Tuesday, 2 May 2017

A Rural Community is not "another"layer of government.

I disagree with the citizens of the YRC Project area who choose to accuse the steering committee of trying to foist a third level of government on our communities.  This is not so, in my opinion. 

Think back to what we all learned in grade school social studies classes. Or just Google ‘Canadian government’ or ‘levels of government in Canada’ and see what comes up on the web.  I did that and will share one site that I found (see the italics at the end of this page).  

Admittedly, you will see that the municipal level of government (or a Rural Community level of government in our case) comes last when it comes to control of services that are offered to residents but, look at the services that are covered by municipalities throughout Canada: 

·                    parks
·                    public transportation
·                    collection of garbage and recycling
·                    water and sewer services
·                    fire prevention
·                    roads and sidewalks
·                    licensing and control of pets

Here in New Brunswick, three of the seven services listed (the ones that are bold and underlined) are indeed provided by our Local Service Districts under the supervision of the Minister of the Department of Environment and Local Government.  A LSD might also have a local park that is paid for by the residents via their LSD property taxes. Water and sewer services (bold only in my list) are for the most part paid for by individual property owners in a Local Service District but there are provincial regulations applied to them.   In a rural subdivision,  if lots are smaller than one acre in size, the provincial government regulates the building and maintenance of sewage systems but their operations are under control of the locals.   There are rural plans for LSDs with associated zoning regulations.  

What I am trying to point out is that we have always had a third level of government in control of the provision of services to our LSD communities.  Its nothing new.  The real questions are; how good is it?  Is it fulfilling your needs?  Could it be more efficient? Can it be developed to undertake additional important services?  Could it serve to introduce our youth to the ways and responsibilities of government.  Should it be the way we move ahead with the proper development of our local areas?  Should we not continue to explore whether or not a Rural Community is a good fit for our area as compared with the layer of government that we have as LSDs?   

Ken Peck 

Canada’s three levels of government

Canada is a constitutional monarchy. In this system, the Queen or King of Canada is the head of state, while the Prime Minister is the head of government. The functions of the monarch are generally carried out by her representative, the Governor General (federal) and the Lieutenant-Governor (provincial). These duties include promoting Canadian sovereignty, serving as Commander-in-Chief, presentation of orders, decorations, medals and awards, and others.
The head of government is the Prime Minister. The three main levels of government are federal, provincial or territorial, and municipal. Each level has different areas of responsibility depending on geography and types of services:

Federal

This level creates laws and manages program and services that affect the whole country. The seat of the federal government is in Ottawa, the nation’s capital. It is concerned with:
·         national defence
·         foreign affairs
·         employment insurance
·         money
·         banking
·         federal taxes
·         the post office
·         shipping
·         railways
·         telephones
·         pipelines
·         Aboriginal lands and rights
·         copyright law
·         criminal law
The federal government is made up of Members of Parliament (MPs) from every province or territory in Canada. The political party that elects the most MPs forms the federal government and their leader becomes the Prime Minister.

Provincial

This level of government is responsible for issues that affect the province or territory. These are matters such as:
·         provincial taxes
·         hospitals
·         prisons
·         education
·         marriage
·         property and civil rights
·         rules of the road
·         age of majority
The provincial government is made up of the Members of Legislative Assembly (MLAs). MLAs may also be called Members of the Provincial Parliament or MPPs (Ontario), Members of the House of Assembly or MHAs (Newfoundland and Nova Scotia) or Members of the National Assembly or NHAs (Quebec). These are elected officials that represent a geographical area of the province called a riding. The political party with the most MPPs forms the provincial government. The head is called the Premier.

Municipal

The municipal government is receives its power from the provincial government. It deals with issues concerning the community such as:
·         city parks
·         public transportation
·         collection of garbage and recycling
·         water and sewer services
·         fire prevention
·         city roads and sidewalks
·         licensing and control of pets
The municipal government is headed by a mayor. In First Nations communities, band councils are similar to municipal governments. The members elect the band council which makes decisions that affect the local community.


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