House of Commons Hansard #68 of the 37th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was tax.

Topics

2 p.m.

The Speaker

As is our practice on Wednesday we will now sing O Canada, and we will be led by the hon. member for Saskatoon—Rosetown—Biggar.

ArmeniaStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Sarkis Assadourian Liberal Brampton Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, on Monday evening members of parliament and diplomats joined with the Armenian ambassador and members of the Armenian community to celebrate the 83rd anniversary of the independence of the Armenian first republic.

Today, Armenia is a proud and independent country controlling its own destiny on the world stage. Following the genocide of the Armenians during the turmoil of the first world war and its aftermath, independence was gained from the Ottoman Empire on May 28, 1918.

Tragically, freedom was short lived. December 2, 1920 was the beginning of 70 years of tyranny at the hands of the communists. The 1918 independence, though brief, was the foundation of the modern Armenian state. Armenia regained its independence on September 21, 1991, following the collapse of the U.S.S.R.

Today, the survivors who immigrated to Canada and the contribution they and their children have made to our nation enrich our society in many diverse ways. Canadians of Armenian descent continue to use their talents to build a better Canada through the arts and sciences as well as in business and in every walk of life.

Youth Criminal Justice ActStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Chuck Cadman Canadian Alliance Surrey North, BC

Mr. Speaker, Bill C-7, the new youth criminal justice act has finally left this place. Unfortunately for Canadians it will, in the opinion of many, ultimately turn out to be worse than the much reviled Young Offenders Act that it is intended to replace.

The provinces who must administer the youth law have said that the federal government failed to properly consult and that no proper cost analysis was ever conducted.

The new act is riddled with discretions and loopholes. Its sheer complexity will lead to delays and soaring legal aid bills to the taxpayer. Violent and repeat offenders will be eligible for extra judicial measures. That is another term for avoiding court in favour of community programs.

Maximum custodial youth sentences for serious violent offences will actually be reduced. Murder, manslaughter, attempted murder and aggravated sexual assault will be presumed serious enough for adult sentences, maybe. Sexual assault with a weapon, armed robbery and kidnapping will not.

The government has taken over seven years to produce legislation that is doomed to failure. Unfortunately it is mainly our youth who will pay the price, and that is sad.

Quebec Biotechnology Innovation CentreStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Carole-Marie Allard Liberal Laval East, QC

Mr. Speaker, this week I represented the Secretary of State responsible for Canada's economic development at the fifth anniversary of the Quebec Biotechnology Innovation Centre, which is located in Laval, Quebec.

I was just amazed at how worthwhile and successful the business incubator approach has been. Inaugurated in 1996, the Quebec Biotechnology Innovation Centre in Laval has already been instrumental in the development and business success of eleven companies.

I was able to make the announcement that this organization would be receiving $350,000 in financial assistance, and I can tell hon. members that this funding from the Government of Canada was greatly appreciated by chairman of the board, Jacques Gagné, CEO Normand de Montigny and all the team.

Congratulations to the people of Laval and long live their Quebec Biotechnology Innovation Centre.

Crasdale FarmsStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Wayne Easter Liberal Malpeque, PE

Mr. Speaker, I am most pleased to congratulate Athol and Brian Craswell of Crasdale Farms of South Rustico, Prince Edward Island upon receiving the master breeder award presented annually by Holstein breeders across Canada.

This honour to Crasdale Farms marks the fifth time ever that a Prince Edward Island farm has been a recipient of this prestigious award. Crasdale Farms is the only recipient this year for all of Atlantic Canada.

The award symbolizes one of the key components of the strengths of the Canadian dairy industry, that is exceptional breeding practices. The award itself is based upon the accumulation of points earned by animals bred by a farmstead that remain in Canada.

I congratulate the Craswell family for a job well done and for receiving this recognition. They indeed should be proud.

