House of Commons Hansard #127 of the 36th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was health.

Topics

Aboriginal Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Windsor West
Ontario

Liberal

Herb Gray Deputy Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, first of all the hon. member should look at the specific circumstances of each case. I do not think it is right for him to say there is a general public policy approach on the particular point he has raised.

With respect to what he asked about costs of litigation, this is one of the areas among many that I am starting to explore with church organizations in the dialogue with them that I have undertaken and which will be continuing as early as next week.

Mamquam Blind Channel
Oral Question Period

October 5th, 2000 / 2:30 p.m.

Reform

John Reynolds West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast, BC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans has announced millions of dollars in contracts for dredging sandbars in Ontario and Atlantic Canada. I have been requesting that the ministry dredge the Mamquam blind channel in Squamish, B.C. for over two years. The previous minister turned me down, and I quote from his letter, which said that dredging “should be funded by the private sector” and he would no longer be providing dredging in commercial channels.

Apart from the impending election, what has changed?

Mamquam Blind Channel
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Labrador
Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

Lawrence O'Brien Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, I will certainly take the information and the question under advisement. We will report to the hon. member at a future date.

Mamquam Blind Channel
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Reform

John Reynolds West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast, BC

Mr. Speaker, the people of British Columbia have been waiting for over two years to have this very unsafe channel dredged but were told there was no more money for dredging from the government and that it has to be done by the private sector.

What is the difference between an unsafe harbour in British Columbia and an unsafe one in Ontario and Atlantic Canada?

Mamquam Blind Channel
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Labrador
Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

Lawrence O'Brien Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, safety of all harbours and all ports is a very fundamental and important issue. I can say that the fundamental issue is safety. The Department of Fisheries and Oceans will look at all aspects and we will report to the member at a later date.

Shipbuilding
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Bloc

Antoine Dubé Lévis, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Liberal government is up to its ears in the greatest of contradictions.

This morning, the Liberal MPs passed my bill on shipbuilding clause by clause. On the opposite side of the coin, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance objected with every ounce of his energy to that bill being passed on third reading.

Can the Minister of Industry tell us on whose behalf the representative of the Minister of Finance is objecting to the prompt passage of my bill?

Shipbuilding
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell
Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, it is somewhat debatable whether this matter has anything to do with government policy.

All I can say is that the procedure for handling a private member's bill in parliamentary committee, the stage for the report to the House of Commons, the stage for adoption of the report, and then the third reading stage, are all well known and are all covered by the standing orders of the House of Commons.

Shipbuilding
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Bloc

Antoine Dubé Lévis, QC

Mr. Speaker, I have sufficient experience in this House, after seven years, to know that if the government wanted to get this bill through quickly, it had only to use the proposal by my colleague from Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot this morning, but it refused.

Why does it refuse to pass this bill promptly when it is so important and so urgent for shipbuilding in Canada?

Shipbuilding
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell
Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, there are scores of private members' bills, all of them on the order paper, dealing with such matters as increased benefits for firefighters, electoral democracy and the criminal code, just to mention the debates scheduled for the next few days. Why should the hon. member's bill bypass all the other members' bills? That is the question.

Regional Development Agencies
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Reform

Charlie Penson Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, according to the public accounts, Canadian taxpayers are the big losers again in this year's $80 million write-off of bad loans by the government's regional development agencies.

It does not matter how it is dressed up, whether it be grants, loans or repayable contributions, the bottom line is that these programs waste millions of dollars every year.

With this kind of record, why is the government still in the business of handing out Canadians' hard-earned tax dollars in corporate welfare and other vote buying schemes?

Regional Development Agencies
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Gander—Grand Falls
Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

George Baker Minister of Veterans Affairs and Secretary of State (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency)

Mr. Speaker, the Canadian Alliance has already announced that it wants to do away with all assistance to the high unemployment areas of Canada, to end all of the regional development agencies. To Alliance members it is a case of survival of the fittest here in Canada. This is one big game of Survivor with them. The next thing they will be announcing Richard Hatch as their policy director.

Regional Development Agencies
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Reform

Charlie Penson Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, no matter what the minister says, he cannot hide the fact that over $80 million of taxpayers' money was wasted which could have gone to purchase dozens of MRIs to help ease Canada's health care crisis.

The fact is, regional development agencies are chronic losers and the minister knows it. Since 1995 the government has written off over $280 million in bad loans. Now it wants to expand this program with money from the discredited TJF.

Given this record of mismanagement, why does the minister not scrap this program altogether?

Regional Development Agencies
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Gander—Grand Falls
Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

George Baker Minister of Veterans Affairs and Secretary of State (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency)

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is correct in that a certain amount of these write-offs, these grants, $4 million, $5 million had to be written off, not forgiven but written off by the public accounts the other day. We agree with them. That is why we changed the system to loans and no more grants.

In fact, over half of the grants that the hon. member is talking about were given while his bosom pals, the Tories, were in power.

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Bernard Bigras Rosemont, QC

Mr. Speaker, with respect to the transfer of the Rosemont grant to Saint-Maurice, the government is still refusing to answer our questions, using the fact that the matter is under police investigation as an excuse.

Will the President of the Treasury Board tell us why the amount of the $165,984 grant appears in the public accounts of 2000 under the heading “Losses of public money due to an offence or illegal act”, when the Minister of Human Resources Development said yesterday that the police investigation was ongoing?

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Laval West
Québec

Liberal

Raymonde Folco Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, I would suggest that the opposition members should stop playing games. They should know that the crown reimburses—