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NDP MP for Gaspésie—Îles-de-la-Madeleine (Québec)

Won his last election, in 2011, with 33.80% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Petitions April 10th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I wish to present several petitions today, all on the same subject, specifically the deterioration of VIA Rail service in eastern Canada, especially in northern New Brunswick and eastern Quebec, including in my riding of Gaspésie—Îles-de-la-Madeleine.

The petitioners not only want better service, but they are also calling on the federal government to invest in a section of railway between Miramichi and Bathurst in order to keep the network running from coast to coast in Canada.

Petitions April 8th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, today I have the honour to table three petitions on the same subject: the decline of VIA Rail service in eastern Canada.

One of these petitions was signed by thousands of people in the Acadie—Bathurst region; others were signed by 24,000 people in the Campbellton region; and another was signed by about 5,000 people in my riding, Gaspésie—Îles-de-la-Madeleine.

The petitions I have here are just some of those many signatures, but they testify to the truly deplorable decline in our region. In the Gaspé, the train used to run three times a week, but now there is no service at all. In northern New Brunswick, it used to run six times a week; now it runs just three times a week.

If CN closes the 70-kilometre line from Miramichi to Bathurst, passenger rail service in all of eastern Canada could be lost for good.

Sir John A. Macdonald's national dream is at risk. I hope the government will uphold its predecessor's dream and ensure coast-to-coast service.

Petitions April 4th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to rise today to present two petitions on the same subject.

The petitioners are calling for improved VIA Rail service in eastern Quebec and northern New Brunswick. The petitions I have here today are proof that despite the responses the government has given us in question period, the people of my region and northern New Brunswick believe that VIA Rail service must be improved and that the investments made so far are clearly not enough for eastern Canada.

Petitions April 3rd, 2014

Mr. Speaker, the second petition I am presenting was signed by approximately 24,000 people from northern New Brunswick and the eastern part of my riding, Gaspésie—Îles-de-la-Madeleine. They are speaking out against VIA Rail service cuts.

To follow up on what my colleague from Thunder Bay—Rainy River was saying earlier, the regions need reliable service. Eastern Canada was recently pummelled by storms, and that is not uncommon in winter. They need reliable and frequent VIA Rail service. Unfortunately, there is a risk that they may lose it altogether.

I am honoured to present these two petitions, and I hope that the government will take note.

Petitions April 3rd, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to present two petitions today.

The first was signed by thousands of people in my riding, Gaspésie—Îles-de-la-Madeleine. They are condemning the cuts to Canada Post and, more importantly, the privatization of services in the town of Gaspé.

People are very concerned about the fact that they may well lose a basic service. In remote areas in particular, it is essential that Canada Post's services be reliable and available.

Petitions March 31st, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present two petitions with similar themes. Both have to do with VIA Rail.

A number of petitioners in my riding denounce the total abandonment of my region by VIA Rail.

I also have a petition from northern New Brunswick that denounces the potential abandonment of that region by VIA Rail, which may happen by July 1.

I would like to point out that I had the pleasure of taking the train today. With the storm we had in eastern Canada, there is no way that I would be here in the House of Commons if it were not for the train. A number of people on the train were in the same situation. The only way to get out of the storm was by VIA Rail.

We depend on this service a great deal. I hope that the government is taking note.

Questions Passed as Orders for Returns March 25th, 2014

With regard to government funding, how much funding did the government provide from the 1993-1994 fiscal year to the 2010-2011 fiscal year, and from the 2012-2013 fiscal year to the present, in the ridings of Gaspésie—Îles-de-la-Madeleine and Haute-Gaspésie—La Mitis—Matane—Matapédia, broken down by year, riding, department or agency, initiative and amount?

Questions on the Order Paper March 25th, 2014

With regard to the wharf at Port Daniel—Gascon to be built in conjuction with a planned cement factory in Port Daniel—Gascon: (a) what studies have been conducted; (b) which fisheries will be protected in relation to the wharf planned for Port Daniel—Gascon, both during and after the project; (c) which fisheries will not be protected in relation to the building of the wharf, both during and after the project; (d) which fisheries will be at risk, both during and after the project; (e) what conditions will be imposed on McInnis Cement to protect the fishing industry, fishers and fish; (f) how does Fisheries and Oceans Canada intend to protect the fishing industry, fishers and fish; (g) what future steps will be taken to protect the fishing industry, fishers and fish; (h) will fishers be compensated for any negative impacts incurred by them or by the fishing industry or fish; (i) which fishers’ associations did Fisheries and Oceans Canada consult; (j) with which fishers’ associations has Fisheries and Oceans Canada negotiated, is negotiating or will negotiate; and (k) what steps has Fisheries and Oceans Canada taken to protect the fish habitat at Port Daniel—Gascon and what remedial measures have been anticipated to compensate for the loss of fish habitat?

