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Provinces and territories of Canada

"O Canada we stand on guard for thee" Stained Glass, Yeo Hall, Royal Military College of Canada features arms of the Canadian provinces and territories (1965)

The provinces and territories of Canada combine to make up the world's second-largest country by area. In 1867, three provinces of British North AmericaNew Brunswick, Nova Scotia and the Province of Canada (which, on the formation of Canada, was divided into Ontario and Quebec)—were united to form the new nation. Since then, Canada's external borders have changed several times, and the country has grown from the original four provinces to ten provinces and three territories. The ten provinces are Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, and Saskatchewan. The three territories are Northwest Territories, Nunavut, and Yukon.

The major difference between a Canadian province and a territory is that provinces receive their power and authority from the Constitution Act, 1867 (formerly called the British North America Act, 1867), whereas territorial governments have powers delegated to them by the federal government. This means that while a change to the division of powers between the federal government and the provinces requires a constitutional amendment, a similar change affecting the territories can be performed unilaterally by the federal Parliament or government. Moreover, in modern Canadian constitutional theory, the provinces are considered to be co-sovereign divisions, and each province has its own "Crown" represented by the lieutenant governor, whereas the territories are not sovereign, but simply parts of the federal realm, and have a commissioner who represents the federal government.

Contents

  • Location of provinces and territories 1
  • Provinces 2
    • Provincial legislature buildings 2.1
  • Territories 3
    • Territorial legislature buildings 3.1
  • Territorial evolution 4
  • Government 5
  • Provincial parties 6
  • Ceremonial territory 7
  • Proposed provinces and territories 8
  • See also 9
  • References 10
  • Further reading 11
  • External links 12

Location of provinces and territories

A clickable map of Canada exhibiting its ten provinces and three territories, and their capitals.


Provinces

Flag Shield Province Postal
abbreviation
Capital[1] Largest city
(by population)[2]
Entered Confederation[3] Population
(July 2014)[4]
Area: land (km2)[5] Area: water (km2)[5] Area: total (km2)[5] Official language(s)[6] Federal Parliament: Commons seats[7] Federal Parliament: Senate seats[7]
Ontario ON Toronto Toronto July 1, 1867 13,678,700 917,741 158,654 1,076,395 English 121 24
Quebec QC Quebec City Montreal July 1, 1867 8,214,700 1,356,128 185,928 1,542,056 French 78 24
Nova Scotia NS Halifax Halifax July 1, 1867 942,700 53,338 1,946 55,284 English 11 10
New Brunswick NB Fredericton Saint John July 1, 1867 753,900 71,450 1,458 72,908 English
French
10 10
Manitoba MB Winnipeg Winnipeg July 15, 1870 1,282,000 553,556 94,241 647,797 English, 14 6
British Columbia BC Victoria Vancouver July 20, 1871 4,631,300 925,186 19,549 944,735 English 42 6
Prince Edward Island PE Charlottetown Charlottetown July 1, 1873 146,300 5,660 0 5,660 English 4 4
Saskatchewan SK Regina Saskatoon September 1, 1905 1,125,400 591,670 59,366 651,036 English 14 6
Alberta AB Edmonton Calgary September 1, 1905 4,121,700 642,317 19,531 661,848 English 34 6
Newfoundland and Labrador NL St. John's St. John's March 31, 1949 527,000 373,872 31,340 405,212 English 7 6
Total provinces 35,423,700 5,490,918 572,013 6,062,931 335 102

Notes:

A.^ De facto; French has limited constitutional status
B.^ Charter of the French Language; English has limited constitutional status
C.^ Nova Scotia dissolved cities in 1996 in favour of regional municipalities; its largest regional municipality is therefore substituted
D.^ Nova Scotia has very few bilingual statutes (three in English and French; one in English and Polish); some Government bodies have legislated names in both English and French
E.^ Section Sixteen of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms
F.^ Manitoba Act

Provincial legislature buildings

Territories

There are three territories in Canada. Unlike the provinces, the territories of Canada have no inherent jurisdiction and have only those powers delegated to them by the federal government.[8][9][10] They include all of mainland Canada north of latitude 60° north and west of Hudson Bay, as well as all islands north of the Canadian mainland (from those in James Bay to the Canadian Arctic islands). The following table lists the territories in order of precedence (each province has precedence over all the territories, regardless of the date each territory was created).

