Library of Parliament Research Publications
HillNotes are brief analyses of current or emerging issues that also provide related resources for further reading, as well as recent news clippings on the topics. HillNotes over 90 days old may be found in the Archives section.
22 May 2013
Many of the world’s fish stocks are depleted or over-exploited (466 kB, 6 pages), and ocean biodiversity (8.4 MB, 316 pages) is threatened. In response, several organizations have created “eco-certification” schemes that seek to create a market for fish products that they have determined to be sustainable.
8 May 2013
National Mining Week begins this year on May 13, and its theme is "Our Mineral Resource Advantage: Working for Canadians."
1 May 2013
In May 2013, Canada will succeed Sweden as chair of the Arctic Council, a high-level intergovernmental forum for Arctic governments and peoples. Canada’s term as chair coincides with a period of dynamic change for the Council and the Arctic region as a whole.
The chair rotates among member states every two years. Canada held the inaugural position from 1996 to 1998. It will officially take the helm again at the Council’s ministerial meeting in Kiruna, Sweden, on 14–15 May.
24 April 2013
On 26 April, Canada will appear before a working group of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) to report on how it is meeting its human rights obligations and to hear how it might do better.
This event, known as the Universal Periodic Review (UPR), is an important opportunity to assess Canada’s human rights record.
17 April 2013
In practice, the experiences of victims of crime depend not only on the laws and institutions in place, but also on the individuals victims encounter throughout their interaction with the justice system.
From the police officer receiving the complaint to the judge at trial, everyone in the justice system has a part to play. This is reflected in the theme of this year’s National Victims of Crime Awareness Week from April 21–27, which is We All Have a Role.
27 March 2013
At the G20 February 2013 meeting in Moscow, the loss of corporate tax revenue, or “base erosion,” was highlighted as a growing concern for tax authorities, such as the Canada Revenue Agency.
The loss of this revenue compromises the ability of legislators to fund program spending and tax measures. It occurs largely because multinational corporations take advantage of loopholes in the international taxation system to pay less corporate tax.
21 March 2013
In Canada’s parliamentary system, the federal government must obtain Parliament’s approval to change taxes and to spend funds. The government presents its intentions to Parliament in the estimates and the federal budget, which the Finance Minister delivers today. As both include references to planned spending, parliamentarians may wonder: What is the role of these documents? Why might their numbers differ?
20 March 2013
Although the federal government has jurisdiction over interprovincial pipelines, provinces may have some influence over pipelines that cross their boundaries.
While interprovincial pipelines are unquestionably federal undertakings, numerous related matters – provincial Crown land, property and civil rights, and direct taxation in a province – fall within provincial jurisdiction.
6 March 2013
Agnes Macphail, the first woman elected to the House of Commons in 1921, and Nellie Cournoyea, the first Aboriginal woman to become a provincial or territorial premier in 1991, have accomplishments separated by decades, but they share the status of female trailblazers in Canadian politics.
International Women’s Day is a time to celebrate such achievements, to reflect on women’s progress and to highlight challenges women still face. The day is marked every year on 8 March and was first established by the United Nations during International Women’s Year in 1975.
27 February 2013
Every day in Canada, federally regulated financial institutions – such as banks and insurance companies – and their employees support causes that have impacts on their communities.
And each year, some of these institutions publish what are known as “public accountability statements” that provide the public with a snapshot of the activities that have received such support. The first of the statements that cover activities in 2012 should be available in the coming weeks.
13 February 2013
In recent years, there has been considerable discussion about the costs of replacing Canada’s fleet of CF-18 fighter jets, possibly with a fleet of F-35 Lightning IIs. This discussion has highlighted the role of estimating costs over a program’s life cycle.
6 February 2013
Almost 30% (310,000) of business owners in Canada are likely to sell or transfer their businesses to a family member or to a third party over the next five years, and 50% (550,000) may leave business for retirement within 10 years.
This growing number of transfers could have serious consequences for Canada’s economic landscape if the conditions favouring their successful completion are not met.
30 January 2013
Despite numerous amendments to the Indian Act over the years, the legislative framework of the Act has remained largely unchanged. Today, the Indian Act continues to govern many aspects of life on First Nations reserves.
Among these aspects are Indian status, band membership, the organization and exercise of band government, elections, taxation, lands and resources, management of Indian moneys, wills and estates, and education.
12 December 2012
This year, the Library of Parliament has published three papers on pipelines to shed light on the need for pipelines, environmental concerns, and how the federal government approves pipeline construction. This HillNote summarizes these papers.
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