The front page of the LLRIB federal court decision.

A federal court decision has been released in relation to the Lac La Ronge Indian Band’s spring election process.

Henry McKenzie and six other band members filed action for a judicial review in March, in part questioning whether LLRIB’s Chief and Council had jurisdiction to enact new regulations that changed an election candidate’s eligibility.

Federal Judge Michael D. Manson’s ruling finds those LLRIB regulation changes, which were enacted by Band Council Resolution in the weeks leading up to the election, are valid. The 20-page decision was released publicly on Friday.

He writes that previous Election Acts entitle Chief and Council “to make regulations for the administration of the Act, without consulting the members of the band. A rule establishing who is qualified to run in an election and the procedure to determine when a candidate had a conflict of interest is a reasonable interpretation of the definition of ‘procedures and other administrative rules.’”

The applicants’ lawyer had argued otherwise late last month, saying the new regulations overreach their administrative capacity.

Manson says “whether or not indebtedness is an appropriate criterion” for a candidate is not the federal court’s role to decide, nor is it his role to decide “whether or not the procedures used in the March 31, 2017 election were procedurally fair.”

He also found that the electoral officer does not need to be or have been a chief, which was another argument posed by the applicants.

Manson’s decision did not consider a number of portions of affidavits from David Ratt, Thomas Ratt, and Keith Olsen as well as striking an entire affidavit from McKenzie because they did not follow Federal Court rules.

Finally, Manson orders the applicants to pay the costs for the respondents.

The full decision can be read here.