Territories of Canada
Flag Arms Territory Postal
abbreviation
Capital and largest city[1] Entered Confederation[3] Population
(May 2011)[4]
Area: land (km2)[5] Area: water (km2)[5] Area: total (km2)[5] Official languages Federal Parliament: Commons seats[7] Federal Parliament: Senate seats[7]
Northwest Territories NT Yellowknife July 15, 1870 41,462 1,183,085 163,021 1,346,106 Chipewyan, Cree, English, French, Gwich’in, Inuinnaqtun, Inuktitut, Inuvialuktun, North Slavey, South Slavey, Tłįchǫ[11] 1 1
Yukon YT Whitehorse June 13, 1898 33,897 474,391 8,052 482,443 English
French[12]
1 1
Nunavut NU Iqaluit April 1, 1999 31,906 1,936,113 157,077 2,093,190 Inuinnaqtun, Inuktitut,
English, French[13]
1 1
Total territories 107,265 3,593,589 328,150 3,921,739 3 3

Territorial legislature buildings

Territorial evolution

When Canada was formed in 1867 its provinces were a relatively narrow strip in the southeast, with vast territories in the interior. It grew by adding British Columbia in 1871, P.E.I. in 1873, the British Arctic Islands in 1880, and Newfoundland in 1949; meanwhile, its provinces grew both in size and number at the expense of its territories.
CANADA TIMELINE: Evolution of the borders and the names of Canada's Provinces and Territories

Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia are the original provinces, formed when British North American colonies federated on July 1, 1867, into the Dominion of Canada and by stages began accruing the indicia of sovereignty from the United Kingdom.[14] Ontario and Quebec were united before Confederation as the Province of Canada. Over the following six years, Manitoba, British Columbia, and Prince Edward Island were added as provinces.[14]

The Hudson's Bay Company maintained control of large swathes of western Canada referred to as Rupert's Land until 1870, when it turned the land over to the Government of Canada.[15] Manitoba and the Northwest Territories were created in 1870 from Rupert's Land and the North-Western Territory.[15] The Northwest Territories were vast at first, encompassing all of current northern and western Canada, except for the significant British holdings in the Arctic Islands (including many of the largest islands in the world) and the Colony of British Columbia; the Territories also included the northern two thirds of Ontario and Quebec, and almost all of present Manitoba, the 1870 province of Manitoba originally being confined to a small area in the south of today's province.[16] The remaining Arctic Islands were transferred by Britain to Canada in 1880, adding to the size of the Northwest Territories. On September 1, 1905, a portion of the Northwest Territories south of the 60th parallel north became the provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan.[16] In 1912, the boundaries of Quebec, Ontario and Manitoba were expanded northward: Manitoba's to the 60° parallel, Ontario's to Hudson Bay and Quebec's to encompass the District of Ungava.[17]

1905 Provinces and territories of Canada coat of arms postcard

In 1869, the people of Newfoundland voted to remain a British colony over fears that taxes would increase and the economic policy of the Canadian government would favour mainland industries.[18] In 1907, Newfoundland acquired dominion status.[19] In the middle of the Great Depression in Canada with Newfoundland facing national bankruptcy, the legislature turned over political control to the Commission of Government in 1933.[20] Following Canada's participation in World War II, in a 1948 referendum, a narrow majority of Newfoundland citizens voted to join the Confederation, and on March 31, 1949, Newfoundland became Canada's tenth province.[21] In 2001 it was officially renamed Newfoundland and Labrador.[22]

In 1903, the Alaska Panhandle Dispute fixed British Columbia's northwestern boundary.[23] This was one of only two provinces in Canadian history to have its size reduced. The second reduction, in 1927, occurred when a boundary dispute between Canada and the Dominion of Newfoundland saw Labrador increased at Quebec's expense – this land returned to Canada, as part of the province of Newfoundland, in 1949.[24] In 1999, Nunavut was created from the eastern portion of the Northwest Territories.[25] Yukon lies in the western portion of The North, while Nunavut is in the east.[26]

