National Research Council Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. N-15)
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Act current to 2023-05-17 and last amended on 2021-06-29. Previous Versions
National Research Council Act
R.S.C., 1985, c. N-15
An Act respecting the National Research Council of Canada
Marginal note:Short title
1 This Act may be cited as the National Research Council Act.
- R.S., c. N-14, s. 1
2 In this Act,
Chairperson means the Chairperson of the Council appointed under subsection 3(1); (premier conseiller)
company[Repealed, 1999, c. 31, s. 168]
Council means the Council established by subsection 3(1); (Conseil)
Minister means such member of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada as may be designated by the Governor in Council as the Minister for the purposes of this Act; (ministre)
President means the President of the Council appointed under subsection 3(1). (président)
- R.S., 1985, c. N-15, s. 2
- 1999, c. 31, s. 168
- 2013, c. 40, s. 271
Establishment of Council
Marginal note:Council established
3 (1) There is established a Council, to be called the National Research Council of Canada, consisting of a President, a Chairperson and not more than 10 other members, to be appointed by the Governor in Council.
Marginal note:Council incorporated
(2) The Council is a corporation that has power to acquire, hold, sell or otherwise dispose of and loan or lease real, personal, movable and immovable property for the purposes of and subject to this Act.
Marginal note:Incorporation and acquisition of shares
(3) The Council, as well as a corporation described in subsection (4), may do anything in respect of which paragraph 90(1)(a) or (b) of the Financial Administration Act applies only with the approval of the Governor in Council and in accordance with any conditions that the Governor in Council may impose.
(4) Subsection (3) applies with respect to a corporation if any of its shares, within the meaning of Part X of the Financial Administration Act, are held by the Council and either
(a) a majority of the corporation’s directors or members are nominated or appointed by or on behalf of Her Majesty in right of Canada or by directors or members who were nominated or appointed by or on behalf of Her Majesty; or
(b) Her Majesty otherwise controls the corporation.
- R.S., 1985, c. N-15, s. 3
- 2001, c. 4, s. 108
- 2010, c. 12, s. 1757
- 2013, c. 40, s. 272
- 2018, c. 27, s. 278
- 2021, c. 23, s. 260
Duties and Powers
Marginal note:Duties of Council
4 The Council has charge of such matters affecting scientific and industrial research in Canada as may be assigned to it by the Governor in Council.
- R.S., c. N-14, s. 7
- 1976-77, c. 24, s. 55
Marginal note:Powers of Council
5 (1) Without limiting the general powers conferred on or vested in the Council by this Act, the Council may
(a) subject to the approval of the Governor in Council, make by-laws for the conduct of its business;
(b) control and direct the work of the Council through the President;
(c) undertake, assist or promote scientific and industrial research, including, without restricting the generality of the foregoing,
(i) the utilization of the natural resources of Canada,
(ii) researches with the object of improving the technical processes and methods used in the industries of Canada, and of discovering processes and methods that may promote the expansion of existing or the development of new industries,
(iii) researches with the view of utilizing the waste products of those industries,
(iv) the investigation and determination of standards and methods of measurements, including length, volume, weight, mass, capacity, time, heat, light, electricity, magnetism and other forms of energy, and the investigation and determination of physical constants and the fundamental properties of matter,
(v) the standardization and certification of the scientific and technical apparatus and instruments for the Government service and for use in the industries of Canada, and the determination of the standards of quality of the materials used in construction of public works and of the supplies used in the various branches of the Government service,
(vi) the investigation and standardization, at the request of any of the industries of Canada, of the materials used or usable in, or the products of, the industries making the request, and
(vii) researches, the object of which is to improve conditions in agriculture;
(d) have charge of and direction or supervision over the researches that may be undertaken, under conditions to be determined in each case, by or for single industrial firms or by such organizations or persons as may desire to avail themselves of the facilities offered for this purpose;
(e) expend, for the purposes of this Act, any money appropriated by Parliament for the work of the Council or received by the Council through the conduct of its operations;
(f) acquire any money, securities or other property by gift, bequest or otherwise, and expend, administer or dispose of any of the money, securities or other property subject to the terms, if any, on which the money, securities or other property is given, bequeathed or otherwise made available to the Council;
(g) appoint such scientific, technical and other officers as are nominated by the President, fix the tenure of their appointments, prescribe their several duties and, subject to the approval of the Governor in Council, fix their remuneration;
(h) authorize the President or any other officer of the Council to appoint persons to perform duties of a temporary nature for a period not exceeding six months;
(i) establish, operate and maintain a national science library;
(j) subject to the approval of the Minister, publish and sell or otherwise distribute such scientific and technical information as the Council deems necessary;
(k) carry on work and manufacturing of an experimental and developmental nature with respect to the matters referred to in paragraphs (c) and (d) so as to render the processes, methods or products relating to those matters more available and effective in useful arts and manufacturing and for scientific purposes and otherwise;
(l) license, sell or otherwise grant or make available to others, and receive royalties, fees and payment for, any intellectual property right — including any patent, copyright, industrial design, trademark, trade secret, know-how or other similar right and any such future right that is described under a written agreement — that is held, developed, administered or controlled by the Council, whether vested in Her Majesty in right of Canada or in the Council; and
(m) operate and administer any astronomical observatories established or maintained by the Government of Canada.
Marginal note:Delegation to President
(2) The Minister may authorize the President to approve on the Minister’s behalf the publication, sale or other distribution by the Council of scientific and technical information.
