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Track Rodney

Your Say


Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word is opportunities.

Conservative MP for Saint John (New Brunswick)

Won his last election, in 2011, with 49.70% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Corrections and Conditional Release Act December 4th, 2014

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-642, An Act to amend the Corrections and Conditional Release Act (high profile offender).

Mr. Speaker, I rise to introduce my very first private member's bill in this House. I feel confident that my colleagues will see the wisdom of these amendments to the Corrections and Conditional Release Act. The amendments are meant to address the concerns of any community that is home to a halfway house that houses high profile offenders after their release.

In my riding of Saint John, a situation arose last year when three such offenders were released to a halfway facility without warning to the community. This prompted a wave of fear throughout the community that I am sure is not unique to Saint John, but it was nonetheless unsettling.

This bill asks that an offender's name and photograph be posted on the Correctional Service website, along with any previous convictions, date of release, destination, and any conditions attached to the statutory release.

The bill also requires that Correctional Service Canada provide communities with notice of the proposed release of any high profile offenders, hold public consultations with community representatives, including police, and take into account the views of the host community.

I look forward to hearing the views of my colleagues on these proposed amendments to the Corrections and Conditional Release Act. I also hope that it addresses the concerns raised by my constituents in Saint John.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

Justice November 4th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, in June, Canadians across the country were shocked and horrified as they learned of the tragic and cowardly acts of violence carried out against RCMP officers in Moncton, New Brunswick.

Constables David Ross, Fabrice Georges Gevaudan and Douglas James Larche dedicated their lives to the protection and safety of their communities and paid the ultimate sacrifice for their country.

On Friday, the person responsible for these heinous crimes was given a life sentence, with no chance of parole for 75 years. Could the Minister of Justice please inform the House how this sentence was made possible?

Canada-Korea Economic Growth and Prosperity Act October 28th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, my riding is Saint John. I just want to clarify that, because people in my area are very particular about that. I just want to make sure that members understand very clearly.

We see a lot of potential with this trade agreement, from my area in particular, from Atlantic Canada's perspective, and from New Brunswick's perspective. New Brunswick is the largest, most export-oriented province for percentage of GDP per capita in the entire country. We are very dependent on trade, and we see a huge potential here. We have opportunities that go far beyond what most could imagine. We see a growing marketplace with great demands, and we look forward to meeting those demands.

Canada-Korea Economic Growth and Prosperity Act October 28th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I want to say that I enjoyed my time in committee with the hon. member. It is a committee that is very collegial and certainly continues to be to this day.

To the member's question, I spoke today about what I saw as the benefits to Atlantic Canada in this agreement. I saw a lot of opportunities. I spoke about a lot of opportunities that are there for Atlantic Canadians, and in every agreement there have to be some areas where one sector will do better than the other. We see great opportunity in Atlantic Canada, whether it comes from the seafood and fish products that are produced, the agriculture and agri-food products that are produced, or some of the services that we market around the world, such as industrial machinery. There are different opportunities that present themselves in this market. This is a rich and growing market, and we see huge potential for Atlantic Canada; and for my province alone, the potential is so great. We see a growing market.

As I said earlier, I would ask all members to ratify this agreement so we can get on with it and start taking advantage of the opportunities that lie ahead for us.

Canada-Korea Economic Growth and Prosperity Act October 28th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to rise today to speak to Bill C-41.

Our government is committed to protecting and strengthening the long-term financial security of hard-working Canadians. Canada's prosperity requires expansion beyond our borders into new markets for economic opportunities that serve to grow Canada's exports and investments.

That is why our government is currently pursuing the most ambitious trade expansion plan in our country's history. The Canada-Korea free trade agreement is a state-of-the-art agreement which covers virtually all sectors and aspects of Canada-South Korea commercial relations, including trading goods and services, investment, government procurement and intellectual property, as well as labour and environment.

The Canada-Korea free trade agreement would result in job creation and enhanced opportunities for Canadian and Korean businesses, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises, as well as investors, workers and consumers.

Today, I would like to speak about how the Canada-Korea free trade agreement would help the Atlantic provinces to expand their businesses and increase their competitiveness in the South Korean market, which presents many opportunities for my fellow Atlantic Canadians.