Owens-CorningStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Brenda Chamberlain Liberal Guelph—Wellington, ON

Mr. Speaker, I am proud to rise in the House today to congratulate and honour the management and staff of the Owens-Corning Guelph glass plant on the occasion of the plant's 50th anniversary.

Friday, May 25 kicked off the two day celebration with employees and members of the community coming together for an open house and barbeque. Tours of the operation and product displays were another highlight offered to all who came.

I am very pleased that Owens-Corning chose to reside in my riding. Owens-Corning is a valued member of my community and it is also recognized internationally as a good corporate citizen and a global leader. Not only does Owens-Corning maintain high environmental standards and encourage environmental performance goals within the company but it also gives back to our community in which it resides through its support of organizations such as Habitat for Humanity, the United Way and the Easter Seals Society.

I offer my congratulations to Owens-Corning and I wish them every success in Guelph for the next 50 years and more.

The EnvironmentStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

John Duncan Canadian Alliance Vancouver Island North, BC

Mr. Speaker, we all know about the ongoing malignant environmental catastrophe at the Sydney tar ponds in Cape Breton.

Millions have been spent since the 1980s to determine the negative effects of the tar ponds and on the ineffective cleanup. A week ago the government announced yet another plan. It will be testing, analyzing, carrying out risk assessments, holding meetings and creating more plans. This removes no one from harm's way.

The government has no common sense priority for spending. A month ago $560 million was given to the ministry of propaganda, oh, I mean the department of heritage, to spend on things like a virtual Internet museum when our museums already have Internet sites.

Some $10 million was spent in my riding to relocate the families of the Ahaminaquus Indian Reserve away from pulp mill discharges. Does the government think that the people of Cape Breton are less worthy?

Federation Of Canadian MunicipalitiesStatements By Members

May 30th, 2001 / 2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Bryon Wilfert Liberal Oak Ridges, ON

Mr. Speaker, I would like to take the opportunity to congratulate my municipal colleagues from coast to coast to coast on a very successful conference in Banff last weekend.

It was the 64th annual conference of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities which has been the national voice of municipal government since 1901. The FCM is dedicated to improving the quality of life in communities and promoting strong, effective and accountable municipal government.

Representing Canada's largest cities through to the smallest rural and remote communities, our elected municipal leaders work tirelessly on behalf of their constituents to ensure their quality of life.

The government has an impressive relationship in listening and working with municipal governments across the country: the adoption of a national infrastructure program; the establishment of $125 million green enabling fund; the 20% club; the reduction of CO2 emissions over 10 years; the payments in lieu of taxes legislation; urban crime; community safety programs, and I could go on.

I would like to thank Joanne Monaghan for her tireless work as president—

Federation Of Canadian MunicipalitiesStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Quebec.

Young OffendersStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Christiane Gagnon Bloc Québec, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Quebecois tour of the various regions of Quebec in connection with Bill C-7 has garnered more support for a definite no to the Minister of Justice as far as the content of her young offender legislation is concerned.

I would remind hon. members of the repressive approach of this bill, which runs counter to Quebec's current rehabilitation based approach to young offenders.

I would like to express particular thanks to a young actor who volunteered his time to the tour and made a tangible contribution to raising public awareness of the impact of the federal legislation.

Marc Beaupré, who plays Kevin in the popular series Deux Frères , spent some time with prisoners in order to get into his role, and has called our prisons schools for crime. He made an impassioned argument for the importance of vehemently opposing Bill C-7. His message could be summarized as follows “Young offenders will turned into criminals instead of being helped”.

On behalf of the Bloc Quebecois, I thank Marc Beaupré for his commitment, and for his generosity in particular.

Liberal Party Of CanadaStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Raymond Lavigne Liberal Verdun—Saint-Henri—Saint-Paul—Pointe Saint-Charles, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am proud to mention the presence in Ottawa of the Liberal candidates of the province of Quebec in the last federal election.

Despite defeat, they are here today because each of them believes in our democracy and the importance of the role of MP.

