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House of Commons Hansard #60 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was organs.

Topics

Income Tax ActRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Conservative

Russ Hiebert Conservative South Surrey—White Rock—Cloverdale, BC

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-377, An Act to amend the Income Tax Act (requirements for labour organizations).

Mr. Speaker, it is my privilege to introduce a bill that would amend the Income Tax Act for labour organizations.

Labour organizations play a valuable role in society, representing and defending the rights of workers to health and safety on the job and ensuring that they have proper compensation for the work they do. As a result of the valuable role that they play, our government has provided substantial benefits through the Income Tax Act to support the work of labour organizations.

This bill would amend the Income Tax Act to require the public disclosure of labour organization finances. Public disclosure will help the public better understand how the benefits that are provided are being utilized. This is in line with the increased transparency we have introduced for government departments, agencies and native reserves. It is also in line with the public disclosure required of charities and political parties, which also receive substantial public benefits through the tax system.

I want to note that public disclosure is strongly supported by the Canadian public and by union workers themselves.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

Veterans AffairsCommittees of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Carleton—Mississippi Mills Ontario

Conservative

Gordon O'Connor ConservativeMinister of State and Chief Government Whip

Mr. Speaker, I offer the following travel motion for consideration. I move:

That, in relation to its study on the review of the delivery of front-line health and well-being services for Canadian veterans, seven members of the Standing Committee on Veterans Affairs be authorized to travel to Vancouver, British Columbia, and to Edmonton and Cold Lake, Alberta, in December 2011, and that the necessary staff accompany the committee.

(Motion agreed to)

AsbestosPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

NDP

Pat Martin NDP Winnipeg Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, I am proud to present a petition signed by literally thousands of Canadians from all across the country.

The petitioners call upon the House of Commons and Parliament assembled to take note that asbestos is the greatest industrial killer that the world has ever known. They point out that more Canadians now die from asbestos than all other industrial causes combined, yet Canada remains one of the largest producers and exporters of asbestos in the world. They also complain that Canada spends millions of dollars subsidizing the asbestos industry and blocking international efforts to curb its use.

The petitioners call upon the government to ban asbestos in all of its forms and institute a just transition program for asbestos workers and the communities they live in; they call upon the government to end all government subsidies of asbestos, both in Canada and abroad; and, finally, they call upon the government to stop blocking international health and safety conventions designed to protect workers from asbestos, such as the Rotterdam Convention.

Human SmugglingPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Marc Garneau Liberal Westmount—Ville-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, I have the pleasure to present two petitions today. The first deals with Bill C-4.

The petitioners draw to the attention of the Government of Canada that Bill C-4, the preventing human smugglers from abusing Canada's immigration system act, violates sections 7 and 15 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and furthermore that Bill C-4 violates Canada's international obligations as set forth in articles 28, 31 and 33 of the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, violates several articles in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, as well as in the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

The petitioners point out that smuggling is already punishable by life imprisonment or a fine of up to $1 million in the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act.

For that reason, these petitioners call upon the Government of Canada to withdraw Bill C-4.

HealthPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Marc Garneau Liberal Westmount—Ville-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is also my pleasure to present a second petition calling for a royal commission on the environment and health.

I quote: “We the undersigned residents of Canada draw the attention of the Government to the following: that during the past 70 years tens of thousands of chemicals, many of which are cancer-causing, have been used in industrial processes and the production of consumer goods; that some of these chemicals now contaminate our air, water and food; that over the last 10-15 years, new technologies, such as those that create genetically modified organisms and nanoparticles, have developed rapidly and are being used in the production of consumer goods; that there have been few independent peer review studies and no transparent, inclusive, in-depth discussion of possible environmental and health impacts of these substances and technologies; that protection of human health and the environment requires rigorous application of the precautionary principle;”

“Therefore, your petitioners call upon the Government of Canada to appoint a royal commission on the environment and health with a mandate to examine and make a certain number of recommendations”.

HealthPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

I would remind members not to read the actual petition, but just to provide a succinct summary.

The hon. member for Kingston and the Islands.

