Mi'kmaq and golf

Don MacKenzie says the Mi'kmaq Confederacy of P.E.I. will seek compensation if the province sells the Links at Crowbush Cove golf course (CBC)

The Mi'kmaq Confederacy of P.E.I. says it will expect compensation if the province sells the Links at Crowbush Cove golf course.

The provincially-owned course has been for sale for years, and earlier this month Tourism Minister Rob Henderson said the province was close to a deal.

Under federal law, treaty rights create a duty to consult with First Nations when there is a change in Crown land.

"If you look at Prince Edward Island as a whole, all of it is Mi'kmaq territory but there are certainly pockets that within the province where there is a larger amount of Mi'kmaq traditional activity such as hunting, fishing, gathering," Don MacKenzie, senior legal advisor for the Confederacy, told CBC News Friday.

Brudenell golf course

The province says a deal for the Links at Crowbush Cove golf course is imminent (CBC)

"Certainly in and around the Savage Harbour area, including Crowbush, that is one of those locations."

In another example, MacKenzie said compensation wasn't required with the Trans-Canada Highway project at Bonshaw because there has never been significant Mi'kmaq activity in that area of the province.

Mackenzie said possible compensation could be other land in lieu, a cash payment, or job opportunities. He says those negotiations would take place with the province before the sale is finalized.

The province has written the Confederacy confirming if a deal is expected to be reached it will consult first.

Once the land is turned over into private hands, the duty to consult ends.