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House of Commons Hansard #28 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was budget.

Topics

Keeping Canada's Economy and Jobs Growing ActGovernment Orders

1:55 p.m.

Conservative

Joy Smith Conservative Kildonan—St. Paul, MB

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to stand today in support of the budget implementation bill, Bill C-13. The bill has been debated for a very long time. It was initially tabled in the House on March 22, and today we are dealing with the implementation of the second phase of that bill.

What has happened since we started this discussion? Not only was it debated in the House, not only did it go to committee for a thorough examination and not only did it come back to the House, but we had an election. During that election, I think every member went door to door and talked about the budget. What happened in the end? The Conservatives have a majority government. Why? It is because Canadians said that this government would take care of the economy in this country.

Why were Canadians worried about that? They were worried because there was a disaster in Haiti, a disaster in Japan and a disaster in Iceland where two volcanoes erupted and caused a lot of problems with air quality and things like that. During those disasters, Canada generously participated to help communities and it kept a close eye on what was happening on our economic home front.

The Prime Minister has taken an amazing leadership role. Canada is known as the country with the most economic stability in the world at this point in time. It is not just this side of the House saying that. Many well-known companies, organizations and third parties have said that. Canada has the strongest job growth record in the G7.

What has happened because of this good planning? Six hundred thousand new jobs have been created and Canada's people are working. That is incredible.

The International Monetary Fund is forecasting that Canada will have the strongest overall economic growth in the G7 over the next two years. That is why we need to pass the second phase of this budget implementation bill and allow the economy to grow. Many wonderful things are happening and Canada is in a stable situation. Why? It is because our Prime Minister and the caucus have put together an economic plan that is good for Canada, Canadians, families and seniors.

Canada has the lowest total government net debt to GDP ratio in the G7, which is something to be proud of. We will get the deficit under control. There is a plan to do that.

The World Economic Forum ranks Canada's financial system as the soundest in the world for the fourth consecutive year. That is amazing in this global downturn. Moody's is renewing Canada's triple A credit rating due to our economic resilience. There is very high government financial strength. The world is saying that it is looking to Canada as a leader. As the prime minister of England said, “this is Canada's year”. This is Canada's year because of the leadership.

Keeping Canada's Economy and Jobs Growing ActGovernment Orders

2 p.m.

Conservative

The Acting Speaker Conservative Barry Devolin

Order, please. I must interrupt the hon. member for Kildonan—St. Paul at this point to move on to statements by members. When the House returns to this matter she will have six minutes remaining in her speech.

Louiseville Buckwheat Pancake FestivalStatements By Members

2 p.m.

NDP

Ruth Ellen Brosseau NDP Berthier—Maskinongé, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to draw attention to an important event in my riding.

The Louiseville Buckwheat Pancake Festival began on September 30 and will run until October 9. This festival has become a community fixture over its 33-year history, and I would like to highlight the work of its numerous volunteers. Louiseville has been officially recognized as buckwheat country, which goes to show how important this festival is. The people of Berthier—Maskinongé are proud of their history and traditions. The area knows how to showcase its culture and local products.

Along with the festival's organizers and the people of Berthier—Maskinongé, I would like to invite the public to come celebrate with us and take part in the cultural, social and gastronomic activities that are taking place in Louiseville.

JusticeStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Kevin Sorenson Conservative Crowfoot, AB

Mr. Speaker, my constituents know that, while restorative justice approaches complement other criminal justice system responses to criminal behaviour, they are not intended to replace them.

That is why we are strengthening our laws, investing in crime prevention and increasing police presence on our streets. At the same time, we are respecting the rights of the accused, but we recognize that the rights of the criminals should not take precedence over victims and community safety.

This is one of the reasons that our legislation to crack down on child sex offenders and those who would deal drugs to youth has such widespread support among victims and our communities.

We have doubled the budget of the National Crime Prevention Centre and emphasized programming to help youth at risk. We created the youth gang prevention fund and increased its funding.

Canadians can count on us to keep their communities and streets safe and to stand up for victims.

It is about time the opposition supported victims and stopped obstructing our legislation.

Holocaust Remembrance DayStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Irwin Cotler Liberal Mount Royal, QC

Mr. Speaker, 70 years ago, in one of the worst and horrific atrocities of the Holocaust, 33,731 Jews were murdered in just two days at Babi Yar, an unspeakable horror too terrible to be believed, but not too terrible to have happened.

