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MICMAC NATION OF GESPEG SELF-GOVERNMENT NEGOTIATION FRAMEWORK AGREEMENT

BETWEEN
the MICMAC NATION OF GESPEG, hereinafter referred to as "Gespeg ", as represented by the Chief of its Council;

The GOVERNMENT OF CANADA, hereinafter referred to as "Canada ", as represented by the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development;

AND
the GOVERNMENT OF QUEBEC, hereinafter referred to as "Quebec ", as represented by the Minister Responsible for Native Affairs and the Minister Responsible for Canadian Intergovernmental Affairs.


PREAMBLE

WHEREAS Gespeg, Canada and Quebec enter, with good faith, into negotiations regarding Gespeg self-government;

WHEREAS Gespeg was recognized as an "Indian Band " on November 13, 1973 (P.C. 1973-3571) and is, in actual fact, a non-land based Indian band;

WHEREAS Gespeg considers that it should be entitled to rights and assume responsibilities in like manner as other Indian bands in Canada and Quebec.

THE PARTIES AGREE AS FOLLOWS:

1. Preamble

The preamble is part of the framework agreement.

2.
Definitions

"Micmac Nation of Gespeg" Designates the formal name of the Indian band of Gespeg. 
"Agreement-in-Principle" Designates an agreement preliminary to the Final Agreement and which will address, in some degree of detail, the full range of issues to be covered by the Final Agreement. The three parties to the agreement will be the same as those signatories to the framework agreement. 
"Final Agreement" Designates the final version of the agreement based on the Agreement-in-Principle on Gespeg self-government. The three parties to the agreement will be the same as those signatories to the Framework Agreement and Agreement-in-Principle. 
"Implementation Plan" Plan specifying the activities, timeframes and financial and other resources the parties will agree upon to give effect to the Final Agreement. 
"Powers" Authority held by Gespeg in specific areas and according to the provisions of the Final Agreement. 
"Main Table" Negotiation table headed by the Chief Negotiator for each of the three parties and the principal body for this negotiation. 
"Sector table(s)" Negotiation table(s) created and mandated by the Main Table. 

3. Purpose of the negotiation

The purpose of the negotiation is to specify the nature and scope of self-government to be exercised by Gespeg in the agreed areas.

4. Purpose of the framework agreement

The purpose of this framework agreement is to determine the subject matters that will be negotiated and to establish the most realistic timeframe possible.

5. Subject matters to be negotiated

5.1 The parties agree to negotiate the following subject matters:
5.1.1 The governing structure of Gespeg, its powers and procedures, accountability and funding;
5.1.2 The practice of traditional activities: hunting, fishing, trapping, harvesting and related activities;
5.1.3 Economic, social and cultural development;
5.1.4 Membership to Gespeg;
5.1.5 Taxation;
5.1.6 Land base;
5.1.7 Application of the Indian Act;
5.1.8 Where appropriate, the priority of application of laws;
5.1.9 Any other matter deemed relevant by the parties.

5.2 The parties shall specify the legal scope and ratification process of the Agreement-in-Principle and Final Agreement, as well as the amendment procedures and dispute resolution mechanisms of the Final Agreement. The Final Agreement will include an Implementation Plan.

6. Process and timeframe

6.1 The negotiation of an Agreement-in-Principle followed by a Final Agreement will be conducted at a tripartite main table where each party will be represented by a Chief Negotiator. The Chief Negotiator of each party may be assisted by other professional resources. The main table may issue mandates to working groups and sector tables.

6.2 The parties anticipate that an Agreement-in-Principle will be concluded within two years of the signing of this Framework Agreement. A Final Agreement, including an Implementation Plan, will be concluded within the following year.

6.3 With the agreement of the parties, certain chapters or parts thereof could be implemented prior to the ratification of the Agreement-in-Principle or the Final Agreement.

6.4 Generally speaking, discussions at the tripartite main table will be initiated on the basis of the Gespeg proposals, and may result in counterproposals. However, Quebec or Canada may also submit proposals.

6.5 At each negotiating session, the Gespeg negotiator will submit to the tripartite main table a consolidated version of the proposed agreement, which, upon approval by the negotiators, will be used as the basis for the conduct of negotiations.

7. Scope of the Framework Agreement

7.1 Nothing in this Framework Agreement shall be construed as creating, denying or recognizing rights, or as creating legal obligations.
7.2 Without restricting the scope of article 7.1, this Framework Agreement is concluded without any prejudice to the existing aboriginal and treaty rights of Gespeg, which could exist pursuant to section 35 of the Constitution Act,.1982.
7.3 Furthermore, it is agreed that this Framework Agreement does not constitute a treaty within the meaning of the Constitution Act,1982, nor within the meaning of Section 88 of the Indian Act.
7.4 This Framework Agreement and the existence of this negotiation shall not be construed or used to impede any initiative able to resolve any or all particular problems as the case may be.

8. Programs of the federal and provincial governments

This Framework Agreement shall not affect the ability of Indians, members of Gespeg, and Gespeg to benefit from and be eligible for the various programs and services of Canada and Quebec, in accordance with the terms of these programs as amended from time to time.

9. Funding of negotiations

Canada's funding to support self-government negotiations will be established on an annual basis and determined according to the working plan the parties will jointly agree upon.

10. Term of the agreement

This Framework Agreement will end within three years of its signing unless the parties agree upon a new timeframe.

Signature gouvernementale
Secrétariat aux affaires autochtones
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