The NWT Surface Rights Board is established to resolve matters in dispute relating to access to Gwich’in, Sahtu, Tłı̨chǫ and Inuvialuit lands, and the waters overlying those lands, as well as, surface access to land in unsettled areas. The Board is responsible for setting out the terms and conditions on which an individual or entity may access those lands and waters; and the appropriate compensation to be paid in respect of that access.
Government of the Northwest Territories
Department of Lands
Surface Rights Board Act (NWT)
The Board consists of no fewer than five and no more than nine members, including the Chairperson.
Among the individuals appointed, at least one member is a resident of each of the following regions: Inuvik or the Northwest Territories portion of the Inuvialuit Settlement Region (ISR), Gwich’in Settlement Area, Sahtu Settlement Area, and the Mowhi Gogha Dè Niitlèè.
There are five alternate members. Each is subject to the same residency requirement as that member.
The Chairperson is appointed by the Minister of Lands.
There is no Vice-Chairperson.
No quorum is stipulated in the legislation; however, Board established bylaws state quorum consists of a minimum of three members (including the Chairperson).
A member holds office for a term of five years and may be eligible for reappointment.
A member may hold office for up to two consecutive terms.
Time and Travel Requirements
Meetings may be held at times and locations in the Northwest Territories that the Board considers necessary or desirable for proper conduct of its business.
A member may participate in a meeting by any means of communication, including by telephone.
Members shall receive remuneration according to Executive Council classification and Financial Management Board Secretariat directives:
Category – Regulatory/Quasi-Judicial
Chairperson - $400 per day
Member - $325 per diem
Chair and members – 50% per half-day (i.e., 3.5 hours or less), for work on board business for each day of meetings
The Chairperson is the Chief Executive Officer of the Board and exercises the powers and performs the functions set out in the Board's bylaws.
All members must be a resident of the Northwest Territories.
If a member or alternate ceases to meet the applicable residency requirement, the Minister shall send written notification to that member and their appointment is terminated.
The Minister shall appoint members and alternates who have knowledge or experience that will assist the Board in fulfilling its purpose, including Aboriginal traditional knowledge and experience in relation to that knowledge.
Members appointed in relation to a specific region shall have considerable knowledge in respect of lands, environment or Aboriginal traditional knowledge in relation to the applicable settlement area or the Mowhi Gogha Dè Niitlèè.
If a member is absent or incapacitated or if their office is vacant, the alternate member who is subject to the same residency requirements as that member, shall perform the functions normally performed by that member.
Members and alternates hold office during good behaviour and may be removed by the Minister for cause.
All disputes in a particular settlement area must heard by a panel, of which at least one member must be a resident of that particular area.
|Position||Appointee||Term Start||Term Expiry||Number of Terms||Appointed By||Nominating Authority|
|Louie Azzolini||2015-04-01||2020-03-31||1st term||Minister of Lands|
|Elizabeth Wright||2015-04-01||2020-03-31||1st term||Minister of Lands|
(Inuvik or the NWT portion of the ISR)
|Edwin Amos||2018-12-13||2023-12-13||1st term||Minister of Lands|
|Mike Vaydik||2015-04-01||2020-03-31||1st term||Minister of Lands|
|Danny Bayha||2015-04-01||2020-03-31||1st term||Minister of Lands|
|Ian McCrae||2015-04-01||2020-03-31||1st term||Minister of Lands|
|Vern Christensen||2015-04-01||2020-03-31||1st term||Minister of Lands|