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Copyright 2000: Queen’s Printer,
St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada

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Revised Statutes of Newfoundland 1990


CHAPTER M-12

AN ACT RESPECTING THE ACQUISITION OF RIGHTS TO MINERALS IN THE PROVINCE

Analysis

1. Short title

2. Interpretation

3. Administration

4. Application

5. Report of search

6. Registration

7. Classification of lands

8. Transfer orders

9. Ground staked licences

10. Savings for physical staking

11. Right to stake

12. Limited right to search

13. Order permitting search

14. Compensation

15. Confidentiality of information

16. Mineral claims recorder

17. Duties of recorder

18. Reports of mineral surveys

19. Inspections

20. Right to licences

21. Application for licence; acceptance

22. Issuing of licence

23. Exclusive right to explore

24. Assignment permitted

25. Surrender of licence

26. Cancellation of a licence

27. Effect of surrender

28. Extension of licence

29. Certificate of compliance

30. Disposition of exempted lands

31. Mining lease

32. Waiving of obligations

33. Right to a demise of surface lands

34. Power of government to acquire land

35. Cancellation of a lease

36. Right to move chattels

37. Mineral Rights Adjudication Board

38. Jurisdiction of board

39. Adjudication

40. Appeal to Trial Division

41. Regulations

42. Offence

43. Out of production mines

44. No compensation

Schedule


Short title

1. This Act may be cited as the Mineral Act.

1975-76 No44 s1

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Interpretation

2. (1) In this Act,

(a) "assessment work" means the prescribed work required to be carried out under a licence;

(b) "board" means the Mineral Rights Adjudication Board appointed under section 37;

(c) "certificate" means a certificate of compliance issued under section 29;

(d) "department" means the Department of Mines and Energy;

(e) "lands open to staking" has the meaning ascribed to that term by paragraph 7(1)(a);

(f) "mineral" means a naturally occurring inorganic substance including coal and minerals contained in mine tailings, but does not include

(i) water,

(ii) quarry materials as defined in the Quarry Materials Act,

(iii) stratified deposits other than coal from which oil can be extracted by destructive distillation, or

(iv) petroleum as defined in the Petroleum and Natural Gas Act;

(g) "minister" means the Minister of Mines and Energy;

(h) "recorder" means the mineral claims recorder appointed under subsection 16(1); and

(i) "reserved lands" has the meaning ascribed to that term by paragraph 7(1)(b).

(2) A reference in this Act

(a) to a licence, is a reference to a ground staked licence, a map staked licence or a reserved area licence, as the context admits, issued or extended under this Act; and

(b) to a lease, is a reference to a mining lease issued or extended8 under this Act.

(3) An order made under this Act may be revoked, varied or amended in the same manner as it is made.

1975-76 No44 s2; 1987 c28 Sch C; 1989 c23 Sch B; 1990 c17 s1

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Administration

3. (1) The minister shall prepare a report of all licences and leases issued under this Act during the 12 months immediately before March 31 in each year, and shall lay the report before the Legislature within 3 months after the end of the 12 month period for which it is prepared, if the Legislature is then in session, and if it is not, then within 15 days after the beginning of the next session.

(2) The report under subsection (1) shall contain the number of licences and leases issued during the relevant 12 month period, the names of all licensees and lessees to whom licences and leases are issued, the location and the area or approximate area of land covered by each licence and lease.

1975-76 No44 s3

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Application

4. (1) Except where this Act provides to the contrary, this Act applies to all land and land under water within the province, the minerals, in, on or under which, are vested in the Crown, except

(a) the land described in the Schedule to the Labrador Lands Reservation Act;

(b) all land and land under water, the minerals, in, on or under which, are subject to a licence, permit, lease or agreement, relating to or affecting those minerals on July 12, 1977 because of being issued or continued under the Act repealed by this Act or by or under another Act, but only until expiry of the current term of the licence, permit, lease or agreement, notwithstanding a covenant, an undertaking or a right arising in respect of an extension or renewal of the term created in the licence, permit, lease or agreement; and

(c) all land and land under water the minerals of which are exempted from the application of this Act by the regulations.

(2) Notwithstanding paragraph (1)(b), this Act applies to land where there are, in, on or under it, minerals that are the property of the Crown.

(3) The holder of a licence, permit, lease or agreement referred to in paragraph (1)(b) who wishes to obtain a licence, mining lease or demise of surface rights under this Act may, during the currency of the licence, permit, lease or agreement, apply to the minister for a licence, mining lease or demise of surface rights to the land, and land under water, the minerals, in, on or under which are subject to the licence, permit, lease or agreement relating to it and the holder of the licence, permit, lease or agreement who so applies has a right to the issuing of, and the minister shall issue, a licence, mining lease or demise of surface rights under this Act for the period that is prescribed or permitted under this Act, provided that the terms, provisions and conditions of or pertaining to the licence, permit, lease or agreement have been complied with during its currency.

(4) The provisions of this Act, except where they refer to or relate to a licence under this Act, shall apply to a mining lease issued under subsection (3).

(5) Paragraph (1)(b) and subsections (2), (3) and (4) come into force on a day to be proclaimed by the Lieutenant-Governor in Council.

1975-76 No44 s4; 1980 c35 s1; 1990 c17 s2

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Report of search

5. (1) A person who searches for minerals in, on or under land and land under water, whether or not the minerals are vested in the Crown, or who is engaged in pre-production and development activities in relation to a mineral deposit shall, on or before March 15 of the year following the calendar year in which the search is carried out or the activities are engaged in, submit a report to the minister, in a form approved by the minister, containing

(a) the nature and type of work carried out;

(b) the costs incurred;

(c) the locations of the active projects;

(d) the name and address of the person carrying out the work;

(e) the number of persons employed and a summary of the salaries and wages paid; and

(f) a summary of all other expenditures.

