Second Session, 45th General Assembly
54 Elizabeth II, 2005
AN ACT TO AMEND THE AQUACULTURE ACT
Received and Read the First Time
HONOURABLE TREVOR TAYLOR
Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture
Ordered to be printed by the Honourable House of Assembly
Clause 1 of the Bill would repeal and replace the definitions of "aquaculture", "department", "minister" and "person" in section 2 of the Aquaculture Act.
Clause 2 of the Bill would repeal and replace section 4 of the Act to clarify application and licensing procedures and to clarify the activities that may be carried out at an aquaculture site for which a licence has been suspended. This clause also adds a proposed section 4.1 to the Act respecting shore fastened mooring systems.
Clause 3 of the Bill would amend section 6 of the Act to allow a class of persons to be appointed as inspectors and to establish rules respecting the operations of a licensee whose licence has been suspended.
Clause 4 of the Bill would add a proposed section 6.1 to the Act prohibiting certain actions against inspectors, employees and the Crown with respect to activities lawfully carried out under the Act.
Clauses 5 and 6 of the Bill would correct statutory references made in sections 8 and 9 of the Act.
Clause 7 of the Bill would repeal the offence section 13 of the Act.
Clause 8 of the Bill would repeal and replace section 14 of the Act with new sections 14 and 15 respecting offences and penalties under the Act.
AN ACT TO AMEND THE AQUACULTURE ACT
1. S.2 Amdt.
2. S.4 R&S
3. S.6 Amdt.
4. S.6.1 Added
5. S.8 Amdt.
6. S.9 Amdt.
7. S.13 Rep.
8. S.14 R&S
Be it enacted by the Lieutenant-Governor and House of Assembly in Legislative Session convened, as follows:
RSNL1990 cA-13 as amended
1. (1) Paragraph 2(a) of the Aquaculture Act is repealed and the following substituted:
(a) "aquaculture" means the farming of fish, molluscs, crustaceans, aquatic plants and other aquatic organisms with an intervention in the rearing process to enhance production by regular stocking, feeding, and protection from predation and includes fallowing and processes to mitigate environmental degradation and the placement of necessary gear and equipment;
(2) Paragraph 2(e) of the Act is repealed and the following substituted:
(e) "department" means the department presided over by the minister;
(3) Paragraphs 2(h), (i) and (j) of the Act are repealed and the following substituted:
(h) "minister" means the minister appointed under the Executive Council Act to administer this Act;
(i) "person" includes a partnership, association and a co-operative society registered under the Co-operatives Act;
2. Section 4 of the Act is repealed and the following substituted:
4. (1) A person shall not carry on aquaculture without an aquaculture licence for each site where aquaculture is carried on.
(2) A person who intends to carry on aquaculture shall apply to the minister, in writing, for an aquaculture licence for each site at which that person proposes to carry on aquaculture.
(3) An application made under subsection (2) shall include the information that the minister may require for each
(a) site; and
(b) species intended to be cultivated.
(4) An aquaculture licence shall
(a) contain a description of the site on which aquaculture may be conducted under the licence;
(b) specify the species of aquatic plants or animals that may be cultivated;
(c) include the date on which the aquaculture licence expires;
(d) specify the fee or rent payable to the Crown in respect of the licence;
(e) contain terms and conditions relating to access to a site, optimal resource utilization, health and safety and the environment;
(f) state that aquaculture shall be conducted under the licence with diligence, in a reasonable manner and in accordance with good husbandry practices; and
(g) specify those other terms and conditions that the minister may determine are necessary for the conduct of aquaculture by the licensee at the proposed aquaculture site;
(5) Where the land that is described in an aquaculture licence as the site on which aquaculture may be carried on is held by the licensee under a lease or other right of occupancy, the term of that licence shall not extend beyond the term of the lease or other right of occupancy.
(6) The minister may
(a) incorporate into an aquaculture licence a plan relating to
(i) health, safety and environmental matters, and
(ii) resource utilization and sustainable development;
(b) impose standards relating to the use, stocking, investment in or production of an aquaculture facility;
(c) make provision for access by contiguous landowners through a site;
(d) require records to be kept and information and documents to be provided that the minister considers advisable;
(e) specify the source and strain, and require approval in advance of the source and strain, of all seed and stock to be cultivated;
(f) impose limits on the intensity with which aquaculture is conducted and organisms are concentrated at a site;
(g) specify measures to be taken to prevent the escape of aquatic animals and the development and spread of disease and parasites and to minimize the risk of damage to the environment or other aquaculture facilities;
(h) specify measures to be taken to minimize risk to other aquaculture facilities; and
(i) incorporate whatever other terms may be necessary to carry out the purpose of this Act.
(7) The minister shall not grant an aquaculture licence unless
(a) the proposed licensee owns, leases or otherwise has a right to occupy the parcel of land comprising the site at which the proposed licensee intends to carry on aquaculture; and
(b) Part X of the Environmental Protection Act has been complied with and an approval required by that Part has been given.
(8) Where an aquaculture site or facility or an activity at that site or facility is
(a) varied or intended to be varied to an extent that is not contemplated by the aquaculture licence issued for that site or facility; or
(b) purchased by a person who is not the licensee for that site or facility,
an application for an aquaculture licence for that site or facility shall be made under subsection (2).
