March 6th, 2024

Houston abandoning Coastal Protection Act, a bad move for democracy

HALIFAX – As the spring sitting of the Legislature continues, laws passed by the legislature, including the Coastal Protection Act, remain stalled without being enacted. Today, the Nova Scotia NDP will bring forward legislation similar to Alberta and Ontario requiring the Attorney General to report on all unproclaimed legislation annually.

“The current conversation around the Coastal Protection Act shows that Nova Scotians care about how our province is run and are upset about the decision to abandon a law passed with all-party support,” said Claudia Chender, Leader of the NSNDP. “The current rules have allowed the Houston government to skirt their responsibility to Nova Scotians to protect coastal communities.”

While it’s often routine to delay proclamation of laws to create regulations, Nova Scotians deserve to know when laws passed by the Legislature are lingering and going unenforced.

“The public and the whole democratic process has been let down by this system that allows laws passed by the legislation to go un-enacted indefinitely,” said NSNDP Caucus Whip Gary Burrill. “It would be pretty simple to have a rule that any piece of legislation that has not come into force by a certain period has to come back to the House of Assembly.”

The NSNDP bill would require the government to bring laws like the Coastal Protection Act back to the legislature to be officially repealed if they no longer plan to enact them.