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House of Commons Hansard #18 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was provinces.

Topics

Public SafetyOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Bloc

Thierry St-Cyr Bloc Jeanne-Le Ber, QC

Mr. Speaker, to address the problem of cigarette smuggling, we proposed seizing the vehicles of smugglers who buy cigarettes illegally, so as to deal with supply as well as demand.

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety stated in this House that such seizures would be illegal. Yet the Excise Act, 2001, provides for such seizures.

Instead of spreading misinformation, will the parliamentary secretary wake up and see to it that the RCMP finally takes action?

Public SafetyOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, I never said it was illegal to seize vehicles whose owners break the law. This does not go against the bill. That is not true. There is a bill designed to allow the police to seize the owners' effects.

In addition, last year, there was an increase in interventions by the RCMP and other police forces to deal with the illegal tobacco situation. This is a huge problem, and there are—

Public SafetyOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. member for Jeanne-Le Ber.

Public SafetyOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Bloc

Thierry St-Cyr Bloc Jeanne-Le Ber, QC

Mr. Speaker, the minister may not have said it, but his parliamentary secretary did. They should get their act together.

Earlier this week, when he was invited to form an interdepartmental committee to deal with tobacco smuggling, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety said that the Canada Border Services Agency had received additional resources and funds and that an integrated team was enforcing the law at the border—in short, that everything was fine. However, clearly everything is not fine, because this approach is not working. Smuggling continues unabated. Experience has shown that an interdepartmental committee can make a difference.

Why is the parliamentary secretary stubbornly rejecting this solution?

Public SafetyOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, first, I want to say that it is not acceptable for a member to say that the minister said something and, in his second question, to say that the minister did not say it. It is important to state the facts, the truth.

The truth is that we have given the police more funding and more resources to deal with illegal tobacco. In 2005, the value of illegal tobacco was $250,000, and we have seen—

Public SafetyOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. member for Davenport.

JusticeOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Liberal

Mario Silva Liberal Davenport, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Conservative government's reversal on the death penalty came less than a week after the American Bar Association called for a moratorium on executions in the United States. Amnesty International calls the government's reversal on the death penalty “deeply troubling” and “misguided”.

Years ago, Progressive Conservative prime minister, John Diefenbaker, understood that the death penalty was a thing of the brutal past. Sadly, the Conservative government has withdrawn Canadian sponsorship of a UN resolution to end the death penalty.

When will the government take a stand for human rights at home and abroad? When will it take action to end the death penalty around the world?

JusticeOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, the death penalty is no longer part of Canadian law and this government has absolutely no intention of changing that. I think our conduct on the international scene has also been consistent with that.

HomelessnessOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Conservative

Rob Merrifield Conservative Yellowhead, AB

Mr. Speaker, as winter approaches, the issue of homelessness takes on a whole new urgency, especially in the Arctic. I know our government takes this matter very seriously, unlike the last government that talked a big game but never followed through during 13 years in power.

Could the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources and Social Development tell the House what our government is going to do to help the homeless, especially in the north?

HomelessnessOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Blackstrap Saskatchewan

Conservative

Lynne Yelich ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources and Social Development

Mr. Speaker, our government takes this issue very seriously. We promised in the throne speech that we would actively work with first nations and the Inuit to increase the supply of affordable housing in the north.

This is why we have increased the amount of money in affordable housing more than any government in Canadian history: $1.4 billion for affordable housing, northern housing and housing for aboriginal people living off reserve. Even the Liberal member for Yukon has praised this government for our commitment to affordable housing in the north.

Unlike the previous government, this government is doing more than talking.

InfrastructureOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

NDP

David Christopherson NDP Hamilton Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, Ontario mayors are meeting in Oshawa today to continue their fight for fair infrastructure funding, but this is a made in Ottawa crisis.

The government is trying to fool Canadians into believing it has lowered taxes but it really has just shifted them to the property tax bill. Mississauga mayor, Hazel McCallion, has already warned that she will have no choice but to levy an infrastructure tax because the Conservative government will not help.

Canadians are not fooled. Why will the government not stop playing political games and put that money where it will do the most good for the most people?

InfrastructureOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Pontiac Québec

Conservative

Lawrence Cannon ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I think it is time to explain to our friends from the NDP that we are doing a lot.

We have committed $33 billion, unprecedented, of which $17 billion will be going to local communities and to municipalities across the country. Indeed, we are sending money to the municipalities through the gas tax transfer and through 100% rebate on the GST. That is--

InfrastructureOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. member for Hamilton Centre.

InfrastructureOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

NDP

David Christopherson NDP Hamilton Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, the minister should pick up the phone, call Mayor McCallion and give her that speech.

