Evolving Canadian Federalism

AuthorKathy L. Brock/Geoffrey Hale
 
Evolving Canadian Federalism
Canada came into existence as a parliamentary federation amid
mixed reactions on  July . After years of negotiations in
the colonies resulting in the Quebec resolutions and subsequent
amendments at Charlottetown, the Confederation deal was f‌inal-
ized at the Westminster Palace hotel in London by the Canadian
delegation of sixteen political leaders from the four signing colonies.
ese sixty-nine resolutions served as the drafting instructions for
the British North America Act passed by the British Parliament. e
British government and Members of Parliament had relatively little
interest in the debate and made just a few fairly minor amend-
ments. ese changes included replacing “e Kingdom of Canada”
with the “Dominion of Canada” and alterations to the division of
powers that tended to expand federal jurisdiction slightly. Specif-
ically, they moved penitentiaries (previously provincial) and sea
coast and inland f‌isheries (previously concurrent) to federal juris-
diction, immigration and agriculture to concurrent jurisdiction
(previously provincial) with federal paramountcy, and added an
appeal to the federal government for provincial decisions regarding
denominational schools. However, they also gave provinces control

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