(2) Where a search referred to in subsection (1) is done by diamond drilling or other boring method, the report shall contain, in the manner prescribed by regulation

(a) a copy of the logs of each boring including its location, direction, inclination and the geological nature of the rocks penetrated;

(b) a copy of the record of samples taken and the results of assays made of those samples;

(c) a map showing the geographical location and elevations of the collar of each boring;

(d) a copy of sections, profiles or horizontal projections of each boring;

(e) the location and disposition of diamond drill core or cuttings; and

(f) the name and address of the person who performed the diamond drilling or other boring.

(3) Subsection (2) does not apply where, in the opinion of the minister, a report containing the information required under that subsection has been submitted to him or her.

(4) A person who intends to conduct a search for minerals by diamond drilling or other boring method shall submit his or her plans, and amendments to plans already submitted, to the department not later than 10 days before the beginning of the drilling activities.

1980 c35 s1; 1990 c17 s3

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Registration

6. (1) Notwithstanding another Act or law, a transfer, assignment, pledge, mortgage, lease or other conveyance or assignment of, or agreement relating to, minerals or rights to or in respect of minerals in, on or under land and land under water wherever situated in the province, whether or not that land and water is vested in the Crown, is not valid and does not have an effect in law until it is registered by the recorder and the registration fee prescribed by regulation is paid.

(2) The recorder may refuse to register a document described in subsection (1) where a party to the document is, in the opinion of the recorder, in contravention of this Act or the regulations at the time the document is presented for registration.

(3) When the recorder registers a document described in subsection (1) he or she shall issue a receipt evidencing the registration and that receipt is, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, proof that the document has been registered.

1980 c35 s2

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Classification of lands

7. (1) This Act applies to

(a) lands which are lands open to staking, that is to say, lands in respect of which the recorder has a duty to issue to a person with respect to the minerals in, on or under those lands

(i) a ground staked licence, or

(ii) a map staked licence, or

if the provisions of this Act and the regulations for the issuing of either or both of those licences are complied with; and

(b) lands which are reserved lands, that is to say, lands in respect of which the recorder has a duty to issue to a person with respect to the minerals in, on or under those lands a reserved area licence if the provisions of this Act and the regulations for the issuing of that licence are complied with.

(2) All lands which were open to staking under the law existing before July 12, 1977 are considered to be lands open to staking for the purposes of this Act.

(3) All lands which were reserved lands under the law existing before July 12, 1977 are considered to be reserved lands for the purposes of this Act.

1975-76 No44 s6

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Transfer orders

8. (1) The minister may, by order published in the Gazette, declare lands

(a) which are lands open to staking to be lands which are reserved lands; and

(b) which are reserved lands to be lands open for staking,

and, upon the operable date of that order as provided in subsection (2), the lands described in the order are considered to be lands open to staking or reserved lands.

(2) An order made under this section is operable

(a) in the case of lands declared to be reserved lands, on the date of publication of the order; and

(b) in the case of lands declared to be lands open for staking, 31 clear days after the date of the publication of the order.

1975-76 No44 s7; 1983 c22 s1

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Ground staked licences

9. (1) Ground staked licences may be issued in respect of all lands open to staking.

(2) The minister may, by order, publish in the Gazette a description of that part of the lands open to staking in respect of which the recorder shall issue map staked licences only, and following that publication,

(a) a ground staked licence shall not be issued in respect of a part of land so described; and

(b) the recorder shall issue map staked licences only in respect of that land.

1975-76 No44 s8

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Savings for physical staking

10. Notwithstanding sections 8 and 9, an applicant for a ground staked licence who has physically staked a part of the land which is the subject of an order made under those sections before the publication of it in the Gazette may obtain a ground staked licence to the area staked if the provisions of this Act and the regulations for the obtaining of ground staked licences are complied with.

1975-76 No44 s9

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Right to stake

11. (1) A person may stake out a claim to minerals in, on or under land where

(a) the minerals have been reserved by the Crown in a sale, grant or lease of the land; or

(b) the title to the land has been acquired by a person by adverse possession.

(2) Notwithstanding subsection (1), a person may only stake out a claim to minerals in, on or under land where the land is not at the time

(a) staked or eligible to be recorded as a mineral claim; or

(b) withdrawn from staking by an Act or a regulation made under an Act.

1990 c17 s4

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Limited right to search

12. (1) A person shall not search, prospect or explore for minerals or stake a claim to minerals in or upon land to which this Act applies

(a) if the minerals are subject to a licence or lease in favour of another person, without the consent of that person;

(b) in the case of land vested in the Crown in right of the province, other than Crown land within the meaning of the Crown Lands Act, unless the consent of the minister is obtained; or

(c) in the case of lands, administration and control of which are vested in the Crown in right of Canada, unless the consent of the Government of Canada is obtained.

(2) A person shall not search, prospect or explore for minerals in or upon land to which this Act applies not vested in the Crown unless the consent of the owner, lessee or other person having a legal or equitable interest in that land is obtained.

1975-76 No44 s10; 1977 c58 s1; 1983 c22 s3;
1990 c17 s5

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Order permitting search

13. Notwithstanding subsection 12(2), where an owner, lessee, or other person having a legal or equitable interest in land

(a) refuses to give his or her consent as needed under subsection 12(2); or

(b) is unable to be found to give his or her consent,

the Lieutenant-Governor in Council may by order dispense with the need for the consent of the person having an interest, and upon the making of that order the person named in the order may enter the land described in the order for the purpose of searching, prospecting, exploring for minerals in, under or upon that land as if that person had the consent of the person who has the interest.

1990 c17 s6

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Compensation

14. (1) A person who searches, prospects or explores for minerals or stakes a claim to minerals in, on or under land not vested in the Crown shall pay compensation to the owner, lessee or other person having an interest in the land for injury or damage caused to the surface rights by the searching, prospecting, exploring or staking.

(2) The amount of compensation payable under subsection (1) may, in default of agreement between the parties, be fixed by a judge of the Trial Division and the judge may also determine the time and manner of payment.

