House of Commons Hansard #9 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was industry.

Topics

Access to Information

10 a.m.

The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)

I have the honour to place on the table pursuant to section 39(1) of the Access to Information Act, a special report to Parliament entitled “Response to the Report of the Access to Information Review Task Force”.

This document is deemed permanently referred to the Standing Committee on Government Operations and Estimates.

Supreme Court of Canada Appointment
Routine Proceedings

October 10th, 2002 / 10 a.m.

Halifax West
Nova Scotia

Liberal

Geoff Regan Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to table, in both official languages, a copy of the commission constituting the Hon. Marie Deschamps, Puisne Judge of the Supreme Court of Canada, Deputy of the Governor General, to do, in Her Excellency's name, all acts on her part necessary to be done during Her Excellency's pleasure, dated August 7, 2002.

Order in Council Appointments
Routine Proceedings

10 a.m.

Halifax West
Nova Scotia

Liberal

Geoff Regan Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I also am pleased to table, in both official languages, a number of order in council appointments made recently by the government.

Government Response to Petitions
Routine Proceedings

10 a.m.

Halifax West
Nova Scotia

Liberal

Geoff Regan Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36(8) I have the honour to table, in both official languages, the government's response to five petitions.

Points of Order
Routine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

Bloc

Michel Gauthier Roberval, QC

Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. This week we raised a very specific problem with the Chair, and the situation is repeating itself today. I would like to draw it to your attention.

A little earlier this week, we were indignant about the softwood lumber assistance plan not being tabled in the House of Commons, as it should have been, but elsewhere instead.

To some extent, you agreed with us and I would remind you that, this morning, I was expecting the Minister of Public Works to table the internal audit report concerning the sponsorship program.

We have learned from the current events on the Hill for today that the Minister of Public Works is going to release the internal audit report on the sponsorship scandal at 2 p.m. today outside this House, whereas this is supposed to be done in the House of Commons.

Mr. Speaker, I would ask you this: does this not go directly against the argument we made earlier this week in this House, namely that important documents should be tabled in the House of Commons at the appropriate time?

Also, to conclude, I emphasize that tabling the internal investigation report at 2 o'clock this afternoon, outside the House of Commons, denies the opposition access to the document to analyze it and question the government in the House of Commons today, Thursday, this being the last significant oral question period before next week's recess. In other words, by not abiding by the spirit of the Standing Orders, the Minister of Public Works is gagging the opposition, preventing us from doing our job on this issue, where the government is involved in one of the worst scandals to date.

Mr. Speaker, I would ask that you remind the hon. Minister of Public Works that the document in question ought to be tabled in this place at 10 o'clock this morning, so that opposition members can use it to question the government about the sponsorship scandal. Instead, they are gagging us, ignoring the rights of the House and of its members, and going against the spirit of the Standing Orders and what was advocated in this place this week.

The fact that such a major report is scheduled to be tabled at the very time that statements by members and oral question period get under way start speaks volumes about the public works minister's desire to deny parliamentarians the chance, just before the recess, to see all that is contained in this report, hoping that this news will become old news over our week off.

On behalf of the Bloc Quebecois—and of all opposition parties, I am sure—I must say I find it unacceptable that we should be prevented from questioning the government on such an incriminating report. I ask that you remind the government of its obligation to table important documents in the appropriate place, that is in the House of Commons, and at the appropriate time, not when it suits the government, to prevent us from asking questions.

Points of Order
Routine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell
Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria Minister of State and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, very briefly, if the member will be patient, I will leave the House in a few minutes to get some information on this and I will come back to make a point of order in 15 or 20 minutes to inform the House about this.

As is the case every morning, we have taken a look at all the major issues. I must say that I was not aware of this one. As is often the case, I had the opportunity to talk with my counterparts from the opposition earlier this morning and they did not raise this issue either.

I will get some information right now and I will report to the House by making a point of order in a few minutes, after the bills are introduced in the House.

Points of Order
Routine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)

We will wait for the leader of the government to report back.

