Budget Implementation Act, 2021, No. 1

An Act to implement certain provisions of the budget tabled in Parliament on April 19, 2021 and other measures

Sponsor

Status

This bill has received Royal Assent and is, or will soon become, law.

Summary

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

Part 1 implements certain income tax measures by

(a) providing relieving measures in connection with COVID-19 in respect of the use by an employee of an employer-provided automobile for the 2020 and 2021 taxation years;

(b) limiting the benefit of the employee stock option deduction for employees of certain employers;

(c) providing an adjustment for payments or repayments of government assistance in determining capital cost allowance for certain zero-emission vehicles;

(d) expanding the scope of the foreign affiliate dumping rules to further their objectives;

(e) providing change in use rules for multi-unit residential properties;

(f) establishing rules for advanced life deferred annuities;

(g) providing for an option to deduct repaid emergency benefit amounts in the year of benefit receipt and clarifying the tax treatment of non-resident beneficiaries;

(h) removing the time limitation for a registered disability savings plan to remain registered after the cessation of a beneficiary’s eligibility for the disability tax credit and modifying grant and bond repayment obligations;

(i) increasing the basic personal amount for certain taxpayers;

(j) providing a temporary special reading of certain rules relating to the child care expense deduction and the disability supports deduction for the 2020 and 2021 taxation years;

(k) providing flow-through share issuers with temporary additional time to incur eligible expenses to be renounced to investors under their flow-through share agreements;

(l) applying the short taxation year rule to the accelerated investment incentive for resource expenditures;

(m) introducing the Canada Recovery Hiring Program refundable tax credit to support the post-pandemic recovery;

(n) amending the employee life and health trust rules to allow for the conversion of health and welfare trusts to employee life and health trusts;

(o) expanding access to the Canada Workers Benefit by revising the applicable eligibility thresholds for the 2021 and subsequent taxation years;

(p) amending the income tax measures providing support for Canadian journalism;

(q) clarifying the definition of shared-custody parent for the purposes of the Canada Child Benefit;

(r) revising the eligibility criteria, as well as the level of subsidization, under the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) and Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS), extending the CEWS and the CERS until September 25, 2021, providing authority to enable the extension of these subsidies until November 30, 2021, and ensuring that the level of CEWS benefits for furloughed employees continues to align with the benefits provided through the Employment Insurance Act until August 28, 2021;

(s) preventing the use by mutual fund trusts of a method of allocating capital gains or income to their redeeming unitholders where the use of that method inappropriately defers tax or converts ordinary income into capital gains;

(t) extending the income tax deferral available for certain patronage dividends paid in shares by an agricultural cooperative corporation to payments made before 2026;

(u) limiting transfers of pensionable service into individual pension plans;

(v) establishing rules for variable payment life annuities;

(w) preventing listed terrorist entities under the Criminal Code from qualifying as registered charities and providing for the suspension or revocation of a charity’s registration where it makes false statements for the purpose of maintaining registration;

(x) ensuring the appropriate interaction of transfer pricing rules and other rules in the Income Tax Act;

(y) preventing non-resident taxpayers from avoiding Canadian dividend withholding tax on compensation payments made under cross-border securities lending arrangements with respect to Canadian shares;

(z) allowing for the electronic delivery of requirements for information to banks and credit unions;

(aa) improving existing rules meant to prevent taxpayers from using derivative transactions to convert ordinary income into capital gains;

(bb) extending to a wider array of eligible automotive equipment and vehicles the 100% capital cost allowance write-off for business investments in certain zero-emission vehicles;

(cc) ensuring that the accelerated investment incentive for depreciable property applies properly in particular circumstances; and

(dd) providing rules for contributions to a specified multi-employer plan for older members.

It also makes related and consequential amendments to the Excise Tax Act, the Air Travellers Security Charge Act, the Excise Act, 2001, the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act, the Income Tax Regulations and the Canada Disability Savings Regulations.

Part 2 implements certain Goods and Services Tax/Harmonized Sales Tax (GST/HST) measures by

(a) temporarily relieving supplies of certain face masks and face shields from the GST/HST;

(b) ensuring that non-resident vendors supplying digital products or services (including traditional services) to consumers in Canada be required to register for the GST/HST and to collect and remit the tax on their taxable supplies to consumers in Canada;

(c) requiring distribution platform operators and non-resident vendors to register under the normal GST/HST rules and to collect and remit the GST/HST in respect of certain supplies of goods shipped from a fulfillment warehouse or another place in Canada;

(d) applying the GST/HST on all supplies of short-term accommodation in Canada facilitated through a digital platform;

(e) expanding the eligibility for the GST rebate for new housing;

(f) expanding the definition of freight transportation service for the purposes of the GST/HST;

(g) extending the application of the drop-shipment rules for the purposes of the GST/HST;

(h) treating virtual currency as a financial instrument for the purposes of the GST/HST; and

(i) clarifying the GST/HST holding corporation rules and expanding those rules to holding partnerships and trusts.

It also makes related and consequential amendments to the New Harmonized Value-added Tax System Regulations, No. 2.

Part 3 implements certain excise measures by increasing excise duty rates on tobacco products by $4.‍00 per carton of 200 cigarettes along with corresponding increases to the excise duty rates on other tobacco products.

Part 4 enacts an Act and amends several Acts in order to implement various measures.

Division 1 of Part 4 amends the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation Act to, among other things,

(a) specify the steps that an assessor must follow when they review a determination of the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation with respect to the payment of compensation to certain persons;

(b) clarify that the determination of whether or not persons are entitled to compensation is to be made in accordance with the regulations;

(c) prevent a person from taking certain actions in relation to certain agreements between the person and a federal member institution by reason only of a monetary default by that institution in the performance of obligations under those agreements if the default occurs in the period between the making of an order directing the conversion of that institution’s shares or liabilities and the occurrence of the conversion;

(d) require certain federal member institutions to ensure that certain provisions of that Act — or provisions that have substantially the same effect as those provisions — apply to certain eligible financial contracts, including those contracts that are subject to the laws of a foreign state;

(e) exempt eligible financial contracts between a federal member institution and certain entities, including Her Majesty in right of Canada, from a provision of that Act that prevents certain actions from being taken in relation to those contracts; and

(f) extend periods applicable to certain restructuring transactions for financial institutions.

It also amends the Payment Clearing and Settlement Act to

(a) specify the steps that an assessor must follow when they review a determination of the Bank of Canada with respect to the payment of compensation to certain persons or entities; and

(b) clarify that systems or arrangements for the exchange of payment messages for the purpose of clearing or settlement of payment obligations may be overseen by the Bank of Canada as clearing and settlement systems.

