit lands being used for Airport purposes, which was an obligation under the Arctic B&C Airport Transfer Agreement between Canada and the GNWT. Canada and the Inuvialuit concluded an agreement that enabled these lands in three Inuvialuit communities to be transferred to the GNWT.
The Airport Land Exchange Agreement was approved and signed by Canada and the IRC. All of the surveys have been completed.
Canada (represented by Transport Canada and AANDC), the IRC, and the GNWT are to determine the best method for executing the land transfers.
4.3 - Comprehensive Land Claims Evaluation
CLCAs have been in effect for ten years or more in certain parts of Canada and they have reached the stage where their impacts on the people, communities, and regions can be evaluated. In 2008-2009, Canada proceeded with the Claims Review process through consultations with claimant groups and with territorial governments.
The Inuvialuit expressed concern that their input to the Claims Review process did not carry through to the final product and that the review had a narrower scope than the Inuvialuit felt was necessary. IRC felt that the review focussed too much on such technical matters as land transfers and too little on socio-economic issues. Canada suggested that the ICC conduct further work into the areas not covered by the claims evaluation.
The ICC will likely establish an independent action plan as a 2010-2011 priority that will focus on the socioeconomic benefits of the land claim for beneficiaries.
4.4 - Economic Measures
In 2002, pursuant to Section 16.(3) of the IFA, a report was provided to AANDC, GNWT, and IRC on the public review of economic measures within the IFA. In response to one of the shortcomings identified in the report, the three parties agreed to undertake a fundamental project-specific economic planning and implementation process for all Inuvialuit communities. The purpose was to identify new business opportunities that would create new employment opportunities. A full-time Economic Measure Coordinator staff position was established in the IRC offices that would be guided by an AANDC/GNWT/IRC Economic Measures Working Group.
Following extensive consultation at regional and community levels, a short list of suggested community-driven economic development projects was developed for each Inuvialuit community by the coordinator. However, upon review by the Working Group it was recognized that the majority of the initiatives had been tried unsuccessfully in the past, were one-time only community improvement initiatives, or were initiatives that required a level of capacity not readily available in smaller communities. The Working Group reconsidered the initiative noting, that in the absence of new non-renewable resourcebased projects in the area, the majority of economic development ventures that could be supported in the smaller communities had already been undertaken by individual entrepreneurs. The Working Group confirmed the need to consider alternative measures to advance economic development in the smaller communities. An economic analysis of one outlying community was suggested to provide solid economic baseline data about economic sustainability and need. This, in turn, would help guide government and other party programs that address the level of identified need. A comprehensive listing of all natural assets in a community and surrounding area — ice, wind, snow, willows, seals, etc. — also was suggested to assess the potential for economically viable products. A similar exercise in Northern Québec resulted in the harvesting seaweed for beauty products.
The Economic Measures Working Group will consider these and other possible initiatives in an effort to identify viable economic opportunities in the Inuvialuit communities.
4.5 - IFA Amendments
Following amendments to the IFA in 2005, it was discovered that Section 18 of the IFA contained a number of inaccurate references to subsections that had not been amended to reflect the renumbering caused by the addition of a new subsection. As well, other provisions of the IFA contained inaccurate references, inconsistent formatting, and other clerical errors. During 2008-2009, all Parties provided input on the provisions within the 2005 consolidated version of the IFA that are believed to contain inaccuracies. A list of these perceived inaccuracies was compiled by AANDC.
The Parties expressed interest in locating an original signed copy of the IFA. Using an initial list of "errors" prepared by GNWT as a starting point, the Parties used an unedited and unamended version of the IFA to begin a review and to develop an authoritative version of the IFA that can be put forward for "approval" as the final official version.
AANDC will continue to search for an original signed copy of the IFA within Government records. If unsuccessful, a list of changes will be completed and circulated for review and approval. Steps will then be taken to acknowledge the 2005 consolidated version of the IFA as the authorized version of the Agreement.
4.6 - Arbitrations
Substantial progress was achieved on several outstanding arbitration issues with respect to the implementation of the IFA.
Canada and the Inuvialuit have finalized the Pingo Exchange Agreement and the Airport Lands Exchange Agreement. In both cases, the survey fieldwork was completed and the final transfer arrangements were undertaken.
Progress was made with respect to royalty payments related to the Ikhil gas field located northwest of Inuvik. Canada and the IRC are up-to-date on payments.
