Governance

The Government of the Northwest Territories has made
39 commitments
under this theme.
14
Fulfilled
25
In Progress
0
Planning
  • Commitment Progress Markers
    • Fulfilled
    • In Progress
    • Planning
  • Milestone Progress Markers
    • Fulfilled
    • In Progress
    • Planning
  • Commitment
    • 2016
    • 2017
    • 2018
    • 2019
Collaborating and fostering government-to-government relationships with Aboriginal governments.
 
5.1.1
Consistent with the policy of Respect, Recognition & Responsibility, we will invite any regional or community Aboriginal governments that are not yet a party to one, to strengthen their intergovernmental relations with the GNWT through the negotiation of an intergovernmental memorandum-of-understanding.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.1.1 – Consistent with the policy of Respect, Recognition & Responsibility, we will invite any regional or community Indigenous governments that are not yet a party to one, to strengthen their intergovernmental relations with the GNWT through the negotiation of an intergovernmental memorandum-of-understanding.

In 2012, the GNWT developed a formal approach to engaging with Indigenous governments.  Respect, Recognition and Responsibility: The Government of the Northwest Territories’ Approach to Engaging with Aboriginal Governments highlights principles of engagement with Indigenous governments that include:

  • Recognition of rights;
  • Building respectful relationships; and
  • Responsible and flexible government relationships.

Working cooperatively with Indigenous governments to formalize intergovernmental relationships with the GNWT through an Intergovernmental MOU is an important part of the GNWT’s approach.

The GNWT is committed to building and maintaining mutually respectful government-to-government relationships with Indigenous governments, through the signing of intergovernmental Memoranda-of-Understanding (MOU).

The GNWT has formalized working relationships through the establishment of intergovernmental MOUs with the Tłı̨cho Government, the Gwich’in Tribal Council, the Northwest Territory Métis Nation, the Akaitcho Territory Dene First Nations, the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation, the Sahtu Secretariat Incorporated, the Salt River First Nation and, most recently, the Kátł’odeeche First Nation.

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.1.2 – We will consult with Indigenous governments to complete the next phase of regulation making under the Wildlife Act.
  • Commitment 5.1.3 – We will work in partnership with Indigenous governments to explore the design and launch of a training program for First Nations governments with municipal-like responsibilities in order to help improve the governance and management capacity of those governments.
  • Commitment 5.1.4 – We will work to resolve outstanding land, resource and self-government agreements with the Akaitcho, Dehcho, NWT Metis Nation, Acho Dene Koe and the Government of Canada during the term of our government, and advocate that particular focus in our negotiations be placed on land quantum.
  • Commitment 5.1.5 – We will provide funding to Indigenous community governments and work with communities to develop wellness plans that meet local needs and priorities.
  • Commitment 5.1.7 – We will continue to support the Intergovernmental Council towards implementation of the vision of cooperative and collaborative management of lands and resources, as set out in the Lands and Resources Devolution Agreement.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Draft MOU with the Kátł’odeeche First Nation
Sign MOU with Kátł’odeeche First Nation
Invite ADK and Dehcho to negotiate MOUs
Continue invitation to Aboriginal govts not yet party to MOUs
 
5.1.2
We will consult with Aboriginal governments to complete the next phase of regulation making under the Wildlife Act.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.1.2 – We will consult with Aboriginal governments to complete the next phase of regulation making under the Wildlife Act.

The Wildlife Act was developed through an inclusive and collaborative drafting process, involving a Wildlife Act Working Group with representatives from the GNWT, Aboriginal governments and renewable resource boards and their legal counsel. The Wildlife Act and associated regulations needed to bring the Act into force came into force in November 2014. Additional draft regulations (Phase 2 regulations) to implement new tools under the Wildlife Act and to address ongoing needs for wildlife management were developed using the same collaborative process. The Phase 2 regulations are awaiting Cabinet approval to initiate formal consultation and engagement sessions (milestones 1, 2 and 3).

Finalize regulation metes and bounds updates to ensure all Wildlife Act regulations compliant with land claim areas
Complete drafting of Wildlife Act regulations
Enact Wildlife Act Regulations
 
5.1.3
We will work in partnership with Aboriginal governments to explore the design and launch of a training program for First Nations governments with municipal-like responsibilities in order to help improve the governance and management capacity of those governments .
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.1.3 – We will work in partnership with Aboriginal governments to explore the design and launch of a training program for First Nations governments with municipal-like responsibilities in order to help improve the governance and management capacity of those governments.

Background:

The Department of Municipal and Community Affairs (MACA) is working collaboratively with Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC) to design, develop and deliver training courses and resources to assist Aboriginal governments with municipal-like roles and responsibilities with their governance capacity (Milestone 1).

This initiative, along with the resources and training events, will enhance the competencies of First Nations governments, councilors, and staff. The online governance workshops will build the capacity of elected officials and the online staff courses will build the capacity of staff to perform their community government jobs (Milestone 3). Distance learning events will relate to community governance as well as community government occupations. Band managers and staff will benefit from the new available training courses and online delivery approach. Online delivery has the potential to save community governments considerable monies as their staff will no longer have to travel to participate in training to gain necessary knowledge and skills.

In collaboration with Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC) we now have available both online and in the traditional classroom format the following modules (Milestone 2 &4):

  • Governance, the Indian Act and Council Operations
  • A Comparison of  NWT First Nation and Municipal Governments
  • Working Together: For Elected Leaders of First Nation Councils
  • Planning: The Successful Way Forward
  • Financial Responsibilities and Reporting for First Nation Councils
  • Legal Responsibilities and Avoiding Conflict

A proposal from MACA has been submitted to INAC requesting further financial assistance to continue its capacity building work. MACA will work with INAC to develop protocols that will define roles and responsibilities related to designated authorities to strengthen accountability (Milestone 5).

Related Mandate Commitments:

Commitment 2.3.2 – We will offer online delivery of community government training curriculum to build capacity for careers that focus on community governance.

Links to Other Government Activities:

Department of Aboriginal Affairs and Intergovernmental Relations

Federal Engagement Strategy

Aboriginal Engagement Strategy

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Municipal and Community Affairs.

Develop governance training with Aboriginal government partners
Launch online training materials
Make face-to-face workshops available
With the federal government, make 6 online and classroom delivery governance training modules available
Develop protocol to define the respective roles and responsibilites of the GNWT and the federal government related to Designated Authorities
 
5.1.4
We will work to resolve outstanding land, resource and self-government agreements with the Akaitcho, Dehcho, NWT Metis Nation, Acho Dene Koe and the Government of Canada during the term of our government, and advocate that particular focus in our negotiations be placed on land quantum.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.1.4 – We will work to resolve outstanding land, resource and self-government agreements with the Akaitcho, Dehcho, NWT Métis Nation, Acho Dene Koe and the Government of Canada during the term of our government, and advocate that particular focus in our negotiations be placed on land quantum.

Negotiations are underway in all regions of the NWT as Indigenous governments seek to confirm their Aboriginal and treaty rights in the NWT.  The GNWT, as a full partner to these negotiations, is presently engaged in 14 sets of negotiations that are either leading to the conclusion of a Framework Agreement, an Agreement-in-Principle, or a Final Agreement.

In the spring of 2016, new GNWT approaches to negotiations were approved and are currently being implemented.

Since 2014, negotiations have resulted in six significant milestone agreements having been signed by the Parties. There were the Inuvialuit Self-government Agreement-in-Principle, the Northwest Territory Métis Nation Land and Resources Agreement-in-Principle, the Nacho Nyak Dun Transboundary Framework Agreement, the Acho Dene Koe First Nation Land and Resources Agreement-in-Principle, the Colville Lake Self-government Framework Agreement, and the Délįnę Final Self-government Agreement.

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.1.1 – Consistent with the policy of Respect, Recognition & Responsibility, we will invite any regional or community Indigenous governments that are not yet a party to one, to strengthen their intergovernmental relations with the GNWT through the negotiation of an intergovernmental memorandum-of-understanding.
  • Commitment 5.1.2 – We will consult with Indigenous governments to complete the next phase of regulation making under the Wildlife Act.
  • Commitment 5.1.3 – We will work in partnership with Indigenous governments to explore the design and launch of a training program for First Nations governments with municipal-like responsibilities in order to help improve the governance and management capacity of those governments.
  • Commitment 5.1.4 – We will work to resolve outstanding land, resource and self-government agreements with the Akaitcho, Dehcho, NWT Metis Nation, Acho Dene Koe and the Government of Canada during the term of our government, and advocate that particular focus in our negotiations be placed on land quantum.
  • Commitment 5.1.5 – We will provide funding to Indigenous community governments and work with communities to develop wellness plans that meet local needs and priorities.
  • Commitment 5.1.7 – We will continue to support the Intergovernmental Council towards implementation of the vision of cooperative and collaborative management of lands and resources, as set out in the Lands and Resources Devolution Agreement.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Negotiations including new approaches
Appoint Ministerial Special Representatives
Reports from of Ministerial Special Representatives
Release new land quantum offers for ADFN and NWTMN
Evaluate new approaches to negotiations
 
5.1.5
We will provide funding to Aboriginal community governments and work with communities to develop wellness plans that meet local needs and priorities.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment: 5.1.5: Provide funding to Aboriginal community governments and work with communities to develop wellness plans that meet local needs and priorities

The GNWT is in the 4th year of a 5 year funding agreement with Health Canada for Community Wellness Funding. This federal funding supports Aboriginal communities to develop Community Wellness Plans. Having a current Community Wellness Plan is the basis for Community Wellness Initiatives funding eligibility.

