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House of Commons Hansard #73 of the 38th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was development.

Topics

2 p.m.

The Speaker

As is our practice on Wednesday we will now sing O Canada, and we will be led by the hon. member for Timmins—James Bay.

Cornerstone AwardStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Beth Phinney Liberal Hamilton Mountain, ON

Mr. Speaker, Hamilton Health Sciences and the Hamilton Health Sciences Foundation has recognized three individuals as the 2005 Cornerstone Award recipients. These winners display tremendous leadership and commitment in the field of health care.

An orthopedic surgeon and a leader in his field, Dr. de Beer is dedicated to the research and learning of joint replacement and is also an assistant professor at McMaster University. One of his initiatives, the event “A Day in Arthroplasty”, encourages patients to learn more about their upcoming surgical procedures.

Social worker Diana Tikasz is the coordinator of the Hamilton Health Sciences Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Care Centre. She works tirelessly to raise awareness of sexual assault and provides necessary and crucial support to those who have been victimized.

Bruce Wilson, a volunteer at Hamilton Health Sciences, has Lou Gehrig's disease. He is an activist and a counsellor for the physically challenged. Bruce is determined to find a cure for his disease and is involved with several community fundraisers.

I congratulate these 2005 Cornerstone Award winners.

Conservative Party of CanadaStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Ken Epp Conservative Edmonton—Sherwood Park, AB

Mr. Speaker, six minutes ago it was exactly 100,000 hours since I was first elected as a member of Parliament. What are my thoughts after 4,167 days?

It has been an extraordinary privilege to serve the people of Elk Island, and now Edmonton—Sherwood Park. It has been exciting to progress from the Reform Party, to the Canadian Alliance and now to the new exciting Conservative Party of Canada.

While this corrupt, tired Liberal government is missing the mark with respect to leadership of this wonderful country, I and my party are ready to govern with vision and insight. We are ready to offer Canadians a responsible, trustworthy government, an end to mismanagement, a new respect-based relationship with our American neighbours, a justice system that does a better job of protecting law-abiding citizens, effective democracy and much more. I can hardly wait until the electorate gives us the green light at the next election.

I anticipate with great excitement what the next six million minutes will bring.

2005 Special OlympicsStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Scott Simms Liberal Bonavista—Exploits, NL

Mr. Speaker, as the member for Bonavista—Gander—Grand Falls—Windsor, I rise today in the House to pay tribute to a young person in my riding, a young person of whom we are extremely proud. She is Sarah Brown of Gander, Newfoundland and Labrador. She participated in the 2005 Special Olympics in Nagano, Japan, February 25 to March 5.

Sarah returned home with a gold medal in the 4x400 metre relay race in snowshoeing and placed fourth in the 400 metre and 800 metre snowshoe race. She was the youngest competitor on the Canadian team, at age 14.

On behalf of all my constituents, we are very proud of Sarah and her accomplishments.

Omer BrazeauStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Louise Thibault Bloc Rimouski—Témiscouata, QC

Mr. Speaker, on Sunday, March 20, the people of eastern Quebec were deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Omer Brazeau.

Mr. Brazeau's unmatched generosity, tireless work, perseverance and tenacity led to the creation of Rimouski's cancer treatment centre and regional hostel unit.

Mr. Brazeau, who himself fought a stalwart battle against cancer, but eventually lost it, never stopped working to improve the quality of life of his fellow citizens.

In 1985, Mr. Brazeau became the president of eastern Quebec's cancer association. He left his position in 2001 and, with André Casgrain, founded the eastern Quebec palliative care association.

The social involvement of this great man was eloquently recognized. Indeed, Mr. Brazeau was recently honoured with these prestigious honours, among others: the Quebec National Assembly Medal; the Order of Canada; the Queen's Jubilee Medal and the Paul-Harris Medal, which is the highest distinction awarded by Rotary clubs.

On my behalf and on behalf of my constituents and my Bloc Québécois colleagues, I extend our most sincere condolences to Omer Brazeau's family and friends.

Anglers and HuntersStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Steckle Liberal Huron—Bruce, ON

Mr. Speaker, recently I sent a document to all parliamentarians, describing the economic benefits provided to the country by anglers. To put those benefits in perspective, I offer this.

