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House of Commons Hansard #151 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was police.

Topics

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Howard Hilstrom Canadian Alliance Selkirk—Interlake, MB

Mr. Speaker, the provinces have not even signed on to the program yet, so there is still time to change it.

This minister should understand that farmers, like any other business people, have to build or manage their cash in a manner that reduces their yearly expenses. By having to deposit large sums of cash just to access the APF safety net program, the minister is ensuring that any losses on the farm will be even larger.

Why will the minister not remove the requirement for a cash deposit that is nothing but a hardship for Canadian farmers?

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Prince Edward—Hastings Ontario

Liberal

Lyle Vanclief LiberalMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, I do not know how the hon. member can stand there and say that this program is a hardship. This is a program that provides Canadian farmers the surety that the support of the federal government and the provincial governments will be able to provide to them when serious situations take place.

Yes, the farmers are asked to participate in that themselves, as they have in the past. When we look at the work that has been done by the third party review, it has said very clearly that this program is better than the combinations of programs we have had in the past for farmers, and I think being better is what we are looking for.

BioChem PharmaOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

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

Mr. Speaker, besides Shire's investments in the manufacturing of vaccines, the Bloc Quebecois has learned that, on the issue of revitalizing the BioChem Pharma research laboratory, there is a comprehensive proposal on the table, which has been accepted by both Shire and the Quebec investors financing the revitalization.

However, the Minister of Industry has yet to give his approval. Will the minister reassure us that his approval is forthcoming, because time is of the essence to prevent the exodus of the researchers, who will be forced to leave if the minister does not act quickly?

BioChem PharmaOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Etobicoke Centre Ontario

Liberal

Allan Rock LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, my primary concern is to ensure that the commitments made by Shire are honoured.

BioChem PharmaOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

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

Mr. Speaker, Shire's commitment is very important, but will the minister assure us that he will do everything in his power to ensure that the draft agreement between Shire and the Quebec backers will be approved and finalized?

BioChem PharmaOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Etobicoke Centre Ontario

Liberal

Allan Rock LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, we are working together with the Government of Quebec and all stakeholders to ensure that the best interests of Canada are served.

The EconomyOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Brian Pallister Canadian Alliance Portage—Lisgar, MB

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Auditor General accused the government of cooking the books, again, and she is right, again. Without the EI overcharge, the government is actually in the red this year. This year's pseudo-surplus comes at the expense of working Canadians, again.

Will the minister admit that without the EI overcharge the government is actually running a deficit?

The EconomyOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalDeputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, we run a surplus or a deficit based on revenues minus expenditures. We are the only country in the G-7 that can say we are running a surplus and, this year, for the seventh year in a row.

I know that the hon. member likes to make light of this, but it is a very important achievement. It is an achievement of all Canadians. Canadians should be proud of what they have accomplished.

The EconomyOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Brian Pallister Canadian Alliance Portage—Lisgar, MB

Mr. Speaker, I do not know who the minister thinks he is fooling. The Auditor General is on to him. We are on to him. The Canadian people are on to him.

According to the minister's own budget numbers, he predicts a surplus this year which is less than the amount he is overcharging working Canadians on their EI premiums. By all definitions, that is a deficit.

Will the minister admit to every working Canadian that his imaginary surplus is the result of a very real overcharge on their EI premiums?

The EconomyOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalDeputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, when we were elected we found that the then UI fund was in deficit. It was left that way by the Progressive Conservative Party. We also found the general accounts of the country in a $38 billion deficit, left that way by the Progressive Conservative Party.

Just a couple of weeks ago, a new Liberal government was elected in the province of Ontario, succeeding a Conservative government that claimed a balanced budget, and the new government found a $5.6 billion deficit.

I do not need to take lessons from those people about what a surplus is and what a deficit is.

Natural ResourcesOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Dave Chatters Canadian Alliance Athabasca, AB

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Natural Resources now has had 24 hours to review the invitation to proponents for the ethanol expansion program.

Could the minister confirm to the House that constituents can consult with their member of Parliament without fear that their application will be disqualified from the ethanol expansion program?

Natural ResourcesOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Liberal

Nancy Karetak-Lindell LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, the ethanol expansion program does not in any way restrict the right of ethanol proponents to discuss their ethanol projects with their members of Parliament, nor from discussing current or future government funding for ethanol with members of Parliament.