Communities are using this funding to support projects such as:

•Family Retreat Program (Fort Resolution)

•Youth Wellness Radio Show (Fort Good Hope)

•Elders programming (Aklavik)

•Ka’agee Tu First Nation Cultural Camp (Kakisa)

•Yellowknife Dene First Nation’s “Mama n Bebia Program” (Dettah and Ndilo)

Provide annual funding and support for community wellness plans and programming
Provide annual funding and support for community wellness plans and programming
Provide annual funding and support for community wellness plans and programming
 
5.1.7
We will continue to support the Intergovernmental Council towards implementation of the vision of cooperative and collaborative management of lands and resources, as set out in the Lands and Resources Devolution Agreement
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.1.7 – We will continue to support the Intergovernmental Council towards implementation of the vision of cooperative and collaborative management of lands and resources, as set out in the Lands and Resources Devolution Agreement.

A key feature of the Devolution Agreement was the establishment of the Intergovernmental Council to allow the GNWT and Indigenous governments to cooperate and collaborate on matters related to lands and resource management across regions, while respecting the authority of each government in its respective jurisdiction.

The Council is made up of the GNWT, Inuvialuit Regional Corporation, Northwest Territory Métis Nation, Sahtu Secretariat Incorporated, Gwich’in Tribal Council, Tłı̨chǫ Government, Acho Dene Koe First Nation, Salt River First Nation, Denínu Kų́ę́ First Nation and the Kátł’odeeche First Nation.

In addition to the annual meetings of the Intergovernmental Council, the Intergovernmental Council Secretariat meets on a quarterly basis and its sub-working groups (Indigenous Government Capacity Building, Finance, and Impact Benefits Agreements) meet regularly throughout the year. Minutes of all the meetings are prepared with action items clearly outlined and reported on.

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.1.1 – Consistent with the policy of Respect, Recognition & Responsibility, we will invite any regional or community Indigenous governments that are not yet a party to one, to strengthen their intergovernmental relations with the GNWT through the negotiation of an intergovernmental memorandum-of-understanding.
  • Commitment 5.1.2 – We will consult with Indigenous governments to complete the next phase of regulation making under the Wildlife Act.
  • Commitment 5.1.3 – We will work in partnership with Indigenous governments to explore the design and launch of a training program for First Nations governments with municipal-like responsibilities in order to help improve the governance and management capacity of those governments.
  • Commitment 5.1.4 – We will work to resolve outstanding land, resource and self-government agreements with the Akaitcho, Dehcho, NWT Metis Nation, Acho Dene Koe and the Government of Canada during the term of our government, and advocate that particular focus in our negotiations be placed on land quantum.
  • Commitment 5.1.5 – We will provide funding to Indigenous community governments and work with communities to develop wellness plans that meet local needs and priorities.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Begin developing Intergovernmental Council Strategic Plan
Continue annual meetings with the Intergovernmental Council
Complete the Intergovernmental Council Strategic Plan
Advancing, finalizing, and implementing land, resources, and self-government agreements, including ongoing post-devolution initiatives.
 
5.2.1
We will seek to establish a joint committee between Cabinet Ministers and Regular Members to share information and discuss approaches on the advancement of land, resource, and self-government agreements as well as initiatives to enhance relationships with Aboriginal governments.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.2.1 – We will seek to establish a joint committee between Cabinet Ministers and Regular Members to share information and discuss approaches on the advancement of land, resource, and self-government agreements as well as initiatives to enhance relationships with Indigenous governments.

A Joint Working Group on Indigenous Relations and Aboriginal Rights Agreements has been established to serve as a forum for discussions on new initiatives as they pertain to relations with Indigenous governments, and to review matters related to the negotiation of land, resources and self-government agreements.

The Working Group is comprised of seven members including the Minister of Executive and Indigenous Affairs, who shall serve as chair; three members selected from Cabinet; and three Regular members of the Legislative Assembly.

The Working Group will provide advice and make recommendations to the Minister of Executive and Indigenous Affairs to:

  • strengthen relations with Indigenous governments; and
  • help facilitate the timely resolution of Aboriginal rights claims to achieve the reconciliation of Indigenous interests with those of the broader society

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.2.3 – We will work with Indigenous governments to jointly develop their human resource capacity, for example by finalizing and evaluating the existing pilot project with the Gwich’in Tribal Council.  
  • Commitment 5.2.4 – We will pursue an agreement with the federal government on the management of offshore resources.
  • Commitment 5.2.5 – We will work to improve the NWT integrated resource management regime to ensure the regime reflects NWT interests and priorities.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Finalize terms of reference
First meeting of joint working group
 
5.2.3
We will work with Aboriginal governments to jointly develop their human resource capacity, for example by finalizing and evaluating the existing pilot project with the Gwich’in Tribal Council.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.2.3 – We will work with Indigenous governments to jointly develop their human resource capacity, for example by finalizing and evaluating the existing pilot project with the Gwich’in Tribal Council.

The GNWT has been discussing the issue of capacity building with Canada and Indigenous governments in the context of fiscal and implementation side-tables associated with self-government negotiations, and at implementation committees associated with settled land, resources and self-government agreements.

The Gwich’in Tribal Council, GNWT and Canada have developed an intergovernmental Gwich’in Internship Program that will provide qualified Gwich’in candidates with on-the-job training, mentoring and skills development through consecutive one-year work placements with each government. The project is expected to employ nine interns in total, staggered over a five-year timeframe. The program began in September 2015.

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.2.1 – We will seek to establish a joint committee between Cabinet Ministers and Regular Members to share information and discuss approaches on the advancement of land, resource, and self-government agreements as well as initiatives to enhance relationships with Indigenous governments.
  • Commitment 5.2.4 – We will pursue an agreement with the federal government on the management of offshore resources.
  • Commitment 5.2.5 – We will work to improve the NWT integrated resource management regime to ensure the regime reflects NWT interests and priorities.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Release inventory of GNWT training for Aboriginal governments
Present annual report to Intergovernmental Council
Development of Land Administration Workshop for Aboriginal Governments
First GNWT placement of Gwich'in interns
Evaluate effectiveness of capacity building activities
 
5.2.4
We will pursue an agreement with the federal government on the management of offshore resources.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.2.4 – We will pursue an agreement with the federal government on the management of offshore resources.

The Northwest Territories Lands and Resources Devolution Agreement (s.3.20) requires Canada and the GNWT, with the participation of the IRC, to commence negotiations respecting the management of offshore resources in the Beaufort Sea, and other offshore areas as may be agreed. The Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs is responsible for leading the coordination of work required as negotiations respecting the management of offshore oil and gas resources in the NWT are undertaken.

Although several operators maintain exploration and Significant Discovery Licenses in the NWT, no exploration activity is currently taking place.

With currently low oil and gas prices, there are no plans for new industry activities in the near term.

The NWT Geological Survey, along with federal, provincial and territorial partners, continue to discover and assess enormous oil and gas deposits in the territory.

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.2.1 – We will seek to establish a joint committee between Cabinet Ministers and Regular Members to share information and discuss approaches on the advancement of land, resource, and self-government agreements as well as initiatives to enhance relationships with Indigenous governments.
  • Commitment 5.2.3 – We will work with Indigenous governments to jointly develop their human resource capacity, for example by finalizing and evaluating the existing pilot project with the Gwich’in Tribal Council.
  • Commitment 5.2.5 – We will work to improve the NWT integrated resource management regime to ensure the regime reflects NWT interests and priorities.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Begin engagement with Canada and Inuvialuit Regional Corporation
Develop and obtain approval for GNWT negotiations mandate to negotiate for management of offshore resources
Obtain commitment from Canada and Inuvialuit Regional Corporation to begin negotiations for management of offshore resources
Begin negotiations for offshore management resources
 
5.2.5
We will work to improve the NWT integrated resource management regime to ensure the regime reflects NWT interests and priorities.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.2.5 – We will work to improve the NWT integrated resource management regime to ensure the regime reflects NWT interests and priorities.

Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act (MVRMA) review

A critical component of the NWT integrated resource management regime is the federal legislation, the Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act. This Act provides “an integrated system of land and water management in the Mackenzie Valley...”

Currently the federal government is reviewing possible legislative amendments and regulatory activities associated with this piece of legislation. The Department of Lands is coordinating government-wide responses, and being proactive in helping inform federal thinking in an effort to ensure changes to the legislation and regulations reflect northern needs. This means the Department will be leading GNWT’s participation in the review and amendment process of the Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act and its associated regulations in 2018 (milestone 1) and 2019 (milestone 2).

Lead GNWT’s participation in the Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act and regulations review and amendment processes
Lead GNWT’s participation in the Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act and regulations review and amendment processes
Increasing transparency and accountability and strengthening consensus government through improved communications.
5.3.1
We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by:
 
Developing and proposing amendments to the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (ATIPP Act).
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.3.1 – We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by:
Developing and proposing amendments to the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (ATIPP Act).

The ATIPP Act reflects the Government’s commitment to providing open, accessible and accountable government to the people of the NWT. In 2012, the Department of Justice committed to undertake a comprehensive review of the ATIPP Act to address issues brought forward by the Standing Committee on Government Operations, the Information and Privacy Commissioner and public bodies subject to the Act.

In April 2016, the Department initiated a public engagement on the ATIPP Act. The “Public Engagement on the Comprehensive Review of the ATIPP Act” paper asked for the public’s input on specific issues raised in relation to the Act. The paper also provided an opportunity for the public to raise any other issues or considerations in making the Act more effective. The results of this engagement formed the basis of a proposal for legislative changes to the Act.

The Department of Justice is working to amend the ATIPP Act during the life of the 18th Legislative Assembly. Steps to amend the Act include undertaking public engagement on proposed changes to the Act (Milestone 1), releasing a report on the results of the public engagement (Milestone 2), developing a legislative proposal (Milestone 3), and introducing a Bill to amend the ATIPP Act (Milestone 4).

Related Mandate Commitments:

  • Commitment 5.3.1 - We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by: Creating a GNWT privacy framework and management programs, so that the privacy protections in the ATIPP Act are administered consistently and fairly.

  • Commitment 5.3.1 - We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by: Ensuring online training is available on access to information and protection of privacy requirements for GNWT employees as well as employees of territorial public bodies.

Public engagement on amendments
Release report on public engagement
Develop legislative proposal for changes to the ATIPP Act for Cabinet approval
Introduce Bill to amend the ATIPP Act
 
Creating a GNWT privacy framework and management programs, so that the privacy protections in the ATIPP Act are administered consistently and fairly.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.3.1 – We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by:
Creating a GNWT privacy framework and management programs, so that the privacy protections in the ATIPP Act are administered consistently and fairly.

The purpose of this work is to establish a consistent approach to privacy management for the GNWT. The privacy framework will reflect current practices, resources and policies and build on existing work.

The GNWT privacy framework will set out the necessary elements that are required to establish a privacy program within a department and will include the development and delivery of privacy training through the Department of Justice GNWT Access and Privacy Office.

The Department of Justice is working with other departments to develop and implement a GNWT privacy framework. Steps being undertaken include developing the GNWT privacy framework (Milestone 1) and implementing the framework, including delivering training to GNWT staff (Milestone 2).

Related Mandate Commitments:

  • Commitment 5.3.1 - We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by: Developing and proposing amendments to the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (ATIPP Act).

  • Commitment 5.3.1 - We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by: Ensuring online training is available on access to information and protection of privacy requirements for GNWT employees as well as employees of territorial public bodies.

Finalize framework
Implement framework, including the delivery of training to GNWT staff
 
Ensuring online training is available on access to information and protection of privacy requirements for GNWT employees as well as employees of territorial public bodies.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.3.1 – We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by:
Ensuring online training is available on access to information and protection of privacy requirements for GNWT employees as well as employees of territorial public bodies.

The Department of Justice launched the online Access to Information and Protection of Privacy General Awareness Course for GNWT employees and employees of territorial public bodies in March 2017. The course consists of six modules relating to access to information and protection of privacy.

Upon completion of the course, employees will have a better understanding of the legislation, the obligations of employees in relation to protection of privacy, the rights of individuals to access records, and the simple steps employees can take to protect the records and information they handle.

The Department of Justice will continue to promote the new online course to GNWT employees and employees of territorial public bodies. Steps undertaken to make online training available to GNWT employees included developing the online training (Milestone 1), launching the online training course (Milestone 2), adjusting the training modules based on employee feedback (Milestone 3), and revising the training course to ensure it reflects the amended ATIPP Act when it comes into force (Milestone 4).

Related Mandate Commitments:

  • Commitment 5.3.1 - We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by: Developing and proposing amendments to the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (ATIPP Act).

  • Commitment 5.3.1 - We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by: Creating a GNWT privacy framework and management programs, so that the privacy protections in the ATIPP Act are administered consistently and fairly.

Development of online training
Launch online training for employees
Adjust training modules based on feedback
Revise training based on changes to ATIPP Act
 
Continuing to safeguard and improve the security and integrity of the information entrusted to government on behalf of residents, businesses and visitors.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.3.1 – We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by:

Continuing to safeguard and improve the security and integrity of the information entrusted to government on behalf of residents, businesses and visitors.

The Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) takes a lead role in ensuring Departments have the necessary safeguards in place to improve access to information and protect privacy, and works with departments to assess and respond to risks or threats posed by the collection and use of various information systems/solutions.

The OCIO supports improving access and privacy by promoting information security and privacy awareness, advising departments and agencies on best practices, and assisting in ensuring security and privacy concerns are dealt with appropriately.

OCIO collaborates with federal/provincial/territorial groups on information security-related matters, to ensure GNWT is aware of threats discovered in other jurisdictions, share best practices and foster collaboration to protect information and assure the public that information government holds is safeguarded and protected.

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.3.1 – We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by:  Developing and proposing amendments to the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (ATIPP Act).
  • Commitment 5.3.1 – We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by:  Creating a GNWT privacy framework and management programs, so that the privacy protections in the ATIPP Act are administered consistently and fairly.
  • Commitment 5.3.1 – We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by:  Continuing to safeguard and improve the security and integrity of the information entrusted to government on behalf of residents, businesses and visitors.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Finance.

Develop information security awareness program
Implement security to protect against unknown or untrusted software
Implement security awareness program
Begin delivering security awareness program
 
5.3.2
We will implement the government’s new Financial Administration Act in order to improve government-wide planning and accountability, and overall fiscal responsibility.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.3.2 – We will implement the government’s new Financial Administration Act in order to improve government-wide planning and accountability, and overall fiscal responsibility.

Through Bill 37, the 17th Legislative Assembly approved the modernization of the Financial Administration Act (FAA), to establish a framework for improved accountability, transparency and fiscal responsibility in respect of public money and other money administered by Government and public agencies.  The new FAA came into effect on April 1, 2016 and was the first major update of the FAA since 1987.

This necessitated the corresponding update to the Financial Administration Manual (FAM) to comply with the new FAA.

The Financial Administration Manual (FAM) is intended to provide policy direction regarding the purpose and scope of the mandatory provisions of the FAA, related regulations, and areas requiring direction for effective financial administration.

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.3.5 – We will establish an Open Government Policy to enhance civic participation, increase the availability and accessibility of information about government activities, and explore new technologies for openness and accountability.
  • Commitment 5.3.6 – We will improve public visibility and accessibility of Cabinet by organizing Cabinet meetings in each region of the NWT, holding selected Committee-of-Cabinet meetings in public, and meeting with standing committees in public more frequently.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Finance.

Complete updates to Financial Administration Manual policies and interpretive bulletins
5.3.3
We will improve collaboration for easier access to government programs and services online, including by:
 
Aligning territorial approaches with pan-Canadian efforts to establish and use digital identities for online government.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.3.3 – We will improve collaboration for easier access to government programs and services online, including by:

Aligning territorial approaches with pan-Canadian efforts to establish and use digital identities for online government.  

The Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) works with all jurisdictions and the Government of Canada to ensure GNWT approaches for online digital identities align with the rest of the country. This will improve sharing of information between jurisdictions and simplify the processes for establishing and verifying identity, when migrating within and between jurisdictions.

