A new information resource for Vancouver real propery

I was lucky enough to attend the Pacific Legal Technology Conference last week and heard about a new information resource from the City of Vancouver. It's called Vanmap and there was talk that the precision of free governmental information will change the responsibility of lawyers in real property transations.

Here's the main page, and here's a screenshot of the listing for the Vancouver Convention Centre:

Vanmap screenshot

Research librarian, BC Securities Commission

We are looking for an enthusiastic and experienced research librarian who can provide advanced legal and business research within the field of securities and who can: 

  • work with our users to determine what information they are interested in
  • proactively source industry specific print and electronic resources to meet their needs
  • actively participate in the enhanced delivery of our information and knowledge services
  • provide daily news resources tailored to meet users' needs.

You have strong attention to detail. You are interested in shaping the direction of the knowledge services we provide. You are flexible with your hours of work. 

You have a Master's degree in library studies from an ALA accredited institution and relevant work experience. You are collegial as well as collaborative and you organize your time well. You have a strong work ethic and work well both independently and within a team. Google Analytics experience is an asset. 

We offer a challenging and rewarding work environment, and a competitive compensation package that includes a defined benefit pension plan, four weeks of vacation and a full range of other benefits. 

LawMatters Program Coordinator/Outreach Librarian, Courthouse Libraries BC

Position Title: LawMatters Program Coordinator/Outreach Librarian, Courthouse Libraries BC

Location: Vancouver

Status: Full-time

About Courthouse Libraries BC (CLBC) and LawMatters

Courthouse Libraries BC connects the legal community and the public in British Columbia with legal information. We are a not-for profit organization and a registered charity. We operate LawMatters, a program that helps BC public libraries enhance their legal collections. LawMatters also provides training and support to public librarians so they can better assist the public with their legal information needs.

What you’ll be doing

Director, Knowledge Management Courthouse Libraries BC

Director, Knowledge Management

Courthouse Libraries BC

Vancouver, BC

Bring leadership, innovation and passion for social justice. Enhance quality, breadth and access to information.

Courthouse Libraries BC (CLBC) is a $ 4.5 million, non-profit organization with a mandate to provide access to legal information, resources and information services to members of the legal community and the public of British Columbia. Supporting lawyers in the management of their practices and enhancing social justice through access to information is the ultimate goal. Over the years, CLBC has grown from a bricks and mortar book repository to a multi-channel resource that collects and curates legal information and makes it available when and where it is needed. CLBC answers over 47,000 queries made by lawyers and the public annually and their websites have over 75,000 sessions per month.

Cinderella at the Ball: Legislative Intent in Canadian Courts

Cinderella at the Ball: Legislative Intent in Canadian Courts
Erica Anderson; Susan Barker

This article explores a very specific kind of legal research - finding the intent of a legislature or parliament. Following a review of the history of legislative intent in Canadian courts, the exclusionary rule and an important Canadian case, Rizzo & Rizzo Shoes Ltd, the authors explore what developments in this area of law, statutory interpretation and, legislative intent research, might mean for parliamentary and legislative libraries in Canada. Based on research for their forthcoming Irwin Law book Researching Legislative Intent: A Practical Guide, this revised article was first presented to the Association of Parliamentary Libraries in Canada/ L’Association des bibliothèques parlementaires au Canada (APLIC/ABPAC) on July 4, 2013, in Ottawa, Ontario.

American statutory interpretation guru William Eskridge once referred to statutory interpretration as “the Cinderella of legal scholarship. Once scorned and neglected, confined to the kitchen, it now dances in the ballroom.”1 Cited in a 1999 article by Stephen Ross, an American law professor who encourages Canadian legal scholars to devote more time to teaching statutory interpretation,2 this quote perfectly captures the explosion of statutory interpretation scholarship that Ross sees happening in Canada. A fascinating area of legal research – which includes legislative intent – statutory interpretation also has a very important and practical use in courts. When the outcome of a case hinges on the meaning of a few words in a statute, interpreting the meaning of those few words will affect someone’s life and rights, one way or another.

What is legislative intent research?

Our interest in legislative intent stems from our experience in law and legislative libraries. In our law and legislative libraries finding the intent behind a statute it is a source of many substantial research questions. Let’s look at an example of a question often posed to legislative researchers:

Question: I would like you to search Hansard, policy papers, and committee Hansard for all discussion surrounding the Act X dating all the way back in time when the predecessor of this legislation was introduced which I believe was prior to 1900. We are interested in determining the meaning of “Y” and if it includes “A and B.”

The kinds of questions that law librarians get that require researching legislative intent include: Can I have the Hansard and committee debate on this bill and the predecessor bills? What did the legislature mean by this phrase? Why and when was this section added to the statute?

These questions can be time consuming and finding the answers can be like finding a needle in a haystack. Discovering the intent of a legislature involves piecing together how the legislation evolved over time, if and how the enactment changed, and what legislators said about this change in Hansard and committee. It can also involve material that inspired the legislation such as reports from law commissions, government policy papers, or Commissions of Inquiry.

Researching legislative intent can feel like Cinderella, pre-ball – all work, confined to the stacks in the library. Paul Michel, writing about statutory interpretation in the McGill Law Journal in 1996, agrees; he said that “the process of statutory interpretation is the unsung workhorse of the law. All but ignored by the law schools, lacking the high profile of constitutional interpretation, the interpretation of statutes is, nevertheless, the most common task of the courts and administrative tribunals. Common, yes; but essential, too.”3

Parliamentary, law firm and academic law libraries all get these questions and provide the materials to help with this research. In parliamentary libraries, librarians have to be careful to find out if the question is part of a legal matter before court. In these cases we cannot assist with it, so it is often a delicate dance deciding what information we can provide. Still, even in that context we may be able to point clients in the right direction by providing bill reading dates and Hansard materials without any analysis of a particular phrase.

