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House of Commons Hansard #66 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was funding.

Topics

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, our government acted quickly by creating the economic action plan to help workers during the worldwide recession. We established temporary, targeted measures to help those who were hardest hit by the recession. We clearly indicated that these measures would be temporary, but we also made unprecedented investments to help workers get the training they need to find jobs.

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Josée Beaudin Bloc Saint-Lambert, QC

Mr. Speaker, when they were in opposition, the Conservatives criticized the Liberals for taking money from the employment insurance fund. Now they are doing the exact same thing.

They are about to pillage nearly $20 billion from the EI fund, when the employment crisis is not over and there is a desperate need for help.

How can the government claim not to have money to help the workers who are losing their jobs, when it is about to pillage $20 billion from the employment insurance fund?

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, as I said, we wanted to help those who were hardest hit by the recession. Our efforts were targeted and temporary. It was very important to do what we did—the Bloc voted against these measures, I should add—to help those people by providing training so that they would have the necessary skills for the jobs of today and tomorrow.

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Marlene Jennings Liberal Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives continue to insist on building new mega-prisons and keeping Canadians in the dark about their price tag.

Kevin Page estimated the cost of implementing just one of the Conservatives' many crime bills to be “one billion dollars annually...at a time when we are still generating deficits.”

What will these mega-prisons cost? Can the minister tell us?

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Provencher Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, our government has been very clear that our first priority is the safety and security of Canadians. We are prepared to put dangerous offenders in prisons.

We believe that the cost with respect to these prisons is justified in terms of the safety on the streets that it will create.

We would ask the member to support these initiatives to ensure that law-abiding Canadians can walk the streets and that prisoners remain in prison until it is time for them to come out.

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Marlene Jennings Liberal Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, the minister wants to spend $13 billion on megaprisons based on made-up statistics on unreported crime. It is no wonder that the government wants to abolish the long census. Facts and numbers are unimportant to the Conservatives.

Canadians are worried about their jobs, their pensions and the economy. Meanwhile, the government recklessly borrowed billions of dollars to give tax breaks to the wealthiest corporations and cut millions in funding for crime prevention programs. Why?

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Provencher Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, this has been the Liberal philosophy. The Liberals do not want dangerous criminals in prison but the Liberals want to register guns. They came up with the long gun registry, targeting law-abiding citizens and if they do not register their guns, send them to prison.

What a bizarre criminal justice philosophy: keep dangerous criminals on the street and send hard-working Canadians to prison. That is the Liberal philosophy

Government AdvertisingOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

John McCallum Liberal Markham—Unionville, ON

Mr. Speaker, while Canadians struggle with rising debt, the Conservatives made an economic decision to install and track exactly 8,587 giant signs. Media reports say each one costs upwards of $8,000 to buy and install.

Since the Conservatives have spent so much effort tracking each sign right down to the square metre where it was installed, can they tell Canadians just how much these signs cost down to the last penny?

Government AdvertisingOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, it is true there are a lot of signs out there and they are not just signs that we will find hanging on a wall or hanging on a signpost. They are signs of recovery, signs of hope, signs of opportunity.

Wherever we travel in the country taxpayers are saying, “What are you spending that money on? Are you sure it is a good investment?” We are being open and transparent. We are seeing the evidence of the man who put the action in the economic action plan, the member for Ottawa West—Nepean, right here.

Government AdvertisingOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

John McCallum Liberal Markham—Unionville, ON

Mr. Speaker, last year, the Conservatives doubled their advertising expenses to $89 million. A number of the ads looked like advertising for the Conservative Party.

When will the government implement a third-party review process to ensure that government advertising serves the interests of Canadians and not of the Conservative Party?

Government AdvertisingOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, of course, a lot of advertising goes to advertise things like awareness of H1N1 and so on.

However, it was interesting to read the quote from the Leader of the Opposition who was travelling this summer. He said, “We should prepare for 2017. What I want to see is ribbon cuttings everywhere. I want to see things opening. I want to see big banners”.

There is no doubt about it. He knows how to spend money. Does he know how to spend it wisely? The answer of course is he knows how to spend it because he is going to get it out of taxpayers' pockets.

Our way is to spend it wisely, show Canadians transparently and openly how we are doing it, and that is what we have been doing since the beginning.

HealthOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Patricia Davidson Conservative Sarnia—Lambton, ON

Mr. Speaker, our government understands the difficulties of Canadians living with multiple sclerosis.

Can the Minister of Health share with the House her latest efforts with respect to research on the possibilities associated with CCSVI?

HealthOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq ConservativeMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, my thoughts go out to all those who suffer from MS.

Our government, with the provinces and territories, is speaking with one voice. At last week's health ministers meetings my colleagues and I agreed on the importance of accelerating research so that families can make informed decisions about the MS treatment options.

We will move as quickly as possible based on the best available science. If the experts advise in favour of clinical trials, our government, working with the MS Society and provinces and territories, will ensure they are fully funded.