These men and women are Canadians convinced of the need to work for our country's unity. They have put time and energy into making their experience and their knowledge available to their fellow citizens. Working with them during the campaign was rewarding, and we all came out winners.

In every election there are winners and defeated candidates. This message is for them. I thank them for coming to meet us. I ask them to continue their social involvement and follow their goals. Tenacity brings victory closer.

Youth Criminal Justice ActStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Paul Forseth Canadian Alliance New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, BC

Mr. Speaker, the government has just passed a replacement for the Young Offenders Act called the youth criminal justice act. If there was ever an example of why the government is not competent to govern, then this is it.

Although many political analysts admit that the Liberals are without principle, the bill is the technical evidence that the Liberals have no canopy of principles to find a moral compass of direction.

The passage of this type of bill says that millions of signatures on petitions mean nothing. It means that safer communities or support for the provinces, with their constitutional responsibilities for social welfare and children in need of care and protection, are to be overruled. The government has imposed a central system agenda over the people's agenda.

Through the bill the Liberals show that they are out of touch with average Canadians and are not competent to govern.

Mack Alumni AssociationStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Walt Lastewka Liberal St. Catharines, ON

Mr. Speaker, on Friday, June 1, the Mack Alumni Association celebrates its 100th anniversary.

The St. Catharines Training School and Nurses' Residence was founded in 1874 by Dr. Theophilus Mack and was the first school for nurses in Canada under the Nightingale system. The alumni association was founded 26 years later.

The school continued until 1969 when government regulations precipitated changes. The new Mack School of Nursing carried on at the college level until 1974 when the last class of nurses graduated. That year the school ceased to exist and the nursing school was incorporated with Niagara College.

During its 100 years of existence, 1,862 persons graduated from the Mack nursing program. The alumni association has done much to keep the Mack tradition alive and I am sure the association will remain viable as long as there are living graduates.

I congratulate the Mack Alumni Association on its 100th anniversary and I look forward to participating in its celebrations this weekend.

Public Service AllianceStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Wendy Lill NDP Dartmouth, NS

Mr. Speaker, I had the honour of taking part in an important work of performance art.

I walked on the picket line with members of local 70397 of the Public Service Alliance of Canada who have been on strike at the National Gallery of Canada and the Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography since May 10.

They have painted their picket duty worn shoes bright red and placed them on the line beside them as visual reminders of their uniqueness and as a symbol of their passion and solidarity.

These 200 men and women do all of the preparation work for the exhibits as well as serve the visiting public from across Canada and around the world. They enjoy the work they do and they take pride in the quality and professionalism of the service they provide.

All they are seeking is the same wage increase given to their colleagues at other national museums. It is time that their employer recognized that they are equal to their counterparts at the Canada Aviation Museum and the Canada Science and Technology Museum. It is time to give this hardworking, proud group of cultural workers the recognition they have earned and so deserve.

International TradeStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Bloc Kamouraska—Rivière-Du-Loup—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, the federal government denies through its actions having given verbal support for maintaining the supply management system.

When the Minister for International Trade issues import permits for additional breaded cheese sticks above the negotiated tariff quota, he is working against dairy producers, who asked him to stop issuing these permits.

Dairy producers do not think the federal government is honouring its commitment to defend and maintain supply management. They criticize the federal government's refusal to protect rights it enjoys under the WTO.

They also want the Minister for International Trade to stop discussions with the states on reciprocal cheese stick access, which were initiated without the consultation of dairy producers in Canada.

The Minister for International Trade represents a riding in Quebec which leads in Canada's dairy production, a fine example of the erratic defence of Quebec's interests by a federal minister from Quebec.

National Big Sisters DayStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Gurbax Malhi Liberal Bramalea—Gore—Malton—Springdale, ON

Mr. Speaker, this Saturday is National Big Sisters Day. Big Sisters of Canada has programs in more than 300 Canadian communities.

