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

House of Commons Hansard #18 of the 35th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was provinces.

Topics

AgricultureOral Question Period

February 9th, 1994 / 2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Bob Speller Liberal Haldimand—Norfolk, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Agriculture. I want to assure my colleagues in the Reform Party that it deals with an issue of importance not only to my riding but to many farmers across the country.

In the red book we promised a system of whole farm support that would help Canadian farmers who are in distress. I wonder if the minister could guarantee that the programs we set forward in whole farm support will have the broadest range of public input and public say on this issue. I wonder if he could also bring the House up to date on the status of that program.

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Regina—Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the question. Under the previous government and in conjunction with provincial governments a process is under way to review and revamp Canadian farm income safety net programs. That process resulted in a conference last week in Winnipeg involving the federal government, the provinces, farm organizations and others aimed toward developing a consensus on farm safety net programs.

There was a great deal of support at the meeting for the concept of the whole farm program that we had described in our red book, a program that would be GATT consistent and market neutral and financially sound, affordable and effective. Unfortunately we had less agreement concerning the exact details of such a program or programs.

On the hon. member's point about the broadest possible consultation, he and others can be completely assured of that as we work toward the final development of this concept. I would also want to include in that consultation all members of the House of Commons who would be interested in this very important subject for agriculture.

Reproductive TechnologiesOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Pierrette Venne Bloc Saint-Hubert, QC

Mr. Speaker, in its report the Baird Commission recommended prohibiting research on altering human embryos. The public wants research, as well as the application of new reproductive technologies, to be subject to very strict controls.

Will the Minister of Justice and his government propose amendments to our criminal laws in order to prohibit research on altering human embryos?

Reproductive TechnologiesOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Etobicoke Centre Ontario

Liberal

Allan Rock LiberalMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, as the hon. member knows, the royal commission made some 300 recommendations in a very extensive report after an extended period of study. We have all those recommendations under consideration, primarily in the Ministry of Health.

But it is true to say that some of the recommendations had to deal with amendments to the Criminal Code to create new offences to reflect societal values. I can tell the hon. member that we are studying those in particular. We will take great care in assessing the recommendations to distinguish between reasonable, permissible and desirable research on the one hand and not permissible conduct on the other hand.

That is the challenge. Those studies are under way and we will report to the House in due course.

Reproductive TechnologiesOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Pierrette Venne Bloc Saint-Hubert, QC

Mr. Speaker, there are many recommendations in the report, some 300 in fact, but all 300 do not concern the Minister of Justice.

Does the minister agree that it is urgent to table during this session a comprehensive piece of legislation on new reproductive technologies, taking into account of course the scope of the federal jurisdiction?

Reproductive TechnologiesOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Etobicoke Centre Ontario

Liberal

Allan Rock LiberalMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I can assure the hon. member that we are studying the recommendations with a haste that reflects their urgency.

Equalization PaymentsOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Reform

Ted White Reform North Vancouver, BC

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

Under the agreement recently negotiated with the provinces by the Minister of Finance, Quebec will receive $3.7 billion in equalization payments-that is 47 per cent of the total-while B.C., Alberta and Ontario receive nothing.

The formula used to calculate the size of the equalization payments is said to take into account the ability of individual provinces to tax their residents.

Since the Prime Minister wants all taxation to be fair and to close all loopholes, how can he approve of such a large payment to Quebec when the tax rate for corporations in Quebec is only 6.9 per cent, while it is between 15 per cent and 17 per cent for corporations in the rest of Canada.

Equalization PaymentsOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the formula is a very complex one and every component is incorporated. If we extract one we can come to all sorts of conclusions.

This system has been established for a long time and it is now guaranteed in the Constitution.

Equalization PaymentsOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Reform

Ted White Reform North Vancouver, BC

Mr. Speaker, I have a supplementary question for the Prime Minister.

It would appear that because corporations in Quebec are paying income tax at a rate approximately one-half the rate being paid by corporations in the rest of Canada, that the people of B.C., Alberta and Ontario are subsidizing businesses in Quebec.

Could the Prime Minister confirm that equalization payments to Quebec would be much lower if corporations in Quebec paid their fair share of corporation income taxes?

Equalization PaymentsOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Scarborough East Ontario

Liberal

Doug Peters LiberalSecretary of State (International Financial Institutions)

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to answer the hon. member's question.

The details of the equalization payments are based on the ability of taxation standards among the provinces. They do not relate to tax rates. They relate to the ability to pay taxes including property taxes, corporate taxes and all sorts of other taxes. It is a very complicated formula. I will be happy to supply the member with it if he would like to look at it. It is a very fair basis, as the Prime Minister said, based on the Constitution.

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Maurice Bernier Bloc Mégantic—Compton—Stanstead, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Department of Agriculture and Agri-Food decided to slaughter a Highland bull imported from the United Kingdom because, according to the department, this animal might suffer from the so-called mad cow disease. However the maximum incubation period for that disease is eight years, and this bull, which was considered to be of unique genetic value in the world, had been in Canada for 12 years.

My question is for the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food. Since the incubation period does not justify killing the animal, whose commercial value is upwards of $40,000, why was the department so intent upon getting rid of it?

AgricultureOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Regina—Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, the problem in Canada with BSE disease in cattle in the last number of months is a very serious one. It is very troubling to livestock owners. They obviously recognize the problem of not dealing with the disease but also recognize the very traumatic consequences that flow from the kind of control measures which are necessary to deal with the disease.