Finally, it amends not-in-force provisions of the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation Act, enacted by the Budget Implementation Act, 2018, No. 1, so that, under certain circumstances, an error or omission that results in a failure to meet a requirement of the schedule to the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation Act will not prevent a deposit from being considered a separate deposit.

Division 2 of Part 4 amends the Bank of Canada Act to authorize the Bank of Canada to publish certain information about unclaimed amounts.

It also amends the Pension Benefits Standards Act, 1985 with respect to the transfer of pension plan assets relating to the pension benefit credit of any person who cannot be located to, among other things,

(a) limit the circumstances in which such assets may be transferred and specify conditions for the transfer; and

(b) specify the effects of a transfer on any claims that may be made in respect of those assets.

Finally, it amends the Trust and Loan Companies Act and the Bank Act to

(a) include amounts that are not in Canadian currency in the unclaimed amounts regime; and

(b) impose additional requirements on financial institutions in connection with their transfers of unclaimed amounts to the Bank of Canada and communications with the owners of those amounts.

Division 3 of Part 4 amends the Budget Implementation Act, 2018, No. 2 to exclude certain businesses from the application of a provision of the Bank Act that it enacts, which allows certain agreements that have been entered into with banks to be cancelled.

Division 4 of Part 4 amends the Trust and Loan Companies Act, the Bank Act and the Insurance Companies Act to extend the period during which federal financial institutions governed by those Acts may carry on business to June 30, 2025.

Division 5 of Part 4 amends the Justice for Victims of Corrupt Foreign Officials Act (Sergei Magnitsky Law) to

(a) provide that the entities referred to in that Act are no longer required to disclose to the principal agency or body that supervises or regulates them the fact that they do not have in their possession or control any property of a foreign national who is the subject of an order or regulation made under that Act; and

(b) change the frequency with which those entities are required to disclose to the principal agency or body that supervises or regulates them the fact that they have such property in their possession or control from once a month to once every three months.

Division 6 of Part 4 amends the Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Financing Act to

(a) extend the application of Part 1 of that Act to include persons and entities engaged in the business of transporting currency or certain other financial instruments;

(b) provide that the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre make assessments to be paid by persons or entities to which Part 1 applies, based on the amount of certain expenses incurred by the Centre, and to authorize the Governor in Council to make regulations respecting those assessments;

(c) amend the definitions of designated information to include certain information associated with virtual currency transactions and widely held or publicly traded trusts that the Centre can disclose to law enforcement or other governmental bodies;

(d) change the maximum penalties for summary conviction offences;

(e) expand the list of persons or entities that are not eligible for registration with the Centre; and

(f) make other technical amendments.

Division 7 of Part 4 enacts the Retail Payment Activities Act, which establishes an oversight framework for retail payment activities. Among other things, that Act requires certain payment service providers to identify and mitigate operational risks, safeguard end-user funds and register with the Bank of Canada. That Act also provides the Minister of Finance with powers to address risks related to national security that could be posed by payment service providers. This Division also makes related amendments to the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation Act, the Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Financing Act, the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada Act and the Payment Card Networks Act.

Division 8 of Part 4 amends the Pension Benefits Standards Act, 1985 to establish new requirements and grant new regulation-making powers to the Governor in Council with respect to negotiated contribution plans.

Division 9 of Part 4 amends the First Nations Fiscal Management Act to allow First Nations that are borrowing members of the First Nations Finance Authority to assign their rights to certain revenues payable by Her Majesty in right of Canada, for the purpose of securing financing for that Authority’s borrowing members.

Division 10 of Part 4 amends the Federal-Provincial Fiscal Arrangements Act to, among other things, increase the maximum amount of a fiscal stabilization payment that may be made to a province and to make technical changes to the calculation of fiscal stabilization payments.

Division 11 of Part 4 amends the Federal-Provincial Fiscal Arrangements Act to authorize additional payments to the provinces and territories.

Division 12 of Part 4 authorizes payments to be made out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund in relation to Canada’s COVID-19 immunization plan.

Division 13 of Part 4 authorizes payments to be made out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund in relation to infrastructure and amends the heading of Part 9 of the Keeping Canada’s Economy and Jobs Growing Act.

Division 14 of Part 4 authorizes amounts to be paid out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund, to a maximum total amount of $3,056,491,000, for annual payments to Newfoundland and Labrador in accordance with the terms and conditions of the Hibernia Dividend Backed Annuity Agreement.

Division 15 of Part 4 amends the Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador Additional Fiscal Equalization Offset Payments Act to authorize the Minister of Finance to make an additional fiscal equalization offset payment to Nova Scotia for the 2020–2021 fiscal year and to extend that Minister’s authority to make additional fiscal equalization offset payments to Nova Scotia until March 31, 2023.

Division 16 of Part 4 amends the Telecommunications Act to provide that decisions made by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission on whether or not to allocate funding to expand access to telecommunications services in underserved areas are not subject to review under section 12 or 62 of that Act but are subject to review by the Commission on its own initiative. It also amends that Act to provide for the exchange of information within the federal government and with provincial governments for the purpose of coordinating financial support for access to telecommunications services in underserved areas.

Division 17 of Part 4 amends the Canada Small Business Financing Act to, among other things,

(a) specify that lines of credit are loans;

(b) set a limit on the liability of the Minister of Small Business and Tourism in respect of each lender for lines of credit;

(c) remove the restriction excluding not-for-profit businesses, charitable businesses and businesses having as their principal object the furtherance of a religious purpose as eligible borrowers;

(d) increase the maximum amount of all loans that may be made in relation to a borrower under that Act; and

(e) provide that lesser maximum loan amounts may be prescribed by regulation for loans other than lines of credit, lines of credit and prescribed classes of loans.

Division 18 of Part 4 amends the Customs Act to change certain rules respecting the correction of declarations made under section 32.‍2 of that Act, the payment of interest due to Her Majesty and securities required under that Act, and to define the expression “sold for export to Canada” for the purposes of Part III of that Act.

Division 19 of Part 4 amends the Canada–United States–Mexico Agreement Implementation Act to require the concurrence of the Minister of Finance when the Minister designated for the purposes of section 16 of that Act appoints panellists and committee members and proposes the names of individuals for rosters under Chapter 10 of the Canada–United States–Mexico Agreement.