From 2011 to 2013, Atlantic Canada exported, on average, $64 million worth of goods to South Korea. Through the elimination of tariffs in major sectors of interest to Atlantic Canada, including fish and seafood products, agriculture and agri-food products, rail products, information and communication technologies, industrial machinery and medical devices, Atlantic Canadian goods would become more competitive in South Korea.

The agreement's outcomes in non-goods trade would also help service providers by facilitating business mobility and investors through increased protection and clearer rules. New Brunswick is one of the Atlantic provinces that stands to benefit significantly from the Canada-Korea free trade agreement.

The agreement would bring numerous benefits to New Brunswick, including the province's industrial goods sector. Our industrial goods sector is an important driver of the economy for New Brunswick and it employs about 6,700 hard-working New Brunswickers each year.

From 2011 to 2013, New Brunswick exports of industrial goods to South Korea were worth an average of $7.8 million. The Canada-Korea free trade agreement would eliminate tariffs on all of New Brunswick's exports of industrial goods to South Korea, including tariffs on information technology products which currently face tariffs of up to 13%. It would also eliminate tariff rates on industrial machinery and power-generating machinery, with the current tariff rate of up to 8%.

Tariff elimination would level the playing field for New Brunswickers relative to key competitors from the Untied States and the European Union, and bring substantial export gains to the province.

Nova Scotia is another Atlantic province that would gain considerably from the Canada-Korea free trade agreement. I would like to touch upon the agreement's benefits for the fish and seafood products sector, which provides jobs to more than 9,200 Nova Scotians.

Between 2011 and 2013, Nova Scotia's fish and seafood exports to South Korea were worth an annual average of $23 million. Nova Scotia would benefit from tariff elimination on products such as live and frozen eel from a current rate of up to 27%. Tariffs would also be eliminated on live and frozen lobster, frozen crab and scallops, which have a current rate of up to 20%.

On a point of interest, shipments of lobster from Halifax Stanfield International Airport to Seoul have already begun, with loads this past summer of nearly 40,000 kilograms.

Throughout the negotiations on the Canada-Korea free trade agreement, our government has actively engaged stakeholders to ensure that the agreement best reflects their needs. Stakeholders have provided strong support for the agreement, including the Nova Scotia Fish Packers Association, which is congratulating our government on the agreement with the following statement, “The free trade agreements to eliminate tariffs will seriously open up the markets. I very much applaud the efforts of government to reduce trade barrier”.

I am very excited for the many benefits that the Canada-Korea free trade agreement will bring to the Nova Scotians. That is a pretty strong statement in and of itself.

Prince Edward Island also has a lot to gain from the Canada-Korea free trade agreement, including P.E.I.'s agriculture and agri-food products sector. In 2012, this sector employed about 5,600 people in the province. From 2011 to 2013, P.E.I.'s agricultural exports to South Korea were worth an annual average of $2.6 million. Frozen french fries and pork products were the top export items.

P.E.I. would benefit from the agreement's elimination of tariffs on frozen potato products, which includes frozen french fries, from a current rate of 18%. The agreement would also eliminate tariffs on all pork and pork products of export interest, which range anywhere from 3% to 30%.

I would like to share a quote from the vice-president of Cavendish Farms, a producer of frozen potato products. He said:

...a free trade agreement between Canada and South Korea presents a golden opportunity for us to grow our presence in the South Korean market, and in the Asia-Pacific region as a whole. Free trade helps to support our industry, the workers we employ and the sale of the high-quality products that we’ve been producing for more than 30 years.

The Canada-Korea free trade agreement would bring numerous benefits that would help to boost the economy in Newfoundland and Labrador. The province's services sector, for example, would benefit significantly from the Canada-Korea free trade agreement. This is an important sector for Newfoundland and Labrador, employing some 180,400 Newfoundlanders and Labradorians in 2012 alone and accounting for more than half of the Newfoundland and Labrador economy. The province's key export interests in the services sector include retail and wholesale trade, environment, travel and tourism, construction, and real estate services.

The Canada-Korea free trade agreement would provide services suppliers from Newfoundland and Labrador with greater and more predictable access to the diverse South Korean market. The Canada-Korea free trade agreement contains temporary entry commitments that are the most ambitious South Korea has agreed to in any of its free trade agreements and would go a long way to boosting services exports for the province.

