House of Commons Hansard #14 of the 36th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was political.

Topics

Canada Pension Plan
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

LaSalle—Émard
Québec

Liberal

Paul Martin Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I would really suggest that members of the Reform Party hire better researchers. If they did, they would know that in terms of the investment board a nominating committee has been put together of members named by the provinces and the federal government. The nominating committee, in turn, will name an arm's length board of experts.

All the hon. member has to do, rather than standing here and making a bit of a dope of himself in the House of Commons, is a little research and he would understand what is going on.

Canada Pension Plan
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Reform

Dick Harris Prince George—Bulkley Valley, BC

Mr. Speaker, in case you did not get it, the answer was no. He also said to all of us “trust us”.

Canadians trusted the Liberals with the current pension plan and now it is in a $560 billion debt hole. Trust is simply not good enough.

Will the Minister of Finance display a real commitment to openness and transparency and say today that he will see that the new CPP investment board will in fact—

Canada Pension Plan
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. Minister of Finance.

Canada Pension Plan
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

LaSalle—Émard
Québec

Liberal

Paul Martin Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I suggest to the hon. member that he might want to take a look at the legislation.

The board's deliberations will be public. It will report to Canadian contributors. It will be operating the same way as any other pension fund does. It will be an arm's length board from government. It will be subject to exactly the same rules as every other pension plan.

What more does the hon. member want?

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

October 9th, 1997 / 2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Jocelyne Girard-Bujold Jonquière, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Public Works.

Last Friday, the Minister of Public Works admitted that more than 35% of government contracts, totalling some $3 billion, were untendered. The day before last, the Auditor General of Canada gave the example of a department that achieved a 40% saving by systematically going out to public tender.

Given the party financing practices at the federal level—

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. Minister of Public Works and Government Services.

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel
Québec

Liberal

Alfonso Gagliano Minister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, I have already answered this question in the House. Yes, the vast majority of contracts awarded by the Government of Canada are awarded by public tendering. A number of other contracts, amounting to approximately 35%, while they do go to tender, are awarded to sole source suppliers. This is done for national security reasons or in an emergency. In each case, the information is made public and everything can be checked.

The hon. member should check and see what the procedure is, in the Government of Canada, for awarding contracts.

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Jocelyne Girard-Bujold Jonquière, QC

Mr. Speaker, will the minister admit that the fact that more than one third of all contracts are awarded without going to public tender is giving the business community the message that they better make generous donations to the ruling party if they hope to get a share of the pie?

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel
Québec

Liberal

Alfonso Gagliano Minister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, I understand that the hon. member is trying to score political points, but if she looked at the facts, she would see that even the auditor general stated clearly in his reports that my department and this government are making tremendous progress.

When we took office, 50% of government contracts were sole sourced. Now there are only 35%. We are currently putting measures in place, and our objective is to reduce their amount to zero if at all feasible.

Fisheries
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Reform

Diane Ablonczy Calgary—Nose Hill, AB

Mr. Speaker, when the Liberal government introduced TAGS four years ago it promised to restructure the Atlantic fishing industry. Last night on national television the fisheries minister admitted that the Liberals “will have to face up to the fact that we still have a restructuring problem”.

Will the minister now admit to the House that the government has failed the Atlantic fishermen who turned to it for help? The Liberal game of TAGS has left fishermen holding the bag.

Fisheries
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Victoria
B.C.

Liberal

David Anderson Minister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, in light of the report of the Harris committee, the Cashin report, the Fisheries Resources Conservation Council report and now the auditor general's report, it is perfectly clear there is a continuing problem in Atlantic Canada with respect to the fishery.

We have had a moratorium on the catching of groundfish. We have discovered that stocks are not returning as we had hoped four years ago.

There is still a problem to be addressed. I hope the Reform Party will continue to assist in finding a solution to this serious problem.

Fisheries
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Reform

Diane Ablonczy Calgary—Nose Hill, AB

Mr. Speaker, four years ago Atlantic fishermen were told that TAGS would help lead them to a new life. Instead TAGS tied them to a government program, destroyed their hopes and betrayed their trust.

Will the Prime Minister show leadership now and apologize to Atlantic Canadians for betraying that trust?

Fisheries
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis
Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, let us not exaggerate things here. We are talking about the livelihoods of Canadians that have disappeared, and we care for them. There are already excesses again on this side of the House.

This strategy was put forward in a situation of crisis and urgency, and out of the 40,000 there are 15,000 who have been able to adjust outside of the industry. That is something.

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Kamouraska—Rivière-Du-Loup—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Human Resources Development.

Now that there is a surplus of over $12 billion in the unemployment insurance fund and the auditor general, and I quote, “—urges Human Resources Development Canada to table a distinct report to Parliament with respect to the Employment Insurance Account to ensure its transparency”, does the minister intend to follow up on this urgent recommendation of the auditor general or not?

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis
Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, we are obviously aware of what the auditor general told us in his report and we have also noticed that he asked us for certain information that already appears in the government's budget each year.

So we were told that they did not know what we were doing with the employment insurance surplus. I wish to take issue with this approach, because this information is clearly indicated in the budget we table each year.