Evidence of meeting #38 for Public Accounts in the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament’s site, as are the minutes.) The winning word was witnesses.

A recording is available from Parliament.

On the agenda

MPs speaking

Also speaking

3:35 p.m.

Conservative

Bev Shipley Lambton—Kent—Middlesex, ON

Yes.

3:35 p.m.

NDP

The Chair David Christopherson

Okay.

3:35 p.m.

Conservative

Bev Shipley Lambton—Kent—Middlesex, ON

After “study, and that”, it would say, “the first meeting to hear witness testimony be on April 26, 2012”.

Just so we're clear, it's....

3:35 p.m.

NDP

The Chair David Christopherson

Bev, the clerk is going to come over here to make sure we have it clear.

Madam Clerk, I'll ask you to read out the amendment as you understand it.

I will then look to Mr. Shipley for agreement that it is correct, or I'll ask him to make corrections, and then I'll look for agreement from everyone else that they understand.

Madam Clerk.

April 19th, 2012 / 3:35 p.m.

The Clerk of the Committee Ms. Joann Garbig

Perhaps I could read the motion with the amendment incorporated and alert the members as to when the new wording comes in.

The motion of Mr. Saxton would then read as follows:

That, pursuant to Standing Order 108(2), the Standing Committee on Public Accounts begin a study of the Spring 2012 Report of the Auditor General, beginning with Chapter 2 (Replacing Canada’s Fighter Jets), and that the committee hold a planning session at the meeting of April 24, 2012, to determine the witness list and agenda for the study, and that

—here is the new wording—

the first meeting to hear witness testimony be on April 26, 2012,

—and then we resume the wording of the original motion—

and that when the study is completed the committee report its finding to the House of Commons.

3:35 p.m.

NDP

The Chair David Christopherson

All right.

Bev, you're good?

Does everybody understand it? We're not looking for agreement yet. Does the committee understand the amendment?

Very well. The floor is open for debate.

Mr. Shipley, do you wish to speak any further?

3:35 p.m.

Conservative

Bev Shipley Lambton—Kent—Middlesex, ON

I don't.

3:35 p.m.

NDP

The Chair David Christopherson

You're good? All right.

The floor is open.

Mr. Byrne.

3:35 p.m.

Liberal

Gerry Byrne Humber—St. Barbe—Baie Verte, NL

Mr. Chair, I think we should be using this time today. We have lots of time to do the planning session today. We all flew here, or drove here, or took trains to get here today. We have time on our hands today. Why don't we conduct the planning session today?

3:40 p.m.

NDP

The Chair David Christopherson

Thank you.

Are there further speakers?

Mr. Kramp, you want the floor? Go ahead.

3:40 p.m.

Conservative

Daryl Kramp Prince Edward—Hastings, ON

Certainly I don't want to get into a peeing match across the floor here at this stage, but I remind all my colleagues that there have been a number of filibusters and delays on this committee, and this never once came from the government. If we want to get on with things, then let's make some decisions and vote and get to work. That simply means....

Today was not called for a planning session. Today was called for permission to study the issue. This was the motion put forward. Now we've suggested that we need to move forward and we need to get at the planning, get it over with, get it done. This message says do that.

I'm certain Mr. Allen would understand that we can move forward with this. We could have been doing this two weeks ago, but we were delayed with more filibuster. Let's just get to work and pass this motion so that we can have our planning session and call our witnesses in. I'm confident that we can have the number of witnesses necessary to certainly start our planning session and put everything in order.

I will actually agree with Mr. Byrne on a few things. The last thing we need is to have a whole group of witnesses coming in here, eight or nine witnesses at one point, and not be able to dig down and drill down when we should and when we need to. That is why it's very important that we have a very effective planning session with the witnesses that we want there, to put our strategy in place and effectively produce results for this committee.

So let's just go forward with it. Stop all the gamesmanship and get to work today. Let's just vote on this thing, go to our planning session, have our witnesses in, and do what we should be doing. It is that simple. Why we just keep dragging this out and dragging this out....

The frustration level is there for all of us. Surely we can get beyond the gamesmanship here and just get to work.

Thank you.

3:40 p.m.

NDP

The Chair David Christopherson

I just want to point out to members to give some consideration, in the course of their debate, as to what we do with the DND hearing that is scheduled for next Tuesday. I hear it wasn't the intent of the government to cancel it, but rather to defer it.

3:40 p.m.

Conservative

Daryl Kramp Prince Edward—Hastings, ON

Yes, just to defer it.

3:40 p.m.

NDP

The Chair David Christopherson

But at some point—I'm just pointing out some loose ends here—we'll need to know what to do with that.

Again, I am imploring from the chair that if there can be agreement on even one or two witnesses today, it just increases the odds that we'll actually have a productive meeting next Tuesday. Otherwise we're back to the 24-hour notice again. I can't do it unilaterally. All I can do is implore colleagues to consider these things as they take up the debate, which we are now continuing.

Mr. Saxton, you have the floor.

3:40 p.m.

Conservative

Andrew Saxton North Vancouver, BC

Thank you, Mr. Chair.

We all came back here today at Mr. Byrne's insistence in order to deal with the motions before the committee.

The committee voted ten to one to deal with the motion, the one against being Mr. Byrne. The one fellow who brings us back here, at great expense, votes against dealing with the motion that's before the committee. I think that speaks volumes to where he's going with this.

Mr. Chair, I suggest that we now vote on this motion and move forward.