Strengthening Motor Vehicle Safety for Canadians Act

An Act to amend the Motor Vehicle Safety Act and to make a consequential amendment to another Act

Status

In committee (House), as of Sept. 20, 2017

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Summary

This is from the published bill. The Library of Parliament often publishes better independent summaries.

This enactment amends the Motor Vehicle Safety Act for the purpose of strengthening the enforcement and compliance regime to further protect the safety of Canadians and to provide additional flexibility to support advanced safety technologies and other vehicle innovations. It provides the Minister of Transport with the authority to order companies to correct a defect or non-compliance and establishes a tiered penalty structure for offences committed under the Act. The enactment also makes a consequential amendment to the Transportation Appeal Tribunal of Canada Act.

Elsewhere

All sorts of information on this bill is available at LEGISinfo, provided by the Library of Parliament. You can also read the full text of the bill.

Strengthening Motor Vehicle Safety for Canadians ActGovernment Orders

September 19th, 2017 / 4:45 p.m.
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Conservative

Rachael Harder Conservative Lethbridge, AB

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to hear the hon. member acknowledge the great work that has been done by the deputy leader of the Conservative Party. She certainly has done a tremendous amount of work on this issue. Once again, we are very happy to see this piece of legislation come back to the floor and to support it going forward in order to look after the safety and well-being of Canadians.

That said, it took the government two years to bring it to the floor. The reason it was able to do that within two years, which I would still argue was a fair amount of time and much more than was needed, was, again, the hard work done by my hon. colleague. I would want her to be acknowledged in the work that she did, rather than the current government taking responsibility and praise for her work.

Strengthening Motor Vehicle Safety for Canadians ActGovernment Orders

September 19th, 2017 / 4:45 p.m.
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Conservative

Matt Jeneroux Conservative Edmonton Riverbend, AB

Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to rise and ask my colleague a question. She raised a good point. It took two years. We are now about two years into this mandate of the Liberal government, and we are finally going through the process of debating this bill.

That reminds me that this summer hundreds and hundreds of people came to my office to talk to me about the tax changes that are happening right now. There was a 70-day consultation period, and that was it from the government.

Could the member comment on the hypocrisy between the two? We had 70 days to talk about an important issue that I am talking to many constituents about in my riding, and this bill has taken two years to come forward.

Strengthening Motor Vehicle Safety for Canadians ActGovernment Orders

September 19th, 2017 / 4:45 p.m.
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Conservative

Rachael Harder Conservative Lethbridge, AB

Mr. Speaker, that is an excellent question, and I would like to thank my hon. colleague for asking it.

We have a piece of legislation in front of the House today. The hard work was done by the previous government, and yet it took the current government nearly two years to finally bring it to the House for debate. Two years is a long time for this piece of legislation when all the background work was already done.

However, I will talk about another piece that is in the works, and that is tax hikes on small businesses across Canada. We are talking about hard-working women and men from coast to coast across this nation. We are talking about women and men who had a dream, a vision, a desire to provide jobs and to contribute to the well-being of our country. We are talking about men and women who stepped up, took a risk, and put their houses, their families, their cars, and their well-being on the line in order to supply jobs to Canadians. We are talking about the majority of Canadians who find their well-being in small businesses.

That is how they make the money, the paycheques that come home and put food on the table, put fuel in their cars, pay for the mortgage of the houses they live in, put their kids into school and sports, and allow them to live a good, healthy life as Canadians. We are talking about middle-class citizens of this country. We are talking about a government currently in power that is putting in three different changes with regard to our taxation, and it is going to rob Canadians of their jobs and punish small business owners who create those jobs.

Strengthening Motor Vehicle Safety for Canadians ActGovernment Orders

September 19th, 2017 / 4:45 p.m.
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Conservative

Peter Van Loan Conservative York—Simcoe, ON

Mr. Speaker, it will be tough for me to hit those heights that the member for Lethbridge just did in standing up for her constituents, but we in the Conservative Party have been standing up for ordinary Canadians for quite some time. That is what this party is all about, our agenda of consumer protecting legislation, of measures to protect ordinary Canadians, which is reflected in the bill, which is essentially the Liberal government taking up our Bill C-62 from the last Parliament and bringing it forward in this Parliament. That is one example of it, but there are many other examples of that.

