Fine Option Program

Link to law: https://www.novascotia.ca/just/regulations/regs/apfineop.htm

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Fine Option Program
made under Section 3 of the
Alternative Penalty Act
S.N.S. 1989, c. 2
and under Section 736 of the
Criminal Code
R.S.C. 1985, c. C-46
O.I.C. 2000-290 (June 1, 2000), N.S. Reg. 102/2000
Definitions
1 For the purposes of the Program,
(a) "Community Corrections Office" means the office administered by Correctional Services that is responsible for matters pertaining to the supervision of offenders in the community;
(b) "Correctional Services" means the Correctional Services Division of the Department of Justice;
(c) "employed" means engaged in regularly scheduled weekly activity in exchange for financial compensation or as a student registered in an accredited education program on a full time basis;
(d) "fine" means a monetary penalty imposed by a judge of the Provincial Court on an offender in respect of an offence;
(e) "Fine Option Program" means the Fine Option Program established pursuant to Section 2;
(f) "fine option work" means an activity that
(i) is normally performed by volunteers without financial compensation,
(ii) does not affect employment opportunities in the community, and
(iii) benefits a not-for-profit organization, Crown Corporation, department or other agency of the Government of Canada or the Province, municipality or Indian band within the meaning of the Indian Act (Canada),but does not include participation by the offender in a treatment or counselling program;
(g) "offence" means an offence under any
(i) federal enactment except the Young Offenders Act (Canada) and any offence relating to the operation or parking of a motor vehicle, or
(ii) Provincial enactment except the Young Persons Summary Proceedings Act, any municipal by-law, and any offence relating to the operation or parking of a motor vehicle under the Motor Vehicle Act;
(h) "offender" means an adult person other than a company, corporation, society or association convicted and fined in respect of an offence;
(i) "outstanding balance of a fine" means the balance of a fine owing after payment of the court costs and victim surcharge portion of the fine by the offender;
(j) "Program" means the Fine Option Program;
(k) "work placement" means a not-for-profit organization, municipality, Council of a band within the meaning of the Indian Act (Canada), Crown Corporation, or department or agency of the Government of Canada or the Province that provides supervised fine option work;
(l) "Work Resource Centre" means an organization or agency contracted by the Province to develop and maintain a supply of work placements adequate for the purposes of the Fine Option Program;
(m) "Work Resource Centre Supervisor" means a person employed by a Work Resource Centre to
(i) match offenders with work placements, and
(ii) monitor offenders’ compliance with the requirements of the Fine Option Program.

Operating principles of Program
2 A Fine Option Program is hereby established for the purposes of permitting an offender to discharge the outstanding balance of a fine by earning credits for fine option work performed in accordance with the requirements of the Program.
3 All fine option work shall be performed at work placements approved by Correctional Services.
4 Despite the tools, equipment and skills used to perform fine option work, all fine option work shall be of equal value.
5 All fine option work that is performed to discharge the outstanding balance of a fine shall be performed during a period not exceeding 2 years and commencing on the date the offender contacts the Community Corrections Office in accordance with subsection 10(1).
6 An offender shall pay the victim surcharge and court costs portion of the fine in full prior to registration with the Fine Option Program.
7 (1) The number of hours of fine option work required to discharge the outstanding balance of a fine shall be determined by dividing the amount of the outstanding balance of the fine by the hourly Provincial minimum wage.
(2) An amount equivalent to the hourly Provincial minimum wage shall be credited to the outstanding balance of an offender’s fine for each hour of fine option work performed by the offender.
8 All requirements of the Fine Option Program shall be complied with and satisfactorily completed by the offender.
9 Where a judge of the Provincial Court imposes a fine on an offender in respect of an offence, the judge shall
(a) advise the offender of the payment due date for the fine and the Fine Option Program; and
(b) instruct the Clerk of the Court to
(i) issue a Fine Order indicating the total amount of the fine, the amount of the victim surcharge, the amount of the court costs and the payment due date, and
(ii) provide the offender with information outlining the Program.

