House of Commons Hansard #76 of the 40th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was theft.

Topics

Conservative Government
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable
Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis Minister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, I can say that the matter we are talking about is much more serious than that of withdrawing one's agreement to pair, as those on the other side of the House have done.

One thing is certain: municipalities have expectations. The UMQ was here two weeks ago and asked that money be sent because it is desperately needed. Credits are coming and will be voted on this Friday. What will they do? They will vote against it. They will block payments to municipalities. Construction work will be suspended. That is irresponsible. Shame on the Bloc Québécois.

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

June 16th, 2009 / 2:25 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, workers are sick and tired of the Prime Minister's insults. He is wrong about his “45-day work year”. We have to act now to help people, but the Prime Minister does not want to do anything until the fall.

The government's promises to self-employed workers are not reassuring because we know that the government has refused even to consider the NDP's employment insurance bill, which the House passed.

Why does the Prime Minister keep insulting people instead of acting?

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk
Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, during the 2008 election campaign, we promised self-employed workers that we would give them access to some employment insurance benefits on a voluntary basis.

We have already done a number of things for the unemployed. We are working on doing something for self-employed workers, but it is a major change.

It will take time, but we will do it.

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives put it in their program, but they did not have clue how they would get it done. That is why we did not see it in the budget.

We have seen no action, but this is no surprise from that party and a Prime Minister, who refers to an EI cheque as a big, fat cheque. That is a put-down of the people who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own.

How many times does he need to be told that fixing EI is the best way to stimulate the economy? Every dollar turns into a $1.60 in stimulation. That is why EI adopted our party's plan to fix EI, which included the self-employed fair benefits and fair access. Why will the Conservatives not take action?

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka
Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, in fact, the minister and this government have done a lot to improve EI. That is what the extra $5.5 billion in our economic action plan is all about. That is what extending EI by five weeks is all about. That is what work-sharing is all about as well.

We care about the fact that people in this economy and in our country have been hurt by the world economic downturn. That is why our economic action plan is worthy of support, so it gets to those issues. However, the member and that party do not get it because they continually vote against it.

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, out-of-work Canadians are struggling and we now are seeing that household debt is at 140% of disposable income. The Bank of Canada calls it the biggest risk to our economy.

Big banks are hoarding cash and gouging Canadians, not helping businesses create job. If the Prime Minister really wants to get our economy moving, why give banks money to hoard instead of helping Canadians who are being left behind? Will he listen to the experts and fix EI now, for this summer, not next?

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka
Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, in this case, we have a lot in our economic action plan to extend credit to small businesses, to make sure that credit is also extended to individuals who want to lease cars, for instance.

Our economic action plan gets to the fact that Canadians need help in various parts of our country and that various parts of our economy need help.

That is why it is a comprehensive plan. It is the best plan in the G7 and has been recognized as such by the International Monetary Fund. I, for one, salute our finance minister, who has done an excellent job in making sure that we are the top in the world.

Medical Isotopes
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

David McGuinty Ottawa South, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, one of the world's leading experts in nuclear medicine said, “The patient community is facing one of its greatest threats in modern times”.

Patients are in limbo; some have had their tests cancelled outright. We are now hearing that Canadians will have to undergo exploratory surgeries that would normally be unnecessary.

Every day, 5,000 Canadians need isotopes for tests and treatments. Can the minister tell us how many of those people will have access to isotopes?

Medical Isotopes
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Nunavut
Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I met with the experts on medical isotopes and the nuclear society over the weekend in Toronto. We are continuing to deal with this situation.

In fact, this morning I made an investment of $6 million for more research on Tc99 as we need to start addressing the shortage of that.

In terms of triage, each province and territory delivers health care. They are managing the situation with the alternatives that we have identified. This morning the Ottawa Hospital said that it has switched to thallium to continue to provide testing as needed.

Medical Isotopes
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

David McGuinty Ottawa South, ON

There is the problem, Mr. Speaker. Patients and their families cannot get straight answers.

The truth is that we are back to only 75% of global isotope supply, with nearly half of that production set to go offline next month. There is no evidence that Canada has access to 75% of its weekly requirement.

Let me try again. Leaving alternatives aside, could the minister tell us what percentage of isotopes required by Canadians is available this week, next week and next month?

Medical Isotopes
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Halton
Ontario

Conservative

Lisa Raitt Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, as indicated in the House yesterday, Canada has 75% of its supply of medical isotopes for this week on order. We are monitoring the situation very closely.

This morning I spoke with Belgium's minister of energy to discuss with him the reactor schedules. The Belgians have indicated that they are going to help us as best they can. I will continue on that follow-up on Thursday when I meet with the experts in Toronto.

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

John McCallum Markham—Unionville, ON

Mr. Speaker, the minister has predicted a tiny surplus for 2013-14. But that prediction no longer stands.

The extra interest charges for the $50 billion deficit will eat up most of this surplus.

Will the minister do what needs to be done and present a credible plan to Canadians, or will he admit, as most economists already have, that Canada will still be in deficit in 2013-14?

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, on page 61 of the report to Canadians, we laid out the breakdown of the deficit this year, and $22.4 billion are temporary measures. In the previous budget in January of this year, which the member opposite supported, we laid out a plan over time to get back into surplus by 2013-14. We remain on track to do that with the predictions with respect to economic growth.

I look forward to reporting in detail as usual in the fall economic statement.

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

John McCallum Markham—Unionville, ON

Mr. Speaker, the finance minister's $50 billion deficit is the biggest in Canadian history, yet he stands there and tells Canadians that in less than four years this enormous deficit will simply disappear into thin air without any plan or any remedial action by the Conservative government. Canadians, especially Ontarians, cannot possibly take the assertions of the minister at face value.

Where is his plan to bring the budget back into balance?

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

The plan, Mr. Speaker, is actually on page 61, but the member does not want to read it.

The majority of the stimulus in this year's deficit is one time spending. It ends after two years. It is use it or lose it. Some of the tax measures, like the home renovation tax credit, will end next February.