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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

Canada PostPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:05 p.m.

Bloc

Claude DeBellefeuille Bloc Beauharnois—Salaberry, QC

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present petitions on behalf of the towns of Franklin, Ormstown, Howick, Saint-Urbain-Premier, Saint-Rémi and Saint-Chrysostome, all of which are located in my riding of Beauharnois—Salaberry.

These are in addition to the petitions on the same topic previously received from other towns, which I presented before the prorogation.

These petitioners call on the government to maintain the moratorium on closing rural post offices and to maintain, enhance and improve postal services.

Of course, with yesterday's budget, people are understandably concerned, and I hope that the government will listen to their concerns and meet their needs.

Harmonized Sales TaxPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:05 p.m.

NDP

Peter Julian NDP Burnaby—New Westminster, BC

Mr. Speaker, I have in my hand a petition signed by families in Vancouver and Surrey, British Columbia raising concerns about the HST that the federal Conservative government is bringing in. They are saying very clearly that with an additional cost of $500 per individual in British Columbia and, for a family of four, an additional cost of $2,000, this tax shift on ordinary families in British Columbia is simply irresponsible and that it is the worst possible timing for the HST.

These petitioners from British Columbia are saying very clearly to this Parliament that we need to work to rescind this HST and that we need to bring in a fairer tax system in British Columbia, one that does not penalize ordinary families rather than big, massive corporations and corporate CEOs.

Animal WelfarePetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:05 p.m.

Liberal

Gurbax Malhi Liberal Bramalea—Gore—Malton, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to present a petition on behalf of my constituents in support of Canada's commitment to the development of a universal declaration on animal welfare.

With consideration to the scientific consensus and public acknowledgement that animals can feel pain and can suffer, all efforts should be made to prevent animal cruelty and reduce animal suffering. Despite their recognized importance to humans, animals are often significantly affected by natural disasters and yet are seldom considered during relief efforts and emergency planning.

The petitioners call upon Parliament to maintain its support for the development of a universal declaration on animal welfare.

Young Offenders ActPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:05 p.m.

Liberal

Gurbax Malhi Liberal Bramalea—Gore—Malton, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to present a second petition on behalf of my constituents who have been victims of violent crimes committed by young offenders.

In support of the family of 15-year-old Baden Willcocks who was murdered on June 19, 2009, the petitioners call upon Parliament to implement the necessary changes to the Young Offenders Act for the benefit of the victims' families whose lives have been destroyed by the violent crimes committed by young offenders.

Firearms RegistryPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:05 p.m.

Conservative

Cathy McLeod Conservative Kamloops—Thompson—Cariboo, BC

Mr. Speaker, I wish to present a petition that follows many prior petitions from my constituents in Kamloops—Thompson—Cariboo. They are asking all parliamentarians to support private member's Bill C-391 to finally get rid of the wasteful long gun registry.

Harmonized Sales TaxPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:10 p.m.

NDP

Libby Davies NDP Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise in the House today to present two petitions.

Like my colleague from Burnaby—New Westminster, I have a petition from residents and families in the Lower Mainland of Vancouver who are drawing attention to their concern about the HST that is being imposed upon them.

They point out that the GST is charged on more products and services than the existing provincial sales tax and that this is really a tax shift and burden from big business onto families, consumers and community businesses that will have increasing costs on many of the everyday goods and services that people buy.

They call upon the Government of Canada to rescind the Harper-Campbell HST.

HousingPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:10 p.m.

NDP

Libby Davies NDP Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, my second petition is also signed by residents in Vancouver who support the need for a national housing strategy that will harmonize the work of all levels of government to ensure secure, adequate, accessible and affordable housing for all Canadians.

They ask that Parliament ensure swift passage of Bill C-304, An Act to ensure secure, adequate, accessible and affordable housing for Canadians.

PensionsPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:10 p.m.

Liberal

Scott Simms Liberal Bonavista—Gander—Grand Falls—Windsor, NL

Mr. Speaker, after a lengthy break, I am glad to be back to present this particular petition, and it is an honour for me to do so. It is on behalf of several pensioners and their families in the Exploits Valley area of Newfoundland and Labrador and it is signed by residents of the communities as well.

