House of Commons Hansard #148 of the 38th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was liberal.

Topics

Question No. 181
Routine Proceedings

12:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier, QC

With respect to the Revenue Canada Agency’s Scientific Research and Experimental Development Program, since 2000, what were the total tax credits allowed to each of the following companies: ( a ) Magna Entertainment Corporation; ( b ) MI Developments Inc.; ( c ) Intier Automotive; ( d ) Cosma International; ( e ) Magna Donnelly; ( f ) Decoma International Inc.; ( g ) Tesma International Inc.; and ( h ) Magna Drivetrain?

Question No. 181
Routine Proceedings

12:20 p.m.

Markham—Unionville
Ontario

Liberal

John McCallum Minister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, the scientific research and experimental development, SR&ED, tax incentive program is designed to encourage research and development in Canada.

Under this program, businesses with qualifying SR&ED expenses may receive refunds, tax credits or both.

Businesses claiming the SR&ED credit are subject to scientific and financial reviews by the Canada Revenue Agency to ensure that all eligibility requirements, as set out in the Income Tax Act, are met.

Confidentiality provisions of the Income Tax Act, section 241, preclude the disclosure of taxpayer information.

Question No. 185
Routine Proceedings

November 4th, 2005 / 12:20 p.m.

Conservative

Jay Hill Prince George—Peace River, BC

What steps has the government taken to give effect to the motion adopted by the House on February 8, 2005, that called on the government to immediately drop the Canadian Agricultural Income Stabilization deposit requirement and honour the commitments it has already made to Canadian producers; if no action has been taken, what explanation can the government give to justify its decision?

Question No. 185
Routine Proceedings

12:20 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka
Ontario

Liberal

Andy Mitchell Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, in the 2005 budget, the federal government committed to replace the deposit under the Canadian agriculture income stabilization program, CAIS, with “a better means of effectively engaging producers in joint management of business risk under CAIS”. As the CAIS program is a cost shared initiative, the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food discussed the issue with his provincial and territorial counterparts in July and it was agreed in principle to replace the deposit requirement with a fee based approach in time for the 2006 program year.

The fee based approach will respect the basic program principles that producers must be actively engaged in managing their business risk and share in the cost of the program. However, the approach will not require producers to tie up large amounts of operating capital—the principal producer concern related to the deposit. Options for replacing the deposit were developed in consultation with the industry advisory groups set up to support the program and there was general acceptance of a fee based approach.

Ministers agreed in principle on a fee that would approximate the differential between the cost of borrowing funds to make a full deposit under the program and the interest that would be obtained on that deposit. The fee would be calculated at 0.45% of the historical reference margin (a measure of farm profit) that the producer chooses to protect under the program, or $4.50 for every $1000 of protection. A farm with a reference margin of $100,000 would pay $450 for full protection, a substantially lower financial commitment than setting aside $22,000 in an account to gain similar protection.

Early in 2006, producers will receive a notification of their coverage options and the related fees, as well as the deadline for application

Question No. 190
Routine Proceedings

12:20 p.m.

Conservative

Bill Casey North Nova, NS

With regard to the pilot projects and other activities undertaken by the Public Service Commission of Canada in an effort to create a national area of selection for all federal Public Service jobs: ( a ) what is the current status in designating all federal Public Service jobs as being part of the national area of selection, following the national area of selection designation for senior and executive level positions of the federal Public Service; ( b ) at what time will the Commission be in a position to include all junior, and mid-level federal Public Service positions in the national area of selection; ( c ) what is the Commission’s time frame to have 100% of the federal Public Service job postings included within the national area of selection; ( d ) what percentage of federal Public Service employment positions, as of September 1, 2005 are open to job-seekers within a designated national area of selection; ( e ) what are the specific reasons the Commission has not yet realized a national area of selection for all job-seekers in Canada wishing to work for the Government; ( f ) what are the total expenditures to date by the Commission towards the creation of the national area of selection; ( g ) is there a multi-year estimate for expenditures required to create the national area of selection; and ( h ) what is the status in the on-going development of policies and guidelines for the government-wide use of e-recruitment software?

Question No. 190
Routine Proceedings

12:20 p.m.

