Mr. Speaker, my application is also pursuant to Standing Order 52 and deals with agriculture.
Successive Conservative and Liberal governments have not been able to deal with the farm income crisis over their years in government. As a result I point out that for the last three years Canadian farm families have been struggling against foreign market interferences that have decimated our commodity prices.
The federal government has attempted to address falling farm incomes through such programs as AIDA, agriculture income disaster assistance. However these attempts have not addressed the needs of farm families. For example, only 42% of emergency funding promised in December 1998 has actually left the cabinet table in Ottawa and been delivered to farmers. That leaves an awful lot of money still sitting here.
The farm income crisis is being pushed to new levels of urgency because of escalating fuel costs. Energy costs make up a significant portion of farm input costs. For example, experts have estimated that a 10% increase in energy costs will cause a 6% decline in farm income.
Farm families already in the grips of an income crisis will not be able to withstand this further. As a result I think we need to have another discussion with regard to the farm issue facing the country at this time.