There are many terms used to describe this type of research and it helps to define some terms we use in researching legislative intent. Librarians, judges and lawyers all use the term legislative history, but they use it to mean different things. People also use the term “backtracking” to describe the research process. Relying on the definitions that Ruth Sullivan uses in her book, The Construction of Statutes, legislative evolution

consists of successive enacted versions from inception to current formulation or to its displacement or repeal.4

Legislative History

includes everything that relates to [a statute’s] conception, preparation and passage… from the earliest proposals to royal assent. This includes reports of law reform commissions, …; departmental and committee studies and recommendations; proposals and memoranda submitted to Cabinet; the remarks of the minister responsible for the bill; materials tabled or otherwise brought to the attention of the legislature during the legislative process including explanatory notes; materials published by the government during the legislative process, such as explanatory papers or press releases; legislative committee hearings and reports; debates…; the records of motions to amend the bill; regulatory impact analysis statements; and more.5

Put simply, legislative evolution is the statute and its changes. Legislative history is everything surrounding those changes. Both evolution and history are used by lawyers and judges to determine the intent of Parliament.

It is from these questions, that we began to see a research opportunity here. We felt that these types of questions, looking for the intent of parliament, were being posed more frequently in law and legislative libraries. We also wanted to peek on the other side of these questions to see why and how legislative history materials are used in the courts. Though not trained lawyers, we would like to share some of what we have learned so far. By looking deeper into these questions we help our clients become better at answering them and, in turn, we get better ourselves. Like Cinderella we are excited to “go to the ball,” as it were, and bring to light the details, processes and places for researching legislative intent to aid legal researchers.

Why researching legislative intent is important

READ MORE here- http://www.revparl.ca/english/issue.asp?param=223&art=1642

Canadian Parliamentary Review Cover

Vol 38 no 2

Conducting Business and Industry Research

CALL / ACBD Webinar

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

1:00pm - 2:30 EST


This webinar provides an introduction to conducting research on business and industry information. The session will provide tips and tricks for:

  • Defining business and market research
  • Sourcing company lists and finding information on specific businesses
  • Finding and using industry level information, including statistics, financial data, market trends and more

The session explores both free and fee-based sources within Canada


Heidi Schiller is the Manager of InfoAction, Vancouver Public Library’s fee-based research service. Originally from the U.S., Heidi worked as a business reporter at the Bellingham Business Journal before getting her Masters in Library and Information Studies at the University of British Columbia. 

Webinar Costs:

CALL/ACBD Member: $40 + $5.20 HST    = $45.20/webinar

Non-member: $60 + $7.80 HST    = $67.80/webinar

Student Rate: $25 + $3.25 HST    = $28.25/webinar

Click here to register

Lexbox Lunch & Learn: Legal Research Workspace

Pierre-Paul Lemyre at Lexum is pleased to host a lunch & learn for VALL members to talk to us about Lexbox.

Lexbox is an online workspace for legal researchers that makes it very easy to create personalized databases of online legal information and keep track of them over time. Lexbox provides advanced legal research features such as saving frequent queries for reuse, updates and/or citation alerts, and collaborative features.  Lexbox supports a variety of legal information systems including CanLII, BC Laws and many courts and tribunals websites.

Pierre-Paul Lemyre is a lawyer with over 15 years of experience in the legal technology sector. He is one of the founding partners of Lexum Inc., which is the primary provider of online legal information in Canada. As Director of Business Development, Pierre-Paul oversees all commercial activities of Lexum and is largely responsible for providing the strategic vision in this regard.

Date: Wednesday, October 7, 2015

SLA WCC workshop: Conflict Management

The Special Libraries Association Western Canada Chapter is hosting a full day interactive workshop on collaborative conflict management for information professionals. Many librarians have experienced workplace conflict at some point during their career – perhaps with co-workers, clients, management, or the general public.  Kerry Palmer, (Justice Institute of BC), will provide participants with a strong foundation in conflict management techniques including assertive communication skills and how to set respectful limits on aggressive behaviour. 

This workshop is designed for librarians in all sectors: academic, special, and public. Breakfast and lunch are included which gives participants the opportunity to network with fellow information professionals in beautiful downtown Vancouver at the Teck Resources Building.  SLA is pleased to extend member pricing to those belonging to other "information associations”, such as BCLA, CLA and VALL

About our Speaker:

Systems Assistant - Legislative Library of BC

Systems Assistant - Legislative Library of BC

Systems Assistant
Competition: LA1512
Branch: Legislative Library
Position Type: Regular Full-Time
Close Date: September 25, 2015
Salary Range: $44,872.95 - $51,330.87
Position Description

Position Summary

The British Columbia Legislative Library invites applications for the regular full-time position of Systems Assistant.

Reporting to the Manager of Technical Services and Systems, the Systems Assistant maintains and develops web services and databases for the Legislative Library and provides support and maintenance for specialized Library software and systems.

Systems Librarian- Legislative Library of B.C.

Systems Librarian - Legislative Library of BC

Systems Librarian
Competition: LA1511
Branch: Legislative Library
Position Type: Regular Full-Time
Close Date: September 25, 2015
Salary Range: $55,519.34 - $63,769.64
Position Description

Position Summary

The British Columbia Legislative Library invites applications for the regular full-time position of Systems Librarian.

Reporting to the Manager of Technical Services and Systems, the Systems Librarian maintains the Library’s integrated library system, maintains and improves the systems used to manage the Library’s digital collections, maintains other Library systems and provides reference services.

The Legislative Assembly offers competitive benefits and salary packages, and a professional workplace situated in the historic Parliament Buildings. For more information about our organization, go to www.leg.bc.ca.


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