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House of Commons Hansard #46 of the 37th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was aboriginal.

Topics

FoundationsOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Monte Solberg Canadian Alliance Medicine Hat, AB

Mr. Speaker, obviously the parliamentary secretary does not know what he is talking about. The Auditor General has been calling for and demanding that she have the ability to scrutinize some of these foundations. This government has stonewalled those efforts.

We are talking about $8.7 billion that this Prime Minister helped siphon off into these foundations, away from the prying eyes of the Auditor General. That is a disgrace. This member should be ashamed of hiding that kind of money from the scrutiny of the Auditor General. Why do they do that?

FoundationsOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Scarborough East Ontario

Liberal

John McKay LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the hyperbole of the hon. member's question begs the issue. This money has been very well spent on behalf of Canadians. It has been documented amply in audited reports.

Equally, the Auditor General or any other person can call for those reports at any time because it is within the purview of Parliament.

FisheriesOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Charles Caccia Liberal Davenport, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Fisheries. It regards the species at risk legislation.

Given that endangered species need to be officially listed in order to develop a proper action plan, why has the minister requested the suspension of the scientific panel's recommendations and thus delayed the necessary and urgent action to protect endangered species such as the Atlantic cod?

FisheriesOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Halifax West Nova Scotia

Liberal

Geoff Regan LiberalMinister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, I can assure my colleague that this government is committed to implementing the species at risk act. My first priority is conservation and the sustainable use of all marine resources.

Listing decisions on these populations could have significant impacts on many coastal communities. For this reason, an extended nine month consultation period will take place to find ways to minimize the impact on most communities while rebuilding stocks.

InfrastructureOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Joe Comartin NDP Windsor—St. Clair, ON

Mr. Speak, my question is for the parliamentary secretary for P3s. For 10 years we have watched as corporate scandals have cost investors and pension plans money while this Liberal government has done nothing. The most recent example was Borealis Capital exploiting the Ontario municipal employees' pension plan.

How convenient that the Prime Minister's friend, Richard Mahoney, has close ties to Borealis, a company that is trying to make a quick buck at taxpayer expense for a P3 tunnel in Windsor.

Why are the Liberals willing to hand over public infrastructure to their friends when it is so clear that their friends keep showing they cannot be trusted with public money?

InfrastructureOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Scarborough East Ontario

Liberal

John McKay LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the financing ability of P3s is something that needs to be explored seriously by the hon. member opposite. If he looks at it, it is partnerships, partnerships between the private sector and the public sector, which can in fact unlock huge pools of capital to the benefit of Canadians.

That is what P3s are about. There are tremendous success stories out there that enable P3s to allow public infrastructure to be of benefit to Canadians. I would think that the hon. member should encourage that rather than discourage it.

TaxationOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Pat Martin NDP Winnipeg Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, the Liberals continue to allow their tax fugitive buddies to shift profits to paper companies in Barbados and avoid paying their fair share of taxes in this country. Not only do we lose billions in tax revenue, but it is another reason that investors cannot trust financial statements anymore.

Why will the government not finally outlaw these blatant tax havens or, at the very least, will it follow the United States example and bar these tax fugitives from bidding on any government contracts until they repatriate their companies and start paying their fair share of taxes in Canada?

TaxationOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Brome—Missisquoi Québec

Liberal

Denis Paradis LiberalMinister of State (Financial Institutions)

Mr. Speaker, we have many treaties with a number of countries. The purpose of these treaties is to prevent double taxation and to ensure that all citizens pay their fair share of income tax. We are constantly reviewing these treaties, and it is no different for the countries my hon. friend has mentioned.

Technology Partnerships CanadaOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

James Rajotte Canadian Alliance Edmonton Southwest, AB

Mr. Speaker, the government recently made an interesting $30 million dollar announcement.

Was this $30 million for health care? No.

Was it for our honourable men and women serving us so well? No.

It was $30 million for Rolls-Royce Canada. In fact, over the past four years, the government has given over $80 million to Rolls-Royce Canada. This money is going to a profitable company and will not create one new job in Canada. How can the government justify giving over $80 million to Rolls-Royce Canada?

Technology Partnerships CanadaOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Westmount—Ville-Marie Québec

Liberal

Lucienne Robillard LiberalMinister of Industry and Minister responsible for the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec

Mr. Speaker, the Technology Partnerships Canada program helps us invest in Canadian ideas, carry out strategic research and develop new technologies, not only in large companies, but also in small ones. In fact, 87% of our projects in this country are in small and medium-sized firms that are developing new technology for the benefit of all Canadians.

Technology Partnerships CanadaOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

James Rajotte Canadian Alliance Edmonton Southwest, AB

Mr. Speaker, the government continues to insist that subsidies to Rolls-Royce are actually investments and will be paid back. That is absolute nonsense.

In fact, since 1996, the government has doled out subsidies in excess of $2.5 billion and has recovered less than 2% of that money. That is absolutely shameless. That is a scandal for the taxpayer.

How can the government continue to justify ignoring Canadian patients, ignoring our soldiers and doling over $80 million to Rolls-Royce Canada?

Technology Partnerships CanadaOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Westmount—Ville-Marie Québec

Liberal

Lucienne Robillard LiberalMinister of Industry and Minister responsible for the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec

Mr. Speaker, anyone with a proper grasp of what it means to invest in new technology will be well aware that paybacks take place in the long term and not in the short term. For most projects, paybacks begin after five years. That is absolutely normal.