Safe Streets and Communities ActPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Ted Hsu Liberal Kingston and the Islands, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to present a petition that has been signed by Canadians across the country from small towns and big cities. It is regarding Bill C-10, which we are going to be voting on later today.

The petitioners wish to draw the attention of the House to the fact that this bill currently bundles together too many pieces of unrelated legislation, some of which make sense and some of which do not. They also wish to draw the attention of this House to the fact that there is a big problem with implementation, because Ontario and Quebec may refuse to pay the costs of some of the measures that would be downloaded to them.

Therefore, the petitioners call on Parliament to separate Bill C-10 into its pieces and allow members to vote on each part separately.

Employment InsurancePetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

NDP

Francine Raynault NDP Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to present a petition today signed by over 1,300 people who want to see the Employment Insurance Act amended. We want to increase the number of weeks of compassionate care benefits for parents who must care for a loved one or child from 6 to 50.

I would like to pay tribute to the courage and determination of Anne-Marie Gravel, who initiated this petition. She is a constituent of mine whose son recently passed away from cancer.

The government must pay more attention to caregivers. We are talking about their quality of life. This is a matter of respect.

Multiple SclerosisPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:15 p.m.

Liberal

Kirsty Duncan Liberal Etobicoke North, ON

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to present this petition regarding CCSVI. International data suggest that one-third of MS patients significantly improve following the procedure, one-third moderately improve and one-third show no to little improvement. Regardless, no drugs have ever reversed the symptoms of devastating MS.

Studies from Argentina, Britain, Bulgaria, India, Poland and the United States show a significant improvement in quality of life. Moreover, we have peer-reviewed literature, presentations from eight international conferences, reports from returning Canadian MS patients treated outside Canada as well as recommendations by such groups as the American Society of Interventional Radiology and the Canadian Society for Vascular Surgery.

The petitioners are calling on the Minister of Health to consult experts actively engaged in diagnosis and treatment of CCSVI to undertake phase III clinical trials on an urgent basis in multiple centres across Canada and to require follow-up care.

Questions on the Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

3:15 p.m.

Portage—Lisgar Manitoba

Conservative

Candice Bergen ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, the following question will be answered today: No. 187.

Question No. 187Questions on the Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

3:15 p.m.

Liberal

Lawrence MacAulay Liberal Cardigan, PE

With regard to Canadian Coast Guard Search and Rescue (SAR) Centres: (a) does the government plan on using the closure of the St. John’s SAR Centre as a template for the future closure of the Quebec City SAR Centre and, if so, when will the Quebec City SAR Centre close; (b) what will the total transition costs associated with these closures be; (c) how many part-time, full-time and contract employees will lose jobs due to these closures; (d) will employees who lose jobs due to the closures be offered any type of severance pay and, if so, how much will be offered, (i) what will the total costs associated with any severance be; (e) what was the total operating cost for Halifax, Trenton, St. John’s and Quebec City SAR Centres for 2010; (f) what were the 2010 operating costs for the individual centres, (i) Halifax, (ii) Trenton, (iii) St. John’s, (iv) Quebec City; (g) what are the government's projected annual operating costs for the two remaining centres, (i) combined and individually, (ii) Halifax, (iii) Trenton; (h) what are the costs associated with needed infrastructure upgrades to accommodate the proposed changes in (i) Halifax, (ii) Trenton; (i) will all the employees at the remaining centres in Halifax and Trenton be fully bilingual at the highest capacity; and (j) will the government have to spend money and resources on improving French language abilities by SAR employees following the closure of the Quebec City SAR Centre and what will the total costs associated with this be?

Question No. 187Questions on the Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

3:15 p.m.

