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House of Commons Hansard #6 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was farmers.

Topics

Colin David GibsonStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Stan Keyes Liberal Hamilton West, ON

Mr. Speaker, Canadians were saddened to learn of the passing on July 3, 2002, of a true Canadian renaissance man who, much like his father before him, held a deep sense of civic duty and an uncompromising work ethic.

Colin David Gibson was a decorated veteran of World War II who served in Normandy with honour and distinction as an officer of the Royal Hamilton Light Infantry. His dedication to his profession as a respected lawyer later led him to serve as the member of Parliament for Hamilton--Wentworth from 1968 to 1972.

Colin Gibson's devotion to his community and country was rivalled only by his deep love for his family and his unwavering support for his hometown Hamilton Tiger Cats.

I ask the House to join me in extending our deepest sympathies to his family, friends and indeed all Canadians who remember him with affection.

Nobel Peace PrizeStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Ken Epp Canadian Alliance Elk Island, AB

Mr. Speaker, Craig Kielburger, at the young age of 12, became a defender of the rights of children around the world, especially those who are forced to work in factories in third world countries and are totally deprived of educational opportunities.

The Free the Children organization that Craig founded has grown to now include over 100,000 members. They have built over 300 schools, providing an opportunity for education to almost 20,000 children who otherwise would grow into adulthood with no education at all.

Craig has received a number of international awards and has forcefully given his message on programs like 60 Minutes and Oprah .

Now, at age 19, Craig has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. The fact that he has come this far shows that anyone, even very young people, can be effective in drawing the attention of the world to issues that are important to them. I wish to extend congratulations to Craig and tell him that we are pulling for him.

Hay West CampaignStatements By Members

October 7th, 2002 / 2 p.m.

Liberal

Peter Adams Liberal Peterborough, ON

Mr. Speaker, I wish to commend those in my riding of Peterborough and elsewhere who donated hay for western farmers in need. Not only did they donate the hay, they trucked it to rail depots such as Havelock and, with donated equipment, worked long hours packing it onto trains. In Peterborough they went a step further by raising funds to further subsidize these efforts.

This is a fine example of rural people, notably farmers in eastern Canada, reaching out to help farmers in dire straits in western Canada. It is gestures and efforts like this that make Canada such a great country.

I wish to thank all those involved with the Hay West project, including rail companies and the federal government for cars, fumigation and other assistance.

Timor LesteStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Francine Lalonde Bloc Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to acknowledge the Democratic Republic of Timor Leste, formerly known as East Timor.

It became the 191th member of the United Nations Organization. In March 1975, Indonesia invaded Timor and began a brutal occupation that would last for close to 25 years and result in the death of over one quarter of a million Timorese.

In August 1999, Timorese displayed exceptional courage when 78% of the population voted in favour of independence, in a referendum held by the UN and in spite of acts of violence.

This poor country, whose infrastructure was devastated by war, needs help. Let us stand by it in the extraordinary reconstruction effort that is about to begin. Compliance with international law is what resulted in this outcome.

In these times of tense international relations, the fact that Timor has joined the UN is a reminder that the rights of individuals and people are fragile, but are fundamental and must be protected. The fight against terrorism must not make us forget that.

I pay tribute the people of Timor Leste!

Don CherryStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Marcel Proulx Liberal Hull—Aylmer, QC

Mr. Speaker, last week, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation announced that Ron MacLean and the CBC had reached an agreement for the next season of Hockey Night in Canada .

In the course of these negotiations, we learned that sports commentator Don Cherry was being paid $700,000 by the CBC. I was stunned when I heard that, not just because this is a very high salary, but primarily because of the controversial nature of the comments made by this commentator, who does not hesitate to criticize the presence of foreign players and who indulges in discriminatory comments against francophones.

Don Cherry was found guilty, by the Quebec press council, of making insulting comments about Jean-Luc Brassard, a freestyle skier and the flag bearer of the Canadian team at the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympic Games. Then, in March 2001, Don Cherry spewed his venom on the Francophonie Games that were going to be held in the Ottawa-Hull region, in the summer of 2001.

I welcome the renewal of Ron MacLean's contract and I hope that Mr. MacLean will help keep his partner Don Cherry more in line in his comments, because his behaviour has definitely not been deserving of the forum made available to him by the CBC.

Member for Ottawa SouthStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Jason Kenney Canadian Alliance Calgary Southeast, AB

Mr. Speaker, I rise to join millions of Canadians in expressing profound dismay at the rude and thoughtless remarks of the Deputy Prime Minister this weekend.

On the very day that our Queen arrived here to join Canadians in celebrating the Golden Jubilee of her reign, this minister, a member of the Queen's Privy Council, a man who had to take the oath of allegiance in order to assume his office, had the crass bad taste to dismiss the Canadian Crown which the Queen herself personifies.

It is understandable that in a pluralistic democracy there will be differences of opinion on matters such as the monarchy. But the Deputy Prime Minister is not a private citizen. He is a senior representative of Her Majesty's government, and he therefore has a high responsibility to lead Canadians in honouring our sovereign as we thank her for her 50 years of graceful and selfless service to Canadians and members of the Commonwealth throughout the world.