We did a great deal to introduce more competition, for example, in the wireless sector so that people would pay less. It is an ongoing struggle to do in this country, and it tends to happen in federally regulated industries for some reason, but we did that. We protected consumers when we brought in a ban on biphenyl, BPH, which was a chemical in a lot of plastic materials to make them soft. It was appealing to have in things that babies and children would be chewing on, and of course, it was hazardous. Our government banned that so that children would be protected.

I and other members encouraged a ban on phosphates in dishwasher detergents so that we could protect the health of Lake Simcoe and so many other lakes in which phosphates were affecting water quality, and that was to the detriment of all consumers and ordinary citizens. We did it throughout, with a number of measures under our chemical action plan where we methodically evaluated, one after another, chemicals that were being introduced into consumer environments or into people's homes, to assess whether they were hazardous, what the risks were, if we really needed to have these chemicals in people's homes, and how we could protect Canadians better.

We also did it in some of our rules that we brought in to ensure that there was greater truth in food packaging, again, something to protect consumers. I could go on and on, but that was an agenda where the Conservative Party, in our finest tradition, was standing up to protect ordinary Canadians, to protect ordinary citizens and provide them with the protection that they thought was a legitimate role of the government, of the state.

That is often a question because another element of our Conservative philosophy is that we are great believers in freedom, liberty, and minimizing the role of government. The question becomes what is the appropriate role of government and where is there a place. What many of these things have in common are values that justify the government stepping in where people look to government to play that role. As Conservatives, we understood and continue to understand that difference between when government is the correct answer to the question and when it is not.

In a case like this one, where we are dealing with safety, safety is paramount. There is no greater role for a government than to ensure the safety of its citizens. In this case, when we are dealing with auto recalls, the dangers of something going wrong of a mechanical nature are indeed great. The consequences are great, and that is one reason that suggests perhaps the government has a role, one reason why Canadians expect government to play a role.

Another occasion is where there is an imbalance in information or knowledge between different entities or in power. With automobiles, that is certainly the case. More and more with specializations in society, typical Canadians do not necessarily know how to fix a car, what is wrong with a car, and how to recognize if there is a flaw in a vehicle. They do not have those kinds of resources compared with the very significant multinational corporation that has a lot at stake. That is where people are looking for government to step in on the side of ordinary consumers, and that is what we Conservatives were doing when we introduced the predecessor to this bill, Bill C-62.

As technology changes, as things become more technical—and we have seen that happen in the auto sector with automobiles—again there is a place for us to step in on the side of consumers, on the side of ordinary Canadians to make sure their interests are protected. That is again a legitimate role for us.

I talk about that imbalance. That imbalance when major corporations are involved has sadly and unfortunately been an issue in the auto sector. We have seen that recently. We have seen that on the international stage with some of the European manufacturers who were caught up in this very major scandal to do with diesel emissions and diesel emission testing.

Big corporations found ways to alter their technology so the vehicles “knew” when they were being tested and suddenly changed the way they operated to score better on those tests and then later, on the efficiency test, went back to the regular way of operating. Obviously, that would raise a lot of questions of trust, but it is also a place where the government has to step in to defend consumers and their interests. It meant, of course, that the efficiency and the mileage advertized was not really what was expected by consumers and citizens, and it also meant that some of the other objectives of those emission and efficiency standards were not being achieved.

We also have to ask ourselves why that happens. Why did those companies do that? We see that is also a response to government intervention that the companies went there. Obviously there are important questions of ethics and morality in play and incentives we have to look at, but what is funny is that it puts those two different tensions at play. When the Conservative government brought Bill C-62 forward, the member for Milton was the minister at the time, though there was much work done in the run-up to it by predecessor ministers, but the purpose was to find the right balance in standing up for consumers and making sure their interests were protected.