For 50 years, the fact that the murdered men, women and children were Jews was not even acknowledged, their identities simply erased, effectively killing the victims yet again.

It is with and because of the remnant of survivors in my constituency, as in the Ukraine and elsewhere, that we remember that each murdered person had an identity, that each was a universe and that we promise that never again will we be indifferent to racism and hate. Never again will we be silent in the face of evil. Never again will we be indulgent to anti-Semitism and mass atrocity anywhere.

May Babi Yar not be just an act of remembrance, which it is, but let it be a remembrance to act, which it must be.

The EnvironmentStatements By Members

October 6th, 2011 / 2 p.m.

Conservative

Robert Sopuck Conservative Dauphin—Swan River—Marquette, MB

Mr. Speaker, Canada's oil sands and energy sector drive the Canadian economy. The benefits for Canadian families and workers are simply overwhelming.

The Keystone pipeline and northern gateway project will help power our economy and deliver jobs for Canadian working families.

Employment resulting from these projects is expected to reach 1.6 million jobs by 2035. In the next 25 years, the effect on Canada's GDP will be over $2 trillion, according to the Canadian Energy Research Institute.

By 2035, the investments and revenues from the oil sands will be close to $5 trillion. Canada's working men and women will receive $1.5 trillion in wages as a result of oil sands investment during this time.

The economy and jobs are our government's top priority, and Canada has some of the strongest environmental standards in the world.

Therefore, why is the NDP working with environmental extremists who want to destroy the livelihoods of thousands of Canadians who work in the oil sands and live from coast to coast to coast?

Dartmouth—Cole HarbourStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Robert Chisholm NDP Dartmouth—Cole Harbour, NS

Mr. Speaker, there is a buzz in Dartmouth—Cole Harbour right now. There is hope and optimism about our future. Companies are moving from Toronto to Dartmouth excited by the great potential they see. There are amazing new developments happening on the waterfront, bringing people and vitality to our beautiful harbour.

Excitement is building about a successful contract bid from our shipyards. In fact, Nova Scotia Community College just expanded its world-class metal fabrication program. People are talking, taking action and working hard to make life in Dartmouth--Cole Harbour better for themselves and others.

That is not to say that we do not have challenges in Dartmouth—Cole Harbour. We do. There is clearly much work to be done and there is much that the government could do to help if it were able to listen and not be so out of touch.

Despite these issues, despite the challenges and despite the lack of progressive vision and compassionate leadership from the government, Dartmouth—Cole Harbour is growing stronger. We are making a name for ourselves and it is the people of my constituency who should be applauded for that. This--

Dartmouth—Cole HarbourStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

Order, please. The hon. member for Kildonan—St. Paul.

Guinness World RecordStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Joy Smith Conservative Kildonan—St. Paul, MB

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise today to pay tribute to Arvid Loewen, a constituent from my riding of Kildonan—St. Paul, who has spent much of his life contributing to young people and families in our community. In 2006 Arvid resigned from his job to become a full time volunteer ambassador for the Mully Children's Family, a non-profit organization in Kenya that rescues and cares for vulnerable, at risk children. To date, Mully Children's Family has helped over 7,000 children.

This past summer, Arvid, a 54-year-old grandfather of three, decided to cycle across Canada to raise awareness and funds for the children in Kenya and challenge the standing Guinness world record. Arvid began his grueling journey in Vancouver on July 1, 2011, cycling 22 hours a day and sleeping only 2 hours a night. Thirteen days, 16 hours and 13 minutes later, Arvid arrived in Halifax, setting a new Guinness world record.

Former Member of Parliament for LethbridgeStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Jim Hillyer Conservative Lethbridge, AB

Mr. Speaker, tomorrow southern Albertans and many members and former members of the House will come to my riding in Lethbridge to celebrate the selfless career of over 30 years of public service of my predecessor and mentor, the Hon. Rick Casson. He came to Parliament in 1997 and worked tirelessly to provide a strong conservative voice for southern Alberta for 14 years. I am honoured that they have put their trust in me to do the same.

As chair of the defence committee, Mr. Casson was a genuine champion for the men and women in uniform and military veterans, particularly for those who served and sacrificed in Afghanistan.

Finally, it would be appropriate to acknowledge the 12 members of the House who have served in the military, including the member for Pickering—Scarborough East who sits two seats to my right, who served a tour of duty in Afghanistan in 2007.

