Superior Court issues ruling regarding costs to be paid to Saugeen First Nation

In a recent media release, in a ruling issued on May 21st, Justice Vella has ordered that the Town of South Bruce Peninsula, the Province of Ontario, and the Government of Canada collectively pay Saugeen First Nation a total of $3.22 million in costs, disbursements, and HST.

The costs have been apportioned as follows:

  • Canada: $322,000
  • Ontario: $1.28 million
  • The Town: $1.67 million

In addition, Justice Vella has mandated that the Town pay $467,000 of Canada’s costs.

Justice Vella also stated that the ‘costs order’ is made without prejudice to the Town’s right to seek indemnification from Canada for the entire costs award in addition to its damages claim, which will be addressed in Phase 2 when compensation is determined.

The Town intends to appeal the costs award against it. Consequently, the cost award is suspended until the appeal is finally determined.

The Town firmly believes that the costs should be borne by Canada, as it alone was responsible for the identification of the Reserve boundary, the survey, and the Crown patents which granted the Town title to its beach. Notably, Canada admitted at trial that it breached its fiduciary duties.