House of Commons Hansard #36 of the 37th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was budget.


Canada National Parks ActGovernment Orders

6 p.m.

Some hon. members


Canada National Parks ActGovernment Orders

6 p.m.

The Deputy Speaker

The question is on the motion. Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

Canada National Parks ActGovernment Orders

6 p.m.

Some hon. members


(Motion agreed to, bill read the second time and referred to a committee)

Canada National Parks ActGovernment Orders

6 p.m.

The Deputy Speaker

I declare the motion carried. Accordingly, the bill stands referred to the Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

April 19th, 2004 / 6 p.m.

Sackville—Musquodoboit Valley—Eastern Shore Nova Scotia


Peter Stoffer NDPfor the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development

moved that Bill C-31, an act to give effect to a land claims and self-government agreement among the Tlicho, the Government of the Northwest Territories and the Government of Canada, to make related amendments to the Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts, be read the second time and referred to a committee.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6 p.m.

Yukon Yukon


Larry Bagnell LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development

Mr. Speaker, I am very excited to be able to rise today on such an auspicious day as the day of the aboriginal summit, where 70 first nations leaders from across the country, at the invitation of the Prime Minister, met and talked about moving the partnership and the agenda forward.

To move this forward, we have a perfect example of that spirit of today in action as we bring Bill C-31 to the House. I think there is general support for the spirit of self-government and land claims among first nations so I think today is an exciting day for everyone in the House.

I rise to support Bill C-31, which would give force to the Tlicho land claims and self-government act. By enacting this legislation, we honour Canada's longstanding and respectful relationship with the Tlicho people.

Last year, following more than a decade of negotiations among the Tlicho and the Governments of Canada and the Northwest Territories, an agreement was signed. This agreement is the central feature of the bill before us today.

Bill C-31 will achieve certainty for the exercise of the Tlicho aboriginal and treaty rights within their traditional territory, over almost 20% of the Northwest Territories. It will resolve outstanding land claims, which have been a barrier to economic development, and it provides the Tlicho with self-government powers and control of land and resources, which will enable them to become true partners in the growth and development of the Northwest Territories.

Under Bill C-31, the Tlicho will gain control of 39,000 square kilometres of land, which represents approximately 19% of their traditional territory. The legislation will also ensure that the Tlicho play a significant role in the management of land, water and other resources in most of their traditional territory.

This legislation enables the Tlicho to realize their inherent right to self-government. Bill C-31 would see the creation of the Tlicho government, democratically elected and accountable to its citizens. The Tlicho government, elected by Tlicho citizens, would have jurisdiction over social and cultural issues and use of Tlicho lands and resources.

In essence, Bill C-31 provides access to the governance tools needed to safeguard culture, improve social services, and bolster the economy. I am convinced that the Tlicho leaders, given their astute approach to development, will put these tools to good use.

The Tlicho have entered into a 10 year intergovernmental services agreement with the Governments of the Northwest Territories and Canada to harmonize delivery of social programs and services to all residents of Tlicho communities through the creation of an agency to be established under territorial legislation.

Under the terms of the Tlicho agreement, community governments will be created by territorial legislation, in each of the four Tlicho communities, to exercise municipal types of powers. Much like municipal councils across Canada, these governments would operate water and road services and enact zoning bylaws.

Not all residents of these communities are Tlicho. To ensure that the interests of all citizens are represented adequately, the agreement includes specialized election rules and regulations. For example, non-Tlicho citizens can qualify to vote, and 50% of council seats will be open to non-Tlicho candidates.

The legislation before us would guarantee Tlicho representation on the Mackenzie Valley Land and Water Board, alongside other aboriginal peoples. The Tlicho would also receive a share of royalties from resource development in the Mackenzie Valley.

The legislation includes a payment of approximately $150 million over the next 14 years. The Tlicho wisely have chosen to use their initial payments of this money to repay debts accumulated during negotiations and to invest approximately $500,000 per year in post-secondary scholarships for local students. This careful, long term strategy is rooted in Tlicho tradition. At the heart of this ancient culture is a capacity to adapt to change, an ability to thrive under challenging conditions.

