Version of document from 2011-11-29 to 2013-10-08:

Harbour Commissions Act

R.S.C., 1985, c. H-1

An Act to provide for the establishment of harbour commissions

Short Title

Marginal note:Short title

 This Act may be cited as the Harbour Commissions Act.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 1.

Interpretation

Marginal note:Definitions

 In this Act,

Commission

commission

Commission means a harbour Commission established pursuant to section 5; (commission)

harbour

Version anglaise seulement

harbour, in relation to a Commission, means the harbour for which that Commission is established; (Version anglaise seulement)

member

commissaire

member means a member of a Commission; (commissaire)

Minister

ministre

Minister means the Minister of Transport; (ministre)

vessel

navire

vessel includes any ship, boat, barge, raft, dredge, floating elevator, scow, sea-plane or other floating craft. (navire)

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 2.

National Ports Policy

Marginal note:Objective of the ports policy for Canada

  •  (1) It is hereby declared that the objective of the national ports policy for Canada is to create a port system that

    • (a) is an effective instrument of support for the achievement of Canadian international trade objectives and of national, regional and local economic and social objectives;

    • (b) is efficient;

    • (c) provides accessibility and equitable treatment in the movement of goods and persons to users of Canadian ports;

    • (d) provides harbour Commissions with a high degree of autonomy for the management and operation of the ports for which they are established, consistent with the responsibility of the Minister to ensure the integrity and efficiency of the national ports system and the optimum deployment of resources; and

    • (e) is coordinated with other marine activities and surface and air transportation systems.

  • Marginal note:Idem

    (2) It is further declared that achievement of the objective of the national ports policy requires the establishment, at ports at which there is demonstrated local interest in the management thereof and that are expected to be financially self-sufficient, of harbour Commissions each of which is comprised of persons who have proven experience and capacity applicable to the management and operation of the port and who are for the most part residents in the vicinity thereof.

  • 1980-81-82-83, c. 121, s. 23.

Marginal note:Measures to achieve declared objective

 It is the responsibility of the Minister to undertake the necessary measures to achieve the objective of the national ports policy.

  • 1980-81-82-83, c. 121, s. 23.

Establishment of Harbour Commissions

Marginal note:Establishment of Commissions

  •  (1) The Governor in Council may, on the recommendation of the Minister, by proclamation, establish a harbour Commission for any harbour or port of Canada if the Governor in Council is of the opinion that the establishment of a Commission for the harbour or port will enable the improvement of the administration thereof.

  • Marginal note:Commissions to be bodies corporate

    (2) Every Commission established pursuant to this Act is a body corporate.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 3;
  • 1980-81-82-83, c. 121, s. 24.

Marginal note:Contents of proclamation

  •  (1) The proclamation establishing a harbour Commission shall

    • (a) define the limits of the harbour for which the Commission is established;

    • (b) state the corporate name of the Commission; and

    • (c) fix the number of members of the Commission, which shall be not less than three nor more than five, except that in the case of the Nanaimo Harbour Commission the number of members shall be not less than five.

  • Marginal note:Alteration of harbour limits, etc.

    (2) The Governor in Council may, by proclamation, alter the limits of a harbour for which a Commission has been established pursuant to this Act, change the name of a Commission and increase or decrease the number of its members, but not so as to decrease the number below three or increase it above five.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 4;
  • 1973-74, c. 26, s. 1.

Members and Staff

Marginal note:Appointment of members of Commission

  •  (1) Subject to this section and sections 8 and 9, a majority of the members of a Commission shall be appointed by the Governor in Council and the remainder shall be appointed as follows:

    • (a) where one municipality only adjoins the harbour for which the Commission is established, by the council of that municipality;

    • (b) where two municipalities only adjoin the harbour for which the Commission is established and the remainder consists of two members, one member by the council of each municipality;

    • (c) where the number of municipalities adjoining the harbour for which the Commission is established exceeds the number of members in the remainder, by agreement among the councils of all of the adjoining municipalities; or

    • (d) in the case of the Nanaimo Harbour Commission, one member by the Nanaimo City Council and one member by the Nanaimo Regional District Board.

