Province Wants Resolution On Soldier Settlement

Friday, January 15, 2010 at 14:15



The transfer of minerals rights to the Saskatchewan government as compensation for rights the federal government kept on Soldier Settlement lands is not treaty infringement, according to province’s Ministry of Energy and Resources.


Ministry official Roy Schneider says there are alternative ways for the province to share the benefits with First Nations.


“My sense is we’re not of the view that a hard and fast revenue sharing arrangement is what’s in order here. There are other ways that benefits can be shared. There are a number of ways that First Nations already benefit from resource development,” Schneider says.


Schneider says that First Nations have access to developing resources “on their own as with the recent forestry agreement that was announced.”


The mineral rights in question are from a recent deal that Ottawa made with Saskatchewan, relating to property — including some former First Nations reserve lands — that were sold to soldiers returning from the Second World War.


In December, the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations called for an immediate meeting with Ottawa and the province, saying the deal needed First Nations consent.