The essential features of these regulations were : The limitation of the area of the berth to 50 square miles; a yearly ground rent of five dollars per square mile, and a royalty of five per cent on the sale of all products; the requiring of the construction of a mill of 10,000 feet daily capacity, to run at least six months in the year; provision for renewal of license for another year if the area was not needed for settlement; and provision for inviting bonus tenders in the case of conflicting applications. Thus the public auction system was early foreshadowed, and two years later the Department discontinued granting timber berths except by public competition.
The above regulations governed the disposal of timber on Dominion lands, not only in Manitoba and the Northwest Territories, but also in the railway belt of British Columbia, as far west as the 120th meridian (about 25 miles east of Kamloops). This point was chosen as being the district west of which all timber cut was likely to find its way to the Pacific for export, rather than eastward. West of the 120th meridian, the regulations were framed to harmonize very largely with the British Columbia provincial timber laws, which were drawn up with a view to meeting the exigencies of the export trade to South America. There were two sets of these.*
On Dominion lands west of 120° and north of latitude 49° 34' (Yale), the license carried no restrictions as regards area or time limit; $50 yearly rental ; royalty 30 cents per tree felled and 75 cents per thousand board feet (neglecting small timber for skids, rafting timber, etc.) ; no logs to be sawn until scaled by Crown timber agent by Scribner log rule and dues paid; and trespass was punishable by a fine of $3 per tree.
For lands west of 121° and south of 49° 34' (Yale to Vancouver) the regulations differed in that the area was limited to 1,000 acres;j' rental $10; royalty 15 cents per tree and 20 cents per thousand board feet; and trespass dues $1 per tree. The license form, in the case of both regions, " reserved for Her Majesty for all time any and all exceptionally large trees on the tract," and stated specifically that the regulations " shall not apply to the cutting of trees known as hemlock."
Thus, at this period there were three sets of regulations governing the granting of yearly licenses; one set applying to Manitoba, the Northwest Territories, and the railway belt as far west almost as Kamloops, another to the railway belt from this point to Yale, and a third set from Yale to the coast.
*See regulations dated April 20 and July 16, 1885.
*Owing to the owners increasing the capacity of their mills this was amended on November 2, 1886, to increase the area up to 2,000 acres for each 25,000 feet B M. of daily mill capacity, and a time limit of four years set.