Under the Alberta Land Stewardship Act, the Land Use Secretariat is required “At least once every 5 years, to appoint a committee under section 63(3)(b) to evaluate the objectives and audit the policies of regional plans for the purpose of determining whether either or both are meeting the purposes of this Act, and to make a public report to the Stewardship Minister on the evaluation and audit.”
The purposes of the Act are to provide a means:
a) for government to give direction in identifying economic, environmental and social objectives;
b) to plan for the future, recognizing the need to meet the needs of current and future generations including Indigenous peoples;
c) for coordination of decisions concerning land, species, human settlement, natural resources and the environment; and
d) to create legislation and policy that enable sustainable development by responding to the cumulative effect of human endeavours and other events.
The government, through a competitive Request For Proposal bid process, selected Elevate Consulting as the committee to conduct the SSRP 5-year Evaluation.
In its 5-Year evaluation of the South Saskatchewan Regional Plan, the committee determined the SSRP objectives and strategies fully meet purposes b and d of the Act (see above), and partially meets purposes a and c.
The committee determined that the plan does not fully meet the requirements of the Act, citing concerns with delays in releasing progress reports, effective monitoring and tracking of the implementation of objectives and strategies, and meeting reporting requirements included in the regulatory details.
For more information, read the South Saskatchewan Regional Plan 5-Year Evaluation Report