Thank you, Mr. Chair. It's good to see you again. I know we saw each other once in a while on the agriculture committee, but it's good to be here.
I just want to tie into the question of my colleague Mr. Liepert about the carbon tax. We have a letter from a premier of a province in this country, which was released today. It relates to transfer payments being connected to carbon tax. His letter references a document from the finance department and it talks about one of the issues. This is from the finance department's document dated October 14, 2016, and this is how it's relevant to today's discussion of the current budget. I presume the discussion would have been around the time of the budget discussion.
This is in your document:
One of the issues being looked in the discussion ahead of the 2019 renewal of the Equalization program is a change to the treatment of carbon revenues within the program.
That's the transfer payment program.
The premier of Saskatchewan is concerned that this is being tied together in some shape or form. I, along with many other Canadians, am concerned with carbon tax, period, let alone with its being tied to the equalization program. I'll quote the letter from Premier Wall:
I am writing to seek your assurance that there will be no linkage by the federal government between the provincial carbon tax policies and the federal transfer payments or any other type of federal payments to provinces, such as infrastructure funding. Any such linkage would be a serious attack on federal-provincial relations in Canada.
My question to you is this: Has there been any discussion about this particular topic within the discussion of the current budget, considering the time?
Anyone can feel free to answer.