Jeanne-Le Ber
Québec

Liberal

Liza Frulla Minister of Canadian Heritage and Minister responsible for Status of Women

Mr. Speaker, the reply is as follows:

a) Since 2001, a national area of selection has been required for all senior officer level jobs in external recruitment. The commission has encouraged departments to use a national area of selection, whenever appropriate, for jobs in external recruitment. The commission reviewed its policy and on October 6, 2005 outlined its decision to take an incremental approach in establishing national area of selection in external recruitment.

b) The commission has decided to extend the policy requirement to use a national area of selection for all officer-level jobs in external recruitment within the National Capital Region, effective April 1, 2006. The commission will then take an incremental approach to national areas of selection. Following assessments, April 2007 is targeted for establishing national area of selection in external recruitment for all officer level job across Canada.

c) The overall goal is by December 2007, subject to the results of an impact assessment and to the availability of continued funding, to establish a national area of selection for all external advertised appointment processes for all positions across Canada.

d) In 2004-2005, about 19% of jobs open to the public have used a national area of selection, approximately 2300 jobs. For the same period, about 28% of National Capital Region jobs open to the public used a national area of selection, approximately 1300 jobs. Beginning April 1, 2006, the policy change announced on October 6, 2005 would roughly double the overall use across Canada of a national area of selection for positions open to the public—an increase from 19% to about 32%, from 2300 to approximately 3800 jobs. Regarding only the positions open to the public in the National Capital Region, the use of a national area of selection would double—an increase from 28% to about 60%(from 1300 to approximately 2900 jobs).

e) Geographic areas of selection, allowed under the current and new Public Service Employment Act, PSEA, are used to manage large volumes of applications to public service jobs open to the public. The intent is to ensure that staffing actions are in keeping with staffing values in finding qualified candidates while upholding the public trust in the wise use of public funds. The PSC’s announcement to further expand the use of national area of selection was made possible by the flexibility derived from the new PSEA and the result of the PSC’s investments to date on technological tools, with funding support from the Treasury Board, to deal with the expected increase in the volume of applications

f) Between April 1, 2001 and March 31, 2005, the PSC spent $16.5M on national area of selection. This figure includes the development of a web-based tool, public service resourcing system, the employee benefit program, research and evaluation of technological alternatives, hardware and software for operation, training of staff and system users, and evaluation of the system pilot. From April 1, 2005 to March 31, 2006, the PSC expects to spend $8.4M including maintenance on national area of selection.

g) The PSC estimates that the future expenditures required to create and maintain the national area of selection will be $13.4M. The total multi-year estimated cost to create national area of selection is therefore $38.3M. This figure includes the cost of the employee benefit plan, enhancement of the tool to address the broader range of external staffing needs, training of departmental officials, impact assessments, and evalution. Ongoing public service resourcing system maintenance costs are estimated at $5.5M per year, starting in 2007-2008.

h) The public service staffing modernization project, PSSMP, is a multi-year effort which contributes to providing Canadians, public servants and public service managers with a federal government that is a leader in staffing by providing a world-class automated tool to support a modern staffing approach. The PSSMP is divided into two streams. In the first stream, the PSC will expand the current automated screening tool, the public service resourcing system, to all PSC regions for use by departments for external staffing by the end of November 2005, and then directly to interested departments and agencies beginning in April 2006. As part of the expansion plan, PSC regions and departments will receive training on the use of the tool. The second stream of PSSMP looks at developing a long-term solution focussed on both external and internal staffing. This second stream has not yet been fully costed. Related policies and guidelines for the government-wide use of e-recruitment software will be developed in consultation with stakeholders.

Question No. 192
Routine Proceedings

12:20 p.m.

Conservative

Joy Smith Kildonan—St. Paul, MB

With regard to Bill C-60, An Act to amend the Copyright Act, does the government plan to bring forward amendments to this legislation in order to ensure that teachers, researchers and students at educational institutions continue to have access to publicly available material online?

Question No. 192
Routine Proceedings

12:20 p.m.

Vancouver Kingsway
B.C.

