This week, I changed much of the tech behind this site. If you see anything that looks like a bug, please let me know!

House of Commons Hansard #125 of the 38th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was energy.

Topics

Canadian Broadcasting CorporationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

London North Centre Ontario

Liberal

Joe Fontana LiberalMinister of Labour and Housing

Mr. Speaker, I am happy to report to the House that I have met with the decision-makers for both CBC and the union. In fact, they are in my office this very moment trying to put together an agreement which hopefully will make the CBC stronger and give Canadians what they want. We are working to ensure that labour and management can come up with a solution to bring these two parties together.

Canadian Broadcasting CorporationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus NDP Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, that pretty much sums it up. The heritage minister cannot even stand up and talk about policies. Someone else has to do it.

Across Canada, Radio-Canada is the only service to the francophone community. By keeping quiet, the Minister of Canadian Heritage is holding the French-speaking people of Saskatchewan, Acadia and Northern Ontario hostage. This is unacceptable.

When is the minister going to do something?

Canadian Broadcasting CorporationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Jeanne-Le Ber Québec

Liberal

Liza Frulla LiberalMinister of Canadian Heritage and Minister responsible for Status of Women

Mr. Speaker, there is a dispute between management and the union. First, they are now in the process of trying to reach a joint agreement, and second, I would remind the hon. member that we have maintained the funding for CBC—Radio-Canada, and have added $60 million. I would ask them where they were when Bill C-48 was passed. Was there money in it for culture? No. For CBC—Radio-Canada? No. So we are doing our duty and do not need any lectures.

Income TrustsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Monte Solberg Conservative Medicine Hat, AB

Mr. Speaker, by cancelling advance tax rulings on income trusts the finance minister is endangering the financial security of millions of Canadians, especially seniors. With the minister's announcement, Canadian businesses lost billions of dollars in market capital in one day and thousands of dollars were shaved off personal nest eggs of Canadians.

Why is the minister attacking all Canadians and especially seniors with his reckless behaviour on income trusts?

Income TrustsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the conduct is anything but reckless. The government has indicated that we wish to have a consultation to develop policy options with respect to these matters. It is very important that the consultation be conducted in a rational manner. Therefore, we have taken the steps that we have. We intend to complete the consultation as quickly as possible and respond with the right policy response.

Income TrustsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Monte Solberg Conservative Medicine Hat, AB

Mr. Speaker, not only is the finance minister attacking investors with his erratic behaviour on trusts, but now he is re-breaking his promise to reduce the tax load on Canada's largest employers.

Today the finance minister confirmed that he is being called to heel by the leader of the NDP. He has announced he is re-breaking his commitment to cut taxes for large employers. How can he do that when he claims that raising productivity is one of his many number one priorities?

Income TrustsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, we really cannot trust members of the opposition. Last spring they were supporting the budget until about April 21. There was a sudden blip in the polls. It did not amount to much and it did not last very long, but it set off this huge surge of Conservative electoral hormones. All the blood rushed from their heads. The Conservatives lost their judgment and they tried to kill the very budget that they now pretend to defend.

Softwood LumberOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

John Duncan Conservative Vancouver Island North, BC

Mr. Speaker, the finance minister must be feeling increasingly lonely in Saskatchewan. It is 46 days and counting since the Prime Minister promised the Premier of B.C. that he would call President Bush to discuss the softwood lumber dispute.

The Prime Minister has dithered and delayed, despite the long anticipated win for Canada. The Prime Minister had no problems discussing softwood with the Chinese Premier, but is yet to raise the issue with the U.S. President.

Why did the Prime Minister blow the opportunity to call immediately after the ruling? Why has he wasted the last six weeks?

Softwood LumberOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Willowdale Ontario

Liberal

Jim Peterson LiberalMinister of International Trade

Mr. Speaker, let me assure members that we are taking all steps possible to ensure that the NAFTA is respected. This includes litigation, retaliation and enhanced advocacy. The NAFTA must be respected.

Softwood LumberOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

John Duncan Conservative Vancouver Island North, BC

Mr. Speaker, the minister is refusing to engage in what has really happened here, which is a promise made and a promise broken. We have an industry completely deflated by the lack of government action after over $300 million in legal costs incurred by the Canadian side.

The Prime Minister is refusing to appoint a new minister of natural resources. By appointing a temporary minister, who is splitting his duties, the Prime Minister is showing his disregard for the critical natural resources sector of the economy.

Why is the Prime Minister putting politics before—

Softwood LumberOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

The Speaker

Order, please. Everyone likes to hear the government House leader, but we will not be able to with all this noise. We have to be able to hear the hon. minister.

Softwood LumberOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Hamilton East—Stoney Creek Ontario

Liberal

Tony Valeri LiberalLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, the premise of the hon. member's question is completely wrong.

The government has been fighting for softwood right from the inception. It will continue to do so through the acting minister of natural resources, through the international trade minister, through the Prime Minister, and through this cabinet. We are fighting through every member of this caucus for softwood, while the opposition continues to play politics.

We look forward to finding a solution to this problem that includes the United States respecting the NAFTA agreement.

Canadian Broadcasting CorporationOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Carole Lavallée Bloc Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, QC

Mr. Speaker, we are aware that the Minister of Labour met this morning with CBC representatives and staff, who are the victims of a lockout, and with the president of the corporation. This is more than just a labour dispute, because the CBC's desire to increase the number of temporary jobs is a direct threat to journalistic independence.

Did the minister take advantage of this morning's meeting with both parties to remind CBC management that creating precarious employment is unacceptable?

