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House of Commons Hansard #186 of the 36th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was cbc.

Topics

Minister Of IndustryStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Jim Jones Progressive Conservative Markham, ON

Mr. Speaker, the lights are on at Industry Canada but nobody is home. In the past three months the Minister of Industry sang the virtues of high taxes as a way to improve productivity, turned a blind eye to federal loans to convicted criminal Yvon Duhaime and got caught with his pants down when the WTO ruled that Technology Partnerships Canada was an illegal subsidy.

Now we have news that the big banks, in particular the National Bank of Canada, are often misusing the federal small business financing program, costing the taxpayer hundreds of millions of dollars in bad loans.

What is the minister's response? The status quo. This is unacceptable. While Bill C-53 was a welcome improvement, we need a law and regulations with more teeth, we need penalties on banks that knowingly break the rules and we need a claims process that includes an assessment on whether banks reasonably evaluated loans.

The banks should not get taxpayer dollars to cover bad loans for business projects that clearly were not feasible. It is time for the industry minister to—

Minister Of IndustryStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Anjou—Rivière-des-Prairies.

Semaine Internationale De La FrancophonieStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Yvon Charbonneau Liberal Anjou—Rivière-Des-Prairies, QC

Mr. Speaker, during the Semaine internationale de la francophonie, which will be held from March 14 to 20, some 75 organizations and associations promoting and protecting the French language will be involved in many activities.

Performances, exhibitions, literary competitions, discussions, organized events and socio-cultural conferences will go to make up an exciting program promoting French, a jewel requiring our constant protection in this very particular North American context.

These activities will take place in various regions in Quebec, and the festivities will be organized under the auspices of the honourary president, Gilbert Lacasse, the publisher of La Presse .

We therefore wish every success to the organizers of the Semaine internationale de la francophonie and thank them for contributing to the increasing awareness of one of our riches, the French language.

The BudgetStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Marlene Jennings Liberal Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, according to the former premier of Quebec now a researcher for the Bloc Quebecois, the Government of Canada has declared war on Quebec. A fine idea. Especially, when we look at the misleading advertising of the PQ.

Here is the truth. Quebec will receive $954 per capita, over the next two years, therefore more than Ontario, which will receive $918. Then, they will both receive the same, $960.

With equalization payments, Quebec will receive $1,495 per capita in 1999-00, compared with $918 for Ontario. The Government of Quebec will receive an extraordinary equalization payment of $1.4 billion over the coming weeks.

Researcher Jacques Parizeau better go back to the drawing board.

The BudgetStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Rimouski—Mitis.

AgricultureStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Suzanne Tremblay Bloc Rimouski—Mitis, QC

Mr. Speaker, on the initiative of the Bloc Quebecois member for Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup—Témiscouata—Les Basques, the farmers of the lower St. Lawrence region have made their expectations known loud and clear as far as the next round of World Trade Organization negotiations are concerned.

They want to see Canada quit doing more than its competitors for the liberalization of markets, and do more to help them by investing heavily in R&D.

They are concerned about the attitude the federal government will adopt at the next round of negotiations of international agreements which are going to tend toward still greater liberalization of markets and they demand full respect for the consensual position of Quebec.

To quote Alain Bélanger, president of the symposium on agriculture and globalization, “I would have preferred to see Quebec at the table as a sovereign state. In the current context, rest assured that the Bloc Quebecois is going to act as a watchdog over the federal government in order to ensure that the interests of the farmers of Quebec are defended”.

Land MinesStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Reform

Jim Hart Reform Okanagan—Coquihalla, BC

Mr. Speaker, I rise on behalf of the people of Okanagan—Coquihalla to congratulate Canadians for brokering a treaty banning anti-personnel land mines.

This law takes effect today. But there is still a lot of work ahead. Canada must take a continued leadership role and invite more nations to become signatories to the anti-personnel land mine agreement. Canada must encourage signatories to abide by the treaty provisions and assist in the removal of anti-personnel land mines from war torn countries like Cambodia and Angola.

I congratulate the official opposition member from Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca who first raised the issue in the House. The good doctor spent many years treating land mine victims around the world. He has been a champion for banning anti-personnel land mines in order to save lives and limbs.

Canadians and this House have been well served by the tireless efforts of our official opposition colleague from Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca.

President Of The Queen's Privy Council For CanadaStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Pauline Picard Bloc Drummond, QC

Mr. Speaker, most decidedly, the president of the privy council seems to not have been privy to any counsel.

He certainly needs some, for if he continues to blunder about from sea to sea, all of Canada will end up joining forces with the Quebec sovereignists in condemning federalism as it is being served up by this academic who has taken up a new career.

For example, last week in Edmundston, he was preaching the apocalypse to the Acadian minority, warning them of the dangers of Quebec sovereignty. What a fine example of paternalism, arrogance and ignorance.

This same minister, who has already said that Quebeckers needed to be made to suffer in order to learn an appreciation of Canada, is now preaching to the Acadians. He reminds them of their minority situation, agrees that they are suffering, but tells them that they could suffer even more. An editorial in the February 24 edition of l'Acadie nouvelle quite rightly spoke out resoundingly against him.

This is what has become of federalism—

President Of The Queen's Privy Council For CanadaStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Dartmouth.