Government SpendingOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair NDP Outremont, QC

Mr. Speaker, Canada has lost 250,000 full-time jobs since October 2008. The deadline for economic stimulus spending is March 2011, and some municipalities will be penalized. At the same time, many cities are hoping for federal funding for sports infrastructure. Quebec City is bidding on the 2012 Olympics and wants to bring back the Nordiques. I see that my colleagues have forgotten their jerseys today.

Does the federal government plan to partner with the cities and provinces that want to build new sports and recreation infrastructure, yes or no?

Government SpendingOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, many Canadians are proud sports fans. They support their sports teams wherever they happen to be in all regions of this country and that is great to see. It brings not only cultural opportunities but also economic opportunities across the country.

These initiatives are primarily led by private sector interests. In the case of the NHL, these are wealthy owners along with wealthy hockey players who bring us a lot of fun, but they need to take the lead on this. We look forward to any leadership they might show in the private sector as we move forward with this kind of initiative.

Government SpendingOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair NDP Outremont, QC

Mr. Speaker, our manufacturing sector continues to get hammered, bleeding off a further 25,000 jobs in August. Right now, we are looking at $60 billion in tax decreases for Canada's most profitable corporations, $15 billion in profits for the banks for the first nine months of the year, but do not worry, they are planning to share it with themselves, $7.5 billion in bonuses for bank executives.

When is the government going to understand that billions for banks does not signal recovery for unemployed Canadians? What concrete measures are planned so that the economy does not stall further?

Government SpendingOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, first of all, the member opposite should get his facts right. We went through a difficult time in Canada during the recession that came from outside this country.

We did lose almost 400,000 jobs, but as of today we have recovered 430,000 net new jobs in this country. We have recovered more than all the jobs that were lost during the recession. Why is that? Because of sound economic management which is admired around the world.

Government SpendingOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Bloc Montmorency—Charlevoix—Haute-Côte-Nord, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Conservative government says that before investing any money in Quebec City's bid for the Olympic Games, the city must have confirmation that its bid has been selected for the games.

My question is simple: is this still the government's position?

Government SpendingOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Louis-Saint-Laurent Québec

Conservative

Josée Verner ConservativeMinister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the government has been very clear on this subject. Although we are big professional sports fans, the private sector must take the lead. That being said, if our government is to play a role in funding sports infrastructure within its means, it will do so fairly across the country.

Government SpendingOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Bloc Montmorency—Charlevoix—Haute-Côte-Nord, QC

Mr. Speaker, the minister did not answer the question I just asked.

I will give another example. In 2001, Paul Martin and the current Minister of Finance, who was finance minister at Queen's Park at the time, each gave the City of Toronto $500 million to support its bid for the 2008 Olympic and Paralympic Games, which failed. That is a double standard.

Why is the government refusing to invest in an important multi-purpose project like the Quebec City amphitheatre? This project has received the support of not only Quebec City, but also the Government of Quebec.

Government SpendingOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Louis-Saint-Laurent Québec

Conservative

Josée Verner ConservativeMinister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, our position has not changed.

When it comes to bidding for Olympic games, the federal government has always invested in Canadian cities that qualify.

I would like to remind the member for Montmorency—Charlevoix—Haute-Côte-Nord that in October 1993, his Bloc colleague, the member for Québec, said in Le Soleil that public moneys should not be used to fund such projects.

PensionsOral Questions

September 20th, 2010 / 2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Judy Sgro Liberal York West, ON

Mr. Speaker, nine million Canadians do not have a retirement pension plan. In the private sector, the problem is particularly serious, where 73% of employees do not have any retirement savings.

The Conservative government seems to have plenty of money for planes and prisons, and three-day G20 photo ops, but why has it still done nothing to help with the pension crisis that is threatening so many Canadian families?

PensionsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, we are all committed to ensuring Canadians have the best possible retirement income system. We have been listening to Canadians in public consultations. Several of the provinces have gone out to listen to Canadians to ensure that we arrive at the correct solutions. Our officials have continued to work on this since we had the federal-provincial-territorial finance ministers meeting on Prince Edward Island in June.

It is a complex issue. It has to be worked out between the federal government and the provinces, and we are working in that co-operative way.

PensionsOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Judy Sgro Liberal York West, ON

Mr. Speaker, I thank the minister for that answer, but we have been hearing those answers for at least 600 days or more.

Canadians continue to look for concrete action. We are more than willing on this side of the House to work with the government today, as we were yesterday, to improve pensions in a variety of ways. One is to implement a supplementary Canada pension plan. The second is a stranded agency to help companies going bankrupt. The third is to make changes to the bankruptcy law. We are willing to do that today.

Is the government willing to commit today to work with us to bring in real pension reform?

PensionsOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, what the official opposition actually had suggested in the House was some sort of voluntary new CPP method. This was rejected unanimously by our partners in the federation when we met and discussed the issue because it would not work and because the CPP would be unable to administer it.

If the opposition is prepared to work with us on the constructive solutions that most of the provinces agree with, we are more than happy to work with it on those.