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The Surveys Act
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This version is current as of March 27, 2017.
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C.C.S.M. c. S240

The Surveys Act

HER MAJESTY, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of Manitoba, enacts as follows:

PART I

LOST CORNERS AND PROTECTION OF MONUMENTS

Definitions

1           In this Part,

"certified record" means a plan or field notes prepared in a manner satisfactory to the registrar-general, and certified to as accurate by a surveyor, showing the particulars of a survey made by the surveyor; (« dossier attesté »)

"lost corner" means any monument fixed by an original survey the position of which is lost and cannot be ascertained with reasonable certainty; (« borne-signal disparue »)

"monument" means a post, stake, peg, mound, pit, or trench or anything used to mark a boundary corner or line; (« borne-signal »)

"original Dominion post" means any post planted to define a survey of an original allotment of land made by or under the authority of the Government of Canada; (« poteau fédéral original »)

"original survey" means any original or first survey of land made by or under the authority of the Government of Canada, or any survey of land of which a plan has been or is, before or after the coming into force of the Revised Statutes, filed or registered under The Real Property Act or The Registry Act in any land titles office or registry office in Manitoba; (« arpentage original »)

"outline monument" includes all survey monuments planted to define any special survey made under The Special Survey Act on the principle of a block-outline survey; all monuments of a permanent character planted in accordance with subsection 117(7) of The Real Property Act; all monuments placed on offset lines to evidence block corners in subdivision surveys, and all monuments defining any road or main highway; (« borne »)

"surveyor" means a Manitoba land surveyor, authorized to practise under The Land Surveyors Act. (« arpenteur-géomètre »)

S.M. 2008, c. 42, s. 87.

Location of original Dominion post established by a monument

2           Where a surveyor engaged in the performance of his duties destroys the evidence existing on the ground of an original Dominion post, he shall perpetuate the point where he has found evidence of the post by planting a monument of such a character, and in such a manner, as may be from time to time directed by the registrar-general; and he shall forthwith deposit in the Winnipeg Land Titles Office a certified record in duplicate of his perpetuation of the aforesaid point.

Outline monuments public property

3           All outline monuments, whether defining directly any line or limit or indirectly defining a line or limit as a reference point, are equally public property, and as such shall be kept available to surveyors at any time, and shall not be unnecessarily interfered with by any person or municipality.

Persons and municipalities to protect outline monuments

4           All persons and municipalities when making improvements, public or otherwise, shall protect all outline monuments from being disturbed in the course of the improvements, and shall provide traps in pavements or sidewalks covering the monuments when necessary to make them easily accessible.

After improvements monuments to be restored to original location

5           Where any improvement is to be made of such a character as to alter permanently the surface grade or to otherwise disturb or render practically inaccessible any outline monuments, the municipality or other person responsible for the improvement shall have a survey made under the direction of the registrar-general referencing the monuments; and during the course of completion of the improvements the monuments shall be restored to their original location or suitable monuments substituted therefor, to the satisfaction of the registrar-general.

Remedying of disturbance of monuments

6           The registrar-general, upon receiving a report from any surveyor indicating the disturbance in any way of any outline monument, may require the municipality in which the monument is situated to remedy any such disturbance of monuments or surveys to his satisfaction; and if, upon being required to do so, the municipality refuses or neglects to comply with the requirement, the registrar-general shall remedy the disturbance to his satisfaction and the cost thereof shall be paid in the first place out of the Consolidated Fund, and subsequently collected from the municipality through the minister; but if the cost will exceed the sum of $1,000., the registrar-general shall not take the proceedings without the approval of the Lieutenant Governor in Council.

S.M. 1993, c. 48, s. 102; S.M. 2000, c. 35, s. 81; S.M. 2004, c. 42, s. 83.

Records deposited in Winnipeg L. T. O.

7           A certified record in duplicate shall be deposited forthwith in the Winnipeg Land Titles Office of all surveys and restorations made under sections 5 and 6.

Certified record retained in Winnipeg L. T. O.

8           The certified record shall be retained in the Winnipeg Land Titles Office and a duplicate shall be deposited in the land titles office of the district in which the land affected is situated.

Records as evidence

9           All certified records deposited under sections 2 and 7 shall be accepted and are admissible in evidence as prima facie proof of the facts recorded therein.

Re-establishment of lost corner

10(1)       Where, in the performance of his duties, it is necessary or advisable for a surveyor to re-establish a lost corner, he shall determine the most probable location of the lost corner, having due regard to the manner in which it was originally located, the distances, angles, and bearings, recorded on any plan or field notes available of the original survey, (making allowances for any difference in standard of measure, and for any evident error in the plan or field notes) and any other available evidence as to the position of the lost corner.

