Provisional Government [Manitoba], Convention of Forty, Bill of Rights (2 February 1870)
By: Provisional Government (Manitoba)
Citation: Manitoba, Reconstituted Debates of the Convention of Forty/La Grande Convention, 1870, 2010 at 101-102.
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Bill of Rights
1.That in view of the present exceptional position of the North West duties upon goods imported into the Country shall continue as at present (except in the case of spirituous liquors) for three years, and for such further time as may elapse until there be uninterrupted railroad communication between Red River Settlt [sic] and St. Paul, and also Steam Communication between Red River Settlmt [sic] & Lake Superior.
2.That as long as this Country remains a Territory in the Dominion of Canada there shall be no direct taxation except such as may be imposed by the local legislature for municipal or other local purposes.
3.That during the time this Country shall remain in the position of a Territory in the Dominion of Canada all military, civil and other public expenses in connection with the general government of the country — or that have hitherto been borne by the public funds of the Settlement, beyond the receipt of the above mentioned duties, shall be met by the Dominion of Canada.
4.That while the burden of public expense in this Territory is borne by Canada, the Country be governed by a Lieutt. Governor from Canada, and a Legislature, three members of whom, being heads of Depts [sic] of the Government shall be nominated by the Governor General of Canada.
5.That after the expiration of this exceptional period, the Country shall be governed as regards its local affairs, as the Provinces of Ontario and Quebec are now governed, by a Legislature by the people, and a Ministry responsible to it, under a Lieut. Governor appointed by the Governor General of Canada.
6.That there shall be no interference by the Dominion Parlt [sic] in the local affairs of this Territory other than is allowed in the Provinces; and that this Territory shall have and enjoy in all respects, the same privileges, advantages [&] aids in meeting the expenses of this Territory as other Provinces have and enjoy.
7.That while the North West remains a Territory the Legislature have a right to pass all laws local to the Territory over the veto of the Lt Governor [sic] by a two-thirds vote
8.A Homestead & pre-emption law.
9. That while the North West remains a Territory the sum of $25.000 [sic] a year be appropriated for schools, roads & bridges.
10. That all public buildings be at the expense of the Dominion Treasury.
11. That there shall be guaranteed uninterrupted Steam Communication to Lake Superior within 5 years And also the establishment by rail of a connection with the American railway as soon as it reaches the International line.
12. Struck out.
13. That the English & French languages be common in the Legislature & Courts And that all public documents & Acts of the Legislature be published in both languages.
14. That the Judge of the Supreme Court speak the French and English languages.
15. That treaties be concluded between the Dominion and the [inserted] Several Indian tribes of the Country as som [sic: soon] as possible.
16. That until the population of the Country entitles us to more, we have 3 representatives in the Canadian Parliament — 1 in the Senate & 2 in the Legislative Assembly.
17. That all the properties, rights & privileges as hitherto enjoyed by us be respected, and that the recognition & arrangement of local customs usages & privileges be made under the control of the Local Legislature
18. That the two Mile hay privilege be converted into fee simple ownership.
This last article was under discussion when the Committee adjourned the Feb 2d