What: A Panel Discussion: Do Recent Changes to Ontario’s Mining Act Make the Province a Less Competitive Jurisdiction to Explore?
Note: This was the last meeting of the 2012-2013 TGDG season. The meeting was followed by a networking session sponsored by WGM, Goodman’s and TGDG.
Two-Page Info on New Mining Act
Moderator: Lynda Bloom, President, Analytical Solutions
Al Workman, vice-president, Watts, Griffis and McOuat (WGM) Consulting
WGM manages exploration projects on behalf of junior mining companies and provides advice on working responsibly. CSR requirements have been portrayed as imposing little in the way of administrative burden, but in reality the burden on junior explorers can be significant. Stringent standards and guidelines must be established to define the responsibilities of companies and First Nations, and to establish decision-making timetables. A tribunal is also needed to adjudicate in the event that unreasonable demands or delays are experienced.
Ian Brodie-Brown, president & CEO, Aurcrest Gold Inc.
Aucrest took proactive measures several years ago to build business partnerships with local First Nations. Aurcrest, Cyr Drilling and Webequie First Nations (Ring of Fire) created a co-owned drilling company while at Red Lake, the Lac Seul First Nation invested $500,000 in Aurcrest. Consultation will not be sufficient in the future to guarantee that First Nations are fully on board and supportive.
Kate Lyons, partner, Administrative Law, Goodmans LLP
Kate Lyons represents both private and public sector clients in particular where there are disparate public, private and institutional stakeholders. Her focus on evaluation and allocation of environmental risks and costs has involved her with multiple levels of government and sometimes conflicting regulation.
Rob Merwin, Director of the Mining Act Modernization Secretariat, Ontario Ministry of Northern Development and Mines
At the forefront of introducing new regulations for several years, his emphasis has been on building a system of mutual respect and goodwill between mining companies and First Nations, with recognition of the government’s duty to consult.