  • Marginal note:Exceptional cases

    (2) Where the Governor in Council determines that a municipality adjoining the harbour for which a Commission is established does not provide normal municipal services, the member or members of the Commission to be appointed as provided in subsection (1) by or by agreement with the council of that municipality shall instead be appointed by or by agreement with such of the following bodies as the Governor in Council may designate:

    • (a) the council of that municipality;

    • (b) any organization or group of organizations representative of local interests in the vicinity of the harbour for which the Commission is established; or

    • (c) the lieutenant governor in council of the province in which the harbour is located.

  • Marginal note:Idem

    (3) Where there is no municipality adjoining the harbour for which a Commission is established, the remainder of the members of the Commission shall be appointed by such of the bodies described in paragraph (2)(b) or (c) as the Governor in Council may designate.

  • Marginal note:Time limit for appointment

    (4) Where a member of a Commission to be appointed in the manner prescribed in subsection (1), (2) or (3) is not appointed within sixty days from the day on which the Commission is established under this Act or from the day on which the office becomes vacant, that member may be appointed by the Governor in Council.

  • Marginal note:Presumption

    (5) A member of a Commission appointed by the Governor in Council pursuant to subsection (4) is deemed, for the purposes of Part X of the Financial Administration Act, not to have been appointed by the Governor in Council.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 5;
  • 1973-74, c. 26, s. 2;
  • 1984, c. 31, s. 14.

Marginal note:Tenure of office

 Each member of a Commission shall hold office during pleasure for a term not exceeding three years and at the expiration of that member’s term of office may be re-appointed.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 5.

Marginal note:Persons ineligible to be members

 No member of the council of a municipality adjoining a harbour for which a Commission is established and no member of the legislature of the province in which is located any harbour for which a Commission is established is eligible to be a member of that Commission.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 5.

Marginal note:Oath of office

  •  (1) Each member of a Commission shall, before entering on the duties of that member’s office, take and subscribe an oath in the following form:

    I, ......, solemnly swear that I will truly and impartially and to the best of my skill and understanding execute and perform the duties of member of the ............ Harbour Commission. So help me God.

  • Marginal note:Who may administer oaths

    (2) The oath described in subsection (1) may be administered by a member of the Commission previously sworn, the Chief Executive Officer of the Commission or a justice of the peace.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 6.

Marginal note:Chairman

  •  (1) The members of a Commission shall elect one of their number as chairman.

  • Marginal note:Quorum

    (2) A majority of the members constitutes a quorum of the Commission and a vacancy in the membership of the Commission does not impair the right of the remaining members to act.

  • Marginal note:Remuneration of members

    (3) There may be paid to each member of a Commission out of the revenues of the Commission such remuneration as may be fixed by the Governor in Council.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 7.

Marginal note:Appointment of officers and employees

  •  (1) The Commission may appoint a Chief Executive Officer and employ such other officers and employees as it deems necessary to carry out the purposes and functions of the Commission under this Act.

  • Marginal note:Salary of Chief Executive Officer

    (2) The Chief Executive Officer shall be paid out of the revenues of the Commission such salary as may be fixed by the Commission with the approval of the Minister.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 8.

General Powers

Marginal note:Jurisdiction within harbour

 Subject to this Act, a Commission shall regulate and control the use and development of all land, buildings and other property within the limits of the harbour, and all docks, wharfs and equipment erected or used in connection therewith.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 9.

Marginal note:Powers to purchase, construct, sell, etc.

 A Commission may with the approval of the Minister, where the amount involved exceeds such amount as the Minister may fix, and without the approval of the Minister, in any other case, purchase or otherwise acquire land within the limits of the harbour or in the immediate vicinity thereof, and purchase or construct, and operate and maintain, docks, wharfs, buildings or other structures and machinery or other equipment for use in the operation and development of the harbour and may sell or lease the land, structures or equipment.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 10.

