2 TimelineFrom 1763 – 1860s British North America was governed by Great Britain with their interests in mind.1860s – US Civil War was ongoing and Canadians felt the states would try to take over.1864 – 36 men met in PEI and Quebec to discuss unification. NB, NS, PQ, and ON agreed on framework for a union and took this to Britain for approval.1867 – The British North America Act was passed in British Parliament and was proclaimed into law on July 1. John A. Macdonald became the first prime minister.
3 BNA Act, 1867Rules on how the country should be governed and what kind of country it would be.Was originally meant to be a constitution for a colony, meaning that laws could not be made without British approval.When the final document was approved it recognized Canada as a separate political entity. John A. Macdonald had to determine what kind of country it would be.
4 SourcesUS Constitution and Bill of Rights – too little power to the central government and too much to the states.Unitary System – Britain’s system with centralized parliament led by a prime minister. Did not seem practical for a large country.Federal System – the compromise between the two types of systems. Would have 2 levels: central government and provincial government.
5 Division of PowersSection 91 of the BNA Act outlines the federal powers that are uniform across CanadaSection 92 of the BNA Act outlines the provincial powers.Provinces individually decided which responsibilities they would give to municipalities.Chart on page 54 outlines the federal and provincial responsibilities.Residual Powers – Federal responsibility to make laws in legislative areas not assigned to the provinces (airports and telecommunications).
6 Enacting ChangeIntra vires – When the government passes a law within the government’s jurisdictionUltra vires – When the government tries to enact a law beyond their power. (ie – A government may not make changes to criminal law where it is federal jurisdiction).