Deputy Director of Wildlife v. Environmental Appeal Board and Lynn Ross

File Number:
BCJ 1162

Decision Date: April 28, 1998

Court: B.C.C.A., Donald, Hall, Proudfoot, JJ.A.

Cite: Vancouver Registry No. CA023459

(For the background, see the B.C. Supreme Court decision.)

The Court of Appeal upheld the Supreme Court’s decision that the Board had made an order that exceeded its jurisdiction under the then-applicable legislation. The Court found that the Board erred in concluding that the 14-day period discussed by the Deputy Director was an order of the Deputy Director. Thus, because it was not an order, the Board could not review it. In addition, the Court noted that the Ministry had a published policy that the right to transfer a certificate is forfeited upon cancellation of the certificate.

The Court also agreed with the lower court that the standard of review applicable to the provisions of the Wildlife Act at issue in the case was the “correctness” standard, because it was a jurisdictional limiting provision. However, the Court of Appeal noted that the Board should be recognized as having special expertise in environmental matters. Therefore, the standard of review on questions of law within the Board’s jurisdiction would be “patently unreasonable”.