If passed, this act will empower Metis Settlements to create sustainable and self-sufficient communities to support future generations. Alberta’s government will update the 30-year-old legislation to set Metis Settlements on the road to self-determination.
“Modernizing the Metis Settlements Act helps Alberta’s government act on the wishes of Metis Settlement residents who want governance and financial accountability. It is vital that Metis Settlements have greater control over their own future for success and sustainability. Having the governance structure and financial accountability they have asked for allows them to control their destiny by building a stronger foundation of self-government.”
During the past year, Minister Wilson and Indigenous Relations officials have met with the Metis Settlements and their organizing group – the Metis Settlements General Council – 19 times to discuss amendments to the act.
The proposed bill will:
- Increase Metis Settlement council responsibility to charge for services such as water, sewer and roads.
- Leave it to Settlement councils to determine the number of elected councillors needed – from a minimum of three to a maximum of five.
- Reduce the size of the Metis Settlement General Council executive from four officers to a maximum of two.
- Remove the minister of Indigenous Relations from any decision-making powers related to the Metis Settlements General Council’s financial policies.
This is the right time to modernize the act, with the Metis Settlements General Council elections in October. If passed, the act will clarify the number of council members and their responsibilities before elections begin.
- Alberta’s government transferred 1.25 million acres of land to the Metis Settlements and has contributed nearly half a billion dollars since 1990.
- The eight Metis Settlements have a total population of approximately 5,600 people.