It is not a happy situation but it is one officials in my department have been approaching very seriously and conscientiously. Our control measures have had the complete support of virtually every major livestock organization in the country as well as the veterinary medical associations, provincial departments of agriculture, international trade officials and our world trading partners.

It is not a happy circumstance but we have tried to deal with it in a very conscientious and, to the extent possible, compassionate way.

Interparliamentary DelegationsRoutine Proceedings

3 p.m.

Liberal

Charles Caccia Liberal Davenport, ON

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 34, I am honoured to present, in both official languages, the report of the Nordic Council's Parliamentary Conference on the Arctic held in Reykjavik, Iceland, on August 16 and August 17 last year.

In this report the delegation to the council recommended and found acceptance to a number of recommendations which I will not read in their entirety. I will select from them the most important, namely the importance of co-operation among Arctic states and other parties engaged in the Rovaniemi process and the elaboration of an Arctic environmental protection strategy in accordance with agenda 21 of the United Nations Conference on the Environment and Development.

Interparliamentary DelegationsRoutine Proceedings

3 p.m.

Liberal

Shirley Maheu Liberal Saint-Laurent—Cartierville, QC

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 34, I have the honour to present to the House, in both official languages, the report of the parliamentary delegation to Sao Paulo, Brazil, from July 16 to July 19, 1993.

Interparliamentary DelegationsRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

Ron MacDonald Liberal Dartmouth, NS

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 34, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the report of the Canadian delegation of the Canada-Japan Interparliamentary Association to the second annual meeting of the Asia-Pacific parliamentary forum held in the Philippines on January 14 and January 15.

The recommendations that came out of this meeting are of great interest to Canada. The fact that the Canadian Parliament decided to participate even before this Parliament was formerly struck certainly indicates the importance that this government and this Parliament place on economic matters in the Asia-Pacific region.

Canadian Security Intelligence Service ActRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

Tom Wappel Liberal Scarborough West, ON

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-213, an act to amend the Canadian Security Intelligence Service Act.

Mr. Speaker, this is a very specific bill to amend a particular section, section 52, of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service Act. It would provide that the recommendations of the Security Intelligence Review Committee are to be implemented unless overruled by the minister concerned.

In that event the minister would be required to report to Parliament the reasons for overruling the decision of the committee and if the reasons were secret the minister would be required to report to Parliament why they are deemed to be secret.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed.)

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Reform

Stephen Harper Reform Calgary West, AB

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to present petitions with a total of 1,286 signatures mainly from the city of Calgary.

The petitioners request the government to bring in legislation to toughen the Young Offenders Act along the lines of the principles of the former juvenile delinquents act. The petitions are signed in memory of Ryan Garrioch, a young boy in my riding who was murdered in a school yard.

I would urge the government to consider carefully these kinds of recommendations.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Reform

Jack Frazer Reform Saanich—Gulf Islands, BC

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36, it is my duty and honour to rise in the House to present a petition duly certified by the clerk of petitions on behalf of the constituents of Saanich-Gulf Islands and the surrounding area.

The petitioners humbly pray and call upon Parliament to enact legislation providing for a referendum of the people, binding upon Parliament, to accept or reject two official languages, English and French, for the government and people of Canada.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

Judy Bethel Liberal Edmonton East, AB

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36, I am presenting a petition from the residents of Edmonton asking the government to ban the sale of the serial killer board game and similar games in Canada.

This petition, gathered by the members of St. Matthew's Parish, has the marks of children on the back. It is for the sake of these children and all the children of Canada that I support this request.

Promoting violence which these games do is not in the best interest of children. Protecting a safe environment for our children is as important as freedom of speech and it justifies the action proposed in this petition as reasonable in a free and democratic society.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Reform

Jim Hart Reform Okanagan—Similkameen—Merritt, BC

Mr. Speaker, I rise under Standing Order 36 of the House to present a petition on behalf of some concerned constituents of my riding of Okanagan-Similkameen-Merritt.

This petition requests that a referendum be held to accept or reject the official languages of Canada.

This petition is duly certified by the clerk of petitions. The petitioners feel that the current official languages policy of Canada is divisive and also very expensive under the current financial restraints.

It gives me great pleasure to present the petition this afternoon.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Reform

Philip Mayfield Reform Cariboo—Chilcotin, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to rise in the House to present a petition from the residents of Horsefly, British Columbia.

My constituents are firmly opposed to any reduction in postal service and postal personnel in rural communities as well as to the closure of rural post offices.

My constituents call upon Parliament to ensure that rural communities which have already been badly affected by the reductions will recover the complete postal services to which they are accustomed.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Gary Pillitteri Liberal Niagara Falls, ON

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36, it is a pleasure for me to present a petition signed by the residents of my riding of Niagara Falls.

The petitioners are asking for amendments to be made to our laws prohibiting the importation, the distribution and sale of killer cards. They would like to advise the manufacturer of these killer cards that their products, if destined for Canada, will be seized and destroyed.

Questions On The Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Kingston and the Islands Ontario

Liberal

Peter Milliken LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I would ask that all questions be allowed to stand.

Questions On The Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

The Speaker

Shall all questions be allowed to stand?

Questions On The Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.