The Canadian Radiocommunications Information and Notification Service (CRINS) is a para-municipal organization dedicated to providing the Canadian public with information and an opportunity to participate in the dialogue surrounding the building of radiocommunication sites and antenna tower systems in Canada.
On July 15, 2014 Innovation, Science, and Economic Development Canada (ISEDC), which has exclusive federal jurisdiction over the construction of radiocommunication installations and antenna systems in Canada, released the latest revision to Client Procedure Circular “CPC 2-0-03 Radiocommunications and Broadcast Antenna Systems, Issue 5” (more commonly known as “CPC 2-0-03”) to update the manner in which operators (proponents) were expected to consult with the public prior to the construction of new radiocommunications sites. This policy document was developed from the recommendations of the multi-year National Antenna Tower Policy Review completed in December 2004 under the guidance of David A. Townsend, Faculty of Law at the University of New Brunswick ("the Townsend Report”).
While Innovation, Science, and Economic Development Canada (ISEDC) is the final arbiter in matters pertaining to antenna systems in Canada, the department seeks constructive input from stakeholders through a flexible consultation process; these include Land Use Authorities (LUAs) - which consist of municipalities, and the relevant provincial department or federal agency in the case of Crown Lands, the public and proponents of radiocommunications sites.
While CPC 2-0-03 provides a set of guidelines for consultation, it does not control the process directly - leaving it to the individual LUAs to establish with Proponents the manner in which public consultation is achieved while insuring minimal standards are met.
Since 2008, LUAs have developed a variety of consultation protocols with varying degrees of success. However, these individual approaches have made compliance with CPC 2-0-03 complicated and costly due to the many process nuances and differing information demands between the various LUAs. These approaches, while consistent in the wider context of CPC 2-0-03, do not always provide for the spirit of CPC 2-0-03 (2014) to be realized causing unnecessary confrontation between stakeholders over the necessity and compliance with various elements of the consultation process.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, the general public is not being given the same opportunities for information and to provide comments on proposals consistently across Canada thereby compromising their voice in the local, regional and national dialogue.
The Canadian Radiocommunications Information and Notification Service (CRINS) promotes dialogue by providing a central repository for information regarding new proposed radiocommunications installations and antenna tower systems. This consistent approach to collecting and disseminating information recognizes the rights of the general public to be fully informed of the decision making process in a transparent, concise and collaborative manner independent of the jurisdiction they are in.
Additionally, by implementing a unified consultation process, proponents and LUAs can effectively review proposed installations in an efficient manner - saving both time and cost while assuring the public interest is being protected.