(3) A party who wishes to have the amount of the compensation fixed by a judge under subsection (2) shall, before making application to the judge, give to all interested persons 14 days' written notice of particulars of the application.

(4) Where the compensation fixed under subsection (2) exceeds $1,000 either party may appeal to the Court of Appeal from the order of the judge, otherwise an appeal does not lie against the order.

(5) A judge before whom a proceeding is taken under subsection (2) may order a person from whom the compensation is claimed to give security for the payment of an amount which may be fixed and may, pending the termination of the proceeding, prohibit further searching, prospecting, exploring or staking by the person from whom the compensation is claimed or by a person claiming under him or her.

(6) Where an order of prohibition is made under subsection (5), the time within which the person is required to perform work or to file reports and statements under a requirement of this Act, the regulations or a licence is extended for a period of 90 days or the period during which the order of prohibition is in effect, whichever is the lesser.

1990 c17 s6

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Confidentiality of information

15. (1) Subject to an Act of the province relating to the compilation of data, completion of statistics or an agreement between this province and another province or the Government of Canada relating to the exchange of confidential information under that Act, information that is required to be given under this Act shall be made available only

(a) to persons permitted by this Act to receive that information or authorized by the minister to receive that information;

(b) to persons that the person giving the information may consent to receiving the information; or

(c) for the purpose of assessment or imposition of a tax imposed after receipt of the information upon the person giving the information.

(2) Except with respect to information compiled under section 5, subsection (1) stops applying to information after the expiry of 3 years from the day that the information was given under this Act.

(3) Notwithstanding subsections (1) and (2), where information has been given under this Act in respect of a mineral that is subject to a licence or lease from the Crown, that information may be made available by the minister after the termination, surrender or expiration of the licence or lease regardless of the time when the information was given.

(4) Subsection (1) does not apply to information of the following kinds:

(a) the numbers of people employed;

(b) the amount and nature of work done;

(c) expenditures of money;

(d) the qualifications or skills of persons who are employed;

(e) the residences or places of origin of persons who are employed; or

(f) information that in the opinion of the minister is similar to the information described in paragraphs (a) to (e).

(5) Notwithstanding a provision contained in another Act or in an agreement, whether or not it was passed or entered into before July 12, 1977, respecting the confidentiality of information provided to the department under that Act or agreement, this section applies to that information as if it had been provided under this Act.

1975-76 No44 s12; 1977 c58 s2; 1980 c35 s4;
1983 c22 s5; 1990 c17 s7

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Mineral claims recorder

16. (1) There shall be appointed as an officer of the department in the manner provided by law, a mineral claims recorder to implement the powers, functions and duties conferred upon the recorder under this Act and to help the minister in the proper administration of this Act.

(2) There may be employed as officers of the department those officers, clerks and other employees that the minister considers necessary to help the minister and the recorder in the proper administration of this Act.

1975-76 No44 s13

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Duties of recorder

17. (1) The recorder shall carry out and implement the powers, functions and duties conferred or imposed on the recorder by this Act and the regulations, and in addition shall keep and maintain

(a) a register of all applications made under this Act for licences and leases;

(b) a register of licences;

(c) a register of leases;

(d) a register of transfers and mortgages; and

(e) other registers that may be prescribed for the registration of documents issued under this Act.

(2) It is the duty of the recorder to issue all licences under this Act, and to keep and maintain copies of those licences as well as all leases issued by the minister under this Act together with other documents that may be prescribed by regulation.

(3) Members of the public have, upon payment of a fee, which may be prescribed by regulation, a right to enter the offices of the department at reasonable times to view the registers referred to in subsection (1) and to examine copies of all licences and leases, and of other documents kept and maintained by the recorder under subsection (2) that may be prescribed by regulation to be open to view.

(4) The recorder shall, upon payment of the fee prescribed by regulation, issue to a person making application for it, a copy of a licence, lease or other document open to view by members of the public, or an extract of an entry made in the registers kept and maintained under subsection (1).

1975-76 No44 s14

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Reports of mineral surveys

18. (1) A person, other than the holder of a valid licence or lease, who conducts a mineral survey in, on or under land to which this Act applies, and does not within 12 months from the date of the completion of the mineral survey acquire a licence to the land surveyed or a part of the land surveyed, shall, within 12 months from the date of the completion of the survey, submit a detailed report of the survey in a form approved by the minister, containing matters which the minister may specify, including the cost of the survey, the location of and class of a mineral found in, on or under the land.

(2) A person who fails to provide a report of a survey required under subsection (1) is guilty of an offence under this Act.

1975-76 No44 s15; 1980 c35 s5; 1982 c56 s1

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Inspections

19. The minister, or a person authorized by him or her, may at a reasonable hour and without prior notification, enter upon land to which this Act applies in order

(a) to inspect that land and the activities being carried out on the land for the purposes of ensuring that this Act and the regulations are being complied with; or

(b) to carry out geological, geochemical or geophysical surveys.

1980 c35 s6

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Right to licences

20. A natural person 19 years of age or more, and a corporation has the right to obtain

(a) a ground staked licence and map staked licence to land open to staking; and

(b) a reserved area licence to land which is reserved land.

1975-76 No44 s16

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Application for licence; acceptance

21. (1) An application for a licence in a form which the minister may approve must be delivered to the recorder, but an application shall not be accepted by the recorder unless

(a) it is completed in a manner satisfactory to the recorder;

(b) it is accompanied by documentation and licence fees that may be prescribed by regulation;

(c) in the case of an application for a map staked licence or reserved area licence, it is accompanied by a security deposit of an amount which may be prescribed by regulation;

(d) in the case of an application for a ground staked licence, the applicant has complied with all provisions of the regulations respecting

(i) the purchase and use of tags, and

(ii) physical staking of the surface of the land for which the application is made within 30 clear days before the date of the application;

(e) another application has not been accepted for the same land;

(f) another licence or lease is not in force under this Act with respect to the land;

(g) the land that has been applied for is not the subject of a grievance filed under section 39; and

(h) the applicant has complied in all respects with this Act and the regulations.

