The Nova Scotia Legislature

The House will resume on:
October 13, 2016

Can the public give input on bills before the House of Assembly?

Yes. After a bill passes second reading in the House of Assembly, it is referred to either the Law Amendments Committee (public bills) or the Private and Local Bills Committee (private and local bills). The public can provide input at this stage.

How do I present my views on a bill to the committee?

Typically, persons or groups interested in presenting their views on a bill to the committee appear before the committee.

If you are interested in presenting on a particular bill, you should advise the Legislative Counsel Office as soon as possible after the bill is introduced so your name can be added to the list of presenters.

For a list of current bills before the House, see the status of bills.

How will I know when to appear?

The time and location for the hearings is determined by the Chair of the committee, at the direction of the committee. The Legislative Counsel Office will notify you when the time and date of the meeting is determined.

Notices of committee meetings are also available in our calendar and are posted on Twitter.

What if I’m not able to appear or do not wish to appear before the committee in person?

The committee accepts written submissions through the Legislative Counsel Office.

Submissions can be in any format (typed or handwritten) but they must be addressed to the committee and include your name. To avoid delays and ensure that your submission is received on time, it is recommended that you submit either by fax or email.

What is the deadline for written submissions?

There is no deadline, but in order for your submission to be considered by the committee, it should be received after a bill is introduced but before the last committee meeting on the bill. Written submissions received after the last meeting on the bill will be distributed to committee members, but your input will not influence changes to the bill, if any.

Since the duration of committee hearings depends on both the will of the committee and the number of presenters, it is best to make your submission as early as possible.

Once the bill passes the committee stage, it is referred back to the House of Assembly and there is no further opportunity for public input.

Is my presentation or submission private?

No. Committee meetings are open to the public and presentations or submissions become part of the public record.

Documents distributed to committee members at a meeting, or written submissions sent to the committee, are kept in print at the Legislative Counsel Office and at the Legislative Library. Law Amendments Committee submissions are also available on our website. If you do not submit any documentation, your name will appear on the record as a presenter.