Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development is responding to the Nunavut Planning Commission’s requests for $1.7 million to hold a final hearing on its land use plan, by pointing out that the body has spent more than $54 million in federal funding since 1996.

“The Government of Canada has invested significant funding for the development of the land use plan,” writes spokesperson Michelle Perron in an email to CBC.

On Monday of this week, the Nunavut Planning Commission issued a strongly-worded press release announcing the cancellation of its final public hearing on the plan and blaming the federal government.

Perron’s email says the planning commission only submitted its request for funding five days earlier, on June 11.

“We will give this request due consideration,” she writes.

Nunavut’s land use plan is a requirement under the Nunavut Land Claim Agreement signed in 1993. It is supposed to provide an outline of where Nunavummiut want development to take place, and where traditional land use and the needs of wildlife should take precedence.

If completed, it would be the largest land use plan in the country; other provinces and territories conduct land use planning region by region. 

A draft plan was completed in September 2012. 

The commission has planned to hold a final hearing in Iqaluit in November to complete the plan. 

But those hearings come with a hefty price tag