(2) Upon acceptance of an application for a map staked licence or a reserved area licence, the recorder shall stamp the date and hour of receipt on the application and that date and hour determines the priority of applications for the right to a licence under subsection (1).

(3) The true date and hour stated in an application for a ground staked licence accepted by the recorder as the date when the surface of the land was physically staked determines the priority of applications for the right to a ground staked licence under subsection (1).

(4) Where the same date and hour is stated in 2 or more applications as the date when the surface of the land was physically staked, the date and hour when the applications are received by the recorder determines the priority of the applications for the right to a ground staked licence under subsection (1).

1975-76 No44 s17; 1980 c35 s7; 1990 c17 s8

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Issuing of licence

22. (1) Upon acceptance of an application for a licence, the recorder shall as soon as practicable issue the licence to the applicant.

(2) Notwithstanding subsection (1), a licence shall not be issued by the recorder until the expiry of 30 days from the date of acceptance of the application.

(3) A licence issued by the recorder

(a) shall contain a plan or description of the area of land covered by the licence; and

(b) is issued subject to this Act and the regulations, the terms and conditions set out in the Schedule and other terms and conditions that may be set out in the licence or that may be prescribed by regulation.

(4) Notwithstanding the area of land described in the licence, the boundaries of the area of land covered by the licence are those delimited by the posts and lines established in accordance with this Act and the regulations.

1975-76 No44 s18; 1980 c35 s8; 1983 c22 s6

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Exclusive right to explore

23. (1) Subject to the terms under which a licence is issued, the licensee has the exclusive right to explore for minerals, in, on or under the area of land described in the licence from the date of issuing for the period of

(a) in the case of a licence covering lands open to staking, 5 years; and

(b) in the case of a licence covering reserved lands, 4 years.

(2) A licence confers no right to remove minerals except for the purpose of sampling, assaying and testing, and a licensee who removes or sells minerals in contravention of this section

(a) commits a material breach of the terms of the licence; and

(b) is guilty of an offence under this Act.

1975-76 No44 s19

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Assignment permitted

24. Nothing in this Act shall prevent the holder of a licence from transferring, assigning, mortgaging, pledging or conveying that licence to another person if section 6 is complied with, but a transfer, assignment, mortgage, pledge or conveyance of the minerals in, on or under part of the area covered by the licence is not valid unless the written approval of the minister is obtained and is filed with the document presented for registration under section 6.

1975-76 No44 s20

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Surrender of licence

25. (1) Nothing in this Act shall prevent the holder of a licence from surrendering the licence or part of the area covered by a licence during its currency by delivering a notice of surrender to the recorder, but

(a) notwithstanding the surrender, the licensee shall deliver to the minister copies of all information and reports in his or her possession respecting exploration carried out before the date of the surrender;

(b) where part of the area covered by a ground staked licence is surrendered, the boundaries of the area being retained must be tagged and physically staked in the manner required by paragraph 21(1)(d); and

(c) where part of the area covered by a map staked licence is surrendered, all the area being retained must fall within the boundaries of the original description contained in the licence.

(2) A surrender of part of the land contained in a reserved area licence is not valid unless

(a) more than 50% of the total area covered by the licence is retained by the licensee, where the surrender is made during the 1st 12 months of the currency of the licence; and

(b) more than 25% of the total area originally covered by the licence is retained by the licensee where the surrender is made after the end of the 1st 12 months of the currency of the licence.

1975-76 No44 s21; 1977 c58 s3; 1980 c35 s9;
1990 c17 s9

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Cancellation of a licence

26. (1) The minister may cancel a licence issued under this Act upon being satisfied

(a) that the licensee is in breach of or has failed to fulfil, perform or observe the terms and conditions of or pertaining to the licence;

(b) that the licence was issued as a result of or consequent upon a material misrepresentation by the applicant for the licence; or

(c) that the licensee is insolvent, declared bankrupt or has committed an act of bankruptcy.

(2) The minister shall cause the recorder to notify the licensee immediately, either by personal service effected by the sheriff or by registered mail, of the cancellation made under subsection (1), and that notification shall state the grounds upon which the cancellation was made and the reasons for that cancellation.

1975-76 No44 s22

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Effect of surrender

27. (1) Where a licence, lease or grant is surrendered or cancelled under this or another Act, or where part of the land contained within the area of a licence, lease or grant is surrendered or the rights to it cancelled, all the minerals in, on or under the land affected by the cancellation or surrender, following the disposition of adjudication proceedings to which the licensee, lessee or owner is entitled to under section 39, are available for application in accordance with this Act as if no licence, lease or grant had been issued in respect of that land.

(2) Land shall not be made available for application under subsection (1) until after the expiry of a period of publication or display by the recorder of the surrender or cancellation of land, that may be prescribed by regulation.

1980 c35 s10

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Extension of licence

28. (1) A holder of a licence who wishes to have an extension of the term of the licence must insure that an application for the extension is received by the minister before the date of expiry of that licence and has a right to that extension for a period not exceeding 5 years either

(a) for the total area of land covered by the licence; or

(b) for the lesser area that may be contained in the application for the extension if the area is tagged and physically staked in the manner required by paragraph 21(1)(d) or within the boundaries of the original description contained in the licence.

(2) Notwithstanding subsection (1), an extension of the term of a licence shall not be granted under this section unless the licensee has complied with all the terms, provisions and conditions of or pertaining to the licence during its currency and has filed with the recorder a report of the assessment work and account of expenditures required by Condition 3 of the Schedule for the final year of the original term of the licence.

(3) Notwithstanding subsection (1), a licence extended under this section is subject to the following conditions during the period of extension

(a) that the licensee shall pay to the recorder in advance an annual rental calculated in accordance with the formulae prescribed by regulation for the area of land covered by the licence;

(b) that for each 12 month period of the extension, the licensee shall carry out the assessment work prescribed by regulation for the extension instead of the assessment work required for the original term of the licence; and

(c) fulfilment of all terms and conditions of or pertaining to the licence as originally granted.