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.3.1 – We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by:  Creating a GNWT privacy framework and management programs, so that the privacy protections in the ATIPP Act are administered consistently and fairly.
  • Commitment 5.3.1 – We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by:  Continuing to safeguard and improve the security and integrity of the information entrusted to government on behalf of residents, businesses and visitors.
  • Commitment 5.3.3 – We will improve collaboration for easier access to government programs and services online, including by: Creating a single integrated online portal for residents and businesses to securely transact with government.
  • Commitment 5.3.3 – We will improve collaboration for easier access to government programs and services online, including by: Participating in national surveys to assess both resident and business satisfaction with government service delivery.
  • Commitment 5.3.4 – We will maximize citizens’ ability to access government by using consistent approaches to social media, visual identity, and overall communications.
  • Commitment 5.3.5 – We will establish an Open Government Policy to enhance civic participation, increase the availability and accessibility of information about government activities, and explore new technologies for openness and accountability

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Finance.

Determine feasibility of electronically accessing National Routing System for vital statistic events
Participate in the design and development of the national Pan-Canadian Identity Trust Framework
Participate in the design and development of the national Digital Identity Authentication Council of Canada's digital identity validation framework
Develop a standard identity solution for GNWT use to ensure alignment with Pan-Canadian Trust and Validation Framework
 
Creating a single integrated online portal for residents and businesses to securely transact with government.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.3.3 – We will improve collaboration for easier access to government programs and services online, including by:

Creating a single, integrated online portal for residents and businesses to securely transact with government.

The Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) is leading efforts to review the way information systems and services, including online services are coordinated, implemented, and managed. This is taking place through initiatives under the Service Innovation Strategy. The OCIO is working with all jurisdictions and the Government of Canada to ensure GNWT approaches for online digital identities align with the rest of the country. In addition, the OCIO works with departments to improve access to online services and to develop a realistic approach for a single integrated online portal to serve residents, businesses and visitors online.

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.3.1 – We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by:  Creating a GNWT privacy framework and management programs, so that the privacy protections in the ATIPP Act are administered consistently and fairly.
  • Commitment 5.3.1 – We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by:  Continuing to safeguard and improve the security and integrity of the information entrusted to government on behalf of residents, businesses and visitors.
  • Commitment 5.3.3 – We will improve collaboration for easier access to government programs and services online, including by: Aligning territorial approaches with pan-Canadian efforts to establish and use digital identities for online government.
  • Commitment 5.3.3 – We will improve collaboration for easier access to government programs and services online, including by: Participating in national surveys to assess both resident and business satisfaction with government service delivery.
  • Commitment 5.3.4 – We will maximize citizens’ ability to access government by using consistent approaches to social media, visual identity, and overall communications.
  • Commitment 5.3.5 – We will establish an Open Government Policy to enhance civic participation, increase the availability and accessibility of information about government activities, and explore new technologies for openness and accountability

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Finance.

Review implementation and management of Information Communications Technology services
Develop business case for single integrated online portal
Develop implementation plan for changing how Information and Communications Technology services are delivered across government
Develop approach and begin implementation of a single integrated online portal
 
Increasing online accessibility to driver and motor vehicle services as well as commercial permitting services.
Background Note

Governance 5.3.3:

 

We will improve collaboration for easier access to government programs and services online, including by: Increasing online accessibility to driver and motor vehicle services as well as commercial permitting services.

 

 

Status:

 

As of March 2017, the Northwest Territories (NWT) was the first jurisdiction in North America to have implemented the complete list of online Driver and Motor Vehicle services and is recognized as an industry leader. To date, INF has provided over 200,000 online services, including those that generate revenue and those that do not (e.g. reminders, scheduling), and services have grown in use by 72% from the previous year.

 

The Department of Infrastructure (INF) continues to expand motor vehicles services offered online, particularly for commercial vehicles. Commercial registration permits are now available online.

 

Next Steps:

 

INF will be implementing additional online services for both residents as well as organizations operating in the NWT. Residents will be able request an online accident report and make a personalized plate request. Organizations will also have access to commercial fleet management for self-managing tolling transponders for the Deh Cho Bridge.

 

Accomplishments to Date:

 

To date, online motor vehicle services offered by INF include:

 

  • Email and SMS (text) notification reminders for driver examination appointments, expiring registrations, driver licence renewals, general identification card renewals, driver medicals, and commercial inspections;

  • The option to renew, reprint, or cancel a vehicle registration;

  • The option to book, reschedule, or cancel a driver examination;

  • The option to print replacement documents including receipts, an NWT vehicle registration certificate, examination booking, commercial registration permit, single trip permit, and annual permit ;

  • The option to request driver abstracts online; and

  • The option to self-manage your online user account profile in order to authorize other users to use your account to process online requests on your behalf.

 

Background:

 

In 2013, INF replaced the "Motor Vehicle Information System", which provided the foundation to implement DOT's online driver and motor vehicle (DMV) services.

 

In the fall of 2014, INF implemented digital credentials for the online services thereby providing a standard and secure way to identify and authenticate online DMV users. Residents from 32 communities have now subscribed to online services and are obtaining services.

 

Links to Other Government Activities:

 

  • NWT Transportation Strategy 2015-2040: Supports the strategic priority of embracing innovation to improve the way we do business by improving service delivery and modernizing transportation programs and policies.

     

    For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Infrastructure.

Implement online driver licence renewals
Implement option to change commercial vehicle weights online
Implement electronic bypass at the Enterprise scale
Install Deh Cho Bridge self-management tolling transponders
 
Participating in national surveys to assess both resident and business satisfaction with government service delivery.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.3.3 – We will improve collaboration for easier access to government programs and services online, including by:

Participating in national surveys to assess both resident and business satisfaction with government service delivery.

The Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) is leading efforts to review the way information systems and services, including online services are coordinated, implemented, and managed. This is taking place through initiatives under the Service Innovation Strategy. The OCIO is working with all jurisdictions and the Government of Canada to ensure GNWT approaches for online digital identities align with the rest of the country. In addition, the OCIO works with departments to improve access to online services and to develop a realistic approach for a single integrated online portal to serve residents, businesses and visitors online.

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.3.1 – We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by:  Creating a GNWT privacy framework and management programs, so that the privacy protections in the ATIPP Act are administered consistently and fairly.
  • Commitment 5.3.1 – We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by:  Continuing to safeguard and improve the security and integrity of the information entrusted to government on behalf of residents, businesses and visitors.
  • Commitment 5.3.3 – We will improve collaboration for easier access to government programs and services online, including by: Aligning territorial approaches with pan-Canadian efforts to establish and use digital identities for online government.
  • Commitment 5.3.3 – We will improve collaboration for easier access to government programs and services online, including by: Creating a single integrated online portal for residents and businesses to securely transact with government.
  • Commitment 5.3.4 – We will maximize citizens’ ability to access government by using consistent approaches to social media, visual identity, and overall communications.
  • Commitment 5.3.5 – We will establish an Open Government Policy to enhance civic participation, increase the availability and accessibility of information about government activities, and explore new technologies for openness and accountability

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Finance.

Provide certified service training to GNWT employees
Participate in Taking Care of Business national business satisfaction survey
Provide certified service training to GNWT employees (ongoing
Participate in Citizens First national citizen satisfaction survey
 
5.3.4
We will maximize citizens’ ability to access government by using consistent approaches to social media, visual identity, and overall communications.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.3.4 – We will maximize citizens’ ability to access government by using consistent approaches to social media, visual identity, and overall communications.

The Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs is working with all GNWT departments to renew the communications function with the aim of ensuring the highest quality communication service to the citizens of the NWT.  The communications renewal includes the launch of an updated Visual Identity Program (VIP) (Milestone 1) with the theme of one unified identity for one government. 

A strong visual identity makes it easier for citizens to understand and access GNWT programs and services and it helps to identify the GNWT’s presence in an open and transparent way.  Additional information on the GNWT’s updated Visual Identity Program can be found here: https://www.eia.gov.nt.ca/en/visual-identity-program-guidelines.

Development of a GNWT Strategic Communications Plan (Milestone 2) will help improve public understanding of GNWT decisions and activities and the reasons behind them by establishing common high level messaging to explain how the GNWT is pursuing the priorities of the Legislative Assembly and its mandate commitments in a more consistent and coordinated fashion.

The communications renewal also involves implementing Social Media Guidelines to facilitate consistent, effective and meaningful conversations between citizens and the government through social media platforms, and creating a GNWT Digital Communications Framework (Milestone 3) that will ensure a consolidated, coordinated and effective online presence supporting government communications through social media, and an evaluation of the effectiveness of the GNWT’s communications approach (Milestone 4).

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.3.5 – We will establish an Open Government Policy to enhance civic participation, increase the availability and accessibility of information about government activities, and explore new technologies for openness and accountability.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Launch Visual Identity Program
Begin implementation of Strategic Communications Plan
Establish Digital Communications Framework
Evaluate effectiveness of GNWT communications
 
5.3.5
We will establish an Open Government Policy to enhance civic participation, increase the availability and accessibility of information about government activities, and explore new technologies for openness and accountability
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.3.5 – We will establish an Open Government Policy to enhance civic participation, increase the availability and accessibility of information about government activities, and explore new technologies for openness and accountability.

