House of Commons Hansard #80 of the 40th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was colombia.

Topics

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Bernard Bigras Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Mr. Speaker, this government's recognition of the Quebec nation was meaningless. Conservatives and Liberals alike feel that, sure, Quebec can have a presence on the international scene, as long as it keeps its mouth shut. Quebec is welcome to attend the Copenhagen climate change conference, but Ottawa has warned Quebec that Canada will speak with a single voice, just like at UNESCO.

How is anyone supposed to believe that the government recognizes the Quebec nation when it refuses to allow the nation to speak up at international venues about issues that affect it directly?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North
Alberta

Conservative

Jim Prentice Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, that is not the case. I met with Premier Charest. Our government promotes federal-provincial collaboration, but Canada will speak with one voice. We will fight climate change without compromising our economic recovery. We will target all greenhouse gas emitters. When it comes to dealing with this issue, we will not just sit on the sidelines like the Bloc.

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Alexandra Mendes Brossard—La Prairie, QC

Mr. Speaker, on the subject of employment insurance, the Conservatives seem to be on the brink of a death bed conversion. Under the previous Liberal government, the employment insurance premium rate was reduced 12 times consecutively. Just last July, the Prime Minister was calling the idea of increasing EI rates stupid.

So, what does he call the Minister of Finance's decision to raise premiums?

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Jonquière—Alma
Québec

Conservative

Jean-Pierre Blackburn Minister of National Revenue and Minister of State (Agriculture)

Mr. Speaker, once again, I would like to point out we indicated clearly this morning that premiums would not be increased in 2009, or 2010. They will remain unchanged for all workers.

The question that is worth asking, though, is this. Why did the Liberals abandon the unemployed when, at the end of June, they were prepared to sit on a committee to suggest measures to help them? They abandoned them, not us. Today we are in fact proposing help to long-tenured workers so that they may extend their employment insurance by 5 to 20 weeks.

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Alexandra Mendes Brossard—La Prairie, QC

Mr. Speaker, this government heard none of our proposals. Employment insurance is a total mess. The Minister of Finance tells us that EI premiums will increase. The Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development, however, would have us believe that the changes she says she wants to make will not raise premiums.

Is it because the Minister of Finance had already undertaken to raise them that she could appear today to be so generous?

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Jonquière—Alma
Québec

Conservative

Jean-Pierre Blackburn Minister of National Revenue and Minister of State (Agriculture)

Mr. Speaker, allow me once again to point out all the measures we have put in place in recent months to help workers.

First, we extended the EI period by five weeks. Then we helped companies and employees by extending the job-sharing period from 38 to 52 weeks. Today we are announcing other measures to help long-tenured workers, those who work in mining, the manufacturing, automobile and forestry sectors, among others, those who have paid premiums for years. We want to help them by giving them an additional 5 to 20 weeks.

Will the opposition support us in this measure?

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Libby Davies Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, it is said there are two certainties in life: death and taxes. The finance minister wants to hit both with his HST scheme, and the B.C. Liberals have foolishly signed on. Now British Columbians will have to pay 7% more for essentials such as food, haircuts, vitamins, and even funerals.

Why is the Conservative government hellbent on raising taxes at a time when many British Columbians are struggling to pay their bills every day? Why are the Conservatives foisting this tax on the people of British Columbia?

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the decision by any particular province of whether or not to harmonize is a decision for that provincial government to make. It is not a decision made by the federal government.

The proposal with respect to harmonization has been in the budgets repeatedly. Years ago, under the Liberal government, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and other provinces chose to harmonize. Some additional provinces are now making that decision. It is a decision for them to make.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Chris Charlton Hamilton Mountain, ON

Mr. Speaker, the finance minister wants people to believe that he had nothing to do with raising their taxes and yet he offered the McGuinty Liberals in Ontario $4.3 billion if they harmonized their sales tax. That bribe worked and Ontario families will now be paying 8% more on vitamins, transit tickets, power bills and, yes, even funerals.

Increasing the tax burden on hard-working families is simply the wrong approach. Will the finance minister stop playing Ontarians for fools and end this Liberal-Conservative tax grab?

Taxation
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

As I said, Mr. Speaker, the same proposal is there for all of the provinces that have not yet harmonized and that is their decision.

I say to the member opposite it is passing strange that she is arguing about tax reductions. Her party is the party that voted against reducing the GST, which we have reduced twice since we took office.

This is a party that reduces taxes. That is the party that raises taxes.

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Conservative

Cathy McLeod Kamloops—Thompson—Cariboo, BC

Mr. Speaker, while the leader of the Liberal Party continues to put his personal aspirations ahead of Canadians with talk of an unwanted election, our Conservative government is working to deliver results for Canadians hit hardest by the global recession. Many of these workers are in my riding of Kamloops—Thompson—Cariboo.

Could the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development tell us what our government is doing for those workers?

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk
Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, our Conservative government is proposing additional support to workers who have paid EI premiums for years while they look for jobs in our recovering economy.

We intend to table legislation that will provide up to 20 weeks of additional EI regular benefits to unemployed long-tenured workers because it is the fair and right thing to do. By contrast, the Liberals would continue to push the irresponsible and very expensive 45-day work year. That is not for us.

Search and Rescue
Oral Questions

September 14th, 2009 / 3 p.m.

Liberal

Siobhan Coady St. John's South—Mount Pearl, NL

Mr. Speaker, the people of Newfoundland and Labrador today are reeling from another tragedy at sea. As rescue efforts continue for one missing crew member, questions are again being asked about the adequate availability of search and rescue service.

I ask the minister responsible for search and rescue, given this most recent tragedy off our coast, will the minister now do a total review of search and rescue service in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador?

Search and Rescue
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Central Nova
Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay Minister of National Defence and Minister for the Atlantic Gateway

Mr. Speaker, like the member opposite and, I am sure, all members of the House, our thoughts and prayers are with the families of those affected by the loss, the ongoing search and those affected by the sinking of the Sea Gypsy.

We monitor regularly conditions with respect to search and rescue. This particular issue around the placement of search and rescue assets has been one that has required a great deal of attention.

I assure the member opposite that one Hercules aircraft is on standby in Sydney now. We continue to work with the Coast Guard with respect to this particular situation. I assure the member opposite that we will--

Search and Rescue
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Conservative

The Deputy Speaker Andrew Scheer

The hon. member for Trois-Rivières.