Perpetuation of point determined

10(2)       Where, under subsection (1), a surveyor determines the most probable location of a lost corner, he shall

(a) perpetuate the location so determined by planting a monument of such character and in such manner as may from time to time be prescribed by the registrar-general; and

(b) forthwith deposit in the Winnipeg Land Titles Office a certified record of his perpetuation of the location with supporting material.

Effect of new monument

10(3)       Except as provided in section 11, a monument planted by a surveyor under subsection (2) is the true corner monument and shall be considered and treated in all respects as if it had been fixed and established by the original survey.

Notice where rights affected

11(1)       Where on planting a monument under subsection 10(2), a surveyor finds there is a substantial difference between the most probable location of a lost corner which he has determined under subsection 10(1) and the existing occupation lines or where before the position of the monument is recorded in the Winnipeg Land Titles Office, he or the registrar-general determines that some person may be prejudicially affected by the re-establishment of the lost corner, he shall

(a) cause a copy of a notice of the planting of the monument to be posted in close proximity to the monument and in several conspicuous places on or near the lands affected by the position of the monument;

(b) cause a copy of the notice to be mailed by registered mail to any registered owner of land whom the surveyor or the registrar-general has determined may be prejudicially affected, to the address of the registered owner on record in the Land Titles Office for the Land Titles District in which the land is situated;

(c) where any of the lands affected by the position of the monument are within a municipality or a Local Government District, deliver or send by mail copies of the notice to the secretary of the municipality or the resident administrator of the Local Government District; and

(d) deliver or send by mail a copy of the notice to the secretary of the Association of Manitoba Land Surveyors.

Publication of notice

11(2)       The registrar-general shall cause a copy of the notice required under subsection (1) to be published in one edition of a newspaper having a general circulation in the area of the province in which the lands affected by the position of the monument are situated.

Form of notice

11(3)       The notice required under subsection (1) shall

(a) be in a form approved by the registrar-general;

(b) include particulars of the location of the monument and of the name, address and telephone number of the surveyor and the Examiner of Surveys; and

(c) require any person having any objection to or having any evidence which he desires to give against the confirmation of the re-establishment of a lost corner to submit any such objection or evidence in writing, verified by affidavit, to the registrar-general within 30 days from the publication of the notice.

Confirmation where no objection received

11(4)       Where no objection to or evidence against the confirmation of the re-establishment of a lost corner is received by the registrar-general within 30 days after the publication of the notice, or where any such objection is subsequently withdrawn in writing, the registrar-general shall confirm the re-establishment of the lost corner.

Planting monument in new position

11(5)       Where the registrar-general receives evidence which the surveyor and the registrar-general accept as valid, the surveyor shall plant the monument in a new position based upon that evidence and the same procedures shall apply as in the determination of the most probable location of a lost corner.

Notice to commence action

12(1)       Where the registrar-general receives an objection to or evidence against the confirmation of the re-establishment of the lost corner, if the surveyor and the registrar-general do not accept the evidence as valid, the registrar-general shall serve the person objecting or submitting the evidence, by registered mail, with a notice specifying a period of not less than 30 days from the date of mailing of the notice within which the person may take proceedings in the Court of Queen's Bench to establish the validity of his objection and file evidence that the proceedings have been commenced with the registrar-general.

Confirmation where no action commenced

12(2)       Where the registrar-general does not receive evidence that proceedings have been commenced in the Court of Queen's Bench to establish the validity of a person's objection within the time limited in the notice served on the person under subsection (1), the registrar-general shall confirm the re-establishment of the lost corner.

Effect of confirmation

12(3)       Where the location of a lost corner is re-established in accordance with an order of the Court of Queen's Bench or the re-establishment of a lost corner is confirmed by the registrar-general, the monument planted to perpetuate the location of the lost corner is the true corner monument and shall be considered and treated in all respects as if it had been fixed and established by the original survey.

PART II

SURVEYS OF CROWN LANDS

Definitions

13          In this Part,

"Crown lands" means Crown lands as defined in The Crown Lands Act; (« terres domaniales »)

"Director of Surveys" means the Director of Surveys appointed under this Part; (« directeur des Levés »)

"minister" means the member of the Executive Council charged with the administration of this Act by the Lieutenant Governor in Council; (« ministre »)

"monument" means a post, stake, peg, mound, pit, or trench, or anything used to mark or reference a boundary or boundary corner; (« borne-signal »)

"surveyor" means a Manitoba land surveyor. (« arpenteur-géomètre »)

Application

14          This Part applies to Crown lands.

APPOINTMENT OF STAFF

Appointment of director and staff

15(1)       A Director of Surveys and such other officers and employees as may be considered necessary, may be appointed as provided in The Civil Service Act.