Several years ago, a former chief, Jimmy Bruneau, recognized that the Tlicho needed to make a concerted effort to prepare for the future and protect their way of life from a rapidly spreading flood of powerful cultural and economic influences. Chief Bruneau spoke of the need to “be strong like two people”, to blend northern and southern cultures and to learn from aboriginal and non-aboriginal sources.

Today, the wisdom of Chief Bruneau's strategy is evident in the success of several Tlicho endeavours. Local businesses, for example, are earning substantial revenues by serving the diamond industry. A committee services board ensures local control of schools in four Tlicho communities and the Tlicho have also developed a run of the river hydroelectric generating facility, an airport and a long term care facility. Each of these accomplishments resulted from the Tlicho's ability to negotiate successful partnerships with governments and private sector organizations.

The Snare Cascades generating plant, for instance, was made possible by an agreement between the Tlicho and the territorial power utility. Many of the social services enjoyed by the Tlicho are delivered through a deal with the government of the Northwest Territories. This collaborative approach has also led to significant economic development.

The Tlicho negotiated an impact and benefits agreement with both Diavik and BHP, the two largest diamond mining firms in the region that support this claim. These agreements have helped provide jobs and training opportunities for Tlicho people and contracts for aboriginal firms. A partnership between Nishi-Khon and SNC Lavalin recently received a prestigious engineering award for work on the Diavik mine site.

Diamond mining in the Northwest Territories continues to draw the attention of international investors and companies not only for the quality of gems extracted, but also for the calibre of local contractors. The partnership formed among the aboriginal and non-aboriginal companies are helping to build capacity in northern communities, ensuring a sustainable and stable economy.

Today, aboriginally owned companies in the Northwest Territories generate more than $100 million in annual revenue and employ more than 1,000 people. This economic activity has a significant impact on Canadian prosperity. Stable, self-reliant aboriginal communities are able to participate fully in the national economy. As many people said today at the summit, everyone is interdependent and what helps any of us, helps all of us. The success of Tlicho serves as a model for other first nations, inspiring them to realize dreams of their own.

Thirty-five years ago Chief Jimmy Bruneau and the right hon. Jean Chrétien, Indian affairs minister at the time, shook hands. That event was captured on film and came to symbolize a turning point for both cultures. Today Canada works in partnership with aboriginal communities to help them fulfill their aspirations. The Tlicho, in turn, partner with private and public sector groups to realize culture and economic goals.

The legislation before us would continue this tradition and in fact has already fostered several new partnerships. Prior to finalizing the deal at the centre of Bill C-31, the Tlicho negotiated overlap agreements with its aboriginal neighbours. These agreements clearly delineate the rights and responsibilities of all parties.

A close examination of Bill C-31 would reveal that the Tlicho people have done their homework. They have conducted hundreds of consultations and information sessions. The Tlicho people voted overwhelmingly to ratify this agreement. More than 93% of the eligible voters cast votes and more than 84% opted for the agreement. In October 2003 the Government of the Northwest Territories also ratified it.

I am convinced that Bill C-31 will usher in a new era of improved relations among first nations and Canadian governments. The signatures on the agreement confirm that the comprehensive claim process works, that careful negotiation can produce a deal that satisfies the needs of aboriginals and non-aboriginals alike.

I would like to express my appreciation for the care, perseverance and initiative of the Tlicho leaders during 10 years of negotiations. By consulting with aboriginal communities, stakeholders and the general public, they have helped make the agreement more powerful, relevant and effective.

The agreement at the heart of Bill C-31 is significant for a number of reasons. It is the first of its kind in the Northwest Territories and the first in Canada to combine land claims and self-government in a single document since the Nisga'a treaty. The Tlicho agreement is sure to inspire renewed confidence at negotiating tables across the country. First nation leaders will consider Bill C-31 an important milestone that provides a clear way forward under Canada's inherent right policy.

The bill demonstrates that the Government of Canada can work with aboriginal people to arrive at agreements tailored to the specific needs of each community. This agreement was signed on behalf of the people of Canada and I believe it is incumbent upon us to do our utmost to ensure that a decade's worth of hard work will not be in vain.