Questions Passed as Orders for Returns March 24th, 2014

With regard to Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions, specifically the Gaspé regional office: (a) what are the existing standards and procedures to be followed by employees and directors of the regional office to respond to funding requests; (b) what changes have been made to the standards and procedures to be followed by employees and directors of the regional office to respond to funding requests in the past 10 years; (c) in which months of which years were the changes to the standards and procedures to be followed by employees and directors of the regional office to respond to funding requests implemented; (d) what are the existing standards and procedures to be followed by employees and directors of the regional office to respond to meeting requests from MPs’ offices; (e) what changes have been made to the standards and procedures to be followed by employees and directors of the regional office to respond to meeting requests from MPs’ offices in the past 10 years; (f) in which months of which years were the changes to the standards and procedures to be followed by employees and directors of the regional office to respond to meeting requests from MPs’ offices implemented; (g) what is the complete list of meetings between MPs and employees and directors of the regional office in the past 10 years, broken down by year and political affiliation of MPs; (h) what is the complete list of meetings between representatives of MPs and employees and directors of the regional office in the past 10 years, broken down by year and political affiliation of MPs’ representatives; (i) what is the complete list of meetings between former MPs and employees and directors of the regional office on a subject other than a former MP’s business, in the past 10 years, broken down by year; (j) what are the existing standards and procedures to be followed by employees and directors of the regional office to respond to requests for information by phone from MPs’ offices; (k) what changes have been made to the standards and procedures to be followed by employees and directors of the regional office to respond to requests for information by phone from MPs’ offices in the past 10 years; (l) in which month of which years were the changes to the standards and procedures to be followed by employees and directors of the regional office to respond to requests for information by phone from MPs’ offices implemented; (m) what is the complete list of phone communications between MPs and employees and directors of the regional office in the past 10 years, broken down by year and political affiliation of MPs; (n) what is the complete list of phone communications between representatives of MPs and employees and directors of the regional office in the past 10 years, broken down by year and political affiliation of MPs’ representatives; (o) what is the complete list of phone communications between former MPs and employees and directors of the regional office on a subject other than a former MP’s business, in the past 10 years, broken down by year; (p) what are the existing standards and procedures to be followed by employees and directors of the regional office to respond to requests for information by email from MPs’ offices; (q) what changes have been made to the standards and procedures to be followed by employees and directors of the regional office to respond to requests for information by email from MPs’ offices in the past 10 years; (r) in which month of which years were the changes to the standards and procedures to be followed by employees and directors of the regional office to respond to requests for information by email from MPs’ offices implemented; (s) what is the complete list of email communications between MPs and employees and directors of the regional office in the past 10 years, broken down by year and political affiliation of MPs; (t) what is the complete list of email communications between representatives of MPs and employees and directors of the regional office in the past 10 years, broken down by year and political affiliation of MPs’ representatives; and (u) what is the complete list of email communications between former MPs and employees and directors of the regional office on a subject other than a former MP’s business, in the past 10 years, broken down by year?

Sealing Industry March 24th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, this week marks the start of the sealing season, which is open in the Magdalen Islands. The seal hunt is an integral part of the islanders' way of life, and the hunt is sustainable, responsible and necessary. Every year the people of the Magdalen Islands organize the Rendez-vous Loup-marin on the archipelago, an event that pays tribute to those who continue this fine tradition through their work.

Over the course of the last few decades, many islanders have tried to establish seal product businesses, but have been thwarted by a lack of support and resources. Nonetheless, today a number of them have managed to succeed with innovative products and services. The time has come to support our hunters in order to develop this sustainable economy and create good jobs. As a new hunting season opens, I ask the people of the Magdalen Islands to be careful and I wish them a very successful hunt.