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House of Commons Hansard #66 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was general.

Topics

EthicsOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I have checked the file and these rules were in fact established by the Conservative government before we came. It apparently was used by two ministers at that time. Mr. Wilson, who was in charge at the time, used the rule that was established by the member who was a member of cabinet at that time and who is now the leader of the fifth party in the House of Commons.

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Joe Clark Progressive Conservative Calgary Centre, AB

Mr. Speaker, that is not true.

Despite the confusion about the government's position on Iraq, Canada still has the experience and the reputation to play a leading role in any reconstruction in Iraq.

This weekend the U.S. administration held a high level meeting to review plans for reconstruction in the event that Saddam Hussein leaves or is overthrown. The meeting discussed the role of both U.S. and international agencies. Other countries participated in that meeting, including Great Britain and Australia.

Will the Prime Minister advise whether Canada took part in that meeting? Was Canada even invited?

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham LiberalMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, as I have said, Canada has been engaged in many meetings at the United Nations and elsewhere. We are actively pursuing the role that we would take in the event of any problems in the area of Iraq.

We will continue to do so, but we are concentrating at this time on ensuring that we get a peaceful resolution to this problem.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Diane Ablonczy Canadian Alliance Calgary Nose Hill, AB

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

It has been six days since Ernst Zundel entered our country. Is Ernst Zundel still in Canada?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Bourassa Québec

Liberal

Denis Coderre LiberalMinister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, I will not comment on that issue. I do not comment on specific cases. We have a system. We have a process and I will not interfere in the process.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Diane Ablonczy Canadian Alliance Calgary Nose Hill, AB

Mr. Speaker, the minister has also failed to get the job done on another front.

The Federal Court of Canada ruled Friday that the immigration committee was misled and the minister did not inform Parliament of the error when it became evident; that the minister effectively disregarded provisions in Canadian law; and that he neglected his duty to process close to 100,000 immigrant applications from applicants who had paid him their money.

The minister misled Parliament and broke trust. Why did he do that?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Bourassa Québec

Liberal

Denis Coderre LiberalMinister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, I am sorry if the member had a bad weekend but one thing is sure: since the beginning we have put all the numbers on the table.

I will not comment because there is a draft decision. However when we were on the standing committee, where the hon. member and her predecessor were, we put all the numbers on the table.

I have full confidence in my department. It has done a tremendous job. We put a pragmatic approach on the table. Nobody misled anybody.

Oil and Gas PricesOral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Bloc

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

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Industry is responsible for the Competition Bureau and must call for an inquiry into the behaviour of the oil and gas companies, which curiously have all reached the same price decisions at the same time, at the consumer's expense.

Instead of denying any possibility of collusion between them, ought the minister not to be explaining to us why all of these companies, together and at the same time, have raised their profit margin for refining by 100%, as has just occurred? Is this, according to the minister, just pure chance?

Oil and Gas PricesOral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Etobicoke Centre Ontario

Liberal

Allan Rock LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, 18 months ago, the Competition Bureau received an indepth study on the oil and gas companies. It concluded that there was no collusion between these companies.

What is really bothering the hon. member is the price at the pump. I will say again this week what I said last week, which is that regulating retail prices is up to the provincial governments.

Oil and Gas PricesOral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Bloc

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

Mr. Speaker, 18 months ago, heating oil cost 39¢, and now it costs 62¢ before taxes.

How can the government justify the fact that no assistance for consumers is planned when, on the eve of the 2000 election, the price of heating oil constituted a major priority for this government, even though the price per litre was far less than it is now?

Oil and Gas PricesOral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Etobicoke Centre Ontario

Liberal

Allan Rock LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, several factors have affected the price of gas and oil, including a strike in Venezuela, the winter we have had this year in North America, and the heavy pressures relating to the international situation.

The hon. member has ignored those factors. However, the bottom line is this: at the Competition Bureau, we always keep an eye on the market in order to ensure there is no collusion.

TaxationOral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Monte Solberg Canadian Alliance Medicine Hat, AB

Mr. Speaker, for some reason the government does not seem to understand that a universal child care deduction for all families is in the best interests of all children. Parents should get equal treatment from the government when it comes to the form of child care that they choose.

Why does the Prime Minister and the government think that regulated day care and regulated day care alone is worthy of the support of the government? Why does the government continue to discriminate against stay at home parents?

TaxationOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Shefford Québec

Liberal

Diane St-Jacques LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, I wish to inform the hon. member that there is already a range of possibilities and measures to which people have access, including deductions at the source. I do not think that the hon. member will object to day care services.

The government will invest $935 million in day care services. Also, we already have the national child benefit. I do not think the hon. member can be opposed to the poorest in our society.

TaxationOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Monte Solberg Canadian Alliance Medicine Hat, AB

Mr. Speaker, surely the member did not misunderstand the question. What I am asking is why the government discriminates against certain forms of child care. People who choose to look after their own children at home should be treated equally in the tax code, the same as people who choose to send their children to day care. That is the issue.

Why does the government, after nine years continue to perpetuate a system that discriminates against some parents?

TaxationOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Shefford Québec

Liberal

Diane St-Jacques LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, I think the hon. member simply did not understand my reply. There are already, for families, means to have access to the child credit. I am referring to deductions at the source for children. Moreover, we are helping poor families with day care services.

The BudgetOral Question Period

February 24th, 2003 / 2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Réal Ménard Bloc Hochelaga—Maisonneuve, QC

Mr. Speaker, according to the budget, the federal government will invest $45 million over five years to increase participation in sports so that children and youth can engage in physical exercise at school.

Can the Minister of Health tell us how she intends to reach youth in schools, when she has no constitutional authority to go into the schools?

The BudgetOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Simcoe North Ontario

Liberal

Paul Devillers LiberalSecretary of State (Amateur Sport) and Deputy Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, this week, I met with my provincial and territorial counterparts, and we discussed Canada's sports policy.

In fact, an essential part of one of the action plans is better cooperation with the provinces and territories to increase involvement in physical education in schools.

We are ready to work with our sports system partners.

The BudgetOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Réal Ménard Bloc Hochelaga—Maisonneuve, QC

Mr. Speaker, does the minister know that the Quebec government has just recently created the “Ça bouge après l'école” program, the precise purpose of which is to keep youth physically active. Consequently, what is the minister waiting for to transfer the Quebec government its share of the funding?

The BudgetOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Simcoe North Ontario

Liberal

Paul Devillers LiberalSecretary of State (Amateur Sport) and Deputy Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, we are presently working with the provinces and territories on bilateral agreements for such programs. We are still awaiting the provinces' requests. We are ready to work with our sports system partners.

InfrastructureOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

James Moore Canadian Alliance Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, Canadians paid $7 billion in federal gas taxes last year: $4.8 billion in excise taxes and $2.2 billion in GST on the fuel and its excise taxes. That is $7 billion in gas taxes, $222 per Canadian. The Liberals will spend $9 per Canadian on infrastructure this year.

Canadians pay $222 each in gas taxes annually. Do they not deserve more than $9 each in infrastructure payments?

InfrastructureOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Vaughan—King—Aurora Ontario

Liberal

Maurizio Bevilacqua LiberalSecretary of State (International Financial Institutions)

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member knows that our three infrastructure programs are approximately $8 billion.

In reference to the issue of tax cuts, the hon. member must remember the fact that we were the party that introduced $100 billion in tax cuts. The average family is saving approximately 27%. That to me is responsible governing.

InfrastructureOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

James Moore Canadian Alliance Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, we are still waiting for that GST tax cut though.

On average, Canada's provinces invest 91% of their gas tax revenue in roads. The federal Liberal government invests 4% in roads. Let me say that again. The average of Canadian provinces is 91% of gas tax revenue invested in roads. The federal government invests only 4% in roads.

Given this track record of provinces building roads while Ottawa pads its general revenue slush fund, why will the government not cut gas taxes and leave the financing of roads to the level of government that actually builds them and does it in a fiscally responsible way?

InfrastructureOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Vaughan—King—Aurora Ontario

Liberal

Maurizio Bevilacqua LiberalSecretary of State (International Financial Institutions)

Mr. Speaker, I do not understand what the hon. member is saying about tax cuts. After all, when we travelled the country and listened to Canadians, what they wanted us to do was in fact to cut the taxes and we have. We have done it with income tax brackets. We have done it with capital taxes. We have raised the small business deduction from $200,000 to $300,000 so that small business can prosper.

Regarding the commitment we have had to infrastructure and roads, anybody can check the record. Indeed it is a very good one.

JusticeOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Karen Redman Liberal Kitchener Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Solicitor General of Canada and pertains to the integrated proceeds of crime initiative.

My riding of Kitchener Centre has been plagued by the prevalence of marijuana home grow operations which are linked to organized crime.

Budget 2003 provides $46.6 million over the next two years to continue the integrated proceeds of crime initiative. Could the Solicitor General tell the House how this funding will help combat organized crime and how this funding will assist Waterloo Regional Police and the RCMP in fighting organized crime in Kitchener?

JusticeOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Malpeque P.E.I.

Liberal

Wayne Easter LiberalSolicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the member for Kitchener Centre for her question and her concern on this particular issue.

The funding that was announced in the February 18 budget means that IPOC will continue to pursue assets and money gained illegally. To date the program has contributed to seizures of criminal assets of more than $215 million and forfeitures of more than $86 million. It has referred cases worth $89 million to other jurisdictions in Canada and abroad.

The government will continue to work hard on this issue. What we are trying to do is to take the profits out of crime.