At today's aboriginal summit Phil Fontaine talked about a study by Harvard University and what was needed for success among communities. It was found that genuine self-rule which provides first nations with the power to control what happens on first nations lands and capable governing institutions that exercise power responsibly and reliably are the key.

That is exactly what the agreement in Bill C-31 would do. We have been entrusted in the House of Commons with the aspirations of a people. Today, I ask the House for its support in providing the tools needed to build the community envisioned by the Tlicho people and I ask the House to adopt Bill C-31.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:10 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

John Duncan Canadian Alliance Vancouver Island North, BC

Mr. Speaker, I have three questions for the parliamentary secretary that relate to the agreement.

There is a statement in the agreement that Tlicho laws will be concurrent with territorial and federal laws. I would like the parliamentary secretary's interpretation of what that means. When it comes to anyone looking at an agreement, concurrence is a concept that makes it very difficult when we have two sets of laws. Somewhere along the line someone has to pick one or the other. I do not know why the government has built that into the agreement.

My second question relates to the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. There is a statement in the agreement that talks about persons to whom Tlicho laws apply that will have rights and freedoms “no less than those set out in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms”. I always understood that the charter was the charter. I am just wondering why there would be a statement that seems to dilute our charter by comparing it with some other base line.

My third question is, can the parliamentary secretary give me any clarification as to the ongoing Métis litigation in terms of this agreement? As we know, the Sahtu agreement just to the north of the Tlicho was comprehensive in that it included the Dene and the Métis. This agreement appears not to do so. It includes the Dene and I understand the southern Slave Métis organization is actively a part of this set of negotiations, but there is ongoing litigation with the North Slave Lake Métis. Therefore, I am a little surprised that the parliamentary secretary did not address that issue in his speech. I think we have to see these agreements for what they are, wrinkles and all.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:15 p.m.


Larry Bagnell Liberal Yukon, YT

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the hon. member for the three questions. I think they are very thoughtful questions. It is good that he asked them so that the House can understand the answers. I will answer them backwards because I have shorter answers for the last ones.

In relation to the North Slave Métis, the reason I did not bring it up during my speech was, as the member said, because the action is before the courts and as we know, members of Parliament do not comment on actions that are before the courts. However, I can say that most of the members of the North Slave Métis have access to one land claim or another. They are a member on various lists, either the four Tlicho communities or some other list. In that respect, there was not a separate negotiation with the North Slave Métis, although there were attempts originally to somehow work them into the negotiations, but those were not successful. Therefore, we are at that stage.

There is also a clause in the agreement that protects, so it is without prejudice to any other claim holders. If something were to happen later on that was determined that the North Slave Metis did have some rights--and if they won some rights--there is a clause in the Tlicho agreement that would leave that open for that to occur. I think they are protected in that respect and we will let the courts proceed. I cannot comment on the court proceedings.

In relation to the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Charter of Rights and Freedoms applies. That is our policy now, so we put it in any self-government agreement that we are negotiating. Any extra wording is only to make it clear to people who might have that hesitancy or wonder how it applies. It applies fully in the agreements, as per the Constitution and as per the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

The member's first question related to the concurrent laws and their interpretation. We can have concurrent governments in two different ways. We can have three provinces, such as Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Alberta, that have concurrent laws. They are all doing their own thing in different areas. We can have different orders of government, such as the municipal government creating laws for roads, provincial government creating laws for health care and the federal government creating laws for defence. We can have concurrent things going on.

In the case of overlap, where we are into the same area of jurisdiction with the federal government,--and the Tlicho agreement has very limited law making powers to start with, so there are not a lot of areas it would be making laws--then the federal law would prevail. There is no contradiction or inconsistency there.

Also, for all intents and purposes, in most cases if there is a conflict with a Northwest Territories law the Tlicho law would prevail because it is basically a parallel government and hopefully the duties of who is doing what will be sorted out so that there is no overlap in jurisdiction.