Director of Surveys qualifications

15(1.1)        In order to be eligible for appointment as Director of Surveys, a person must have at least five years' experience as a land surveyor in Manitoba or in another province or territory in Canada and be currently entitled to practise as a land surveyor in that jurisdiction.

Duties of director

15(2)       The Director of Surveys shall administer and enforce, under the direction and control of the minister, this Part and the regulations made hereunder.

15(3) to (5) Repealed.

S.M. 1992, c. 14, s. 3.; S.M. 2015, c. 43, s. 45

ADMINISTRATION

Administration of surveys of Crown lands

16          The minister has the administration, direction, and control, of the surveys of Crown lands.

SURVEYORS

Qualification of surveyor

17          No person shall act as a surveyor of Crown lands unless he is qualified as a surveyor under The Land Surveyors Act.

STANDARD OF MEASURES

Measures

18          The measures of length used in the surveys of Crown lands shall be the Dominion measures of length defined by The Weights and Measures Act (Canada).

EVIDENCE BEFORE SURVEYORS

Evidence

19          Every surveyor acting in that capacity may examine witnesses on oath with respect to all matters relating to the survey of lands and for better ascertaining the original corners or limits of any township, section, quarter-section, legal subdivision, lot, parcel, or tract of land, and may administer such an oath to every person whom he examines in relation to those matters.

Surveyor may compel attendance

20          Where a surveyor is in doubt as to the true corner, boundary, or limit, of any township, section, quarter-section, legal subdivision, lot, parcel, or tract of land, which he is employed to survey, and has reason to believe that any person is possessed of any important information touching that corner, boundary, or limit, or of any writing, plan, or document, tending to establish the true position of the corner, boundary, or limit, if the person does not willingly appear before, and be examined by, the surveyor, or does not willingly produce to him the writing, plan, or document, the surveyor may apply to any justice of the peace for a subpoena ad testificandum, or a subpoena duces tecum, as the case requires, accompanying the application by an affidavit made before the justice of the peace, as to the facts on which the application is founded; and the justice may issue a subpoena accordingly.

Service of subpoena

21          A subpoena issued under section 20 set forth shall be served on the person named therein by delivering a copy thereof to him, or by leaving the copy for him with an adult person at his residence and exhibiting to him or that adult person the original; and if the person required in the subpoena to appear (his reasonable expenses having been paid or tendered to himself or the adult person) refuses or neglects to appear before the surveyor at the place and time appointed in the subpoena, or to produce the writing, plan, or document, if any, therein mentioned or referred to, or to give such evidence or information as he possesses touching the boundary or limit in question, a warrant by a justice of the peace for the arrest of the person may be issued, and he is liable, on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding $200. or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months or to both.

Certifying correctness of evidence

22          All evidence taken by a surveyor, as aforesaid, shall be reduced to writing and shall be read over to the person giving the evidence, and shall be signed by the person, or if he cannot write, shall be acknowledged by him as correct before two witnesses who shall sign it, as shall also the surveyor; and the evidence shall be filed and kept, and any document or plan prepared and sworn to as correct before a justice of the peace, or a commissioner for oaths, by any surveyor, with reference to any survey by him performed, may be filed and kept at the land titles office of the land titles district in which the lands to which they relate are situated, subject to be produced thereafter in evidence in court.

SURVEYS

Townships

23          Crown lands shall be laid off in quadrilateral townships, each containing 36 sections of as nearly one mile square as the convergence of meridians permits with such provisions for road allowances, and of such width, as the Lieutenant Governor in Council prescribes. The sections shall be numbered as shown by the following diagram:

N.
W.
31 32 33 34 35 36
30 29 28 27 26 25
19 20 21 22 23 24
18 17 16 15 14 13
7 8 9 10 11 12
6 5 4 3 2 1
E.
S.

Meridians, chords

24          The lines bounding townships on the east and west shall be meridians; and those on the north and south sides shall be chords to parallels of latitude.

Townships to be numbered

25          The townships shall be numbered, in regular order, northerly from the international boundary, or forty-ninth parallel of latitude, and shall lie in ranges numbered east and west from the principal meridian, and elsewhere from such other initial meridians as the minister directs.

