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Monday, July 4, 2011

B.C. landowners lose bid for judicial review of Mediation and Arbitration Board decision

The B.C. Supreme Court has refused a request for judicial review by landowners Kenneth and Loretta Vause of a decision of the Mediation and Arbitration Board (now the Surface Rights Board).  The Board had made various orders regarding flow lines to be constructed by Spectra Energy Midstream Corporation.  During the course of proceedings before a mediator and then an arbitrator pursuant to the Petroleum and Natural Gas Act, the landowners and Spectra had come to an agreement over the proposed routing for the lines.  However, the revised routing would require the inclusion of an additional parcel of land owned by the Vauses. 

The Board eventually made an order permitting the flow lines using the agreed revised route and awarding compensation to the landowners.  The landowners made several attempts to challenge the Board's decision, all of which were dismissed by the Board and by the B.C. Supreme Court.  In a decision released this week, the Supreme Court again declined a request by the landowners for judicial review, this time on the basis that the earlier decisions of the Board could not affect the additional parcel of land because it was not named in the style of case (the case's name).  In other words, they argued that the Board was without jurisdiction to add that parcel of land to the order because it did not form part of the original application by Spectra.

Read the decision at: Vause v. British Columbia (Mediation and Arbitration Board).