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House of Commons Hansard #186 of the 37th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was c-55.

Topics

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria LiberalMinister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, it would be important to make one clarification. Contrary to the allegation the member across the way has just made, to date, there has been any police investigation. It is up to the RCMP—again, I invite the hon. member to read the report—to determine if there are grounds for one.

If it does decide there are grounds for one, there will be one. No indication of one has been given. The matter has been referred to the RCMP. That is not the same thing. I am sure the hon. member knows the difference.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Francine Lalonde Bloc Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, given the revelations of the auditor general, it is now obvious to all that Alfonso Gagliano is at the centre of the scandal of concern to us here.

What is this government waiting for before recalling this man who ought never to have ben appointed ambassador, given the situation, in order to have him testify about his actions in a public inquiry?

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria LiberalMinister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, a moment ago, the hon. member informed us, or claimed, that a police investigation was underway. Now she has determined that a public inquiry is underway, in addition to the police investigation, which also has not yet begun.

The hon. member has made two mistakes in as many questions.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Kevin Sorenson Canadian Alliance Crowfoot, AB

Mr. Speaker, under the Liberal government's culture of corruption its first response is to play the blame game: let us blame the media; let us blame the opposition; let us blame old ministers; and now let us blame the auditor general.

Why will the Liberal government not own up to the fact that the culture of corruption is one that it has created and recognize that the Liberals are the ones to blame?

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria LiberalMinister of Public Works and Government Services

On the contrary, Mr. Speaker, I support the work of the auditor general. I asked her to do this report and I tabled it in the House of Commons. The hon. member knows that.

Perhaps he should ask a question of his party's public works critic who questioned that the auditor general was an officer of this House. He said that she was an officer of the government in this House only two days ago.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Kevin Sorenson Canadian Alliance Crowfoot, AB

Mr. Speaker, the public works minister lamely says that the problem has been fixed and he accepts the auditor general's report, but the Deputy Prime Minister spins that this is nothing more than an administrative error. Now the lapdog backbenchers come out and say that no, it is the auditor general and her process that is at fault.

When will members of the government stop playing the blame game and realize that they are the ones who are at fault?

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria LiberalMinister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, the contradictions are just remarkable today. In the first question the hon. member asked me why I was not supporting the auditor general and in the second one he said that he accepts that the minister is supporting the auditor general. I wonder which is his real opinion.

ImmigrationOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Bernard Patry Liberal Pierrefonds—Dollard, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration.

One of the questions we are asked most often by our constituents, whether in connection with sponsoring a family member or regarding permanent residence in Canada for a spouse, is what is the status of their file.

This being Canada's Information Technology Week, can the minister tell us how he intends to respond to their more than legitimate question?

ImmigrationOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Bourassa Québec

Liberal

Denis Coderre LiberalMinister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, this is an extremely important question. Our priority is the efficiency and effectiveness of the system.

This week I had the pleasure of officially launching a new Internet service on my department's website.This service will allow some of our clients to obtain information electronically, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The opposition is not interested in this but the public is.Through this service, people will be able to obtain information on applications for sponsorship or for certain categories of permanent residence, such as family class or spouse.

Finally, our clients can easily track their file at www@cic.gc.ca.

Middle EastOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Diane Ablonczy Canadian Alliance Calgary Nose Hill, AB

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister's betrayal of Canadians does not stop with misusing public money for his own political gain. Now he is also gambling Canada's safety and security so he can grandstand on the international stage. He has offered to bring nine Palestinian terrorists into our country.

Is the Prime Minister hoping to distract from Liberal corruption at home by taking in terrorists from abroad?

Middle EastOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Barrie—Simcoe—Bradford Ontario

Liberal

Aileen Carroll LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, we have received no request, nor have we made any offers about this situation. Canada has not been involved in the negotiations to bring an end to the impasse at the Church of the Nativity, though we have encouraged both sides to end the advancement of violence.

Be assured, Mr. Speaker, that we have always acted and we will continue to act in the best interests of Canadians and in Canadian security.

Middle EastOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Diane Ablonczy Canadian Alliance Calgary Nose Hill, AB

Mr. Speaker, unfortunately that is not what came out of the Prime Minister's mouth. He offered to take these terrorists. Spain has absolutely rejected taking in these terrorists and said doing so would “expose our country to a series of serious risks”.

Middle EastOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Sheila Copps Liberal Hamilton East, ON

Milosevic.

Middle EastOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Diane Ablonczy Canadian Alliance Calgary Nose Hill, AB

CSIS has already identified 50 terrorist groups operating from within Canada. Why on earth would our Prime Minister invite more hardened terrorists into our country?