Given the Deputy Prime Minister's public insult, it would be totally inappropriate for him to act as the Queen's escort when she visits us here in Ottawa. Let us hope that he does the right thing and instead joins Canadians in celebrating the Queen's 50 years of proud service.

The Royal VisitStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Raymond Simard Liberal Saint Boniface, MB

Mr. Speaker, Her Majesty the Queen and his Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh begin a new leg of their journey across Canada today. Indeed, on Tuesday, October 8, the royal couple will make their way to friendly Manitoba where they will spend a unique day. Upon their arrival in Winnipeg, they will be greeted by children of all ages at the Forks, a national historic site of Canada. There, a youth multicultural showcase will profile the rich diversity of Canadian society.

Following this event, Her Majesty, accompanied by the Premier of Manitoba, will depart by boat and disembark at Taché Quay in my great riding of Saint Boniface. In the evening, youth from across Manitoba and extraordinary athletes from across the province will attend a dinner inside the legislative building. This special dinner will be preceded by a spectacular outdoor celebration during which Her Majesty will unveil the newly restored Golden Boy, a cherished symbol of our province. The royal couple will also be entertained by the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra and Ms. Loreena McKennitt.

Their stay in our province promises to be truly memorable.

The EnvironmentStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Joe Comartin NDP Windsor—St. Clair, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is with great distress that I read this weekend that an ecosystem almost five times the size of Prince Edward Island is on the brink of dying. Because of federal government cuts, scientists cannot even tell us why this is occurring to Lake Erie.

Funding cuts to Environment Canada made by the former finance minister have critically compromised research, monitoring and remedial action for the Great Lakes. As well, the Canada-Ontario agreement respecting the Great Lakes basin lapsed for two years. It was only signed about six months ago and nothing has been done to implement it.

Lake Erie is the shallowest of the Great Lakes and serves as the bellwether for all the others. As Lake Erie goes, so do all the Great Lakes. I urge the government to properly fund and implement the COA and revive this vital ecosystem. Or is it just going to stand on the sidelines and let it die?

Highway InfrastructureStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

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

Mr. Speaker, unfortunately, highway 185 continues to take its toll in human lives. Only weeks after the Prime Minister of Canada's announcement that over $400 million would be invested in one section of a New Brunswick highway, with a statement that Témiscouata would have to wait, the 185 has taken three more lives.

This is an unacceptable situation and the federal government absolutely must announce major investment in highway 185 this very autumn. It is, after all, part of the Trans-Canada Highway.

The Government of Quebec has committed to meeting 50% of the costs of this project. It has, moreover, already undertaken to remedy the most dangerous situations. Over $20 million has been invested at Notre-Dame-du-Lac and a similar amount will be committed by the Government of Quebec for Dégelis and Saint-Antonin in the coming year, as part of a $225 million plan.

The entire project, however, requires in excess of $600 million, and we are still waiting on the federal government's share. This is unacceptable.

My message for the Prime Minister: Invest in the 185. It is urgent and to us it is a priority.

The EconomyStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Bonnie Brown Liberal Oakville, ON

Mr. Speaker, last week in West Virginia, the United States Business Council held its annual meeting. The American CEOs assembled there said that a war against Iraq could spell trouble for the fragile U.S. economy. The overall impact would be negative, they predicted, because energy prices would rise sharply and potential travellers would stay home.

The CEO of J.P. Morgan said that the prospect of war is another negative with respect to capital markets and equity markets. Another one said that war would have a depressive impact on the economy and would delay the start of business investment. Another said “I don't think another $100 billion tax on U.S. citizens is a good thing”.

All this negative commentary on the effect of war on the U.S. economy should concern Canadian business persons because Americans are the biggest purchasers of Canadian products. Canadian investors too should be concerned about the effect of war on the equity markets and therefore on their own portfolios.

Breast Cancer Awareness MonthStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Norman E. Doyle Progressive Conservative St. John's East, NL

Mr. Speaker, October is breast cancer awareness month. Yesterday, October 6, marked the 11th annual run for the Canadian fundraiser. An estimated 135,000 people in 34 Canadian cities raised more than $13 million for breast cancer research and treatment.

The unfortunate truth is that almost every one of us knows someone with breast cancer. The Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation estimates that 20,500 women will develop breast cancer in 2002 and expects about a quarter of these cases to be fatal. Those statistics represent our mothers, sisters, wives, daughters and friends.

May I also highlight today the activities of three women from Saint John, New Brunswick, Pearl Morrell, Kim Chenier and Sharon Randell, who are supporting the cause by collecting and selling autographed teacups from celebrities and public figures.

I wish to say congratulations to all those who took part in yesterday's Run for the Cure.

LiteracyStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Andy Scott Liberal Fredericton, NB

Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to rise in the House today to congratulate the National Adult Literacy Database, NALD, for earning the International Reading Association prize conferred by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, UNESCO.

NALD is a national, New Brunswick-based, not-for-profit organization that provides non-profit literacy organizations in Canada with free website design and maintenance resources.

