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House of Commons Hansard #3 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was tax.

Topics

The BudgetStatements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Conservative

Gerald Keddy Conservative South Shore—St. Margaret's, NS

Mr. Speaker, budget 2010 implements year two of our economic action plan. It will help create jobs and promote the economic recovery by implementing $19 billion in new stimulus to create jobs now, investing to create jobs and growth for the economy of tomorrow and planning a return to budgetary balance once the economy recovers.

The budget also creates and protects jobs, sustains Canada's economic advantage and lays a strong foundation for the future by extending the enhancements to the work-sharing program, supporting young workers through internships and skills development, supporting innovation, training and research and development to create the jobs of tomorrow, investing in keeping taxes low to encourage growth and make us more competitive, eliminating tariffs to position Canada as an investment and trade friendly country, and cutting red tape to reduce the burden on Canadian businesses.

Canadians can trust our Conservative government to continue to put jobs and the economy first.

International SolidarityStatements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Liberal

Pablo Rodriguez Liberal Honoré-Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, the earthquakes that rocked Haiti and Chile in the past two months reminded us just how fragile everything is and how it can all be turned upside down from one moment to the next. They also reminded us of the importance of international solidarity in such tragic times.

Natural disasters strike without warning and can be merciless. When we work together, we reaffirm the dignity of human life in the face of nature's brute force.

Canada has a special role to play in helping its neighbours in the Americas, and I would like to take this opportunity to reassure our friends, our Chilean and Haitian brothers and sisters and their family members living here, that they can count on our unfailing support in these difficult times.

We stepped up for Haiti and Chile, and this House will always find a way to set aside its differences in times of crisis because, as a people, we know that there is a time for debate and a time for unity in the face of adversity. Chileans and Haitians know that they can count on our unfailing support.

Take heart; we are standing with them.

The BudgetStatements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Conservative

Jacques Gourde Conservative Lotbinière—Chutes-de-la-Chaudière, QC

Mr. Speaker, this budget will deliver year two of Canada's economic action plan. It will help solidify Canada’s economic recovery. It will invest $19 billion in order to create jobs now; it will invest in targeted actions to create jobs and stimulate growth for our economic future; and it outlines a plan for returning to a balanced budget.

How will we do it? By improving the work-sharing program; by supporting young workers through internships and skills development; by ensuring innovation, training, education, and research and development; by keeping taxes low; by eliminating tariffs to make Canada a better place to invest and to do business; and by cutting red tape in order to ease the burden for Canadian businesses.

While the Bloc Québécois is trying once again to make Quebec look like the victim and mislead the people, Quebeckers and Canadians can count on the Conservative government to ensure that employment and the economy remain at the forefront of government priorities.

Earthquake in ChileStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

NDP

Jim Maloway NDP Elmwood—Transcona, MB

Mr. Speaker, Canadians will know that early in the morning of February 27, 2010, an 8.8-power earthquake in southern Chile along with subsequent tsunami coastal flooding turned the lives of more than two million Chileans into a nightmare. While over 800 deaths have been confirmed, the search for bodies and any possible survivors is still ongoing.

After the initial priority to establish contact with family and friends was accomplished, the Chilean community in Winnipeg and elsewhere in Canada has been mobilizing to provide support to the affected people. As always, Canadians can be counted on to support both the immediate aid as well as the longer term rebuilding.

The question many Canadians are asking is, will the Canadian government be matching dollar for dollar the personal donations of Canadians for the victims of the Chilean earthquake and tsunami as it did for the Haitian catastrophe?

TaxationStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Conservative

Blaine Calkins Conservative Wetaskiwin, AB

Mr. Speaker, the Leader of the Opposition is a proudly self-described tax and spend Liberal. He believes the GST should be raised. He brags that he was the first Liberal to tout a carbon tax. If he becomes prime minister, he says he will “have to raise taxes”. The member for Parkdale—High Park even says, “Canadians are prepared to pay more taxes”.

The Liberals want higher taxes for everything: taxes for grandiose uncosted environmental plans, taxes for more Liberal social engineering programs, and taxes for megaproject after megaproject. Tax, tax, tax; that is all the Liberals talk about.

Liberals just do not get it. Higher taxes and unaffordable spending will not create jobs and do not encourage economic growth. These tax and spend ideas are a failed Liberal policy from the past. They did not work then and they will not work now.

Our jobs and growth budget maintains our funding commitments on health care, education and support for seniors without raising taxes. Our jobs and growth budget will help solidify Canada's economic recovery and sustain our economic advantage now and for the future without raising taxes.

The BudgetStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Bloc

Robert Carrier Bloc Alfred-Pellan, QC

Mr. Speaker, in the last three Conservative budgets, the interests of Quebec have been ignored. The Conservatives preferred to invest in Ontario's automobile industry to the detriment of Quebec's forestry industry. Their tax and environmental policies favour Alberta's oil industry and the changes to employment insurance have clearly favoured the unemployed in Ontario and western Canada.

The Conservative government's fifth budget, which was brought down yesterday, is no different: it is geared toward the needs of Ontario and Alberta. Whether we are talking about reinstating transfers for education, compensating Quebec for harmonizing taxes, or measures for a strong and sustainable recovery of Quebec's economy, Quebeckers' priorities have not been addressed.

The Conservatives have missed the boat again when it comes to Quebec. That is why the Bloc Québécois will stand up for Quebec and vote against this budget.

Prince Edward Island AthletesStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Liberal

Wayne Easter Liberal Malpeque, PE

Mr. Speaker, over the past month we have had the privilege of seeing Canadian athletes rise to the challenge and inspire our nation.

Today as a proud Canadian and islander, I wish to congratulate P.E.I.'s own superstars in both the Olympics and the Scotties Tournament of Hearts.

On February 23, during the nail-biting two-women bobsleigh finals at the Vancouver Olympics, Heather Moyse from Summerside and Kaillie Humphries broke records and rocketed past the competition to win gold for Canada.

On February 7, Kathy O'Rourke led her curling team from P.E.I. to the Scotties Tournament of Hearts finals and won silver. These island curlers, Kathy O'Rourke, Geri Lynn Ramsay, Erin Carmody, Tricia Affleck and Shelly Bradley, made us proud on the national stage.

We salute them. With passion and dedication, these athletes have represented P.E.I. and Canada with excellence and professionalism. Congratulations to these exceptional people and wonderful athletes.

The BudgetStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Conservative

James Lunney Conservative Nanaimo—Alberni, BC

Mr. Speaker, the budget yesterday kicks off year two of our economic action plan.

It will help solidify Canada's economic recovery by implementing new stimulus to create jobs now, investing in creating jobs of tomorrow, and planning a return to balanced budgets once the economy recovers.

The Liberal leader does not like these things. He says that he wants an alternative to our tax-cutting, job-creating economic action plan. We know what the Liberal leader means when he suggests an “alternative”: he favours the same failed tax-and-spend policies the Liberals are famous for.

When we deliver a plan that creates jobs and lowers taxes and the Liberal leader calls for an “alternative”, we know what he means. He wants to dig deeper into the pockets of Canadians with tax hikes to pay for his massive spending promises.

Our economic action plan is having a positive effect in communities right across the country, and our government will continue our job-creating plan despite the tax-hiking, job-killing alternative of the Liberal leader.

PensionsOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

Etobicoke—Lakeshore Ontario

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff LiberalLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, millions of seniors are worried because they do not have enough savings for their retirement. Their savings are at risk because their employers are not on solid ground. They depend on old age security and the Canada pension plan, a system that is in crisis. In this budget, all the government has to offer those who fear poverty is a holiday.

Why has the government abandoned the seniors of our country?

PensionsOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, the government has done no such thing. We have an unprecedented commitment to support seniors, those men and women who helped build this great country.

Poverty among seniors in this country has fallen by almost 50% since this government came to office, and we are very proud of that effort.

PensionsOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

Etobicoke—Lakeshore Ontario

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff LiberalLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, that is not an answer to the question.

The Liberal Party made specific suggestions with regard to pensions: a supplement for the Canada Pension Plan, an emergency fund and increased protection for long-term disability. These proposals would have allowed millions of Canadians to have peace of mind in their retirement.

Why did they settle for a mere holiday over our pertinent proposals?

PensionsOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, the government has brought in pension splitting, something that is benefiting seniors from coast to coast to coast. The government has made significant changes to the age credit. The initiatives the government has taken have seen seniors living in poverty decline by almost 50% in four short years.

We are a government that is committed to Canada's pension system, old age security, the guaranteed income supplement. It is a major priority of our government and we will continue to deliver for those men and women who built this country.

PensionsOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

Etobicoke—Lakeshore Ontario

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff LiberalLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, he should try that with those who put their faith in the Conservatives' income trust promise.

The government promised a plan for the pensions crisis in the last budget. Then the parliamentary secretary said he was holding “consultations”. Then the Prime Minister shut down Parliament in order to recalibrate. Nothing came of any of it. There is nothing in this budget on pensions.

The old Reform MPs, including the Prime Minister, got their pensions. What about Canadian seniors?

PensionsOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Finance has been doing a lot of good work with his provincial colleagues in recent months. He will continue to work on this important initiative.

