Government built on its solid fiscal plan and momentum created by Nova Scotians during the fall 2018 sitting of the 63rd General Assembly, which wrapped up today, Oct. 11.
“We began this sitting with a speech from the throne that highlighted Nova Scotians and their success stories – successes that are propelling our province toward greater prosperity,” said Premier Stephen McNeil. “The legislation that has been passed and the announcements we have made during this sitting will help to create jobs, grow our economy and make once-in-a-generation changes to the way health care is delivered in this province.”
During the sitting, 25 bills were passed, including legislation to reduce red tape for entrepreneurs who want to start new businesses, remove interprovincial trade barriers, formalize Develop Nova Scotia’s role to drive inclusive economic growth and strategic economic infrastructure, replace the outdated Motor Vehicle Act with a new Traffic Safety Act, create a new gender identity option for birth certificates and to prohibit the harmful practise commonly known as conversion therapy.
All parties voted to enact legislation enshrining the first Sunday of each June as Cancer Survivors’ Day.
Among other bills passed:
- legislation to ensure more stringent regulations and oversight of funeral homes and crematoriums
- greater protection for domestic animals
- amendments to the Labour Standards Code to enhance combined pregnancy/parental leave, parental leave and caregiving leave.
There were a number of significant announcements and milestones during the fall sitting:
- funding was announced for nine new physician specialist positions
- fifteen new spaces were added to Dalhousie’s specialist residency program
- next steps for the QEII New Generation project were outlined — Nova Scotia received its highest-ever credit rating from influential bond rating agency Standard and Poor’s, which noted the province is expected to outperform most other provinces in the next two years
- the province’s population hit an all-time high, growing by more than 23,000 since 2015
- part one of the Standard Household Rate came into effect, which allows those receiving income assistance to keep more of the money they earn
- government released its strategy to make Nova Scotia an accessible province by 2030
- a new all-party standing committee on health is being created to provide a dedicated forum for discussion of health-care issues
For a complete list of bills passed during the fall sitting, visit https://nslegislature.ca/legislative-business/bills-statutes/bills/assembly-63-session-2.