Marginal note:Administration of Crown and municipal property

  •  (1) A Commission may administer and develop on behalf of Her Majesty in right of Canada or any province, or on behalf of any municipality adjoining the harbour, any property owned by Her Majesty in right of Canada or that province or owned by that municipality, as the case may be, within the limits of the harbour or in the immediate vicinity thereof.

  • Marginal note:Leasing of land administered for Crown

    (2) Notwithstanding anything in this Act, a Commission shall not lease any land administered by it on behalf of Her Majesty in right of Canada

    • (a) for any period of twenty years or less without the approval of the Minister; and

    • (b) for any period of more than twenty years without the approval of the Governor in Council.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 11.

Marginal note:Construction of rail facilities

  •  (1) Subject to any other Act of Parliament and any regulations made thereunder, a Commission may

    • (a) construct, purchase or lease and operate or maintain railways within the boundaries of the harbour on lands owned by or within the jurisdiction of the Commission;

    • (b) enter into agreements with any company for the maintenance of the railways referred to in paragraph (a) and for their operation, in a manner that will afford all railway companies whose lines reach the harbour the same facilities for traffic as those enjoyed by that company; and

    • (c) enter into arrangements with railway, navigation, air or road transport companies for the facilitating of traffic to, from or within the limits of the harbour.

  • Marginal note:Commission not railway company

    (2) Nothing in subsection (1) shall be deemed to constitute a Commission a railway company.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 12.

By-laws

Marginal note:By-laws

  •  (1) A Commission may, with the approval of the Governor in Council, make by-laws respecting the management of its internal affairs and the duties of its officers and employees, and for the management and control of the harbour and the works and property therein under its jurisdiction, including by-laws respecting

    • (a) the regulation of the navigation and use of the harbour by vessels, including the mooring and berthing thereof and the discharging and loading of cargo;

    • (b) the regulation of all works and operations within the harbour;

    • (c) the regulation or prohibition of the construction of channels, docks, wharfs, piers, buildings or other structures within the limits of the harbour and the maintenance thereof, and the excavation, removal or deposit of material or any other action that is likely to affect in any way the docks, piers, wharfs or channels of the harbour or the lands adjacent thereto;

    • (d) the construction, operation and maintenance of elevators, pipes, conduits and other works or appliances on docks, piers or wharfs within the limits of the harbour, and of pipes or lines of wire or cable across or under the bed of the harbour;

    • (e) the regulation or prohibition of the erection of towers or poles, and the stringing or laying of wires or cables within the harbour;

    • (f) the transportation, handling or storing within the harbour of explosives or other substances that, in the opinion of the Commission, constitute or are likely to constitute a danger or hazard to life or property;

    • (g) the maintenance of order and the protection of property within the harbour;

    • (h) the punishment that may be imposed on summary conviction for the contravention of any by-law, which punishment shall not exceed a fine of twenty-five thousand dollars or imprisonment for a term of six months or both; and

    • (i) the regulation of all persons and vessels coming into or using the harbour, including the imposition and collection of rates to be paid on such vessels and on goods landed from or shipped on board such vessels, or transhipped by water within the harbour.

  • Marginal note:Notice to municipalities

    (2) Every by-law shall, at least ten days before its submission to the Governor in Council for approval, be served on the clerk of each municipality adjoining the harbour for which the Commission is established.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 13;
  • 1980-81-82-83, c. 121, s. 25.

Borrowing Powers

Marginal note:Borrowing powers

 For the purpose of defraying the expenses of constructing or improving wharfs, structures and other works within the limits of the harbour, a Commission may, on such terms and conditions as the Governor in Council may approve,

  • (a) borrow money in Canada or elsewhere; and

  • (b) issue debentures for sums of not less than one hundred dollars, payable in not more than forty years.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 14.

Finances

Marginal note:Charges against revenues

  •  (1) The revenues of a Commission shall be charged with

    • (a) the costs of collecting those revenues;

    • (b) the expenses, including depreciation, incurred by the Commission in operating and maintaining the harbour and works and property owned, controlled, administered or managed by the Commission under this Act;

    • (c) the interest and other charges incurred in connection with debentures issued or money borrowed by the Commission under this Act; and

    • (d) any other expenses lawfully incurred by the Commission in carrying out its duties and functions under this Act.

