Evidence of meeting #33 for Finance in the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament’s site, as are the minutes.) The winning word was infrastructure.

A recording is available from Parliament.

On the agenda

MPs speaking

Also speaking

  • Mark McQueen  Board Director, President and Chief Executive Officer of Wellington Financial, Canada's Venture Capital and Private Equity Association
  • John Gamble  President, Association of Consulting Engineering Companies
  • Susie Grynol  Vice-President, Policy and Public Affairs, Association of Consulting Engineering Companies
  • Claude Lajeunesse  President and Chief Executive Officer, Aerospace Industries Association of Canada
  • Robert Simonds  President, Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs
  • Geoff Smith  Director, Governement Relations, Canadian Electricity Association
  • Richard Rémillard  Executive Director, Canada's Venture Capital and Private Equity Association
  • Jayson Myers  President and Chief Executive Officer, National Office, Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters
  • Michel Arnold  Executive Director, Option consommateurs
  • Anu Bose  Head, Ottawa Office, Option consommateurs
  • Vaughan Dowie  Executive Head of Public Affairs, McGill University
  • Mark Cohon  Commissioner, Canadian Football League, 100th Anniversary Grey Cup Festival
  • Chris Rudge  Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, 100th Anniversary Grey Cup Festival
  • Michael Clemons  Representative, 100th Anniversary Grey Cup Festival
  • Barbara Cameron  Associate Professor, York University, Centre for Feminist Research
  • Kathleen Lahey  Faculty of Law, Queens University, Centre for Feminist Research
  • Jean-Michel Laurin  Vice-President, Global Business Policy, Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters
  • Sandra Crocker  Assistant Vice-Principal, Research and International Affairs, McGill University

4:45 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair James Rajotte

You have one minute.

4:45 p.m.

Conservative

Kelly Block Saskatoon—Rosetown—Biggar, SK

One minute? Then my question is for Mr. Gamble or Ms. Grynol. I just want to ask a quick question.

You said that there are great complexities in meeting the deadlines that were set. I want to hear from your industry what the impacts of this stimulus fund were on your industry in terms of all of the projects that perhaps needed to have your services at the front end.

4:45 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair James Rajotte

Thank you.

We'll hear a very brief response.

4:45 p.m.

President, Association of Consulting Engineering Companies

John Gamble

It was certainly helpful to our industry. It was probably more helpful to the downstream industries, such as the construction, the trades, and the operating and maintenance people who operate the facilities.

While there were some complexities with it around the deadline, I would have to say in fairness to the government that on balance it was a successful program, given the scope the government had established for it. We're just hoping we can get you to look longer term at a more sustainable plan.

4:45 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair James Rajotte

Thank you.

We'll go to Mr. Pacetti, please.

October 6th, 2010 / 4:45 p.m.

Liberal

Massimo Pacetti Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel, QC

Thank you, Mr. Chair.

Thank you to the witnesses for appearing.

Mr. Simonds, I'm not sure whether this question was asked. When I chaired this committee, we wrote a report on wanting to give the firemen this $3,000 benefit or deduction, and the contingent issue with the Finance officials was how to calculate the 200 hours of service—would it be when you're in the firehouse playing cards?

I know I've asked this question before, but how do you plan to resolve this issue?

4:45 p.m.

President, Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs

Robert Simonds

Mr. Chair, in anticipation of the interest of this committee and our parliamentarians, I can offer that we have a very robust method by which to monitor and to audit this function. We have our town and village councils and mayors, who have a responsibility with their fire chiefs to ensure that accurate record-keeping is maintained. They are further augmented by the roles and responsibilities of the provincial fire marshals and fire commissioners, who also have the ability to do audits.

4:45 p.m.

Liberal

Massimo Pacetti Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel, QC

So do you have something in mind whereby it will be pre-simplified and able to be verified? You know that you'll be audited more quickly than you'll be able to get a benefit. It could end up costing you more than the actual benefit.

4:45 p.m.

President, Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs

Robert Simonds

An overarching consideration here is the requirement to maintain accurate logs with respect to workers' compensation. Whether you are participating in any of the core functions of the fire service—whether it be emergency response, public education, training, or what have you—it's an overwhelming responsibility of those fire chiefs to maintain these records for workers' compensation. That is one of the pillars of that responsibility, and it would satisfy this interest.

4:45 p.m.

Liberal

Massimo Pacetti Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel, QC

I don't mean to interrupt you, but we have limited time.

Are the logs or the records that you keep or plan to maintain going to be okay with the Finance officials, according to your discussion with Finance?

4:45 p.m.

President, Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs

Robert Simonds

The Finance officials have been very open in our dialogue with them. They recognize the integrity of the fire service across the country and have every confidence that we will adhere to those requirements.

4:45 p.m.

Liberal

Massimo Pacetti Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel, QC

Great. Thanks.

Mr. Lajeunesse, you have mentioned the figure of $12 billion several times today. Does that figure come directly from the amount of, I think, $34 billion, or is it $12 billion in economic spinoffs?

4:45 p.m.

President and Chief Executive Officer, Aerospace Industries Association of Canada

Claude Lajeunesse

The $12 billion represents contracts that could be done here in Canada. We must remember the advantage of the program: Canadians, Canadian companies and their employees and so on will have access to the entire fleet, which is supposed to be 5,000 aircraft. That means that they will eventually have access to $12 billion from a possible total of about $350 billion. That is a share that Canada can easily get. Once again, I repeat that I am convinced of it. That is what our companies tell us.

4:50 p.m.

Liberal

Massimo Pacetti Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel, QC

It is $12 billion out of $305 billion.

4:50 p.m.

President and Chief Executive Officer, Aerospace Industries Association of Canada

Claude Lajeunesse

It is $12 billion out of about $300 billion.