It calls upon the Minister of Finance to allow the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union and AbitibiBowater, the former mill in Grand Falls—Windsor, to transfer the pension assets to a trust, which would be designed to administer pension fund money and to use realistic interest rates with a view to ultimately protect the full value of the pension.

As the pensioners in the area have lost in value around 30% of their pensions, they are obviously concerned about this. They want the government to take action. They want it to help out in this particular situation with the union and the company.

I would like to personally thank the committee members for doing so much work on this, as more petitions are yet to come. They include: John Hamilton; David Grimes, the chair; Harry Parsons; Junior Downey; Phillip Walsh; Chuck Hopful; Gary Healey; Vic Mercer; George Clooney; Felix Gambin; Kevin Barry; Wade Hollettt; and Winston Ellsworth.

Air Passenger Bill of RightsPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:10 p.m.

NDP

Jim Maloway NDP Elmwood—Transcona, MB

Mr. Speaker, my petition is a call to adopt Canada's first air passenger bill of rights, Bill C-310. The bill would provide compensation to air passengers flying with all Canadian carriers, including charters, anywhere they fly.

The bill would include measures on compensation for overbooked flights, cancelled flights and unreasonable tarmac delays. The bill deals with late and misplaced baggage, all-inclusive pricing by airline companies in their advertising.

The legislation is inspired by the European Union law where overbookings have dropped significantly. Air Canada is already operating under European laws for flights in Europe. Why should a Canadian customer receive different treatment in Europe than in Canada?

In addition, the bill would ensure that passengers are kept informed of all flight changes, whether they are delays or cancellations. The new rules would be posted at airports and airlines must inform passengers of their rights and the process to file for compensation. The bill is not meant to punish their airlines. If the airlines follow the rules, they will not to pay one dollar in compensation to travellers.

I encourage the Government of Canada to pass this bill.

Human RightsPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:10 p.m.

Liberal

Irwin Cotler Liberal Mount Royal, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to table a petition from constituents in my riding of Mount Royal and vicinity expressing concern about the continuing imprisonment of Dr. Wang Bingzhang, a founder of the Chinese overseas democracy movement, who was convicted eight years ago of terrorism and espionage in a closed door, one day trial without legal representation and which the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention determined was without any foundation and was in violation of international law.

The signatories join the United States, the European Union, the United Nations and our own foreign affairs committee in calling upon the Chinese authorities to release Dr. Wang, particularly given his seriously deteriorating health in prison and his close Canadian connection. Dr. Wang is a graduate of McGill University. His parents live in British Columbia. His daughter lives in Montreal and is a McGill University student.

Our bilateral Canada-China relationship was founded on adherence to internationally accepted standards of human rights and the rule of law.

The petitioners therefore call upon Prime Minister Harper, the Canadian government and the Parliament of Canada to seek Dr. Wang's release from prison on compassionate grounds so that he may be reunited with his family and friends here in Canada.

Human RightsPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Conservative

The Deputy Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

I would remind the hon. member for Mount Royal not to use proper names but titles or ridings when referring to members of the House.

North Korean RefugeesPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

NDP

Claude Gravelle NDP Nickel Belt, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise to present petitions from dozens of people from Ontario requesting the House of Commons and the Government of Canada to support Motion No. 383 and vigorously participate in the international effort urging the Government of the People's Republic of China to ensure the safe passage of North Korean refugees to South Korea.

Child PornographyPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Liberal Mississauga South, ON

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to present a petition on behalf of a number of my constituents on a matter which has been dealt with sensibly over the past couple of years by an organization called CASE, which stands for Canadians Addressing Sexual Exploitation. This petition deals with the subject matter of child pornography and victimization, which obviously is a very important issue to this honourable House.

