House of Commons Hansard #134 of the 38th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was food.

Topics

Government Aircraft
Oral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Conservative

Bradley Trost Saskatoon—Humboldt, SK

Mr. Speaker, in the year 2004-05, I spent $66,577 for the entirety of my air travel. This includes all my flights to Saskatoon and across the country. However, the finance minister spent $67,100 on one flight to his constituency in Regina. That is $523 more than for my entire year's travel.

Why does it cost so much more to fly to Regina than to Saskatoon?

Government Aircraft
Oral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Toronto Centre
Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, we have been through this In the House all week. It is very clear. Hon. members can pick out this or pick out that. The fact of the matter is the facts on which many of the cases they referred to are erroneous. I have given examples where previous ministerial travel has not been properly accounted for when it was done.

I can assure members of the House that when these flights are approved travel, they are within the guidelines. They are for the necessity of the Government of Canada. The Minister of Finance is one of the hardest working ministers in our government and has produced tremendous benefits for the people of Canada. He deserves our credit for what he is doing, not—

Government Aircraft
Oral Questions

11:40 a.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Oxford.

Veterans Affairs
Oral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Conservative

Dave MacKenzie Oxford, ON

Mr. Speaker, despite all the information we already have on agent orange, including the Department of National Defence's own documents, the government's response to the situation has been three fact-finding task forces with no deadline and now no coordinator.

People are sick. People are dying. They do not have time to wait. Will the Minister of National Defence tell this House who will replace Mr. Vaughn Blaney?

Veterans Affairs
Oral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Toronto Centre
Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member's question gives me an opportunity to thank Mr. Blaney on behalf of members of the House for having been willing to take on this task. He did it with distinction. He is a man with a great distinctive career. For health reasons he has had to withdraw. We wish him well.

I wish I could tell the hon. member that I have found a replacement for him. I have not yet, but I can promise him that I and the Deputy Prime Minister, the Minister for Veterans Affairs, the Minister of Health and all of us involved in this file are working to make sure we have someone who can help coordinate this work and make sure that Canadians who feel affected by this have a chance to tell—

Veterans Affairs
Oral Questions

11:40 a.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Honoré-Mercier.

Summit of the Americas
Oral Questions

October 7th, 2005 / 11:40 a.m.

Liberal

Pablo Rodriguez Honoré-Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, the 4th Summit of the Americas will be held in Mar del Plata, Argentina on November 4 and 5. This summit brings together 34 democratically elected heads of state and government of the Americas in order to identify the main regional issues and define a joint plan to improve the quality of life of people living in the Americas.

This is an extremely important event although, currently, it receives little media coverage.

I want the Government of Canada to explain what are Canada's primary objectives for this important summit?

Summit of the Americas
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Papineau
Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the 4th Summit of the Americas is a wonderful opportunity for Canada.

We will work with our partners in the region to promote democracy, equality and prosperity in our hemisphere. We want to put emphasis on our best practices on good governance, the Free Trade Area of the Americas, democracy in Haiti, sustainable development, aboriginal issues, contributions to civil society and public-private partnerships for development.

This is an excellent opportunity for Canada to promote these important values.

Veterans Affairs
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

NDP

Pat Martin Winnipeg Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, the government insists on paying Dingwall severance, yet it denies any benefits whatsoever to 14,000 veterans who were deemed never to have served just because they did not fill out their discharge papers by the deadline. These veterans answered the call just like anybody else, but by order in council their service records were erased.

This is the year of the veteran. Would the Minister of National Defence please tell us that he will have the order in council reversed and reinstate the benefit for these 14,000 surviving veterans or their spouses? They did in fact serve and we cannot erase a person's service record by order in council.

Veterans Affairs
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Mississauga East—Cooksville
Ontario

Liberal

Albina Guarnieri Minister of Veterans Affairs

Mr. Speaker, in the year of the veteran, of course we want to honour all those who served honourably in the second world war. I have asked my department officials to consult with veterans organizations. I am working closely with DND to excavate the facts and dig up the truth. If there are any individuals who have been misclassified, we will do justice.

Public Service of Canada
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

NDP

Ed Broadbent Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister for Democratic Renewal.

The head of the Public Service Commission revealed yesterday that 35 former Liberal staffers have received preferred, non-competitive access to well paying public sector jobs.

This continuation of cronyism undermines competitiveness and objectivity in the public service. It is not allowed in Britain. It should not be allowed in Canada. What is the minister doing to put an end to this undemocratic practice?

Public Service of Canada
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Markham—Unionville
Ontario

Liberal

John McCallum Minister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, the first thing I would say is that this policy has existed since 1967 with royal assent of the Public Service Employment Act. Section 39 of the Public Service Employment Act provides certain persons working in ministers' offices with a limited entitlement to be appointed without competition to positions in the public service for which they are qualified.

This is a practice which has existed since 1967 and applies to a very limited number of people, who must be qualified.

Agriculture
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Conservative

Diane Finley Haldimand—Norfolk, ON

Mr. Speaker, for too long the Liberal government has been ignoring Canadian grain producers.

Bill C-40, which became law on May 19 of this year, legislated an independent and comprehensive review of the Canada Grain Act to be completed within one year of the bill's passing.

Would the Minister of Agriculture please inform the House what action, if any, he has taken to conduct this desperately needed review of the Canada Grain Act?

Agriculture
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Malpeque
P.E.I.

Liberal

Wayne Easter Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food (Rural Development)

Mr. Speaker, the fact is it was the governing party that suggested there be a review of the Canadian Grain Commission when we were doing Bill C-40. The ministers and others have been in discussion with the industry to see what is the best way to proceed and that will happen in due course.

We are doing our job, as we committed ourselves to do when we discussed Bill C-40.

Agriculture
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Conservative

Diane Finley Haldimand—Norfolk, ON

Mr. Speaker, that is a long-winded way of saying the government has done nothing on the amendment I put forward.

Just to prove how much the Liberals do not care about Canada's grain industry, first Estey and Kroeger were ignored, then a 2002 industry review panel was ignored, and now the Liberal government is actually ignoring its own legislation.

The Canadian grain industry needs results, not empty rhetoric and not more reports gathering dust. With the government's dismal track record, what assurances will the minister give us that he will take concrete action to overhaul and reform the Canadian Grain Commission?