(9) Notwithstanding subsection (8), the minister may vary or amend an existing aquaculture licence.
(10) The minister may suspend an aquaculture licence upon breach of a term, condition or provision of that licence, this Act or the regulations.
(11) Where the minister suspends an aquaculture licence under subsection (10), the licensee shall not harvest or remove aquatic plants or animals to or from the aquaculture site for which the aquaculture licence was suspended.
(12) A licensee who operates an aquaculture facility while his or her aquaculture licence is suspended is guilty of an offence.
(13) Notwithstanding subsections (11) and (12) a licensee shall maintain a site and aquaculture plants and animals through good husbandry practices while the aquaculture licence for that site is suspended.
(14) A suspension of an aquaculture licence under this section continues until the minister is satisfied that the breach causing the suspension is no longer continuing.
(15) The minister may cancel an aquaculture licence where a breach causing a suspension under subsection (10) has not been corrected within a reasonable time, for repeated breaches or if the licensee stops owning or holding a lease or right of occupancy for the site.
(16) An aquaculture licence or a certified copy of that licence shall be presented to an aquaculture inspector upon request or where this is not possible, a licensee or another person responsible for the aquaculture facility for which the request was made shall present the requested licence or certified copy to the aquaculture inspector not later than 24 hours following the time when the request was made.
(17) Where a person does not renew an aquaculture licence or where an aquaculture licence is cancelled under this Act, the person who held the last valid aquaculture licence for a site shall remove from that site all aquaculture gear and shall restore that site to its natural state.
4.1 (1) The minister may establish criteria for shore fastened mooring systems at aquaculture facilities and aquaculture sites.
(2) Where, in the opinion of the minister or of an aquaculture inspector a shore fastened mooring system poses a hazard to
(a) public safety;
(b) persons using an aquaculture site; or
(c) persons travelling upon land, ice, snow or water that is a part of or adjacent to that site,
the minister or aquaculture inspector may
(d) release, sever, untie or otherwise remove that shore fastened mooring system; or
(e) direct, in writing, a person to release, sever, untie or otherwise remove that shore fastened mooring system.
3. (1) Subsection 6(1) of the Act is repealed and the following substituted:
6. (1) The minister may designate a person or a class of persons to be aquaculture inspectors for the purposes of this Act.
(2) Section 6 of the Act is amended by adding immediately after subsection (6) the following:
(6.1) Where the minister suspends an aquaculture licence under subsection (6), the licensee shall not harvest or remove aquatic plants or animals to or from the aquaculture site for which the aquaculture licence was suspended.
(6.2) A licensee who operates an aquaculture facility while his or her aquaculture licence is suspended under subsection (6) is guilty of an offence.
(6.3) Notwithstanding subsections (6.1) and (6.2) a licensee shall maintain a site and aquaculture plants and animals at that site through good husbandry practices while the aquaculture licence for that site is suspended.
4. The Act is amended by adding immediately after section 6 the following:
6.1 (1) The minister, an aquaculture inspector or an employee of the department or other person authorized under this Act is not personally liable in an action or a proceeding for or in respect of an act or thing done or omitted by him or her in good faith in the exercise or purported exercise of his or her duties or powers under this Act or for costs in connection with an action or proceeding.
(2) A person is not entitled to compensation from the government of the province for a loss or damages resulting as a consequence of a direction made or action taken under subsection 4.1(2).
5. Subsections 8(3) and (4) of the Act are amended by deleting the words "Environmental Assessment Act" wherever they occur and substituting the words "Part X of the Environmental Protection Act".
6. Subsection 9(2) of the Act is amended by deleting the words "the Environmental Assessment Act" and substituting the words "Part X of the Environmental Protection Act".
7. Section 13 of the Act is repealed.
8. Section 14 of the Act is repealed and the following substituted:
14. A person who
(a) contravenes a provision of this Act or regulations made under this Act;
(b) contravenes a term or condition attached to an aquaculture licence issued under this Act or regulations made under this Act;
(c) contravenes an approval of the minister under section 8;
(d) fails to comply with a directive issued under this Act or regulations made under this Act; and
(e) knowingly provides false or misleading information under a requirement under this Act or the regulations to provide information or knowingly does not provide information as required under this Act or the regulations,
is guilty of an offence.
15. (1) A person found guilty of an offence under this Act is liable on summary conviction
(a) for a first offence, to a fine not exceeding $5000 or, in default of payment, to imprisonment for a term of not more than 6 months or to both the fine and imprisonment; and
(b) for a subsequent offence, to a fine of not less than $5000 and not more than $10,000 or, in default of payment, to imprisonment for a term of not more than 12 months or to both the fine and imprisonment.
(2) A continuance for a day or a part of a day of a contravention of this Act or a regulation made under this Act constitutes a separate offence.
(3) For the purposes of paragraph (1)(b), a person shall be considered to have committed a subsequent offence where that person is convicted of an offence under this Act within 2 years of being convicted of a first offence under this Act.
©Earl G. Tucker, Queen's Printer