Thank you very much.
Thank you for being here.
First of all, I would like to apologize for being late. It was as a result of events beyond my control; I apologize for that.
Thank you for your testimony. I read it. It was very interesting and it clarifies matters for us.
Before asking my questions, I would like to comment on the study on the celebrations to mark the 150th anniversary of Confederation, to which you referred earlier. You mentioned one very important point. You say the committee is master of its decisions and that, if we consider this a priority, we should study it.
However, the moment when we conduct that study also has to be considered. I believe the committee should consider that point. Many other, much more urgent issues could be studied now. I am thinking, for example, of the Quebec City Marine Rescue Centre. Since I come from that region, this is of particular concern to me. So my colleagues and I have sent the commissioner's office a lot of complaints which we should examine here. Thank you for bringing this point to our committee's attention.
Now I come to my questions. You mentioned research in your presentation. This is one aspect of government work that is of great interest to me. I believe it is very important for our communities. However, seeing the various measures contained in the budget, we may well wonder whether the government is actually interested in research. We can look at what is happening at Statistics Canada and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. There appears to be less and less research on official languages, whereas the communities consider this issue essential.
I had a chance to speak briefly with the people from the Quebec Community Groups Network, who told me about the importance of research for that community. You yourself say you want to retain your entire research capability. Do you have a long-term plan to do that despite the budget cuts you are facing?