House of Commons Hansard #48 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was water.

Topics

Small Business
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Beauce
Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier Minister of State (Small Business and Tourism)

Mr. Speaker, I want to be very clear in what I said in French.

All Canadians, who know something about that or who are witnesses on some front, must declare that to the authorities because it is important. It is taxpayer money and we take that very seriously.

Canadian Wheat Board
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Malcolm Allen Welland, ON

Mr. Speaker, last week, the Minister of Agriculture accused the elected Wheat Board members of stealing farmers' money. However, now we know the truth. The minister is planning to keep $200 million of farmers' hard-earned money, a $200 million grain tax. Not only is the government hauling out the single desk, it is picking farmers' pockets in the process. This is farmers' money, not the governments.

When will the minister give it back?

Canadian Wheat Board
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Battlefords—Lloydminster
Saskatchewan

Conservative

Gerry Ritz Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, what western Canadian farmers are looking for is an opportunity to market their own grain, durum and barley, and we will give them that opportunity.

The contingency fund is there. The Wheat Board has used it at times, like a slush fund. We want to ensure that Mr. Oberg's sticky little fingers stay out of that, as they have been dipping into the pool accounts on farmers, spending tens of millions of dollars buying boats, spending like drunken sailors.

We will not allow that to happen. We will hold that contingency fund and help western farmers use that money in their own best interests.

Canadian Wheat Board
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Malcolm Allen Welland, ON

Mr. Speaker, the farmers he intends to give it back to are the ones who are actually leaving and do not get it.

It is really simple. The government promised to allow Wheat Board farmers a vote and it broke that promise. Now the government is imposing a $200 million grain tax on western farmers.

Last week, the government agreed to join the trans-Pacific partnership but will not tell Canadians if supply management is on the table.

The government sold out western farmers. Will it do the same thing to supply managed farmers across this country as it did to western farmers this week?

Canadian Wheat Board
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Battlefords—Lloydminster
Saskatchewan

Conservative

Gerry Ritz Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, this government respects the hard-working families who work on our dairy and poultry farms and who gather eggs every day so we can have them for breakfast. They respect that in us. We have been there for them when they need us.

We have a tremendous working relationship with the supply managed sector. We had it in our campaign platform. Those members did not. We put it in the throne speech. They voted against it. Who do members suppose supply managed farmers support? It is this side of the House.

Pensions
Oral Questions

November 17th, 2011 / 2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Mark Adler York Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, our government's top priority is the economy and jobs. We are working for Canadians to support economic certainty and financial security.

I know the Minister of State for Finance has been travelling across Canada talking to our provincial partners, small business and others about improving our retirement income system.

Could the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance update Parliament on our government's legislation for a pooled registered retirement pension plan?

Pensions
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Saint Boniface
Manitoba

Conservative

Shelly Glover Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, this summer, the Minister of State for Finance travelled to every province and territory to talk about the pooled registered pension plan. We wanted to improve retirement savings for Canadians, especially workers in small business and the self-employed, which is why we introduced legislation on the pooled registered pension plan today. This great, low cost savings option will help future retirees build their retirement nest eggs.

I hope all parliamentarians will support this very good measure. I hope the NDP abandons its plans to convince other countries to terminate jobs here in Canada.

Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, the question is whether or not the government will ignore the warning from the senior parliamentary law clerk that the behaviour of the member for Peterborough at the ethics committee is both illegal and undermines the independence of the court.

Instead of giving an answer, the Minister of Canadian Heritage has been giving us a smoke and mirrors show, ranting about shotguns, the Wheat Board and the state of the beleaguered Canadian taxpayer.

However, a question remains. In the government's attack on the CBC, is it willing to undermine the independence of the Canadian courts?

Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam
B.C.

Conservative

James Moore Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, again, all the member for Peterborough is doing is what parliamentary committees are supposed to do.

Earlier this year, the previous Speaker of the House, Peter Milliken, said that parliamentary committees can ask for whatever documents those parliamentary committees want.

The member for Peterborough is simply asking that the CBC be accountable for the taxpayers' money that it receives. That is not an attack on the CBC. That is a mandate that the member for Peterborough received from his voters to come to Ottawa and ask for accountability. He is doing his job.

Why is the NDP standing against accountability and against responsible spending at the CBC?

Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, if this were about accountability to taxpayers, the Conservatives would have given the member for Peterborough the job of cramping the style of the high-flying Muskoka minister who blew through $50 million, cannot remember how it was done, had absolutely no receipts but assures us that every Tory in Muskoka had a good time.

Accountability is about respecting the divisions of the Constitution. That was the question that was put to the parliamentary clerk.

The question remains: Is he flying solo or is this part of a larger government plan to undermine the independence of our Canadian courts?

Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam
B.C.

Conservative

James Moore Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, I see my hon. colleague has his tinfoil conspiracy hat firmly on today.

All the member for Peterborough is doing is asking for accountability. CBC receives a lot of money from taxpayers and taxpayers want to know how the money is being spent. It is very simple and very straightforward.

With regard to parliamentary committees, they can ask for any document they want or any witness they want to come before committees to fulfill that mandate.

The member for Peterborough is standing up for taxpayers and the member for Timmins—James Bay is standing in his way. Why is he fighting against the interests of taxpayers? That is the question that should be answered. Why is he against taxpayers' interests?

Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Alexandre Boulerice Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Mr. Speaker, this government really has a strange way of doing things. On the one hand it lets one member do whatever he wants and request documents that are the subject of an ongoing court battle. That undermines the separation of powers between the legislative and judicial branches. What is more, the parliamentary law clerk deemed that this was unlawful. On the other hand, the President of the Treasury Board said, “oh, sure”, promising to hand over handwritten documents that he himself used to authorize $50 million in spending for gazebos in his riding. We are still waiting for those documents.

Will he hand them over today?

Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam
B.C.

Conservative

James Moore Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, by attacking the member for Peterborough, what the NDP is doing is showing that it has no regard for the accountability of the CBC or other organizations. It has no regard for the needs of taxpayers across the country. The member for Peterborough is doing his job. It is as simple as that.

Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Alexandre Boulerice Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am sad to see that the President of the Treasury Board has a new spokesperson today. So that he fully understands the question I just asked, I will try to be as simple and clear as possible. Canadians have a right to know exactly how that money was distributed in Parry Sound—Muskoka. The member for Parry Sound—Muskoka has 242 forms sitting in drawers in his constituency office in Huntsville. Twice, he told everyone that he would hand them over.

Will he keep his word and finally hand over these documents?

Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam
B.C.

Conservative

James Moore Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, what an astonishing double standard by the NDP.

The President of the Treasury Board and the former minister of infrastructure appeared before a parliamentary committee and testified with regard to this matter.

All the member for Peterborough is doing is saying that the CBC should be accountable before committee.

All we are saying is that the CBC should be elevated to the same level of accountability and responsibility as the President of the Treasury Board has already demonstrated.

The NDP demanded accountability from the President of the Treasury Board and he answered the call. All we are doing is asking for accountability from the CBC. It is pretty straightforward.