Division 20 of Part 4 amends Part 5 of the Department of Employment and Social Development Act to make certain reforms to the Social Security Tribunal, including

(a) changing the criteria for granting leave to appeal and introducing a de novo model for appeals of decisions of the Income Security Section at the Appeal Division;

(b) giving the Governor in Council the authority to prescribe the circumstances in which hearings may be held in private; and

(c) giving the Chairperson of the Social Security Tribunal the authority to make rules of procedure governing appeals.

Division 21 of Part 4 amends the definition of “previous contractor” in Part I of the Canada Labour Code in order to extend equal remuneration protection to employees who are covered by a collective agreement and who work for an employer that

(a) provides services at an airport to another employer in the air transportation industry; or

(b) provides services to another employer in another industry and at other locations that may be prescribed by regulation.

Division 22 of Part 4 amends Part III of the Canada Labour Code to establish a federal minimum wage of $15 per hour and to provide that if the minimum wage of a province or territory is higher than the federal minimum wage, the employer is to pay a minimum wage that is not less than that higher minimum wage. It also provides that, except in certain circumstances, the federal minimum wage per hour is to be adjusted upwards annually on the basis of the Consumer Price Index for Canada.

Division 23 of Part 4 amends the provisions of the Canada Labour Code respecting leave related to the death or disappearance of a child in cases in which it is probable that the child died or disappeared as a result of a crime, in order to, among other things,

(a) increase the maximum length of leave for a parent of a child who has disappeared from 52 weeks to 104 weeks;

(b) extend eligibility to parents of children who are 18 years of age or older but under 25 years of age; and

(c) limit the exception that applies in the case of a parent of a child who has died as a result of a crime if it is probable that the child was a party to the crime so that the exception applies only with respect to a child who is 14 years of age or older.

Division 24 of Part 4 authorizes the Minister of Employment and Social Development to make a one-time payment to Quebec for the purpose of offsetting some of the costs of aligning the Quebec Parental Insurance Plan with temporary measures set out in Part VIII.‍5 of the Employment Insurance Act.

Division 25 of Part 4 amends the Judges Act to provide that, if the Canadian Judicial Council recommends that a judge be removed from judicial office, the time counted towards the judge’s pension entitlements will be frozen and their pension contributions will be suspended, as of the day on which the recommendation is made. If the recommendation is rejected, the judge’s pension contributions will resume, the time counted towards their pension entitlement will include the suspension period and the judge will be required to make all the contributions that would have been required had the contributions never been suspended.

Division 26 of Part 4 amends the Federal Courts Act and the Tax Court of Canada Act to increase the number of judges for the Federal Court of Appeal by one and the number of judges for the Tax Court of Canada by two. It also amends the Judges Act to authorize the salary for the new Associate Chief Justice for the Trial Division of the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador and the salaries for the following new judges: five judges for the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, two judges for the Supreme Court of British Columbia and two judges for the Court of Queen’s Bench for Saskatchewan.

Division 27 of Part 4 amends the National Research Council Act to provide the National Research Council of Canada with the authority to engage in the production of “drugs” or “devices”, as those terms are defined in the Food and Drugs Act, for the purpose of protecting or improving public health. It also amends that Act to provide authority for the incorporation of corporations and the acquisition of shares in corporations.

Division 28 of Part 4 amends the Department of Employment and Social Development Act in relation to the collection and use of Social Insurance Numbers by the Minister of Labour.

Division 29 of Part 4 amends the Canada Student Loans Act to provide that, during the period that begins on April 1, 2021 and ends on March 31, 2023, no interest is payable by a borrower on a guaranteed student loan.

It also amends the Canada Student Financial Assistance Act to provide that, during the period that begins on April 1, 2021 and ends on March 31, 2023, no interest is payable by a borrower on a student loan.

Finally, it amends the Apprentice Loans Act to provide that, during the period that begins on April 1, 2021 and ends on March 31, 2023, no interest is payable by a borrower on an apprentice loan.

Division 30 of Part 4 confirms the validity of certain regulations in relation to the cancellation or postponement of certain First Nations elections.

Division 31 of Part 4 amends the Old Age Security Act to increase the Old Age Security pension payable to individuals aged 75 and over by 10%. It also provides that any amount payable in relation to a program to provide a one-time payment of $500 to pensioners who are 75 years of age or older may be paid out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund.

Division 32 of Part 4 amends the Public Service Employment Act to, among other things,

(a) require that the establishment and review of qualification standards and the use of assessment methods in respect of appointments include an evaluation of whether there are biases or barriers that disadvantage persons belonging to any equity-seeking group;

(b) provide that audits and investigations may include the determination of whether there are biases or barriers that disadvantage persons belonging to any equity-seeking group; and

(c) give permanent residents the same preference as Canadian citizens in external advertised appointment processes.

Division 33 of Part 4 authorizes the making of payments to the provinces for early learning and child care for the fiscal year beginning on April 1, 2021.

Division 34 of Part 4 amends the Canada Recovery Benefits Act to, among other things,

(a) provide that the maximum number of two-week periods in respect of which a Canada recovery benefit is payable is 25;

(b) reduce the amount of a Canada recovery benefit for a week to $300 in certain circumstances;

(c) provide that certain persons who were paid benefits under the Employment Insurance Act are eligible to be paid a Canada recovery benefit in certain circumstances;

(d) provide that the maximum number of weeks in respect of which a Canada recovery caregiving benefit is payable is 42; and

(e) provide that the Governor in Council may, by regulation, on the recommendation of the Minister of Employment and Social Development and the Minister of Finance, amend certain provisions of that Act to replace the date of September 25, 2021 by a date not later than November 20, 2021.

It also amends the Canada Labour Code to provide that the maximum number of weeks of leave for COVID-19 related caregiving responsibilities is 42.

Finally, it repeals provisions of the Canada Recovery Benefits Regulations and the Canada Labour Standards Regulations.

Division 35 of Part 4 amends the Employment Insurance Act to, among other things,

(a) facilitate access to unemployment benefits for a period of one year by

(i) reducing the number of hours of insurable employment required to qualify for unemployment benefits to a national threshold of 420 hours,

(ii) reducing the amount of earnings from self-employment that a self-employed person is required to have to be eligible to access special unemployment benefits,

(iii) providing that only a claimant’s most recent separation from employment will be considered in determining whether they qualify for unemployment benefits,

(iv) ensuring that earnings paid to a person because of the complete severance of their relationship with their former employer do not extend the person’s benefit period, and

(v) providing for an increase in the maximum number of weeks for which regular unemployment benefits may be paid to a seasonal worker if certain conditions are met; and

(b) extend the maximum number of weeks for which benefits may be paid because of a prescribed illness, injury or quarantine from 15 to 26.

