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Mohawk Council of Kahnawá:keTsi nahò:ten kahiatónnion a'arákonEnsaié:nawaseOnhkharéhson Aionkhihsnoé:nen
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Update on Kanawaki Lease negotiations

06/02/2021

The Mohawk Council of Kahnawà:ke (MCK) wishes to provide an update to the community regarding the status of the Kanawaki Land Lease (“the Lease”) renewal.

The MCK has been working diligently to assist Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) in the renegotiation of a new rent amount for the Lease, which will begin in November 2021 and end in 2046.

The MCK cannot provide any specific details about the negotiations as they are subject to a confidentiality agreement other than to say that the parties have been unable to come to a satisfactory agreement. At this point, it appears that the parties will be proceeding to arbitration to resolve the matter and that a reasonable arbitration award is to be expected following the testimony of experts.

ISC and the MCK are seeking to maximize the value of the land for the lot holders. ISC has retained one of the top land appraisers from the Altus Group to assist in the valuation of the land.

The Lease is just another example of the historical imposition of third-party land takings in Kahnawà:ke. The MCK wishes to ensure that there is a real benefit to the community with respect to any lands used and occupied by third parties. The undervaluation of Kahnawà:ke lands for the benefit of third parties will no longer be tolerated by the community.

In 1910, the federal Crown leased approximately 224.4 acres of private and common land to the Kanawaki Golf Club. Since the outset, the leases with Kanawaki have been administered by the Crown on behalf of the lot holders. Therefore, the Crown – represented by ISC – remains responsible to negotiate the Lease on behalf of the lot holders. The MCK is a signatory to the Lease and, more generally, will be representing the community with respect to the common land under the Lease.

Please note that, per the terms of the current Lease, only the lease amount is open for negotiation. Kanawaki is exercising its option to renew for a further 25 years. There will be no further renewal after 2046.

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