All three territories combined are the most sparsely populated region in Canada, covering 3,921,739 km2 (1,514,192 sq mi) in land area.[5] They are often referred to as a single region,

  • Provincial and territorial government web sites - Service Canada
  • Provincial and territorial legislature web sites - Parliament of Canada
  • Difference between provinces and territories - Intergovernmental Affairs
  • Provincial and territorial statistics - Statistics Canada
  • Provincial and territorial immigration information - Citizenship and Immigration Canada
  • Canadian governments compared - University of Public Administration

External links

  • A. Paul Pross; Catherine A. Pross. Government Publishing in the Canadian Provinces: a Prescriptive Study. Toronto, Ont.: University of Toronto Press, 1972. ISBN 0-8020-1827-0

Further reading

  1. ^ a b
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b c d
  4. ^ a b
  5. ^ a b c d e f g
  6. ^
  7. ^ a b c d
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^ Northwest Territories Official Languages Act, 1988 (as amended 1988, 1991-1992, 2003)
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^ a b
  15. ^ a b
  16. ^ a b
  17. ^
  18. ^
  19. ^
  20. ^
  21. ^
  22. ^
  23. ^
  24. ^
  25. ^
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  27. ^
  28. ^
  29. ^
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  31. ^ a b
  32. ^
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  40. ^
  41. ^ a b
  42. ^
  43. ^
  44. ^
  45. ^ a b
  46. ^ a b
  47. ^
  48. ^ An amendment to the Constitution of Canada in relation to the following matters may be made only in accordance with subsection 38(1)...notwithstanding any other law or practice, the establishment of new provinces.
  49. ^
  50. ^

References

See also

In late 2004, Prime Minister Paul Martin surprised some observers by expressing his personal support for all three territories gaining provincial status "eventually". He cited their importance to the country as a whole and the ongoing need to assert sovereignty in the Arctic, particularly as global warming could make that region more open to exploitation leading to more complex international waters disputes.[50]

Since Confederation in 1867, there have been several proposals for new Canadian provinces and territories. The Constitution of Canada requires an amendment for the creation of a new province[48] but the creation of a new territory requires only an act of Parliament;[49] therefore, it is easier legislatively to create a territory than a province.

Proposed provinces and territories

The Canadian National Vimy Memorial, near Vimy, Pas-de-Calais, and the Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial, near Beaumont-Hamel, France are ceremonially considered Canadian territory.[46] In 1922, the French government donated the land used for the Vimy Memorial "freely, and for all time, to the Government of Canada the free use of the land exempt from all taxes".[47] The site of the Somme battlefield near Beaumont-Hamel site was purchased in 1921 by the people of the Dominion of Newfoundland.[46] These sites do not, however, enjoy extraterritorial status and are thus subject to French law.

Canadian National Vimy Memorial - For First World War Canadian dead and First World War Canadian missing, presumed dead in France.

Ceremonial territory

Current provincial/territorial governments (2015)
Province Lieutenant Governor/
Commissioner[44]
Premier[45] Party in government[45] Majority/Minority
Ontario Elizabeth Dowdeswell Kathleen Wynne Ontario Liberal Party Majority
Quebec Pierre Duchesne Philippe Couillard Quebec Liberal Party Majority
Nova Scotia John James Grant Stephen McNeil Nova Scotia Liberal Party Majority
New Brunswick Jocelyne Roy-Vienneau Brian Gallant New Brunswick Liberal Party Majority
Manitoba Philip S. Lee Greg Selinger New Democratic Party of Manitoba Majority
British Columbia Judith Guichon Christy Clark British Columbia Liberal Party Majority
Prince Edward Island Frank Lewis Wade MacLauchlan Prince Edward Island Liberal Party Majority
Saskatchewan Vaughn Solomon Schofield Brad Wall Saskatchewan Party Majority
Alberta Lois Mitchell Rachel Notley Alberta New Democratic Party Majority
Newfoundland and Labrador Frank Fagan Paul Davis Progressive Conservative Party of Newfoundland and Labrador Majority
Northwest Territories George Tuccaro Bob McLeod Consensus government None
Yukon Doug Phillips Darrell Pasloski Yukon Party Majority
Nunavut Edna Elias Peter Taptuna Consensus government None