Many projects have been approved in Alberta and British Columbia. I take it that the hon. member opposite is even against projects that help develop technology in businesses with the potential to succeed on the international level—even those located in western Canada.

Port SecurityOral Question Period

May 3rd, 2004 / 2:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Kevin Sorenson Canadian Alliance Crowfoot, AB

Mr. Speaker, rather than close all security gaps, as recommended by the Auditor General in her report, the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness has in effect created a system of two tier security at our marine ports. The RCMP national ports enforcement teams will only be established at the three major ports.

Why is the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness failing to provide the same level of security at all our marine ports?

Port SecurityOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Stoney Creek Ontario

Liberal

Tony Valeri LiberalMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, the Government of Canada's six-point plan to strengthen marine security in fact illustrates our continued commitment to better detect, assess and respond to marine threats. This is working toward a North American solution on security which will ensure that our Canadian ports remain competitive with our U.S. neighbours.

As I said last week, in the coming days I will have the opportunity to announce a contribution plan which would assist our ports in ensuring that they can meet the security they need to do in order to maintain our international standard and our competitiveness in North America.

Port SecurityOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Kevin Sorenson Canadian Alliance Crowfoot, AB

Mr. Speaker, the Canadian public wants to see more than six-point plans. They want to see action and we have not seen action from the government.

Without the same level of security at all ports, terrorists and organized crime will target the port of least resistance. Second class ports, those without the RCMP, will be their chosen port of entry. Not just some, but all marine ports must have RCMP presence.

Will the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness ensure that the RCMP national ports enforcement teams are established at all major marine ports?

Port SecurityOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Stoney Creek Ontario

Liberal

Tony Valeri LiberalMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, on July 1 there is an international standard that we are expected to meet. We have gone further and have created a North American standard in working very closely with the United States with respect to marine security.

We will meet that July 1 standard. I will continue to work with the stakeholders with respect to marine ports and facilities. We will ensure that we meet the international standard. We will announce a contribution plan in order to assist port authorities and facilities in meeting that international standard.

Public ServiceOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Christiane Gagnon Bloc Québec, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Supreme Court has recognized public servants' right to engage in legitimate political activities, and Canadian Heritage has been unable to demonstrate convincingly that Ms. Gendron's political activities brought her into any conflict with her departmental duties.

Does the minister's silence not indicate complicity with the arbitrary decision reached by her departmental management?

Public ServiceOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Louis-Hébert Québec

Liberal

Hélène Scherrer LiberalMinister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, I will say again what I said all last week. This is a labour relations matter. I have given no directive and I have not interfered in any way. The matter has been handled in compliance with the rules applicable to the public service. I believe that what needs to be looked at now might well be who is trying to use this matter for political gain.

Public ServiceOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Christiane Gagnon Bloc Québec, QC

Mr. Speaker, the government has already intervened successfully in order to get a decision by the Museum of Civilization changed in connection with an Arab art exhibit. Where there is a will, there is a way.

Is the minister's refusal to get involved this time not an indication that she supports the arbitrary decision by her departmental staff with respect to a sovereignist, which is in violation of Charter rights?

Public ServiceOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Louis-Hébert Québec

Liberal

Hélène Scherrer LiberalMinister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, on the contrary. In ensuring that this is a matter of labour relations, I believe that, at this time, we are complying with the standards put forward by the public service. This is in no way a political matter. It is a labour relations matter and, therefore, great care must be taken to comply with the standards put forward by the public service.

Fisheries and OceansOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Loyola Hearn Progressive Conservative St. John's West, NL

Mr. Speaker, the Fisheries Resource Conservation Council has made recommendations to the minister about the state of the groundfish stocks in the Gulf of St. Lawrence for 2004-05. Based on this advice, does the minister intend to approve a fishery in both the northern gulf and the southern gulf for the coming fishing season?

Fisheries and OceansOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Halifax West Nova Scotia

Liberal

Geoff Regan LiberalMinister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, the FRCC is an arm's length, independent conservation council, as my friend knows.

I received the report last week and would like to thank the council for its good work. I will review the recommendations and make my decision in the near future.

Fisheries and OceansOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Loyola Hearn Progressive Conservative St. John's West, NL

Mr. Speaker, last year the FRCC recommended a small fishery in both areas. The former minister refused to open the north gulf but he opened the southern gulf, even opening 4Vn to dragging. So much for conservation.

Will the minister guarantee he will make his decision based on the advice of the FRCC and other scientific sources to help fishermen, and not political opportunism to help his friends as we have seen done before, especially as we approach an election?

Fisheries and OceansOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Halifax West Nova Scotia

Liberal

Geoff Regan LiberalMinister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, I thank my hon. colleague for the question which I know is of great interest to people in Newfoundland and Labrador and elsewhere in Atlantic Canada.

As I indicated earlier, I appreciate the work of the FRCC. I am considering its recommendations and I will be making a decision and announcing it very shortly.

Air CanadaOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Christian Jobin Liberal Lévis-Et-Chutes-De-La-Chaudière, QC

Mr. Speaker, the minister responsible for official languages announced to us in this House last week that a restructured Air Canada would have to continue to comply with the Official Languages Act. That is, in itself, good news.

What I would like to know from the Minister of Transport, however, is whether WestJet and Jetsgo, two other Canadian companies that have started to provide services in Quebec, are subject to this same legislation. Does he intend to apply the same intensity as he did to Air Canada to ensuring their compliance with the Official Languages Act?