Here are the real facts. Only half of that infrastructure money actually goes to municipalities. The rest of it goes to provincial and federal projects. While cities are facing a $60 billion infrastructure deficit, they get less than $2.5 billion a year on average.

While the Conservatives are playing shell games, municipalities are having to be the grown-ups and find a way to pay for the Conservatives' neglect of cities.

Why can the government not set the right priorities that would actually benefit ordinary Canadians? Infrastructure must be funded. Why can it not just get it done?

InfrastructureOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Pontiac Québec

Conservative

Lawrence Cannon ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, as a matter of fact, the last time I spoke with the mayor of Mississauga I was pleased to be with her and my colleague, the Minister of Finance, when we announced the FLOW project in the greater Toronto area, with $83 million for the BRT, the bus rapid transit system in Mississauga. That is what we are doing.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Liberal

Massimo Pacetti Liberal Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel, QC

Mr. Speaker, in 2005, the Liberal government reached an agreement with the Italian community—

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Liberal

Borys Wrzesnewskyj Liberal Etobicoke Centre, ON

—and the Ukrainian community.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Liberal

Massimo Pacetti Liberal Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel, QC

—and signed an agreement in principle worth $12.5 million. This funding was to be used to make amends for the injustices suffered by Italian community members who were imprisoned and declared enemy aliens during the second world war. To the surprise and horror of the community, the Conservative government has decided not to honour its commitments.

What makes this government think it can betray communities, the Italian community in particular, that have given so much to Canada, and tarnish the memory of the victims who suffered injustices in the past?

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

Noon

New Brunswick Southwest New Brunswick

Conservative

Greg Thompson ConservativeMinister of Veterans Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I can only guess that he is referring to the allied veterans. This is a group that the previous government deserted in 1995 when it took funding away. However, we are committed to our veterans community and members need only to look at our record.

The Liberals left a number of things uncompleted on their watch. They failed to implement the Veterans Charter. They failed to deal with agent orange. This week we had to fix up a problem that goes back to 1968.

We are getting the job done for veterans.

Vehicle SafetyOral Questions

November 16th, 2007 / noon

Conservative

Dick Harris Conservative Cariboo—Prince George, BC

Mr. Speaker, ESC, or electronic stability control, saves lives and prevents injuries. It is a fact that if all vehicles in Canada were equipped with ESC, each year over 1,400 serious accidents and serious injuries would be prevented, and over 200 lives would be saved.

Would the Minister of Transport tell this House how this Conservative government is taking the lead to ensure greatly enhanced vehicle safety for Canadians?

Vehicle SafetyOral Questions

Noon

Pontiac Québec

Conservative

Lawrence Cannon ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I want to thank my colleague for his work on this file over the last two years.

Transport Canada has been evaluating the performance of electronic stability control since 2004 by testing various vehicles on different surface conditions. The department is continuing research and promoting electronic stability control, but more importantly, it is developing regulations for prepublication in 2008.

Canada Marine ActRoutine Proceedings

Noon

Pontiac Québec

Conservative

Lawrence Cannon ConservativeMinister of Transport

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-23, An Act to amend the Canada Marine Act, the Canada Transportation Act, the Pilotage Act and other Acts in consequence.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

Criminal CodeRoutine Proceedings

Noon

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-24, An Act to amend the Criminal Code and the Firearms Act (non-registration of firearms that are neither prohibited nor restricted).

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

Income Tax ActRoutine Proceedings

Noon

NDP

Brian Masse NDP Windsor West, ON

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-476, An Act to amend the Income Tax Act (tax credit for gifts).

Mr. Speaker, it is a privilege to introduce this bill. I would like to thank the member for Winnipeg Centre who has been helping me with the bill.

The bill would amend the Income Tax Act and provide for greater donations and return for those individuals who give to the not for profit sector, charities, organization and groups.

In particular, the proposed bill mirrors the political system, where for the first $1,275 that a person gives, charities will be able to issue a greater tax back, so middle and lower income earners will get a better return. It treats the system fairly.

This is a significant change that would help the industry. The charitable industry sector is around 8% of the Canadian economy and employs 2 million people in great causes, everything from seniors and children to universities and colleges.

I would request unanimous consent for the following motion: That, notwithstanding the Standing Orders or usual practices of the House, that this bill, an act to amend the Income Tax Act, be deemed carried at second reading, referred to the committee of the whole, be deemed to have been adopted at committee of the whole and reported without amendment, be deemed to have been concurred in at report stage, without amendment, and be deemed carried at third reading and passed.

Income Tax ActRoutine Proceedings

Noon

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Maybe we should complete the first reading of the bill and then I will see if there is consent to advance it through all stages, as suggested.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)