House of Commons Hansard #136 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was information.

Topics

Electricity
Oral Questions

March 1st, 2011 / 2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Paule Brunelle Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, Newfoundland and Labrador and Nova Scotia have asked the federal government for a $375 million loan guarantee in order to build a power line that would deliver electricity—energy—from the Lower Churchill to the United States. The Conservative government refuses to shut the door on that request, which is unfair to Quebec. I would remind the House that Hydro-Québec was developed without the help of the federal government.

Can the government clearly tell us that it does not intend to directly or indirectly fund this network, which was designed to bypass Quebec?

Electricity
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, there are two matters relating to the Lower Churchill. One is an application for a loan guarantee, and that is being discussed by officials in the federal government with the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador. The other is a P3 application to PPP Canada Inc. with respect to a proposed transmission connection, and that is being dealt with in the normal way by PPP Canada Inc.

Electricity
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Paule Brunelle Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, the federal government cannot hide behind PPP Canada. PPP Canada is a creature of the Conservative government that is funded by Parliament. The federal government should not be using money that comes, in part, from Quebeckers to pay for an underwater cable that will create competition for Hydro-Québec.

If Newfoundland and Labrador and Nova Scotia want a hydroelectric network, should they not do what Quebec did and pay for it themselves?

Electricity
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, PPP Canada Inc. deals with applications from all across the country. I am sure the member noticed the announcement the other day in Lachine, Quebec, with respect to the maintenance yard and for the commuter trains in the greater Montreal region: a P3 Canada application, approved by PPP Canada Inc. I did not hear any complaints elsewhere in Canada about that approval.

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Bernard Bigras Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Mr. Speaker, while Quebec has imposed a moratorium on oil and gas exploration and development in the Gulf of St. Lawrence until 2012, we learn that drilling on the Old Harry site in Newfoundland could begin as early as next year. Quebec is being exposed to risk, especially from an environmental perspective, by this hasty decision by Ottawa and Newfoundland and Labrador.

Will the federal government comply with the National Assembly motion calling for the suspension of existing permits until the results of the environmental assessments are known?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable
Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, the Old Harry site is regulated by the Canada-Newfoundland Offshore Petroleum Board, a regulator we trust.

The health of the workers and environmental protection are our top priorities. No project will be approved if the regulator thinks those priorities will be compromised.

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Bernard Bigras Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Mr. Speaker, Quebec needs to have full jurisdiction over its territory in order to better protect its ecosystems and be master of its domain. The federal government signed an agreement with Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador 25 years ago and should do the same with Quebec to allow it to express its own environmental and energy priorities.

Why is Ottawa refusing to give Quebec the same advantages it gave to Newfoundland and Labrador and Nova Scotia?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable
Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, negotiations are under way between Quebec and our government. Things are going well. One thing is clear: no project will be approved if our regulators are not convinced that the health of the workers and environmental protection will be ensured. If the Bloc wants to make this a divisive issue, it is free to do so. We will make Canada a global clean energy superpower.

Public Safety
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Scott Brison Kings—Hants, NS

Mr. Speaker, the finance committee is trying to investigate the cost of the Conservatives U.S.-style criminal justice agenda, but the Conservatives are taking a page right out of Richard Nixon's playbook and are obstructing that investigation every step of the way.

Last night the House ordered the Conservatives to stop the obstruction. Will the Conservatives respect last night's vote and stop breaking the rules? Will they finally tell Canadians the true cost of their U.S.-style criminal justice agenda?

Public Safety
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to inform my friend from Kings—Hants that we tabled in the House last week the information the committee requested.

Public Safety
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Scott Brison Kings—Hants, NS

Mr. Speaker, that is bunk and the minister knows it. The Parliamentary Budget Officer has said that just one of the Conservatives' 18 crime bills would cost the provinces more than $1 billion every year.

Has the minister provided the provincial governments with a detailed breakdown of how much the Conservatives' U.S.-style crime agenda will cost the provinces, yes or no? If yes, will the government share that information with the House of Commons?

Public Safety
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Provencher
Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, I think Canadians find the Liberal position on funding prisons very confusing. On the same day that the member for Bonavista—Gander—Grand Falls—Windsor was asking our government to spend more money on prisons, the member from Beauséjour was in Ottawa saying that our government was spending too much.

While the Liberals are busy saying one thing and doing another, we are making communities safer. Unlike the Liberal-led coalition, we think dangerous criminals need to be behind bars and not released into our communities early.

Finance
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Alexandra Mendes Brossard—La Prairie, QC

Mr. Speaker, at the height of the economic crisis, the Minister of Finance told us in all seriousness that there would be no deficit. Now, the Minister of Finance has handed us the worst deficit in the history of the country. We know that one of the Conservatives' priorities is to build megaprisons. How much will that cost? According to the Parliamentary Budget Officer, it will cost approximately $13 billion.

Where do the Conservatives plan to get this money? Do they plan to try to stick the provinces with the bill?

Finance
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Provencher
Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, I find this very interesting. I was in Newfoundland and Labrador last week and the members from Newfoundland advised me that they wanted more prisons built. At the same time, the Leader of the Opposition was saying we should not build more prisons. Perhaps we could get some clarification from the Liberals on their position in respect of that.

What we know is that the Liberals are soft on crime. They want criminals out on the street. They want ordinary Canadians at risk from those criminals.

Finance
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Alexandra Mendes Brossard—La Prairie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives are using imaginary figures. They have run up the largest deficit in Canadian history, and the debt continues to build. Common sense tells us that when you are in a hole and you want to get out, the best thing to do is to stop digging.

Despite a red ink budget, the Conservatives want to borrow an additional $6 billion to give to the richest companies.

Are middle-class families once again going to be the ones who have to pay the price for the Minister of Finance's mismanagement?