I can say that to date--with the board that I talked about earlier in my speech, that delivers the social services, health care and education--there is great cooperation between the Government of the Northwest Territories and the Tlicho government. I think they will work out their laws and their services and deliver them very effectively. To some extent they have already done it and this will just be put into NWT law. I think it is a very forward thinking way of having all these governments work together.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:20 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

John Duncan Canadian Alliance Vancouver Island North, BC

Mr. Speaker, Bill C-31 is a land claim and self-government agreement between the Tlicho, earlier known as the Dogrib, the Government of the Northwest Territories and the Government of Canada, and makes amendments to the Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act, and consequential amendments to other acts. Because it is a land claims agreement as well as a self-government agreement, it is constitutionally protected. As well, this is enabling legislation to give effect to the Tlicho tax treatment agreement.

I have many general observations about all this.

The federal government has been essentially carving up the north since the 1980s with the creation of Nunavut, the comprehensive Yukon Indian agreement for the 14 Yukon first nations, and the Gwich'in, the Inuvialuit and the Sahtu land claim agreements in the Northwest Territories. Essentially there are two areas not yet covered with a land claim in the north after the Tlicho, and they are the Akaitcho and Dehcho in the Northwest Territories which border to the south and west of the Tlicho, the agreement we are talking about, which is just north of Yellowknife. I hope that puts it in perspective for some people.

The impression I and others get from reading this agreement is that the federal government is trying to be all things. In the process it has agreed to provisions that contain some contradictions and a deliberate lack of clarity.

To give a bit of background,Stephen Kakfwi, the former premier of the Northwest Territories and the former holder of the aboriginal portfolio as well, promoted a very strong aboriginal and northern ownership agenda. In August last year he suggested that within five years virtually the entire Northwest Territories would live under some form of aboriginal governance. We have had a lot of land claim agreements but we have not had aboriginal governments until this agreement.

Jim Antoine, another longstanding MLA, as the Northwest Territories' resources minister stated that aboriginal governments will become allies in the territories' fight to win control of its resources and the associated royalties from the federal government. That was last August as well.

That gives a little of the flavour of where the territorial government is coming from in respect to this whole issue.

The agreement gives the 3,000 Tlicho people claims to subsurface resources, law-making authority and the power to tax, levy royalties and manage resources on 39,000 square kilometres laying between Great Bear and Great Slave lakes north of Yellowknife. That is an area roughly half the size of New Brunswick. It is bounded on the north by the Sahtu, on the east by Nunavut, and on the south and to the west by the future Akaitcho and Dehcho territories.

I talked a little in my question to the parliamentary secretary about the concurrence issue. I think he explained that reasonably well.

This agreement consumed $27 million in negotiation costs for the Tlicho. This has been a tremendously expensive process and one which I do not think demonstrates a proud record.

I still remain very concerned. The Charter of Rights and Freedoms applies to the Tlicho government in respect to all matters within its authority. That is clear in the agreement. However the agreement states:

protections for Tlicho Citizens and for other persons to whom Tlicho laws apply, by way of rights and freedoms no less than those set out in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms;

That gives me some difficulty.

There are two operating diamond mines in the Tlicho territory that are specifically excluded from the land claim area but remain within the territory. Any future subsurface extraction on Tlicho lands would be subject to a Tlicho royalty regime.

As it stands right now, under the Mackenzie Valley resource sharing agreement the Tlicho get 10.5% of the first $2 million of mineral royalties received by the federal and territorial governments for subsurface resources within the five regions of the Mackenzie Valley and a further 2.1% after the $2 million figure is raised. This brings in about $3.5 million a year to the Tlicho government from the whole basin of the Mackenzie Valley.

The royalties from the existing diamond mines that are specifically excluded from the Tlicho lands, contribute to that formula, which is also shared by the Sahtu, the Gwich'in and others in the Mackenzie Valley region.

The proposed route of the Mackenzie Valley pipeline would not traverse Tlicho lands and therefore is not an issue at this time.

The band is involved in hydro development and is likely to become self-sufficient and a net contributor to the grid for the Northwest Territories.