Width of townships

26          Townships shall be given their prescribed width on the base lines hereinafter mentioned; and the meridians between townships shall be drawn across the bases northward and southward to the depth of two townships therefrom, that is to say, to the correction lines hereinafter mentioned.

Base lines

27          The forty-ninth parallel, or international boundary, shall be the first base line, or that for townships numbered one; the second base line shall be between townships four and five; the third between townships eight and nine; the fourth between townships twelve and thirteen; the fifth between townships sixteen and seventeen; and so on northerly in regular succession.

Correction lines

28          The correction lines, or those upon which the jog resulting from the convergence of meridians shall be allowed, shall be those lines running east and west between townships and midway between the bases, which lines are, the line between townships two and three; that between townships six and seven; that between townships ten and eleven, and so on.

Quarter-sections

29          Each section shall be divided into quarter-sections of 160 acres, more or less, subject to the provisions hereinafter contained.

North and south discrepancies

30          The north and south discrepancy in closing on the correction lines from the north and south shall be allowed in the ranges of quarter-sections adjoining, and north and south respectively of the correction lines.

East and west discrepancies

31          In the survey of a township the east and west deficiency or surplus shall be equally distributed among all the quarter-sections involved; but the minister may order such deficiency or surplus to be allowed in the range of quarter-sections adjoining the west boundary of the township.

Returns of dimensions and area

32(1)       Subject to subsection (2), the dimensions and area of irregular quarter-sections or other parcels of land shall in all cases be returned by the surveyor at their actual measurements and contents.

Internal road allowances not included in area

32(2)       In cases in which road allowances are laid out not between but through sections, quarter-sections, or other parcels of land, the area reserved for the road allowances shall not be included in the area returned for a quarter-section or other parcel of land.

Single row of monuments

33(1)       Except as hereinafter provided, only a single row of monuments to indicate the corners of townships, sections, or quarter-sections, shall be placed on any survey line thereof.

Place of monuments

33(2)       The monuments shall, on north and south lines, be placed in the east boundaries of the sections, and on the east and west lines, in the north boundaries of sections; and in all cases shall fix and govern the position of the boundary corner between the adjoining townships, sections, or quarter-sections.

Monuments on correction lines

34          In the case of township, section, and quarter section corners on correction lines, monuments shall, in all cases, be placed and marked independently for the townships on each side; and when a road allowance is laid out along such a line, the monuments shall be placed in the limit of the road lying alongside the lands which they are intended to define.

Legal subdivisions

35          To facilitate the description for title to less than a quarter-section, every section shall be taken to be divided into quarter quarter-sections, each of 40 acres more or less, which shall be styled legal subdivisions, and shall be numbered as shown in the following diagram:

N.
W.
13 14 15 16
12 11 10 9
5 6 7 8
4 3 2 1
E.
S.

Powers of minister

36          Notwithstanding anything in this Act, the minister may direct

(a) that lands bordering on any river, watercourse, or lake or on a public road, be surveyed, laid out, and divided into lots of any certain frontage or depth, in such manner and with such roads as appears desirable;

(b) that lands be surveyed, laid out, and divided into town or village lots, with such streets, lanes, places, squares, and commons, as are considered necessary;

(c) that roads, not less than 66 feet in width, be surveyed and laid out where such roads appear to be required;

(d) that lands in the remote parts of the province be surveyed, laid out, and divided into lots of such size and shape as may be found advisable;

(e) that lands in regions where the ordinary mode of survey is impracticable, be laid out into townships, sections, quarter-sections, and legal or other subdivisions, by fixing the corners of such townships, sections, quarter-sections, and legal or other subdivisions, by reference to points determined by astronomical observations, or by triangulation or other geodetic process;

(f) that townships, sections, quarter-sections, legal or other subdivisions, settlement or river lots, town or village lots, or other lots or parcels of land, surveyed or laid out under the authority of this section, be described for title by numbers according to plans of record, or by metes and bounds, or by both, as seems expedient.

Plans of survey

37          Notwithstanding anything in this Part, the minister may order and direct that any survey made under the authority of, and in compliance with, the Dominion Lands Surveys Act (Canada), at any time prior to July 15, 1930, upon receipt by him of a copy of the field notes or plan of the survey duly certified by the Surveyor General of Canada or by the surveyor who made the survey, and upon approval of the field notes or plan by the Director of Surveys, shall become the official survey, and the field notes or plan shall thereupon become the official field notes or plan of the survey.

