House of Commons Hansard #137 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was military.

Topics

Air Canada
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Luc Desnoyers Rivière-des-Mille-Îles, QC

Mr. Speaker, 3,000 jobs, the majority of which are in Quebec, are in jeopardy because Air Canada is transferring its technical services to Aveos, which could then move to El Salvador.

Why is the Minister of Finance not demanding that the letter and the spirit of the legislation be respected and that Air Canada maintain control of its operational and overhaul centres?

Air Canada
Oral Questions

March 2nd, 2011 / 2:55 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon
B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, long before this question hit the floor of the House of Commons and the Bloc finally woke up to this, we have been dealing with Air Canada on this for months. We wanted assurances. Are the jobs going to be secure? Will the maintenance facilities in Mississauga, Winnipeg and Montreal be maintained? Will the employees be saved? Will they have the same pension benefits, entitlements and so on? The answer is yes on all fronts.

To the Bloc, hello, wake up, that is the story. The members are finally cluing into it, but only now the facts come to light. We are way ahead of them on this one.

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Gerard Kennedy Parkdale—High Park, ON

Mr. Speaker, the government has been bragging for weeks about what it will accomplish on the environment and climate change. Yesterday we learned what it really meant. The government is gutting support to protect Canadians from pollution and climate change, removing funds for all the new parks it has been promising for years and slashing money to monitor health hazards all to pay for more prisons for first-time offenders.

Will the minister now stand up in the House and admit that the only difference between him and four failed predecessors is that his failure has been in a record short period of time?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Thornhill
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, I reject outright the outrageous premise of the question, but I thank my colleague because it gives me the opportunity to say that Environment Canada remains committed to initiatives and investments to ensure the health and safety of Canadians and their environment.

Departmental expenditures change from year to year, especially in a regulatory department like Environment Canada where a significant portion of funding is temporary in nature. My colleague will recognize our successful temporary programs like the economic action plan and the home retrofit.

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Gerard Kennedy Parkdale—High Park, ON

Mr. Speaker, I reject outright a Minister of the Environment who has rolled over and surrendered more resources more quickly than any other minister in the history of Canada, some $800 million in 60 days.

Energy prices are up an average of $200 in the past year per family, yet the government is cutting 100% of support for the home retrofit program intended to protect families.

Will the Minister of the Environment, who wrote off this program so publicly after two days on the job, now explain to seniors and working families who are trying to make ends meet why they are being abandoned so callously by the government?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Thornhill
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, I cannot accept the outrageous premise of my colleague's question.

Coming back to our highly successful temporary programs like the economic action plan, like the home retrofit program, or the Retire Your Ride program in my department, which took more than 120,000 older highly polluting vehicles and 4,000 tonnes of emissions off the road before our new greenhouse gas emission regulations came into effect, I would suggest my hon. colleague that he cool his jets and wait for the budget on March 22.

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Linda Duncan Edmonton—Strathcona, AB

Mr. Speaker, perhaps we will give the minister another try.

Clearly when it comes to air pollution and climate change, the only thing the government wants to cut is necessary funding. After Environment Canada revealed that the government would achieve only a quarter of its promised greenhouse gas reductions, the same government gutted climate change funding. Despite clear evidence of failed federal action on oil sands impacts, the government eviscerates budgets for clean air and water.

How can the government possibly defend these regressive actions?

The Environment
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Thornhill
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, again I cannot accept the premise of the question, but I can thank the member and remind her that we have a plan, unlike the Liberals who for 13 years achieved nothing on remedial action for climate change. Our plan is working.

With regard to the main estimates and our continuing commitment to Canadians and the safety of their environment, I say to the member, too, that she should cool her jets and wait for the budget on March 22.

The Environment
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

NDP

Nathan Cullen Skeena—Bulkley Valley, BC

Mr. Speaker, the minister is entitled to his opinion but not to his own facts.

Under the Conservatives, greenhouse gases are amongst the highest in the world, while spending on green energy solutions has been slashed. Last year the minister killed off the popular home retrofit program and scrapped support for renewable heat and green energy. Yesterday an additional $600 million was eliminated.

Meanwhile, the minister really took one for the team, cutting a full 1% from his limo budget. Is the only Conservative plan to fight climate change to have the minister walk a little more?

The Environment
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Thornhill
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, I do not understand the entire context of the member's question.

However, I can tell him that we are well on target to reducing greenhouse gases and meeting our 2020 target of a 17% reduction from our 2005 base year.

I would remind the member that Canada contributes barely 2% of total greenhouse gas emissions every year. We are engaged in encouraging the large emitters to join us in reducing those emissions.

The Budget
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Conservative

James Rajotte Edmonton—Leduc, AB

Mr. Speaker, since 2006, Parliament has passed five straight successful budgets.

In that time our Conservative government has cut taxes for the average Canadian family by $3,000, rebuilt Canada's infrastructure, brought health care transfers to record highs and much more.

While the Liberal-led coalition wants to force an unnecessary election to impose a $6 billion tax hike, our government is focused on what really matter to Canadians: jobs and economic growth.

As we approach the next phase of Canada's economic action plan, would the minister inform Canadians when he will present budget 2011?

The Budget
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, Canada's economic growth shows that the economic action plan is working.

Our economy has grown for six consecutive quarters with over 460,000 new jobs created since July 2009. While these are positive signs, the global recovery remains uncertain and there is more to do.

I am pleased to request the designation of an order of the day to present budget 2011, the next phase of Canada's economic action plan, on Tuesday, March 22, 2011 at 4 p.m.

Air Canada
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Liberal

Kevin Lamoureux Winnipeg North, MB

Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the Prime Minister.

Thousands of good-quality jobs in Winnipeg, Mississauga and Montreal are at risk. While the Prime Minister is being silent, the act is very clear in terms of Air Canada, and I quote:

—the Corporation shall...maintain operational and overhaul centres in the City of Winnipeg—

including in Mississauga and Montreal.

Why is the Prime Minister not holding Air Canada accountable and making it abide by the law?

Air Canada
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon
B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to reassure him that in Mississauga, and in that other place he could not remember, the jobs are secure.

That is why, back in October and November, during the hearings on the future of how they would be structured and the opening of the sites in Mississauga, Winnipeg and Montreal, the assurances we received from Air Canada were that not only were all employees going to continue to be hired but also that they would have the same wages, the same pensions, the same entitlements. They would have the option of staying in Air Canada or going over to Aveos, but more importantly, no jobs would be lost and those maintenance facilities will stay open.

National Capital Commission
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Bloc

Richard Nadeau Gatineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, even though the Conservatives promised to be transparent, we have learned that they are quietly trying to amend the rules concerning government contracts to allow the National Capital Commission to award contracts without a tendering process. Each year, tens of millions of dollars' worth of contracts could be awarded without a tendering process, at the whim of NCC executives and the minister responsible.

Does the government plan to make the NCC a Conservative slush fund so that the party can reward friends of the regime here in the Ottawa Valley?