House of Commons Hansard #166 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was atlantic.

Topics

Telecommunications
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Colin Carrie Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, the CRTC has decided to update its price cap framework. I remind the hon. member that the government will continue to put consumers first, and we always put consumers first. We have ensured that the CRTC will continue to regulate in areas where there is little competition.

Because the decision was made by the CRTC, it can be appealed within 90 days. Therefore, it would be inappropriate for me to comment at this time.

British Columbia Flood Mitigation
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Hedy Fry Vancouver Centre, BC

Mr. Speaker, British Columbians have been under flood warning all spring. The upper Fraser has flooded. Evacuation is under way. The Lower Mainland is next.

The Minister of Agriculture, who represents the region, ignored the municipalities' pleas for funding all year. Federal funding, promised only three weeks ago, was too little, too late. The government gutted the Liberal new deal for cities, which could have paid for the diking borne by cash-strapped provinces.

Will the Prime Minister commit immediately to a special fund to help these municipalities with the costs of their infrastructure rebuilding?

British Columbia Flood Mitigation
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, as I said just a few moments ago, we had a request not long ago from the province of British Columbia. It was estimating it would be about $33 million to reinforce the diking system along that area. It was also asking for assistance with dredging.

In an unprecedented move, because of the hard work of MPs from that area, the request was put together. The funds are in place and delivered. I want to congratulate the first responders and the others who are working so hard in these areas right now.

The member should get tuned in. She was not even on the file while our members were out there checking it out and helping people at the local level.

Senate Tenure Legislation
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Scott Reid Lanark—Frontenac—Lennox and Addington, ON

Mr. Speaker, a year ago our government introduced Bill S-4, which would limit the terms of senators to eight years. All Canadians, except Liberal senators, apparently agree that the current 45 year maximum term for unelected senators is just not acceptable.

Yesterday, however, Liberal senators decided to hold Bill S-4 hostage, unless and until the government referred the bill to the Supreme Court, even though Canada's top constitutional experts and a previous Senate committee studying the issue have already deemed Bill S-4 to be fully constitutional.

Could the Minister for Democratic Reform update the House on this new development?

Senate Tenure Legislation
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

York—Simcoe
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, let me be very clear, the Senate has no constitutional authority to refer a bill to the Supreme Court of Canada. In fact, it is exceeding its constitutional authority by refusing to deal with government business in this fashion.

The Liberal Red Chamber has an obligation to do its job and consider government business. The actions of unelected, unaccountable Liberal senators represents a dangerous grasp for power that is clearly extra-constitutional.

This alarming development must be halted. I hope the Liberal leader will instruct his senators to abandon this dangerous attack on Canada's Constitution and tell them to do their job of dealing with legislation.

Human Resources and Skills Development
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

NDP

Catherine Bell Vancouver Island North, BC

Mr. Speaker, the Conservative government created a backlog when it changed the levels at which Human Resources and Skills Development Canada contracts for job creation programs need to be signed by the minister.

Projects that have a short turnaround for approval, such as the completion of the North Coast Trail in my riding, have been waiting for weeks instead of days. This project should be up and running now.

When will the minister clean up his desk and sign a JCP so we can complete the North Coast Trail?

Human Resources and Skills Development
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Medicine Hat
Alberta

Conservative

Monte Solberg Minister of Human Resources and Social Development

Mr. Speaker, I appreciate her concern with respect to these important projects. I can assure the member that my department is working very hard to ensure that all of these very worthy groups and the causes they represent get their funding and get it very quickly.

Human Resources and Skills Development
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

NDP

Catherine Bell Vancouver Island North, BC

Mr. Speaker, why did the minister not take into consideration the backlog when he made his signing authority changes? This is becoming just like the summer jobs program debacle and the passport fiasco, and there is more.

Now the minister has instituted a five day waiting period from the time he approves job funding to when the project gets notified. Why? So he can put forward a press release.

Why is the minister more interested in media creation than job creation? Why does he make us wait?

Human Resources and Skills Development
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Medicine Hat
Alberta

Conservative

Monte Solberg Minister of Human Resources and Social Development

Mr. Speaker, the member mentions job creation. I point to the fact that we have the lowest unemployment in our country in 33 years, thanks to the leadership of the Minister of Finance. I am very proud of that record.