An issue arose with respect to an individual who is challenging the criteria for enrolment as a beneficiary under the IFA. As a preliminary matter, the IFA, while authorizing arbitrations by individuals in such circumstances, does not provide for nominations to a panel by individuals. With the concurrence of the Chairperson of the Arbitration Board and the agreement of the parties, it was agreed that the matter would be heard by the Chairperson of the Arbitration Board.
As a separate matter, access to Non-Insured Health Benefits (NIHB) by persons of Inuvialuit ancestry who did not meet residency requirements for enrolment as a beneficiary was raised. IRC sought help from Canada in addressing this matter so that Inuvialuit living outside the ISR who are not eligible for enrolment could still receive NIHB as Aboriginal Canadians.
The land exchanges will be finalized when the IRC receives the final transfer documents for the Pingo Canadian Landmark and the IRC and GNWT conclude the transfer for airport lands. The IRC and Canada will work together on regularizing Ikhil royalty payments. Health Canada and AANDC will consider options to address the NIHB concern.
4.7 - Inuit Relations Secretariat
The Inuit Relations Secretariat (IRS) was established by Canada in 2005 with a mandate to strengthen federal relationships with Inuit organizations, raise awareness of Inuit issues within the Government of Canada, and to advocate for the inclusion of Inuit issues in federal policy development and program implementation. Generally, Inuvialuit interests are advanced either directly or through Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, however, the IRC requested intervention and support from the IRS to address two specific federal policy issues: the inequitable level of core funding provided to Inuit representative organizations versus that provided to representative First Nations organizations, and the creation of an Inuit photo ID program.
Canada informed the Parties that the authorities for Regional and Tribal Councils and Band core funding under the Indian Government Support Program has been extend past March 2010 and that it will continue to be extended each year until decided otherwise. Core funding for Inuit organizations will be considered in the authority renewal process.
The IRC provided the Parties with the results of a door-to-door survey within Inuvialuit communities and a mail survey to IFA beneficiaries elsewhere in Canada. The survey confirmed the need for a general ID card within the Inuvialuit communities and raised concerns about ID with respect to access to NIHB by Inuvialuit in southern Canada.
The IRS, the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade and IRC will consider measures to support easier access to passport quality photos within the Inuvialuit communities.
IRC will work with Health Canada to determine options to improve access to NIHB for beneficiaries living in southern Canada. An additional survey of beneficiaries to obtain further detail on the specific type and geographic location of NIHB concerns may be considered.
IRC will work with GNWT to identify how to increase the level of access to GNWT General ID cards within the Inuvialuit communities.
4.8 - Regulatory Reform
The 2008 Neil McCrank report entitled Road to Improvement contained recommendations in the area of northern regulatory regimes. Concern had been expressed about the way the systems operated, the multitude of jurisdictions, and the length of time needed for regulatory approval. No concerns had been expressed in relation to the regulatory processes in the ISR. As a result, the McCrank report concentrated on the Mackenzie Valley and not the ISR. No recommendations in the McCrank report were directed specifically to the ISR.
In response to the report, Canada has worked to achieve consistency in land use and water regulations among northern land claims and has initially included the ISR in its action plan. However, the IRC believes Canada should not include the ISR because current regulatory processes are working well in the ISR and any changes would result in difficulties related to revisions to the IFA. The IRC wants the ISR to be dealt with on its own merits and not as a result of shortcomings of regimes in the other land claim regions.
Canada has been moving forward with the longterm action plan in response to the McCrank report. Development of the action plan on regulatory reform will consider Board capacity, the NWT Surface Rights Act, further changes to the Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act, the scheduled review of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, changes to the NWT Waters Regulations, and Land Use and quarry regulations.
Budget 2010 will commit funds to support regulatory regime reforms, and will ensure that the environment is protected while respecting CLCA obligations.
Canada’s action plan is expected to be finalized by June 2010.
4.9 - Environmental Clean-Ups
The Contaminants and Remediation Division within AANDC continues to work on several sites within the ISR, with continual engagement with the Inuvialuit with respect to the clean-ups.
The 2009 environmental clean-up season involved six sites within the ISR. Clean up at the Atkinson Point site was completed in 2008 and an inspection in 2009 confirmed the remediation work has been successful. De-mobilization of the Johnson Point site is near complete with the exception of equipment that could not be picked up by barge because of ice. Similarly, the Victoria Island Muskox mine site has been decontaminated though some equipment could not be removed by helicopter. Contents of the Grand Roy site are scheduled to be flown out by the summer of 2010. An environmental assessment of the BAR-C site was completed last year and was reviewed by AANDC and Imperial Oil. AANDC is committed to working closely with ILA to investigate the site.