We are standing with Canadians on the Canada-Korea free trade agreement by ensuring that investor protection provisions remain as the cornerstones, as has been the case in all modern trade and investment agreements. We take tremendous pride in our record on free trade agreements, which has put Canada back in the game of trade negotiations. Canadian workers and businesses were at risk of falling behind in this era of global markets, but thanks to the aggressive agenda of our government, we are giving our citizens a competitive advantage.

By continuing to actively pursue broader markets and access to new investment opportunities, our government is providing Canadian businesses and exporters with access on preferred terms to the largest, most dynamic, and fastest-growing economies and regions around the world. No government in Canadian history has been more committed to the creation of jobs and prosperity for Canadian businesses, workers, and their families. Deepening Canada's trading relationships in dynamic and high-growth markets around the world is key to these efforts.

Without a doubt, the Canada-Korea free trade agreement promises many benefits for Atlantic Canada. It would level the playing field for Atlantic Canadian businesses relative to their competitors in the U.S. and the EU. It represents a concrete next step in bolstering Atlantic Canada's presence in the fastest-growing and dynamic Asia-Pacific region.

Today I am asking that all members of the House ensure the speedy ratification of the Canada-Korea free trade agreement, so that hard-working Canadians can start reaping the benefits of this agreement and solidify their presence in the Asia-Pacific region as soon as possible.

Business of Supply October 9th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, as the hon. member is no doubt aware, my area is very excited about the possibility of this energy east pipeline project. We are excited about the construction of a marine terminal in our area because we know the value of this industry. We know the value to the economy in our local area. We have seen it. We have the largest refinery in all of Canada in Saint John, New Brunswick. We have the Canaport marine shipping terminal, which brings oil into and out of the Bay of Fundy. Over 400 tankers a year have been traversing the Bay of Fundy for over 40 years now without incident, so we know how to get the job done. We know that those jobs bring real economic benefit to our region, and we are excited.

Business of Supply October 9th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, the member's question was very specifically related to the injunction brought forward by the Quebec Superior Court. I want to point out very clearly that this court case was in regard to provincial laws and provincial officials. It has nothing to do with DFO or DFO's process. We are confident that DFO's process is diligent, thorough, and based on the best available science.

Business of Supply October 9th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, my colleague and I have worked very closely over the years on the fisheries and oceans committee. I certainly enjoy working with him.

With regard to his question, I think I outlined it very specifically in my speech when I said that we have invested $31 million over the next five years when it comes to world-class tanker safety systems. That is what we are committed to. We are committed to ensuring that the Coast Guard has the tools it needs to do the job that we ask of it. We would not ask it to do any more than it can do without having the proper tools in place. We are continuing to invest in that purpose.

Business of Supply October 9th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with the member for Dauphin—Swan River—Marquette.

It is a pleasure to rise today to speak to the motion put forward by my colleague across the floor.

In my comments today I want to focus on a particular part of the member's motion. The member talked about how the proposal will constitute an unacceptable environmental threat. I want to talk about what our government has done to mitigate any of the concerns that might come from the environmental threats that the member talked about.

Our government, in support of a world-class tanker safety system, has announced $31 million over five years for the Canadian Coast Guard to establish an incident command system, which is commonly referred to as an ICS, across the Canadian Coast Guard. This forms a crucial part of the world-class tanker safety system initiative by offering standardized on-scene, all-hazard management methodology, which is designed to ensure the effective command, control and coordination of response efforts to all maritime incidents.

Implementation of the incident command system will increase the Canadian Coast Guard's ability to work collaboratively with other emergency responders who currently use this system. Therefore, it will allow multiple stakeholders to participate in important decision-making processes simultaneously and also for effective planning and response initiatives in order to address all marine pollution and all hazard incidents in a predictable and structured fashion.

By 2018 the incident command system will be fully implemented, strengthening the existing response regime. Simply put, the Canadian Coast Guard and its partners will be better positioned to respond to oil spill events and other marine emergency incidents in co-operation with key partners and other departments and agencies in a timely and effective manner. The incident command system is another example of how Canada's world-class tanker safety system is being strengthened to protect Canadians and our environment.

