House of Commons Hansard #47 of the 36th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was housing.

Topics

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

11:40 a.m.

Reform

John Duncan Vancouver Island North, BC

Mr. Speaker, the government is holding a trust. Supposedly it collects public moneys to spend in the public interest. In order to ensure it occurs that way we have a Financial Administration Act that binds the minister and her department.

The minister has broken this law. In a democracy ministers resign—

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

11:40 a.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

11:40 a.m.

The Deputy Speaker

I do not think the hon. member in preambles to questions should be suggesting that there has been any breaking of the laws of this country in the House. If he wishes to do that, there are proper ways of doing it and we will not have it in preambles to questions. He will proceed with his question directly.

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

11:40 a.m.

Reform

John Duncan Vancouver Island North, BC

Mr. Speaker, in a democracy ministers resign when they do not meet this standard. Why does the minister think she is above the law?

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

11:40 a.m.

Brant
Ontario

Liberal

Jane Stewart Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, what I would like to say again is that I am taking this undertaking very seriously. We have made it public. We have a plan of action that is going to fix the problem.

I would like to report to the House that today we have completed yet another file of the 37 with the John Howard Society. We have found that there is nothing untoward in that undertaking. We will continue to look at the remaining files and report to the House as the studies are completed.

Agriculture
Oral Question Period

11:40 a.m.

Reform

Howard Hilstrom Selkirk—Interlake, MB

Mr. Speaker, Saskatchewan grandmother and farmer, Lillian Kurtz, has been driven to hunger strike because the Liberal government is ignoring her pleas to address the farm income crisis. At the same time the HRDC minister has broken her own grant rules, unlawfully diverting taxpayers' money that could have helped people like Lillian.

Why is the Prime Minister turning his back on farmers like Lillian Kurtz while still allowing the HRDC minister to mismanage billions of dollars?

Agriculture
Oral Question Period

11:40 a.m.

Windsor West
Ontario

Liberal

Herb Gray Deputy Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, as usual, the hon. member's premise is totally wrong. The government is providing over a billion and a half dollars of assistance to farmers in Saskatchewan and elsewhere. We are very concerned about their problems.

The allegation that the Minister of Human Resources Development is mismanaging government funds is totally wrong, totally unwarranted, not demonstrated by the audit, and the auditor general is carrying out his own audit. I am confident that this will confirm that the minister is carrying out the right approach in identifying and solving the problems through her six point program, which the auditor general has also approved.

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Bloc

Michel Gauthier Roberval, QC

Mr. Speaker, the minister, whose statements in this House contradict her department's documents, as I just demonstrated, also told us to do our own research. She will not give us her lists, on the ground that we have access to them.

We checked. I phoned Mr. Gagné, the regional director for Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean, who referred me to the minister's office. My colleague, the Bloc Quebecois leader, phoned in his riding of Laurier—Sainte-Marie. He too was referred to the minister's office.

Not only does she contradict her own department's documents, but the minister is denying us access to them, contrary to what she told the House this week, and contrary to what the Prime Minister said.

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Brant
Ontario

Liberal

Jane Stewart Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, I am glad to report to the House that the Deputy Minister of Human Resources Development spoke with all of the regional employment officials yesterday and advised them that they should tell all of their directors at the human resources development offices to be prepared—

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

That's not true. False.

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

The Deputy Speaker

Order, please. Members are entitled to give answers and ask questions without interruptions of this kind. I know that hon. members will want to be very careful in the choice of words they use.

Agriculture
Oral Question Period

February 11th, 2000 / 11:45 a.m.

Liberal

Rey D. Pagtakhan Winnipeg North—St. Paul, MB

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food.

We learned today, in the midst of a desperate situation for farmers, that the Saskatchewan government terminated its 40% share of funding in the joint federal-provincial agricultural assistance program.

Will the 60% federal share continue to be given to our farmers? What is the minister doing to secure a new nation-wide program on farm income to help our farmers?

Agriculture
Oral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Prince Edward—Hastings
Ontario

Liberal

Lyle Vanclief Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, the Saskatchewan government, even though it signed an agreement to participate with a 40% portion to assist its farmers in a targeted method, has been asking to withdraw.

I have given it the opportunity, if it wishes to withdraw. I have guaranteed the farmers that the federal money will be targeted to those farmers with serious difficulty. If the Saskatchewan government wants to send money to farmers whether they need it or not, for whatever reason, to do that it will now have the opportunity to discuss that with the producers.

We will target our money and we will continue to improve the criteria for the 1999 program.

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Reform

Ken Epp Elk Island, AB

Mr. Speaker, when an automobile manufacturer finds a flaw in a sample of vehicles, then all of the vehicles are recalled and the fault is corrected.

A one-half per cent sample of the files in HRDC has shown an 80% rate of accountability failure. It is statistically valid to conclude that about 24,000 of the 30,000 files have faulty administration or documentation.

How can the Prime Minister reduce this to $251.50?