NEWS RELEASE · 22nd March 2010
Ministry of Attorney General
Bill 4, the Miscellaneous Statutes Amendment Act, 2010, introduced in the legislature today, will affect the following provincial statutes:
Child, Family and Community Service Act - Clarifies that where parents have the financial ability, they remain responsible for contributing to the maintenance of their children when a child is cared for by a relative or someone with an established relationship to the child under the Extended Family Program. A similar arrangement currently applies to children in other out-of-care placements and children in care.
Coroners Act - Under proposed changes, the chief coroner will gain the discretion to forego an inquest into a police in-custody death, if that death is due to natural causes and could not be prevented, is not connected to the care or supervision of the police or is the subject of a public inquiry. Such case-by-case decisions will be reported to the Solicitor General, who could order an inquest if public interest is not satisfied. Such decisions by the chief coroner will also be made public.
Employment Standards Act - Transfers authority for third-party searches of employment standards branch records to the Employment Standards Act from the Financial Administration Act. The $35 fee, in place since 2003, remains the same.
Engineers and Geoscientists Act - Authorizes the council of the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of B.C. (APEGBC) to set annual fees for members. The ability to set members' fees at levels adequate to sustain APEGBC's operations strengthens the association's fiscal reserves and allows it to carry out its mandate to protect the public's interest.
Health Authorities Act - Amends the Health Authorities Act to allow a health authority, if needed and when approved by the Minister of Health Services, to locate a facility or deliver health services within another health authority's boundaries. Approval is case-by-case. Currently, the act only allows a health authority to deliver services within its own geographic area.
Hospital District Act - Updates the act to confirm BC Assessment, rather than the Minister of Health Services, has responsibility for providing annual tax information to hospital district boards.
Music Teachers (Registered) Act - Streamlines administration by enabling the British Columbia Registered Music Teachers' Association to manage its own affairs. Members will be able to ratify bylaws, eliminating the need for the provincial cabinet to approve changes.
Miscellaneous Post-Secondary Acts - Repeals governing legislation for seven private post- secondary institutions that are no longer operating. The repeal will avoid confusion as to their status and safeguard the interests of potential students. The acts are:
* Columbian Methodist College Act
* Whetham College Act
* Vancouver Bible Institute Enabling Act
* Life Bible College Act
* Congregational College of British Columbia Act
* Ryerson College Act
* Westminster Hall Act
Teaching Profession Act - Enables the council of the BC College of Teachers to delegate its authority regarding the determinations of penalty, publication and notification against former members to the discipline committee, streamlining the hearing process. This amendment also clarifies that discipline of former members must be publicly reported and reflected on the Teacher Registry.
Water Act - Changes to the Water Act focus on streamlining and housekeeping amendments to provide for more reliable analysis of groundwater quality. Together, these amendments provide efficiencies, improve effectiveness and enhance client service.