Earlier today, we discussed recalls in the drug industry and some of the powers of big pharma, another area where the Conservative government was very active in standing up for ordinary citizens and an area where perhaps more still needs to be done to ensure the interests of ordinary citizens are protected. We see a little of that right now with the spreading of the opioid crisis. Have we really looked carefully at whether all of the incentives are right and all of the protections are there for consumers? That needs to be addressed at the federal level and especially at the provincial level. These are all important values at play, but the bottom line for us as Conservatives, people who stand up for their constituents, is that we want to be there for those consumers when they face those imbalances and risks and stand up for them.

With respect to the auto industry in particular, I have had personal experience with recall notices, and some funny things can happen. With my most recent recall notice, I went to a dealership and, oddly, the mechanic working on the car refused to do the recall work, suggesting to me I had to get my car detailed first in order to get it done, because he was not happy with the cleanliness of the area where he would have to work on the airbag. I have a Honda and took it to a Honda dealership here in Ottawa. I had to ask myself why that happened. There was nothing particularly unusual about the situation, but what troubles me is that either there were incentives in place—where the mechanic was being told if he sold 10 car details that month he would win a trip somewhere, he was trying to upsell, and this was his chance to do that—or perhaps there is an imbalance in the pressure on dealerships to provide these recall repairs and they feel they do not have sufficient compensation to do it, which goes to the amendment before the House that the Senate has introduced.

I do not know whether that amendment strikes exactly the right balance, but I do know that amendment obviously addresses what may be a very real issue, and my own personal experience is telling me that it was a real issue. I do not want to leave anybody with the impression that I have a problem with Honda. My car has 470,000 kilometres on it. It has been outstanding and I would buy another Civic Si when the time comes, which is probably relatively soon. It is a high-quality vehicle manufactured not too far from my constituency and that of the hon. member for Simcoe—Grey. It is an outstanding vehicle that has performed very well, but this recall experience tells me that there are still very real problems, that we have to do things to stand up for consumers, to ensure their interests are protected, and that we have to get the balance right. I am of the view that Bill C-62 was a great step forward in doing that. I am also of the view that perhaps some of the initiatives in the amendment that comes from our friends in the Senate may be yet another element in improving that one step further. It is certainly an issue for which we have to find the right answer.

This, to me, is a piece of legislation I have no problem supporting. It is in the long tradition of what we in the Conservative Party have stood for and is, in fact, a bill that we presented in the last Parliament. I am happy to speak in favour of it and vote for it when the time comes.

Strengthening Motor Vehicle Safety for Canadians ActGovernment Orders

September 19th, 2017 / 4:55 p.m.
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Winnipeg North Manitoba

Liberal

Kevin Lamoureux LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, the member across the way spent a great deal of time talking about the importance of safety, which is, in fact, what the legislation is primarily here for. However, when we look specifically at the amendment being proposed by the Senate, it is important for us to recognize that part of the Senate amendment would have the Government of Canada play a stronger role in terms of regulating commercial relations. If we read through the amendment, we will see it is a very serious concern. Knowing the member across the way as well as I do, I am sure he would have some opinion on that particular issue.

When we think of the Motor Vehicle Safety Act and how important it is that we keep to that scope within the proposed legislation, I would be interested to know if the member feels we would be going in the wrong direction, which I believe, if in fact we were to start looking at ways to regulate commercial relations within this particular legislation. Would the member not agree that, even though the intention might have been good, it is something that should maybe be re-thought out? I suggest it be sent to the standing committee in terms of the role of looking at this specifically.

Strengthening Motor Vehicle Safety for Canadians ActGovernment Orders

September 19th, 2017 / 5 p.m.
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Conservative

Peter Van Loan Conservative York—Simcoe, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have to disagree with my friend, because using his logic, we would not be able to support the bill. The consequence of forcing a recall, and the way that our auto sector is structured these days, means that the dealer, being one party as the member was saying, is different from the other party, the manufacturer. The dealer is asked to correct the defect that has been established by the manufacturer. Therefore, the government is already inserting itself in determining that commercial relationship through that order.

