Unlocking the Economic Value of Reserve Lands through Land Management

Sponsor Organization: Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC)


Leasing is the primary tool available to First Nations to unlock the economic value contained in reserve land. Leasing arrangements can be achieved in a few different ways. A First Nation can rely on INAC staff to negotiate and draft the lease terms for reserve lands that are specifically designated for leasing purposes. Through the Reserve Land Environmental Management Program (RLEMP), a trained Lands Manager working for the First Nation prepares the Lease documents for INAC to review and approve. Finally, some leases are negotiated directly between the First Nation and a Lessee through the First Nation Land Management Act (FNLM). This session will provide a basic understanding of how these three leasing regimes work and what the benefits and challenges for each may be.

What Participants will Learn

  • Tools for First Nations to manage reserve land
  • The roles and responsibilities of an RLEMP Band
  • The value of land use planning
  • Lessons learned in transitioning from RLEMP to FNLM


Patrick Crowther
Special Initiatives Officer, Lands Modernization, INAC
First Nation Representative
(to be determined)

Presenter Biographies

Patrick Crowther, prior to joining INAC, Patrick worked as a lawyer in private practice as a civil litigator. Since joining INAC in 2007, Patrick worked as a Lands Management & Leasing Officer for approximately eight years and has been involved with many leasing projects including the recently opened Okanagan Correctional Centre in Oliver, BC. In May of 2016, Patrick transferred to the Lands Modernization team and is now working with First Nations that are interested in operating under the First Nation Land Management Act.