House of Commons Hansard #46 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was pornography.

Topics

Question No. 78Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Bill Casey Progressive Conservative Cumberland—Colchester, NS

With respect to the recent oil spill disaster off the north-western coast of Spain, and the sinking of the oil tanker Prestige: a ) what emergency procedures does Transport Canada have in place to deal with such a disaster off a Canadian coast; b ) would Transport Canada lead the response to such a disaster off the Canadian coast; c ) would the responsibilities be shared with other departments and if yes, which ones; d ) does Transport Canada have the resources available today to deal with an oil spill of any capacity off the coasts of Canada; (i) if yes, what are these resources; (ii) if no, is the department working to secure the necessary resources and when will they be available?

Question No. 78Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Markham Ontario

Liberal

John McCallum LiberalMinister of National Defence

Fisheries and Oceans is the lead government agency with respect to oil spills in Canadian waters. In the event of a major oil spill, the commissioner of the Canadian Coast Guard would coordinate and implement the Government of Canada’s response. Although National Defence is not the lead department, the Canadian Forces could provide personnel and logistics assistance, if requested.

Canadian naval vessels are capable of dealing with minor oil spills resulting from their own operations. A more robust capability also exists in Halifax and Esquimalt naval harbours for self-generated in-port incidents. However, the Canadian Forces are not mandated or equipped to deal with a major environmental event similar to the oil spill off the coast of Spain.

Question No. 79Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Bill Casey Progressive Conservative Cumberland—Colchester, NS

With respect to the recent oil spill disaster off the north-western coast of Spain, and the sinking of the oil tanker Prestige: a ) what emergency procedures does the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) have in place to deal with such a disaster off a Canadian coast; b ) would DFO lead the response to such a disaster off the Canadian coast; c ) would the responsibilities be shared with other departments and if yes, which ones; d ) does DFO have the resources available today to deal with an oil spill of any capacity off the coasts of Canada; (i) if yes, what are these resources; (ii) if no, is the department working to secure the necessary resources and when will they be available?

Question No. 79Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Hull—Aylmer Québec

Liberal

Marcel Proulx LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport

The question asked concerns emergency response to an oil spill for which the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) is the lead department. DFO is responsible for developing emergency procedures to deal with such disasters, through the Canadian Coast Guard (http://www.ccg-gcc.gc.ca/rser-ssie/er-ie/main_e.htm).

Transport Canada's role lies more with the prevention of such incidents through regulatory and inspection programs. Although we would not take the lead in a response to such a disaster, our expertise in ships and shipping matters makes us a critical resource department.

With respect to other departments, depending upon the size and location of such a spill, many agencies, departments and even other governments would be involved, as established in national and regional contingency plans. However, DFO is the lead department for these initiatives.

On the responsibility for ensuring that adequate resources are available, this also falls with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans. Their last report to Parliament on this issue should be of interest (http://www.ccg-gcc.gc.ca/rser-ssie/er-ie/rtp/main_e.htm).

Question No. 80Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Bill Casey Progressive Conservative Cumberland—Colchester, NS

With respect to the recent oil spill disaster off the north-western coast of Spain, and the sinking of the oil tanker Prestige: a ) what emergency procedures does the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) have in place to deal with such a disaster off a Canadian coast; b ) would DFO lead the response to such a disaster off the Canadian coast; c ) would the responsibilities be shared with other departments and if yes, which ones; d ) does DFO have the resources available today to deal with an oil spill of any capacity off the coasts of Canada; (i) if yes, what are these resources; (ii) if no, is the department working to secure the necessary resources and when will they be available?

