Mr. Speaker, we are talking about the potential harmonization, or not, of taxes and the transparency of how the government collects revenues and then dispenses them back to the provinces for needed programs. I think there is a growing lack of trust with the government's ability to do that very thing. In the region that I represent, a clear and decisive promise was made by the government to transfer $100 million to the province in order to counter the devastating effects of the pine beetle on the economies of northern British Columbia and the central interior. In the first year, very little of that money flowed out, something like $17 million in total. In the second year, it got even more grey; and now, we cannot find it in the budget that he refers to.
In the interest of having some sort of sense of transparency when debating issues of harmonization of tax or in any program that the government stands up in this House and congratulates itself for, it must answer the question, does the money actually flow? Does the money actually appear in the budget document? The $100 million a year that was committed over 10 years to the communities I represent seems to have evaporated, as Conservative promises so often do when they leave this place and attempt to hit the ground.
I wonder if the parliamentary secretary could clarify today, in very simple terms, is there $100 million for the pine beetle initiative in his 2009 budget, yes or no?