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House of Commons Hansard #121 of the 35th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was ports.

Topics

Laurier ClubOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Reform

Ian McClelland Reform Edmonton Southwest, AB

Mr. Speaker, my question is again for the Acting Prime Minister.

This week a private reception of members of the Laurier Club was held in Montreal organized by Senator Leo Kolber, a man closely connected with the Pearson Development Corporation, a group now locked in battle with the federal government over the closure of the Pearson airport.

Has the Deputy Prime Minister consulted with the ethics counsellor as to the propriety of such privileged access to ministers of the crown or would that consultation be done retroactively?

Laurier ClubOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Hamilton East Ontario

Liberal

Sheila Copps LiberalDeputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, the only party that is supporting the Pearson deal in this House is the Reform Party.

Gun SmugglingOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Bloc

Michel Bellehumeur Bloc Berthier—Montcalm, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Solicitor General.

For most crimes committed with firearms in Canada, the weapons were smuggled from the United States. The Solicitor General has told this House many times that the RCMP and other police forces were stepping up their efforts to stop gun smuggling.

Can the Solicitor General tell us what concrete action he has taken since this commitment was made and how the RCMP is intensifying its efforts against guns being smuggled from the United States? English ]

Gun SmugglingOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Windsor West Ontario

Liberal

Herb Gray LiberalLeader of the Government in the House of Commons and Solicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, the national anti-smuggling program announced last February was aimed not only at cigarettes but at other forms of smuggling, like the smuggling of weapons.

The added resources both of the mounted police and of the Department of National Revenue are working to deal with the smuggling of arms as well as the smuggling of other goods. This co-operation has intensified and the objectives of the plan, therefore, are being pursued as we said they would be.

Gun SmugglingOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Bloc

Michel Bellehumeur Bloc Berthier—Montcalm, QC

Mr. Speaker, the minister made some commitments last spring.

Can he give us clear examples of specific results obtained by the RCMP in the fight against gun smuggling?

Gun SmugglingOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Windsor West Ontario

Liberal

Herb Gray LiberalLeader of the Government in the House of Commons and Solicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I will see what additional information I can obtain for the hon. member.

I also point out that this area of the smuggling of arms is one that is being examined and worked on by the Minister of Justice, the Minister of National Revenue and myself to be dealt with as part of our package for stronger gun control.

I hope the hon. member's question indicates that he and other members of the House, but especially his party, will give us strong support when we bring forward those measures.

LighthousesOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Reform

Jim Gouk Reform Kootenay West—Revelstoke, BC

Mr. Speaker, in a news release sent out yesterday the government announced it will hold 60 public consultation meetings on light station destaffing. This consultation process was not to determine whether or not people accept destaffing. Previous consultation showed that west coast communities, boaters, fishermen and coastal pilots do not want this. This consultation is on implementation of the very policy the government previously agreed not to implement.

My question for the Minister of Transport is why is this government cutting back on operational jobs which affect public safety instead of cutting back on senior bureaucrat jobs that only affect the spending of the Canadian taxpayers' dollars?

LighthousesOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Acadie—Bathurst New Brunswick

Liberal

Douglas Young LiberalMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, it boggles the mind even on a Friday morning that Reform comes along and tells us not to try to save the Canada taxpayers money.

The fact of the matter is that in the United States there is one lighthouse that is still staffed and it is a historical site. The United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, countries around the world have destaffed their lighthouses.

I understand the importance historically of lighthouses in British Columbia and Newfoundland, on both coasts of this country.

If the Reform Party wants to be consistent it should understand that even the Vancouver Sun had a headline that said: ``It is time to switch off our lighthouse keepers''. It is time for the Reform Party to switch on the light to reality as it relates to some of these technological changes.

LighthousesOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Reform

Jim Gouk Reform Kootenay West—Revelstoke, BC

Mr. Speaker, if the government is going to follow the example of other countries, I hope the justice minister will take note that Australia cancelled its firearms registration because it did not work.