What has been stated, and what my own experience tells me, is that there is perhaps not a perfect balance, whatever contractual arrangements those dealers have with the manufacturers. Again, there is also a question there about who has greater bargaining power in that relationship and how we evaluate making sure that it is a fair transaction. I think there is a problem. The dealers, the local small businesses—I know the current government does not place great value in those smaller local businesses—have to be treated fairly. They cannot be left holding disproportionately the cost of a problem that was created by the manufacturer and be told that they have to live with that if they want to be a dealer. It is simply unfair, because those are unknown costs down the road that they had nothing to do with causing but are being asked to pay for. Therefore, any normal contractual relationship, any normal legal relationship, would suggest there should be something there to correct that and make those who are responsible for the cause having to bear the cost.

Otherwise, I put it to the member, more and more people will get my experience. They will show up with their recall notice, and the car dealers are going to find some other reason, some other way to try to recover that cost that they are going to have to bear for doing the recall repair. In order to pay for that recall repair, they will be forcing individual consumers to pay for other unnecessary repairs and services so that the dealers are left whole financially from what they feel they have been treated unfairly on.

Strengthening Motor Vehicle Safety for Canadians ActGovernment Orders

September 19th, 2017 / 5 p.m.
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Liberal

Kevin Lamoureux Liberal Winnipeg North, MB

Mr. Speaker, I do not agree with the member across the way. If we look specifically, the minister could order a company to correct a defect and could also order the manufacturer to cover the cost of the remedy, which is what this legislation would do. This protection would be available to owners, including the dealers. Therefore, the argument that the member across the way is putting forward, I would say, is faulty at best. Would he not agree?

Strengthening Motor Vehicle Safety for Canadians ActGovernment Orders

September 19th, 2017 / 5 p.m.
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Conservative

Peter Van Loan Conservative York—Simcoe, ON

Mr. Speaker, certainly what has been heard from the dealers is that the way it is written is not sufficient, and the way it is working right now already is not sufficient to satisfy the relationship.

As I said, I am not sure the amendment has the exact wording right, but it is clear that people are not satisfied with what the legislation proposes. It is an issue that needs to be addressed and needs to be wrestled with. I think that is an important thing for us to look at, and it is a good reason for this to be evaluated more closely at committee after we adopt it at second reading.

Strengthening Motor Vehicle Safety for Canadians ActGovernment Orders

September 19th, 2017 / 5 p.m.
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Conservative

Bev Shipley Conservative Lambton—Kent—Middlesex, ON

Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with the hon. member for Peace River—Westlock.

As always, it is a pleasure to have the opportunity to stand in this great place and debate legislation. In the case of this legislation, we do not think much about this, quite honestly. We purchase a vehicle, regardless of whether it is new or used, and we take it for granted that the vehicle works considering today's technology and expertise, the workmanship, and the professionals that develop, manufacture, and assemble the parts into the vehicle. We take it for granted that when we open the door and push the button or turn the key that the vehicle will run for as long as advertised, for a few thousand miles, and it will come with a warranty covering it for a certain amount of time. In many cases that is the truth, that is how it works.

I think most of us have received at some time a recall notice from a manufacturer or dealership on a particular part of the car or truck that we are driving. Sometimes it is a part that a manufacturer thinks may malfunction and cause an inconvenience, such as sitting on the side of the road. Other times, that recall will have a safety precaution attached to it. It may involve an ignition switch or something to do with the fuel line or a hose that runs fluid to the engine, or it might be some other thing that could cause serious injuries. Tragedies have happened because of faulty mechanisms within a vehicle.

Bill S-2 falls on the heels of Bill C-62 that was brought forward in June 2015 by our then minister of transport and now our deputy leader. This morning in his speech, the Minister of Transport acknowledged the work the House had done but particularly the work done by the deputy leader in bringing forward Bill C-62. Bill S-2 tries to make Bill C-62 better. What we have heard in the discussions today is that we in the Conservative Party of Canada and members of all parties are really concerned about ensuring that these highly mechanized, technological vehicles that we get into every day are safe.

