House of Commons Hansard #170 of the 37th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was military.

Topics

Taxation
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Yvan Loubier Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, QC

Mr. Speaker, by unilaterally imposing its constitution after the 1982 power grab, the federal government gave itself the first political tool needed to impose its will on Quebec.

Is the government not in the process of giving itself a second tool, fiscal imbalance, which it needed to impose, yet again, its economic and social vision on Quebec?

Taxation
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

LaSalle—Émard
Québec

Liberal

Paul Martin Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the member knows very well that according to the conference board projections used by the Séguin commission, there is no fiscal imbalance. The projections demonstrate quite clearly that there will not be an exorbitant surplus in the next five years. If we look at the basic assumptions for the next 15 years, they still support the position of the Government of Canada.

Taxation
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Yvan Loubier Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, QC

Mr. Speaker, since 1982, the Canadian federalist approach has not changed. Political decisions are made in Ottawa and the provinces merely carry them out like slaves.

Will the Prime Minister admit that by maintaining this fiscal imbalance, the federal government has giving itself the economic power that it lacked, and that with this power, it will be able to limit as it pleases Quebec's ability to act?

Taxation
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion President of the Queen's Privy Council for Canada and Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, spending on Government of Canada programs is around 12% of the GDP. This is the lowest level since 1948. Canada is one of the most decentralized federations in the world, and it is even more decentralized than in 1982.

Quebecers will remember, particularly today, when we are celebrating the 20th anniversary of the charter, the shameful behaviour of the Bloc Quebecois in parliament. The way the member insulted the Minister of Justice is not worthy of Quebecers.

Health
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Gerry Ritz Battlefords—Lloydminster, SK

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the auditor general reported that Health Canada accepted a $300,000 bid to supply telecommunications training. The contract, which was signed on March 31, 1998, stipulated that the training must be completed the very same day. Despite the fact that Health Canada could never explain how this training could be accomplished in one day, public works paid the bill.

How can the minister of public works justify this outrageous abuse of taxpayers' money?

Health
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell
Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria Minister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, there has been no so-called outrageous abuse of taxpayers' money.

The department of public works followed very closely the rules in this regard both in relation to contracting and the processing of the payments and the final payments made in regard to these invoices.

Health
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Gerry Ritz Battlefords—Lloydminster, SK

Mr. Speaker, the auditor general sees it a little differently. She says this Health Canada program “does not address the requirement to properly control and manage government assets”.

Again I ask the minister of public works, does he have any proof that this March madness training was ever delivered?

Health
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell
Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria Minister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is not going to try here to make allegations that are incorrect. In regard to the contract in question, policies have been followed very closely. My department has followed the approved policy using the advanced contract award notices. In fact, in addition, and perhaps this is the most important, there has been no overpayment in this regard.

The Environment
Oral Question Period

April 17th, 2002 / 2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Larry Bagnell Yukon, YT

Mr. Speaker, given that United States senator Frank Murkowski has just added an amendment to the energy bill that would allow drilling in ANWAR, given that the Prime Minister and the Government of Canada have fought against this for years, given that the Ministers of the Environment and Foreign Affairs have fought to protect the Gwich'in people of northern Canada, and given that the Porcupine caribou herd is threatened, could the Minister of the Environment guarantee to us that Canada will keep up this fight until the vote in the U.S. senate tomorrow?

The Environment
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Victoria
B.C.

Liberal

David Anderson Minister of the Environment

Certainly, Mr. Speaker, and I should add that the Government of Canada expects that tomorrow we will have a clear rejection by the United States senate of the proposal to drill on the 1002 lands of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

The protection of the Porcupine River caribou herd is critical to the culture of the Gwich'in people and drilling in the calving grounds of this herd would pose risks to that herd and would be a serious mistake. I should add that this position had been made to the government of the United States and to individual legislatures of the United States by members of the government, the member for Yukon and many others at every possible occasion.

Airline Industry
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

James Moore Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, in her third interim report, Ms. Debra Ward, the government's adviser on airline restructuring, said:

Much has been said recently about the “hidden” costs of flying---user fees that are piled on passengers. The most recent, the security fee, is being seen by some as the last straw and could negatively affect people's decisions to fly. To stimulate travel, government could consider reducing or eliminating some of the fees and taxes it is currently imposing on the airline sector.

Given that the government's own independent adviser is calling for a tax cut on flying, will the minister please listen for once?

Airline Industry
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Don Valley East
Ontario

Liberal

David Collenette Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I never cease to be amazed at the Alliance. These are the people who believe in a balanced budget. Guess who delivered a balanced budget? It was this government.

The fact is, the user charges in the airline industry have been accepted by all parties in the House. The system has worked extremely well in covering all of the various expenditures. I believe the travelling public supports the government's policy.

Airline Industry
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

James Moore Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am tempted to save the minister more time. He could write our campaign commercials for us.

Air Alma has just died, CanJet is trying to fly again, Tango is struggling, WestJet is trying to expand and regionals are struggling to survive under the might of the taxes of the government.

Given that he knows this tax is going to bring in a huge surplus, why will the transport minister not move up the date when he is going to cut the tax to before the summer? If air carriers do not make a profit in the summer they do not make it at all. Will he move up the tax cut, cut the tax right now, so that the air carriers can fly? Will he do it?

Airline Industry
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Don Valley East
Ontario

Liberal

David Collenette Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I always point out that the hon. member does not do his homework. I know he has been otherwise engaged in the last few weeks, but perhaps he missed it yesterday that I.M.P. has announced that CanJet will resume flying this summer. Perhaps he has missed the fact that Skyservice has hooked up with the largest charter operation in the country.

What he obviously does not understand is that the policy of the government, which was working before September 11 and was adversely affected by the events of September 11, is now working once again. Why will he not recognize that?

The Constitution
Oral Question Period

3 p.m.

Bloc

Pauline Picard Drummond, QC

Mr. Speaker, the message sent back in 1982 was that from now on the federal government can act without Quebec's consent. For example, with the parental leave, instead of giving back to Quebec the taxes collected from its people, the federal government continues to want to impose a single vision, namely its own.

Can the Prime Minister deny that the attitude which prevailed toward Quebec in 1982 when the constitution was unilaterally patriated continues to prevail today as far as finances are concerned, and that this approach consists in keeping the money in Ottawa while imposing Ottawa's views on Quebec?