In 1999 anglers and hunters spent $1.3 billion on overnight trips. That is three times the amount of money generated by all performing arts in Canada. Between 1984 and 1999, anglers directly contributed more than $335 million to wildlife habitat conservation efforts. Anglers and hunters support more Canadian jobs than the Bank of Nova Scotia, our third largest publicly traded company. Each year, anglers spend more than $6.7 billion on their sport. That is double the GDP of P.E.I., more than all the restaurant and tavern receipts in Quebec and more than the total retail value of all new vehicles sold in Alberta.

Anglers represent nearly 20% of our population and are some of the most ardent conservationists we have. I would like to thank them for their efforts to make certain that our children enjoy the outdoors as much as we have.

AgricultureStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Garry Breitkreuz Conservative Yorkton—Melville, SK

Mr. Speaker, Liberals touted the 2005 federal budget as one for all Canadians. After reading the fine print, we see agriculture got a kick in the teeth from the Saskatchewan finance minister.

The farm improvement loans program was quietly scrapped by the Liberals. Program loans had a special interest rate and special terms and provided farmers with a real option to regular loans. Lenders would set up similar loans using the program's low rates and terms.

With border closures and poor growing conditions, cutting this program hurt small farms and youth wishing to start farming. Farmers continue to wait for the 2003 and 2004 payments under the CAIS program. It is still not working, despite the announcements. Slaughtering plants are not being set up in a timely fashion.

Why do the Liberals continue to fiddle while Rome burns? That is called dithering.

Aboriginal Peoples Television NetworkStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Nancy Karetak-Lindell Liberal Nunavut, NU

Mr. Speaker, recently the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network received the Canadian Women in Communications' Employer of the Year Award for 2004. The award was received on behalf of APTN by its president, Madeleine Adams. This award honours APTN's commitment to advancing equality rights for women in its inclusive hiring practices.

Since September 1, 1999, APTN has been the only national television network to provide an inclusive voice for Inuit, first nations and Métis, as well as solidifying their position as founding nations of Canada.

APTN has an impressive inclusive track record in promoting employment for women. Women make up 57% of APTN's management positions and 33% of senior management positions.

APTN is doing great work in advancing inclusive employment opportunities for women, as well as providing an integral voice for the aboriginal community.

AgricultureStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Denise Poirier-Rivard Bloc Châteauguay—Saint-Constant, QC

Mr. Speaker, each year, the use of farm tractors results in an average of 11 deaths in Quebec. The UPA, Quebec's farmers' union, the CSST, Quebec's occupational health and safety commission, and the occupational health network want to reduce the number of such tragedies. From March 9 to March 16, the UPA held a major awareness campaign among its members, as part of the prevention in agriculture week.

For the past several years, the UPA has been involved in numerous prevention awareness initiatives. This year, the union has offered training sessions on the safe use of tractors to producers, members of their family and employees. The UPA has also launched a contest on prevention initiatives on the farm, to reward the creativity of farm producers in the area of occupational health and safety.

As a farmer and Bloc Québécois member, I wish to thank the UPA for promoting safe behaviour in the workplace. This is a fine illustration of respect for ourselves, those close to us and the rural community as a whole.

PeterboroughStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Peter Adams Liberal Peterborough, ON

Mr. Speaker, this is the 100th anniversary of the City of Peterborough. Ours is a community that has evolved from a lumber town to a focus for heavy industry to its present day status as a major regional centre.

We serve our region through the Peterborough Regional Health Centre, two regional school boards, Sir Sandford Fleming College and Trent University. We are a centre for agriculture and tourism services, the ministry of natural resources and other provincial and federal agencies. We are also the site of major low and high tech industries.

Peterborough, the home of GE Canada, was a pioneer in electricity. It was known as the “electric city”. It is still a pioneer in research and industry, for example the DNA Cluster which involves local educational and research representatives, the government and private sector organizations.

We are the home to the Peterborough Petes and we are the current Mann Cup champions.

I wish a happy anniversary to Peterborough.

Peter SchiemannStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Rona Ambrose Conservative Edmonton—Spruce Grove, AB

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to pay tribute to the people of Stony Plain, Alberta for their compassion, community spirit, love of family and friends and faith.

I had the great privilege of being in Stony Plain to attend the funeral service for fallen RCMP constable Peter Schiemann, our hero and friend. I want to share with everyone what I saw.

I saw young men and women in their red serge gather in a small town that opened its homes and hearts to mourn with the RCMP and the Schiemann family.

I know hundreds of members of the congregation of St. Matthew's Lutheran Church gave up their favourite pews to make room in the church for Peter's RCMP graduating class so they could be close to him and pay their respects.

I heard a brother and a sister, Michael and Julia, talk about their brother Peter, sharing with us their memories and assuring us of the love and faith that Peter had in God and in his fellow officers.