The minister's departmental publication "West Coast Lighthouses" states that despite technological changes over the past 200 years in the automation of equipment, the human element has proven essential in warning of unpredictable changes in weather, aiding in search and rescue activities and providing essential services to mariners.

Will the minister tell us why he is ignoring his own department and jeopardizing safety to save money by cutting operational people instead of bureaucrats?

LighthousesOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Acadie—Bathurst New Brunswick

Liberal

Douglas Young LiberalMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I will say in response to my hon. friend that we are not being very picky at Transport Canada about what we are cutting.

People who are looking at what we are attempting to do in this department recognize that we are trying to be even handed about it. We are trying to reflect new technologies. We are trying to make sure that we have a very safe environment for Canadians to travel in this country.

I want to make it very clear that I cannot continue to accept questions like this coming from a member who says he thinks there is nothing wrong with the Pearson deal and then expects me to take him seriously when he is talking about lighthouses.

Climate ChangeOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Liberal

Charles Caccia Liberal Davenport, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is on climate change and is for the Minister of the Environment.

Next week provincial and federal environment and energy ministers will meet to discuss the reduction in carbon dioxide emissions to deal with climate change.

Can the minister indicate to this House what kind of co-operation would be needed from the provinces and from the private sector in order to reach the desired target of minus 20 per cent in carbon dioxide emissions by the year 2005?

Climate ChangeOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Hamilton East Ontario

Liberal

Sheila Copps LiberalDeputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, as the member knows, at this point in time we are about 11 per cent short of our goal for stabilization.

To meet even the stabilization goals, the bare minimum goal established by the previous government at Rio, we would need to have an action plan tabled by the national government and by every provincial government in advance of the Berlin meeting.

We believe that science is telling us that we have to go further. We are convinced that at the meeting in Bathurst we will get the full support of energy and environment ministers across the country to go beyond voluntary action. We need voluntary action but we also need other legislative action to make sure that we meet our goals of stabilization and 20 per cent reduction.

Film IndustryOral Question Period

November 4th, 1994 / 11:50 a.m.

Bloc

Suzanne Tremblay Bloc Rimouski—Témiscouata, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Canadian Heritage.

The minister has not yet rejected the recommendations contained in the SECOR report on the future of cultural industries. Yet, all are unanimous in saying that if the minister implements the recommendation regarding Telefilm Canada, to the effect that the government should only invest in presumably profitable projects from a commercial point of view, the whole independent motion picture industry will be jeopardized.

Does the minister realize that the recommendations giving priority to major profitable corporations would have the effect of eliminating the whole cultural dimension of Telefilm Canada, and does he agree that this strictly commercial approach would adversely affect the arrival of new creators on the market?

Film IndustryOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Laval West Québec

Liberal

Michel Dupuy LiberalMinister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, the SECOR report was submitted by a consultant who has ideas and who made suggestions. That study was commissioned by the previous Conservative government. Obviously, there are other sources of advice and the Minister of Canadian Heritage will make a decision in due time.

Film IndustryOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Bloc

Suzanne Tremblay Bloc Rimouski—Témiscouata, QC

Mr. Speaker, the study was indeed commissioned by the Conservatives, but the contract was awarded to a prominent Liberal.

Does the minister not realize that he is losing all credibility within the cultural community and, in order to reassure once and for all the creative artists and those who will follow into their footsteps, will he categorically dissociate himself from the recommendations of the SECOR report? Yes or no?

Film IndustryOral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

Laval West Québec

Liberal

Michel Dupuy LiberalMinister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member wants me to make decisions right now in this House to answer her questions.

However, when I make decisions, it is precisely in consultation with the people she claims to be protecting. In fact, I am doing just that right now. I have responded. I said that policies would be implemented after those concerned had been consulted.

Income Tax ActOral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

Reform

Lee Morrison Reform Swift Current—Maple Creek—Assiniboia, SK

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Finance.