The provincial Progressive Conservative parties are also now separate from the federal Conservative Party, which resulted from a merger between the Progressive Conservatives and the Canadian Alliance.[43] In most provinces the provincial Liberal Party separated from the federal Liberal Party and are now independent entities.

The provincial political climate of Quebec is quite different: the main split is between sovereignty, represented by the Parti Québécois, and federalism, represented primarily by the Quebec Liberal Party.[42]

Most provinces have provincial counterparts to the three national federal parties. However, some provincial parties are not formally linked to the federal parties that share the same name.[41] The New Democratic Party and Green Party of Canada have integrated membership between the provincial and federal wings.[41] Some provinces have regional political parties, such as the Saskatchewan Party.

Provincial parties

Each of the territories elects one Member of Parliament. Canadian territories are each entitled to elect one full voting representative to the Canadian House of Commons.[3] With the sole exception that Prince Edward Island has slightly greater per capita representation than the Northwest Territories,[3] each of the territories has considerably greater per capita representation in the Commons than any of the provinces, although the territories have more limited autonomy than the provinces.[39] Each territory also has one Senator.[40]

Federal, Provincial, and Territorial terminology compared
Jurisdiction Lower House Upper House Head of Government Viceroy
Body Member Body Member
Canada House of Commons Member of Parliament (MP) Senate Senator Prime Minister Governor General
Ontario Legislative Assembly Member of the Provincial Parliament (MPP) n/a* n/a* Premier Lieutenant Governor
Quebec National Assembly Member of the National Assembly (MNA)
Newfoundland
and Labrador
House of Assembly Member of the House of Assembly (MHA)
Nova Scotia Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA)
Other provinces Legislative Assembly
Territories Commissioner
*There were historically provincial Legislative Councils analogous to the federal Senate in Quebec, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Manitoba, Prince Edward Island, and pre-confederation in Lower Canada, Upper Canada, Province of Canada, British Columbia, and Newfoundland. The last of these was abolished in 1968.

Provincial and territorial legislatures have no second chamber like the Canadian Senate. Originally, most provinces did have such bodies, known as legislative councils, but these were subsequently abolished, Quebec's being the last in 1968.[32] In most provinces, the single house of the legislature is known as the Legislative Assembly; the exceptions are Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador, where the chamber is called the House of Assembly, and Quebec where it is called the National Assembly.[33] Ontario has a Legislative Assembly but its members are called Members of the Provincial Parliament or MPPs.[34] The legislative assemblies use a procedure similar to that of the Canadian House of Commons. The head of government of each province, called the premier, is generally the head of the party with the most seats.[35] This is also the case in Yukon, but the Northwest Territories and Nunavut have no political parties at the territorial level.[36] The Queen's representative to each province is the Lieutenant Governor.[37] In each of the territories there is an analogous Commissioner, but he or she represents the federal government rather than the monarch.[38]

Theoretically, provinces have a great deal of power relative to the federal government, with jurisdiction over many public goods such as health care, education, welfare, and intra-provincial transportation.[30] They receive "transfer payments" from the federal government to pay for these, as well as exacting their own taxes.[31] In practice, however, the federal government can use these transfer payments to influence these provincial areas. For instance, in order to receive healthcare funding under Medicare, provinces must agree to meet certain federal mandates, such as universal access to required medical treatment.[31]

Government

In 1999, it was dissolved when it became part of Nunavut. [29], it became an administrative district of the Northwest Territories.Keewatin Region was created as a separate territory from 1876 to 1905, after which, as the District of Keewatin The [28] for ease of administration.several districts' early history it was divided into Northwest Territories For much of the [27]

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