NALD's executive director, Fredericton's own Charles Ramsey, accepted the award last week at a best practices national workshop on literacy. NALD is the first Internet site to receive such an award from UNESCO.

I ask members to please join me in congratulating NALD for this prestigious recognition of its world-class production quality, content and service to the literacy community of Canada.

Government of CanadaStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Jay Hill Canadian Alliance Prince George—Peace River, BC

Mr. Speaker, today the government invoked closure to enable it to reinstate its old bills. One would think that the Liberals would want Canadians to forget this Parliament's first session but here are the top ten reasons why they will not: number ten, voting down an Alliance motion to implement their Liberal red book promise of an independent ethics commissioner; number nine, Alfonso Gagliano; number eight, cross burnings; number seven, cabinet suggesting journalists should come up with a code of ethics for themselves when the cabinet was up to its eyeballs in scandals; number six, Groupaction; number five, Grand-Mère Golf Club and Inn; number four, over 12,000 pages of Hansard , in both official languages, proving this government had nothing to say; number three, 1,500 pages from the Auditor General, in both official languages, proving she had a lot to say; number two, dragging a priest into a government cover-up over a holiday stay at a rich guy's place; and, the number one reason why Liberals should be ashamed of the first session--it firmly established their government as the most ethically deficient government in Canadian history and that is saying something.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the Solicitor General has done the following: given out a sole source contract contrary to the rules; failed even to respect the sole source rules in extending the contract; given the contract to the firm of his own official agent; given the work to a former bureaucrat not named in the contract; admitted in the House that the work extended beyond the terms of the contract; and established links between the principals of this contract and his own lobbying for a grant application for his brother's college. I should add that he failed to give straight answers to any of these things either inside or outside the House.

Why is the minister still in the cabinet?

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Cardigan P.E.I.

Liberal

Lawrence MacAulay LiberalSolicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I released a statement last week to clarify the facts of the contract and I stand by that statement. The contract was awarded according to Treasury Board guidelines. We have done important work with this contract.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, apparently the minister is just going to keep reading from his script rather than give anybody in here or outside the House a straight answer.

The only thing transparent in the government is the Prime Minister's obvious double standard. The Solicitor General awarded an untendered sole source contract to his friend and two-time official agent. Everett Roche signed the contract and benefited from it.

Of the former defence minister, the Prime Minister stated, “He helped a friend, and in the guidelines you cannot give favourable treatment to a friend or a family member”. The defence minister was fired. When the defence minister was fired, why is the Solicitor General defended?

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalDeputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, we have a certain declaration of the facts by the Solicitor General. He put out a clear list a couple of days ago of what happened, including the publishing of this contract on the MERX system which gives rise to the possibility of a contract being objected to. Furthermore the ethics counsellor is looking into the situation which is an appropriate step to be taken.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister said of the defence minister's firing that this “will teach a lesson to all of us”. Apparently not everyone on that side is a very quick learner.

The fact remains that the Solicitor General orchestrated a contract that directly benefited his friend. Now the government is condoning rewarding friends and family with taxpayers' money. Does this not show once again why the Prime Minister and cabinet need to be subject to an independent ethics commissioner?

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalDeputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I think the process does speak for itself. There is a process in place to deal with contracts. Where they are let in the circumstances such as in this case, they do need to be published on the MERX system. It gives a right to anybody who may be interested in the contract to apply for it. Those steps were followed in this case in accordance with Treasury Board guidelines.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Kevin Sorenson Canadian Alliance Crowfoot, AB

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Solicitor General. Why was the $140,000 contract not signed directly by David Nicholson if, as the Solicitor General professes, this individual's qualifications were so outstanding?

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Cardigan P.E.I.

Liberal

Lawrence MacAulay LiberalSolicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, as I said many times in the House, the contract was awarded under Treasury Board guidelines. It was publicly posted and it was given to a firm, not an individual, which followed Treasury Board guidelines.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Kevin Sorenson Canadian Alliance Crowfoot, AB

Mr. Speaker, there are only two reasons the minister would not contract with Mr. Nicholson directly. First of all, he wanted his old political pal's firm to benefit from the contract, or it was to get around the very strict Treasury Board rules that govern the hiring of former civil servants. Which is it?

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Cardigan P.E.I.

Liberal

Lawrence MacAulay LiberalSolicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, as I said on Friday, the advice was given by a very capable deputy minister, Mr. David Nicholson, and also it was given according to Treasury Board guidelines. These are the facts that I released last Friday in a statement.

TaxationOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, in response to the serious problem of the fiscal imbalance between the federal government and Quebec, the Minister of Finance suggested that the Government of Quebec close its foreign delegations.

Does the Minister of Finance realize that closing Quebec's foreign delegations would only make up for two weeks' worth of the fiscal imbalance? There would still be 50 weeks left to deal with. Does he not comprehend that the problem is much more serious than he implies?

TaxationOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalDeputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, does the member comprehend that there is no fiscal imbalance, since both levels of government have the same right to raise taxes or decrease spending?

It is not for me to suggest how a provincial government can deal with pressures. However, it is important to recognize that, for the past 20 years, provincial revenues have exceeded federal revenues.