The petitioners point out to Parliament that the creation, use and circulation of child pornography is condemned by a clear majority of Canadians, and that the CRTC, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission, and Internet service providers have the responsibility for the content that is being transmitted to Canadians, and that anyone who uses the Internet to facilitate any sexual offences involving children is committing an offence.

Therefore, the petitioners call upon the Parliament of Canada to protect our children by taking all necessary steps to stop the Internet as a medium for the distribution of child victimization and pornography.

Child PornographyPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Conservative

John Duncan Conservative Vancouver Island North, BC

Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I would ask for unanimous consent to return to tabling of documents. I missed that part of the order.

Child PornographyPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Conservative

The Deputy Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

Is there unanimous consent to return to tabling of documents?

Child PornographyPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

Aboriginal AffairsRoutine Proceedings

March 5th, 2010 / 12:15 p.m.

Vancouver Island North B.C.

Conservative

John Duncan ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development

Mr. Speaker, under the provisions of Standing Order 32(2), I have the honour to table, in both official languages, copies of the Aboriginal Healing Foundation, Annual Report 2009.

Questions on the Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre Saskatchewan

Conservative

Tom Lukiwski ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I ask that all questions be allowed to stand.

Questions on the Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Conservative

The Deputy Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

Is that agreed?

Questions on the Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

The House resumed consideration of the motion that this House approves in general the budgetary policy of the government.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

12:15 p.m.

Conservative

The Deputy Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

Before question period, we were at the questions and comments stage following the speech given by the hon. member for Hochelaga.

The hon. member for Mississauga South.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

12:15 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Liberal Mississauga South, ON

Mr. Speaker, I welcome the member for Hochelaga to the House. His predecessor was very active in the House and I expect that the member will also be distinguished for his constituents.

The debate on the budget has been somewhat wide ranging, but from my own constituents, I am hearing a bit of concern about putting too much focus on just doing whatever it takes to eliminate the deficit, that even if there are wishes, they have to give people hope. People have also said that to go beyond two years would be guessing. There is no certitude. That is when most of this happens. If the government should happen to be successful in simply balancing the budget again, what condition would the country be in at the end of those five years?

This budget does not have a vision. It does not indicate the shape that Canada is going to be in. It does not anticipate the consequences of an aging society, the impact upon the quality of life of our seniors, our health care system, the opportunities for our youth, our status in the world. These are significant areas which the budget and the budget speech did not address. This is simply a mathematical exercise, hopefully to keep things quiet for a year until the Conservatives can have another election and then do their dirty work.

I wonder if the member would care to comment.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

12:20 p.m.

Bloc

Daniel Paillé Bloc Hochelaga, QC

Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for his words of welcome, although I was here in December.

We have spoken at length about eliminating the deficit and this kind of budgetary exercise. If this document achieves the desired results in five years, it will be more likely be due to luck, rather than the science of the finance department.

I used to be a public servant. People used to say that in times of crisis, the only person who is likely to be happy is the economist who predicted the crisis.

Where will Canada be in five years? It is our hope that Quebec will no longer be part of Canada at the end of the period targeted by this budget.

Financial Statement of Minister of FinanceThe BudgetGovernment Orders

12:20 p.m.

Lotbinière—Chutes-de-la-Chaudière Québec

Conservative

Jacques Gourde ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services and to the Minister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, in his first speech my colleague said that the Bloc Québécois did a tour of Quebec. I can tell him that the hon. members from the Bloc were very discreet when they passed through Chaudière-Appalaches because I did not see them go by.

In addition to consulting, our Quebec caucus goes everywhere in the regions of Quebec to spread the good news, namely that our government is investing in infrastructure—bridges, roads, arenas, multi-purpose centres, community centres and arts and cultural centres. This demonstrates the leadership quality of our entire team in Quebec.

We have also consulted farmers. Cattle producers had a problem related to specified risk materials. We listened. In the budget, on page 98, you will find the initiatives that will allow us to solve a major problem. Our producers need this.

Why did the hon. member for Hochelaga say yesterday that he is going to vote against the budget and against the initiatives for cattle producers who are in great need? How will my colleague explain to all the producers in the regions of Quebec that he voted against these very important measures?