House of Commons Hansard #60 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was quebec.

Topics

Oil and Gas Sector
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Geoff Regan Halifax West, NS

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the minister was advised to read section 167 of the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Resources Accord Implementation Act. He has obviously failed to do his homework.

Maybe he can scan section 162 of the accord implementation act for Newfoundland and Labrador. This provision is also clear. Absolute liability is limited to $30 million on the east coast where deep water drilling is currently under way.

Why will the minister not protect Canadian taxpayers and ensure oil companies are 100% liable in the case of an offshore disaster?

Oil and Gas Sector
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable
Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, it is good to read the regulation, but it is good to understand it too, and I am not sure that my colleague does.

What I said yesterday, indeed there is an absolute liability, but there is an unlimited civil liability, so he has to stop frightening Canadians with that.

We enforce world-class standards. Let me be clear that Canadian regulators will not allow any offshore activity unless they are convinced that the environment and the safety of workers will be protected.

Veterans Affairs
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Rob Oliphant Don Valley West, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Conservative government talks big on defence, but refuses to support the people who have actually defended us. This minister, the first part-time veterans minister in half a century, has not offered a single new program, benefit or idea since taking this job.

Now, even his own senior adviser, the Veterans Ombudsman, is heaping criticism on the half-time minister. Should Colonel Stogran be worried about keeping his own job, like everyone else who has been critical of this government?

Veterans Affairs
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Jonquière—Alma
Québec

Conservative

Jean-Pierre Blackburn Minister of Veterans Affairs and Minister of State (Agriculture)

Mr. Speaker, of course we are taking Mr. Stogran's recommendations and comments very seriously. I also want to remind that party that since coming to power, we have invested over $2 billion in various programs to help and provide services to our veterans. Naturally, we care deeply about the honour of those who defend our country and ensure peace and freedom. That is why we support them.

Veterans Affairs
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Rob Oliphant Don Valley West, ON

Mr. Speaker, every new dollar that has been spent on Veterans Affairs has been legislated and has been required. Nothing is new. Colonel Stogran has been travelling the country listening to veterans. He knows that despite the rhetoric, this Conservative government is neither willing nor able to effectively help our soldiers when they come home.

Programs, care, and treatment are denied the very people who put their lives on the line for us. When will this part-time Minister of Veterans Affairs take the advice of his own ombudsman?

Veterans Affairs
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Jonquière—Alma
Québec

Conservative

Jean-Pierre Blackburn Minister of Veterans Affairs and Minister of State (Agriculture)

Mr. Speaker, I would like to remind the member that the Liberals refused to deal with the agent orange issue, but our government took action.

First, we made ex gratia payments of $20,000 to veterans affected by agent orange. Second, we restored benefits for allied veterans, benefits that the Liberals eliminated. Third, we doubled the number of clinics for veterans affected by post-traumatic stress disorder.

We implemented those three measures since coming to power because we want to help our veterans.

Citizenship and Immigration
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Nina Grewal Fleetwood—Port Kells, BC

Mr. Speaker, thousands of people are obtaining Canadian citizenship fraudulently, by lying about how much time they have spent in Canada.

The Globe and Mail found 300 people claiming to live at the same address in Mississauga and Radio-Canada exposed a similar scheme going on in Quebec.

Will the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration tell us what the government is doing to crack down on those who obtain their Canadian citizenship illegally, even though they live permanently abroad?

Citizenship and Immigration
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Calgary Southeast
Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney Minister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for her question and her hard work on these issues.

It is true that we see many very troubling criminal investigations into citizenship fraud, sometimes hundreds of people applying for citizenship registered at the same false address.

We are taking action on this to preserve and protect the value and integrity of Canadian citizenship. We will be regulating citizenship consultants. We will be clarifying that residency in Canada requires actual physical presence here, rather than just a post box. We will be increasing penalties for citizenship fraud to $100,000 or five years in jail, and we will be streamlining the process to revoke citizenship from those who obtained it fraudulently.

National Defence
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Jack Harris St. John's East, NL

Mr. Speaker, the government is rushing into a multibillion dollar fighter jet procurement, just after modernizing the fleet. It is forging ahead with what amounts to a sole source contract, cutting out competitors, and sidetracking a transparent bidding process that would have produced strong industrial and regional benefits, creating jobs and supporting aerospace industry in Canada.

Does the Minister of National Defence still plan to go ahead with the advanced contract award notice, and can he explain the rush and the recklessness of this deal?

National Defence
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Edmonton Centre
Alberta

Conservative

Laurie Hawn Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, the government has committed to acquiring the next generation fighter capability as part of the Canada first defence strategy. This represents a key capability in the Canadian Forces. The government has not yet made a decision. The procurement process will conform to government rules.

I can assure the member that whatever procurement process is followed, it will benefit the Canadian Forces and benefit Canadian industry.

National Defence
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair Outremont, QC

Mr. Speaker, a military contract like this one could be a lifesaver for Canada's struggling aerospace industry.

While many subcontracts for civilian aircraft are awarded internationally, military contracts are more resistant to this kind of transfer to other countries. What defies understanding is that the Conservatives are about to give a $10 billion contract to the Americans, without going to tender and with no guarantees regarding regional industrial benefits.

If the Americans can impose their ITAR rules in our factories, why can we not at least have our fair share of the pie for our own planes?

National Defence
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Edmonton Centre
Alberta

Conservative

Laurie Hawn Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, that is absolute rubbish. Whatever contract is signed is going to benefit the Canadian Forces and Canadian industry.

That is a bit rich coming from those members who did not want us to buy the C-17. The soldiers in Afghanistan who depend on it are happy. The people of Haiti whose lives we saved are happy.

Those are the same guys who did not want us to buy the Leopard tank. The Taliban may agree with that, but members of the Canadian Forces whose lives have been saved in Afghanistan are sure glad we did that.

Firearms Registry
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Maria Mourani Ahuntsic, QC

Mr. Speaker, 74% of Quebeckers and 85% of young people aged 18 to 24 believe that the firearms registry should be maintained. The Bloc Québécois is the only party to represent Quebec's interests, since the Conservatives and half the NDP want to dismantle the registry. Furthermore, we have no guarantee that all Liberal members will show up to vote.

Will the government reverse its plan to eliminate the firearms registry, a registry that saves lives?

Firearms Registry
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Provencher
Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, it is quite clear that our government is committed to the elimination of the wasteful long gun registry. We want to focus on effective measures that will actually keep crime rates down rather than criminalizing farmers and hunters in my riding, and other ridings across rural Canada.

I would invite those members of the NDP and those Liberal members who voted in favour of Bill C-391 to vote for it again to ensure that we eliminate the wasteful long gun registry.

Firearms Registry
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Maria Mourani Ahuntsic, QC

Mr. Speaker, gun control is universally supported in Quebec. The National Assembly has confirmed this on three separate occasions through unanimous votes. Police forces, public health officials, the Barreau du Québec, the families of victims of crime, women's groups and 67% of Quebeckers from the Quebec City region are calling for the registry to be maintained.

How can the Conservative members from Quebec claim to represent Quebec when they oppose the broad consensus reached on this matter?