The fact that legislation is written in the present tense does not form a basis for determining the temporal scope of the law: Godbout v. Pagé, 2017 SCC 18 at para. 26. However, the interpretive issue in this case is not the temporal applicability of the law, but rather the ordinary grammatical meaning of words used in a statute when certain words are expressed in different tenses. In these circumstances, I find it is appropriate to look at the different tenses used to discern the meaning of the words, notwithstanding the legislative drafting convention of using the present tense.
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