Levels of Government in Canada

Government

Canada has three levels of government:

  • federal
  • provincial or territorial
  • municipal (city)

Federal government

The Prime Minister heads the federal government based in Ottawa. It deals with national and international matters, such as:

  • mail
  • taxes
  • money
  • banking
  • shipping
  • railways
  • pipelines
  • telephones
  • criminal law
  • foreign affairs
  • national defence
  • employment insurance
  • Aboriginal lands and rights

Provincial and territorial governments

A Premier leads each province and territory.

The provincial and territorial governments have the power to change their laws and manage their own public lands. They are in charge of:

  • education
  • health care
  • road regulations

Municipal (City) governments

Mayors lead municipal governments.

Municipal governments run cities, towns or districts (municipalities). They are in charge of things, such as:

  • parks
  • parking
  • libraries
  • roadways
  • local police
  • local land use
  • fire protection
  • public transportation
  • community water systems

First Nations governance

Across the country, band councils govern First Nations communities. Band councils are similar to municipal governments. Band members elect the band council, which makes decisions that affect their local community.