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Conservative MP for Cumberland—Colchester—Musquodoboit Valley (Nova Scotia)
Won his last election, in 2011, with 52.50% of the vote.
Statements in the House
Employment December 5th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, we have introduced the family tax cut. This provides support to every single family with children across the country.
We have increased the universal child care benefit. For young people under age six, it will be increased by $60 a month, or $720 a year. For children aged six to 17, it is also going to be increased to $720.
We are getting the job done for families from one end of this country to the other. We ask the opposition, if they truly care about child care, if they truly care about young families, to please stand up and support this legislation.
Petitions November 28th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, I am proud to present a petition from hundreds of Canadians to introduce legislation to amend the Criminal Code of Canada to include torture committed by non-state actors, private individuals and organizations as a specific and distinct criminal offence.
Committees of the House November 28th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the eighth report of the Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities, entitled supplementary estimates (B) 2014-2015.
Employment Insurance November 28th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, unlike what the opposition would do, this government believes that employers and employees who contribute to the program have the right to have premiums either stay the same or actually get lower. That is why we treat the employment insurance fund with respect, unlike the previous government, which raided it for over $50 billion.
Canadians can count on us not to do that, and to keep in support of all Canadian workers, employees, and contributors, like the employers across this country. We are defending the EI system.
Employment Insurance November 28th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, the changes we have made in employment insurance do nothing to limit access to employment insurance. If people lose their job due to no fault of their own, the employment insurance system will be there for them, just as it always is. That is what it is there for. We are supporting unemployed Canadians getting back to work.
Roy Henderson November 28th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, today, I am proud to rise in the House in celebration of the life of a true Canadian hero. Roy Henderson, who was a proud World War II veteran and a member of the Royal Canadian Navy, passed away this week.
Roy was a true community volunteer and stalwart. Following service in World War II, he joined the Canadian Legion. He was a volunteer fireman. He had a great career as an insurance salesman for Metropolitan Life.
Roy was always a strong supporter and loyal member of the Progressive Conservative Party of Nova Scotia and the Conservative Party of Canada. He was a key organizer for our party during the Stanfield years in my hometown of Truro, but what is more, he was a close family friend and someone I truly respected.
Tammy and I would like to give our condolences to the entire Henderson family on the passing of Roy. He had a tremendous life. He contributed to our entire community. God bless you, Roy.
Housing November 25th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, we do agree on that. When the mortgages end and no longer need to be paid and they are operationally sufficient, we can take some of that money and use it for other projects, for some of the 90,000 people that the member opposite talked about who need housing.
I would like to remind the member that our government has invested heavily in housing, providing over $16.5 billion since 2006. This helps low-income families, seniors, people with disabilities, people in aboriginal communities, and other vulnerable groups across the country. Economic action plan 2014 confirmed that we will continue to work with the provincial and territorial levels of government, municipalities, and other stakeholders, to ensure the accessibility and sustainability of housing, including social housing for those who are most in need.
Our government is investing in those Canadians who need it most through our investment in affordable housing. This will provide federal funding of $2 billion from 2011 to 2019. This program alone represents an eight-year funding commitment, and is over and above the ongoing support for existing social housing on and off reserve.
In closing, these investments are producing real results, and our government stands by its record on housing.
Housing November 25th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to stand here today to address the hon. member's question. The hon. member for York South—Weston has asked the government to explain its position on the issue of long-term funding for affordable housing in Canada, and I am pleased to have the opportunity to respond to this question today.
Let me begin by stating very clearly that my colleagues and I share the hon. member's concern for the well-being of people who find themselves in need of housing.
Our government has made unprecedented investments in affordable housing. We have made those investments over the past number of years, and we will continue to do so. Since 2006, our government, through CMHC, has invested more than $16.5 billion in housing. These investments have benefited more than 900,000 Canadian individuals and families. Again, this year, the government will provide $2 billion in housing investments right across this country.
As for the longer term, I am sure that all hon. members of the House will recall that in economic action plan 2013, we renewed the investment in affordable housing until 2019, with $1.25 billion in funding over five years. Further to that, in recognition of the distinctive needs of northern Canada, our government also announced $100 million over two years to support the construction of new and affordable housing in Nunavut.
The renewal of the investment in affordable housing ensures continuity of federal funding for housing programs across Canada, and I am pleased to say that renewal agreements have now been signed with most provinces and territories, and remaining agreements should be in place very shortly. An important component of these agreements is that provinces and territories match the federal investment in their jurisdictions. They are also responsible for designing and delivering affordable housing programs that meet their local housing needs and priorities.
Hon. members should know that the investment in affordable housing, which of course, was introduced by our government in 2011, is making a huge difference in communities all across Canada. As of September 30, over 200,000 households have benefited from this initiative.
As well, this does not include the hundreds of thousands of Canadian households that benefit from the annual federal subsidy for existing social housing units, both on and off reserve. Provinces and territories also contribute to this funding. This is provided to low-income Canadians through long-term agreements with housing groups. These agreements span 25 to 50 years, and when they mature, the federal government funding will end, as it was always planned to end, because Canadians know that when the mortgage is paid off, they stop paying the bank.
The majority of non-profit and co-operative housing projects are expected to be financially viable and mortgage free at the end of the operating agreements. Housing providers will find themselves with valuable real estate assets and a decrease in operating expenses that can be used to continue to offer affordable housing to other Canadians who need it most.
For housing projects that may face financial difficulties when subsidies end, CMHC has been actively working to help them prepare for the end of their operating agreements. It is important to remember that provinces and territories can opt to use funds from the investment in affordable housing to support projects after their operating agreements have matured.
National Child Day November 20th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, first, I would like to give my condolences, thoughts and prayers to the families of the three students who were shot today at my alma mater of Florida State University. Hopefully they are all okay.
Our government has made it a top priority to make life more affordable for Canadian families, to help them prosper, and to ensure that they have the right of choosing what is best for their own families. We want to ensure that all children get the best start in life so they can reach their potential, whether it be at home, at school, on the playground, or beyond.
Today is National Child Day and I am honoured to rise in the House and say that we are living up to our commitment to support Canadian families. Whether it be the expansion of the universal child care benefit, whether it be the doubling of the children's fitness tax credit and making it refundable, whether it be the family tax cut, we are keeping that commitment to Canadian families to make life more affordable.
I am very proud of our government and we will continue to put forward measures. I only hope that the opposition will choose to support this, because we are on the side of Canadians, their children, and making sure they have the opportunities and potential for the future.