We support Bill S-2. What are some of the reasons we support it? The Senate amendments that have come forward would be significant additions to the bill. They would strengthen the legislation and give more security not only to the purchasers, but also to those who sell vehicles and take the risk of having a recall put on and having to come up with some way to be reimbursed.

Is it the funding that they get reimbursed to replace the parts? I talked to one of my dealers. As it is, if they get a safety recall and that part is not available, because it is a safety recall they obviously cannot nor do they want to turn around and say to me, or to my family member or to anyone else, to just get back in the car and when that part comes in they will replace it. That is not, quite honestly, the way it happens and nor is it the way it should happen. However, it puts an awful financial impact upon that dealer who has the responsibility of a vehicle that the manufacturer made. From my understanding, the dealer then has to do something to accommodate the customer. He or she has to give the customer a loaner or, in some cases, say there is a back order and, because it may have been a large recall, the number of parts across Canada take a while to be produced, so at some point in time the dealer may make a deal so that the customer has a vehicle to be safe in and to drive. Again, now the dealer is left with a vehicle that he or she cannot sell because it has a safety recall on it.

As part of that legislative amendment that is in front of us, I know the minister was looking at it in a bit of a different way: that this is actually about safety and not really about compensation issues. One of the strengths and the opportunity that we have in this bill is to give it the breadth of significance that maybe is allowable with these amendments, and so I would support some of those.

In 2015, for example, five million passenger cars were recalled in Canada. One of the issues is that the government would be able to force the recall. At some point in time, that is going to be an important part of what happens. Right now, it is voluntary. We have been very fortunate in Canada that we have not had serious impacts by not having the manufacturers do the recalls that are required on a voluntary basis. However, at some point in time, the government needs to have some sort of recognition and authority when there is a default, particularly a safety one. As much as I always get concerned when I see government wanting to put a lot of oversight over our businesses, and particularly our small businesses, that eat up those kinds of costs, in terms of safety we have an opportunity in this bill to make things better. I am just going to wrap up with that. I did not get into a lot of details.

However, as one of my colleagues said, we have a number of issues in front of us in terms of innovation technology with driverless vehicles of all kinds. We have issues when we are talking about the safety of vehicles. We are also compounding the issues on the road with the use of alcohol and now, with the proposed legislation that is going to come, with marijuana and the effects it would have on drivers; it is not just with drugs but with drugs and alcohol. I want to emphasize that, if the government is going to move forward with this, the department has to have the resources to make sure it can follow through with the enforcement that would come with this.

With that, I look forward to having the opportunity of supporting this bill, but mainly the support is because I want it to get to the committee. The committee would have the opportunity to look at not just the bill but also the amendments that come with it and make this as strong a bill as we can to protect all of our Canadian people, our friends and our families, on the road.

Strengthening Motor Vehicle Safety for Canadians ActGovernment Orders

September 19th, 2017 / 5:10 p.m.
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Conservative

Bev Shipley Conservative Lambton—Kent—Middlesex, ON

Mr. Speaker, for those of us who have sat on committee, as my friend across the way has, when we start bringing witnesses in and talking to them, sometimes things that we have not thought about pop up. That is why we go to committee. Sometimes issues we had not thought about or thought were secondary, when they are correlated to something else, they can become a priority.

One issue I had not really considered until I listened to the debate today was the significance of some protection to our small business owners and dealers. In my area of Lambton—Kent—Middlesex, these are all family-run car dealers and businesses. Not to be rude, but I am getting calls from many of these people who are really concerned about the small business tax that is being proposed.

Many of the amendments will get a lot of debate because they were brought forward after the original bill was considered. I will leave it at that.

Strengthening Motor Vehicle Safety for Canadians ActGovernment Orders

September 19th, 2017 / 5:15 p.m.
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Conservative

Arnold Viersen Conservative Peace River—Westlock, AB

Mr. Speaker, Bill S-2 is about something that I am somewhat familiar with from the fact that before I came to this place, I worked in a Chrysler dealership and performed many recalls over the years.

