The Transportation Appeal Tribunal of Canada replaced the Civil Aviation Tribunal in 2003 originally established under Part IV of the Aeronautics Act in 1986. On the recommendation of the Minister of Transport, pursuant to section 73 of the Transportation Appeal Tribunal of Canada Act, assented to on December 18, 2001, being Chapter 29 of the Statutes of Canada, 2001, the Act officially came into force on June 30, 2003. The Tribunal is available to hear Review and Appeal Hearings emanating from the air, marine and rail sectors.
Sections 2 and 3 of the Transportation Appeal Tribunal of Canada Act amends the Aeronautics Act, the Canada Shipping Act, the Marine Transportation Security Act, the Railway Safety Act, the Canada Transportation Act, the International Bridges and Tunnels Act and the Canada Marine Act to establish the jurisdiction and decision-making authorities of the Tribunal under those Acts.
The Tribunal's principal mandate, as a multi-transportation modal administrative law review body, is to hold Review and Appeal Hearings at the request of interested parties with respect to certain administrative actions taken under various federal transportation Acts.
Program Objective and Description
The objective of the program is to provide the transportation community with the opportunity to have enforcement and licensing decisions of the Minister of Transport reviewed by an independent quasi-judicial body.
The Minister's enforcement and licensing decisions may include the issuance of orders, the imposition of monetary penalties or the suspension, cancellation, refusal to renew, or the refusal to issue or amend documents of entitlement on medical or other grounds. The person or corporation affected is referred to as the document holder.
These decisions are reviewed through a two-level hearing process: Review and Appeal. All hearings are held expeditiously and informally, in accordance with the administrative law rules of fairness and natural justice.
At the conclusion of a hearing, the Tribunal may confirm the Minister's decision, substitute its own decision, or refer the matter back to the Minister for reconsideration.
It is noteworthy to mention that the increased jurisdiction for the Tribunal will enlarge the caseload considerably over the next few years.
The Tribunal's Chairperson is also its Chief Executive Officer. The Chairperson is responsible for the direction and supervision of the work necessary to facilitate the functions of the Tribunal. The Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson and immediate staff account for twelve full-time equivalents.
Twenty-six part-time Members were in office during 2011-2012. Members are drawn from across Canada and are appointed by Governor in Council on the basis of their transportation knowledge and expertise. During fiscal year 2011-2012, four part-time Members were renewed and six new part-time Members were appointed.
The basic principles governing the Tribunal are those of independence and transportation expertise. The sound and competent execution of the Tribunal's mandate determines its effectiveness in dealing with the national transportation community.
The Tribunal offers its services in both official languages of Canada. It is also itinerant, in the sense that its hearings take place throughout Canada, at the convenience of the parties to the extent possible.
In enforcement matters, the location will normally be where the alleged infraction occurred, or the nearest practical alternative, so that witnesses for the parties may present themselves with minimum displacement costs.
In medical cases, hearings are held at the location which is nearest to the residence of the document holder and attainable by way of commercial transportation.
* Eleven full-time equivalents (FTEs) are utilized by the continuing full-time employees, including the Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson. The 26 part-time Members use approximately three full-time equivalents. During fiscal year 2011-2012, four part-time Members were renewed and six new part-time Members were appointed.
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