House of Commons Hansard #33 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was grain.

Topics

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Hoang Mai Brossard—La Prairie, QC

Mr. Speaker, Canadians who have not received any income or had any assets in the United States for years are suddenly being threatened with enormous fines for not filing their tax returns. Consider the case of a woman who has been living and working in Canada since 1968 who might have to pay $70,000. Several of the Canadians in question are seniors and their retirement incomes are now in jeopardy.

Will the government negotiate a tax return amnesty for these Canadian citizens?

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, as I said a moment ago to the member opposite, it is the right of Canada to impose tax obligations on our citizens. It is the right of the United States to do the same thing. These are people who are American citizens and they choose to maintain their American citizenship. If they do that, they are subject to some rules.

The difficulty is, as the member has mentioned, many of these individuals have not lived in the United States, have not filed in the United States, have not earned any income in the United States, and were unaware of their obligation. It is for those people that we are trying to get some co-operation, leniency quite frankly, with respect to penalties from the American authorities. As I said a moment ago, we are making some progress.

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Kirsty Duncan Etobicoke North, ON

Mr. Speaker, the prestigious journal Nature announced the discovery of an Arctic ozone hole 18 days ago. Journalists sought interviews with the Environment Canada co-author on that paper, Dr. Tarasick. An email from the environment minister's spokesperson told a well-respected science reporter that an interview could not be granted.

Will the government finally let Dr. Tarasick speak freely and ensure that scientists are never muzzled again?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North
Alberta

Conservative

Michelle Rempel Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, as I have said many times in the House, our government is very proud of the scientists at Environment Canada and the work they do.

Our government has taken concrete action over and over again to protect Canada's environment. We have protected record amounts of parkland. We have assessed hundreds of new and existing substances for potential risks to human health through chemical management. We have developed a new air quality management system to reduce the costs of the environment.

We are focused on delivering tangible results, including the area of ozone management.

Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Mark Eyking Sydney—Victoria, NS

Mr. Speaker, the House is well aware of the cuts the government has made to Atlantic Canada: first search and rescue, second Service Canada, third DFO and now ACOA. The shocking news is even worse. ACOA has become a dumping ground for a number of failed Conservative candidates and to make room for this bunch, it is firing hard-working employees at ACOA.

Why the cushy jobs for failed Conservative candidates and pink slips for hard-working maritimers?

Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Madawaska—Restigouche
New Brunswick

Conservative

Bernard Valcourt Minister of State (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency) (La Francophonie)

Mr. Speaker, I would have thought the hon. member would know better. ACOA is not—

Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Andrew Scheer

Order, please. The member for Sydney—Victoria has asked a question and the House wants to hear the answer.

The hon. minister of state.

Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Bernard Valcourt Madawaska—Restigouche, NB

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member should know that ACOA has in no way taken part in the hiring of any persons other than ACOA employees. I want to reiterate that the positions that have been eliminated will not affect the level of services to Atlantic Canadians from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency. Do I need—

Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Andrew Scheer

Unfortunately, the minister is out of time.

The hon. member for Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie.

G8 Summit
Oral Questions

October 20th, 2011 / 2:55 p.m.

NDP

Alexandre Boulerice Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the President of Treasury Board has quite the sense of humour. Today, he talked about open government. He was very open with the G8 funds—he turned on the taps for the projects of his friends, the mayor of Huntsville and the hotel manager. Unfortunately, as is often the case with the Conservative government, there is a double standard. It was not as open during the Auditor General's investigation.

He is clearly not forthcoming with the public when he refuses to explain himself. But now, with these announcements, will he finally post the documents he kept from us on the Open Government website, www.open.gc.ca?

G8 Summit
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the member opposite speaks about the sense of humour of the President of the Treasury Board. That is rather interesting.

Infrastructure Canada co-operated fully with the auditor general. The auditor general did a thorough review of this issue. She made a number of observations and recommendations, which this government completely accepted, on how we could be even more open and more transparent to the House of Commons.

G8 Summit
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, the government has a credibility problem. Asking a Muskoka maverick to sell open government is like asking Homer Simpson to promote nuclear safety. It is now 133 days since he went AWOL from accountability and it is contagious. We now know he runs from the media when he does presentations.

What part of openness includes hiding documents from the auditor general or running a slush fund from a BlackBerry? When will the government get open with the Canadian people and hold this rogue minister accountable?

G8 Summit
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, we approved some 23,000 infrastructure programs in every corner of the country. We gave every province its full per capita share. We worked with NDP, Liberal and Conservative governments from coast to coast to coast. We were able to deliver a lot of new jobs. In doing so, on 32 of those 23,000 projects, the auditor general levelled some serious observations. We fully accepted those observations, and we will do an even better job next time.

International Co-operation
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Conservative

Nina Grewal Fleetwood—Port Kells, BC

Mr. Speaker, this summer the world faced the worst humanitarian crisis 60 years. In East Africa, 30 million people are impacted by conflict, drought and famine. The government has been responding to help meet the needs of the victims and refugees.

The Minister of International Co-operation travelled to the region and witnessed the tragic effects of this crisis. Could the minister please update the House on the government's response to this crisis?