1975-76 No44 s24; 1990 c17 s10

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Certificate of compliance

29. (1) The holder of a licence may apply to the minister for a certificate stating that all the terms, provisions and conditions of or pertaining to the licence for a year during its currency have been complied with, and the minister, upon being satisfied that the facts to be contained in the certificate are true, shall issue the certificate to the licensee upon payment of a fee that may be prescribed by regulation.

(2) In the absence of fraud or mistake, a certificate issued under subsection (1) is final and conclusive evidence that the holder of the licence has complied with all the terms, provisions and conditions of or pertaining to the licence for the year covered by the certificate.

1975-76 No44 s25

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Disposition of exempted lands

30. (1) Mineral rights in, on or under land and land under water that are exempted from the application of this Act by the regulations may be disposed of by the Lieutenant-Governor in Council by public tender through notice in the Gazette and a newspaper of general circulation throughout the province as mineral rights available to be licenced.

(2) A disposition by the Lieutenant-Governor in Council under subsection (1) may be by way of licence, on terms and conditions at least equivalent to those applicable to an extended ground staked licence granted under this Act, or mining lease on terms and conditions at least equivalent to a mining lease otherwise granted under this Act and for a term not to exceed 25 years.

(3) A person who holds a licence under this section may apply for a mining lease under this Act, on terms and conditions at least equivalent to a mining lease otherwise granted under this Act and for a term not to exceed 25 years.

1980 c35 s11; 1990 c17 s11

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Mining lease

31. (1) A holder of a licence who wishes to obtain a mining lease of the unalienated minerals in, on or under the land or part of the land covered by the licence must insure that an application for the lease is received by the minister during the currency of the licence.

(2) A holder of a licence who delivers an application under subsection (1) has a right to the issuing of a mining lease for the reasonable period, not exceeding 25 years, that the minister may determine, but only if the following provisions of this section are complied with.

(3) A person shall not obtain a mining lease under this section unless

(a) all the terms, provisions and conditions of or pertaining to the licence held by the applicant for the lease have been complied with during its currency; and

(b) where the applicant for a lease is the holder of a ground staked licence,

(i) a survey of the perimeter of the area covered by the application has been carried out by a qualified land surveyor,

(ii) a certified plan of the survey with the surveyor's notes and a proper description of the land accompanies the application for the lease, and

(iii) the land is marked in the manner prescribed by regulation.

(4) Notwithstanding subsection (3), where the licence held by the applicant for a lease has existed for a period of 3 years or less, a lease shall not be issued under this Act until all the assessment work required for the 1st 3 years of the licence has been completed and all reports required by this Act and the regulations respecting that assessment work and accounts of expenditure are made for those years.

(5) A lease issued under this Act

(a) confers upon the lessee the exclusive right to develop, extract, remove, deal with, sell, mortgage, or otherwise dispose of all the unalienated minerals, or those specified in the lease, in, on or under the land described in the lease;

(b) must be signed by the minister and the person holding as lessee;

(c) is subject to the following conditions:

(i) that the lessee pays in advance an annual rental of an amount calculated in accordance with the formulae prescribed by regulation for the area of land to which it applies,

(ii) that the lessee shall start mineral production capable of extracting a mineral or a mineral ore in saleable quantities within 5 years from the date of the beginning of the lease and maintain that production without cessation except for a period totalling 5 years during the remainder of the period covered by the lease,

(iii) that the minister, and other officers of the department that are authorized by the minister, have a right at reasonable times to enter a mine being operated by the lessee or land held by the lessee in connection with the working of the minerals demised by the lease and to search, view, inspect and inquire into the condition of that mine or land and to inspect the books of account relating to the working of a mine and minerals or mineral ores being extracted from the land described in the lease,

(iv) that the lessee fulfils and observes the requirements of all statutes of the province and of Canada and regulations, orders and directions made under those statutes in respect of or relating to the premises demised by the lease, including environmental control, maintenance of health, building and operational standards, the making of returns, reports and the doing or refraining from doing a matter or thing required to be done or not to be done under or by those statutes, and

(v) that the lessee complies with all provisions prescribed by regulation pertaining to the lease; and

(d) may be assigned or, in relation to a specific mineral or class of mineral, sublet to a person with the consent of the minister, which consent shall not be unreasonably withheld.

1975-76 No44 s26; 1990 c17 s12

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Waiving of obligations

32. The Lieutenant-Governor in Council shall

(a) upon being satisfied upon reasonable cause shown that a lessee is unable to comply with the obligations contained in subparagraph 31(5)(c)(ii), relieve the lessee of the obligations for a period and on terms and conditions that the Lieutenant-Governor in Council thinks appropriate; and

(b) upon receipt of a written application from the lessee no later than 3 months before the expiration of the term of the lease or 3 months before the expiration of a subsequent term contemplated by this paragraph, and upon being satisfied that the terms and conditions of the lease have been complied with before the application, renew the lease for a further term not exceeding 10 years from the date of expiry of the original term of the lease, or before the extension upon terms and conditions that the Lieutenant-Governor in Council thinks appropriate.

1975-76 No44 s27

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Right to a demise of surface lands

33. (1) Where the minister is obliged to issue a lease under this Act in respect of minerals in, on or under land the surface of which is vested in the Crown, or access to which cannot reasonably be obtained except through lands vested in the Crown, the Lieutenant-Governor in Council shall issue to the lessee upon terms and conditions that the Lieutenant-Governor in Council may determine, a demise of surface or other rights, including rights-of-way that may be reasonably necessary to enable the lessee to implement the obligations imposed upon the lessee under the lease and to carry out mineral exploration, mining operations or mineral processing and development in, on or under the land covered by the lease.