I would like to thank these colleagues for a lifetime of service to our great country.

Organization for Single ParentsStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Raymond Côté NDP Beauport—Limoilou, QC

Mr. Speaker, last Sunday I had the pleasure of attending the 25th anniversary celebrations of Sources Vives, an organization serving Beauport, Côte-de-Beaupré, Île d'Orléans and Sainte-Brigitte-de-Laval. The organization was founded by single parents, both men and women, in order to bring people together and provide support for anyone in that situation or going through a separation.

The many services offered by this organization help to put an end to isolation, enhance families and cultivate positive attitudes. Thus, it has a special place in the community.

In closing, I wish to commend all the administrators and volunteers for their initiative and the success of the organization, and I wish them all the best in their future endeavours.

VeteransStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Greg Kerr Conservative West Nova, NS

Mr. Speaker, when the new veterans charter was introduced, our Conservative government promised Canada's veterans that it would be a living document, and we kept our promise. This week, the enhancements to the new veterans charter came into force. Through these enhancements, we are providing improved care and financial assistance, an enhanced earnings loss benefit and options for disability award payments.

Canada's veterans requested changes to the new veterans charter and we responded.

Enhancements to the new veterans charter are just one way in which the Conservative government is working to provide our veterans and their families the support they need. We must never forget the wonderful contribution these great Canadians have made to our country.

Affordable Social HousingStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Tyrone Benskin NDP Jeanne-Le Ber, QC

Mr. Speaker, the state of affordable social housing in this country is pitiful. The various affordable social housing programs administered by the federal government provide residents with inadequate basic living conditions and ignore those who need specialized services or who have physical limitations.

This government should do more to support affordable social housing.

In this time of austerity we must never forget that social housing is not wasted money. It is a sound economic investment. The more we do to help those who are most in need, the faster they will be able to find their own footing and participate in and contribute to Canada's economy. By helping people with basics, such as a base from which they can begin to build, we can help them turn their lives around.

Everyone has trouble making ends meet at some point. I encourage the government, on behalf of my constituency, to make a true investment in Canada. I challenge the government to see that economic prosperity is not only banks and multinationals, but about the people of Canada and especially those that need our help from time to time.

The EconomyStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Chungsen Leung Conservative Willowdale, ON

Mr. Speaker, our government's top priority remains on completing the economic recovery. Canadians gave our Conservative government a strong mandate to stay focused on what matters: creating jobs and economic growth.

Canada has now created nearly 600,000 net new jobs since January 2009. We are the only G7 country that has regained more than all of the output and the jobs lost during the downturn.

We are not immune to the volatile global economic environment, largely due to problems of confidence in the efforts of governments to reduce their deficits. This is why our government is staying the course with our low tax plan to create jobs and growth. The last thing the Canadian economy needs is a massive NDP tax hike that would kill jobs, stall our recovery and set Canadian families back.

The next phase of the Canadian economic action plan will preserve our country's advantage in the global economy.

MulticulturalismStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Jim Karygiannis Liberal Scarborough—Agincourt, ON

Mr. Speaker, on October 8, 1971, Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau introduced multiculturalism. Canadian multiculturalism represents the belief that no matter where one comes from or how long one has been in Canada, once the oath of citizenship is taken, one is a Canadian.

For too long political parties have relied on ethnic or cultural groups to vote for them. It is time that we integrate multicultural communities as full partners in the decision-making process of Canada. We need to ensure that all Canadians are fully engaged in the great experiment we call Canada. Multiculturalism is alive and well in Canada and it has a rightful place in our country.

We need to respect our fellow Canadians as equals. We need to accept them as full participants in all aspects of Canadian life. We need to celebrate their full participation in our communities. We need to embrace where it will take us. We need to come together as Canadians and show the world that in Canada we are all equal parts of the human race.

HealthStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Colin Carrie Conservative Oshawa, ON

Mr. Speaker, today the hon. Minister of Health announced a new approach for energy drinks, which will include maximum limits for caffeine content. The proposed maximum caffeine levels for energy drinks is part of a new way to manage these popular beverages. Parents need to have access to as much information as possible so they are able to make good decisions when it comes to what their family eats and drinks.

The popularity of energy drinks has resulted in higher levels of caffeine consumption among young people than in the past. This has caused concerned among some parents, health care providers and public health officials about potential health risks to teens and children. These new measures will not only allow Canadians to make informed decisions, they will also reduce the chances of over consumption of caffeine and other ingredients, such as vitamins.