Marginal note:Public Servants Inventions Act
(3) Despite section 9 of the Public Servants Inventions Act, the administration and control of any invention made by a public servant, as defined in section 2 of that Act, who is employed by the Council, and vested in Her Majesty by that Act, and any patent issued with respect to the invention, are vested in the Council.
- R.S., 1985, c. N-15, s. 5
- 2001, c. 4, s. 109(F)
- 2004, c. 25, s. 165(F)
- 2014, c. 20, s. 366(E)
- 2018, c. 27, s. 279
Marginal note:Drugs and devices — public health
5.1 (1) The Council may engage in, and may direct or supervise, the production on any scale of drugs and devices, as those terms are defined in section 2 of the Food and Drugs Act, for the purpose of protecting or improving public health in Canada or elsewhere.
Marginal note:Approval or direction of Minister
(2) However, the Council may do anything referred to in subsection (1) that is not otherwise authorized under paragraph 5(1)(k) only with the approval, or under the direction, of the Minister given after the Minister has consulted with the Minister of Health.
Marginal note:Tenure of office
6 Each member of the Council, other than the President, shall be appointed to hold office for a term of not more than three years.
- R.S., c. N-14, s. 5
- 1976-77, c. 24, s. 52
Marginal note:Appointment of President
7 The President shall be appointed to hold office for such term, not exceeding five years, as the Governor in Council may determine.
- R.S., c. N-14, s. 6
- 1976-77, c. 24, s. 53
Marginal note:Executive capacity of President
8 The President is the chief executive officer of the Council and has supervision over and direction of the work of the Council and of the officers, technical and otherwise, appointed for the purpose of carrying on the work of the Council.
- R.S., c. N-14, s. 6
- 1976-77, c. 24, s. 53
Marginal note:Acting President
9 (1) If the President is absent or unable to act or if the office of President is vacant, the Minister may appoint another person to act as President, but that person may act as President for a period of more than 90 days only with the approval of the Governor in Council.
Marginal note:Acting Chairperson
(2) If the Chairperson is absent or unable to act or if the office of Chairperson is vacant, the Minister may appoint another person to act as Chairperson, but that person may act as Chairperson for a period of more than 90 days only with the approval of the Governor in Council.
- R.S., 1985, c. N-15, s. 9
- 2013, c. 40, s. 273
10 Any retiring President or other retiring member of the Council is eligible for re-appointment.
- R.S., c. N-14, ss. 5, 6
- 1976-77, c. 24, s. 53
Marginal note:Salary and expenses of President
11 (1) The President shall be paid such salary and expenses as are fixed by the Governor in Council.
(2) [Repealed, 2013, c. 40, s. 274]
Marginal note:Travel and other expenses
(3) The members of the Council, other than the President, shall serve without remuneration but each of those members is entitled to be paid reasonable travel and other expenses incurred while absent from his ordinary place of residence in the course of performing duties under this Act.
Marginal note:Remuneration for additional duties
(4) Notwithstanding subsection (3), a member of the Council, other than the President, shall, for any period during which the member performs with the approval of the Council any duties on its behalf in addition to his ordinary duties, be paid such remuneration therefor as may be authorized by the Council.
- R.S., 1985, c. N-15, s. 11
- 2013, c. 40, s. 274
Marginal note:Head office
12 The head office of the Council shall be at such place in Canada as may be designated by the Governor in Council.
- R.S., c. N-14, s. 10
- 1976-77, c. 24, s. 56
13 The Council shall meet at least three times a year at the times and places in Canada that the Chairperson may determine. The Chairperson presides at those meetings.
- R.S., 1985, c. N-15, s. 13
- 2013, c. 40, s. 275
Marginal note:Executive committee
14 (1) There is hereby established an executive committee of the Council consisting of the President and at least six other members to be selected by the Council.
Marginal note:Powers of executive committee
(2) The executive committee of the Council may exercise the powers of the Council and shall submit, at each meeting of the Council, minutes of the proceedings of that committee since the last preceding meeting of the Council.
- R.S., c. N-14, ss. 5, 11
- 1976-77, c. 24, ss. 52, 57(F)
Marginal note:Agent of Her Majesty
15 (1) The Council is for all purposes of this Act an agent of Her Majesty and it may exercise its powers under this Act only as an agent of Her Majesty.
Marginal note:Proceedings by and against the Council
(2) Actions, suits or other legal proceedings in respect of any right or obligation acquired or incurred by the Council on behalf of Her Majesty, whether in its name or in the name of Her Majesty, may be brought or taken by or against the Council in the name of the Council in any court that would have jurisdiction if the Council were not an agent of Her Majesty.
- R.S., c. N-14, s. 9
Marginal note:Audit relating to Council
16 All the receipts and expenditures of the Council are subject to examination and audit by the Auditor General of Canada.
- R.S., c. N-14, s. 15
- 1976-77, c. 34, s. 30(F)
Marginal note:Annual report to Parliament
17 The President shall, within four months after the termination of each fiscal year, transmit to the Minister a report of the operations of the Council for that fiscal year and the Minister shall cause that report to be laid before Parliament within fifteen days after the receipt thereof or, if Parliament is not then sitting, on any of the first fifteen days next thereafter that either House of Parliament is sitting.
- R.S., c. N-14, s. 16
18 and 19 [Repealed, 1999, c. 31, s. 169]
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