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The Wild Rice Act
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This version is current as of March 27, 2017.
It has been in effect since October 1, 2015.

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C.C.S.M. c. W140

The Wild Rice Act

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

Definitions

1           In this Act,

"buyer's permit" means a permit for the purchase of wild rice; (« permis d'acheteur »)

"Crown land" means land within the province vested in the Crown in right of Manitoba; (« terre domaniale »)

"development" means the seeding of an area that is not producing wild rice for such number of years as may be necessary for the area to begin producing wild rice; (« mise en valeur »)

"development licence" means a licence for the development of Crown land for wild rice production; (« licence de mise en valeur »)

"export certificate" means a valid and subsisting export certificate issued under this Act; (« certificat d'exportation »)

"Indian Band" means a band as defined in the Indian Act (Canada); (« bande indienne »)

"licence" means a valid and subsisting licence issued under this Act; (« licence »)

"load slip" means a valid and subsisting load slip issued under this Act; (« bordereau de chargement »)

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

"officer" includes

(a) a person appointed as an officer under this Act,

(a.1) a conservation officer appointed under The Conservation Officers Act,

(b) a person called upon by an officer to render assistance in the enforcement of this Act or the regulations,

(c) a peace officer or special constable appointed under any other Act of the Legislature or the Parliament of Canada, and

(d) an officer appointed under the Customs Act (Canada); (« agent »)

"permit" means a valid and subsisting permit issued under this Act; (« permis »)

"person" includes a co-operative, a partnership and an Indian Band; (« personne »)

"production licence" means a licence for the harvesting, or the seeding and harvesting, of wild rice; (« licence de production »)

"wild rice" means wild rice in a green or unprocessed state; (« riz sauvage »)

"wild rice zone" means a wild rice zone designated under this Act. (« zone de riz sauvage »)

S.M. 2015, c. 4, s. 32.

Application of Act

2(1)        This Act applies to and in respect of all wild rice growing or grown or proposed to be grown by natural means or methods on Crown land, but does not apply

(a) to or in respect of any wild rice growing or grown or proposed to be grown by domestic means or methods on Crown land; or

(b) to or in respect of any wild rice growing or grown or proposed to be grown by natural or domestic means or methods on private land; or

(c) subject to subsection (2), to or in respect of any lease for the development of an area for wild rice production or the production or harvesting of wild rice issued under The Crown Lands Act before or after the coming into force of this Act.

Rent under Crown Lands Act leases

2(2)        The amount of any fee, rent or royalty payable under a lease to which reference is made in clause (1)(c) shall be as prescribed in the regulations made under this Act, notwithstanding that a different amount is prescribed in the lease or is prescribed in respect of the lease in The Crown Lands Act or the regulations made thereunder.

"Domestic" and "natural" defined

2(3)        In this section, "domestic means or methods" means means or methods consisting of or including or relying upon continuous artificial measures such as cultivation or irrigation, and "natural means or methods" means means or methods not consisting of or including or relying upon any artificial measures.

Aboriginal and treaty rights

2(4)        This Act shall be administered so as not to abrogate or derogate from any aboriginal or treaty rights an Indian Band may have relating to wild rice.

Development licence

3           No person shall engage in the development of Crown land for the production of wild rice, except pursuant to and in accordance with the terms and conditions of a development licence, and except within an area specified in the licence.

Production licence

4(1)        No person shall engage in

(a) the seeding of wild rice; or

(b) subject to subsection (2) and sections 5 and 6, the harvesting of wild rice;

except pursuant to and in accordance with the terms and conditions of a production licence, and except within an area specified in the licence.

Mechanical harvesting

4(2)        The holder of a licence authorizing the harvesting of wild rice is authorized by the licence, within an area specified in the licence, to engage in the manual harvesting of wild rice but not in the mechanical harvesting of wild rice, and the holder of the licence shall not engage in the mechanical harvesting of wild rice unless

(a) in addition to the licence, he holds a permit authorizing him to harvest the wild rice by mechanical means;

(b) he does not engage in the mechanical harvesting of the wild rice except within an area specified in the permit; and

(c) in the mechanical harvesting of the wild rice, he complies with the terms and condition of both the licence and the permit.