The largest of the four Tlicho communities, Rae Edzo, is located along the Fraser Highway and the Tlicho government is planning an all-weather highway to link the other three communities, which are Lac la Martre, Snare Lake and Rae Lake.

Taxation provisions of the agreement are a little bit unclear since there is no concluded taxation agreement between Canada and the Tlicho government, although one is to be concluded.

Tlicho citizens would pay GST and income tax. Tlicho government corporations would not pay either tax when conducting business on Tlicho land.

The Indian Act would no longer apply to Tlicho citizens and Tlicho lands would not be considered reserve lands.

Tlicho citizens would have continued access to all federal programs for status and non-status Indians and Metis. The Tlicho government would receive taxes paid to the federal government from Tlicho residents.

The Criminal Code would continue to apply.

There are several other areas I would like to talk about but I will summarize where I will go next time. The first area relates to the provisions for governance and the setting up of a renewable resources board, a land and water board and some of the financial costs and funding details.

This is an agreement that has a $152 million cash settlement to be paid out over 15 years and the Tlicho government will pay off its $27 million negotiating loan in the first six years.

In addition, there is a one time payment of $5 million to an economic development fund to be managed by the Tlicho government. That fund comes from the federal government.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:30 p.m.

The Deputy Speaker

The hon. member for Vancouver Island North will have 10 minutes left in his intervention when this matter is again before the House.

A motion to adjourn the House under Standing Order 38 deemed to have been moved.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActAdjournment Proceedings

6:30 p.m.


Serge Cardin Bloc Sherbrooke, QC

Mr. Speaker, obviously, this adjournment debate stems from the question I asked the Minister of Foreign Affairs on March 30. However, this debate must be put in context and the situation explained. It concerns the Coventry landfill site.

In Coventry, Vermont, a landfill site is located about 760 metres from Black River, a tributary of Lake Memphrémagog. This lake provides drinking water to over 155,000 people, 125,000 of whom live in the town of Sherbrooke alone.

It is important too to remind members that, according to the regional county municipality of Memphrémagog, various samples taken in 2001 and 2003 upstream from a former landfill site in the same area attested to the ongoing contamination of the groundwater by volatile organic compounds.

This landfill site is set to receive 370,000 tonnes of garbage per year, up from 240,000, a matter that greatly concerns the residents of Sherbrooke since this lake is where they obtain their drinking water, as well as people living along the banks of Lake Memphrémagog.

When I was apprised of this situation on March 1, I immediately wrote the Minister of the Environment and the Minister of Foreign Affairs. I received an answer from the Minister of the Environment but not from the Minister of Foreign Affairs. So, I pursued my inquiries on this issue.

On March 30 I asked the minister if he intended to intervene with the International Joint Commission which was established by the Boundary Waters Treaty. When I asked the minister if he could guarantee the House that he would refer this issue to the International Joint Commission in order to ensure a safe supply of drinking water for the people of the Eastern Townships, first, I sensed that the minister was not all that aware of the situation and, second, he referred to the Joint Commission and said that there were two parties and both must agree.

Nevertheless, the act clearly says:

—whenever either the Government of the United States or the Government of the Dominion of Canada shall request that such questions or matters of difference be so referred.

That is a brief extract to say that Canada could intervene if it were aware of the urgency of this matter. We are not assuming at this time that U.S. standards are not being met or are not adequate. However, there is a real fear. Already, right now, we know that the RCM of Memphrémagog and the City of Sherbrooke are investing time, energy and money.

We wonder what the minister will do with this case and what form his intervention will take, since quite a large source of drinking water is at stake. There are some well-grounded fears, considering what I mentioned earlier, concerning samples that have been taken and have proven beyond a doubt that some nasty liquids have found their way into Lake Memphrémagog.

And so, will the federal government undertake to defray costs in some way, and to help the two parties, whether the City of Sherbrooke or the RCM of Memphrémagog, to be well represented, and to ensure that the situation is resolved and safe for everyone?

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActAdjournment Proceedings

6:30 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale Ontario


Bill Graham LiberalMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I am very happy to answer the important questions asked regarding the landfill site enlargement project in Coventry, Vermont. Some facts have to be recognized.

