Parliament Starts Pushing CSA for Answers

June 27th, 2013

An Order Paper was filed in Parliament on June 10th by Geoff Regan, MP regarding the conduct of the Canadian Standards Association (“CSA”). 

At law, the recipients at the Standards Council of Canada (“SCC”) are obligated to respond to the Order Paper questions within 45 sitting days of Parliament (likely early October, 2013).

This is a very important development.  If the SCC provides answers to the questions within this Order Paper, the answers will lock both SCC and CSA into clear positions on the conduct, legitimacy and status of CSA.  If the SCC provides ambiguous or misleading answers, or if they violate Parliamentary Standing Order 39(5)(a) and refuse to comply with the Order Paper, then RestoreCSA has grounds for more assertive engagement against both SCC and CSA. 

This Order Paper is the first step in eliminating the functional loophole of murky ambiguity which both concealed and permitted CSA’s many ethical and legal lapses. 

Order Paper Questions:

Does the SCC consider the CSA a commercial entity or a regulatory entity?

Does the SCC believe that CSA owns any portion of Canadian law?

Does the SCC believe that the CSA is afforded an exemption, or exemptions, to Canadian law?

Does the SCC believe that the CSA has the right to restrict public access to Canadian law?

What is the average annual value transferred from CSA to provincial governments in payment for contributions?

What percentage of CSA members’ payments for CEC influence are diverted to non CEC activities?

Does the SCC believe that the CSA practice of trading influence over, or control of, legislative processes in exchange for money or other value consideration is a violation of law?

Does the SCC believe that the CSA practice of leveraging regulatory authority for commercial advantage is an abuse of regulatory authority?

What is the increase in annual revenue experienced by CSA, expressed both in percent and in Canadian dollars, resulting from this decision to tighten the Code development cycle by 25%?

What is the average annual value of royalty payments made to CSA by each of the Government of British Columbia and the Government of Ontario in exchange for the right to print the statutes that CSA claims to own and that these jurisdictions have passed into law?

Does CSA provide access to Canadian law at different costs to different customers according to the values that these customers have at various times paid to CSA?

Does the SCC assure Parliament that CSA does not leverage any value in any form, including contributions of content and labour, from activities related to the CEC for any of its commercial developments including the CSA Handbook?

Does the SCC believe that articles and documentation that are developed as part of a legislative process and that are to constitute part of law in any jurisdiction of Canada may not be concealed from the public for purposes of commercial advantage or financial gain, nor may they be leveraged preferentially, by time or by access or by other advantage, by any entity for purposes external to the legislated passage of those articles or documentation?