MUNICIPAL TAX ASSESSMENT AND SECTION 96 OF THE BRITISH NORTH AMERICA ACT: THE OLYMPIA BOWLING ALLEYS CASE
Keywords:Constitutional Law, Municipal Law
AbstractThe majority judgement of the Supreme Court of Canada in Toronto v. Olympia Edward Recreation Club Ltd. proclaimed that a provincially or municipally appointed tribunal cannot be constitutionally vested with authority to determine assessability or liability of property or persons to municipal taxation. How a well-worn system of municipal tax assessment could be suddenly fractured is not spelt out in the constitution. But in the judicially-nourished luxuriance of section 96, it’s on the menu and served up by a federal appointing power that has become a barrier to freedom of provincial adjudicative and administrative organisation, even though no issue of legislative power as between Parliament and the provincial legislatures is engaged. Bora Laskin examines what he perceives as a procrustean trend in the Court’s approach to municipal tax assessment.
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