House of Commons Hansard #57 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was yea.

Topics

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Wascana, SK

Mr. Speaker, prejudicial legal manoeuvring continues in the political persecution against former Ukrainian prime minister Tymoshenko. Now the judge, who was to hear her appeal tomorrow, has just been fired, and her health in jail continues to deteriorate.

Other governments are wading in. What is Canada doing? Is Canada insisting on all legal proceedings being public? Has independent medical help been provided, and has Ukraine been warned that anything untoward happening to Ms. Tymoshenko will damage relations with Canada?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, this government has spoken out strongly against politically-based judicial proceedings. We are tremendously concerned by what we have seen in Ukraine. We have been very clear with the government of Ukraine that Canada, Canadians, and the Government of Canada expects that this individual will be treated fairly with an independent judicial process, and that there would be consequences to our bilateral relations if this does not happen.

We remain very concerned about her health and are certainly prepared to offer her anything we can to support her in that regard.

Infrastructure
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Olivia Chow Trinity—Spadina, ON

Mr. Speaker, the so-called build Canada infrastructure fund will run out in 2014, but the government cannot be trusted to give municipalities what they need: accountable, comprehensive and transparent funding. It does not even know how many jobs were created from the economic action plan.

To ensure transparency and accountability this time, will the minister commit to tabling progress reports on each phase of his consultations?

Infrastructure
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean
Québec

Conservative

Denis Lebel Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I was very proud this morning, on behalf of the Prime Minister, to launch the new three phase process for the new infrastructure plan.

I have here press release from the Fédération canadienne des municipalités, Connect Canada, Engineers Canada, and Union des municipalités du Québec, all supporting the great job we are doing with infrastructure.

Infrastructure
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Olivia Chow Trinity—Spadina, ON

Mr. Speaker, two out of three infrastructure applications from first nations communities have been rejected since 2006. That is close to 1,000 applications from aboriginal communities for roads, sewage treatment and clean water. The first nations were just told no. The result is desperate situations. These important applications should not be dismissed. They should be reviewed and approved.

Why does the infrastructure minister continue to tolerate third world conditions in first nations communities?

Infrastructure
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Vancouver Island North
B.C.

Conservative

John Duncan Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development

Mr. Speaker, we have spent unprecedented money on infrastructure on reserves. It does not all come out of the stimulus spending plan. A lot of it is departmental spending. We have spent it on water and waste water systems. We have spent it on housing. We have spent it through Health Canada on health clinics.

This is an unprecedented level of investment in first nations by any other government. This is a big accomplishment and we want to continue to build from that.

Infrastructure
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Jamie Nicholls Vaudreuil-Soulanges, QC

Mr. Speaker, our communities are facing major challenges. Although the government made the excise tax permanent, it is still insufficient to address our communities' infrastructure priorities. The government's excise tax brings in 10¢ a litre but municipalities receive only 5¢ a litre.

Will the government commit to indexing the amount given to the municipalities and thus assure Canadians that the money paid will indeed be invested in our communities?

Infrastructure
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean
Québec

Conservative

Denis Lebel Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, this morning, I had the honour of presenting, on behalf of our great Prime Minister, a new infrastructure program for 2014 onward.

This morning, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities praised the work of this government saying that no government has done as much for this country's infrastructure as our government has in the past few years: we have invested $33 billion in the building Canada fund, something that has never been seen in the history of this country.

Infrastructure
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Robert Aubin Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, while we wait for 2014, this government is once again turning its back on families and refusing to respond to calls for financing for the new Guertin amphitheatre in Gatineau and the new coliseum in Trois-Rivières. This infrastructure is an important economic driver for these regions and allows families to be more active and to attend sporting and cultural events.

Why is this government refusing to make any sort of contribution? Does this government want to kill these regions' economies at any price?

Infrastructure
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean
Québec

Conservative

Denis Lebel Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, we have said it before and we have repeated it in the past few days. I issued a statement on November 10 and I sent a letter to the Government of Quebec dated November 21 to the effect that our government will not support sports infrastructure that will be used for professional sports and major junior league teams. We have been very clear. We have said it repeatedly. This applies to the entire country—not just one region but the entire country. We will continue in that direction.

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

John Carmichael Don Valley West, ON

Mr. Speaker, today Statistics Canada reported that Canada's economy grew 3.5% in the third quarter. This growth is beyond the expectations of private sector economists. It is a positive sign in troubled times. Yet, we know that as a result of this period of economic uncertainty, there are many Canadian families that are struggling to make ends meet.

Would the Prime Minister please comment on the government's plan to protect jobs and economic growth in Canada?

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, today's numbers showing significant growth in the Canadian economy last quarter are very encouraging. At the same time, we remain very concerned about the problems in Europe, particularly the problems of debt and deficit.

These problems are part and parcel of the fragile global economy. That is why we will continue to focus on our plan to keep taxes low in order to foster employment and growth.

We will continue to be focused, as a government, on jobs and growth, and also on keeping taxes low. Now is not the time for the kind of job killing tax hikes proposed by the NDP.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Jinny Sims Newton—North Delta, BC

Mr. Speaker, Henk Tepper's family, in New Brunswick, is still waiting for him to come home safe and sound.

Today, we learned the RCMP sent his private information to Algeria before he was arrested. This sounds like the Maher Arar scandal all over again.

Will the Conservative government take responsibility for its role in this affair and will it tell this House, and the Tepper family, what it is doing to bring Henk Tepper home today?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Provencher
Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, I am advised that the RCMP has assisted Interpol with a criminal investigation. I am also advised that the RCMP co-operation was done in accordance with Canadian law. It would be inappropriate to comment any further as this matter is ongoing.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Hélène Laverdière Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is not good enough to say that the minister cannot speak publicly. What we have learned today is too serious. This is not the first time that personal information about Canadian citizens has been sent to foreign governments, and often in very problematic situations. The RCMP did not even advise Mr. Tepper that it was providing his personal information to a foreign country.

What does this government intend to do to address this situation and return Mr. Tepper to Canada?