It also amends the Canada Labour Code to, among other things, extend to 27 the maximum number of weeks to which an employee is entitled for a medical leave of absence from employment.

It also amends the Employment Insurance Regulations to, among other things, ensure that, for a period of one year, earnings paid to a person because of the complete severance of their relationship with their former employer do not extend the person’s benefit period or delay payment of benefits to the person.

Finally, it amends the Employment Insurance (Fishing) Regulations to, among other things, reduce, for a period of one year, the amount of earnings that a fisher is required to have to qualify for unemployment benefits.

Division 36 of Part 4 amends the Canada Elections Act to provide that the offences related to the prohibition on making or publishing certain false statements with the intention of affecting the results of an election require that the person or the entity making or publishing the statement knows that the statement in question is false.

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.

Votes

June 23, 2021 Passed 3rd reading and adoption of Bill C-30, An Act to implement certain provisions of the budget tabled in Parliament on April 19, 2021 and other measures
June 21, 2021 Passed Concurrence at report stage of Bill C-30, An Act to implement certain provisions of the budget tabled in Parliament on April 19, 2021 and other measures
June 21, 2021 Failed Bill C-30, An Act to implement certain provisions of the budget tabled in Parliament on April 19, 2021 and other measures (report stage amendment)
June 14, 2021 Passed Tme allocation for Bill C-30, An Act to implement certain provisions of the budget tabled in Parliament on April 19, 2021 and other measures
May 27, 2021 Passed 2nd reading of Bill C-30, An Act to implement certain provisions of the budget tabled in Parliament on April 19, 2021 and other measures

Budget Implementation Act, 2021, No. 1Government Orders

June 22nd, 2021 / 1:30 p.m.
See context

Conservative

Dan Albas Conservative Central Okanagan—Similkameen—Nicola, BC

Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to rise on behalf of the good people of Central Okanagan—Similkameen—Nicola. Let me inform you, Mr. Speaker, that you will have a much more enlightened speaker because I plan on sharing my time with the member for Elgin—Middlesex—London, who, I am sure, will do a fantastic job.

From a parliamentary perspective, we live in dangerous times. I say that because I would like to take us all back to 2015 and a comment that this Prime Minister shared with Canadians. “[W]e are committed to delivering real change in the way that government works”, said the Prime Minister. He followed up with, “It means setting a higher bar for openness and transparency, something needed if this House is to regain the confidence and trust of Canadians.”

When we look at the actions of this Prime Minister today, it is profoundly obvious that this PM had absolutely zero intention of honouring those words to Canadians. In fact, as is so often the case with this Prime Minister, it is all just words. The actions are always at odds with reality. Look at where we are here with this omnibus budget bill from a Prime Minister who had promised he would not use omnibus budget bills, promised he would not use prorogation, and promised he would deliver a balanced budget, cast in stone, in 2019. He also promised openness by default.

I could go on and on, but we are not here today to debate the character of this Prime Minister. We are here to debate the omnibus budget bill, Bill C-30, a bill that the finance minister has repeatedly stated, if it were not to pass, would be the single greatest threat facing Canadians. Honestly, the finance minister said that multiple times in question period. Here we have a government that tells us we do not need a budget for over two years, and suddenly not having a budget is the greatest economic threat facing Canadians. What unbelievable arrogance that is.

In reality, this budget is really about furthering the Liberals' electoral chances. I would submit it that does not do so. It is not in the long-term best interests of Canadians. However, in my view, this is a Prime Minister who will always place his needs and those of his powerful friends and insiders ahead of the needs of everyday Canadians.

People should not just take my word for it, but read very carefully the many criticisms of this budget bill. They come from prominent people not accustomed to criticizing Liberal government budget bills: Parliamentary Budget Officer, Yves Giroux; former Bank of Canada governors, both David Dodge and Mark Carney; and even former senior Liberal adviser Robert Asselin. They have all provided well-articulated concerns over this budget. To summarize them, ultimately this bill proposes to spend money that the government does not have to spend and, according to these critics and many other experts, does not not need to spend.

However, that is what this Prime Minister does. He believes he can spend his way out of any problem or circumstance, but that in itself creates problems. Let us look at our communities' local downtown. If they are anything like the communities in my riding, there are increasingly more help-wanted signs out there. A huge number of small and medium-sized business owners have said they cannot get people to work.

I am going to share something with this place. Recently, my Summerland office was contacted by a woman, and we will call her “Nathalie”. Nathalie is very concerned about her brother, whom we will call “Doug”. Doug has a trade. Unlike some trades, Doug got very busy during the pandemic. Last fall, Doug decided to quit his job so he could collect the CERB. Granted the system was not supposed to work that way, but it was, by design, set up so people like Doug absolutely could quit their job and still collect it. At the time, Doug told his family it was just for the winter months and he would go back to work in the spring. Over the winter months, Doug began drinking. His drinking led to the loss of his place. The family now says Doug lives in a recreational vehicle. He collects the Canada recovery benefit and spends most of the time drinking. Doug now refuses to return to the workplace. Doug's position is that he paid the government EI and taxes for years and now he is owed this money, and not working while he is collecting benefits is his way of getting even with the government.

I am not suggesting for a moment that everyone collecting benefits is in Doug's situation, but speaking with many who work with individuals in addiction and recovered, many will share privately just how damaging the CRB has been and how it has derailed many recovering addicts. The problem remains that the Liberal government has absolutely no exit plan that ultimately will help people like Doug return to the workforce.

Indeed, according to the Prime Minister, people like Doug do not exist. Some will say if only employers paid more, we would not have this problem. However, in Doug's case, he had a trade that provided net take-home pay of $60,000. Doug can make much more money returning to work, however, the $2,000 a month he collects now is enough money that Doug can choose not to work.

I come back to all those help-wanted signs. A local small business owner told me his small business could survive the pandemic, but he was less sure it could survive the government assistance programs like CRB. I am not raising this to be partisan, I am raising this because this budget by design extends all of these benefits into September and it does this by design because the Prime Minister wants to go into an election where everyone is still getting paid those benefits. He wants to use the payment of these benefits as an election issue. That is ultimately what the bill proposes; that and massive amounts of spending that even former Liberals and friendly experts have said is excessive and largely unnecessary.