Non-licence areas

5(1)        Notwithstanding section 4, in an area of Crown land designated for the purpose by the minister, any person may without a licence engage in the manual or mechanical harvesting of wild rice if he holds a permit therefor and engages in the harvesting within an area specified in the permit and complies with the terms and conditions of the permit, and no person shall in an area so designated engage in the manual or mechanical harvesting of wild rice except pursuant to and in accordance with the terms and conditions of a permit and except within an area specified in the permit.

Designation of areas

5(2)        The minister may designate areas of Crown land for the purposes of subsection (1).

Areas designated for hand-picking

6(1)        Notwithstanding sections 4 and 5, in an area of Crown land designated for the purpose by the regulations, any person may engage in the manual harvesting of wild rice without a licence or permit.

Areas designated for Indian Bands

6(2)        Notwithstanding sections 4 and 5, a registered Indian or an Indian Band may engage in the harvesting of wild rice for household purposes without a licence or permit in areas of Crown land designated for such harvesting in the regulations.

Transportation of wild rice

7           No person shall transport wild rice without a load slip.

Buyer's permit

8(1)        No person shall, for the purpose of resale, purchase wild rice from the producer thereof, except pursuant to and in accordance with the terms and conditions of a buyer's permit.

Penalty for non-observance

8(2)        Any person who contravenes or fails to observe a provision of subsection (1) shall not be eligible to receive a permit for the purposes of that subsection for a period of 18 months from the date of the contravention or failure.

Export certificate

9(1)        The minister may, by regulation, require any person exporting or proposing to export wild rice from the province to obtain an export certificate.

Prohibition of export

9(2)        Where the minister makes a regulation under subsection (1), no person shall export any wild rice from the province except pursuant to and in accordance with the terms and conditions of an export certificate.

Issue of licences

10(1)       The minister may issue any licence, permit, load slip or export certificate required under this Act to any person who applies therefor and who, subject to subsection (2), has been a resident of the province for not less than one year.

Wild rice zones

10(2)       To facilitate the management of wild rice production in the province, the minister may, by regulation, designate wild rice zones,but shall not issue any licence or permit in respect of a wild rice zone so designated, or an area thereof, except to a person who has been a resident of that wild rice zone for not less than one year.

Two or more licences to same person

11(1)       Subject to subsection (2), the minister may issue more than one licence to any person.

Number of production licences restricted

11(2)       No person may hold more than eight production licences at the same time.

Terms and conditions of licences

12          Every licence and every permit is subject to such terms and conditions as may be prescribed therefor in the regulations and such further terms and conditions, not inconsistent with this Act or the regulations, as the minister may impose in respect thereof.

Form of licences

13          Every licence, permit, load slip and export certificate, and every application therefor, shall be in a form prescribed in the regulations.

Fees, rents, royalties

14(1)       The minister may, by regulation, prescribe fees, rents, royalties or other payments that shall be paid by any applicant for or holder of a licence or permit, and may, by regulation, prescribe the manner and time of payment.

Non-payment of rent

14(2)       Where a person fails to pay any fee, rent, royalty or other amount that he is required to pay pursuant to a regulation made under subsection (1), an officer may on the direction of the minister seize any wild rice of which the person is the owner and may sell the wild rice in such manner and for such amount as the minister may direct, and may deduct and retain out of the proceeds of sale the amount owing to the Crown from the person including the costs of seizure and sale and shall return any balance of the proceeds to the person.

Application by alleged debtor

14(3)       Any person from whom wild rice has been seized under subsection (2) may, within 30 days of the seizure or such further time as the court may allow, apply to the Court of Queen's Bench for an order under subsection (4).

Order of restitution

14(4)       Where, upon hearing an application under subsection (3), the court is satisfied that the applicant owes no fee, rent, royalty, or other amount to the government or owes a smaller amount than the government has alleged, the court may

(a) order the return, if possible, of some or all of the wild rice to the applicant; or

(b) order the government to make restitution to the applicant in an appropriate amount, including any monies reasonably expended by the applicant in applying for the order; or

(c) make such other order as is just under the circumstances.

