BILL 20

An Act to Amend the Provincial Court Act

Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick, enacts as follows:

1 Section 22.02 of the Provincial Court Act, chapter P-21 of the Revised Statutes, 1973, is amended

(a) in subsection (5)

(i) by adding after paragraph (a) the following:

(a.1) judges or former judges, or other members or former members of the judiciary in Canada;

(ii) in paragraph (c) by striking out "specified in Parts I and IV of the First Schedule" and substituting "specified in the First Schedule";

(b) by repealing subsection (7) and substituting the following:

22.02(7) Where there is a vacancy on the Commission, the Lieutenant-Governor in Council may appoint a person for the remainder of the unexpired term in the same manner that the person to be replaced was appointed.

2 Section 22.03 of the Act is amended

(a) in subsection (1)

(i) in subparagraph (a)(i) by striking out "salaries" and substituting "salaries and other amounts";

(ii) by repealing paragraph (b) and substituting the following:

(b) provide to the Minister a report with recommendations regarding the appropriate salaries and other amounts to be paid to judges and the appropriate pension, vacation and sick leave benefits to be provided to them.

(b) by adding after subsection (3) the following:

22.03(3.1) The Commission shall publish in one or more newspapers having a general circulation in the Province a notice in both official languages

(a) stating the name of the Commission,

(b) stating that the inquiry is in progress and the purpose of the inquiry,

(c) inviting the public to make oral or written submissions in relation to the inquiry,

(d) stating what action is to be taken by people who wish to make submissions, and

(e) providing additional information if the Commission so decides.

(c) by repealing subsection (5) and substituting the following:

22.03(5) Within ninety days after January 1, 2001, and within ninety days after the first day of January every third year thereafter, the Commission shall conduct the inquiry and submit the report referred to in subsection (1).

(d) in subsection (6)

(i) in paragraph (a) by striking out "salaries" and substituting "remuneration";

(ii) by adding after paragraph (a) the following:

(a.1) the remuneration of other members of the judiciary in Canada as well as the factors which may justify the existence of differences between the remuneration of judges and that of other members of the judiciary in Canada,

(iii) by repealing paragraph (b) and substituting the following:

(b) economic fairness, including the remuneration of other persons paid out of the Consolidated Fund,

3 Section 22.04 of the Act is repealed and the following is substituted:

22.04 The Commission may at any time after the delivery of its report under subsection 22.03(5), at the written request of the Minister or the chief judge, inquire into and make recommendations with respect to the matters referred to in paragraph 22.03(1)(a), and the procedure outlined in this Part shall apply with respect to the request, except that the inquiry and report shall be delivered within ninety days after the chairperson of the Commission confirms in writing that it will act on the request.

4 Section 22.05 of the Act is amended by striking out "thirty" and substituting "ninety".

5 Section 22.06 of the Act is repealed and the following is substituted:

22.06(1) The recommendations of the Commission in the report

(a) may be accepted, in which case they shall be implemented with due diligence, or

(b) may be rejected in whole or in part, in which case the Minister shall advise the Commission and the Legislative Assembly as to the recommendations or the parts of the recommendations that are not being implemented.

22.06(2) The recommendations are deemed to have been accepted if the Minister does not advise the Commission and the Legislative Assembly, on tabling the report as required by section 22.05, that the recommendations have been rejected in whole or in part.