However, when it comes to winning power, we know that the Prime Minister is capable of basically anything. We know from his many promises in 2015, he will say basically anything. We know from his governance, from prorogation to multiple Liberal filibusters, to being found in contempt of Parliament, he is capable of doing anything to remain in power. Indeed, Bill C-30 is just another example of this.

Is there seriously a person in this place who does not believe that Canada needs an exit plan to get Canadians back into the workforce? I am starting to think that maybe there are some who believe we can continue on this current path that the Parliamentary Budget Office has repeatedly told us is not sustainable. Do we listen? Bill C-30 suggests we are not listening. Indeed, even raising these issues is rarely done.

We all know that there are people like Doug out there who are struggling. This budget fails people like Doug. This budget fails the many small business owners who need Doug back in the workplace. Let us hope that he can rejoin the workforce. His sister Nathalie blames the government programs. She pointed out EI, as one example, never used to work this way. She asked how long can the government continue to pay people benefits that they do not qualify for. It is a fair question, yet I do not hear any member of the Liberal government ask this question.

The Parliamentary Budget Officer has raised it. Various ministers have promised to address it, but when the opposition has raised it, they never do. We all know that the EI system ultimately has to be sustainable and currently it is not sustainable. The government has no plan to address this. This should trouble all of us because ultimately we need to defend the integrity of the programs that Canadians depend on. We are collectively failing to do that.

It is just not responsible. This is ultimately what troubles me so greatly about Bill C-30. It is great for a Prime Minister trying to stay in power, however, it maximizes short-term political gain for long-term pain that will be felt by future generations of Canadians.

Somehow in this place, we have drifted away from long-term thinking, of building a foundation for the success and prosperity of future generations of Canada. Worse, we have seen this movie before, as it was the former Liberal governments that made some very difficult and unpopular decisions, but necessary decisions. Many of what I refer to as traditional Liberals, at least in my riding, wonder where the Liberal Party has gone.

Before I close, I will leave with one final note. When the finance minister introduced this budget, she told us that we must “build a more resilient Canada; better, more fair, more prosperous, and more innovative”.

We should all ask ourselves who has been governing this country for the past five years to have made Canada so unresilient, so unfair, so unprosperous and so lacking in innovation. We all know the answer to the question. This budget bill, Bill C-30, simply offers more of the same.

Budget Implementation Act, 2021, No. 1Government Orders

June 22nd, 2021 / 1:40 p.m.
See context

NDP

Richard Cannings NDP South Okanagan—West Kootenay, BC

Mr. Speaker, I know the member for Central Okanagan—Similkameen—Nicola is a real champion for the wine industry, which is very important in the Okanagan, and has a private member's bill that could help the wine industry. I am worried that, with the constant rumours about an election, that private member's bill will not make it onto the Order Paper in this Parliament.

I would like to give the member the opportunity to talk about the situation that we have seen with the wine industry losing the excise tax exemption through a WTO challenge. The government has a promise of funding in this budget, $101 million over two years, but now we hear it has back-loaded that promise so that only a third of the money will come in the coming fiscal year. This is a time when the wine industry has really been suffering, like a lot of sectors.

I am wondering if the member could comment on that decision by the government.

Budget Implementation Act, 2021, No. 1Government Orders

June 22nd, 2021 / 1:40 p.m.
See context

Conservative

Dan Albas Conservative Central Okanagan—Similkameen—Nicola, BC

Mr. Speaker, obviously small family wineries, small craft breweries and artisan distillers are hurting. The foot traffic is gone, tourism has dropped, people are not buying from them and they are often going to liquor monopolies, so this is a big issue.

My Bill C-260 deals with trying to get around provincial liquor monopolies. I will let the member know that the leader of the official opposition gave a speech to the Penticton and Wine Country Chamber of Commerce where the question was asked: What if this bill dies on the Order Paper? Guess what, we are going to be campaigning on this so that we can bring some resiliency and opportunities to that industry.

In 2015, I said that the Liberals would say anything, then disregard what they said, do what is right for them and not the long-term interests of Canadians. They are doing the same thing to the wine industry, and it is wrong.

Budget Implementation Act, 2021, No. 1Government Orders

June 22nd, 2021 / 1:45 p.m.
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Conservative

James Cumming Conservative Edmonton Centre, AB

Mr. Speaker, there is lots of talk in this budget about training for new jobs, green jobs, jobs that are not here yet. Does the member have any idea what specific jobs the government is talking about that people will be retrained for? In my province, people want to know where these new jobs are, how they are going to get started and what these training programs are going to do for them in the near future, not looking out five years.

Budget Implementation Act, 2021, No. 1Government Orders

June 22nd, 2021 / 1:45 p.m.
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Conservative

Dan Albas Conservative Central Okanagan—Similkameen—Nicola, BC

Mr. Speaker, this is one area where the government continually talks a game about innovation and skills. Kevin Page, former parliamentary budget officer, is now heading up the University of Ottawa's Institute of Fiscal Studies and Democracy. It is a think tank that analyzes these issues. When the government first came to power, it was presented with a report from the think tank that showed that for years it has been funding employment skills training with tens of billions of dollars and it has never been reviewed. When we look through it, and I met with the expert who penned the report, there are no metrics. The government continually adds more rhetoric and more money, but there are never any results.

That is the big problem. We are not thinking in terms of the long-term interests of Canadians. With our demographics and the pandemic debt, we have to start asking the tough questions. We cannot let the Liberal government and the Prime Minister slide by with nice words and a quick wave. My community deserves better than the government is offering.

Budget Implementation Act, 2021, No. 1Government Orders

June 22nd, 2021 / 1:45 p.m.
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Conservative

Karen Vecchio Conservative Elgin—Middlesex—London, ON

Mr. Speaker, once again, I get to speak to you while you are in the Chair. To anyone who is tuning in right now, I wish all the best to the Speaker in the Chair right now. I know that the next chapter of your life will be very fulsome. It has been wonderful working with you. Hopefully, we will be able to work together again in September.

I will continue with some of my thanks. I know so many people are involved in making sure that this chamber can run. I am thinking of all the House staff, the interpreters about whom we have heard so much, making sure we are not popping in the mike, the technical support folks for the hybrid virtual Parliament who have been very busy, and the table staff, especially one of my favourites, André Gagnon. I have always said that he is going to be stuck in my living room forever, because one of my favourite photos is of him and me at my second swearing in. Thanks to all of the great people working in our House and making sure the democracy of Canada continues.