Duration of development licence

15(1)       A development licence is valid for a period of three years, unless sooner suspended or cancelled under this Act.

Duration of production licence

15(2)       A production licence is valid for a period of 10 years, unless sooner suspended or cancelled under this Act.

Duration of permit

16          A permit is valid for such period of time as may be fixed in the regulations, unless sooner suspended or cancelled under this Act, but any period so fixed shall not exceed one year.

Ownership of wild rice harvested

17          The holder of a licence or permit authorizing the production or harvesting of wild rice is the owner, for all purposes, of any wild rice

(a) produced or harvested by him pursuant to the licence or permit; or

(b) harvested by any other person with or without his consent, within the area specified in the licence or permit;

and may take any steps provided by law to recover, or to recover the value of, any of that wild rice taken or harvested without his authority, whether the wild rice is still in its original, natural state or has been processed.

Rights not exclusive

18          The right conferred by a licence or permit to develop a specified area for wild rice production or to produce or harvest wild rice within a specified area is an exclusive right within that area for that purpose only but not for all purposes, and does not prevent any other person who is authorized under this or any other Act of the Legislature to carry out another purpose within that area from carrying out that other purpose or from entering the area in order to do so but only insofar as that other purpose and that entry do not interfere with the purpose that the holder is authorized by the licence or permit to carry out.

Transfer of development licence

19          A development licence is not transferable by the holder thereof to any other person, except with the approval of the minister.

Transfer of production licence

20          A production licence is not transferable by the holder thereof to any other person, except with the approval of the minister.

Transfer of permit

21          A permit authorizing the harvesting of wild rice is not transferable by the holder of the permit to any other person.

False statement

22          No person shall knowingly make any false statement in any application, or any record, report or return, required under this Act.

Cancellation of licences, etc.

23           The minister may suspend and, after notice and a hearing, cancel the licence, permit or export certificate of any person who contravenes or fails to observe a provision of this Act or the regulations.

Appointment of officers

24(1)       The minister may appoint any person as an officer for the purposes of this Act.

Temporary officers

24(2)       An officer, while engaged in the enforcement of this Act or the regulations, may call upon any person for assistance and that person, while giving the assistance, is an officer for the purposes of this Act.

Authority of officer

24(3)       For the purposes of this Act, an officer is, and has and may exercise the powers and authority of, a special constable, constable, police constable or peace officer.

Wild rice camps

25          For the purpose of enforcing this Act, an officer may without a warrant enter and inspect any camp used or occupied for the purpose of the harvesting or marketing of wild rice.

Seizure in execution of duties

26(1)       Where, in conducting an inspection under this Act or otherwise acting in the course or scope of duty, an officer discovers an offence being committed against this Act or the regulations, the officer may seize

(a) any wild rice and any receptacle in which the wild rice is contained; or

(b) any implement or appliance used in the production of wild rice; or

(c) any vehicle, boat, aircraft or other conveyance;

which is being used to commit the offence or which is evidence of the offence, and may bring it before a justice, or report on it to a justice, to be dealt with according to law.

Warrant to enter and seize

26(2)       A justice who is satisfied by information upon oath that there are reasonable and probable grounds to believe that

(a) an offence against this Act or the regulations has occurred or is occurring; and

(b) there is to be found in any building or receptacle, or any vehicle, boat, aircraft or other conveyance, or any other place in the province a book, record, document, quantity of wild rice, implement, appliance or other thing which affords evidence of the offence;

may at any time issue a warrant authorizing any officer and such other persons as may be named in the warrant, to enter and search the building, receptacle, conveyance or place for the thing, and to seize it and bring it before a justice, or report on it to a justice, to be dealt with according to law.

Seizure without warrant

26(3)       Where an officer believes, on reasonable and probable grounds, that

(a) an offence against this Act or the regulations has occurred or is occurring; and

(b) there is to be found in any vehicle, boat, aircraft or other conveyance in the province a book, record, document, quantity of wild rice, implement, appliance or other thing which affords evidence of the offence;

and it is not practicable in the circumstances to obtain a warrant in accordance with subsection (2), the officer may, without warrant, search the conveyance for the thing and may seize and bring it before a justice, or report on it to a justice, to be dealt with according to law.