Canadian Broadcasting CorporationOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

London North Centre Ontario

Liberal

Joe Fontana LiberalMinister of Labour and Housing

Mr. Speaker, as I indicated before, both parties are willing to negotiate. They are in fact negotiating at this moment.

I will be meeting with both parties after question period to find out what success they have made to date. We are determined to ensure that they are at the table to make the necessary compromises with regard to the issues at hand and let the collective bargaining process work.

The government is there to assist them. They are willing to negotiate and willing to make the compromises necessary. We are hopeful about this state of events.

Canadian Broadcasting CorporationOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Maka Kotto Bloc Saint-Lambert, QC

Mr. Speaker, does the Minister of Canadian Heritage realize that the outrageous increase in precarious employment the CBC has in mind will, in the short term, threaten journalistic independence and the very principle of the public's fundamental right to objective and quality information?

Canadian Broadcasting CorporationOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

London North Centre Ontario

Liberal

Joe Fontana LiberalMinister of Labour and Housing

Mr. Speaker, I do not understand what they do not understand over there.

The parties are at the table. They are trying to negotiate through these particular issues. That is what we want. We want to bring both parties to the table. We have had them there for the past three weeks. I have them in my offices right now. They are working hard to resolve these issues, and hopefully that is what we all want to happen.

National DefenceOral Questions

September 26th, 2005 / 2:50 p.m.

Conservative

Gordon O'Connor Conservative Carleton—Lanark, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Liberal government has done nothing to implement its impossibly conceived campaign promise to boost the armed forces by 8,000 troops.

Just like its improbable five year budget increase, the government is planning for a troop increase that is scheduled to begin three years from now. The last time I checked, the Prime Minister promised an election within six months. This is just another election promise without action.

The armed forces are desperately overstretched and overworked. They need more than rhetoric. Why will the government not fulfill its promise to the forces?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Toronto Centre Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham LiberalMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, I wish the hon. member had spent the summer as I did, going around talking to the members of our armed forces, who are extremely grateful to the government for stepping forward and putting into place a defence policy they respect, a new chief who is inspiring them and money to get them in the budget. We are recruiting members and the morale is higher than it has ever been before.

I hate to disappoint the hon. member, but we are going in the right direction and he knows it, so I would not play politics with this one. This government is delivering for our armed forces in a way nobody has in this country for years.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Gordon O'Connor Conservative Carleton—Lanark, ON

Mr. Speaker, that is fiddle-faddle. DND is one of the most bureaucratic departments of government. It spends most of its time supporting endless administrative processes. That is why DND is having such difficulty meeting the Liberals' impulsively conceived recruiting goal. The training and recruiting system is simply constipated.

Other than issuing a costly report talking about what needs to be done, the Liberals have actually done nothing to achieve administrative efficiency. How can the government hope to meet its recruiting goal without slashing the red tape at DND?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Toronto Centre Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham LiberalMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member has not been in the House long enough to remember that another hon. member in this House said fuddle duddle, not fiddle-faddle, but as you may recall, that called for some interference from the Chair so I hesitate to go in that direction.

I do want to say that I will go back to where I came from in the first place. I urge the hon. member to talk to the troops. They believe we are on the right track. Of course we have problems. Do we need to speed it up? We will speed it up. Can we do better? We will do better. We are on the right track. I am proud to be the defence minister and I am proud to lead our troops as we go ahead.

InfrastructureOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Rodger Cuzner Liberal Cape Breton—Canso, NS

Mr. Speaker, on Friday past, along with my colleague from Sydney—Victoria, I was delighted to welcome the Prime Minister and the Minister of State for Infrastructure and Communities to Cape Breton for the signing of the Nova Scotia federal gas tax agreement. The excitement and expectation shared by provincial and municipal partners was obvious and much anticipation is now held by all Nova Scotians.

Could the minister of state please tell the House what benefits the gas tax agreement will bring to the people of Cape Breton and indeed all of Nova Scotia?

InfrastructureOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Don Valley West Ontario

Liberal

John Godfrey LiberalMinister of State (Infrastructure and Communities)

Mr. Speaker, the deal we signed last Friday will provide over $145 million in five years to Nova Scotia. Those municipalities will be able to use the money for clean water, for waste water, for waste management and for all of their infrastructure needs.

Let me quote the former president of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, the mayor of New Glasgow, who said to the Prime Minister as we signed the deal, “Thank you for your vision. Thank you for recognizing the needs of Canada's communities...”.

Automobile IndustryOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Colin Carrie Conservative Oshawa, ON

Mr. Speaker, the auto industry is the largest manufacturing industry in this country, employing hundreds of thousands of Canadians. Ford and Chrysler have already negotiated unprecedented job cuts and plant closings. A strike is possible at General Motors.

Last Christmas, the industry minister promised an auto strategy within two weeks. In the spring he told us that he was just putting on the finishing touches. Where is this elusive auto strategy?

Automobile IndustryOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Vancouver Kingsway B.C.

Liberal

David Emerson LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, we have been working in partnership with the industry. There is a document that the Canadian auto partnership group put out, called a visions document. I am prepared to go to the industry committee at any time it is convenient to the committee and give a full presentation on auto, aerospace and several other sectors as well.

Automobile IndustryOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Colin Carrie Conservative Oshawa, ON

Mr. Speaker, this is the largest manufacturing industry in the country and all it is getting is empty promises.

Canadian workers are now paying the price for Liberal inaction. When will the government wake up and realize that the price of inaction is the loss of thousands of auto jobs in this sector?