I also point out that it is important to do these things correctly. We do not want to rush money out the door without proper accountability. That is the old Liberal way. We saw it in the sponsorship scandal. We do not want to go there.

Presence in Gallery
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

I would like to draw the attention of hon. members the presence in the gallery of the Hon. James W.L. Kinobe, Minister of State for Youth and Children Affairs, for the Republic of Uganda.

Presence in Gallery
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear!

Business of the House
Oral Questions

June 7th, 2007 / 3 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

It being Thursday, I believe the hon. member for Wascana has a question. The hon. member for Wascana.

Business of the House
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Wascana, SK

Mr. Speaker, I wonder if the government House leader would inform us of what would be on his agenda for government business through to the end of next week. I wonder if he could also in his answer indicate what he considers to be the government's major priorities to be completed before the normal summer recess on June 22. Finally, l wonder if the minister could indicate the government's intention to act or not under Standing Order 27(1) next week.

Business of the House
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

York—Simcoe
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, today we will be continuing with the business of supply.

Tomorrow we hope to conclude third reading of Bill C-52. In answer to the question on priorities, I would point out that Bill C-52, the budget implement bill, is the number one priority of this government. We can talk about other priorities after we see an indication that it will be heading for royal assent. If we do not have it, it will result in the loss of $4.3 billion in 2006-07 year end measures which include: $1.5 billion for the Canada ecotrust for the provinces; $600 million for patient wait times guarantees; $400 million for Canada Health Infoway; $200 million for protection of endangered species; $30 million for the Great Bear rain forest; $600 million for labour market agreements for the provinces; $30 million for the Rick Hansen Foundation; $100 million in aid for Afghanistan; $100 million to Genome Canada; and so on. It is a long list of important priorities financing that will be lost if the bill is not passed by the end of this session in June. That is obviously our number one priority.

Next week will be getting things done for all of us week when we consider a number of bills that are in their final stages of the legislative process.

The following bills will be placed under Government Orders for debate: Bill C-11, An Act to amend the Canada Transportation Act and the Railway Safety Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts, which the Senate reported with amendments and which is now back before the House to receive the approval of the members, and Bill C-23, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (criminal procedure, language of the accused, sentencing and other amendments).

We are awaiting the Senate's report with amendments on Bill C-31, An Act to amend the Canada Elections Act and the Public Service Employment Act.

Bill C-33, An Act to amend the Income Tax Act, including amendments in relation to foreign investment entities and non-resident trusts, and to provide for the bijural expression of the provisions of that Act, Bill C-42, An Act to amend the Quarantine Act and Bill C-47, An Act respecting the protection of marks related to the Olympic Games and the Paralympic Games and protection against certain misleading business associations and making a related amendment to the Trade-marks Act, will probably be passed by the House at third reading.

Discussions have taken place with the opposition parties, and there may be consent to fast-track some or all of the following bills: Bill C-59, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (unauthorized recording of a movie), Bill S-6, An Act to amend the First Nations Land Management Act and Bill C-51, An Act to give effect to the Nunavik Inuit Land Claims Agreement and to make a consequential amendment to another Act.

There is also a possibility of quick passage of a new bill entitled “An act to amend the Geneva Conventions Act, an act to incorporate the Canadian Red Cross Society and the Trademarks Act”, which appears on today's notice paper.

There are a number of other bills I am still hoping we could get included in getting things done for all of us week, provided that they get reported back from committee, in particular, Bill C-6 aeronautics; Bill C-27 dangerous offenders; Bill C-32 impaired driving; and Bill C-44, the bill to grant first nations people the human rights that every other Canadian enjoys. First nations people expect the House to get things done for them as well, so I urge the aboriginal affairs committee to stop delaying Bill C-44 and report it back to the House early next week. It is a priority for this government.

Oral Questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Central Nova
Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. In a question from the member for Bourassa during question period, in response I referenced a report being received from Afghanistan that would be tabled. I meant to say it would be received by the Canadian government.