House of Commons Hansard #50 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was pension.

Topics

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Andrew Scheer

Order, please. The hon. member for Timmins—James Bay.

G8 Summit
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, over the last number of months, the Conservatives have tried out a whole whack of excuses to explain the outrageous behaviour of the Muskoka minister. No line has been more bizarre than at least “every penny was well spent”. We know that $3,000 was spent to put up a chandelier, $1,500 to move a bed and a new fridge just for the flowers. No wonder the Muskoka maverick thought he got a good deal when he shelled out $100,000 for a gazebo.

Will the minister explain why $2 million of taxpayer money was spent on renovating his friend's hotel?

G8 Summit
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Mississauga—Erindale
Ontario

Conservative

Bob Dechert Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, Canada hosted the world's leaders for an important summit. When hosting the leaders of the G8 countries and thousands of other guests, it is expected that some adjustments would be made to accommodations. Every invoice was reviewed by professional public servants, as is always the case, before money went out the door.

The summit is already paying dividends on important initiatives such as our maternal and child health initiative.

G8 Summit
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, the new Mr. Nobody does not have the facts right. The civil servants were not allowed to review it. It was reviewed by the three amigos. There was the minister who got to play Daddy Warbucks, the hotel manger who got a $2 million renovation right before the property was flipped for $26 million and there was the mayor who walked away with two giant white elephants.

When will the member stand, be accountable and show us the documents that allowed this boondoggle to come forward?

G8 Summit
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Mississauga—Erindale
Ontario

Conservative

Bob Dechert Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the important thing to point out is that every invoice was reviewed by professional public servants, as is always the case, before money went out the door. The summit is already paying dividends on important issues, such as maternal and child health initiatives, and that member should support those initiatives.

G8 Summit
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Alexandre Boulerice Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Mr. Speaker, thanks to the NDP we now know that the G8 summit resulted in an incredible waste of public money, perhaps the worst since the sponsorship scandal. Canadians want to know why no one has been punished. In addition to the gazebos, Olympic-sized skating rinks, fake media centres—there is no end to the list—we have just learned that the Deerhurst resort received millions of dollars in public money to make cosmetic changes that cost us an arm and a leg. The government paid exorbitant amounts to move a bed or a chandelier and of course, once again, taxpayers footed the $2 million bill.

Can the President of the Treasury Board explain to Canadians what was the cost value of the G8 fiasco that was held in his riding?

G8 Summit
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Mississauga—Erindale
Ontario

Conservative

Bob Dechert Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, it was a great honour for Canada to host the G8 summit. When hosting the leaders of the world's great economies, it is expected that some adjustments must be made for their accommodations. Every invoice was reviewed by professional public servants, as is always the case, before the money went out the door.

G8 Summit
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Alexandre Boulerice Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Mr. Speaker, history never repeats itself, but it sometimes follows a similar script.

It seems that the President of the Treasury Board was not the only one to profit from the G8 summit in his riding. The Deerhurst resort also won the G8 lottery by getting $2 million in free renovations. Less than nine months later, this hotel was sold for $26 million. We know why: because it did not have to pay for the renovations itself.

Is that the Conservatives' tax plan: take public money and distribute it to its friends in the private sector? Can the member for Parry Sound—Muskoka explain why public money was spent to line the pockets of an individual?

G8 Summit
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Mississauga—Erindale
Ontario

Conservative

Bob Dechert Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, perhaps the member has never hosted international guests in his home. When one does that, accommodations are made for guests, especially when they are leaders of the great economies of the world. The important thing to remember is that every invoice was reviewed by professional public servants, as is always the case, before money went out the door.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Hélène Laverdière Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the UN estimates that over 3,500 civilians have been killed in Syria during the government's crackdown. Today the Security Council is debating sanctions against Syria. For Canada, failure to win a seat on the Security Council is not an excuse for inaction.

Will the government reach out to Russia and China to join others in the international community working to end this regime's violence against its own people?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Mississauga—Erindale
Ontario

Conservative

Bob Dechert Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the campaign of terror and violence against the Syrian people must stop. Canada again calls on President al-Assad to step down immediately.

Canada stands with the Syrian people in their efforts to secure freedom and democracy. Our government will continue to work with our allies to bring diplomatic pressure to the Syrian government, including bringing forth stronger economic sanctions.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

NDP

Hélène Laverdière Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, we need more than just promises and rhetoric.

The sanctions imposed against Syria in October were supposed to send a strong message to the Bashar al-Assad regime, but Suncor, which is working with the Syrian state oil company on a $1.2 billion project, said that its operations were not affected.

Will the government ensure that the new sanctions against Syria will prevent its friends from doing business as usual when millions of civilians are being killed?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Mississauga—Erindale
Ontario

Conservative

Bob Dechert Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, Canada has taken decisive action by imposing sanctions that directly target members of the current Syrian regime and those who provide it with support. We are currently working with our allies to bring diplomatic pressure to bear. We will be bringing forth further stronger economic sanctions.

National Defence
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

NDP

Matthew Kellway Beaches—East York, ON

Mr. Speaker, the government has taken arrogance and secrecy to a new low. Without letting Canadians know, the Conservatives are throwing half a billion dollars into a new U.S. military satellite. We, in the House, had to find out about this program from the media.

On what grounds does the government feel free to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on military projects, without telling anyone? Would the minister please advise the House and Canadians today what this satellite will be used for?

National Defence
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Vaughan
Ontario

Conservative

Julian Fantino Associate Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker , our missions in Afghanistan and Libya have proven that advance secure communications is critical to the success of modern day military operations. The Canadian contribution to this international partnership would guarantee our Canadian Forces the capacity to communicate securely and officially during operations when lives are at stake.

Our investment fits with the Canadian Forces' existing budget and will result in supporting and creating skilled Canadian jobs across the country.