I saw a father and a mother beam with pride when talking about their son, inviting all of us to join them in their home any time for a coffee and stories about their hero and son, constable Peter Schiemann.

I feel very lucky and honoured to have been part of the ceremony.

John DowdsStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Roy Cullen Liberal Etobicoke North, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to pay respect to a dear friend, the late John Dowds, who died on March 6, 2005. My condolences and sympathies go to his wife, Audrey, to his children, John, Kathryn, Greg and Carolyn, and to their close friend, Tena. All of Etobicoke North feels this loss.

During the second world war, John Dowds served proudly as a member of the Canadian Forces. He was very active in the community as a member of the Kinsmen Club and the St. Benedict Hockey League.

John Dowds was very involved in politics, especially at the federal level, for many years. He was an original member of the Etobicoke North Federal Liberal Association.

John Dowds was a dedicated individual, a loyal family man, a true friend to all and a great Canadian who bettered the lives of those around him. He will be truly missed.

AgricultureStatements By Members

March 23rd, 2005 / 2:15 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus NDP Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, two weeks ago I met with farm women from India who came to Canada to denounce our government's attempt to overthrow the international moratorium on terminator seed technology. These women are the backbone of third world agriculture. They feed and sustain entire communities based on their ability to save and reuse seeds. They came here with a simple message: that their way of life is under threat thanks to our government's support for the terminator gene.

Terminator is not about improving agriculture. It is a gamble with the very essence of life itself. What kind of nation sets out to kill the productive capacity of its own crops?

The government has been a veritable terminator when it comes to watching the domestic destruction of our rural farm economy. Is it going after the very seeds in the ground and turning our farmers into sharecroppers from Monsanto?

I am calling upon the agriculture minister to stand and come clean with Canadians, to get off the island of Dr. Moreau and to say no to terminator technology.

Gibsons WaterStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

John Reynolds Conservative West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast, BC

Mr. Speaker, good news is coming from the beautiful coast of British Columbia, and especially good news for people who like their water pure, fresh and ever so clean tasting.

Gibsons' water was recently recognized at the Berkeley Springs international water tasting contest in West Virginia. Sixty other municipalities entered samples of drinking water but it was Gibsons' water that won the coveted recognition as the best tasting tap water in the world.

Some countries export their spring water and charge more than we pay for gasoline. The good people of Gibsons and those lucky enough to visit can have all of the best water in the world they can drink and it is free.

We are a little wary about bragging too much about ours being the best tasting tap water in the world because the Liberals might want to tax it.

We have another reason to boast. It was at Gibsons where they filmed the Beachcombers and it is at Gibsons where with the mere turn of a tap people can savour the best tasting tap water in the world.

Why go to France for bottled water when everyone can drive to Gibsons and turn on the tap?

Member for Verchères—Les PatriotesStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Bloc

Benoît Sauvageau Bloc Repentigny, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is with great pleasure that I pay tribute today to my colleague and friend from the riding of Verchères—Les Patriotes, who received the title of Chevalier de l'Ordre de la Pléiade on March 22.

This honour is bestowed in recognition of the tireless efforts of my colleague over the past several years to promote the French language throughout the world, but especially of his continuing efforts to have the Acadian tragedy recognized and to obtain an official apology.

Through his dedication he has also reminded us that 2 million Quebeckers are of Acadian descent and that it is vitally important to strengthen the ties between the Quebec nation and the Acadian nation.

Like the star on the Acadian flag, I hope you will continue to illuminate the French fact in Quebec, Acadia and elsewhere in the world for years to come. Congratulations, chevalier and thank you.

InfrastructureStatements By Members

2:20 p.m.

Conservative

Helena Guergis Conservative Simcoe—Grey, ON

Mr. Speaker, this afternoon members of our caucus are meeting with 40 mayors and deputy mayors from around the province of Ontario.

They have come to share with our party horror stories about crumbling roads, sidewalks and sewers that are in such disrepair that lives and the economy are at risk. Their needs are urgent but the government has ignored them, like it has ignored the pleas of Canadians across the country.

For the past 12 years the government has overtaxed Canadians and then hoarded the surplus. I am sure these Johnny-come-latelies will apply a little touch up paint here and there but where is the plan? Where has the urgency been from the government for the past 12 years?

More mayors could have been here this week if the Liberal backroom boys had not applied the pressure. Their actions are disgraceful.

