Yukon premier supports environment law changes in Senate
CBC News Posted: Sep 24, 2014 9:59 AM CT Last Updated: Sep 24, 2014 3:19 PM CT
Yukon Premier Darrell Pasloski spoke in favour of changes to the Yukon Environmental and Socio-economic Assessment Act in the Senate yesterday. (CBC)
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A Senate committee is hearing from Yukoners this week about proposed changes to the territory's environmental assessment process, but some people are warning that Ottawa’s proposed changes could result in a court challenge.
Premier Darrell Pasloski appeared yesterday before the senate committee to support the proposed changes to the Yukon Environmental and Socio-economic Assessment Act, or YESAA.
“Changes to this legislation before you today are essential in order for Yukon to remain a competitive place to do business,” he said.
Pasloski says the changes would make reviews
more timely and efficient.
He’d like to see them passed quickly, before a federal election disrupts parliamentary business.
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“We also concur with Canada's proposed amendment to give the federal minister the ability to issue binding policy direction to the YESAA board in those rare situations when the power is deemed necessary.”
But back in Yukon, Assembly of First Nations Yukon regional chief Mike Smith disagrees with Ottawa and the premier.
“You know the Yukon's interests almost always never line up with First Nations interests.”
Smith says if the amendments pass it will invite another major court case.
The senate committee will hear directly from Yukon First Nations on Thursday.
Yukon New Democrats want the the committee to come to the Yukon to hear from Yukoners.