House of Commons Hansard #5 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was budget.

Topics

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

John McCallum Markham—Unionville, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Finance said that employment insurance premiums are “one of those job-killing taxes, a direct tax on employers and employees”.

The minister knows that an EI premium is a tax, a job-killing tax. Why will he not admit what is obvious to everyone in this chamber? This is a matter of truth, honesty and character. For once, will he tell Canadians the simple truth? The government is raising their payroll taxes.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, what we have done as part of the economic stimulus is frozen EI premiums for two years. This is a very substantial benefit for employers and employees as part of the economic action plan. However, after that, as with the other stimulus items in the economic action plan, they will come to an end.

Why will they come to an end? It is because it is a time for a return to private demand to replace the public demand and the emergency demand over the two years of the economic action plan. Then we can move back to balanced budgets, avoiding anything but a temporary deficit. That is the plan, that is the budget and that is what we will do.

Manufacturing Industry
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Terence Young Oakville, ON

Mr. Speaker, our government is continuing to focus on economic growth and creating jobs in year two of Canada's economic action plan. Our plan is getting results with 135,000 jobs being maintained or created this year alone. Year two of the action plan will build on this success with $19 billion of stimulus money being pumped into Canada's economy.

Could the Minister of Finance update the House on what our government is doing to help create jobs in the important manufacturing sector?

Manufacturing Industry
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, that is an excellent question from the member for Oakville, a riding that has a lot of manufacturers, including small and medium sized manufacturers in southern Ontario. We did highlight today the fact that Canada will become a tariff-free zone for manufacturers as a result of budget 2010.

We will eliminate all job-killing tariffs on manufacturing inputs, machinery and equipment, which will make Canada the first country in the G20 to eliminate all manufacturing tariffs. As in many other ways, including fiscal management, the banking sector and the financial sector overall, Canada is leading the way in the G20.

The Environment
Oral Questions

March 9th, 2010 / 2:45 p.m.

NDP

Linda Duncan Edmonton—Strathcona, AB

Mr. Speaker, last year the government used its budget to scrap environmental reviews of infrastructure projects under the Navigable Waters Protection Act. This year, the budget hands over even more of its environmental duties to industry-friendly agencies. The National Energy Board, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission and Natural Resources Canada will now lead environmental assessments of major energy projects. It is a blatant conflict of interest.

Why is the government putting the foxes in charge of the henhouse?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North
Alberta

Conservative

Jim Prentice Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member's assertions are wrong but I would encourage her to work with us as we try to streamline and improve the environmental assessment process.

I would draw to her attention that the kinds of changes the government will be bringing forward were called for by the commissioner for environmental sustainability in 2009, the report on the smart regulator in 2005, the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment in 2007, 2008 and 2009, and the Council of the Federation and the premiers in virtually every year since 2000.

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair Outremont, QC

Mr. Speaker, this is the same Minister of the Environment who once criticized Quebec for doing too much to protect the environment.

Can he tell us who asked him to scrap the Navigable Waters Protection Act, a century-old act?

He is clearly trying to pass the responsibility for environmental assessments on to the National Energy Board, which does not have the experience or the ability to protect the environment for future generations.

Is that not his real goal, to sacrifice the environment on the altar of his energy projects?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North
Alberta

Conservative

Jim Prentice Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, the member does not accurately portray the proposed changes under discussion or that will be made.

There is no intent to transfer to the National Energy Board jurisdiction from other agencies. The intent is to streamline the regulatory process, the environmental process.

Every respected commentator in this country who has looked at this has criticized the overweight of duplicative regulatory and environmental processes in the country. They have called for streamlining to achieve environmental objectives, as well as to advance economic objectives. We will strike that balance and we will do it properly.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Francine Lalonde La Pointe-de-l'Île, QC

Mr. Speaker, when we began questioning the government about possible cases of torture of Afghan prisoners, they replied here in this House that there was absolutely no truth to the allegations.

Yet we have learned from the media that before the torture had even become public, the government had already prepared notes to justify its inaction.

How did the government have the nerve to call us friends of the Taliban for denouncing the torture, when at that very time it was trying, not to prevent the torture, but to cover it up?

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Niagara Falls
Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, that is a bunch of nonsense coming from the hon. member. We have been open and transparent. We try to be as helpful as possible. Public servants have made documents available to the committee and now we will be ably assisted by Mr. Justice Iacobucci on this. This should have the support of the hon. member.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Francine Lalonde La Pointe-de-l'Île, QC

Mr. Speaker, Canada has failed in its obligations under the Geneva conventions.

Does the minister realize that, in light of these revelations, there can be no hesitation? All documents requested by Parliament must be handed over as soon as possible, and a public inquiry must be held.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Niagara Falls
Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Again, Mr. Speaker, I can assure the hon. member and the House that all legally available documents have been made and will continue to be made available. If there are any comments, questions or confusion about this, we will be ably supported by Mr. Justice Iacobucci.

Again, this should have the support of the hon. member.

Justice
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Anita Neville Winnipeg South Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, members of the government are always quick to comment on any court judgment that does not align with their “get tough on crime” rhetoric. They always say, “You do the crime, you do the time”.

What then is the government's comment on a dangerous driver in possession of illicit drugs who gets off with no record and a $500 slap on the wrist?

Justice
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Justice
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

Order, please. The hon. Minister of Justice.