It truly has been a great pleasure serving in the 43rd Parliament, 2nd session, as the deputy House leader for the Conservative Party. There has been a lot of learning to do and a lot of procedural things, as well. All of us are working together to get that done.

I thank my colleague who spoke before me, because when we talk about results, that is something we really focus on. I would like to see results. When I first got here in 2015, we would talk about the government. We would talk about what we had done in government for nine and a half years, and some of the positive changes that we saw here in Canada. Some very good legislation was put forward. Every single time I was on a panel, I recall that the words used against me were, “Ms. Vecchio, that's rich.” Those were the words of our Liberal government members, all of the time: “That is rich,” any time we asked for something to be justified or asked for verification on things.

The government just does not want to answer. When we see an omnibus bill like this budget implementation bill, we should not be surprised. When we try to have debates, we should not be surprised when we do not get answers. I know that shortly we will be going into Question Period where that will continue.

In this Parliament specifically, we have seen things, such as the WE scandal, prorogation and Bill C-19 being done wrong. I want to focus on that. As of yesterday, Bill C-19 was reported back and tabled in the House of Commons. The fear that I have, and the fear that I think so many other Canadians should have, is that we are putting forward bills that have no witnesses coming to talk about these things. When we wanted to discuss Bill C-19, there was a motion to have important organizations representing everyone from seniors to people with disabilities look at this legislation and ask what it means. We were looking to speak to chief electoral officers who were on the ground and could talk about some of the things we needed to do.

What would a pandemic election look like in London North Centre or London West? I am looking at the member of Parliament for London West right now. What would it look like for London West? What would it look like for Elgin—Middlesex—London? I am seeing that special member look at me right now. I would like to thank her for all of the work that she has done. It has been great having a person beside me in London West who is part of the government and who has always ensured that when I give her a call, she knows what is happening in Elgin—Middlesex—London.

On behalf of all the constituents of Elgin—Middlesex—London, on behalf of my municipalities, I know I can call that member and say that we need an announcement, and the member for London West will ensure that announcement is made. If it is sitting on a minister's table, she is one person I know who can get it done. I really appreciate all of her hard work.

Moving on, when I am talking about some important things, I see that we are truly not doing what we should always be doing. We talk about due diligence. Last night, I got to listen to the member for Winnipeg North talk about the Conservatives and how awful they are. Although the word “corrupt” was not being used, he loved to use the word “obstruction.”

I will tell Canadians what obstruction looks like. Obstruction looks like 101 days in a filibuster when we are talking about prorogation of the government. That is what obstruction looks like. I love looking at the member, because he is laughing. I think it is because he knows exactly what I am getting at. He knows. He has been in politics for over 30 years. He knows how to wing this. He knows when we are playing these games, and we know that when the member for Winnipeg North is coming to a committee, the plan is to filibuster. When some of the greatest speakers who can speak 700 or 800 times in Parliament are brought in, we know the government is bringing in the big guns to filibuster. I would like to commend my colleague for Winnipeg North because that is exactly the type of work that they are able to do.

We have seen committee reports delayed. As the former chair of the status of women and as the former shadow minister of the status of women, I am really concerned that the defence committee could not table a report. Why it could not table a report, I think, has to do with the obstruction in committee. There has not just been obstruction in the Procedure and House Affairs committee. There has been obstruction in the committees for defence, ethics and any other committee in which the reports and information going forward are not to the liking of the government. That is just the type of thing that I have been seeing.

I do a lot of outreach as well in my riding. When reflecting on this budget, what do we see and what is important? I like to go out and speak to my constituents. We do a lot of householders. We do a lot of mailers and get a lot of information back. I would say that we probably got the most information back ever from replies to our last householder. We looked at that data. Do not worry. We were not using Liberalist. We actually looked at this data in our own office to see what my constituents were saying. I did not send it off to somebody to ask them to please look at it analytically and then let us know, while targeting my voters. I actually wanted to hear what they have to say. It is not just about how I am going to get their vote the next time. I want to be sure that I am serving them with a purpose.

However, 66% of our respondents believe there should be an increase in health care funding to the provinces. The government can talk about the funding put forward through this pandemic when it comes to health care. It did have to put some forward, but why? It was not prepared for a pandemic. It had taken some of the money and it had taken some of the programs. We know that the system to alert us of a coming pandemic and its impacts was not there. The information we should have been able to receive was not there because of some cuts and things they were doing while thinking that it was not important.

Sixty-six percent of our respondents believe there needs to be more money put into this health care system, but in this budget we do not see an increase in health care. We can see some things when it comes to pandemic spending, but as the former speaker talked about, we need to look at long-term plans as well. They cannot just be short-term. They cannot just be about how we get people voting for us today. It is about how we can provide good lives and better opportunities for them.

Coming from a farming community, one thing I always talk about is sowing the field. How do we prepare the field so that people can be the best crop possible? How do we encourage great growth? I look at all of these programs coming forward from the government and I am very concerned. What do we see for these people moving forward? I look at my son, who is 27 years old, and know that if he were to try to purchase a house in Elgin—Middlesex—London and put down the $20,000 he has been able to save, it would get him nothing. Why? It is because we have seen a 46% increase in housing prices in my area alone.

Those are some of the things that I think the government needs to tackle, along with the fact that we see inflation going higher and higher. That inflation is going to impact us greatly, especially if the interest rates go up.

I look at my own children who want to buy houses. The rates for getting a mortgage are awesome, but how can they buy houses when the prices start at almost half a million dollars? How are they ever going to get into the housing market and out of renting? I think that 55% of renters have been paying more in the last six months than they were before. How are people able to move forward and go up the housing ladder? How will they be able to go from being renters to being home owners and into those next homes for retirement? How will they be able to do that? I just do not see the path, unfortunately. I am very concerned with that.

We have 73% of respondents who were concerned about Bill C-10, which we voted on last night. At about 1:30 a.m. we saw that some amendments went through. We also saw the bill pass, unfortunately. I can tell colleagues that in my riding of Elgin—Middlesex—London this was an issue about which I heard from tons of my constituents. They said they did not want Bill C-10, and that they believed it needed to be amended. The amendments we put forward did not, unfortunately, go through.

Finally, 86% of respondents were concerned about the level of debt in this budget. These are the types of things I talk about.

Budget Implementation Act, 2021, No. 1Government Orders

June 22nd, 2021 / 1:55 p.m.
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Winnipeg North Manitoba

Liberal

Kevin Lamoureux LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the President of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada and Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs and to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, when I reflect on standing committees, the potential within them is fairly significant. Some standing committees perform exceptionally well and produce fantastic reports for Canadians.

