1994 Legislative Session: 3rd Session, 35th Parliament
The following electronic version is for informational purposes only.
The printed version remains the official version.
HONOURABLE ELIZABETH CULL
MINISTER OF FINANCE AND
|1||Grants to local governments and related organizations|
|2||Municipal general grants|
|5||Grants to other bodies|
|6||Consultation with local governments|
|8||Transitional -- regulations|
|9||Transitional -- authority to continue payments under former Acts|
HER MAJESTY, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of the Province of British Columbia, enacts as follows:
1 In each fiscal year of the government, the minister may, in accordance with this Act and the regulations, make
(a) unconditional grants to municipalities and regional districts, and
(b) conditional grants to municipalities, regional districts and prescribed related organizations.
2 (1) Without limiting section 1, the minister must pay out of the consolidated revenue fund in each fiscal year unconditional grants to municipalities in accordance with this section and the regulations.
(2) The total amount of grants that are to be paid under this section for the fiscal year ending March 31, 1995 is $120 million and, for subsequent fiscal years, is the applicable amount calculated under subsections (3) to (5).
(3) The total amount to be paid under this section in a fiscal year is the amount paid in the previous fiscal year increased or decreased, as applicable, by the percentage change in the Provincial real gross domestic product between the calendar year in which the fiscal year for the grants begins and the preceding calendar year, to a maximum increase or decrease of 2%.
(4) As an exception to subsection (3), the amount to be paid under this section in a fiscal year must not exceed the amount paid in the previous fiscal year increased or decreased, as applicable, by the percentage change in government spending between the fiscal year in which the grants are to be paid and the previous fiscal year.
(5) For the purposes of this section,
(a) a change in the Provincial real gross domestic product, whether an increase or decrease, means a change calculated in accordance with the regulations between the Provincial real gross domestic product forecast by the Ministry of Finance and Corporate Relations for one calendar year and the Provincial real gross domestic product forecast by the Ministry of Finance and Corporate Relations for another calendar year, and
(b) a change in government spending, whether an increase or decrease, means a change calculated in accordance with the regulations between government spending as proposed in the Estimates for one fiscal year from government spending proposed in the Estimates for another fiscal year.
3 Without limiting section 1 or 2, the amount of an unconditional grant may be determined on the basis of one or more of the following, as prescribed by regulation:
(a) a fixed amount for each municipality or regional district;
(b) the population of a municipality or regional district;
(c) the total annual expenditures of a municipality or regional district;
(d) the converted value of land and improvements within a municipality or regional district, within the meaning of section 808 of the Municipal Act;
(e) any other prescribed basis.
4 (1) Without limiting section 1, conditional grants may be made to municipalities, regional districts and prescribed related organizations for the following purposes:
(a) reviewing, studying, planning or implementing matters relating to local government planning or growth management;
(b) reviewing, studying, planning, organizing or implementing the establishment or other reorganization of local government, including any change in the functions, structures, boundaries or classifications of one or more municipalities and regional districts;
(c) reviewing, studying, planning, or constructing water supply and distribution facilities, sewage collection and disposal facilities, major municipal highways or other infrastructure;
(d) to share the cost of any underground installation of power, telephone or other overhead transmission lines in municipal areas, agreed to among a municipality, a public utility, including British Columbia Hydro and Power Authority, and the Province.
(2) Subject to approval by Treasury Board, money may be paid out of the consolidated revenue fund to satisfy conditional grant liabilities incurred under this Act.
5 (1) The minister may make conditional grants referred to in section (4) (1) (a) for
(a) the purposes of section 13 of the Islands Trust Act, and
(b) planning purposes under section 27 of the Islands Trust Act, as if the local trust committees and the executive committee acting as a local trust committee were regional districts, with the grants payable to the trust council under that Act for these purposes.
(2) The minister may make conditional grants referred to in section 4 (1) (c) to a greater board as defined in section 943 (1) of the Municipal Act.
6 (1) At least annually, the minister must consult with representatives of the Union of British Columbia Municipalities regarding the administration of grants under this Act.
(2) At least once every 5 years, the consultations under subsection (1) must include a review of unconditional grants under section 2.
7 (1) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations as authorized by section 41 of the Interpretation Act.
(2) Without limiting subsection (1), the Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations as follows:
(a) establishing classes of grants;
(b) establishing the amount or a maximum amount that may be paid for a class of grants;
(c) establishing qualifications for a class of grants;
(d) specifying conditions on which a grant may be paid;
(e) establishing the amount, or a minimum or maximum amount, of a grant;
(f) prescribing the basis on which the amount of a grant is to be determined;
(g) prescribing an organization as a related organization, or a class of organizations as related organizations, for grants of a specified class or grants in relation to a specified purpose;
(h) for the purposes of section 2, prescribing
(i) what is to be considered government spending for the purposes of section 2,
(ii) which forecasts of the Provincial real gross domestic product by the Ministry of Finance and Corporate Relations are to be used for the purposes of section 2, and
(iii) the methods for calculating a percentage change in government spending and Provincial real gross domestic product.
8 (1) A regulation under the Revenue Sharing Act in force immediately before the repeal of that Act remains in force and is deemed to have been made under this Act, so far as it is not inconsistent with this Act, until it is repealed or another regulation is made in its place.
(2) Regulations made under this Act before April 1, 1995 may be made retroactive to any date on or after April 1, 1994.
9 (1) Subject to approval by Treasury Board, money may be paid out of the consolidated revenue fund to satisfy liabilities incurred under one of the following Acts on the basis of an appropriation under the Act before it was repealed:
(a) the Revenue Sharing Act, R.S.B.C. 1979, c. 368;
(b) the Natural Gas Revenue Sharing Act, S.B.C. 1975, c. 51;
(c) the Sewerage Facilities Assistance Act, S.B.C.1974, c. 83;
(d) the Municipal Treatment Plant Assistance Act, S.B.C. 1969, c. 25.
(2) The Revenue Sharing Fund special account is discontinued.
10 Schedule 1 of the Financial Information Act, S.B.C. 1985, c. 8 , is amended by striking out "Revenue Sharing Act;" and by adding "Local Government Grants Act;".
11 Section 12 (9.1) (a) of the Municipal Finance Authority Act, R.S.B.C. 1979, c. 292, is repealed.
12 Section 5 of the Natural Resource Community Fund Act, S.B.C. 1992 , c. 19, is amended by adding "and" at the end of paragraph (c) and by repealing paragraph (d).
13 The Revenue Sharing Act, R.S.B.C. 1979, c. 368, is repealed.
14 This Act is deemed to have come into force on April 1, 1994 and is retroactive to the extent necessary to give it effect on and after that date.
The Local Government Grants Act proposes to replace the Revenue Sharing Act with an Act requiring annual unconditional grants to municipalities and authorizing other grants to local governments and related organizations based on amounts appropriated by an annual Supply Act.
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