Middle EastOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Bourassa Québec

Liberal

Denis Coderre LiberalMinister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, we have to be very prudent. Let me reiterate what the Prime Minister said. He said that anything we can do we will do. There is at this time no request for anyone to ask these people to come to Canada. We are supportive of the peace process but for now, no request was made.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, we mentioned the amounts paid in 2001 by the federal government to advertise in L'Almanach du peuple .

Here are the figures for 2002: for the same number of pages, that is 138 pages for Ottawa and 139 pages for Quebec, Quebec paid $58,000, while Ottawa shelled out $668,140. This is for the same number of pages. Mr. Speaker, you are feeling hot because this is truly a burning question.

I would like to know where the overpayment of $610,000 made to L'Almanach du peuple went. Why did the federal government pay $610,000 more than the Quebec government for the same number of pages?

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria LiberalMinister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, the party leader raised this issue yesterday in the House. I asked departmental officials to look into this matter to find out if it is the same thing in both cases, to determine if these are production costs in one case, if other related costs are involved, and so on.

I asked all these questions yesterday. I will inform the House as soon as I get answers.

Innovation StrategyOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Walt Lastewka Liberal St. Catharines, ON

Mr. Speaker, earlier this year the Ministers of Human Resources Development and Industry launched Canada's innovation strategy. The strategy sets out challenges for Canada to remain competitive in a knowledge based economy and recognizes that a long term national commitment and partnership are required if Canada is to take full advantage of the economic potential from the global economy.

Could the Minister of Industry tell the House what he is doing to engage the private sector, academia, all levels of government, Canadians, labour and members of the House in the dialogue about innovation?

Innovation StrategyOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Etobicoke Centre Ontario

Liberal

Allan Rock LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member, in his capacity as chair of the industry committee, has contributed greatly to the preparation of the innovation strategy and I thank him for that contribution.

In February we launched the strategy. We will spend the next few months ensuring that we have it right. We launched today the process of dialogue with Canadians. We have broad support for the dialogue from universities and colleges, labour unions and the private sector.

We intend to use the next few months to ensure we have a concrete plan that we can put before Canadians as a national objective to exploit the full potential of the country, to increase our standard of living and to protect the quality of our lives.

That is our objective and today was an important start toward that goal.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

May 9th, 2002 / 2:55 p.m.

West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast B.C.

Canadian Alliance

John Reynolds Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, let me quote the auditor general from yesterday.

“This is a completely unacceptable way for government to do business. Canadian taxpayers deserve better,” said Ms. Fraser.

What we have seen today is a smorgasbord of sleaze, a banquet of blunders, a feast of failure, a panoply of pork and a cornucopia of corruption. When will we get our independent inquiry?

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria LiberalMinister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, I apologize to the hon. member. I did not hear the totality of the question he just asked. However I want to tell the hon. member that I announced yesterday a series of measures to make the system better and more transparent. They follow a series of other measures that I announced immediately after my arrival, in early February as a matter of fact. They are already on the website of my department. I have referred to them in the House of Commons in the past.

Finally, the auditor general will have a follow up report and then of course she has referred the matter to the RCMP.

Softwood LumberOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Bloc Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, the government's proposed $95 million plan to supposedly assist the softwood lumber industry is insufficient and does not meet the immediate needs of the industry or workers.

Does the government understand that the survival of the softwood lumber industry in Quebec and Canada is at stake, and that all industry stakeholders are demanding nothing less than a serious rescue plan directly targeting large and small sawmills as well as workers?

Softwood LumberOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Etobicoke Centre Ontario

Liberal

Allan Rock LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, we are fully aware of the impact the American actions are having and will have on communities and on the industry in Quebec and elsewhere.

The Government of Quebec has made a positive contribution to Canada-wide efforts to communicate to the U.S. that the duties that have been imposed are unfair and unacceptable.

We will continue to work with our partners in Quebec and elsewhere to ensure that the U.S. is fully aware of our position.

HealthOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Judy Wasylycia-Leis NDP Winnipeg North Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, just about a year ago the health minister stood in the House and voted in favour of warning labels about fetal alcohol syndrome on all beer, wine and liquor bottles. Suddenly this week the health minister revealed she has no intention of keeping her word or respecting the wishes of parliament.

Why? Does this have anything to do with the more than $134,000 in campaign donations the Liberals received in the last election from breweries and distilleries? Is this why the minister changed her mind out of the blue?

HealthOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Edmonton West Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan LiberalMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, no one has changed his or her mind out of the blue. As the hon. member should know, we are reviewing the whole question of mandatory labelling.

As I have told the individual member, surely we must all be focused on the most effective strategies and the best use of our resources to deal with issues like fetal alcohol syndrome and fetal alcohol effects. I would ask the hon. member, as opposed to standing here and suggesting to the public that there are easy answers to complex questions, that she work with us to determine what the most effective strategies are to deal with the issue of fetal alcohol syndrome and its effects.