Mr. Speaker, I listened intently to the speech of the president of the treasury board. I would like to draw her attention to the grants and contributions issue.
I remember that, after the situation at HRDC was revealed, the Minister of Human Resources Development said the situation was serious. This was directly contradicting the Prime Minister, who had talked about a $101 problem. Her attitude, at least at the time, seemed to be more responsible than the Prime Minister's.
Today, she talked a lot about having instituted a review of the policy for the future. But she also talked about control.
The control function involves, among other government responsibilities, imposing sanctions when mistakes are made and, more than mistakes, when unacceptable behaviours occur.
It would be great if the government could manage to rectify the situation in the future, but until today, it has not done anything to stop the use of funds for partisan reasons, which has been revealed, verified and demonstrated here in the House through a number of questions, particularly in the Prime Minister's riding, where public funds have constantly been used in an inappropriate and unacceptable fashion.
I would like to know if the president of the treasury board thinks something could be done to correct the situation. I have read reports in the paper this week, which I found alarming. There are people in the present Liberal government who say “We should get rid of job creation programs, because we really mismanaged them”.
Does the president of the treasury board share that opinion? Does she agree with the members of the Liberal majority who say that there should be no more job creation programs to stimulate economic growth in areas of high unemployment? Or would she agree that better control mechanisms and penalties are necessary to make sure that the present situation does not repeat itself?
Does she agree with me that there should have been an independent public inquiry and that concrete measures should have been taken to condemn such use of public funds for partisan purposes?