Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the interest of the member for Yukon in this issue and his involvement in the outdoor caucus.
I think the hon. member is right, and the member for Egmont said this as well, that there is a funding shortfall for small craft harbours. We all acknowledge that.
Members on the other side are pushing us to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on small craft harbours and we understand that need. However, the Liberal Party governed with a majority and after some years they started having surpluses. I think 1997-98 was the first year with a surplus. In that year the small craft harbours were funded at $56.9 million. Remember that the amount is about $100 million today. The following year it was $56.3 million. The year after that it was $62.8 million. It started to go up a little. With a number of years of surplus with all of the taxation powers the Liberals had, the funding never got above $90 million.
I am curious as to why the previous government did not accept this challenge if it was so obvious that there was an infrastructure deficit. Why did the Liberals not do something when they had the opportunity to do so?