Canada Gazette Part II: Consolidated Index (Tip of the Week)

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By Ken Fox

On September 19 I told you about the online federal Table of Public Statues. But is there an accompanying table of regulations, you ask? Well sure, sort of.

To find such a table, you need to leave the Justice Laws website, and enter the online Canada Gazette. Part II of the Gazette is the Official Regulations, the best version to use as evidence in court. But unlike the Justice Laws website, where the regulations are organized alphabetically, the Gazette orders them by date of publication. So to find a known regulation, you need to know the date of its release in the Gazette.

For that purpose, the Justice Department offers a Consolidated Index to Part II. Like other parts of the Gazette, the consolidated index has periodic releases, which can be navigated in the left-panel menu. But since the index is consolidated, you really only ever need to access the latest release, as it contains the entire table.

So begin by clicking on Vol. 148 (2014) in the list of releases (it’s the only one not preceded by “ARCHIVED”). From there, locate the latest release, which covers the period January 1, 1955, to June 30, 2014. The Index is available in HTML and PDF formats. The first time you access the index, I would recommend PDF, as the organization of the tables is clearer in that format. Click on ARCHIVED — PDF 3,629 KB / Official. Note that only the PDF version is actually “official” – and the document itself is marked with the Seal of the Crown, indicating official status.

Scroll down to the Table of Contents on the 3rd page and note that there are two similarly-named tables that constitute the index:

I—TABLE OF REGULATIONS, STATUTORY INSTRUMENTS (OTHER THAN REGULATIONS) AND OTHER DOCUMENTS

II—TABLE OF REGULATIONS, STATUTORY INSTRUMENTS (OTHER THAN REGULATIONS) AND OTHER DOCUMENTS ARRANGED BY STATUTE

There is a note saying that Table I is organized alphabetically by title. Based on the titles of these tables, you may assume that the two tables have similar content, but are differently ordered. Well reasoned, but you are wrong. Table I has but a single function – to provide the title of the enabling act of a regulation. The regulations are listed alphabetically in bold text, with their statutes nested under them in plain text:

FedLeg4

The Index’s main substantive content is contained in Table II, but as that table is organized by enabling statute, Table I provides this key piece of data for situations where you know only the regulation title.

In Table II, further down in the same PDF document, the bolded, all-caps headings are the titles of statutes. The bold subheadings with conventional capitalization are the regulations and other subordinate legislation passed under that statute. This is followed by detailed information about each regulation (SOR) or statutory instrument (SI):

FedLeg5

In the case of a regulation, such as the Agricultural Marketing Programs Regulations above, there is a section-by-section history, providing a regulation number and section numbers for each addition and amendment to the main regulation. The Regulation number can then be used to find the amendment in Part II of the Gazette – which will be the topic for next week’s tip.

This is Part 3 of a multi-part series on researching federal legislation:  Part 1Part 2 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7

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