The interesting thing about the recalls is that there is no similarity between any two of them. As mechanics tasked with correcting the issue, we often wondered why one thing was recalled and another was not, or why the same part was often recalled several times in a row. That goes to some of the issues the bill is trying to correct. I am not necessarily convinced that the bill will correct them, because in some cases we are truly not able to squeeze blood from a stone. In particular, we have seen this with the recalls of airbags. Many automotive manufacturers use the same supplier of airbags, and so the airbag recall crossed several different companies. It will be interesting to see how this goes forward. I know there is anxiety that comes with that. My own vehicle has had that particular airbag recalled, and people keep getting a notice saying there is problem but no fix or parts for it. That is ongoing.

The recalls are interesting, particularly from the dealership perspective. I see we are talking about the 1% of the price, and things like that. Now, there are games that get played with that 1% of the price. The same part being purchased at retail would be $150. If a recall part that could not be ordered for a retail customer was coming through the dealership, it might only be $10. We get the 1%, but it is 1% of $10, not of $150, or maybe even more if that exact same part was being ordered for a customer. Since it is the percentages that are being put on, that dramatically reduces the price to the dealership.

Parts departments run on percentages. Everything is a percentage. Typically, they have an 18% handling cost. Of every part that comes in to a dealership and gets shipped back out again or is sold, 18% of that sale is the cost of their storing it, the cost of their employees, the cost of keeping the lights on, and all of those kinds of things.

In the amendments we were talking about, there is a good initiative to put the percentage in. It helps the local dealerships. It is always interesting how the games get played. To some degree, the free market will have to work this out. In a lot of cases, the dealers already have these agreements with the manufacturers on how they are going to get paid for recalls. Recalls have been happening for a long time now, and so a lot of these things have been worked out through the free market.

I commend this bill. It is supportable. There is no problem with that. I would just acknowledge that we might be coming late to the party in the fact that most recalls go off without a hitch. There are already vast agreements in place for them. The free market, typically through the court system, will often demand a recall of this or that. Often, these recalls are worldwide or global. If something happens in one jurisdiction, the company gets alerted to the fact there is a particular problem with a particular piece. The entire fleet of that vehicle is then recalled. A problem might be discovered in Mexico and the vehicles in Canada are recalled. The companies themselves do that just to limit their liability from these kinds of things. They are facing a lawsuit in one country and do not want to face it in other countries, and so they will issue the recall.

When it comes to the dealership level, it is always interesting that things get downloaded all the time. The costs of doing business typically end up getting downloaded to the dealership level.

It is relatively easy to announce that there is a recall for something, but it is the dealership that faces the customer. The manufacturer announces there is a recall and says there are no parts. The dealership has to deal with the fact that every time the customer gets a notice, they might come to the dealership and ask what it means. The dealership then has to outline what the notice means. A lot of times there will be one or two notices before they actually get the parts. Each time the customer shows up at the dealership, it takes resources from the dealership. Instead of being able to deal with a customer who brings money in, the service writer has to deal with a customer who is just there for a recall notice. They are not going to be booking an appointment or anything. The customer is going to leave without any cash flow coming to the dealership. There is a significant cost associated with doing that. We need to ensure our network of dealers across the country get paid for the recalls that are put in place.

If it is the minister who puts the recall in and the manufacturer says it is not, that gets really interesting in terms of who pays. They are saying the manufacturer will pay. That is great, but we need to ensure the manufacturer, or someone, continues to pay the dealerships when it comes to a mandated recall by the minister. That is my reading of the amendment, anyway.

The whole system is in place already for when a manufacturer declares a recall, but it gets a little more interesting if the minister is going to declare the recall. Can the manufacturer at that point just say that since it is the minister who is declaring it, the parts will be made available and they will pay for getting the job done, but not necessarily reimburse the dealership's parts department or ensure they can actually make some money on it, particularly in the case of recalls that take a long time to develop the parts or develop the solution.