Natural ResourcesOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Dave Chatters Canadian Alliance Athabasca, AB

Mr. Speaker, despite any legal definition, Canadians believe that members of Parliament are government officials. As of noon today, the application form on the government website had not been changed. When will the application form be amended to ensure that there is no confusion in this regard?

Natural ResourcesOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalMinister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, I think what the hon. member may be misunderstanding is the fact that this is a formal request for proposal process. It does have some legal requirements around it. The language that is used is the typical language that is used when we are soliciting proposals from the public which will then have to be adjudicated upon in a competitive fashion.

There is certainly no intention and no requirement to restrict people from talking with their members of Parliament.

The EconomyOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Bloc

Suzanne Tremblay Bloc Rimouski-Neigette-Et-La Mitis, QC

Mr. Speaker, in last Monday's economic statement, we learned that 87% of the $2.3 billion surplus for 2003-04 will have been taken from the employment insurance fund. That is real highway robbery.

How can the government accept the fact that the surplus funds it pockets year after year are taken not only from the pockets of the workers who contribute to the EI fund, but also from the unemployed, who have been brutally denied access to EI benefits?

The EconomyOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalDeputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the unemployed do not pay into the fund, they receive benefits from it. So it is not a tax on the unemployed.

As hon. members are well aware, we are currently engaged in public consultations on the employment insurance fund. There will be changes for 2005, and revenue will more or less offset benefits paid out.

CinarOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Bloc

Richard Marceau Bloc Charlesbourg—Jacques-Cartier, QC

Mr. Speaker, on Monday, the Solicitor General replied to a question about CINAR, saying, and I quote:

—I cannot comment on this matter. I will take it under advisement and get back to the member.

I am asking the Solicitor General if he is ready to get back to me today.

CinarOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Malpeque P.E.I.

Liberal

Wayne Easter LiberalSolicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, as I informed the member the other day, I will take the question under advisement and report back when I have the information. I do not have that information yet.

HealthOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

James Lunney Canadian Alliance Nanaimo—Alberni, BC

Mr. Speaker, under the new natural health products directorate, the minister has committed a mere $1 million a year for research on non-patentable NHPs, products which could greatly improve the health outcomes of Canadians. That is a whopping one-tenth of one per cent of what the government commits to medical research through the CIHR and other agencies.

Does the Minister of Health really think that $1 million is sufficient funding to advance health care avenues that hold such great promise? Does she really believe that such research should only be done by medical doctors and dentists?

HealthOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Edmonton West Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan LiberalMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, the government spends a significant amount of money on all forms of health and medical research. The allocation of those dollars obviously is done in consultation with those in my department and key stakeholders who perform that research.

I am sorry if the hon. member does not think that amount is enough. If he would like to talk to me about it, I would be more than willing to listen to his concerns.

The EnvironmentOral Question Period

3 p.m.

NDP

Yvon Godin NDP Acadie—Bathurst, NB

Mr. Speaker, a public servant in the Government of New Brunswick, Simone Godin, states that the Bennett Environmental project at Belledune is based on the absence of regulations in New Brunswick governing dangerous waste. The province is very vulnerable, because there is no legislation dealing specifically with the management of toxic waste.

Under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, the Minister of the Environment may refuse entry to dangerous wastes, if they will not be managed in a manner that will protect the environment and human health.

Will the Minister of the Environment intervene at Belledune because the province has no regulations governing toxic waste?

The EnvironmentOral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

Victoria B.C.

Liberal

David Anderson LiberalMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, so far, there have been no requests for permits to import toxic waste or other material to Belledune. When such a request is made, I shall, of course, be ready to examine all aspects of the situation and make a decision based upon the facts.

Presence in GalleryOral Question Period

November 5th, 2003 / 3:05 p.m.

The Speaker

I draw the attention of hon. members, on the occasion of Veterans Week, to the presence in the gallery of distinguished Canadians.

First, there is Mr. Paul Métivier, a veteran of World War I.

In addition, present are veteran of World War II Nursing Sister Hallie Sloan; Korean war veteran, Mr. Harold True; and retired peacekeeper, Mr. Ernest Boutillier.

Presence in GalleryOral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

Presence in GalleryOral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

The Speaker

I also draw the attention of hon. members to the presence in the gallery of Mr. Ryan Malcolm, from Kingston, Ontario, winner of the Canadian Idol competition. I invite all hon. members to meet Mr. Malcolm at a reception at 3:15 p.m. in room 216-N.