Persons With DisabilitiesStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Wendy Lill NDP Dartmouth, NS

Mr. Speaker, last week nine national organizations sent a letter to the Prime Minister demanding an action plan with defined outcomes, with dollar amounts attached, to deal with the crushing problems facing the disabled, a responsibility centred within government to ensure new policy initiatives such as child tax credits for families with children with disabilities, an extension of the opportunity funds, mobility rights assured by national standards and a commitment to the ongoing removal of barriers that prohibit our participation in community life, and an action plan to address issues of aboriginal people with disabilities.

To the Prime Minister, the time is now. Disabled Canadians cannot wait any longer. The disabled are tired of being excluded in this country. It is time to exercise their will to act.

Land MinesStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Ted McWhinney Liberal Vancouver Quadra, BC

Mr. Speaker, the land mines treaty enters into legal force today, a scant 15 months after it was opened for signature in Ottawa on December 1, 1997. It has already been signed by 134 states.

While attention focuses on the few holdout states, which include key permanent members of the security council, it may be argued that because of the wide representation, among its signatories, of all main political, ideological, cultural and regional groupings of the world community, the treaty has already entered into general customary international law and has become legally binding as such on signatory and non-signatory states alike. Dicta in recent jurisprudence of the World Court confirms such a legal thesis.

TaxationOral Question Period

March 1st, 1999 / 2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Reform

Preston Manning ReformLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, who pays some of the highest taxes in Canada? According to a new study by the C.D. Howe Institute, it is not millionaires or the super rich. It is ordinary Canadian families making between $30,000 and $60,000 a year.

Young families are grossly and unfairly overtaxed. Nothing in last month's budget did anything to change that. Why does the government's tax policy penalize and discriminate against young families?

TaxationOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Windsor West Ontario

Liberal

Herb Gray LiberalDeputy Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I know the Leader of the Opposition was quite busy with his united alternative conference last week, but if he had paid more attention to the budget when it was presented, he would realize that the general tax reforms, both in the last budget and in this budget, are focused particularly on middle and lower income families, among them millions of young families. Those are the people we are helping through this budget. Those are the people we will continue to help in years to come.

TaxationOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Reform

Preston Manning ReformLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, let us look at the tax position of two families after this budget.

Suppose there are two families, both earning $50,000 each and each with two children. We would think that they would both pay the same amount of tax. But if one family chooses to have one parent stay at home, that family under this government's tax policy ends up paying about $4,000 more per year in taxes.

Why does the government think that it is fair that one family should pay $4,000 more a year in taxes simply because one parent chose to stay home?

TaxationOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Willowdale Ontario

Liberal

Jim Peterson LiberalSecretary of State (International Financial Institutions)

Mr. Speaker, for a family earning $50,000, two earners and two children, the combination of our last two budgets has reduced the total tax bite by fully 15%. On top of that we have introduced the child tax benefit, $850 million in one budget followed by another $300 million on the last budget for a total of $2 billion to low income working families.

TaxationOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Reform

Preston Manning ReformLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the parliamentary secretary did not answer the question. Besides, the child tax credit gets clawed back after families make $26,000 a year.

The question is simply this: We have two families, identical income, two children, but one has a parent stay home and the other does not. The family with a parent who stays home to look after the children ends up paying $4,000 a year more in taxes than the other family.

Is it the policy of the government to discriminate against families that make that choice? Can the secretary answer the question?

TaxationOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Willowdale Ontario

Liberal

Jim Peterson LiberalSecretary of State (International Financial Institutions)

Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to be able to respond to the acting leader for the opposition.

We have recognized these disparities which occur. This is why we have taken 600,000 low income taxpayers right off the tax rolls in our last two budgets.

What the Leader of the Opposition fails to recognize in his question is that there are various tax credits which can be transferred among spouses when one—

TaxationOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

The Speaker

My colleagues, we all make little errors. Hon. members know they are the secretary of state and the Leader of the Opposition. The hon. member for Medicine Hat.

TaxationOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Reform

Monte Solberg Reform Medicine Hat, AB

Mr. Speaker, you will notice how the parliamentary secretary or whatever he is over there did—

TaxationOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

TaxationOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Medicine Hat.

TaxationOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Reform

Monte Solberg Reform Medicine Hat, AB

Mr. Speaker, let us see if we can get the minister to answer the question this time.

There are two families, each making $50,000. One has a parent stay home and that family ends up paying $4,000 more a year in taxes.

I want to know from the minister why his government discriminates against parents who choose to stay at home and look after their children. Why is that the government's policy?

TaxationOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Willowdale Ontario

Liberal

Jim Peterson LiberalSecretary of State (International Financial Institutions)

Mr. Speaker, as I was attempting to answer in the last question on the very same issue, one has to recognize that under our tax act we have brought in a lot of liberalizing measures which allow credits to be transferred from a spouse who is working and earning income to one who is not. I will go through some of these. For example, we have the age credit, the pension credit, the medical expense tax credit, the disability tax credit, the charitable donations tax credit. The tuition and educational tax credit can also—

TaxationOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Medicine Hat.

TaxationOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Reform

Monte Solberg Reform Medicine Hat, AB

And, Mr. Speaker, the most liberalizing act of all are the highest personal income taxes in the G-7, thanks to this government.

Let us see once again if the minister can answer the question. There are two families each making $50,000. One of them chooses to have a parent stay home and that family pays $4,000 more a year in taxes.

Why does this government discriminate against single income families?