Open letter to MP Ryan Leef:
The omnibus budget bill is first and foremost a disaster for Canadian democracy because it hides so many significant legislative changes away from public and even MP debate.
This shows a cynical attitude by the Conservative government to Canadians who expect our MPs to be able to fully debate and improve bills before they are passed into law.
I am asking you to vote against Bill C-38 and demand that the legislation pieces within it be presented as stand-alone bills for legislative revisions and be debated as such, separately.
Furthermore, how can you stand by, as a person trained in environmental monitoring and enforcement, and see our environmental legislation be damaged by short-term thinking and for only economic reasons?
Instead, you should be trumpeting the Yukon Environmental and Socio-economic Assessment Act and process as a one-window model for Canada, the provinces and the other territories to consider.
It addresses the issue of “timelines” and also considers socio-economic potential effects of project proposals.
Furthermore, you know how important our fishery (salmon especially) is to First Nations and Yukoners.
Without adequate full consideration of fish habitat in the Fisheries Act regulatory regime or YESAA process our struggling fish populations will not have the chance to recover. The work that has been done to rebuild salmon populations will be lost.
The Fisheries Act and the Canadian Environmental Assessment regime took years and much expense to develop, not to mention all the other pieces of legislation (estimated to be 70) that are to be changed.
The Canadian environmental regulatory regime is second to none in the world. Why would you see it reduced to a rubber-stamping mechanism for mega resource development projects?
I and many other Yukoners of all political stripes and walks of life urge you to find other MP colleagues and engage them to vote against this bill.
You have our full support as our representative to take this action.