That is why we are working so hard to ensure that we create an economy that will create jobs so that we will have more hope and more opportunity. A growing economy where we are creating jobs is the best defence against poverty.

The government has made an unprecedented commitment, and I will repeat it today, to ensure that our old age security, the guaranteed income supplement, the Canada pension plan and the additional measures we brought forward will be there for seniors so they can count on them and live a life of retirement they have so richly deserved.

TaxationOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

Liberal

John McCallum Liberal Markham—Unionville, ON

Mr. Speaker, the basis of the Conservative budget is total fiction. The Conservatives claim that they will not increase taxes, but in reality they have decided on a major increase in payroll taxes. These increases will cut 200,000 jobs.

Why will the Conservatives not admit that they are increasing taxes? Why have they decided on job-killing tax hikes?

TaxationOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, here are the facts. A year ago, we froze EI premiums. The purpose of this was to encourage employment and to not discourage people. This year, the premiums remain frozen, but we need to get the system back to normal.

What they are suggesting is a system that could not be sustained.

TaxationOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Liberal

John McCallum Liberal Markham—Unionville, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives always hide behind this uncontrollable arm's-length agency as if it were from outer space, and they pretend that this agency is dictating EI premium hikes and that there is nothing the all-controlling Prime Minister can do about it, even though he has already overruled that agency two years in a row.

Only one person in this country controls EI premiums, as he controls everything else in Ottawa, and that person is the Prime Minister. So why is the Prime Minister killing 200,000 jobs with punitive EI premium hikes?

TaxationOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, we froze the premium rates for EI for two years to encourage job protection and job growth. That is going to come at a cost. Next year the arm's-length, independent EI commission will be setting the premiums on a break-even basis for the long term.

What we will not do is use that fund for our political pet projects the way the Liberals did for years. Let us face it: the single biggest threat to raising EI premiums is the proposal by the opposition to bring in a 45-day work year, which would raise premiums astronomically.

The BudgetOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Bloc Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, whether we are talking about forestry, aerospace, the environment or culture, Quebeckers' priorities are completely ignored by the Conservative government. This budget, which continues to favour Ontario, the west and the oil companies, is one more sign that Canadian federalism does not benefit Quebec.

How could the government table a budget that is so empty and so detrimental to Quebec?

The BudgetOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis ConservativeMinister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, nothing could be further from the truth. This budget targets economic growth, job creation and maintaining our jobs. With regard to forestry, we are talking about $100 million over the next four years to support this sector and develop new market niches. The Forest Products Association of Canada is very happy about that.

We are also emphasizing innovation and the jobs of tomorrow. The opposition should stop their needless fearmongering.

The BudgetOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Bloc Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, if the government did away with the tax benefits for oil companies, it could start compensating Quebec for harmonizing the TVQ with the GST. It could also start improving employment insurance and the guaranteed income supplement for our seniors and introduce a real plan to help the forestry sector, instead of Conservative gimmicks.

Is it not true that this government's choices prove that there is no future for Quebec in the Canadian federal system?

The BudgetOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis ConservativeMinister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, when we are talking about seniors, we are talking about income splitting; seniors can split income for greater net gain. In addition, the age credit has been doubled. As for tax harmonization, we said so once again in the budget, the commitment is there in black and white. We are negotiating in good faith. For the unemployed, we extended the work sharing agreement by 26 weeks. In small communities, this is paying off, because jobs are being maintained.

Of course, we know that the Bloc voted against all these measures. It is shameful.

Forestry IndustryOral Questions

March 5th, 2010 / 11:20 a.m.

Bloc

Daniel Paillé Bloc Hochelaga, QC

Mr. Speaker, on page 259 of the budget presented yesterday, it says that the auto industry, which is concentrated in Ontario of course, received $9.7 billion, while the forestry sector received a mere $170 million.

However, these two sectors, which are both in crisis, have about the same number of jobs. As I travelled around Quebec, I saw that the forestry industry needs a cash infusion now more than ever if it is to stay alive.

How could the Minister of Finance conspire with Quebec Conservatives to present another budget—

Forestry IndustryOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. Minister of State.

Forestry IndustryOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean Québec

Conservative

Denis Lebel ConservativeMinister of State (Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec)

Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois is up to its usual tricks: disinformation and twisting the facts.

Quebec's forestry industry is governed by an agreement that we signed with our American partners at the request of the provinces and the forestry industry, an agreement that allows us to export wood to the United States.

The Bloc knows very well that the auto sector is subject to an agreement among the United States, Ontario and Canada in a free market. It is apples and oranges. They are trying to make political hay, but we are taking care of workers and we will not sink to the Bloc's level of rhetoric.