Women volunteer their time to become mentors to youngsters who can greatly benefit from having an adult role model to look up to. This program is a great success. Children who have been in the program go on to graduate from high school at a rate of 20% higher than the national average.

I commend the work of Big Sisters of Canada and I encourage the constituents of Bramalea—Gore—Malton—Springdale to volunteer and support the riding's local branch, Big Sisters of Peel.

Disability Awareness WeekStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Greg Thompson Progressive Conservative New Brunswick Southwest, NB

Mr. Speaker, in New Brunswick this week citizens will open their minds and communities by celebrating Disability Awareness Week, May 27 to June 2. The focus of this week's events is: Be active, be safe, be healthy.

In New Brunswick over 127,000 citizens have some kind of disability. They range from persons in wheelchairs to persons with less obvious disabilities such as hearing loss, epilepsy, learning or developmental disabilities.

Each day thousands of New Brunswickers struggle to cope with their disabilities while trying to get an education, get a job, perhaps have a family and live productive lives in their communities.

I congratulate all New Brunswickers for participating in this campaign of awareness.

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Canadian Alliance

Stockwell Day Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, despite the government's assurances to the contrary, we now know that the process to acquire new helicopters has actually been riddled with political interference.

The vice-chief of defence staff has instructed military planners to ensure that the new helicopters would not even have the combat capability of the aging 40 year old Sea Kings. Even the Federal Court of Canada says that there has been “patent politicization” of this process.

Why has the government interfered in this important process?

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, we need to replace the helicopters. There will be a bid. Every company that can provide the equipment we need will be invited to submit a bid. We want to have the best helicopters at the best price possible to do the job that needs to be done.

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Canadian Alliance

Stockwell Day Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, a fleet of helicopters is essential to our defence as well as to rescue operations.

Yesterday, the government promised us that there was no political interference in the contract awarding process.

Will the Prime Minister admit in the House what everyone already suspects, which is that he cancelled, at considerable expense, the EH-101 helicopter contract negotiated by the Progressive Conservatives eight years ago, and now he is preventing this same company from getting the contract?

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, of course, in 1993, the government was looking at a deficit of $42 billion. The government could not afford helicopters back then.

Later we put out tenders for helicopters to patrol Canada's shores. Bids were submitted and one company won the contract.

Now we need helicopters for another purpose. This purpose was carefully described for all those wishing to tender a bid. What we want is a helicopter that can do the job very well, but at the lowest cost possible, because this is not our money, but taxpayers' money.

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Canadian Alliance

Stockwell Day Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, they will not be able to do the same work, and that is very clear.

The safety of Canada's military personnel is being jeopardized by the aging fleet and also by what it appears the government will be ordering.

We need to send a signal not only to our NATO partners but, more important, to our military personnel that we support our armed forces in this country.

Why is the Prime Minister allowing the possible purchase of helicopters that will not even be able to perform as well as the 40 year old fleet that is there now?

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, we need a helicopter to do some operations. These operations have been described and they have been made public. Now those who produce helicopters will bid on the contract.

Different companies build helicopters and different helicopters are used in different countries. The United States does not use the same type of helicopter as Great Britain. France does not use the same helicopter as another country.

What we want is a good helicopter at the lowest price possible.

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Peter Goldring Canadian Alliance Edmonton Centre-East, AB

Mr. Speaker, an internal Department of National Defence document contradicts the defence minister's statement of yesterday. The document states that the required endurance of a mission to aid a vessel in distress could well be greater than three hours. Need I state that a rescue mission 50 miles short is no rescue at all?

Why would we politically compromise safety, go against advice and put lives at risk for a helicopter with only a two hour and twenty minute endurance? Why?

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Haliburton—Victoria—Brock Ontario

Liberal

John O'Reilly LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, the world is changing so we must plan. Maybe this comes as a surprise to the opposition but we must plan for future force requirements, not 1960s' technology but 2005 technology. The new helicopters will meet Canada's national defence policy.