The term ‘open government’ reflects a broader emphasis by governments to become more transparent, accountable, and responsive to citizens. Open Government includes three components: open data, open information, and open dialogue. The Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) committed to develop an Open Government Policy that meets the needs of NWT residents.

Development of the Open Government Policy included input from GNWT departments and Standing Committee, research on open government initiatives of other federal, provincial, territorial and municipal governments, and feedback collected through public engagement on Open Government conducted by the Minister of Public Engagement and Transparency from December 2016 to May 2017 (Milestone 1).  The Minister tabled a ‘What We Heard’ report on the public engagement in fall 2017 (Milestone 2).

Establishment of the Open Government Policy includes the sharing of the Policy with Standing Committee and the public release of the Policy (Milestone 3), accompanied by a communications plan.

The Policy provides a framework for the GNWT to develop approaches to expand the volume and accessibility of GNWT open data sets and support the public in accessing government information, and guidelines for rationalizing and modernizing approaches to public engagement (Milestone 4).

Links to Other Commitments:

  • Commitment 5.3.1 – We will improve access to information and the protection of privacy by:
  • Developing and proposing amendments to the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (ATIPP Act).
  • Creating a GNWT privacy framework and management programs, so that the privacy protections in the ATIPP Act are administered consistently and fairly.
  • Commitment 5.3.3 - We will improve collaboration for easier access to government programs and services online, including by:
  • Aligning territorial approaches with pan-Canadian efforts to establish and use digital identities for online government.
  • Creating a single integrated online portal for residents and businesses to securely transact with government.
  • Commitment 5.3.4 – We will maximize citizens’ ability to access government by using consistent approaches to social media, visual identity, and overall communications.
  • Commitment 5.3.6 – We will improve public visibility and accessibility of Cabinet by organizing Cabinet meetings in each region of the NWT, holding selected Committee-of-Cabinet meetings in public, and meeting with standing committees in public more frequently.
  • Commitment 5.3.7 – We will improve opportunities for meaningful public input into government decision making by improving access to government public engagement initiatives and reporting on how public views have shaped government decisions.
  • Commitment 5.3.8 – We will enhance collaboration between Cabinet and Regular Members by ensuring early, regular and open consultation by Cabinet with Regular Members and Committees of the Legislative Assembly, exploring more options to formally work together, and strengthening processes for consistently sharing and tracking information provided to standing committees.
  • Commitment 5.3.9 – We will develop and implement an effective communications plan to make residents aware of the mechanisms available to appeal government decisions.
  • Commitment 5.3.10 – We will do a better job of making our residents, particularly those in smaller communities, aware of available government programs and services, and how to access them, through Single Window Service Centres and our Government Service Officers.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Public engagement on developing Open Government Policy
Release 'What we Heard' report on Open Government Public Engagement
Establish Open Government Policy
Begin implementation of Open Government Policy
 
5.3.6
We will improve public visibility and accessibility of Cabinet by organizing Cabinet meetings in each region of the NWT, holding selected Committee-of-Cabinet meetings in public, and meeting with standing committees in public more frequently.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.3.6 – We will improve public visibility and accessibility of Cabinet by organizing Cabinet meetings in each region of the NWT, holding selected Committee-of-Cabinet meetings in public, and meeting with standing committees in public more frequently.

The Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) is engaged in a number of activities related to open government, including holding public Cabinet open houses and public meetings of Committees-of-Cabinet (COCs). 

Cabinet (also called the Executive Council) is the senior decision-making body of the GNWT and is made up of the Premier and six ministers and is responsible for the day-to-day administration of government.  In the Northwest Territories consensus system of government, the Premier and Cabinet are selected by the Members of the Legislative Assembly during a territorial leadership meeting. The Premier is responsible for assigning portfolios to Cabinet Ministers and establishing mandates based on the priorities of the Legislative Assembly.  More information about Cabinet can be found here: http://www.gov.nt.ca/premier/cabinet.

COCs consider issues in broad sectoral areas that often involve the mandates of multiple Ministers and departments. COC discussions help to coordinate the work of multiple departments, reduce internal silos and support Cabinet decision making.  There are four COCs that broadly reflect the priority themes outlined in the Mandate of the Government of the Northwest Territories 2016-2019 (Revised):

  • Priorities and Planning
  • Economy and Environment
  • Energy and Climate Change
  • Social Envelope

More information about COCs can be found here: http://www.gov.nt.ca/premier/cabinet-committees.

Public Cabinet open houses were held in Norman Wells and Inuvik in spring 2016, in Hay River in September 2016, in Fort Simpson and Yellowknife in October 2016, and in Fort Smith in October 2017 (Milestone 1).  A public COC meeting (Economy and Environment) was held in Hay River in September 2016 (Milestone 2).

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.3.5 – We will establish an Open Government Policy to enhance civic participation, increase the availability and accessibility of information about government activities, and explore new technologies for openness and accountability.
  • Commitment 5.3.7 – We will improve opportunities for meaningful public input into government decision making by improving access to government public engagement initiatives and reporting on how public views have shaped government decisions.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Begin holding public Cabinet open houses
Begin holidng public Committees of Cabinet meetings
 
5.3.7
We will improve opportunities for meaningful public input into government decision making by improving access to government public engagement initiatives and reporting on how public views have shaped government decisions.
Background Note

Governance

Commitment 5.3.7 – We will improve opportunities for meaningful public input into government decision making by improving access to government public engagement initiatives and reporting on how public views have shaped government decisions.

The term ‘open government’ reflects a broader emphasis by governments to become more transparent, accountable, and responsive to citizens. Open Government includes three components: open data, open information, and open dialogue. The Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) is engaged in a number of activities to promote open government, including improving access to government public engagement initiatives.

The Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs (EIA) is working with all GNWT Departments to develop public engagement guidelines.  These guidelines will also be based on feedback collected through public engagement on Open Government conducted by the Minister of Public Engagement and Transparency from December 2016 to May 2017, and research on open government initiatives of other federal, provincial, territorial and municipal governments.

Improving public access to government engagement and decision-making includes providing links to ongoing public engagement activities and opportunities for participation on the Minister of Public Engagement and Transparency’s website (Milestone 1); the development of common principles and approaches to public engagement for GNWT departments (Milestone 2); and the implementation of a common public engagement approach and guidelines for consistently reporting on input gather from the public and explaining how it has been reflected in government decisions (Milestone 3).

Public engagement is not the same as governments’ legal duty to consult Aboriginal peoples on any matters that may impact Treaty and/or Aboriginal rights as set out in Section 35(1) of the Constitution Act.

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.3.5 – We will establish an Open Government Policy to enhance civic participation, increase the availability and accessibility of information about government activities, and explore new technologies for openness and accountability
  • Commitment 5.3.6 – We will improve public visibility and accessibility of Cabinet by organizing Cabinet meetings in each region of the NWT, holding selected Committee-of-Cabinet meetings in public, and meeting with standing committees in public more frequently.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Provide links to GNWT public engagements on Public Engagement and Transparency website
Begin development of public engagement guidelines for GNWT Departments
Establish public engagement guidelines for GNWT departments
 
5.3.8
We will enhance collaboration between Cabinet and Regular Members by ensuring early, regular and open consultation by Cabinet with Regular Members and Committees of the Legislative Assembly, exploring more options to formally work together, and strengthening processes for consistently sharing and tracking information provided to standing committees.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.3.8 – We will enhance collaboration between Cabinet and Regular Members by ensuring early, regular and open consultation by Cabinet with Regular Members and Committees of the Legislative Assembly, exploring more options to formally work together, and strengthening processes for consistently sharing and tracking information provided to standing committees.

Cabinet (also called the Executive Council) is the senior decision-making body of the Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT). It is made up of the Premier and six ministers and is responsible for the day-to-day administration of government.

In order to enhance collaboration between Cabinet and Regular Members, the Cabinet will continue to identify opportunities for working with Regular MLAs and Committees.  To ensure more consistent information-sharing and allow for faster response time particularly for constituent matters, the Executive Council Offices began tracking and reporting on MLA requests for information effective October 2016 (Milestone 1).  Effective February 2017, the Executive Council Offices also began tracking and reporting quarterly to MLAs on all written information shared by the Premier and Ministers with Standing Committees or all MLAs. These processes allow for a more streamlined and effective approach for the Executive Council and regular MLAs to engage in high level policy discussions through the Standing Committee process.