Liberal

David Emerson Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, the government has been asked whether it will not be seeking an amendment to Bill C-60, an act to amend the Copyright Act, that would ensure that teachers, researchers and students at educational institutions continue to have access to publicly available material online. The government will not do so as nothing in Bill C-60 changes the existing copyright treatment of this access. That being said, the government does recognize that it is an issue.

For this reason, on March 24, 2005, when the government announced in its statement on proposals for copyright reform that it would be tabling a bill to address certain priority copyright issues related to the Internet, it also indicated at the same time that the issue of the educational use of publicly available Internet material requires further public input and consideration such that it would not be addressed in the bill, but that a consultation paper would be released as soon as possible after introducing the bill.

Bill C-60, an act to amend the Copyright Act was introduced into Parliament on June 20, 2005.

The government held a consultation meeting with stakeholders in December of 2002 to discuss the educational use of Internet material and its impact on copyright. Subsequent to that meeting, in an effort to explore possible options, the government established a working group consisting of representatives of the educational and rights holder communities. The group held several meetings in 2003 and issued a report in December of 2003 outlining its conclusions and areas of common understanding regarding educational use of Internet copyright material. However, representatives from the educational sector and rights holder groups were unable to come to an agreement regarding several key issues such as how best to approach the issue of educational use (i.e., whether through an exception to copyright or through licensing arrangements), the uses to be allowed, and how the material should be identified as “publicly available”.

Question No. 205
Routine Proceedings

12:20 p.m.

NDP

Jean Crowder Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

With regard to funding by the government for the Sisters in Spirit campaign: ( a ) why has the funding been delayed; ( b ) when will the Native Women’s Association of Canada receive the funding; and ( c ) is the government still committed to delivering the funding in phases, as originally planned?

Question No. 205
Routine Proceedings

12:20 p.m.

Jeanne-Le Ber
Québec

Liberal

Liza Frulla Minister of Canadian Heritage and Minister responsible for Status of Women

Mr. Speaker, the reply is as follows:

a) The government will fund the Sisters in Spirit initiative to an amount of $5 million over 5 years. As with any funding, there is always a rigourous process to follow to ensure accountability to the public.

b) Status of Women is finalizing a contribution agreement with the Native Women's Association of Canada. Once finalized, the funding will be released in compliance with the Contribution Agreement clauses.

c) The government is committed to delivering the funding in phases and will continue to work collaboratively with the Native Women's Association of Canada to implement the Sisters in Spirit initiative.

Question No. 211
Routine Proceedings

12:20 p.m.

Liberal

Bernard Patry Pierrefonds—Dollard, QC

Is the mandate of the Patented Medicines Prices Review Board (PMPRB) to protect Canadian consumers by ensuring that prices charged by manufacturers for patented medicines are not excessive and, if so, is the PMPRB exceeding its mandate by regulating prices of patented medicines that are being sold to non-Canadians outside Canada?

Question No. 211
Routine Proceedings

12:20 p.m.

Vancouver South
B.C.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, the Patented Medicine Prices Review Board, PMPRB, is an independent, quasi-judicial, administrative agency, created in 1987 under the Patent Act.

The PMPRB is responsible for regulating the prices that patentees charge, known as the “factory-gate” price, for prescription and non-prescription patented drugs sold in Canada to wholesalers, hospitals, pharmacies and others, for human and veterinary use, to ensure that they are not excessive. The PMPRB regulates the price of each patented drug product sold in Canada including each strength of dosage form.

The PMPRB regulates the first sale of a patented drug in Canada from the manufacturer. While a manufacturer’s sale of a patented drug product to any pharmacy in Canada falls squarely within the jurisdiction of the PMPRB, the subsequent sale of the product from the pharmacy to a consumer does not. Thus the circumstances of such pharmaceutical sales (i.e. whether to a resident of Canada or a person outside Canada) as in the case of cross border drug sales is outside the PMPRB’s mandate.

Question No. 211
Routine Proceedings

12:20 p.m.

Liberal

Dominic LeBlanc Beauséjour, NB

Mr. Speaker, I ask that all remaining questions be allowed to stand.

Question No. 211
Routine Proceedings

12:20 p.m.

The Speaker

Is that agreed?

Question No. 211
Routine Proceedings

12:20 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.