House of Commons Hansard #123 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was country.

Topics

The Environment
Oral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

The Deputy Speaker

The hon. member for Rosemont—Petite-Patrie.

The Environment
Oral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Bloc

Bernard Bigras Rosemont—Petite-Patrie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the lead role the government is playing relates to financing the oil and gas industry rather than environmentally friendly industries.

Does the Minister of the Environment intend to make the next leader of the Liberal Party aware of the true issues at stake with the Kyoto protocol, and to remind him that attaining those objectives is irreconcilable with the taxation measures put forward by the member for LaSalle—Émard, measures that benefit the major polluters, namely the oil and gas companies bankrolling his campaign?

The Environment
Oral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Victoria
B.C.

Liberal

David Anderson Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, I can assure the hon. member that green industry is truly one private sector industry that is a leader worldwide. Clearly, exportation of our industry is very high, and this is a sector supported by the federal government.

As for greenhouse gas emissions, I repeat: we are convinced that we will achieve a 6% reduction over the 1990 levels.

Human Resources Development Canada
Oral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Brian Pallister Portage—Lisgar, MB

Mr. Speaker, it was more than a year and a half ago that the minister was alerted to serious problems within her department concerning a $7.5 million Toronto area jobs project. Rather than asking the hard questions and getting to the bottom of the problem, she chose to turn a blind eye and do nothing for months. It was just two weeks ago that the RCMP was finally contacted.

Why has the minister consistently avoided making the difficult decisions necessary to clean up her department?

Human Resources Development Canada
Oral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Brant
Ontario

Liberal

Jane Stewart Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member can continue to engage in speculation but he knows there is an ongoing police investigation. He knows that the Department of Human Resources Development Canada is co-operating with the police. He knows that the department has already taken severe disciplinary action up to and including firing. He knows that I will not be sharing any more details with him because I do not want to jeopardize this ongoing investigation.

Human Resources Development Canada
Oral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Brian Pallister Portage—Lisgar, MB

Mr. Speaker, it always seems to be somebody else's fault.

We all remember the notorious Paul Cochrane, the junket king, the centre of the Virginia Fontaine scandal, he of the Caribbean cruises, the only man in Canada who has wasted more taxpayer money than the heritage minister. He should have been run out of the civil service on a rail a long time ago but, despite an investigation and criminal charges, he landed a job with HRDC.

Who is the minister going to blame for that one?

Human Resources Development Canada
Oral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Brant
Ontario

Liberal

Jane Stewart Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, with specific reference to that question, I can tell the hon. member that the department contracted work to be done by a company called MaxSys under competitively tendered standing offers established by Public Works and Government Services Canada in the year 2001.

MaxSys provided the services of Paul Cochrane to conduct the human resources work. However, when a firm is contracted to supply services to the department, Public Works and Government Services Canada does ensure that the contractor personnel are security screened to the appropriate level.

Canada Customs and Revenue Agency
Oral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Liberal

David Pratt Nepean—Carleton, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the revenue minister.

I noted with interest recently that union leaders representing customs workers and MPs from the Canadian Alliance have been making allegations with respect to our border points being understaffed and security equipment going unused.

Could the Minister of National Revenue provide us with some accurate facts on this issue?

Canada Customs and Revenue Agency
Oral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Thornhill
Ontario

Liberal

Elinor Caplan Minister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, first, let me put this in context. As you would know, Mr. Speaker, the negotiating process has just begun and the fact is that some union leaders and some of their political pals are speaking out making, what I would call, intemperate and inaccurate statements.

Here are the facts. Customs security at our seaports, our airports and our land border crossings are the best that they have been in the history of our country and Canadians can have confidence. There are no staff shortages at any of our border points. We have equipment that is being rolled out and used. Since 2001 we have hired 450--

Canada Customs and Revenue Agency
Oral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

The Deputy Speaker

The member for Prince Albert.

Taxation
Oral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Brian Fitzpatrick Prince Albert, SK

Mr. Speaker, sadly, federal tax collectors are in the process, as we speak, of bankrupting junior amateur hockey teams in Saskatchewan. By treating players' room and board and $100 per month expense money as income, they are literally killing hockey dreams. At the same time they have totally ignored junior A teams in other provinces.

Why is the tax collection system discriminating against Saskatchewan amateur junior hockey?

Taxation
Oral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Thornhill
Ontario

Liberal

Elinor Caplan Minister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, the member's question is completely inaccurate in its premise.

The goal of CCRA is to ensure that Canadian tax laws are fairly applied to all Canadians from coast to coast.

I would say to him further that he knows that we are working with the Canadian Hockey Association so it can understand the Income Tax Act and how it can be fairly applied to all of its teams in a manner which will ensure that young players are eligible for the social programs and also ensure that the teams are in compliance with our tax laws.

Taxation
Oral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Brian Fitzpatrick Prince Albert, SK

Mr. Speaker, she should come out to Saskatchewan and speak to the president of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League and just say what she is saying now.

Mr. Speaker, Saskatchewan has a strong amateur junior hockey tradition, as you know. Hockey is our national sport. The winters will be very long and cold if the minister kills amateur junior hockey in rural Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan simply wants to be treated fairly and equally. What is the government doing about this shameful case of discrimination?

Taxation
Oral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

Thornhill
Ontario

Liberal

Elinor Caplan Minister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, I want to be absolutely clear that there is no discrimination. The member should be reassured that when it comes to the Income Tax Act, the Canada pension plan and the Employment Insurance Act, all Canadians are treated equally.

Further, he should be aware, and I will repeat it again, that we have been working with the Canadian Hockey Association. We want to ensure that young players are eligible for the benefits to which they are entitled and, where there are issues where the hockey teams may have difficulty, fairness provisions are in place to assist those teams.

National Identity Card
Oral Question Period

September 19th, 2003 / 11:55 a.m.

Bloc

Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral Laval Centre, QC

Mr. Speaker, testifying yesterday before the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration, the Privacy Commissioner said, speaking of the identity card, that it will not only cost an arm and a leg—an estimated $5 billion—but will also, and I quote, “inevitably reveal more information about us than is required”.

Apart from the forum entitled “Biometrics: Implications and Applications for Citizenship and immigration”, and before implementing the national identity card, what positive steps will the minister take to properly inform the public about the real issues and the foreseeable costs of implementing this card?