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.3.5 – We will establish an Open Government Policy to enhance civic participation, increase the availability and accessibility of information about government activities, and explore new technologies for openness and accountability
  • Commitment 5.3.6 – We will improve public visibility and accessibility of Cabinet by organizing Cabinet meetings in each region of the NWT, holding selected Committee-of-Cabinet meetings in public, and meeting with standing committees in public more frequently.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Establish operating procedures for Executive Council offices
 
5.3.9
We will develop and implement an effective communications plan to make residents aware of the mechanisms available to appeal government decisions.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.3.9 – We will develop and implement an effective communications plan to make residents aware of the mechanisms available to appeal government decisions.

The Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs (EIA) is working with the Office of the Chief Information Officer to create and maintain an online directory that will provide Northwest Territories residents with links to information about all available processes to appeal government decisions or lodge a complaint to be heard (Milestone 1). The website will provide contact information to the appropriate government authority.

The launch of the website also includes the development (Milestone 2) and implementation of (Milestone 3) a communications plan to make NWT residents aware of all available processes to appeal government decisions or lodge a complaint.

Related Mandate Commitments:

  • Commitment 5.3.3 – We will improve collaboration for easier access to government programs and services online, including by:
  • Aligning territorial approaches with pan-Canadian efforts to establish and use digital identities for online government.
  • Creating a single integrated online portal for residents and businesses to securely transact with government.
  • Commitment 5.3.5 – We will establish an Open Government Policy to enhance civic participation, increase the availability and accessibility of information about government activities, and explore new technologies for openness and accountability.
  • Commitment 5.3.11 – We will develop legislation within two years to establish an independent parliamentary office of the ombudsman.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Launch online directory of appeals processes
Develop communications plan for appeals mechanisms
Implement communications plan for appeals mechanisms
 
5.3.10
We will do a better job of making our residents, particularly those in smaller communities, aware of available government programs and services, and how to access them, through Single Window Service Centres and our Government Service Officers.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.3.10 – We will do a better job of making our residents, particularly those in smaller communities, aware of available government programs and services, and how to access them, through Single Window Service Centres and our Government Service Officers.

Single Window Service Centres (SWSCs) provide residents in smaller communities with one-stop access to Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) programs and services.  SWSCs are staffed by trained half-time Government Service Officers (GSOs) who provide assistance and advice on government programs and services, serve as community navigators, and provide outreach services, including home visits to elders.  GSOs have been recruited from the communities they serve and many speak and provide service in Indigenous languages.

The Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs (EIA) is working with the federal government (Service Canada) to pilot the delivery of a number of federal programs and services in three SWSCs (Fort Liard, Tuktoyaktuk and Fort Providence), beginning during the 2016/17 fiscal year (Milestone 1).

The most recent SWSC was established on the Kátł’odeeche First Nation in September 2017, bringing the total number of SWSCs to 21 (Milestone 2).  More information on SWSCs, including contact information for each community, can be found here: https://www.eia.gov.nt.ca/en/priorities/access-government-programs-and-services-through-single-window-service-centres.

The Department of EIA will continue to strengthen and expand services available through SWSCs by offering more targeted training to GSOs and support staff to make them more aware of GNWT and federal programs and services (where applicable) to better serve the needs of our residents.  Improvement of the federal pilot programs will be undertaken based on results of an evaluation (Milestone 3).

The SWSC initiative received a national award for outstanding leadership and innovation from the Institute of Public Administration of Canada in 2014.

Links to Other Mandate Commitments:

  • Commitment 5.3.3 - We will improve collaboration for easier access to government programs and services online, including by:
  • Creating a single integrated online portal for residents and businesses to securely transact with government.
  • Aligning territorial approaches with pan-Canadian efforts to establish and use digital identities for online government.
  • Commitment 5.3.5 – We will establish an Open Government Policy to enhance civic participation, increase the availability and accessibility of information about government activities, and explore new technologies for openness and accountability.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Launch three pilot projects with federal government
Open Single Window Service Centre on Kátł’odeeche First Nation
Evaluate pilot projects
 
5.3.11
We will develop legislation within two years to establish an independent parliamentary office of the ombudsman.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.3.11 – We will develop legislation within two years to establish an independent parliamentary office of the ombudsman.

An Ombudsperson/Ombudsman investigates and reports on whether government agencies have followed fair policies and procedures. An Ombudsperson/Ombudsman does not overturn government decisions and is not an advocate.  

All provinces and territories, with the exception of Prince Edward Island, Nunavut and the Northwest Territories (NWT), have an independent parliamentary office of an Ombudsperson/Ombudsman.

In June 2014, the Standing Committee on Government Operations tabled a report outlining options for an Ombudsman for the NWT.  In summer 2016, Caucus (all Members of the Legislative Assembly) discussed a plan to establish an office of the Ombudsman.

The Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs is working with the Department of Justice and the Clerk of the Legislative Assembly to develop Ombudsperson/Ombudsman legislation during the life of the 18th Assembly.  Steps to establish an Ombudsperson/Ombudsman in the NWT include exploring options for potential structures and shared services to limit costs and increase capacity (Milestone 1), developing a legislative proposal (Milestone 2), and introducing a Bill to establish an office of an Ombudsperson/Ombudsman (Milestone 3).

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.3.5 – We will establish an Open Government Policy to enhance civic participation, increase the availability and accessibility of information about government activities, and explore new technologies for openness and accountability.
  • Commitment 5.3.9 – We will develop and implement an effective communications plan to make residents aware of the mechanisms available to appeal government decisions.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Research structural options
Develop legislative proposal to establish an Office of the Ombudsman for Cabinet approval
Introduce Bill to establish an Office of the Ombudsman
Building stronger relationships with community governments and stakeholders.
 
5.4.2
We will take further action to monitor drinking water quality as well as support community-based water monitoring programs
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.4.2 – We will take further action to monitor drinking water quality as well as support community-based water monitoring programs.

Background:

In 2005, the departments of MACA, HSS, ENR, and PWS released Managing Drinking Water Quality in the Northwest Territories: A Preventative Framework and Strategy. Guided by the Strategy, the four departments coordinate through the NWT Drinking Water and Waste Water Interdepartmental Committee to support community governments with a broad range of water quality activities.

HSS is working to assess the public health implications of results generated by GNWT water monitoring programs. Information compiled by the Drinking Water Committee is published annually in the Annual Water Report (Milestone 1). The NWT Drinking Water Technical Committee is researching options and information requirements to develop a new database for drinking water quality information (Milestone 2).

The Department of Municipal and Community Affairs (MACA) provides programs, services and training to better enable community governments to handle a broad range of water quality activities.

Water treatment plants in the NWT are being upgraded to ensure all drinking water in the NWT meets the Guidelines for Canadian Drinking Water Quality. These upgrades are to meet filtration guidelines. Today, drinking water is treated in all communities to ensure a safe supply for residents, but improving filtration and reducing turbidity, or suspended sediment is one more step to ensure safe drinking water.

The Circuit Rider training program uses MACA staff to directly train and support community governments in the operation of water plants. One-on-one delivery of course material is also provided to operators upon request, making use of northern experienced operations and government staff to provide community support. Community governments are targeted for three visits annually. The program focuses on achieving results in the following areas:

  • improvement of operator(s) competency,
  • supporting operator(s) in achieving certification,
  • improvement in water supply operations,
  • improvement in water supply sampling, testing and records, and
  • developing operations and maintenance plans for water supply systems.

Links to Other Government Activities:

The Departments of MACA, HSS, ENR, and PWS work collectively to support community governments with a broad range of water quality activities. Information about NWT drinking water is available at www.nwtdrinkingwater.ca.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Municipal and Community Affairs.

Release Annual Water Report
Launch renewed online drinking water quality information database
 
5.4.3
We will finalize community wildland fire protection plans, and develop and propose amendments to modernize forest protection legislation
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.4.3 – We will finalize community wildland fire protection plans, and develop and propose amendments to modernize forest protection legislation.

The Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) works with communities in the Northwest Territories (NWT) to develop and implement Community Wildfire Protection Plans (CWPP). Currently, every NWT community potentially at risk from wildland fire has a CWPP in place. These plans are designed to identify and reduce wildland fire risk in communities.

CWPPs are becoming a national standard for agencies and communities responsible for wildland fire management. The process is recognized as a crucial first step in better preparing homeowners and communities to reduce the risk of loss.

 

CWPP for all forested communities were updated in 2012. All CWPP have to be reviewed and updated (milestones 1, 3 and 4). Some issues with implementation and ownership of the plans have been identified.

 

Completed CWPPs help communities to:

  • make sound decisions on which areas are most critical to address;

  • develop funding applications to assist in the implementation of recommendations; and

  • work with private landowners/homeowners to take responsibility and address their own exposure to risk.

The Forest Management Act and the Forest Protection Act were established in 1988 with the transfer of forestry from the federal government. The Acts are outdated and require new language and a more sustainable approach in terms of managing forest within northern ecosystems (milestone 2). The Forest Protection Act is based on a very old act and requires the development of new regulations.