Fisheries and Oceans Canada, including the Canadian Coast Guard, is pleased to have the opportunity to partner with Transport Canada, Environment Canada and Natural Resources Canada on a suite of important initiatives that are being implemented to support our world-class tanker safety system.

Under Canada's marine pollution preparedness and response regime, the polluter is responsible for cleaning up and paying for its own marine spills. Private sector response organizations play an important role by maintaining effective response plans and an inventory of equipment to respond to spills from ships in Canadian waters south of 60.

In May 2014 the government announced the implementation of area response planning, which will provide a new and improved method for preparing and responding to marine oil pollution incidents.

Area response planning is a new and dynamic risk-based model that allows for spill preparedness and responses to be tailored to the level and types of risk in a given region based on certain factors such as marine conditions, environmental sensitivities, tanker size, and traffic levels.

This new and improved response planning approach will replace the current regime where private sector response organizations are mandated to maintain the same response capacity across Canada. Our government is seizing an opportunity to ensure the appropriate frameworks and safeguards are in place and enhanced to protect our environment now and for generations to come.

This new area response planning process will be piloted in four initial areas: the southern portion of British Columbia; Saint John and the Bay of Fundy in New Brunswick; Port Hawkesbury in Nova Scotia; and the St. Lawrence Seaway from Quebec City to Anticosti Island, Quebec.

As one can imagine, transitioning to an area response planning approach is a significant undertaking. This is why we are focusing significant effort on the planning process to ensure the pilot projects successfully demonstrate the future of our world-class tanker safety system.

The Canadian Coast Guard and our federal colleagues acknowledge that we cannot develop the area response plans alone. To this end, beginning in 2015, a series of engagement activities will be planned to ensure stakeholders' views are reflected in the process.

The Canadian Coast Guard is the lead federal agency in developing the local area response plans, using a collaborative approach to involve aboriginal communities, other levels of government, and a broad range of local stakeholders.

Safety is the top priority of the Canadian Coast Guard. In fact, Canada has one of the most advanced and comprehensive search and rescue systems in the world and is regularly consulted by other countries seeking advice and training on how to establish and maintain a system as effective and efficient as ours. The Canadian system is made up of multiple layers that provide an effective response capacity to any search and rescue incident within Canada and our surrounding waters.

The Canadian Coast Guard and National Defence are the principal pillars of the federal system. They provide the primary response to aeronautical and maritime emergencies with specialized equipment and highly trained professionals who remain ready to respond to incidents 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year.

The Canadian Coast Guard continues to maintain a maritime rescue sub-centre in Quebec City which provides bilingual search and rescue coordination services for mariners in distress. The search and rescue system can be activated by the professional search and rescue coordinators at any of the three joint rescue coordination centres in Canada. These search and rescue coordinators are highly trained and can coordinate additional response capacity from other government resources, the highly committed volunteers of the Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary, the Civil Air Search and Rescue Association, and commercial vessels and aircraft in the vicinity of mariners in distress.

The final but no less important piece of the search and rescue system is the multitude of plans and exercises that ensure that all the layers of Canada's search and rescue regime are ready to respond effectively and efficiently to real-life distress situations. The federal government continues to invest in the assets and the modernizing of systems to ensure the ongoing high level of service that Canadians expect and deserve. Billions of dollars have been invested in new Coast Guard, naval, and air force assets that will not only ensure the present level of service but also improve our capacity and capabilities to respond to incidents anywhere in Canada well into the future.

Finally, the federal search and rescue system regularly reviews and re-evaluates Canada's capacity and capability in relation to the risk. This entails working closely with our provincial and private partners to ensure that our plans are up to date and as comprehensive as possible to serve and protect all mariners in Canadian waters.

In closing, the Government of Canada will continue to support the brave men and women of the Canadian Coast Guard by equipping them with the resources required to protect Canadians and our environment.

It is exactly because of initiatives like these that I cannot support the motion brought forward by my colleague today.

The Economy October 8th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, our government is focused on what matters most to Canadians: jobs and economic growth. Over 1.1 million net new jobs have been added since the recession, one of the strongest job creation records in the G7. On top of that, our low-tax plan is making Canada a more attractive place to invest. In fact, Bloomberg has named Canada the second most attractive country in which to do business.

Could the Minister of State for Finance please update the House with the latest good news on the economy?