Having failed miserably the people they claim to represent, they now act to keep them under their boot. Why must our tax dollars be given to their friends and special interests first?

The government is starting to act like cornered rats. Its actions are disgraceful.

Conservative Party of CanadaStatements By Members

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Susan Kadis Liberal Thornhill, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Conservative convention was held over the weekend and what we witnessed was a party debating issues that the Liberal Party decided upon decades ago.

The leader of the official opposition can try to portray his party as forward-looking and moderate but its policies show otherwise.

Only the Conservative Party would try to turn back the clock on minority rights by using the notwithstanding clause to override rights and call this moderate and forward-looking.

Only the Conservative Party would agree to introduce a two tier health care system and call it moderate and forward looking.

Only the Conservative Party would congratulate itself for finally acknowledging official bilingualism, a debate the rest of the us decided years ago, and call it forward-looking.

Only the Conservative Party would think it is the party of tomorrow, while voting for a watered down resolution that turns back the clock on a woman's right to choose.

Clearly, that is a party of yesterday, not a party of tomorrow, and watching the convention made me proud to be a Liberal.

International TradeOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, we are the instigators of free trade, but today our Prime Minister ranks third in NAFTA.

At the North American summit today, Canada's trade issues were not even on the agenda. Canada's trade minister was not even there. Since they are not mentioned at all in the official communiqué, could the government tell us what exactly it did today to advance and to solve Canada's problems on softwood lumber, on beef and on our other trade interests?

International TradeOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Willowdale Ontario

Liberal

Jim Peterson LiberalMinister of International Trade

Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to inform the hon. Leader of the Opposition and all members of the House that what we are doing in terms of softwood lumber is the team Canada approach is being pursued at this very instant in Toronto. Negotiations are being undertaken between Canada and the United States with a hope to bringing an end to the softwood lumber dispute.

International TradeOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, we have won every round, and the minister put forward an offer that gives away the store before we even get to the table.

Yesterday the Prime Minister refused to answer my questions on softwood lumber and on softwood lumber duties. I am going to ask the government again. Did the Prime Minister tell the President today that we will stand fast on the illegality of the Byrd amendment and insist that Canadian softwood producers get their money back?

International TradeOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Willowdale Ontario

Liberal

Jim Peterson LiberalMinister of International Trade

Mr. Speaker, I think the hon. Leader of the Opposition owes it to the House to state, when he says that we gave away the sink, that we gave away the store, what did we give away?

Does he object to our asking for 100% return of all the deposits on duties? Does he resent the idea that we would like to replace the duties as a temporary measure with a border tax going to Canada and not to the Americans? Is this what he says is selling out the store? I do not think he understands what we are doing at all.

Border SecurityOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, just to clarify it for the minister, the government is giving away the store and letting it all go down the sink.

Since September 11, the United States has added 1,000 border patrol officers to protect their borders. However, the Liberals are closing nine RCMP detachments that help protect the border between Quebec and the United States.

How can the government be improving our security when thousands of vehicles are crossing the Quebec border undetected?

Border SecurityOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Etobicoke North Ontario

Liberal

Roy Cullen LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness

Mr. Speaker, if we put this in context, first of all the government is totally committed to safe borders and smart borders. In fact in Texas today the governments of Mexico, the United States and Canada announced the establishment of the security and prosperity partnership of North America.

Last year 71 million people were processed by the Canada Border Services Agency at our ports of entry. Our government continues to invest in the Canada Border Services Agency. In fact in the last budget there is close to half a billion dollars that is going to the CBSA to increase our security capacity at our borders.

International TradeOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Conservative

Belinda Stronach Conservative Newmarket—Aurora, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister did not bring his trade minister to Texas. Either he has no confidence in his cabinet colleague, or he has no interest in really talking trade.

Canada has lost roughly $10 billion to the United States between BSE and softwood alone. Canadian business loses almost another $10 billion a year in border delays. That is a lot of money that has gone down the drain.

Why did the Prime Minister not insist on parallel trade talks between ministers?

International TradeOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Willowdale Ontario

Liberal

Jim Peterson LiberalMinister of International Trade

Mr. Speaker, I want to know if the hon. member endorses what her leader says, that our offer on the table is selling out the store. It is an offer which would return 100% of the deposits to us and replace the duties with a border tax that is paid to Canada.

We are proceeding on the softwood lumber file. The negotiations are ongoing in Toronto. We are supported in these by the industry. We are supported by the 10 provinces. We are supported by the three territories.

This is the way we will act, in concert, to achieve the best result for all Canadians.