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House of Commons Hansard #55 of the 40th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was farm.

Topics

JusticeOral Questions

May 11th, 2009 / 2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Dona Cadman Conservative Surrey North, BC

Mr. Speaker, fortunately for British Columbians, there has been somewhat of a reprieve in the last few weeks with respect to the carnage caused by organized criminals.

This does not, however, mean that anyone of us should let down our guard. We must continue to devise strategies to try to keep one step ahead of those who terrorize our communities.

As this is National Police Week, it is important to remember that we give the police the tools they need to fight crime. Can the Minister of Justice tell us what this government's doing to ensure that we continue to fight organized crime?

JusticeOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I am proud of the fact that our government, in just the last couple of months, has introduced six pieces of justice legislation, four of which directly target organized crime.

If we have the attention of the opposition for the next couple of weeks, we should be able to get at least three of those passed before the session ends. I know how difficult that is. The Leader of the Opposition, for instance, was not able to use one word about fighting crime when he addressed the nation in Vancouver a week ago Saturday.

However, that is the difference between our two parties. I am proud to be part of a party that knows that we must fight crime 365 days of the year.

Fishing IndustryOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Peter Stoffer NDP Sackville—Eastern Shore, NS

Mr. Speaker, on the east coast of Canada, a perfect storm is developing around the lobster industry. From low catches, to very low prices, to high prices for fuel and so on, the fishermen are facing a very difficult time. In fact, many of them may be tying up their boats this season just because they cannot meet their costs.

One of the solutions for the industry is to allow the fishermen access to EI based on 2008 catches.

Will the government stand in the House today and commit to these fishermen and their families that they will be allowed access to EI so they can cover their cost--

Fishing IndustryOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. parliamentary secretary.

Fishing IndustryOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Pitt Meadows—Maple Ridge—Mission B.C.

Conservative

Randy Kamp ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, we are well aware of the challenges facing the lobster industry. We are in an economic downturn and we expect some challenges in all industries, including this one. We have already taken action to help by improving access to credit, as well as funding some marketing initiatives.

However, we expect that demand will be lower and prices will be lower so we expect the industry to do its part as well.

I continue to work with the provinces, industry, and the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development to work out solutions for this year as well.

Fishing IndustryOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Yvon Godin NDP Acadie—Bathurst, NB

Mr. Speaker, this weekend, the Minister for the Atlantic Gateway promised to help fishers who are facing a significant drop in the price of lobster.

The government recognizes that the price of lobster has to be at least $4 per pound for the fishery to be viable. With record-low prices of under $3 per pound, fishers will not be able to hang on for long. They need help right now. They are in crisis.

Will the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans compensate fishers right now and implement measures to ensure the long-term viability of the industry?

Fishing IndustryOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Pitt Meadows—Maple Ridge—Mission B.C.

Conservative

Randy Kamp ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, as I just said, we are aware of these challenges. When there is an economic downturn and demand and prices are lower, we expect there to be some very serious challenges. We are monitoring the situation. We are continuing to work with the provinces and industry.

The solution will have to be a partnership of industry and both levels of government. We are working toward that.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Claude Bachand Bloc Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, in a document obtained under the Access to Information Act, we discovered where the Department of National Defence plans to locate the Chinook and Griffon helicopters. The department plans to centralize these aircraft at Petawawa, which will lead to the closure of four squadrons, including the Saint-Hubert and Bagotville squadrons.

Can the Minister of National Defence assure us that this plan is not true and that squadrons will not be shut down in Quebec?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of National Defence and Minister for the Atlantic Gateway

Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague for that question.

My answer is yes, it is not true.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Robert Bouchard Bloc Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, QC

Mr. Speaker, in that same document, the Bagotville option is the least expensive. Yet the Minister of National Defence plans to move the Griffons and close 439 Squadron at the Bagotville military base. That decision could mean the loss of 50 jobs at that base.

If the Bagotville option is the least expensive, can the Minister of National Defence explain to the people of Saguenay—Lac-Saint-Jean why he is getting ready to reject that option in favour of Petawawa?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of National Defence and Minister for the Atlantic Gateway

I repeat, no decision has been made about the location of existing fleets or the aircraft to be purchased in the future.

InfrastructureOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Gerard Kennedy Liberal Parkdale—High Park, ON

Mr. Speaker, the government was entrusted with $12 billion in extra funds to quickly and effectively build new infrastructure and employ Canadians. One hundred days later, almost all of the funds are still tied up in the minister's office. The minister is playing political games with the public trust.

Will the minister stop playing games long enough to answer one simple question? How many jobs has he created with the infrastructure stimulus funds so far?

InfrastructureOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, we have moved aggressively, making—

InfrastructureOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

An hon. member

What will you do?

InfrastructureOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

Peter MacKay Conservative Central Nova, NS

You are nothing.

InfrastructureOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

An hon. member

You sit there and criticize and do nothing.

InfrastructureOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

John Baird Conservative Ottawa West—Nepean, ON

My goodness, Mr. Speaker. There is quite the banter going back and forth.

InfrastructureOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order. I am sure the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities will manage to quiet things down when he starts his answer. We will have a little order in the House, please, so we can all hear the minister in his response.

InfrastructureOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

John Baird Conservative Ottawa West—Nepean, ON

Mr. Speaker, we are working constructively with the provinces and municipalities. Let us look at what the president of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities said just last month:

The Government of Canada and all parliamentarians deserve recognition and thanks this week for their ongoing support for this important funding program and the working partnership they have forged with Canada's municipalities.

Step by step we are getting the job done. We eagerly look forward to the June parliamentary report, when we will outline all of the great action we are taking and will continue to take to help provide jobs and create hope and opportunity.

InfrastructureOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Gerard Kennedy Liberal Parkdale—High Park, ON

Mr. Speaker, in the paper today Jean Perrault had much less kind things to say about a government that has not produced one job in all the time that it has had.

The minister of bluster has a duty. That duty is to the 86,000 more unemployed construction workers over this time last year. He failed them miserably last year and he is failing them now.

Will the minister admit that it is time to change the program to agree with the municipalities and the Canadian Construction Association and use the gas tax transfer to get money out and create jobs right now?

InfrastructureOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, it is the Prime Minister and the Minister of Finance who doubled funding to municipalities in the gas tax. In addition to that, we gave them July's money this April, getting more money flowing to help provide jobs, hope and opportunity.

Step by step we are getting the job done. We are delivering for Canadian municipalities, but we are not going to simply give all the money to municipalities and push aside the provinces. He wants to push aside Premier Dalton McGuinty and we will not do that.

Credit Card RegulationsOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Glenn Thibeault NDP Sudbury, ON

Mr. Speaker, last Friday the Minister of Finance unveiled the Conservative plan to help credit card holders. Not surprisingly, the government's plan is nothing more than an information campaign. Larger fonts and leaflets do not go far enough to help hard-working Canadians through this recession. Consumers do not need another government leaflet to tell them what they already know from looking at their monthly statements.

When will the Minister of Finance stand up for Canadians instead of the big banks on Bay Street?

Credit Card RegulationsOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, in Canada's economic action plan this year we announced that there would be a regulatory power created for the Minister of Finance with respect to credit cards. The member who just asked the question voted against that provision. There will be regulations coming forward and I hope that he will read them before he decides that he does not like them.

Credit Card RegulationsOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Glenn Thibeault NDP Sudbury, ON

Mr. Speaker, what credit card holders need now is not an information campaign. What they need is relief.

The New Democrats have a plan to deliver real results. Our policy to adopt a credit card accountability act was passed by Parliament. This week representatives from Canadian businesses will be in Ottawa to echo our message on credit cards.

Will the Minister of Finance continue to introduce policies that do not go far enough, or will the government finally listen to the majority of Canadians and retailers, respect Parliament and take real action by adopting the New Democrats' plan?

Credit Card RegulationsOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

In Canada's economic action plan, Mr. Speaker, in the budget this year, we announced we would improve disclosure requirements for credit cards, that we would limit certain business practices that are not beneficial to consumers. We have consulted on these regulations. We have consulted with consumers. We have consulted with the industry. The regulations are being drafted. They will be released shortly.