House of Commons Hansard #28 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was tax.

Topics

Government Appointments
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Peterborough
Ontario

Conservative

Dean Del Mastro Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and to the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the story to which the member refers is inaccurate. The Cape Breton County Economic Development Authority is independent from government and makes its own decisions. We understand there was, in fact, a competitive selection process in this case.

As for the others, we do not comment on the staffing of ministers' offices.

I would say to the member that perhaps she could speak to her colleague from Burnaby—New Westminster. I understand that he is currently employing a failed NDP candidate in his office.

Government Appointments
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Chris Charlton Hamilton Mountain, ON

Mr. Speaker, we sure did not hear Conservatives say that crown corporations were arm's length during the Canada Post lockout.

The government has done the impossible. It has done an even worse job on patronage than the Liberals did. Some defeated candidates were appointed to the Senate, others were rewarded with government jobs, and the failed Conservative candidate in Mount Royal was hired as a ministerial adviser. This is not just old-fashioned patronage. Conservatives are keeping former and future candidates on the payroll. Why do taxpayers have to pay for their failed candidates?

Government Appointments
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Peterborough
Ontario

Conservative

Dean Del Mastro Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and to the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs

I understand, Mr. Speaker, that the member in fact once ran as a candidate and was picked up as a staff member by the leader of the Liberal Party when he was the leader of the NDP. This is common. All political parties hire partisan staff to work on partisan measures.

I would suggest to my NDP colleague across the way that if she would like to hire some good Conservative staffers, I have a list she might want to consider. I have full faith in all of them.

Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

François Lapointe Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday we learned from the Office of the Comptroller General that the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency has violated almost every rule in only two years of existence: expenditure control, contract management, use of credit cards, travel and hospitality expenses for its guests and all the rest.

Instead of helping northerners, the government is breaking all the rules of financial management.

How can the Prime Minister, who was the one who announced the creation of the agency in 2009, justify such a fiasco?

Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Nunavut
Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq Minister of Health and Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

Mr. Speaker, this is a draft audit. We take all audits very seriously. I look forward to receiving the final audit. We will address all the issues raised in the audit.

Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

François Lapointe Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, QC

Mr. Speaker, we cannot expect to get any detailed or reliable response today, but we will try again anyway.

Development of the major projects planned for the north will cost Canadian taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars, but the government is not even capable of managing a budget of $75 million for the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency.

Has the government lost complete control of northern development management?

Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Nunavut
Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq Minister of Health and Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

Mr. Speaker, I encourage the member to travel to Nunavut, the Northwest Territories and Yukon to see what is really happening on the ground with regard to development.

Again I say that this is an internal audit. It is a draft audit. I look forward to receiving the final audit. Once we have received it, we will address the issues to make improvements.

Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Dennis Bevington Western Arctic, NT

Mr. Speaker, since it was created two years ago, the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency has broken almost every rule in the book: out of control costs, contract mismanagement, improper use of credit cards and travel expenses, and the list goes on and on. This appalling record should put the Conservatives to shame.

Since the Prime Minister refuses to take the advice of his minister and the department, especially on the location of the head office, will he now stand and take responsibility for the mismanagement of this agency?

Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Nunavut
Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq Minister of Health and Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

Mr. Speaker, as I stated earlier, this is a draft audit. It is an internal audit. We take all audits very seriously. Once I receive the final audit, I will review it and put action plans together to address the issues.

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Dennis Bevington Western Arctic, NT

Mr. Speaker, two weeks ago the U.S. government issued permits for Shell Oil to release 250 metric tonnes of pollution in the Beaufort Sea, along the disputed territorial waters between Canada and the U.S. The so-called environmental standards developed by the Americans were clearly intended to apply to these Canadian waters. If we do not act now, we will be shut out of our own waters.

Has the government been involved in setting these environmental standards, or has it given up our Arctic waters and our Arctic sovereignty to the United States?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, we have ongoing discussions with our neighbours to the south on this and other issues that are important to the Arctic.

Obviously, this government will always stand up for Canadian sovereignty and fight for what is right. We have an incredibly important responsibility to ensure that our environment is protected and nowhere is that responsibility more important than in the Arctic, which has a very fragile ecosystem.

Public Safety
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

NDP

Jasbir Sandhu Surrey North, BC

Mr. Speaker, Canadians in Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland and Labrador were surprised this morning to find out that they have something new in common with British Columbia. These provinces are now also being threatened by the Conservative government. If they do not accept the government's deal on the RCMP, the RCMP will be pulled off the streets.

When will the Conservatives get back to the negotiating table and stop ambushing provinces with take it or leave it offers?

Public Safety
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Provencher
Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, all of the provinces that have contract policing know that the date for renewing the contract is March 2012. Everyone knows that. That is when the 20-year agreement comes to an end.

On September 9 the B.C. government, which is leading all of the other provinces that have not signed, said it would send us its proposals to consider. I am waiting. I have not heard from that government.

Champlain Bridge
Oral Questions

October 6th, 2011 / 2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Coderre Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Transport's duty, his responsibility, is to ensure that the existing Champlain Bridge is safe. Experts have released damning and troubling reports. The government is hiding the truth about the real state of the Champlain Bridge.

What would the government prefer to do? Table all of the audit reports and the certificate of compliance to prove that the bridge is safe, or one day defend itself in court for criminal negligence? Even the engineers think that we should prepare for the worst.

Champlain Bridge
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable
Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis Minister of Industry and Minister of State (Agriculture)

Mr. Speaker, the member for Bourassa is not one to lecture us about safety. I would remind the House that we have invested $359 million to make the Champlain Bridge safer, including $159 million in budget 2011, which the member for Bourassa voted against. That is not an impressive safety record.

I would like to share what the president of la Fédération des chambres de commerce du Québec, Ms. Bertrand, had to say about our government. She said, “After announcing an agreement on the harmonization of the GST and the QST last week, now we have a commitment on the Champlain Bridge...This is excellent news for Quebec's economy and we are proud to see the demands of the business community being heard.”