(2) A demise of surface or other rights, including rights-of-way granted under this section, shall not extend beyond the period covered by the lease.

1975-76 No44 s28

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Power of government to acquire land

34. (1) The Lieutenant-Governor in Council may acquire in the name of the Crown either by private bargain or by compulsory acquisition land or an interest in land in, on or under which minerals are leased by the minister or access to which cannot reasonably be obtained except over or through land, the appropriate interest in which is vested in the Crown, but only to the extent that the land or interest may be required to enable the lessee to implement the obligations imposed under the lease and to carry out mineral exploration, mining operations or mineral processing and development in, on or under those lands.

(2) Where land or an interest in land is acquired compulsorily under subsection (1), the Expropriation Act applies in all respects as if the land, or interest, were acquired under that Act.

1975-76 No44 s29

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Cancellation of a lease

35. (1) The minister may cancel a lease issued under this Act and all demises of surface or other rights made or given under section 33 upon being satisfied

(a) that the lessee has failed to fulfil, perform or observe the terms and conditions of or pertaining to the lease or demise;

(b) that the lease or demise was issued as a result of or consequent upon a material misrepresentation by the applicant for the lease or demise; or

(c) that the lessee is insolvent, declared bankrupt or has committed an act of bankruptcy.

(2) The minister shall cause the recorder to notify the lessee immediately by personal service effected by the sheriff or by registered mail of the cancellation made under subsection (1) and that notification shall state the grounds upon which the cancellation was made and the reasons for that cancellation.

(3) Upon notification of a cancellation being made under this section, the minerals in, on or under the land described in the lease and those surface or other rights conferred by a demise shall stop and revert to the Crown and may be applied in accordance with this Act, subject always to decision following adjudication under section 39.

1975-76 No44 s30

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Right to move chattels

36. (1) Upon the termination or cancellation of a demise of surface or other rights granted under section 33, the holder of the demise may take from the land to which it relates machinery, chattels and other personal property within 6 months after the date of termination or within the extended period that may be fixed by the minister.

(2) Property referred to in subsection (1) which remains on the land after the expiration of the period permitted by that subsection for removal becomes the property of the Crown.

(3) Where the minister incurs an expense

(a) in rehabilitating the surface of land demised under section 33 or subject to a mining lease under section 31 where a lessee fails to do so as required by the terms of his or her lease; or

(b) in disposing of property referred to in subsection (2),

that expense constitutes a debt due the Crown.

1975-76 No44 s31; 1990 c17 s13

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Mineral Rights Adjudication Board

37. (1) There shall be a board, known as the Mineral Rights Adjudication Board, appointed by the Lieutenant-Governor in Council consisting of 3 persons, at least 1 of whom is a barrister, who shall be chairperson, and 1 of whom is experienced in mining.

(2) The members of the board shall

(a) hold office for a period of 3 years from the date of their appointment, and shall be eligible for reappointment;

(b) carry out the function and duties required of the board by this Act and the regulations; and

(c) be entitled to payment for remuneration, travel expenses and other outlays incurred by them in the performance of their duties that are fixed by the Lieutenant-Governor in Council.

(3) Where a member of the board stops being a member, or refuses or is unable because of illness or disqualification or other cause to act as a member, the Lieutenant-Governor in Council shall remove the member who refuses or is unable to act, and shall immediately fill the vacancy created by the cessation or removal.

(4) Notwithstanding subsection (3), the minister may, where he or she is of the opinion that a member of the board is unable because of temporary indisposition to act as a member for a period not exceeding 6 months, with the approval of the Lieutenant-Governor in Council, appoint a member to act in his or her place for a period, not exceeding 6 months that may be specified in the appointment.

(5) For the purposes of enabling the board to determine questions within its jurisdiction, the board and each member is vested with all the powers that are conferred on commissioners under the Public Inquiries Act and, if the regulations confer upon the board the power of an investigating body within the meaning of the Public Investigations Evidence Act, it is vested with all the rights of a body under that Act.

1975-76 No44 s32

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Jurisdiction of board

38. It is the function of the board and the board has exclusive jurisdiction to hear and determine a question, dispute or matter arising out of the application of this Act and those provisions of the regulations pertaining specifically to this Act, including hearing and determining on

(a) the rights of persons to the issuing of licences, certificates and leases, including extensions of licences and leases;

(b) disputes or questions arising between a person and the minister or recorder, or between competing claimants, respecting the boundaries of areas physically staked or the manner and time of staking;

(c) questions of priority for the right to obtain licences;

(d) all matters respecting the cancellation of licences and leases, including allegations of default of the conditions of licences and leases, and whether a misrepresentation by applicants for licences or leases is material;

(e) the right of persons to certificates;

(f) a question pertaining to security deposits required to be made by applicants for licences, including rights to refund and forfeitures to the Crown and amounts of refund and forfeiture; and

(g) other matters pertaining to the rights, privileges, obligations or duties of persons claiming or holding licences or leases conferred or imposed under this Act whether or not specifically referred to in paragraphs (a) to (f) of this section.

1975-76 No44 s33

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Adjudication

39. (1) A person affected and aggrieved by a matter falling within the jurisdiction of the board, in this section referred to as the "grievor", may apply to the board to have the matter adjudicated.

(2) A grievor may,

(a) within 30 days of the date of the decision of the recorder, where the matter complained of relates to a decision of the recorder;

(b) within 6 months from the date of issuing of the licence, where the matter complained of relates to the issuing of that licence; or

(c) within 30 days of the occurrence of the event, not being one referred to in paragraph (a) or (b),

file a notice of grievance, setting out the grounds of the grievance and the facts upon which it is based with the chairperson of the board, and shall serve on the minister and a person affected by the grievance a copy of the notice of the grievance.

(3) The minister shall produce before the board on the hearing of the grievance, and to the Trial Division upon a reference made under subsection (6), or on appeal under section 40, all papers and documents which are in the possession of the Crown and which may affect the outcome of the grievance, reference or appeal.