Related Mandate Commitments:

  • Commitment 1.3.2 - In order to advance the territorial vision of land and resource management in accordance with the Land Use and Sustainability Framework, we will evolve our legislative, regulatory, and policy systems by: Developing and proposing amendments to the Forest Management Act.

Complete planning framework for Community Wildland Fire Protection Plans
Complete Community Hazard and Risk Mitigation Implementation Plan
Introduce Bill to amend Forest Management and Protection Act
Updated Community Wildland Fire Protection Plans for all forested communiites
 
5.4.4
We will continue to pursue and assist communities in accessing new federal funding for the enhancement of community government infrastructure, including implementing the asset management framework through the Gas Tax Agreement to ensure that all communities have asset management plans.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.4.4 – We will continue to pursue and assist communities in accessing new federal funding for the enhancement of community government infrastructure, including implementing the asset management framework through the Gas Tax Agreement to ensure that all communities have asset management plans.

Background:

Under the new Gas Tax Agreement signed in 2014, all community governments are required to make progress in asset management over the next five years. In partnership with the Northwest Territories Association of Communities and guidance from community government representatives, Municipal and Community Affairs (MACA) developed the NWT Asset Management Strategy, designed to be flexible and adaptable so that all community governments can make progress and move forward at their own pace to ensure successful implementation of asset management practices.

The NWT Asset Management Strategy was finalized in the spring of 2016 (Milestone 1). Municipal and Community Affairs is working with 10 community governments to participate in the first pilot round of the installation of asset management software and staff training (Milestone 2). The community asset data collection and software interface design are nearing completion. MACA has also compiled a series of preventative maintenance activities through the Asset Management program (Milestone 3). 

The GNWT has begun renegotiating a new integrated bilateral agreement with the federal agreement to access Phase II of the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program fund (Milestone 5). Once the integrated bilateral agreement is signed, MACA will begin working with community governments to implement infrastructure projects (Milestone 6).

Federal funding is also available through the National Disaster Mitigation Program (NDMP) to help reduce potential damage to municipal infrastructure from reoccurring flood events. Community governments are able to use the NDMP to address rising flood risks and costs, and build a foundation for future mitigation investments.

Related Mandate Commitments:

  • Commitment 1.4.4 – We commit to assisting community governments as they innovate to address climate change by supporting the development of community government capital plans and asset planning, and ensuring that training recognizes the challenges of climate change.
  • Commitment 3.3.3 – We will assist community governments to improve energy efficiency and conservation, to reduce the impact of climate change by supporting development of community governments’ capital and asset plans, to ensure training includes challenges related to climate change, and enable community governments to use local improvement charges for the purpose of assisting residents and/or businesses in implementing energy efficiency retrofits and/or renewable energy technologies.
  • Commitment 3.5.5 - We will support community governments to access available federal funding through the Investing in Canada Plan to invest in community public infrastructure.
Release NWT Asset Management Strategy
Implement computerized Maintenance Management System in 5-10 communities
Incorporate Preventative Maintenance Activities into the Maintenance Management Tool
Phase in adoption of community government Asset Management Plans
Sign integrated bilateral agreement with the federal government
Begin implementing 10-year federal funding agreement for enhancement of community government infrastructure
 
5.4.5
We will develop a strategy to close the gap in funding levels to meet municipal core needs.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.4.5 – We will develop a strategy to close the gap in funding levels to meet municipal core needs.

Background:

In 2015, MACA completed a review of the department’s four core funding formulae. These are: Operations and Maintenance Funding (O&M), Water and Sewer Services Funding (W&S), Community Public Infrastructure Funding (CPI) and Gas Tax Funding. The Funding Review recommended a needs-based approach to funding CPI and O&M, similar to the existing W&S formula. Total need amounts for CPI replacement and O&M have been developed, as well as an estimate of the amount of Own Source Revenue each community is capable of generating (Milestone 1).

The Department of Municipal and Community Affairs (MACA) is developing a strategy to close the funding level gap (Milestone 3) and timelines to increase Community Government Funding. The strategy will also incorporate policy changes for Water and Waste, O&M, and CPI policies. (Milestone 2).

Links to Other Government Activities:

N/A

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Municipal and Community Affairs.

Implement needs-based funding approach
Release and implement new Water and Waste Policy
Develop strategy to close funding gap
 
5.4.6
We will install remote water monitoring stations in five additional communities and build three additional water treatment plants.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.4.6 – We will install remote water monitoring stations in five additional communities and build three additional water treatment plants.

Background:

The Department of Municipal and Community Affairs (MACA) utilizes a system that can monitor data from the water treatment plant and provide assistance to the community government staff. MACA has installed a DeviceLynk remote water monitoring system in six communities (Milestone 1 & 2) and plan to install 6 more systems (Milestone 3).

Remote monitoring systems allow for information from a programmable logic controller (PLC) in the water treatment plant to be viewed from a distance over the internet. The PLC is an industrial digital computer which controls and monitors processes in the water treatment plant. The DeviceLynk system allows for information being monitored by the PLC, such as chlorine levels and turbidity levels to be viewed online from a distance. The remote monitoring systems help MACA staff to spot and troubleshoot operational issues in drinking water treatment plants. MACA began installing the DeviceLynk System using the Łutselk’e water treatment plant as a pilot in early 2015.

In 2008, MACA and the Department of Public Works and Services (PWS) partnered with five communities to build their water treatment plants using a bundled approach under one contract. Utilizing GNWT Community Public Infrastructure Funding and Federal Infrastructure Funding and the technical expertise of PWS and MACA staff, the larger project was able to take advantage of cost savings. A second bundled water treatment plant project was started with an additional five communities in 2010.

Gameti, Wekweeti and Paulatuk have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the GNWT to complete the construction of three new water treatment plants in their communities and a request for proposals (RFP) was released in November 2016. Construction for the first water treatment plant will begin in 2018 (Milestone 4), the second plant is expected to begin construction in 2019 (Milestone 5) and the third plant in 2020.

Links to Other Government Activities:

The Departments of MACA, Health and Social Services (HSS), Environment and Natural Resources (ENR), and PWS work collectively to support community governments with a broad range of water quality activities. Information about NWT drinking water is available at www.nwtdrinkingwater.ca.

The bundled water treatment plant projects are successful examples of leveraging Federal funding and GNWT funding to invest in community public infrastructure. With the completion of this third bundled project, all water treatment plants in NWT communities will be compliant with national standards.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Municipal and Community Affairs.

Install remote monitoring systems in 2 communities
Install remote monitoring system in 1 community
Build water treatment plant in 1 community
Install remote monitoring systems in 2 communities
Build water treatment plant in 1 community
 
5.4.7
We will work with stakeholders to develop and propose amendments to modernize the Civil Emergency Measures Act and to revitalize the Territorial Emergency Response Plan.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.4.7 – We will work with stakeholders to develop and propose amendments to modernize the Civil Emergency Measures Act and to revitalize the Territorial Emergency Response Plan.

Background:

The Department of Municipal and Community Affairs (MACA) is revitalizing the Civil Emergency Measures Act (CEMA) to ensure it aligns with emerging and best practices elsewhere, that it reflects the NWT’s operating environment, and that it allows the Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) and community governments to respond effectively to disaster situations. A planning group representing GNWT departments has been established and is currently guiding planning efforts to update the NWT Emergency Plan.

Climate change and recent emergency events have underscored a need to improve the GNWT’s approach to emergency management. The CEMA and NWT Emergency Plan no longer provide the GNWT and community governments with adequate measures to effectively respond to disaster events which are increasing in frequency and intensity due to climate change.  

The CEMA and NWT Emergency Plan provide the framework for emergency management in the NWT. The CEMA outlines and broadly defines the respective roles and responsibilities of the GNWT and community governments in preparing for and responding to major emergencies. The NWT Emergency Plan is a procedural guide for operationalizing CEMA. It details how the GNWT is to organize and respond to emergency events.

Neither the NWT Emergency Plan nor CEMA have been thoroughly reviewed in quite some time and no longer reflect the current operating environment in the NWT and best practices and emergency management systems in other jurisdictions.

MACA is working to develop CEMA legislation during the life of the 18th Assembly. Steps to modernize CEMA and revitalize the Territorial Emergency Response Plan include:

  • developing an Emergency Management Framework (Milestone 1);
  • completion of a Mass Evacuation Plan and NWT Emergency Plan (Milestone 2);
  • implementation of a change management strategy (Milestone 3);
  • implementation of the new Emergency Management Plan and Mass Evacuation Plan
    (Milestone 4);
  • introduction of a Bill to amend CEMA (Milestone 5) and;
  • implementation of the new Emergency Management System in 2018 (Milestone 6).