PLANS OF CROWN LANDS

Contents of plan

38(1)       Plans of Crown lands, surveyed or re-surveyed, under this Part, shall be certified by the surveyor making those surveys; and those plans shall show the direction and length of the boundaries, the nature and position of the boundary monuments, and the areas of the quarter-sections or other parcels of land laid out.

Confirmation

38(2)       The confirmation of any such plan by the Director of Surveys shall be held to be a confirmation of the survey; and the confirmed plan is the official plan.

Official plans

38(3)       Plans of townships compiled from official plans of record are, when confirmed by the Director of Surveys, the official plans of such townships.

Correction of errors

38(4)       Where any plan of record is found to be incorrect or where any omission, clerical error, or other defect, is found in the plan, the Director of Surveys may have it corrected in such manner as to him seems best, and he shall thereupon enter upon the plan an order stating in what respect it stands amended; and thereafter the plan shall for all purposes be deemed to have been so amended or corrected from the time the plan was placed on record, and the description of land in any instrument shall thereafter be construed as if it referred to the plan as corrected.

ORIGINAL BOUNDARY LINES

Boundary lines

39          All boundary lines of townships, sections, or other subdivisions or parcels of land surveyed, as defined by monuments placed to mark or reference the boundaries of any townships, sections, or other subdivisions under the authority of this Part or of the Lieutenant Governor in Council, are, after confirmation of the survey by the Director of Surveys and subject to the provisions herein, the true boundaries of the townships, sections, or other subdivisions, whether they, upon admeasurement, are or are not found to contain the exact area or dimensions mentioned or expressed in any official plan or in any title or other instrument of or affecting any such township, section, or other subdivisions.

Area of township, section, etc.

40          Every township, section, or other subdivision, consists of the whole width included between the several corners thereof as defined by the several monuments placed as aforesaid, and no more or less, notwithstanding any quantity or measure expressed in the official plan, title, or other instrument.

Title to aliquot part

41          Any title or instrument purporting to convey any right or interest in any aliquot part of any section, or other subdivision, shall be construed to affect the aliquot part of the quantity it contains on the ground, whether that quantity is more or less than that expressed in the title or instrument.

EVIDENCE

Documents, etc., to be evidence

42          Copies of any records, documents, plans, books or papers, belonging to or deposited in the office of the Director of Surveys, attested under the signature of the minister or of the Director of Surveys, or of any chief clerk or officer authorized thereto, are competent evidence in all cases in which the original records, documents, books, plans, or papers, would be in evidence.

Lithographed copies to be prima facie proof

43          Lithographed or other copies of maps or plans, purporting to have a lithographed or copied signature of the minister or of the Director of Surveys thereto attached, shall be received in evidence in all courts and proceedings as prima facie proof of the original and of the contents thereof.

Verification by oath

44          The minister may require any statement in relation to any land to which any Act relating to Crown lands applies to be verified by oath or affidavit.

REGULATIONS

Ministerial regulation respecting fees

44.1        The minister may, by regulation, establish a tariff of fees that may be charged for maps, plans and other documents, materials and services provided under this Act or the regulations.

S.M. 1992, c. 14, s. 4.

L.G. in C. regulations

44.2        The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations respecting any matter that is necessary or advisable to implement this Part effectively.

S.M. 1992, c. 14, s. 4.

OFFENCES AND PENALTIES

For interfering with survey

45          Every person who, on any part of Crown lands, interrupts, molests, or hinders, any surveyor while in the discharge of his duty as a surveyor, is guilty of an offence and is liable, on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding $50. or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two months or to both, without prejudice to any civil remedy that the surveyor or any other person may have against the person committing the offence.

For pulling down monuments

46(1)       Every person who wilfully pulls down, defaces, alters, or removes, any monument erected, planted, or placed, in any original survey or re-survey, is guilty of an offence and is liable, on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months.

For possession of posts

46(2)       Every person who, not being a surveyor, knowingly and wilfully has in his possession and custody, not for any lawful purpose in connection with a survey or re-survey of the public lands, any monument, or any post or monument intended or apparently intended to be used for the purposes of any survey, or to mark or reference any limit, boundary, or corner, is guilty of an offence and is liable, on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding $100. or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months or to both.

Surveyor may remove monument

47          Nothing in this Part prevents a surveyor, in his operations, from displacing any monument or other boundary mark when necessary, after which he shall carefully replace it as it was before; or prevents him from removing a monument and erecting a new one.

GENERAL

Special Survey Act not affected

48(1)       Nothing in Part I alters or amends The Special Survey Act or restricts the operation of that Act.

Land Surveyors Act not affected

48(2)       Nothing in this Act alters or amends The Land Surveyors Act.