More sites are slated for clean up in 2010-2011.
4.10 - Annex "R" Reservations
Pursuant to Section 7.(1) of the IFA, title to lands selected by the Inuvialuit is subject to certain existing surface rights as listed in Annex "R" of the IFA. The Government of Canada is responsible for 20 of the 21 sites listed in the annex. Canada has released its reservation interest on six sites in favour of the Inuvialuit.
No additional Annex "R" sites were released by Canada in 2009-2010. The remaining sites are still, in use or are being monitored. Some of the sites used by the Department of National Defence (DND) have landfills. Reservation interest on these Annex "R" reservations is under discussion while the matter of liability for the landfills is discussed between Canada and Inuvialuit.
Three Coast Guard Annex "R" sites will be processed in 2010-2011. AANDC, DND, and the ILA will continue discussions to finalize the issue of responsibility associated with landfill sites. The remaining Annex "R" sites will remain in use or will continue to be monitored.
4.11 - Appointments
The timeliness of Board appointments, specifically the length of time required to process Federal Ministerial appointments is a concern for all parties. Timely appointments help to avoid quorum issues within the various Boards created pursuant to the IFA.
A number of Board appointments were made during the reporting period. New representatives for Canada and Yukon were appointed on the EISC and the IGC submitted to the GNWT a nominee for the Council’s Chair position. The IGC alternate on the Wildlife Management Advisory Council (North Slope) was reappointed and a new IGC member was nominated to the Aboriginal Traditional Knowledge subcommittee of the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada. Canada’s member on the FJMC will serve as the Acting Chair while the Committee decides on a new Chair and a new alternate member for the Inuvialuit was also named to the Committee. Additionally, a new representative for Yukon was appointed to the Arbitration Board in 2009.
Additional appoints will be required for various Boards, Committees, and Councils in the upcoming year. Canada will investigate the process for filling the Industry vacancy on the Arbitration Board. Research into the criterion set out in the IFA regarding Industry in the IFA (Section 18.(7)) will be undertaken in 2010-2011.
4.12 - Canada Food Mail Program
The Food Mail Program aims to provide nutritious food at a reasonable price to people in remote communities. AANDC has contracted Canada Post to administer the program and Canada Post has entered into contracts with other parties to transport the food mail. Examples of extreme pricing and other concerns have given rise to questions about the effectiveness of the program.
In response to concerns raised about the Food Mail Program, there have been extensive and widespread consultations and discussions about reforming the program.
The 2010 federal budget listed improvements to the Food Mail Program as a priority. Consultations regarding the Program will continue across the North towards an end result of a more efficient and effective means of satisfying the program objectives.
4.13 - Auditor General Recommendations
In October 2007, the Auditor General of Canada submitted a report to the House of Commons that outlined the findings of a review of Canada’s actions to meet its obligations under the IFA. The review provided observations and recommendations in several specific areas including land exchanges, federal contracting, economic planning, a strategic approach to implementation, and the development and maintenance of performance indicators. The Auditor General’s report also included the federal response to each recommendation. Throughout 2008-2009, significant progress was made in advancing each of the Auditor General’s recommendations.
Canada continued to work on the recommendations of the Auditor General with the remaining recommendations being ongoing implementation issues.
Canada will be reporting to the Auditor General in the spring of 2010 that Canada has nearly completed its work on the recommendations.
4.14 - Federal Government Procurement
Canada continues to examine its contracting processes to identify potential barriers that may hinder access to federal contracts by firms located in land claim areas. In addition, information sessions were provided to contracting officers and project managers who supervise contracts where the deliverable of a good, service or construction is delivered into a land claim agreement area. These sessions addressed the contracting obligations of various land claim agreements, including the IFA.
In accordance with Contracting Policy Notice 2008-4 which came into affect in April 2009, federal departments are required to report contractual data where a contract has been awarded in a land claim area. More information is available on AANDC’s website.
The Parties were informed that the IRC will receive relevant procurement data once it has been compiled. The data will provide accurate information about the share of contracts being awarded to Inuvialuit businesses. An e-learning tool is being updated by Canada that will help with reporting. IRC indicated that it is important that the contracting preferences outlined in Section 16.(8)(b) of the IFA be included in the e-learning tool. IRC is concerned that certain requests for proposals and contract tendering processes do not properly meet requirements outlined in the IFA.
The IFA contracting guidelines will be incorporated into the update of the e-learning tool.
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