House of Commons Hansard #85 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was trade.

Topics

Rail Transportation
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Fort McMurray—Athabasca
Alberta

Conservative

Brian Jean Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, this government is already addressing concerns about rail freight. We review it through the rail freight service review. The independent panel leading the review released its interim report on October 8 and will present its final report and recommendations later in 2010.

We all know what the members of the NDP want to do. They want to close our borders and close our industry. If they had their way, that is what they would do.

This Conservative government will not do that. We will open markets to ensure Canada's economy remains strong and Canadians have jobs.

Use of Wood in Federal Buildings
Oral Questions

October 22nd, 2010 / 11:45 a.m.

Bloc

Gérard Asselin Manicouagan, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Bloc has presented an innovative and environmentally-friendly alternative in Bill C-429, which promotes the use of wood in the construction of federal buildings. The Minister of State for the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec has just returned from a tour of Italy and France, where he learned about European expertise in this area.

Did the member for Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean realize on this tour that Bill C-429 is a good measure? Will he finally support it?

Use of Wood in Federal Buildings
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable
Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, our economic action plan helped forestry communities. We invested $170 million in FPInnovations. We then invested $1 billion in black liquor and green transformation initiatives. In addition, we invested $100 million over four years for another renewable power initiative.

The forestry sector is looking for new opportunities and markets. That is what we are working on, and we are getting results. However, the Bloc again voted against all these initiatives.

Use of Wood in Federal Buildings
Oral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Bloc

Gérard Asselin Manicouagan, QC

Mr. Speaker, the president and chief executive officer of the Quebec Forest Industry Council, Guy Chevrette, said that if the government bothered to assess the environmental impact of the materials used to build federal buildings, it would realize that wood is considered to be the greenest material, in addition to being durable and easy to maintain. What is the government waiting for to promote the use of wood in the construction of federal buildings?

Use of Wood in Federal Buildings
Oral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable
Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, what is the Bloc waiting for to support promising initiatives? We have identified new markets and opportunities. Recently, in Windsor, we made an announcement about nanocrystalline cellulose, an extremely promising material. What has the Bloc Québécois been doing all this time? It has been voting against initiatives.

I challenge Bloc members to go to their ridings, talk with forestry producers and tell them that they voted against all the fine initiatives that were recently passed.

Pensions
Oral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Liberal

Judy Sgro York West, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is official. The Conservative senators have turned their backs on sick and disabled Canadians. By refusing the quick passage of Bill S-216, Conservative senators have said they care more about junk-bond holders than about the hundreds of disabled Canadians who will lose their benefits by the end of the year.

Why can the Prime Minister find hundreds of millions of dollars to buy the real estate holdings of Nortel, but cannot find just a couple of hours to pass legislation to help Nortel's former employees?

Pensions
Oral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Edmonton—Mill Woods—Beaumont
Alberta

Conservative

Mike Lake Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, it is a complex issue. It is of concern to this government. We are carefully studying this issue. We realize that there are several bills, not just one, that address this issue both in this place and the other. As with all pieces of legislation, we will carefully review these bills. We welcome any ideas that members of any party may have to offer.

Pensions
Oral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Liberal

Judy Sgro York West, ON

Mr. Speaker, all they have to do is pass the legislation, bring it in the House, and we will pass it. That will solve the problem.

Yesterday, Josée Marin and Peter Burns stood before the TV cameras and begged for the Conservative-dominated Senate to pass Bill S-216. Josée said that the bill's passage would mean the difference between her living in her home and dying in her car.

As Conservatives continue to put junk-bond holders ahead of sick workers, I wonder if the Prime Minister can tell Peter and Josée why is he prepared to throw them out onto the street?

Pensions
Oral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Edmonton—Mill Woods—Beaumont
Alberta

Conservative

Mike Lake Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, as I mentioned earlier, it is a complex issue. It is important to this government, and we are carefully studying the issue. There are many bills that have been before this House and the other house that are being considered. The hon. member's office is two floors below mine, and I would welcome her at any time to come up to my office and discuss this issue.

Pensions
Oral Questions

11:50 a.m.

NDP

Wayne Marston Hamilton East—Stoney Creek, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Ontario minister of finance joined with the Minister of Finance in endorsing New Democrats' call for an expansion of the Canada pension plan. By doing this, that minister has placed himself in the middle of a growing consensus. Considering the importance of this development to Canadian workers, will the minister advise the House of the status of discussions with other provinces in securing their support for an expansion of CPP?

Pensions
Oral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Macleod
Alberta

Conservative

Ted Menzies Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, this is a matter of joint jurisdiction between the provinces and the federal government, and I am glad that the member recognizes this. Many people do not.

We have had a broad consultation with Canadians on federally regulated pensions. We are in serious discussions with our provincial counterparts. There will be a finance ministers' meeting in December where we will hear back from the officials on their findings. After those findings are in, we will apply them in our efforts to help our seniors.

Pensions
Oral Questions

11:50 a.m.

NDP

Wayne Marston Hamilton East—Stoney Creek, ON

Mr. Speaker, as important as this increase is, it does nothing to help the nearly 300,000 Canadian seniors who are currently living in poverty. Supporting these seniors is something that is doable and right. It would cost the government about the same as the corporate tax giveaways it is giving to the banks this very year.

These are the people who built this country and they deserve better. When will the government do the right thing and increase the guaranteed income supplement to lift all seniors out of poverty?

Pensions
Oral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Calgary—Nose Hill
Alberta

Conservative

Diane Ablonczy Minister of State (Seniors)

Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his question and for his caring for seniors. He is aware, I hope, that since this government has taken office it has put over $2 billion more into the pockets of seniors through various measures such as pension income splitting, increasing the age credit, and many other measures. In addition, the OAS and GIS were raised in 2006-07. We have also put nearly half a billion dollars into housing for low-income seniors. There are many measures. The government continues, though, to look at ways to help seniors.

Taxation
Oral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Conservative

Dick Harris Cariboo—Prince George, BC

Mr. Speaker, our Conservative government delivers over and over again for Canadians. Whether it is providing solid economic leadership through Canada's economic action plan or our principled foreign policy positions, this government does what is needed and it does it right.

Further evidence of our getting things done for Canadians is today's announcement of two new bilateral agreements with Switzerland.

Can the parliamentary secretary inform the House about the two special and very important agreements that we signed with Switzerland today?

Taxation
Oral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Nepean—Carleton
Ontario

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and to the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, our government has worked hard to tackle international tax evasion.

Last year our government recovered $138 million in previously unpaid tax revenue through voluntary disclosures. Just five months into this year, our collections have been even greater than they were during the entire 12 months of last year.

This week the government announced an agreement with the Swiss government of an updated double-taxation convention that will further facilitate the exchange of tax information, assisting Canada's tax authorities in cracking down on international tax evasion.