Question No. 80Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

West Nova Nova Scotia

Liberal

Robert Thibault LiberalMinister of Fisheries and Oceans

The answer is as follows:

a) In the event of a pollution incident such as the one off the coast of Spain, the Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) would activate the national response team (NRT), and mobilize all government and industry resources to the impacted area. Should further resources be required, the CCG would call upon its international partners. This response would be conducted in accordance with national, regional and area marine oil spill contingency plans.

b) The CCG, Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO), is the lead federal agency responsible for Canada's oil spill preparedness and response and thus, would lead a response to such an incident.

c) Other government departments may provide assistance to DFO in the event of a pollution incident. These include Environment Canada, who may provide scientific and environmental advice related to shoreline and on-water cleanup operations; Transport Canada, who may provide advice related to the operations and safety of vessels; and the Department of National Defence, who may be called upon to provide personnel or specific logistical assistance.

d) Canada's marine oil spill preparedness and response regime is built upon an essential partnership between government and industry. Canada has four commercial response organizations certified by the CCG to each provide a 10,000 tonnes response capability. In addition, CCG has an inventory of approximately $74 million worth of pollution response equipment located across the country for offshore spills, spills in the Arctic (waters north of 60° latitude) and as a safety net for the industry's capacity. Furthermore, Canada, along with 66 other nations, is signatory to the international convention on oil pollution preparedness, response and co-operation (OPRC). As such, Canada may call upon the other 66 signatories for assistance. In the event of a pollution incident occurring in the contiguous waters between Canada and the U.S., a joint response would be conducted in accordance with the joint marine pollution contingency plan. Canada has a similar agreement with Denmark for the contiguous waters between Canada and Greenland.

Question No. 84Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Ted White Canadian Alliance North Vancouver, BC

With respect to office space occupied by the Department of National Defence in downtown Vancouver on West Pender St.: ( a ) what amount of rent is being paid for the space used by the Recruitment Centre at 1070 West Pender St.; ( b ) what amount of rent is being paid for administrative and/or other offices on the eighth and/or other floors of 1040 West Pender St.; and ( c ) why is it necessary to rent high cost space in downtown Vancouver for these functions?

Question No. 84Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalMinister of Public Works and Government Services

The answer is as follows:

a) Rent for the recruitment centre (288.6 square metres) at 1040 West Georgia (not 1070 West Pender) Street is $154,306 per annum.

b) Rent for DND's Regional Office and Vancouver Detachment/Processing Unit (989.8 square metres) on the eighth floor at 1040 West Georgia Street is $343,378 per annum. Rent for storage space (16.4 square metres) on level P-4 is $2,124 per annum. Rent for parking (3 reserved and 6 random stalls) is $23,040 per annum.

c) In order to maintain existing numbers in the Canadian Armed Forces and to meet expanded needs for the future, DND has made recruitment a priority. The requirement for a downtown location for the recruitment centre was based on the need for a highly visible, attractive and approachable location with maximum exposure to drive-by and wald-by traffic, accessible by public transportation from all areas of greater Vancouver. Having administrative office space in the same building provides efficiencies by facilitating the operation of the recruitment centre.

Question No. 87Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Scott Brison Progressive Conservative Kings—Hants, NS

How much did the Romanow Commission cost and what is the costing breakdown of those expenditures?

Question No. 87Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Bras D'Or—Cape Breton Nova Scotia

Liberal

Rodger Cuzner LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister

The attached schedule is the Privy Council Office’s response to the above question showing the total expenditures for the Commission on the Future of Health Care for 2001/02 and 2002/03. These costs include all actual costs to date and estimated amounts still to be paid. Since the commission’s report was only recently presented there still are various payments outstanding.

Commission on the Future of Health Care in Canada (CFHC)

Question No. 88Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Garry Breitkreuz Canadian Alliance Yorkton—Melville, SK

With respect to statements made by David Austin, a spokesman for the Canadian Firearms Centre, quoted in the November 17, 2002, edition of the Calgary Sun, what evidence does the government have to show that “the new law is working well to reduce crime, safeguard citizens from shooting deaths and help law enforcement keep track of arms movement.”?