I am wondering if the member could provide her thoughts on another situation in which we can do fine work if we take out the partisan politics. I am not reflecting on a specific committee, but generally speaking, would she not agree we can see some positive work come out of standing committees when the partisan politics are put to the side, for a little while anyway?

Budget Implementation Act, 2021, No. 1Government Orders

June 22nd, 2021 / 1:55 p.m.
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Conservative

Karen Vecchio Conservative Elgin—Middlesex—London, ON

Mr. Speaker, I am actually also looking right now on my screen at the Chair of the Standing Committee on the Status of Women. I am the former chair of the status of women committee. Last July we met on July 7 or July 8, I believe, before prorogation. We had a standing committee that worked really well together. It was a minority Parliament so we had a variety of different views. The member for London—Fanshawe was on the committee and we had members from the Toronto area. It was a really good mix.

The report we would have tabled right before prorogation was fantastic, but it has a lot to do with what the interests are. We know in some committees there are topics we really want to work on and then there are committees that are a bit more partisan, so I absolutely agree with the member.

It is always a delight to work with the member for Winnipeg North. He keeps us going.

Budget Implementation Act, 2021, No. 1Government Orders

June 22nd, 2021 / 3:50 p.m.
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Yukon Yukon

Liberal

Larry Bagnell LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages (Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency)

Madam Speaker, I am happy to speak from the traditional territory of the Kwanlin Dun First Nation and the Ta'an Kwach'an Council. As tomorrow is the last day that Parliament will sit before the summer, I want to thank all Yukoners, again, for the great honour they have provided me to represent them. It is a very eclectic riding, which makes it an even bigger honour. With 14 unique first nations, we are dealing with over 50 countries in immigration. It has the largest icefields outside the polar caps; the highest mountains in Canada; the world's greatest gold rush; the greatest poet, Robert Service; and the great painter, Jim Robb. Most important, the people are very caring, which is why it is such a great honour to represent them.

I will not use all my time. The budget is so important and we need to get it done quickly, which I think members realize. I will talk quickly and try to limit what I have to say to some highlights.

First, the $3.8 billion toward 35,000 more affordable units is very important. I made a number of big announcements related to housing, even before the budget. It is very exciting for my riding.

Another big investment is the $3 billion to extend sickness benefits from 15 to 26 weeks. There are also flexible EI provisions to help people through the pandemic, which are being extended until the fall of 2022.

The Nutrition north Canada subsidy program is being expanded. It provides nutritious foods to those in the Arctic and remote communities as they cannot get food for a reasonable price. That is very exciting.

I could spend my whole speech just on climate change. I am sure no one objects to the money, $17 billion we have provided and the support to the resource sector for mining, forestry, etc. to transition to a clean economy. I am sure no one objects to the zero-emission technologies like hydrogen that we are supporting and renewable energies. There is a big tax cut to clean energy technology producers. Hopefully with that $17 billion we can also help get mines that are off the grid in the very remote areas like my area off diesel.

Another area I could spend my whole speech on are the $18 billion for indigenous people. People will remember the Kelowna accord and the historic $5 billion proposed by Paul Martin, one of the greatest prime ministers in history. This is $18 billion. I will just mention two items of the many. One is over $4 billion for indigenous infrastructure. Another area is community policing and safety.

I want to give a big-shout out to Chief Doris Bill of the Kwanlin Dun First Nation as well as Gina Nagano and the Selkirk First Nation. They have provided some great leadership, and innovative and very successful community policing.

I am very happy with the IRAP expansion. It is one of the most successful programs in Canada, and more than in any other government's history, and harnesses industrial research excellence. For NGOs and charities, where there are seldom things in budgets, there is a social financing fund of $200 million; a Canada community revitalization fund; $50 million for getting ready for the social financing fund, and even a social bond. Looking at those and the green bond of maybe $5 billion on the first issue, NGOs and charities will also be eligible for the small business financing fund.

I think everyone in rural Canada too is pretty excited about the recent announcement of the rural transportation fund. I am very happy that the declining debt-to-GDP ratio makes it possible for us to help so many people and businesses that are in need.

I want to move on to to the north. On top of everything else, there are things that are particularly exciting for us in the north. One is the new exciting community revitalization fund for main streets, farmers markets and other gathering spaces that underpin local economies. There are $500 million to help people in these rural communities. If someone is in a little village, a hamlet, a town or a small NGO, this is specifically for them. They should start getting those applications ready for this brand new community revitalization fund.

What is really exciting for the northern half of Canada, is the very large northern travel allowance deduction. Before this, only people whose employers gave them a travel allowance and put it on their T4 slip could access it, but now all northerners will be able to access to it, which is very exciting.

The biggest employer in my riding is tourism as a private sector employer. The historic, first-time ever $1 billion dedicated to tourism is very crucial and exciting. There are $200 million for small festivals, small cultural events, heritage celebrations, local museums and amateur sporting events, which is perfect for my riding. We have a lot of those. For the bigger cities, there is also another $200 million for all the same events but in bigger cities. The $500 million tourism relief fund will help tourism businesses adapt their products and service, and meet public health requirements.

Then specifically in my riding is mining, which is the biggest GDP since the gold rush. Its biggest ask was help for hydroelectricity. The finance minister came through with $40.4 million for hydroelectricity studies and for preparation in the north. Also, the Yukon government has one of the most effective climate change plans, and we are giving $25 million to that.

A lot of people probably do not know that all five species of Pacific salmon: chinook, sockeye, coho, chum and pink, come into the Yukon through the Alsek-Tatshenshini drainage, or the Yukon River, the longest salmon run in the world, 2,000 miles. Therefore, historic amount of $647 million for salmon is very exciting. In fact, I had a first nations organization contact me a couple weeks ago, happy that the consultations had already started with it.

The northern trade corridor fund is essential for infrastructure for the north, $1.9 billion in the budget for that of which the north get 15%. Considering we are less than half of 1% of the population, this is tremendous support for the north as are funds for the polar continental shelf for Arctic research.

The work to lower credit card interchange fees and to have those fees the same for small businesses as large businesses is music to our ears as is the $146 million for women entrepreneurs. We have a higher average in Yukon of women entrepreneurs.

The critical mineral strategy, which I do not have time to go into as much as I would like to right now, is very important, again, mining, which is so important to our economy in the north. Mines like Victoria Gold are a very big support.