Farmers who lose their land due to debt settlement are being treated unfairly due to the taxation of capital gains. When land is taken back in debt settlement it is deemed to have been sold for the amount of the debt with interest. The deemed proceeds usually exceed the value of the land. This results in a taxable capital gain. The taxpayers lose land, livelihood, child tax credits or benefits and they have to pay provincial tax as a result of the fictitious calculation.

Will the minister confirm that the Income Tax Act will be amended to retroactively rectify this situation?

Income Tax ActOral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

LaSalle—Émard Québec

Liberal

Paul Martin LiberalMinister of Finance and Minister responsible for the Federal Office of Regional Development-Quebec

Mr. Speaker, there is good news and bad news here. The good news is that the member gave me advance notice of this question. The bad news is that he gave me advance notice about three months ago and I am not sure I can remember the answer.

The fact is that the department has taken the member's question under consideration and I believe that we are going to be in a position if not to satisfy all of the question, certainly to give a favourable response. We are working on it.

Income Tax ActOral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

Reform

Lee Morrison Reform Swift Current—Maple Creek—Assiniboia, SK

Mr. Speaker, the reason I did not press for an answer sooner after having given notice is that the minister is so rarely in the House.

Income Tax ActOral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

Income Tax ActOral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

Reform

Lee Morrison Reform Swift Current—Maple Creek—Assiniboia, SK

Anyway, I thank the minister for his positive response and I will await with some eagerness the outcome of this.

Income Tax ActOral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

LaSalle—Émard Québec

Liberal

Paul Martin LiberalMinister of Finance and Minister responsible for the Federal Office of Regional Development-Quebec

Mr. Speaker, let me put it this way: As soon as I got notice I was in the House every day, but after about two months-

Liberal GovernmentOral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

NDP

Chris Axworthy NDP Saskatoon—Clark's Crossing, SK

Mr. Speaker, during the last campaign the Liberals promised Canadians they would bring honesty and integrity to government. Yet earlier this week the Prime Minister slipped out of Ottawa to meet with 350 Canadians who paid $1,000 each to the Liberal Party to buy access to the Prime Minister.

My question is for the Deputy Prime Minister who will remember that when the previous government carried on these sorts of activities she and her colleagues aggressively criticized that Prime Minister. Will she indicate how these secret meetings with those who pay for access and influence square with words about honesty and integrity that this government has spent so much time expressing?

Liberal GovernmentOral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

Hamilton East Ontario

Liberal

Sheila Copps LiberalDeputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, I am disappointed in the hon. member. We did not raise this issue when his leader had a boat cruise. We understand there is a legitimate function for fundraising in all political parties. Take a look at the Reform Party. There is a recent annotation that it received $75,000 from Sabre Energy Limited, $25,000 from Canadian Pacific, $20,000 from Hollinger Inc., $15,000 from Company No. 135482. Obviously parties have to raise money.

In the instance of the Laurier Club, the Laurier Club membership is even open to the member from the New Democratic Party. It is a public document. Membership is available to anybody who wants to walk four blocks down to 200 Laurier Avenue.

I can tell you that in the Liberal Party, unlike the Bloc that does not want to tell people who gave it money before the election, we are prepared to open our books and let everybody in.

International TradeOral Question Period

Noon

Bloc

Stéphane Bergeron Bloc Verchères, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food.

The Canadian government bought a year of peace for wheat exports to the United States by signing a very bad agreement.

Among unresolved agricultural issues, the U.S. is still using NAFTA to challenge the tariffs filed by Canada under the GATT agreement on supply-managed agricultural products, namely milk products, poultry and eggs. Section 424 of the GATT bill before the U.S. Congress requires the President of the United States to personally deal with this dispute and report back within a few months.

Can the minister give us an update on the negotiations in this specific matter and tell us why, on the eve of a new trade dispute with the U.S., he is not using the conciliation mechanisms provided for under GATT and NAFTA?