Nova Scotia Labour and Advanced Education (formerly the department of Labour and Workplace Development) has embarked on a review of the current technical safety legislative framework. The review focusses on how the current legislation may be streamlined to reflect technological change, improve consistency, and meet the needs of a changing economy now and in the future, while ensuring that minimum regulated safety standards are achieved.
The following Acts are included in the review:
The intent was to create one Act that would initially consolidate the Steam Boilers and Pressure Vessels Act and the Crane Operators and Power Engineers Act; and become the enabling legislation for the Fuel Safety Regulations (which are currently under the Fire Safety Act). The new Act would complement -- but not replace -- the other above-named Acts until future phases of the review.
On May 27, 2008, the House of Assembly passed Bill No. 167 “An Act to Improve and Promote Technical Safety in the Province”, also known as the Technical Safety Act.
We prepared a Discussion Paper in July of 2007 which presented information and raised issues for consideration in relation to a new technical safety legislative framework for the Province of Nova Scotia. The Discussion Paper was widely distributed for consultation. The consultation period ended in October 2007. See the Discussion Paper for more information about the review.
The feedback was mostly positive, as most stakeholders applaud the proposal to create one Act for technical safety. Click here for a summary of the consultation feedback.
Meaningful consultation with industry will take place throughout the entire regulatory review process. Most of the changes to the regulations are to align with the new Act; however, the Steam Boilers and Pressure Vessels Regulation will require a more detailed review as it has become outdated.
TECHNICAL SAFETY ADVISORY GROUP TO THE MINISTER
The Department embarked on a review of the current legislative framework under the leadership of an in-house Steering Committee. As well, an Advisory Group to the Minister, consisting of key stakeholders, was convened. The membership of the Advisory Group is as follows:
The Advisory Group provided high-level preliminary advice to the Steering Committee on a new technical safety legislative framework for Nova Scotia. Based on this advice, the Department consulted with the broader stakeholder community by issuing a Discussion Paper.
The consultation feedback was reviewed by the Steering Committee, which provided advice to the stakeholder Advisory Group. The Advisory Group reviewed the stakeholder feedback and Steering Committee advice, which lead to 19 recommendations to the Minister for a modernized technical safety framework.
In particular, the Advisory Group recommended that the following statutes be consolidated into one Act for technical safety:
As well, the Advisory Group recommended that the consolidated Act become the enabling legislation for the Fuel Safety Regulations (which are currently under the Fire Safety Act).
The creation of the new Act would initially consolidate the Steam Boilers and Pressure Vessels Act and the Crane Operators and Power Engineers Act; and complement -- but not replace -- the other above-named Acts until future phases of the review.
In addition, the Advisory Group recommended that the new Act should:
As well, the Advisory Group recommended that the technical safety framework as a whole should:
Finally, the Advisory Group recommended that the Department should explore, analyze, and maximize program delivery options for technical safety in Nova Scotia
The Department has no issues with, and has accepted, the recommendations of the Advisory Group.
PHASES OF THE REVIEW
The Act will come into force upon proclamation, in early 2009. This delay will allow the infrastructure of the new framework to be designed and implemented. For instance, the proposed streamlined advisory and appeal structures will require the consolidation or repeal of existing advisory / appeal boards and processes.
A phase-in approach is recommended for the repeal of existing Acts due to the time and work necessary to update, and consult with stakeholders on, the regulations. Each phase entails proclamation of provisions repealing an Act(s); and the review and implementation of an updated regulation.
The implementation schedule is subject to change.