  • Marginal note:Amounts payable to Receiver General

    (2) After providing for

    • (a) the charges specified in subsection (1), other than depreciation, and

    • (b) the appropriation to the funded reserves of the Commission of such amounts as may be approved by the Minister,

    the revenues of a Commission remaining at the end of each fiscal year of that Commission shall be paid by the Commission to the Receiver General.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 15.

Marginal note:Powers to invest

 A Commission may, with the approval of the Minister of Finance, invest in bonds or other obligations of Her Majesty in right of Canada or any province or of any municipality in Canada any moneys in its reserves or any moneys not immediately required for the purpose of the Commission.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 16.

Marginal note:Accounts

  •  (1) A Commission shall

    • (a) keep accounts of all moneys borrowed, received and expended by it under this Act, and

    • (b) account therefor to the Minister within three months after the end of each fiscal year of the Commission,

    in such form and manner as the Minister may direct.

  • Marginal note:Inspection of accounts

    (2) All books, accounts, records and documents of the Commission shall be at all reasonable times open for inspection by the Minister or by a person authorized by the Minister for that purpose, or, in the case of a municipality having a substantial interest in the harbour, as determined by the Minister, by the auditors of that municipality.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 17.

Marginal note:Moneys obtained from use of Crown property

 Where a Commission is authorized by the Governor in Council to develop, administer or lease any property owned by Her Majesty in right of Canada within the limits of or in the vicinity of a harbour, all moneys paid to the Commission in respect of that property shall, notwithstanding the Financial Administration Act, form part of the revenues of the Commission.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 18.

Expropriation

Marginal note:Expropriation

  •  (1) A Commission may, with the approval of the Governor in Council and in accordance with the Expropriation Act, expropriate an interest in land for the purposes of this Act where it is unable to agree with the owner respecting the price to be paid for the interest in land.

  • Marginal note:Notice to appropriate minister

    (2) Where the Governor in Council approves an expropriation under subsection (1), the Commission shall so advise the appropriate minister in relation to Part I of the Expropriation Act.

  • Marginal note:Expropriation Act

    (3) An interest in land the expropriation of which has been approved by the Governor in Council under subsection (1) is deemed to be, for the purposes of the Expropriation Act, an interest in land or an immovable real right that, in the opinion of the appropriate minister in relation to Part I of that Act, is required for a public work or other public purpose, and a reference to the Crown in that Act shall be construed as a reference to the Commission.

  • Marginal note:Charges for services

    (4) The appropriate minister in relation to Part I of the Expropriation Act may make regulations prescribing fees or charges to be paid by a Commission in respect of an expropriation referred to in subsection (1), and rates of interest payable in respect of those fees and charges.

  • Marginal note:Debt due to Her Majesty

    (5) The fees or charges are a debt due to Her Majesty in right of Canada by the Commission, and shall bear interest at the prescribed rate from the date they are payable.

  • Marginal note:Security

    (6) The Minister may require the Commission to provide security, in an amount determined by the Minister and subject to any terms and conditions that the Minister may specify, for the payment of any fees or charges that are or may become payable under this section.

  • R.S., 1985, c. H-1, s. 23;
  • 1996, c. 10, s. 230;
  • 2011, c. 21, s. 163.

Payment of Rates

Marginal note:Payment of rates

 The rates imposed by by-law on the cargo of a vessel shall be paid by the master or person in charge of the vessel, without prejudice to any recourse the master or that person may have by law against any other person for the recovery of the amounts so paid, but the Commission may demand and recover the rates from the owners, consignees, agents or shippers of the cargo.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 20.

Seizure

Marginal note:Seizure of vessels or goods

  •  (1) Subject to subsection (2), where

    • (a) any amount is due to a Commission for rates in respect of a vessel or goods, or

    • (b) the owner or person in charge of a vessel or goods has in respect of that vessel or those goods contravened the provisions of any by-law,

    a Commission may seize that vessel or those goods.