The member knows very well that this project is currently subject to an approval process that is open to public discussion. The first of the two processes undertaken by the State of Vermont will be the Act 250 Process. This review of the landfill enlargement project is currently under way. The Vermont Solid Waste Management Program is also planning an independent review, a technical review process, that should be open to the public for observation purposes at the latest this spring.

Vermont officials have assured us that the comments made by Quebec will receive the same consideration as the ones made in Vermont. I should point out that up to now, the Memphrémagog regional county municipality has been involved in the process and is considering asking for party status. This would give the municipality all possible privileges, including the right to appeal once a decision has been reached. If such a request should be made, other hearings would be held to consider its concerns.

My colleagues, the members for Compton—Stanstead and Brome—Missisquoi, are greatly interested in this matter and, with citizens from the region, even went to Vermont to state their point of view. They have been very active in this case through solid actions, not just words.

The concerns expressed by the members and their constituents are valid and serious and we have raised them with our American counterparts. Officials from my department are in constant contact with officials from the Government of Vermont, the United States Environmental Protection Agency, and the State Department, in order to obtain more information on the expansion project and to get across the concerns of Canadians.

In the past, concerns had been raised about an unlined landfill near the Black River wetlands. The landfill was closed in 1992; nonetheless, low levels of contamination were recorded. Accordingly, the State of Vermont proposed transferring the waste to a lined landfill.

This expansion project will be located on soil that is more suitable for such a landfill. We have received technical documents on the project that Environment Canada is currently reviewing. The Quebec Department of the Environment is also in contact with the State of Vermont in order to discuss this project.

Given the good cooperation and the open process initiated by the State of Vermont, we do not believe it would be appropriate at this time to bring this case before the International Joint Commission. Referrals to the commission are usually made as a last resort in order to resolve an issue that cannot be resolved bilaterally or through local processes. If Canadians' concerns are not taken into consideration, other options, including the possibility of a referral to the commission, will have to be examined.

I must add that, to date, referrals to the commission have always been made jointly by the parties, although it is possible to make them individually. That is another reason why we are continuing to discuss the matter with our American colleagues.

For now, I assure hon. members that we are very active. This is not the time to bring this matter before the International Joint Commission. Currently, the appropriate methods and local processes are in place and we will await the results.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActAdjournment Proceedings

6:35 p.m.


Serge Cardin Bloc Sherbrooke, QC

Mr. Speaker, I understand the Minister of Foreign Affairs' position, but one must also understand the environmental context.

I was a city councillor once. There was a land fill site near a river. Therefore, we must examine the situation as a whole and take into account the authority of the International Joint Commission which has the power not only to solve problems, but also to answer questions and see how two countries can agree on future development and not only on this one project.

It is always risky to build land fill sites too close to rivers and streams, especially when they are a source of drinking water. It is a good thing that the public, the City of Sherbrooke, the RCM and the government are discussing the issue, but we can we make sure that an independent study is conducted in order to develop specific policies for the development of land fill sites in areas where there is drinking water?

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActAdjournment Proceedings

6:40 p.m.


Bill Graham Liberal Toronto Centre—Rosedale, ON

Mr. Speaker, I would like to reiterate my main concerns. The state of Vermont has two processes in place. We will have the opportunity to be present to express our views.

Our colleagues, the hon. members for Compton—Stanstead and Brome—Missisquoi, are directly involved in this exercise. They spoke to Vermont authorities. We are in contact with American authorities. Therefore, we will have the opportunity to explain our position before the appropriate U.S. authorities.

If this is not satisfactory, or if we do not have the opportunity to be heard properly, there is of course the joint commission, but it is always a last resort.

I urge the hon. member to give the process that is in place a chance to work. I am convinced that justice will prevail under the existing process.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActAdjournment Proceedings

6:40 p.m.

The Deputy Speaker (Mr. Bob Kilger)

The motion to adjourn the House is now deemed to have been adopted. Accordingly, this House stands adjourned until tomorrow at 10 a.m., pursuant to Standing Order 24(1).

(The House adjourned at 6:41 p.m.)