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

Kyoto Protocol
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Alexa McDonough Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Prime Minister as well.

Ten days from now federal and provincial environment ministers will meet in Halifax to map out Canada's Kyoto commitments. The government is the biggest landlord and operates the largest fleet of vehicles in the land. If the government were offering an ounce of leadership in Kyoto it would raise gas emission standards and retrofit its 68,000 buildings to make them more energy efficient. Those measures alone would deliver 20% on Canada's Kyoto commitments.

Why does it not lead by example? Why does it not become an energy efficient government? That would be leadership on Kyoto.

Kyoto Protocol
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Wascana
Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Minister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to inform the leader of the NDP that we have had a government priority initiative underway for years. We are already at 1990 minus 20% and we are headed toward 1990 minus 30% within the Government of Canada.

Kyoto Protocol
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Joe Comartin Windsor—St. Clair, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have to say to the minister that if he knew his figures he would know that does not even cover 1/1,000 of the public buildings right now. The government has not even retrofitted those.

I want to go back to the Prime Minister. Unions representing workers across the country directly affected by the implementation of Kyoto, looking both at the automotive and the energy sectors, have developed a transition plan for a green economy. Almost 2.5 million Canadian workers are committed to making Kyoto work and they are ready to do it now.

Why is the Prime Minister and his government not ready now? Why will they not commit to government-wide energy efficiencies and do it now, not 10 years from now?

Kyoto Protocol
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, that is exactly what the minister said a minute ago. We are ahead and we are improving our own fleet so we can make a positive contribution to this problem.

I am very happy to see that the unions want to collaborate. I know the provinces will want to collaborate. I know that if all sectors of Canadian society want to collaborate we will attain the Kyoto goal of 2012 by having everybody committed to reducing the problem of CO

2

and climate change.

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

October 10th, 2002 / 2:25 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Peter MacKay Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, NS

Mr. Speaker, the Solicitor General wanted his pet project, the Greenwich Interpretative Centre, completed by the spring of 2001. Contract difficulties between the government and the minister's Liberal friend, Tim Banks, threatened to delay that opening.

Banks has admitted to speaking personally with the minister over the problems and Parks Canada ended up paying an additional $235,000 to Banks to ensure the centre opened on time. This is on top of the $30 million that Banks stands to make on the deal.

Did the minister interfere in the process to help his friend, Banks, sweeten that sweetheart deal?

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Parkdale—High Park
Ontario

Liberal

Sarmite Bulte Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to report that with respect to the $235,000 that the hon. member questions, it was actually moneys that were paid by Parks Canada for actual changes that Parks Canada had requested.

Also, as the hon. member knows, if he looks at the total cost of the project and what the additional changes cost, it is less than 5% which is well below what is normal in the construction industry.

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Peter MacKay Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, NS

Mr. Speaker, I guess some fat cat has the minister's tongue.

Last week the ACOA minister said that the Greenwich development project was a very sound economic development. While Banks, the businessman, bargained hard, the regional minister rolled over and doled out.

Whose interests are being served when a who's who Liberal Party president can make $30 million in rent from a $3.5 million investment? Would the minister have us believe that this deal is in the best interests of P.E.I. and the Canadian taxpayers? I suggest the Auditor General join the ethics counsellor on the island this weekend. Answer that one, minister.

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Humber—St. Barbe—Baie Verte
Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

Gerry Byrne Minister of State (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency)

Mr. Speaker, there are a lot of good interests being taken care of. Let me read a little piece of correspondence that was sent to several stakeholders. It reads:

--let me acknowledge my pleasure that provincially owned lands transferred to the Federal Government are now part of the National Park system, and that development is occurring to provide the public the opportunity to interpret and appreciate the unique aspects of this landscape.

It goes on to say “we support the federal government”.

It is signed by the Progressive Conservative premier of P.E.I., the hon. Pat Binns.

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Jim Abbott Kootenay—Columbia, BC

Mr. Speaker, when the Prime Minister appointed the Minister of Canadian Heritage to her office in 1996, at that time Joe Thornley and his firm had not received one single solitary Canadian heritage contract.

Joe Thornley was and is the heritage minister's campaign manager. Since 1996 Thornley has received over three-quarters of a million dollars in contracts from her department.

Is it not clearly obvious why the Prime Minister needs an independent ethics commissioner to answer to Parliament?

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Parkdale—High Park
Ontario

Liberal

Sarmite Bulte Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to advise the House that Heritage Canada did indeed follow all the prescribed contracting policies and procedures to acquire the communications services of Thornley Fallis Inc.

In fact, as the hon. member probably already knows, these services are provided via the department via a standing offer agreement which is actually put in place competitively through Public Works and Government Services Canada.

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Jim Abbott Kootenay—Columbia, BC

Mr. Speaker, what the Prime Minister and the government is saying is that they do not find it a little strange that he had not had one single solitary contract prior to 1996 until this heritage minister took over.

Let us look at his credentials. Thornley was and is the heritage minister's campaign manager. Thornley was former president of the Liberal youth. Thornley is now chair of the federal Liberal agency, which just shows that membership does have its privileges.

Why can the Prime Minister not understand that we need an independent ethics commissioner?

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Parkdale—High Park
Ontario

Liberal

Sarmite Bulte Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, I do not think the hon. member was listening. The contract was obtained through an open competitive process. It was done via Public Works and Government Services Canada, and it was also won on the merits.

Delegations Abroad
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Bloc

Francine Lalonde Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, the Prime Minister ridiculed the role of Quebec's general delegations abroad. Yet, his own Minister for International Trade said that when he was in the private sector, he was very pleased when he dealt with Quebec's general delegations.

Before insulting Quebec, should the Prime Minister not ask those cabinet members who know whether what he is about to say makes sense, and should he not refrain from making such statements if they do not make sense?

Delegations Abroad
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, there was a time when all the provinces had delegations abroad, including British Columbia, Saskatchewan and Ontario, which had many. These provinces decided to reduce their spending and to close their offices. When they need someone to represent them, they use the facilities provided by the federal Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade.

Quebec, however, has maintained its delegations and is spending over $100 million annually for that purpose. It has the right to do so. But that same government spends less than any other government on health.

Delegations Abroad
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Francine Lalonde Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, the hon. member for Verdun—Saint-Henri—Saint-Paul—Pointe Saint-Charles hastened to point out to the Prime Minister that Quebec's delegations are an illustration of Quebec's distinct nature.

Even though the Prime Minister boasts about having recognized Quebec's distinct nature in a resolution adopted by the House of Commons, is he not being blinded again by his contempt for Quebec, to the point where his own members and ministers have to call him to order?