We have been talking a lot about recalls in the abstract. We just say the word “recall”. I would like to talk about a couple of instances when I performed recalls. One particular issue was on a certain vehicle. On this vehicle, if the window was left open and the rain came in, it would flood the window switch and cause an electrical fire in the window switches. We had to replace thousands of window switches. That is what a recall looks like. A particular piece could get rainwater in it and it could cause a fire, so that piece had to be replaced.

Another recall I did many times was in a windshield wiper system. There was one piece that could fall apart at some point, so we replaced a lot of windshield wiper motors on a particular vehicle. We got really good at it because we did a lot of them in a short period of time. We were replacing windshield wiper motors to prevent the wipers from failing on the highway and causing a driver not to be able to see where he was going.

Another one I can think of was a shifter recall in a particular car. In this case the shifter might not actually go into park. When the vehicle was shut off and the driver pushed the shifter forward, it would say it was in park, but the transmission might not have actually been in park, and could have been in reverse, which could be bad. We had to replace the shifter, or in some cases reprogram the computer in order to prevent that from happening.

Those are some pictures of what recalls look like. No two of them were ever the same. Sometimes it was a really big job, sometimes not. The window switch, for example, literally took minutes. It took longer to drive the vehicle into the shop than it did to replace the part. Other times it was a really big deal. I can think of one particular recall that was issued because the subframe could rust and break, so we were replacing a subframe under a vehicle and doing a wheel alignment afterwards. That was kind of a big deal.

I thought I would explain to the chamber, from my experience, what a recall actually looks like in terms of the guy who has to do it. Getting paid for it can sometimes be an issue when, as I explained earlier, we are dealing with percentages and the manufacturer just lowers the price. They give the dealership the percentage, but it does not necessarily mean we can get paid.

Those are my comments. I come at it with a little more practical experience, so I look forward to the questions.

Strengthening Motor Vehicle Safety for Canadians ActGovernment Orders

September 19th, 2017 / 5:25 p.m.
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Conservative

Matt Jeneroux Conservative Edmonton Riverbend, AB

Mr. Speaker, it was a pleasure to hear the well-thought-out and articulated response of the member for Peace River—Westlock in response to the bill before us.

The member talked a lot about his past as a mechanic and how he is fighting for his constituents. I was curious to know if he had the same experience I had this past summer, where this was not necessarily the topic that people talked to me about at the doors and in the office. It was all about the tax changes that the government is putting in place.

I am curious if the member had similar conversations, and if this bill should be the priority on which we are focusing. Perhaps we should be focusing on what the rest of Canadians are focusing on, the tax changes the Liberals seem to be jamming down our throats.

Strengthening Motor Vehicle Safety for Canadians ActGovernment Orders

September 19th, 2017 / 5:25 p.m.
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Conservative

Arnold Viersen Conservative Peace River—Westlock, AB

Mr. Speaker, I know that initially, at the beginning of the summer, I had hundreds of farmers coming to me over the cash ticket deferral system. That is how the summer started out. It deteriorated from there, in terms of the outrage over the tax system, particularly when it came to farmers who were looking to sell their farm to their son or daughter. That came out loud and clear.

Then in the last week that I was in the riding, just before I left for Ottawa, we actually had the Slave Lake and District Chamber of Commerce put together an emergency meeting with me to outline their concerns with the new proposed tax changes. There were nearly 100 people in the room, and they were very concerned about where we were going. The number one question was, “Can the government do this? Can it just come in, without listening, and do this?”

It was a very disheartening place to be, in terms of the fact that the government can just come in and do this without listening to what people have to say, changing our lives in northern Alberta significantly, when it comes to tax changes. Farming is probably about a third of the economy where we live. There is a lot of concern right now as what their future looks like.

Farmers have spent a lot of money on their succession planning, which is a big deal. Anyone who comes from northern Alberta knows exactly what succession planning means. They have spent money on it. They have hired consultants to see how to transfer their farm to their children. Basically that entire plan is now up in the air as we go forward with the new tax proposals that have been put forward. There is deep concern in my riding as to where this is going to go. A lot of people feel the carpet has been pulled out from under them.