YELLOWKNIFE (November 3, 2022) – Today, the Commissioner of the Northwest Territories assented to An Act to Amend the Legislative Assembly and Executive Council Act and An Act to Amend the Elections and Plebiscites Act.
In the final year of a Legislative Assembly, amendments are usually made to the Legislative
Assembly and Executive Council Act to update terms and practices and implement the recommendations of the Independent Commission to Review MLA Compensation and Benefits and an Electoral Boundaries Commission (every second Assembly).
The changes to the Legislative Assembly and Executive Council Act includes the establishment of a new training fund to assist Members in meeting their professional needs and to create awareness and educational materials that can be easily located on the Assembly’s website for the public and potential candidates.
While Members did not support the Electoral Boundaries Commission’s recommendation to adjust boundaries between electoral districts within Yellowknife and Inuvik, they did approve changing the name of the Deh Cho riding to Dehcho for the next election.
As well, the Assembly committed to carry out a ‘full review’ of the integrity complaint process following the October 2021 public inquiry. The Act to Amend the Legislative Assembly and Executive Council Act makes amendments to the Conflict of Interest/Code of Conduct enforcement regime to allow the Integrity Commissioner to investigate complaints and recommend punishments directly to the Legislative Assembly as opposed to only through a public inquiry.
The changes to how complaints against MLAs are handled will start right away. The other changes will start at the beginning of the next Legislative Assembly. A plain language summary of Bill 58, An Act to Amend the Legislative Assembly and Executive Council Act, can be found here.
An Act to Amend the Elections and Plebiscites Act implements proposed changes identified by the Chief Electoral Officer in their report following the 2019 general election as well as the Legislative Assembly’s Standing Committee on Rules and Procedures. Elections NWT will now be able to share information from the voters list with municipalities running elections and the Electoral Boundaries Commission. Sixteen and 17-year-olds will be able to register with Elections NWT and automatically be added to the voters list on their 18th birthday. Emails may now be kept as part of the voters list.
Additional changes can be found in the plain language summary of Bill 59, An Act to Amend the Elections and Plebiscites Act. The changes will be in place for the next general election in 2023.
For more information, contact:
Public Affairs and Communications
Northwest Territories Legislative Assembly