Evidence of meeting #40 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 thank.

A recording is available from Parliament.

On the agenda

MPs speaking

Also speaking

  • Michael Ferguson  Auditor General of Canada, Office of the Auditor General of Canada
  • John Reed  Principal, Office of the Auditor General of Canada
  • Jerome Berthelette  Assistant Auditor General, Office of the Auditor General of Canada

10:05 a.m.

Auditor General of Canada, Office of the Auditor General of Canada

Michael Ferguson

Thank you.

That was based on the anticipated number of flying hours for each aircraft and the number of hours of expected use annually, which came out to a 36-year life cycle.

10:05 a.m.

NDP

The Chair David Christopherson

Your time has expired, Mr. Alexander.

Thank you, both.

I have now concluded the speakers list in rotation. Colleagues will note that we have a little over 35 minutes left. It has been the practice of the committee on occasion to just continue on rotation to the expiration of the committee, or the committee has the right to adjourn now that we have completed the first cycle. I'm in your hands.

Mr. Saxton.

10:05 a.m.

Conservative

Andrew Saxton North Vancouver, BC

Mr. Chair, it has been the government's intention all along that the Auditor General would be here for the full length of time and that members would have, at this time, an opportunity to ask him questions so that the Canadian public can get the full benefit of this session, so we recommend that we continue as you suggested.

10:05 a.m.

NDP

The Chair David Christopherson

Thank you.

Let me test the floor.

Mr. Byrne.

10:05 a.m.

Liberal

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

It was at the Liberal Party of Canada's insistence that the Auditor General be afforded the opportunity to be here for the full period of time, and we appreciate that he's here now.

10:10 a.m.

NDP

The Chair David Christopherson

It will be interesting to see how Mr. Allen beats that one.

Mr. Allen, your thoughts.

10:10 a.m.

NDP

Malcolm Allen Welland, ON

Let's just move on and let the Auditor General speak.

10:10 a.m.

NDP

The Chair David Christopherson

It is so ordered.

Mr. Saxton, beginning the rotation again, you now have the floor, sir.

10:10 a.m.

Conservative

Andrew Saxton North Vancouver, BC

Thank you very much, Mr. Chair.

I would like to give my time to my colleague, Laurie Hawn, if that's okay with the committee.

10:10 a.m.

NDP

The Chair David Christopherson

I'll apply the same rule as I did last time, and I hear no objection, so Mr. Hawn, you now have the floor, sir.

April 26th, 2012 / 10:10 a.m.

Conservative

Laurie Hawn Edmonton Centre, AB

Thank you, Mr. Chair.

Thank you to our witnesses for being here.

I just wanted to follow up a little bit on Mr. Alexander's question to be extra precise when we talk about acquisition and sustainment.

There is only one finite number in this whole discussion, and that's the $9 billion acquisition. Is that correct?

10:10 a.m.

Auditor General of Canada, Office of the Auditor General of Canada

Michael Ferguson

In terms of that being a $9 billion budget amount for the acquisition, I'm not really sure what the term “finite” means, but my understanding is that there has been $9 billion set aside, approved for the acquisition of replacement fighter jets.

10:10 a.m.

Conservative

Laurie Hawn Edmonton Centre, AB

That is the only number that's actually known. Everything else is an estimate, correct?

10:10 a.m.

Auditor General of Canada, Office of the Auditor General of Canada

Michael Ferguson

The $9 billion as a number for the budget is a known number, but the amount of cost to actually acquire 65 jets is still an estimate.

10:10 a.m.

Conservative

Laurie Hawn Edmonton Centre, AB

The acquisition, though, the $9-billion budget, is jets and spares and simulators and initial training and so on. I mean, that's a frozen number. We've frozen that number. That number is known, correct?