7-Day Extension Update
When the OSMV (Part of the Ministry of Solicitor General) stopped rendering decisions on all letters requesting an extension of the 7-day review period to file for an IRP review, we filed a Petition to get a mandamus order from Court forcing them to start rendering decisions. When the Attorney General’s office contacted us to discuss the matter, we learned that the OSMV on their own initiative simply stopped rendering these decisions, denying all of the applicants their right to have their matter considered. As far as the Attorney General’s office was concerned, the OSMV needed to get back to the job. So the Attorney General’s office gave the OSMV those instructions.
We often wonder how this type of information is communicated between ministries. We also wonder if anyone in the OSMV cares about the fact that people have a right to have their matter considered or whether it is simply an issue of how they can prevent people from challenging their 90-day IRP.
In any event, the OSMV apparently ignored those instructions for as long as they could. Then we started filing numerous Petitions. We started to file for every client who had requested an extension of the 7-day period to file to dispute their Immediate Roadside Prohibition. The Attorney General’s office called back to say that we were not permitted to put a number of our clients together in one action. We said we do not care — the OSMV is not doing their job so lawyers for the Attorney General can come to Court and explain it and make their argument about us lumping our clients together on one Petition.
Then the OSMV started folding their tent.
Late last week we started receiving decisions and we received reports from other lawyers telling us that suddenly they were now getting their decisions also. So now we can file Petitions to suspend the interlock and Responsible Drivers Program for our client’s who missed the 7-day period to file for an appeal of their IRP for blowing Fail.
A disturbing thing in our view: the Attorney General and the Solicitor General are at this time the same person. And now the Government has announced that they are merging the two ministries.
We have set election dates in British Columbia so we will have a new Government in May 2013. Right now it looks like the NDP will form the next Government.
It seems to us that our current Premier and the Solicitor/Attorney General do not understand the role of the two ministries and the reasons that they need to be separate.
We hope that the next Premier will select more appropriate candidates to operate what should be two separate ministries. With only two years of college and no legal education, the current minister does not have the educational prerequisites to apply for the jobs at the Attorney General’s ministry. The best she can claim to assert her qualifications is that she is an outsider and will therefore have a fresh perspective.
This is an argument that will not go very far if you are applying to be the head of a surgical team, i.e. “I have no skill as a surgeon and I have no history of working in an operating room, but I have fresh ideas so let me decide about how we will conduct this operation.”
In our view, the Attorney General lacks the formal education which should be a prerequisite to hold the position.