Today's proposed changes will be especially helpful to parents of teenagers who regularly consume energy drinks.

I applaud the Minister of Health for taking this initiative. This is yet another example of how our government is committed to taking action to support Canadian families.

Aviation SafetyStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

NDP

Dennis Bevington NDP Western Arctic, NT

Mr. Speaker, on Tuesday, northerners were devastated by the fourth airplane crash in only weeks.

On Tuesday, an Air Tindi Cessna 208 crashed on a scheduled flight from Yellowknife to Lutselk'e, killing the pilot and one passenger. This crash comes only days after the funerals for two pilots killed when an Arctic Sunwest Twin Otter crashed in Yellowknife's Old Town, injuring seven others. The day after that crash, a single-engine Cessna crashed near Fort Simpson. Luckily the pilot walked away.

On August 12, a First Air 737 crashed near Resolute Bay killing 12 of the 15 on board. The crew of that aircraft was based in Yellowknife.

I am sure all members of the House will stand with me to extend their condolences to the families and friends of the victims of these crashes.

For northerners, flying is something they do all the time due to the isolation of our communities. They have no other choice. Understandably, they are concerned about the safety of northern aviation.

Last year, government officials promised to beef-up transport Canada's aviation safety inspection arm. My constituents want to know if the government has kept its promises.

JusticeStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Brent Rathgeber Conservative Edmonton—St. Albert, AB

Mr. Speaker, our Conservative government received a strong mandate to keep our streets and communities safe. That is why we are committed to a zero tolerance policy for drugs in prison.

Our government has been consistent: we must develop a correctional system that actually corrects criminal behaviour.

We reject categorically suggestions from the NDP and their soft on crime friends like the Elizabeth Fry Society that suggest: providing prisoners with needles and drugs in order to engage in harm reduction; taking drugs away from prisoners violates the Charter of Rights and Freedoms; drug interdiction methods are unfair to inmates by violating their privacy and drug sniffing dogs can scare away visitors; and, most shockingly of all, strip searches of inmates suspected of smuggling drugs or weapons is tantamount to “lawful sexual assault by the state”.

Yesterday the member for Sackville—Eastern Shore demanded that I apologize for allegedly wronging this criminal group. I suggest it is the NDP that should apologize to Canadians for its complicity in the soft on crime coalition and for refusing to stand up for victims. I call—

JusticeStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

Order. Oral questions. The hon. Leader of the Opposition.

G8 SummitOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Hull—Aylmer Québec

NDP

Nycole Turmel NDPLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the President of the Treasury Board was a no-show at a conference about freedom of information, which is not a surprise considering his track record.

He used his personal email to go undetected. He left no paper trail. His ally from Huntsville now says the paper trails and emails are a bad idea, that they should have spoken on the phone.

Does the Prime Minister realize that the minister has lost all credibility?

G8 SummitOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, if this is a reference to the G8 funding, I think this has been looked at thoroughly by the Auditor General. The government has accepted those recommendations. There were 32 projects. They were all public. They all came in at or under budget, and they are all good projects for the area.

G8 SummitOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Hull—Aylmer Québec

NDP

Nycole Turmel NDPLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the Auditor General said that the government violated the rules by establishing the G8 legacy fund. He did not find any evidence or explanations justifying how or why this $50 million was spent. The minutes from municipal meetings provide us with a hint: in them, the minister says that it is the Prime Minister's Office that decides.

Can the Prime Minister explain why his office was involved in the distribution of G8 funds?

G8 SummitOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, it has now been several months since the Auditor General examined this situation, and the facts have not changed. The Minister of Transport was the one who approved 32 public projects. All the money was spent fairly and all these projects were carried out under the appropriate budget. These are good projects for the riding.

G8 SummitOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Hull—Aylmer Québec

NDP

Nycole Turmel NDPLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the Auditor General spoke to five departments to try to understand what happened and figure out who decided what. No one was able to provide an answer. The only answer we were able to find was in the minutes from municipal meetings, which quote the minister as saying that the budgets must first be approved by the Prime Minister's Office. That is what the minister said.

If he has nothing to hide, is the Prime Minister prepared to open his books to the Auditor General?

G8 SummitOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, there is nothing new here. The Auditor General reviewed these projects several months ago now and the government accepted her recommendations.