  • Marginal note:Court order for seizure

    (2) A seizure made under subsection (1) may be made only on the order of

    • (a) in the Province of New Brunswick, Manitoba, Saskatchewan or Alberta, the Court of Queen’s Bench or any provincial court judge having jurisdiction in the area in which the vessel or goods are located;

    • (a.1) in the Province of Ontario, any judge of the Ontario Court (General Division) having jurisdiction in the area in which the vessel or goods are located;

    • (b) in the Province of Prince Edward Island or Newfoundland, the Trial Division of the Supreme Court, or any provincial court judge having jurisdiction in the area in which the vessel or goods are located; or

    • (b.1) [Repealed, 1992, c. 51, s. 51]

    • (c) in the Provinces of Nova Scotia and British Columbia, the Supreme Court or any judge of the provincial court having jurisdiction in the area in which the vessel or goods are located.

  • R.S., 1985, c. H-1, s. 25;
  • R.S., 1985, c. 27 (1st Supp.), s. 203, c. 27 (2nd Supp.), s. 10;
  • 1990, c. 16, s. 11, c. 17, s. 22;
  • 1992, c. 51, s. 51.

Marginal note:Detention of vessels or goods

 Any vessel or goods seized pursuant to section 25 may be detained until there have been paid in full

  • (a) all amounts due and all penalties incurred in respect thereof;

  • (b) all proper and reasonable costs and charges incurred in the seizure and detention; and

  • (c) all court costs in respect thereof.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 22.

Marginal note:Sale of detained goods

 Where, in the opinion of the Chief Executive Officer of a Commission, goods seized by the Commission pursuant to section 25 will rot, spoil or otherwise perish, the Chief Executive Officer may order the sale of those goods in such manner and for such price as he may determine and the proceeds of that sale shall be credited toward payment of the amounts described in section 26.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 23.

Evidence

Marginal note:Evidence of by-laws

  •  (1) A copy of a by-law of a Commission under its seal and purporting to be signed by a member or the Chief Executive Officer of the Commission is evidence of that by-law in all courts.

  • Marginal note:Evidence of harbour limits

    (2) A Commission may erect marks or signs to indicate the limits of its harbour and every mark or sign so erected is evidence of the limits of that harbour in all courts.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 24.

General

Marginal note:Pecuniary dealings

 A Commission shall not enter into any transaction of a pecuniary nature directly or indirectly with any member of the Commission.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 25.

Marginal note:Limitation period

 Proceedings in respect of any contravention of a provision in any by-law made under this Act may be initiated at any time within but not later than one year after the time when the subject-matter of the proceedings arose.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 26.

Marginal note:Winding-up of a Commission

  •  (1) The Governor in Council may order any Commission established pursuant to this Act to wind up its affairs and may by proclamation dissolve any Commission in respect of which such an order has been made.

  • Marginal note:Publication in Canada Gazette

    (2) An order or proclamation made pursuant to subsection (1) shall become effective only on the expiration of ninety days from the date of its publication in the Canada Gazette.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 27.

Marginal note:Development of Crown lands

 The Governor in Council may authorize a Commission to administer and develop on behalf of Her Majesty in right of Canada any property owned by Her Majesty in right of Canada within the limits of or in the vicinity of the harbour on such terms and conditions as the Governor in Council may determine.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 28.

Marginal note:Navigable Waters Protection Act

 Any work undertaken by or on behalf of the Commission affecting the use of any navigable waters is subject to the Navigable Waters Protection Act.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 29.

Marginal note:Interim application of certain enactments

 Notwithstanding anything in the Public Harbours and Port Facilities Act, where that Act would apply to any harbour but for the establishment pursuant to this Act of a Commission for that harbour, that Act continues to apply to that harbour until the day on which any by-laws made by the Commission under section 17 of this Act become effective.

  • R.S., c. H-1, s. 31.
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