This week, I changed much of the tech behind this site. If you see anything that looks like a bug, please let me know!

Evidence of meeting #47 for Government Operations and Estimates in the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament’s site, as are the minutes.) The winning word was million.

A video is available from Parliament.

On the agenda

MPs speaking

Also speaking

Daniel Jean  Deputy Minister, Department of Canadian Heritage
René Bouchard  Executive Director, Portfolio Affairs, Department of Canadian Heritage
Robert Hertzog  Director General, Financial Management Branch, Department of Canadian Heritage
Anne-Marie Robinson  President, Public Service Commission of Canada
Guy Giguère  Chairperson, Public Service Staffing Tribunal
Lisanne Lacroix  Registrar and Deputy Head, Public Servants Disclosure Protection Tribunal
Casper Bloom  Chairperson, Public Service Labour Relations Board
Clerk of the Committee  Mr. Marc-Olivier Girard

4:15 p.m.

Deputy Minister, Department of Canadian Heritage

Daniel Jean

As we have said before, the cuts, the reductions that are referred to in the context of Library and Archives, come from the deficit reduction action plan, to which most federal organizations and departments have contributed. They have also come from some internal reorganization.

Of course, I'm sure that if you were to ask the archivist to come here, he would tell you that what he's trying to do is what I'm trying to do in my own department, which is to restore financial sustainability so that we can spend most of our time and energy focusing on our mission.

4:15 p.m.

NDP

Linda Duncan NDP Edmonton Strathcona, AB

Would you like a minute, Pierre?

Go ahead.

4:15 p.m.

NDP

Pierre Nantel NDP Longueuil—Pierre-Boucher, QC

Good afternoon. I know I only have one minute, but I will take the time that remains in the next round of questions.

I would like to talk about the games hosting program, funding for which has been increased by approximately $3 million. Is that related to preparations for the 2015 Pan American Games?

4:15 p.m.

Deputy Minister, Department of Canadian Heritage

Daniel Jean

There is nothing in the 2012 main estimates concerning the Pan American Games, but there are votes in the supplementary estimates related to the fact that we are in the process of preparing for the Pan American Games. Sports funding remains the same. The deficit reduction action plan has had no impact on sports.

4:15 p.m.

NDP

Pierre Nantel NDP Longueuil—Pierre-Boucher, QC

What is the role of the games hosting program directorate in the holding of the Pan Am Games in Toronto?

4:15 p.m.

Deputy Minister, Department of Canadian Heritage

Daniel Jean

It is not a directorate, but rather a hosting program. There are various types of hosting. There are the major events such as the Olympic Games and Pan American Games. As you know, we will be hosting the FIFA Women's World Cup in a few years. There are also intermediate and local events. The games hosting program enables us to support the communities that want to host these sports events.

4:15 p.m.

NDP

Pierre Nantel NDP Longueuil—Pierre-Boucher, QC

How many Sports Canada employees do you think will be working on preparations for the Pan Am Games?

4:15 p.m.

Deputy Minister, Department of Canadian Heritage

Daniel Jean

We have formed a secretariat.

Mr. Hertzog, do you know the number of people?

4:15 p.m.

Robert Hertzog Director General, Financial Management Branch, Department of Canadian Heritage

The total cost is approximately $1 million. There will be 16 positions in that secretariat.

4:15 p.m.

NDP

The Chair NDP Pat Martin

Your time has concluded. Thank you very much.

Ron Cannan is next for the Conservatives.

May 28th, 2012 / 4:15 p.m.

Conservative

Ron Cannan Conservative Kelowna—Lake Country, BC

Thank you for your intervention and for updating our committee.

I just wanted to pick up on a question from my colleague, Mr. Armstrong, on Katimavik. I was city counsellor for nine years before being MP for Kelowna—Lake Country for the last six and a half years, and I worked with some of the groups that came through. I wrote a letter of support a few years ago to keep the program in existence, but my understanding is that the request was made to the organization to look at revamping their structure to see other ways of generating revenue, maybe possibly having some of the students participate, but there was no other proposal. It was basically 97% or 98% funded through the federal government. Is that correct?

4:15 p.m.

Deputy Minister, Department of Canadian Heritage

Daniel Jean

Most of the funding was still coming from the government, yes.

4:15 p.m.

Conservative

Ron Cannan Conservative Kelowna—Lake Country, BC

And there were no other proposals presented?

4:15 p.m.

Deputy Minister, Department of Canadian Heritage

4:15 p.m.

Conservative

Ron Cannan Conservative Kelowna—Lake Country, BC

As far as the deficit reduction action plan is concerned, you said there were 83 positions specifically for archives as a result of that review?

4:15 p.m.

Deputy Minister, Department of Canadian Heritage

Daniel Jean

For archives, yes.

4:15 p.m.

Conservative

Ron Cannan Conservative Kelowna—Lake Country, BC

Overall it was how many positions?

4:15 p.m.

Executive Director, Portfolio Affairs, Department of Canadian Heritage

René Bouchard

I talked about 1,150, but it's actually 1,115 positions overall within the organization.

4:15 p.m.

Conservative

Ron Cannan Conservative Kelowna—Lake Country, BC

Okay, thanks for that clarification.

What do you see as the biggest challenge for the department moving forward through the next three years as we work towards a balanced budget?

4:15 p.m.

Deputy Minister, Department of Canadian Heritage

Daniel Jean

You mean internally?

4:15 p.m.

Conservative

Ron Cannan Conservative Kelowna—Lake Country, BC

Meeting the needs of Canadians.

4:15 p.m.

Deputy Minister, Department of Canadian Heritage

Daniel Jean

That's why modernization and transformation is so important. We would like to be able to give easier access online to our clients and be able to process grants and contributions much faster than we are right now. We are still operating what I would call a system from the previous generation.

4:20 p.m.

Conservative

Ron Cannan Conservative Kelowna—Lake Country, BC

My local art gallery, Kelowna Art Gallery, is working, like so many, in partnership with the community, with the city, and one of the areas the art gallery manager mentioned was the insurance aspect of transferring exhibits from one community or from the archives to the art gallery. Is that through the Canada Council for the Arts? Are there some programs for that, or is there anything you're aware of that can help the local art galleries?

4:20 p.m.

Deputy Minister, Department of Canadian Heritage

Daniel Jean

Budget 2012 is basically proposing to double the contingent liability insurance for travelling exhibits, and it's in Bill C-38. This would allow the possibility to cover in a self-insurance way, like contingent liability, a lot more big and smaller exhibits throughout various museums, yes.

4:20 p.m.

Conservative

Ron Cannan Conservative Kelowna—Lake Country, BC

That's great news. I think another reason why it's important is creating jobs. Arts and culture is a big economic generator for communities across Canada.

We talk about sports and recreation and arts and culture as a big component. Kelowna and the smaller community of Lake Country were selected as one of the cultural capitals of Canada. It's very important for the museum and the history.

We're very fortunate. On the weekend we unveiled a life-sized statue, six feet, eight inches, of Father Pandosy, the first Oblate missionary, who 152 years ago settled in the Okanagan. Thanks to a $49,000 grant from Heritage Canada, the community was spurred to raise over $100,000 for it for the historical society.

Is there that ongoing emphasis to help collaborate, as the chair, Mr. Martin, alluded to, as far as balance from the community, from partnership? Is there any type of formula you looked at in terms of working on grants and applications to see if there's a community appetite to help come to the table, such that if they were to raise 50%, 60%, or 70%, there would be encouraging Heritage Canada opportunities in the background?