Registration with Program
10 (1) An offender shall register with the Fine Option Program by contacting the Community Corrections Office prior to the date the fine becomes past due and providing all information required by the Community Corrections Office for registration with the Program.
(2) An offender shall meet with a representative of the Community Corrections Office prior to being assigned a work placement and, by signing a completed fine option registration, shall agree to
(a) personally perform the fine option work at the work placement identified and assigned to the offender by the Work Resource Centre Supervisor;
(b) ensure that the quality of the performance of the fine option work, punctuality and attendance at the identified work placement assigned to the offender are equivalent to the standard expected of a paid employee;
(c) be responsible for the offender’s meals, accommodation and transportation during the period of the fine option work at the work placement assigned to the offender;
(d) obey all lawful instructions of the Work Resource Centre Supervisor and the work placement while enrolled in the Program;
(e) while unemployed, be available to perform fine option work at least 35 hours per week; and
(f) while otherwise employed, be available to perform fine option work at least 10 hours per week unless otherwise approved by the Community Corrections Office.
(3) A representative of the Community Corrections Office shall advise an offender at the meeting referred to in subsection (2) that any misconduct, disregard for the work placement or other form of non-compliance by the offender with the requirements of the Fine Option Program shall result in removal from the Program.
(4) The Community Corrections Office shall immediately notify the Clerk of the Court in writing of an offender’s registration with the Fine Option Program.
11 An offender shall register with the Fine Option Program only once for each offence.

Placement and supervision
12 (1) A Work Resource Centre Supervisor shall determine the placement of an offender at a specific work placement and contact the offender to arrange an initial appointment for the offender with the Work Resource Centre Supervisor and work placement.
(2) During the initial appointment arranged pursuant to subsection (1), the Work Resource Centre Supervisor shall
(a) review the rules and regulations of the Work Resource Centre and the work placement with the offender;
(b) determine the type and hours of fine option work to be performed and the method of recording credits for the performance of the work; and
(c) establish a work schedule for the offender.
(3) The Work Resource Centre Supervisor shall maintain, at a minimum, weekly contact with the work placement and the offender to ensure compliance with the requirements of the Fine Option Program.
(4) The Community Corrections Office shall maintain, at a minimum, weekly contact with the Work Resource Centre Supervisor and monthly contact with the offender to ensure the offender’s compliance with the requirements of the Fine Option Program.

Non-compliance with Program
13 Where an offender fails to report for the initial appointment with the work placement and subsequently fails to contact the Community Corrections Office within 3 working days following the initial appointment, the Community Corrections Office may terminate the offender’s participation in the Fine Option Program.
14 (1) Where an offender fails to comply with the requirements of the Fine Option Program, the work placement may refuse the offender entry to the work placement.
(2) Where an offender is refused entry to the work placement pursuant to subsection (1), the work placement shall immediately notify the Work Resource Centre Supervisor of the refusal.
(3) Where a Work Resource Centre Supervisor has been notified of a refusal of entry to a work placement pursuant to subsection (2), the Work Resource Centre Supervisor shall immediately notify the Community Corrections Office of the refusal.
15 (1) Where an offender is refused entry to a work placement pursuant to subsection 14(1), the Community Corrections Office may, where it considers it appropriate, investigate alternate work placements.
(2) Where the Community Corrections Office determines that it is not appropriate to assign an offender to an alternative work placement, the Community Corrections Office shall terminate the offender’s involvement in the Fine Option Program and immediately notify the Clerk of the Court of the termination and provide supporting documentation, including a statement indicating the amount of the fine discharged through participation in the Program and the amount of the fine remaining outstanding.
16 (1) Where an offender does not complete the requirements of the Fine Option Program, the Work Resource Centre Supervisor shall immediately provide the Community Corrections Office with a written recommendation that the offender be removed from the Program for non-compliance with the requirements of the Program and a Work Performance Sheet indicating the number of hours of fine option work completed.
(2) Where the Community Corrections Office receives a written recommendation pursuant to subsection (1), the Community Corrections Office shall terminate the offender’s involvement in the Fine Option Program and immediately notify the Clerk of the Court of the termination and provide supporting documentation including a statement indicating the amount of the fine discharged through participation in the Fine Option Program and the amount of the fine remaining outstanding.

Completion of Program
17 (1) Where an offender completes the requirements of the Fine Option Program, the Work Resource Centre Supervisor shall advise the Community Corrections Office that the offender has completed the fine option work required to discharge the outstanding balance of the offender’s fine, and complete and forward a Work Performance Sheet indicating the number of hours of fine option work completed to the Community Corrections Office.
(2) Where a Community Corrections Office receives a Work Performance Sheet pursuant to subsection (1), the Community Corrections Office shall advise the Clerk of the Court of the offender’s completion of all requirements of the Fine Option Program and verify the amount of the outstanding balance of the fine discharged through participation in the Fine Option Program.