Points of Order
Routine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

NDP

Bill Blaikie Winnipeg—Transcona, MB

Mr. Speaker, we appreciate the government House leader's intervention but it does not necessarily end the point of order. It seems to me that the government House leader should realize that the government has an opportunity here to make good on whatever contrition it felt as a result of what happened earlier in the week. Therefore I would certainly urge the government to take seriously the objections of the House leader of the Bloc Quebecois with respect to this matter and make sure that the House for once is properly respected with respect to the kind of information the government intends to make available later this afternoon.

Points of Order
Routine Proceedings

10:10 a.m.

The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)

As you have said it so well, let us give the government a chance to work on this problem.

Export and Import of Rough Diamonds Act
Routine Proceedings

10:10 a.m.

Vancouver South—Burnaby
B.C.

Liberal

Herb Dhaliwal Minister of Natural Resources

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-14, an act providing for controls on the export, import or transit across Canada of rough diamonds and for a certification scheme for their export in order to meet Canada's obligations under the Kimberley Process.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

The Pension Benefits Standards Act, 1985
Routine Proceedings

10:10 a.m.

Bloc

Pauline Picard Drummond, QC

moved for leave to introduce BillC-226, An Act to amend the Pension Benefits Standards Act, 1985 (investment criteria).

Mr. Speaker, the text of this bill amends the Pension Benefits Standards Act, 1985, to require the administrators of pension funds to prepare an annual report on the social, ethical and environmental factors that have been considered in the selection, retention and liquidation of investments.

I remind the House that half the money traded on world financial markets belong to small investors in pension funds. This represents about $90 billion for businesses under federal control. This bill would provide a better framework for investments.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

Vimy Ridge Day Act
Routine Proceedings

10:10 a.m.

Liberal

Brent St. Denis Algoma—Manitoulin, ON

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-227, an act respecting a national day of remembrance of the Battle of Vimy Ridge.

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 86.1, I ask that the bill be reinstated at the same stage that it was when the session broke, which was that it had concluded second reading and was referred to the heritage committee. I appreciate the agreement of the House at that time.

I just want to point out that the Battle of Vimy Ridge, which took place on April 9, 1917, was a turning point in World War I. The Canadians, who fought together with numerous battalions for the first time and under Canadian command, took Vimy Ridge, which was a turning point in World War I, and earned Canada a place at the table of the signing of the Treaty of Versailles.

I want to thank Bob Manuel of Elliot Lake for his great effort to bring a citizen's initiative like this forward. For greater clarity, April 9 of each year would not be a statutory holiday but a day of recognition of this very important historical event.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

Vimy Ridge Day Act
Routine Proceedings

10:15 a.m.

The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)

The Chair is satisfied that the bill is in the same form as Bill C-409 was at the time of prorogation of the first session, 37th Parliament. Accordingly, pursuant to Standing Order 86(1), the bill is deemed read a second time and referred to the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage.

(Bill read the second time and referred to a committee)

Petitions
Routine Proceedings

10:15 a.m.

Liberal

Jeannot Castonguay Madawaska—Restigouche, NB

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36, I have the pleasure of submitting two petitions signed by constituents of Edmonton West, who condemn any form of creation and use of child pornography.

Therefore, the petitioners call upon Parliament to protect our children and take all necessary steps to ensure that all material that promotes and glorifies pedophilia and sadomasochism be declared illegal.

Petitions
Routine Proceedings

10:15 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

James Lunney Nanaimo—Alberni, BC

Mr. Speaker, I have two petitions this morning. The first has to do with the softwood lumber dispute. There are some 150 signatures from the people of Port Alberni, Parksville, Duncan and other coastal communities. The petition has even greater significance in light of the fact that there were four more mill closures just one week ago today and some 500 more jobs lost in a community of about 18,000.

The petitioners are calling upon the government to act speedily to end this softwood lumber dispute. Further, they are calling for a ban on the export of logs to the United States while this dispute continues.