House of Commons Hansard #119 of the 40th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was drugs.

Topics

Tax Harmonization
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

NDP

Paul Dewar Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Conservative government is set to ask the House to approve its billions of dollars in bribes to the provinces so they can hit Canadians with the HST. We have learned that should the opposition parties vote down this tax grab, the government will not reintroduce it. Other opposition parties might still be iffy about how they will vote, but I am looking to get confirmation from the government.

If its motion fails, will it drop its plan to hike taxes on families? Will it commit not to reintroduce the HST tax grab if that fails in a vote in Parliament? Yes or no?

Tax Harmonization
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, let me say very directly that we have no such plan to raise taxes arbitrarily on Canadian families. Our government's first priority has been to cut taxes for working families.

We cut the GST from 7% to 6% and then from 6% to 5%, and when we needed help to do that, when Canadian families needed a break on paying high taxes, could they count on the support of the NDP? No. The NDP members stood up and said they did not want a 5% GST. They wanted it to be 7%. They wanted to keep taxes high.

It is this government that fought to cut taxes and keep them low for Canadian families.

Nortel
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

Alexandra Mendes Brossard—La Prairie, QC

Mr. Speaker, we condemn the decision by Nortel executives to give themselves bonuses of several million dollars while employees are not entitled to severance pay, pensions or disability benefits.

Now that the Conservatives have taken steps for Nortel to be sold to Avaya, will they ensure that the Canadian employees, especially those who are disabled, are treated fairly and will receive the benefits for which they have worked so hard?

Nortel
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Edmonton—Mill Woods—Beaumont
Alberta

Conservative

Mike Lake Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, we share the outrage of the hon. member at the news yesterday. It is incomprehensible that the executives at Nortel would choose to give themselves bonuses, court-authorized or not, at a time when the rest of the country is tightening its belt.

On the issue of pensions, our Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance has travelled the country over the course of the summer to hear from Canadians on this issue. Coming out of those consultations, we introduced measures to help protect pensioners by requiring companies to fully fund pension benefits on plan termination, make pensions more stable, give pensioners more negotiating powers and modernize the investment rules of pensions.

Nortel
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

Alexandra Mendes Brossard—La Prairie, QC

Mr. Speaker, less than a month ago, those same employees from Nortel stood on the front lawn of Parliament Hill and asked the government to help them retrieve their hard-earned pensions and severance packages. The Conservatives were remarkable for their silence. We now hear that current Nortel senior executives have just rewarded themselves another round of huge bonuses.

When will the government finally stand up for rank and file Nortel employees?

Nortel
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Edmonton—Mill Woods—Beaumont
Alberta

Conservative

Mike Lake Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, as I mentioned, of course we are outraged by the news that came out yesterday.

But again, on the subject of pensions, we have already completed cross-Canada consultations on federally regulated pensions. We are working with the provinces to set up a federal-provincial research working group on retirement income, and we have already convened a national summit of provincial and territorial finance ministers to discuss the group's findings in December.

What is remarkable is that the member for Markham—Unionville said just a few short weeks ago, “The Liberals don't actually have a policy on pension reform”.

Employment
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

Marcel Proulx Hull—Aylmer, QC

Mr. Speaker, as the holidays approach, hundreds of people do not share the holiday spirit. Jobs continue to disappear by the hundreds. Yesterday it was Bombardier and Rogers that announced 715 and 900 layoffs respectively. The Conservatives have ignored our calls to introduce an aerospace strategy. They are allowing our technological giants to slip into foreign hands.

How high does the unemployment rate have to be before they decide to do something about it?

Employment
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Edmonton—Mill Woods—Beaumont
Alberta

Conservative

Mike Lake Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, of course, we do understand that it has been a difficult year for the aerospace industry in these global economic circumstances, as we have seen a tightening of budgets, particularly budgets for executive business jets. That has had an impact, obviously, on Bombardier.

That said, our government is actively working with and committed to supporting Canada's aerospace industry. In fact, we have recently made a $350 million investment in Bombardier Aerospace for its CSeries program. We have also invested hundreds of millions of dollars in the strategic aerospace defence initiative, in fact just a couple of months ago, announcing a $200 increased investment in that program.

Museums
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Liberal

Marcel Proulx Hull—Aylmer, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is not just the unemployed who are concerned about the fast approaching holidays. Workers involved in labour disputes are worried as well.

Such is the case for employees of the Museum of Civilization and the War Museum, here in the national capital region.

Will the minister wake up and impose arbitration in order to resolve this dispute once and for all?

Museums
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Souris—Moose Mountain
Saskatchewan

Conservative

Ed Komarnicki Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and to the Minister of Labour

Mr. Speaker, a mediator has been working with the parties from before the strike began, and we are continuing to work with them and encouraging them to come to the table to resolve this issue. Of course, if both parties agree, the minister can appoint an arbiter, but they both have to come to that agreement.

The Environment
Oral Questions

November 27th, 2009 / 11:35 a.m.

Bloc

Serge Cardin Sherbrooke, QC

Mr. Speaker, Canada is discrediting itself, not only on the international stage, where there are calls to have Canada expelled from the Commonwealth, but also here at home, where 3,000 Canadian scientists are calling on the government to negotiate an agreement that will rapidly and adequately address climate change.

What will it take for the government to announce a greenhouse gas reduction plan that is credible and produces results?

The Environment
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Langley
B.C.

Conservative

Mark Warawa Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, the fact is Canada is committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions 20% by 2020. That is one of the toughest targets in the world. The fact is President Obama just announced a conditional target of a 17% reduction by 2020 using the 2005 levels. That target is virtually identical to this government's target.

Why do opposition members want Canada to diverge from a North American target and instead choose a job-killing European target? Canada will not abandon the North American harmonized approach. We will not jeopardize Canadian jobs or the Canadian economy.

The Environment
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Bloc

Serge Cardin Sherbrooke, QC

Mr. Speaker, Quebec could be the first to pay for this government's inaction, since it exports the most to Europe.

Does the government realize that if Europe follows through on its carbon tax threats for delinquent countries, like Canada, Quebec exports will be the first to be hit hard?

The Environment
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Langley
B.C.

Conservative

Mark Warawa Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, the government has been very clear. Canada does want an international binding agreement on climate change that includes all the major emitters. One hundred and ninety-two countries will be at the negotiating table.

This government will ensure that any treaty will include Canada's economic, geographic and industrial realities. We will not sign a deal that would be bad for Canada. We will continue to work on behalf of all Canadians.

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Bloc

Josée Beaudin Saint-Lambert, QC

Mr. Speaker, once again, the government is trying to force workers in Quebec to swallow an insult. The contribution rate that self-employed workers in Quebec will pay for benefits under Bill C-56 is totally disproportionate. According to the human resources department's own estimates, Quebeckers will pay too much for the services they receive.

Will the government admit the injustice that is being done to self-employed workers in Quebec, who are going to have to subsidize other workers?