(4) The board, comprising all of its members, shall hear the grievance on a day appointed by it for the purpose, and shall decide the matter of the grievance, record its decision in writing, disclosing in that record whether the decision is unanimous or by majority, and transmit copies of the decision to the grievor, other persons affected by the appeal and the minister.

(5) Upon receipt of a notice of grievance under subsection (2), the board shall hear the grievance, decide the matter of the grievance and record its decision not later than 90 days from the date of the receipt of the notice of grievance unless the minister extends that period of time.

(6) The board may, before deciding the matter of the grievance, refer a question of law raised at the hearing of the grievance for the opinion of a judge of the Trial Division, and the Rules of Court made under the Judicature Act relating to a special case apply to a reference made under this subsection as if that reference were made by the parties to the grievance.

(7) The board may award costs in an adjudication under this section for or against a party to the grievance, or the Crown, and fix the amount of the costs.

1975-76 No44 s34; 1980 c35 s12; 1986 c42 Sch B; 1990 c17 s14

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Appeal to Trial Division

40. (1) An appeal lies from a decision of the board under section 39 to a judge of the Trial Division upon a point of law raised during the hearing of the appeal before the board, and the practice and procedure under the Judicature Act and the Rules of Court relating to appeals apply to proceedings under this section.

(2) The judge may award costs in an appeal under subsection (1) for or against the appellant or another party to the appeal, or the Crown, and may fix the amount of the costs.

1975-76 No44 s35; 1986 c42 Sch B

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Regulations

41. The Lieutenant-Governor in Council may make regulations

(a) governing the manner of registration required under section 6, fixing the fees for registration, with power to prescribe different fees for different documents or classes of documents;

(b) prescribing additional powers, functions and duties of the recorder, setting the documents required to be kept and maintained by the recorder, and which documents are to be open to view by the public;

(c) for the purposes of paragraph 4(1)(c), exempting from the operation of this Act the minerals in, on or under those lands and lands under water that are defined;

(d) providing for the maintenance of registers additional to those specifically provided for in section 17, and the contents of registers;

(e) respecting applications for licences, with power to prescribe

(i) the fees payable by applicants for licences,

(ii) the documents required to be accompanied by applications for licences,

(iii) the form and amount of security deposits for map staked licences and reserved area licences and making provision for refund of security deposits, and

(iv) upon matters respecting the purchase and price of tags designed for identification of physical staking, the manner of physical staking and the materials to be used in that staking;

(f) prescribing the circumstances and occasions when security deposits made under paragraph 21(1)(c) are to be forfeited to the Crown either in whole or in part and making provision for refund of security deposits;

(g) providing for the preparation and maintenance by the department of plans identifying land in systematic or other block form areas of prescribed sizes in respect of which licences may be issued;

(h) respecting the terms and conditions of licences, with power to prescribe

(i) terms and conditions for the purposes of paragraph 22(3)(b),

(ii) assessment work required to be carried out by licensees for the purposes of the Schedule and fixing monetary values and amounts to be spent upon different types and forms of assessment work prescribed by regulation, and

(iii) forms and values of additional assessment work required to be carried out under licences extended under section 28;

(i) providing for the rectification of minor or typographical errors in licences or leases in the circumstances set out in the regulations;

(j) for the purposes of section 27, prescribing the periods of publication or display of notices relating to cancellation or surrender;

(k) prescribing form and contents of certificates issued under section 29;

(l) respecting extension of licences, and fixing the annual rentals to be paid by licensees during each year of extension in accordance with a formula prescribed by regulation relating to the area;

(m) setting the formula for calculation of annual rental to be paid by lessees and fixing that rental in relation to the formulae;

(n) for the purposes of subparagraph 31(5)(c)(v), providing additional provisions and conditions applicable to all leases;

(o) prescribing additional powers, functions and duties of the board with power to confer upon the board the power of an investigating body under the Public Investigations Evidence Act;

(p) respecting ground surveys and markings to be effected for the purpose of issuing of leases to the holders of ground staked licences;

(q) generally, to give effect to the purpose of this Act; and

(r) prescribing for a matter or thing not otherwise specifically provided for in this subsection which is required to be prescribed or for which regulations may be made under this Act.

1975-76 No44 s36

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Offence

42. (1) A person who

(a) wilfully removes, obliterates or interferes with a stake, tag or other means of identifying the surface of land physically staked for the issuing of a ground staked licence;

(b) with intent to mislead makes a false statement in an application for a licence, lease or certificate, or in a return or report required to be made under this Act or as a condition of a licence or lease; or

(c) commits an offence under this Act or the regulations

is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding $2,000, and in default of payment of a fine, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months, or to both a fine and imprisonment.

(2) Where the person who commits an offence under subsection (1) is a corporation, an officer, director or agent of the corporation who directed, authorized, assented to, acquiesced in or participated in the commission of the offence is a party to and guilty of the offence.

(3) Information in respect of the offences referred to in subsection (1) shall be laid within 3 years from the date of the offence.

(4) Sections 736 and 737 of the Criminal Code do not apply in the disposal of a complaint made or in imposing punishment for any of the offences referred to in subsection (1).

1975-76 No44 s37; 1979 c35 Sch B

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Out of production mines

43. (1) Notwithstanding subsection 4(1), where minerals in, on or under land or land under water are

(a) held under a lease, licence, permit or agreement

(i) under The Crown Lands (Mines and Quarries) Act,

(ii) under a general Act, or

(iii) under a special Act ratifying, confirming, or granting the lease, licence, permit or agreement; or

(b) held as an incident of a fee simple,

and production in relation to those minerals has taken place, or takes place before, at, or after June 6, 1980 and has ceased or ceases in saleable quantities for a total period of 5 years as determined under subsection (2), the rights of the owner to those minerals and the unalienated surface rights cease and revert to the Crown in right of the province upon an order of the Lieutenant-Governor in Council and they may be disposed of in accordance with this Act.