Question No. 88Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Outremont Québec

Liberal

Martin Cauchon LiberalMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

The Canadian firearms program is far from being just a registry of firearms. It is an investment in the improvement of public safety through a secure licensing system that prevents people who should not have a firearm, such as individuals with a history of violence, from acquiring firearms. Law-abiding citizens will not be penalized by this program.

Since December 1, 1998, more than 9,000 firearm licences have been refused or revoked by public safety officers. Furthermore, due to the strengthening of verifications, there are now 70 times more licences being revoked than in the last five years of the previous plan as a result of a more solid and efficient system that allows continuous verification of licence holders. Buyers and sellers are also under scrutiny and each sale of a firearm in the country is subjected to a screening process. This clearly helps in keeping persons who should not have a firearm from acquiring one.

The ongoing verification of eligibility is being done through the Canadian firearms registration system, which allows us to ensure that licence holders are continually complying with the requirements of Section 5 of the Firearms Act.

Through the firearms program we are able to help in the reduction of criminal activity and to efficiently monitor licence holders for security purposes. This program also makes it mandatory for new applicants to obtain training in the handling of firearms.

Additionally, millions of firearms have already been registered, especially rifles and shotguns. It was difficult for authorities to trace these firearms under the previous plan. Registration is the link between a firearm and its rightful owner. It strengthens an owner’s accountability for his/her firearms and encourages safe storage of firearms, which reduces the number of accidents and thefts.

Registration of firearms also assists police in their investigations by enabling them to trace firearms to their owners. The issuance of a licence and the registration of a firearm go hand in hand. These two activities help to control access to firearms and to discourage their misuse.

The program is also helping to reduce lost firearms. The number of lost firearms was reduced by 68% between 1997 and 2001, while the number of stolen firearms was diminished by 35% during that same period. (Reference: 2001 Report of the Registrar of the Canadian Firearms Registry on the Administration of the Firearms Act.)

The national weapons enforcement support team (NWEST) implemented by the Department of Justice in January, 2001, is comprised of trained and experienced individuals who help local agencies to enforce the law in the matter of firearms trafficking and smuggling. NWEST also helps the police in the processing of violence records pertaining to firearms. New provisions of the Criminal Code and the Firearms Act establish increased controls over firearm imports and exports and impose penalties for smuggling and trafficking.

On December 3, 2002, the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police reiterated its support for the firearms program and its essential tools for crime control. These tools include the Canadian firearms registry online (CFRO), which helps the police to assess public safety potential threats and to remove, if need be, firearms as a preventive measure. The usefulness of the CFRO is undeniable. Law enforcement communities have consulted this system more than two million times since December 1, 1998. These figures show that police officers frequently refer to CFRO to complete their investigations.

The Canadian firearms program ensures that Canadian communities and homes are safe and secure.

Question No. 89Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Garry Breitkreuz Canadian Alliance Yorkton—Melville, SK

With respect to the Criminal Intelligence Service Canada Annual Report on Organized Crime in Canada for 2002, in the current and past years: ( a ) how many illicit firearms have organized crime groups stolen or obtained by other means from the police and the military; and ( b ) how many legally registered firearms have organized crime groups accessed because they have breached the Restricted Weapon Registration System and/or the Canadian Firearms Registry?

Question No. 89Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Malpeque P.E.I.

Liberal

Wayne Easter LiberalSolicitor General of Canada

The Criminal Intelligence Service Canada (CISC) annual report on organized crime in Canada for 2002 does not refer specifically to: how many illicit firearms organized crime groups have stolen or obtained by other means from the police and the military; nor how many legally registered firearms organized crime groups have accessed because they have breached the restricted weapon registration system and/or the Canadian firearms registry.

Question No. 92Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Ted White Canadian Alliance North Vancouver, BC

With respect to tax debtors who reside in British Columbia, would the government provide a list of references to statutory provisions and court decisions which the Canada Customs and Revenue Agency relies upon for its authority to seize Registered Retirement Saving Plans and Registered Retirement Income Funds?