Entry upon private lands

27          In the course and for the purpose of discharging his duties under this Act, an officer may enter upon and pass through private lands without being liable for trespass.

Arrest

28          An officer who witnesses a person committing an offence under this Act may without any legal process forthwith arrest the person and thereupon without delay bring him before a competent court to be dealt with according to law.

Storage or sale of wild rice

29(1)       Any wild rice seized under section 26 in respect of an alleged offence

(a) may be held or stored in such manner, in such place and for such time as the minister may direct, and may be sold thereafter in such manner and for such amount as the minister may further direct; or

(b) may be sold immediately following the seizure, in such manner and for such amount as the minister may direct;

and the proceeds of any sale shall be held, with interest to be paid thereon at a rate fixed from time to time by the Lieutenant Governor in Council, pending the outcome of proceedings in respect of the alleged offence.

Disposition after proceedings

29(2)       Where the proceedings referred to in subsection (1) have been finally resolved,

(a) if the accused has been convicted of the offence, the wild rice, or the proceeds of sale and accumulated interest referred to in subsection (1), are forfeited to the Crown, but if another person is the owner of the wild rice within the meaning of section 17, the wild rice, or the proceeds of sale and accumulated interest, shall be turned over or paid to that other person;

(b) if the accused has been acquitted or the prosecution has not proceeded, the wild rice, or the proceeds of sale and accumulated interest, shall be turned over or paid to the person who is lawfully entitled to possess it or them.

Disposition of other things

29(3)       Subject to subsections (4) to (6), when proceedings under this Act or the regulations in respect of any thing except wild rice seized under section 26 have been finally resolved, or at such earlier time as the thing is no longer required for purposes of proceedings under this Act or the regulations, the thing shall be turned over to the person who is lawfully entitled to possess it.

Application for earlier possession

29(4)       Any person claiming to be lawfully entitled to possess any thing except wild rice seized under section 26 may, prior to the turning over of the thing under subsection (3) and upon giving the minister 14 days notice of the hearing, apply to a justice for an order under subsection (5).

Order by justice

29(5)       Upon hearing an application under subsection (4), the justice may order the seized thing to be turned over to the applicant, subject to such terms and conditions as the justice prescribes, if

(a) the applicant is lawfully entitled to possess the thing; and

(b) the justice is satisfied that appropriate arrangements have been, or will be, made to assure that the turning over of the thing will not interfere with the proper disposition of proceedings under this Act or the regulations.

Where person unknown

29(6)       Where, for six months or more after a thing has been seized under section 26, the person who is lawfully entitled to possess it is unknown or cannot be located after reasonable effort, the thing becomes the property of the Crown and may be disposed of as the minister or an officer directs.

Offence and penalty

30(1)       Any person who contravenes or fails to observe a provision of this Act or the regulations is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction, where the person is an individual, to a fine of not more than $1,000. or to imprisonment for a term of not more than three months and, where the person is not an individual, to a fine of not more than $2,000.

Continuing offence

30(2)       An offence under this Act or the regulations that continues for more than one day is a separate offence on each day during which it continues.

Delegation by minister

30.1        The minister may delegate to an employee of the government any power conferred or duty imposed on the minister under this Act or the regulations, except the power to make regulations.

S.M. 2008, c. 42, s. 98.

Regulations by minister

31          For the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this Act according to their intent, the minister may make such regulations as are ancillary thereto and not inconsistent therewith; and every regulation made under, and in accordance with the authority granted by, this section has the force of law; and, without restricting the generality of the foregoing, the minister may make regulations,

(a) designating areas of Crown land for the purposes of section 6;

(b) requiring any person exporting wild rice from the province to obtain an export certificate;

(c) designating wild rice zones;

(d) prescribing terms and conditions to which any licence or permit shall be subject;

(e) prescribing the form of any licence, permit, load slip or export certificate and of any application therefor;

(f) prescribing fees, rents, royalties or other payments payable in respect of any licence or permit, or any application therefor, and the manner and time of payment;

(g) fixing the expiry date of any permit.