House of Commons Hansard #56 of the 35th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was tobacco.

Topics

Pleasure Craft
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Yvan Bernier Gaspé, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans.

Last Thursday, the minister argued in this House that registering pleasure craft and charging fees for them would mean greater safety in pleasure boating. The Bloc Quebecois agrees that safety on the waterways is important, but we strongly question the real motives of the minister.

What services will the Coast Guard offer pedal boats, rowboats and canoes that warrant their paying a new tax of up to $35 annually?

Pleasure Craft
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Bonavista—Trinity—Conception
Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

Fred Mifflin Minister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, in response to the hon. member's question, which I know was serious, I remind him and the House there are 250 recreational boating accidents that end in fatality, 50 per cent of which occur in Ontario and Quebec.

These are issues we should concern ourselves with. It is exactly those issue that have caused the coast guard and my department to enter into a discussion with recreational organizations to make sure that things like life jackets and the material that smaller boats are made of are safetied, in particular in areas where we cannot provide the search and rescue facilities to respond to the well over 10,000 incidents we have in Canada during the year.

I understand where the hon. member is coming from but I have to tell him it is in response to serious business and it is for the protection of Canadians at large.

Pleasure Craft
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Yvan Bernier Gaspé, QC

Mr. Speaker, will the minister not acknowledge that the objective of safety he is hiding behind is nothing more than a pretext, because his real aim is to impose a hidden tax on pleasure boaters in order to bring in $14 million?

Pleasure Craft
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Bonavista—Trinity—Conception
Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

Fred Mifflin Minister of Fisheries and Oceans

No, Mr. Speaker, I am not intending to bring in a disguised tax. There will be some fees which will be negotiated with the organizations that are calling for these increased safety standards.

The name of the game is increased safety for Canadians. If this is the price, I think it is a good price to pay for the safety and the possible reduction in the loss of 250 lives, one being too many.

Canadian International Development Agency
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Reform

Lee Morrison Swift Current—Maple Creek—Assiniboia, SK

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister for International Co-operation.

Of the 20 top suppliers of service contracts to CIDA in 1995, 14, that is 70 per cent, had made donations in 1994 to the Liberal Party compared with less than 1 per cent of Canadian companies overall.

For example, in 1994 SNC Lavalin, Tecsault Inc., Cooper's & Lybrand and a few of their associates and subsidiaries collectively donated $137,000. In 1995 they snagged CIDA contracts with an aggregate value of $22.5 million. Is this a coincidence?

Canadian International Development Agency
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Michel
Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Minister for International Cooperation and Minister responsible for Francophonie

Mr. Speaker, we have worked very hard at CIDA in the last few years to build a very open bidding system for all Canadian companies.

The member can be absolutely sure the companies that get the contracts are the companies that have really prepared the best bid for the Canadian taxpayer and the countries that actually get them. Yesterday I had a question about the province they come from. They reflect exactly the number of requests and bids prepared from that region so that both will count either from the region and the companies.

We always have this open system which is quite transparent. I will be devoting the end of June and the beginning of July to going across the country to explain that system to business people in other regions, western and eastern Canada, so they can make more bids and get more contracts because it is very important.

Canadian International Development Agency
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Reform

Lee Morrison Swift Current—Maple Creek—Assiniboia, SK

Mr. Speaker, no company can even bid without the minister's approval.

Fifteen of the top CIDA contractors are based in Quebec. Clark Builders of Edmonton, with multimillion dollar contracts in Russia, China and Japan, does not even bother to submit its name anymore to what its president refers to as the Quebec international development agency.

Does the minister believe that CIDA's regionally biased contracting policy is beneficial to his quest for national unity?

Canadian International Development Agency
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Michel
Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Minister for International Cooperation and Minister responsible for Francophonie

Mr. Speaker, I think this is absolutely ludicrous.

If we look at the number of companies that submitted prequalification bids last year, 245 happen to be from Quebec and 187 from Ontario. The number of contracts given to Quebec companies reflects the number of bids they have made. If more Quebec companies bid for contracts they end up having more.

It is the responsibility of business people from all regions to bid for contracts. I can show the member the percentage which reflects perfectly the number of bids we received, and we are very proud of it.

Air Pollution
Oral Question Period

June 4th, 1996 / 2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Jean Payne St. John's West, NL

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of the Environment.

A recent pollution probe study estimates that smog is responsible for 380 deaths per year, 15 deaths per month, from heart and lung disease. How is the government addressing the issue of air pollution to ensure Canadians continue to have clean air to breathe?

Air Pollution
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

York—Simcoe
Ontario

Liberal

Karen Kraft Sloan Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, transportation is one of the major causes of air pollution. The government has a strong commitment to dealing with this problem. One of the ways we have to address this problem is to reduce automobile emissions.

I am very pleased to say the Minister of the Environment is announcing today in Toronto a new set of national standards for automobile emissions. I am very pleased to say it is the strongest set of standards in the world.

Citizenship
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Osvaldo Nunez Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration.

We learned last week that the minister was getting ready to eliminate the right to citizenship for those who are born in Canada of parents who are not Canadian citizens themselves. Such a measure would directly affect children of people recognized as refugees by Canada as well as children whose parents do not have Canadian citizenship.

Will the minister confirm this rumour that she has herself started, to the effect that Canada intends to toughen its policy with regard to children of refugees, among others?

Citizenship
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Saint-Henri—Westmount
Québec

Liberal

Lucienne Robillard Minister of Citizenship and Immigration and Acting Minister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, if I am not mistaken, the member for Bourassa sits on the immigration committee which studied proposals to revise the Citizenship Act, and one of the recommendations made by this committee was to review the issue of citizenship for children born in Canada. It is within that context that we are studying all aspects of this issue.

Taro Dump
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Reform

Keith Martin Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, BC

Mr. Speaker, the proposed Taro dump on the Niagara escarpment is to harbour some 11 million tonnes of hazardous waste. There are serious health concerns regarding the dump. I would like to know if the Minister of the Environment will do a full environmental assessment of the proposed dump site.

Taro Dump
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

York—Simcoe
Ontario

Liberal

Karen Kraft Sloan Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, I will take the question under advisement.

Tobacco Products
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Nelson Riis Kamloops, BC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Health.

The Minister of Health announced that from June 1 he will regulate human sperm in Canada under the Food and Drugs Act. He is proposing that cheeses made from unpasteurized milk be also restricted under the Food and Drugs Act.

However, cigarettes, still the major preventable cause of disease and death, remain unregulated. When will the Minister of Health regulate tobacco products by including them under the Food an Drugs Act as well?