Links to Other Government Activities:

N/A

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Municipal and Community Affairs.

Develop Emergency Management Framework
Complete NWT Emergency Plan and Mass Evacuation Plan
Implement change management strategy
Introduce Bill to amend the Civil Emergency Measures Act
Implement new Emergency Management System
 
5.4.8
We will develop and propose amendments to the Fire Prevention Act, and work with stakeholders to identify priorities for Community Fire Protection Plans.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.4.8 – We will develop and propose amendments to the Fire Prevention Act, and work with stakeholders to identify priorities for Community Fire Protection Plans.

Background:

The Fire Prevention Act (FPA) and Regulations provide a legislative framework for structural fire prevention in the NWT. This framework establishes the system by which the NWT prevents and addresses fire and the threat of fire to persons and property. Together, the FPA and Regulations set out the processes for:

 

• Structural fire investigation and reporting,

• Fire hazard regulation,

• Adoption and application of codes and standards, and

• The appointment process and duties of public officers.

The FPA has not been fully reviewed since the mid-1950s and has gone through very few changes since then.

MACA also remains focused on helping municipal governments improve community fire protection and prevention. Through a collaborative process, MACA and key stakeholders maintain a Community Fire Protection Plan, which provides measures to help support development and maintenance of community fire protection services.

Municipal and Community Affairs is working to develop amendments to the FPA and working with stakeholders to identify priorities for Community Fire Protection Plans during the life of the 18th Assembly. Steps to amend the FPA and Community Fire Protection Plans include:

  • completion of public engagement on issues of potential amendments to the FPA and published a ‘What We Heard’ report (Milestone 1);
  • development of standard operating procedure templates for community fire departments (Milestone 2);
  • development of a web-based fire training resources center (Milestone 3);
  • introduction of a Bill to amend the Fire Protection Act (Milestone 4); and
  • implementation of community fire protection action plans and the fire prevention program (Milestone 5 & 6)

Links to Other Government Activities:

N/A

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Municipal and Community Affairs.

Conduct public engagement on amendments to the Fire Prevention Act
Develop standard operating procedure templates for community fire departments
Develop a web-based fire training resource center
Introduce Bill to amend the Fire Prevention Act
Implement Territorial Fire Prevention Program
Implement community fire protection actions plans and fire prevention program
 
5.4.9
We will assist community governments with technical assistance in identifying energy efficiency improvements for community government buildings and taking action to improve energy efficiency.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.4.9 – We will assist community governments with technical assistance in identifying energy efficiency improvements for community government buildings and taking action to improve energy efficiency.

Background:

MACA, through its School of Community Government, has added energy efficiency content to several of its community government courses to better ensure students have an understanding of energy management, efficiencies and best practices (Milestone 1).

MACA is working with the Arctic Energy Alliance to develop methods to incorporate energy efficiencies into municipal capital plans and operational practice (Milestone 2 & 3).

In partnership with the Northwest Territories Association of Communities and guidance from community government representatives, MACA developed the NWT Asset Management Strategy, designed to be flexible and adaptable so that all community governments can make progress and move forward at their own pace to ensure successful implementation of asset management practices. The Strategy will work towards communities having the necessary support to meet basic maintenance requirements and extend the useful life of their infrastructure, as well as taking into account new building technologies, energy efficiencies and conservation and climate change. During capital planning exercises and deliberations, MACA will work with community governments to implement a checklist that will ensure renovations, retrofits and new constructions projects all have energy efficiency considerations (Milestone 4).

Links to Other Government Activities:

Good Building Practice for Northern Facilities, 2nd Edition 2009 – GNWT Public Works and Services

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Municipal and Community Affairs

Related Mandate Commitments:

  • Commitment 1.4.4 – We commit to assisting community governments as they innovate to address climate change by supporting the development of community government capital plans and asset planning, and ensuring that training recognizes the challenges of climate change.
  • Commitment 3.3.3 – We will assist community governments to improve energy efficiency and conservation, to reduce the impact of climate change by supporting development of community governments’ capital and asset plans, to ensure training includes challenges related to climate change, and enable community governments to use local improvement charges for the purpose of assisting residents and/or businesses in implementing energy efficiency retrofits and/or renewable energy technologies.
Incorporate information to improve energy efficiences in community government training
Incorporate Arctic Energy Alliance Program information through Capital Planning process
Track community actions to implement energy audit recommendations and energy retrofit projects
Implement changes to capital planning process to highlight energy efficiency best practices
 
5.4.10
We will work with community governments to find solutions to land tenure issues which present barriers to community planning.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.4.10 – We will work with community governments to find solutions to land tenure issues which present barriers to community planning.

Community governments are responsible for the control of development within community boundaries. This responsibility includes planning for future growth through the preparation of community plans or land use plans, and the control of development and land use through development controls such as zoning bylaws.

The Department of Municipal and Community Affairs (MACA) supports community governments by providing assistance with the preparation of the required bylaws, creation of development and planning tools and guides, and community government training programs.

MACA is working with NWT community governments and the Department of Lands to resolve land tenure issues within community boundaries which are hindering community governments’ ability to plan for future growth and the orderly development of communities. The steps to achieve this include identifying the communities with land tenure issues (Milestone 1), assisting community governments with updating community land use plans to identify future growth areas (Milestone 2), and MACA and the Department of Lands working closely with the identified community governments to develop a strategy to determine how and when tenure issues can be resolved (Milestone 3).

Related Mandate Commitments:

  • Commitment 3.1.2 – We will support community-based planning to help make land available for the construction of affordable housing and to support community governments in dealing with derelict properties in their communities.
Identify community governments with community growth issues related to land tenure
Assist community governments with updating community land use plans and identify future growth areas and associated land tenure issues
Work with community governments to develop a strategy to determine how and when tenure issues can be resolved
Supporting initiatives designed to increase the number of women running for elected office in the NWT.
 
5.5.1
We will support the delivery of workshops that help to get women into politics.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.5.1 – We will support the delivery of workshops that help to get women into politics.

In the NWT, women have largely been underrepresented in elected positions at all levels of governments. The Campaign School for Women offered through the Status of Women Council has provided support and relevant information about elections and campaigning as a woman in the NWT to prospective female candidates who are have considered running in past territorial elections.

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.5.2 – We will support a communications campaign to increase the participation of women in politics.
  • Commitment 5.3.3 – We will improve gender equity in appointments to all territorial boards and agencies.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Continue to collect elections data and publish results on website (ongoing
Begin work with partners to develop workshops
Deliver campaign schools for women in Inuvik and Hay River
 
5.5.2
We will support a communications campaign to increase the participation of women in politics.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.5.2 – We will support a communications campaign to increase the participation of women in politics.

In the NWT, women have largely been underrepresented in elected positions at all levels of governments. The Campaign School for Women offered through the Status of Women Council has provided support and relevant information about elections and campaigning as a woman in the NWT to prospective female candidates who are have considered running in past territorial elections.

The GNWT, working in partnership with the Status of Women Council of the NWT, will develop a communications campaign aimed at increasing the participation of women in politics.

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.5.1 – We will support the delivery of workshops that help to get women into politics.
  • Commitment 5.3.3 – We will improve gender equity in appointments to all territorial boards and agencies.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Begin developing communications campaign to encourage women to seek political office and/or serve on public boards
Implement communications campaign
 
5.5.3
We will improve gender equity in appointments to all territorial boards and agencies.
Background Note

GOVERNANCE

Commitment 5.5.3 – We will improve gender equity in appointments to territorial boards and agencies.

The GNWT Public Board Appointments website was revamped in fall 2016 (Milestone 1). The new website provides up-to-date information on vacancies and it help solicit expressions of interest from persons interested in serving on NWT public boards.

The GNWT Boards Policy, which guides Ministerial and Cabinet decision making on board appointments, was updated in August 2017 to ensure good public management of the appointments process and to better reflect the government's commitments in the Mandate (Milestone 2).

The Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs (EIA) is working to develop (Milestone 3) and implement (Milestone 4) a communications plan to increase gender equity in appointments to territorial boards and agencies.

EIA facilitates and tracks appointments to GNWT boards as well as GNWT nominations to serve on boards appointed by other governments, in order to:

  • ensure a transparent process for appointments
  • identify any board quorum issues
  • monitor status on the government's commitment to gender equity

Related Mandate Commitments

  • Commitment 5.5.1 - We will support the delivery of workshops that help to get women into politics.
  • Commitment 5.5.2 - We will support a communications campaign to increase the participation of women in politics.

For more information about this initiative, please contact the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs.

Update Public Board Appointments website to provide information on board appointments and current vacancies
Revise GNWT Boards Policy to include principle of gender equity
Begin developing communications campaign to encourage women to seek political office and/or serve on public boards
Implement communications campaign