Bevington criticizes feds over board appointments

The Western Arctic MP is questioning the federal government after the minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development failed to comply with recommendations made in two federal reports.

The 2008 McCrank Report entitled Road to Improvement: The Review of the Regulatory Systems Across the North, and the 2010 Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Report, Northerners’ Perspectives for Prosperity, both recommend timely board appointments to the numerous regulatory boards across the Northwest Territories.

“Why won’t the government respect the importance of timely action on these appointments,” said Bevington in a release sent out by his office last week.

One example he provided was the Gwichin Renewable Resources Board which, for the last year, has only had one third the number of regular members as it should.

“The GRRB has only four regular members out of 12 since 2010, which means this board has had no quorum and cannot function or make legal binding decisions,” he said.

Eleven of the Northwest Territory’s 13 Regulatory and Land Claim boards currently have vacancies and over the next six months, many of the currently held positions on the boards will be up for renewal or replacement.

“The Harper government continues to fail in its responsibilities to ensure these boards can operate fully and effectively. Their inaction is fulfilling their own arguments that the regulatory process is flawed,” said Bevington.

“This government needs to be proactive on this issue, and these appointments need top be dealt with in a timely fashion.”