On February 7th, 2022, the Oversight Committee on Legislative Development (OSC) issued a press release that provided an update on the development of three Akwesasne Laws: the Cannabis Law, Emergency Management Law, and Akwesasne Election Law amendments. 


The Working Task Groups (WTG) have been working diligently on the three laws for Phase 1 Development of the Legislative Enactment Procedural Regulations (LEPR). The Cannabis Law and Emergency Management Law are now ready to proceed to legal review. The OSC met on March 21st, 2022 to formally accept the draft laws from the Working Task Groups and submit the laws to Legal Counsel for a legal review. 


In accordance with the LEPR, once the legal review has concluded, a line-by-line review will be conducted with Council. Phase II – Council may accept the draft law “in principle,” moving the law to Phase III Community Consultation/Engagement. 


The Akwesasne Election Law amendment WTG has been working on sections of the law, namely: composition, eligibility criteria, and term of office. 


Updates on the law development process will continue to be provided. 


Note: Notices will be provided of engagement dates with times and locations, please monitor social media and Indian Time newspaper. 


Prioritizing Legislative Development: The Oversight Committee has a mandate to develop three laws annually. As a result, they will be engaging the community, organization (MCA Directors), and government (Grand Chief & Council) through a survey. The survey questions will gather opinions on the needs for legislative development priorities for new laws, laws in draft, and laws that require amendments. This will allow the OSC to establish a list of the top three needs for legislative development priorities for the 2022/2023 fiscal year. Please watch your mail for this survey. 


Repeal of Laws: The Oversight Committee has also been reviewing the Akwesasne Laws currently on the MCA Law Registry. There are several laws that are administrative in nature. As well, there are laws that may no longer be necessary to govern Akwesasne. Work has begun to look at the process to repeal laws, ensuring the law will be repealed by the same process it was implemented. 


For further information, please contact the Justice Coordinator at connie.lazore@akwesasne.ca