There are small business financing changes, with working capital lines of credit now being allowed, and lending against intellectual property, which would be great for our large NorthLight Innovation Centre. The digital adoption program would bring us into the new economy, with many young helpers for businesses, potential zero-interest loans and grants to help transition.

To get into the new economy, we have a plan. I am glad the Conservatives are onside for a long-term prosperity growth budget, which is exactly what this is, with money for food security; indigenous and women entrepreneurs; an artificial intelligence strategy; the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research; a quantum strategy; the Photonics Fabrication Centre; business-led R and D through colleges; Mitacs for 85,000 placements; CanCode; the net-zero accelerator; the clean-growth hub; support for Measurement Canada; strategic innovation funds; Elevated IP; the strategic intellectual property program review; innovation superclusters; data in the digital world; Stats Canada data gaps; and support for the Standards Council of Canada.

I think most people in this place and the other place know how important it is to get this budget through, and that a number of major supports are going to expire in eight days, including the wage subsidy and the rent subsidy. There are 447,000 employers that have accessed the wage subsidy; five million people in Canada need it to put food on the table, and 192,000 organizations for rent subsidy. The Canada recovery benefit will be extended for 12 more weeks, and the Canada recovery hiring benefit would not be able to go ahead without it.

People realize the importance of getting this bill through. Those programs will expire in eight days if we do not get this through today or tomorrow. Even the Conservative member for Leeds—Grenville—Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes said yesterday that a number of our expenditures were great, like the County Road 43, recreation projects like the new arena in Prescott, the Vincent de Paul project in Brockville, with affordable housing for seniors. They will ask for many more government funds for Gananoque, Westport, Rideau Lakes and North Grenville.

For all these reasons and with these important investments, I hope all parties will support this bill that would help so many workers who are still in desperate need and so many businesses that need support to get through the last part of this pandemic, to ensure these programs do not expire and all the initiatives that can get help us into the new, modern digital economy to create even more jobs. Eighty per cent of jobs have already been brought back, but much more needs to be done.

Budget Implementation Act, 2021, No. 1Government Orders

June 22nd, 2021 / 4 p.m.
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Conservative

Jeremy Patzer Conservative Cypress Hills—Grasslands, SK

Madam Speaker, the budget references rural and remote communities. I have a very large rural riding and so does the member. I am wondering if he wants to comment further about what this budget would do or, in my opinion, would not do for rural and remote communities. Maybe he has something he would like to share with the House that will benefit rural and remote Canadians.

Budget Implementation Act, 2021, No. 1Government Orders

June 22nd, 2021 / 4 p.m.
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Liberal

Larry Bagnell Liberal Yukon, YT

Madam Speaker, I emphasized in my speech things like the new community revitalization fund, $500 million for small villages, hamlets and NGOs. There has not been a fund like this recently to which small organizations will be able to apply. The rural transportation fund is brand new and exciting for rural Canada. There are some agriculture initiatives like food subsistence funding. The increase to the northern food security program is very exciting. There will be hydroelectric generation for far more remote areas. Remote air transport in the north is helpful right across the country to keep small communities connected that depend on it for their supplies. The regional development agencies have helped thousands of businesses in remote Canada.

Budget Implementation Act, 2021, No. 1Government Orders

June 22nd, 2021 / 4 p.m.
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Bloc

Sébastien Lemire Bloc Abitibi—Témiscamingue, QC

Madam Speaker, I am pleased to hear from the parliamentary secretary that there is a fund for rural, remote and northern regions.

The problem with federal funding is that it uses the same approach from coast to coast to coast, as they like to say. Every region has different needs, especially rural, remote and northern regions.

Will this funding take a one-size-fits-all approach, or will it be at least somewhat tailored to the circumstances of each region?

Will the regions be empowered to take charge of their destiny, influence the program content and have access to the types of funding they need from the different types of programs?

Budget Implementation Act, 2021, No. 1Government Orders

June 22nd, 2021 / 4 p.m.
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Liberal

Larry Bagnell Liberal Yukon, YT

Madam Speaker, to my understanding, the answer is yes. This is going to be a very flexible program that will be targeted at those who have less access. There is up to 75% support for it. It will help with the needs of small communities. With the RRRF approvals by the regional development agencies, there are 7,000 projects in Quebec and over a million jobs have been created, and 173,000 business have the CEBA loan grants. The regional development agency in Quebec is a reason for the money being provided to regional development agencies, as it is totally in tune with the local economy and the people. Instead of the direction coming from Ottawa, it is received by local employees.

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June 22nd, 2021 / 4:05 p.m.
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NDP

Gord Johns NDP Courtenay—Alberni, BC

Madam Speaker, I want to thank my colleague especially for talking about the climate crisis. Earlier our colleague from Cowichan—Malahat—Langford talked about indigenous communities in B.C. that were announcing their intention to take back control over resource stewardship of their traditional territories. Many of these territories have ancient old growth rainforests, watersheds, estuaries and headlands that are critical for our planet's biodiversity and are absolutely essential when it comes to fighting climate change.

In this budget, $2.3 billion were budgeted for the nature legacies program over five years, which is clearly not enough. Seven times that was spent to twin the Trans Mountain pipeline. To support indigenous-led initiatives and indigenous protected areas to protect ancient old growth rainforests and the watersheds, the government needs to commit more resources. Instead of quantity in terms of size of lands or protected areas, it needs to look at really important climate mitigation pieces and quality, instead of just quantity.

Does my colleague agree that the government needs to provide more resources and work more closely with indigenous communities, the provinces, local governments and stakeholders to create a conservation economy that protects these critical ecosystems, much more than it committed in this budget?

Budget Implementation Act, 2021, No. 1Government Orders

June 22nd, 2021 / 4:05 p.m.
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Liberal

Larry Bagnell Liberal Yukon, YT

Madam Speaker, of course we support the very important role indigenous communities play in protecting the environment. As the member mentioned size, we are protecting record amounts of land and water. Also, there are record amounts of funding to support the nature funds he mentioned, which support the increases of protected areas to the record levels they are at now and will continue to be.

In the fall economic statement, I believe, is our mandate to increase indigenous guardians because of the important role they play. I do not know what happens in other ridings, but in my riding of Yukon, almost all the indigenous communities are really showing leadership on climate change and accessing our program to help indigenous communities get off diesel. They have wonderful projects to get off greenhouses gases with wind, solar and biodiesel. They are really showing leadership, and that is why we are happy to support them in any way we can with the funds we are providing.