(2) For the purposes of subsection (1), the 5 year period is, in the case of,

(a) a mine that has ceased production before or at June 7, 1980, a total period of 5 years within a period of 25 years commencing from the date that the mine ceased production of minerals in saleable quantities; and

(b) a mine that is in production or comes into production after June 5, 1980, a total period of 5 years within a period of 25 years from the date of the commencement of production of minerals in saleable quantities from the mine, and afterwards a total period of 5 years in each 25 year period following.

(3) Nothing contained in a grant, deed, lease, concession, licence, permit, contract, agreement or other document authorized, ratified, confirmed or approved by a special or general Act, or in a special or general Act enacted before June 6, 1980 affects the operation of this section and in the case of a conflict this section prevails.

(4) Where the rights of an owner to minerals and the unalienated surface rights appertaining to those rights revert to the Crown under this section, no compensation is payable to the owner.

(5) In subsection (1) "unalienated surface rights appertaining to those rights" includes all surface rights to land in, on or under which the rights to minerals have reverted to the Crown under subsection (1) and rights to quarry materials as defined in the Quarry Materials Act.

1980 c35 s13; 1983 c22 s7

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No compensation

44. (1) Where the current term of a licence, permit, lease or agreement referred to in paragraph 4(1)(b) expires and the government of the province does not extend or renew the licence, permit, lease or agreement for a further term that the licence, permit, lease or agreement may permit or the holder of a licence, permit, lease or agreement referred to in paragraph 4(1)(b) obtains a licence, mining lease or demise of surface rights under this Act, an action or proceeding, including an action or proceeding for compensation for damages, does not lie against the Crown for or in respect of

(a) the failure of the government of the province to extend or renew a licence, permit, lease or agreement referred to in paragraph 4(1)(b) where the terms of the licence, permit, lease or agreement provides for 1 or more periods of extension or renewal upon expiry of the current term;

(b) the breach of a term of a licence, permit, lease or agreement or other covenant or undertaking of the Crown to or in favour of a person including the provisions of a licence, permit, lease or agreement granted or entered into by the Crown or the government of the province before the date of coming into force of this section; or

(c) damage or loss to the property or business of a person caused by or resulting, in whole or in part, by reason of the failure of the Crown to renew, a licence, permit, lease or agreement referred to in paragraph 4(1)(b).

(2) This section comes into force on a day to be proclaimed by the Lieutenant-Governor in Council.

1990 c17 s15

 

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SCHEDULE

Conditions of Licence

Condition 1. The licensee shall spend in each 12 month period during the currency of the licence an amount of money, as is set out in the regulations, on assessment work performed on, in or under the land subject to the licence.

Condition 2. (1) Where the licensee is unable to complete the assessment work required to be done in a 12 month period, the licensee may apply to the minister for an extension of time within which the assessment work may be completed, and the minister may grant an extension of time but that extension shall

(a) not relieve a licensee of obligations under this Act, the regulations or the licence for the next 12 month period;

(b) not exceed 12 months from the end of the period during which the work would, apart from the extension, require to be completed;

(c) not extend beyond the expiry date of the licence; and

(d) only be granted where, before the end of the year for which the extension is requested, the licensee delivers to the recorder a security deposit in cash or other form that may be prescribed by regulation in an amount equal to the deficiency in the assessment work for the period.

(2) The security deposit referred to in subparagraph (1)(d) is given to insure that the assessment work is completed and where the work is not completed within the required time, the deposit is forfeit to the Crown.

Condition 3. (1) A licensee shall submit to the recorder within 60 days after the end of each 12 month period of the currency of the licence

(a) an annual report of the assessment work performed during the preceding 12 month period on, in or under the land subject to the licence and the results; and

(b) an account of the expenditure incurred in the performance of that assessment work, which account shall be audited if required by the minister.

(2) Where a licensee is unable, for reasons satisfactory to the recorder, to submit a full annual report within the time required by paragraph (1), the recorder may accept a partial report.

(3) Where the recorder accepts a partial report under paragraph (2), the licensee shall submit the completed annual report within 120 days after the end of the most recent 12 month period of the currency of the licence.

(4) Where the recorder is satisfied that a licensee has performed sufficient assessment work in previous 12 month terms to cover that required for the current 12 month term, the recorder may waive the requirement of an assessment report for the current term.

Condition 4. (1) A geological, geophysical, geochemical or other scientific survey, whether ground or aerial, made by the licensee before grant of licence in, on, over or under the land subject to the licence, or of an area within which the land or part of the land subject to a licence is situated shall be considered to be assessment work performed during the 1st 12 month period of the licence if

(a) the survey was made not more than 1 year before the date of issuing of the licence; and

(b) details and results of the survey and the costs incurred are sent to the recorder with the report of assessment work and expenditures required to be submitted under Condition 3 at the end of the 1st 12 month period of the licence.

(2) The costs of the surveys referred to in paragraph (1) shall be credited to the licensee as assessment work required to be done on the land by the licensee during the 1st 12 months of the licence.

Condition 5. The cost of assessment work done by a licensee on, in or under the land subject to a licence from the date the land was staked, or from the date the application for a licence was made, to the date the licence was issued may be credited as assessment work in that amount during the 1st 12 months of the licence if the particulars of the work done are included with the report of assessment work required for that 12 month period.

Condition 6. The costs of assessment work in excess of the minimum required for any 12 month period of the licence may be applied to the costs of assessment work required for the following 12 month periods during which the licence exists with

(a) full application for the excess, if the report of the excess work and an account of expenditure of the work are filed with the recorder at the same time that the reports and accounts are submitted under Condition 3 for the 12 month period during which the excess work is carried out; or

(b) 50% application for the excess if the report of the excess work and an account of expenditure of that work are filed later than the time set out in paragraph (a).

1975-76 No44 Sch; 1983 c22 s8; 1990 c17 ss16 & 17

©Earl G. Tucker, Queen's Printer