Question No. 92Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Thornhill Ontario

Liberal

Elinor Caplan LiberalMinister of National Revenue

The authority upon which the Canada Customs and Revenue Agency (CCRA) relies to access funds contained in Registered Retirement Savings Plans (RRSPs) and Registered Retirement Income Funds (RRIFs) is based in section 224 of the Income Tax Act and section 317 of the Excise Tax Act. The CCRA’s authority is not based on court decisions; however, in general terms, court decisions help to clarify the interpretation of legislation.

The policy of the CCRA is that RRSPs and RRIFs are collection avenues of last resort. Attempts to seize funds in a RRSP or RRIF will normally only be taken when other avenues of collection have failed. Furthermore, such actions are only taken on certain types of RRSPs, specifically those containing conditions which allow policy holders to withdraw funds in a plan on request, in the same manner individuals would withdraw funds from their bank account.

The courts have consistently found that those RRSPs and RRIFs containing conditions that lock-in the funds for the specific purpose of providing the policy holder with a retirement savings plan on reaching a certain age, or which contain suitable life-insurance or annuity components, are beyond the reach of all creditors, including the CCRA.

The foregoing is applicable to tax debtors of all provinces, although the CCRA will take into consideration provincial legislation relating to life insurance and annuities.

Question No. 95Routine Proceedings

January 27th, 2003 / 3:25 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Gerald Keddy Progressive Conservative South Shore, NS

Can the government provide information on how many contaminated sites are in the riding of Perth-Middlesex, Ontario and the breakdown of the chemicals that are contaminating these sites?

Question No. 95Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Westmount—Ville-Marie Québec

Liberal

Lucienne Robillard LiberalPresident of the Treasury Board

As of December 6, 2002, the federal contaminated sites and solid waste landfills inventory http://publiservice.tbs-sct.gc.ca/dfrp-rbif/cs-sc/home-accueil.asp?Language=EN did not list any federal contaminated sites in the riding of Perth--Middlesex, Ontario.

Question No. 99Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

NDP

Judy Wasylycia-Leis NDP Winnipeg North Centre, MB

As of December 12, 2002, and since April 5, 2001, have any programmes been funded under the Federal Tobacco Control Strategy and, if so, how much has been spent in each of the following programme areas: ( a ) Director General's office; ( b ) Ministerial Advisory Council on Tobacco Control; ( c ) programme management services; ( d ) regulatory development; ( e ) compliance; ( f ) reports control; ( g ) research and surveillance; ( h ) evaluation; ( i ) best practices in prevention, cessation and protection; ( j ) capacity development; ( k ) model resource development; ( l ) information dissemination; ( m ) mass media; ( n ) policy development and litigation; ( o ) external relations; ( p ) strategic planning and evaluation; and ( q ) knowledge management?

Question No. 99Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Edmonton West Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan LiberalMinister of Health

Following are the expenditures between April 1, 2001, and December 12, 2002, for the federal tobacco control strategy. The tobacco control programme does not track funding for all categories requested which is why zeros appear in three of the programme areas. Capacity development is a facet of the contribution spending, but delineating how much capacity in a receiving organization is enhanced through the carrying out of projects funded under contributions is extremely problematic. Knowledge management is included in (c) Programme Management Services.

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Liberal

Geoff Regan Liberal Halifax West, NS

Mr. Speaker, if Questions Nos. 46, 47, 74, 90, 94, 96 and 97 could be made orders for return, these returns would be tabled immediately.

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

The Speaker

Is that agreed?

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

(Returns Tabled)

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

3:30 p.m.

Liberal

Geoff Regan Liberal Halifax West, NS

Mr. Speaker, I ask that the remaining questions be allowed to stand.

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

3:30 p.m.

The Speaker

Is it agreed that the remaining questions stand?