Fredericton New Brunswick

Conservative

Keith Ashfield ConservativeMinister of Fisheries and Oceans and Minister for the Atlantic Gateway

Mr. Speaker, with regard to (a), work is under way to consolidate both the St. John's and Quebec Marine Rescue Sub-Centres, MRSC, into Halifax and Trenton Joint Rescue Coordination Centres, with completion scheduled in spring 2012. Due to the complexity of the project, full implementation will not occur until the Canadian Coast Guard, CCG, is comfortable that the present level of safety and service can be maintained in both official languages. The Coast Guard has completed initial operational reviews on both St. John's and Quebec Sub-centres and a national implementation team, jointly participated by the CCG and the Department of National Defence, will apply the best practices from both MRSC consolidations to ensure that the transition will be seamless and public safety will be assured.

With regard to (b), the total cost to consolidate both centres will include expenses such as hiring, relocation and training costs for employees and changes to existing centres and communications systems. The total cost is unknown at this time, as expenses will continue to be incurred over the next several months.

With regard to (c), a total of 23 indeterminate, i.e., full-time, employees are in an "Affected" status in accordance with the work force adjustment policies in their union/management collective agreement, as their positions are being eliminated. These include 12 in St. John's MRSC, six in Quebec MRSC, and five at the Halifax Joint Rescue Coordination Centre, JRCC. Twelve new positions will be created, six in Halifax, six in Trenton, and all affected employees at the St. John’s and Quebec MRSCs were offered relocation as part of the consolidation implementation. Each employee is being assisted in order to meet their needs in a timely manner. There are also three term employees on contract whose term will not be extended, as the position is being eliminated.

With regard to (d), the 23 full-time employees are being offered assistance in accordance with the work force adjustment policies of their collective agreement. As each employee has a unique plan to address their situation, individual or total costs are not available at this time

With regard to (e), the total Coast Guard operating costs for salaries, operations and management for these four centres in 2010-11 were $5.6 million.

With regard to (f), the total Coast Guard operating costs for salaries, operations and management for 2010-11 were as follows: Halifax, $1.9 million; Trenton, $1 million; St John's, $1.7 million; and Quebec, $930,000.

With regard to (g), the projected total operating costs for salaries, operations and management for both JRCC Trenton and JRCC Halifax are approximately $4.5 million, while the breakdown between the tow JRCCs is still being finalized.

With regard to (h), no incremental accommodation costs are being incurred at the JRCC Halifax, due to a pre-existing renovation plan already being put in place. Concerning JRCC Trenton, this is being determined at this time, so no estimate is yet available.

With regard to (i), language requirements at the MRSCs are currently set at BBB by the Coast Guard and deemed satisfactory by previous reviews conducted by the Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages. Following consolidation, both Trenton and Halifax Joint Rescue Coordination Centres will have the capacity to provide services in both official languages and bilingual capacity at the CBC level, an increase above the levels that are in place now at both Halifax and Trenton. The level of bilingual service is regularly reviewed by the Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages.

With regard to (j), as is the case throughout the Canadian Coast Guard, resources will be dedicated to maintaining and/or improving the French language abilities of the Coast Guard's search and rescue coordinators. However, total costs will be determined following the staffing of these positions.

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

3:15 p.m.

Portage—Lisgar Manitoba

Conservative

Candice Bergen ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety

Furthermore, Mr. Speaker, if Questions Nos. 179, 183 and 184 could be made orders for returns, these returns would be tabled immediately.

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

3:15 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

Is that agreed?

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

3:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

Question No. 179Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

3:15 p.m.

NDP

Denise Savoie NDP Victoria, BC

With regard to Transport Canada, and the government’s role in the management and operation of the Victoria Harbour Airport (VHA) and the Victoria Harbour: (a) what is the process by which Transport Canada or its agents have evaluated, are evaluating, and plan to evaluate the impact on quality of life, noise and air pollution and the frequency of air traffic (including takeoffs, landings, taxiing, and other related activities) associated with operations at the VHA; (b) to date, what analysis has the government conducted with respect to the effects on the communities surrounding the airport and their residents of the impact on quality of life, noise, air pollutants and the frequency of air traffic (including takeoffs, landings, taxiing, and other related activities) associated with operations at the VHA; (c) what further analysis does the government plan to conduct with respect to the effects on the communities surrounding the airport and their residents of the impact on quality of life, noise, air pollutants and the frequency of air traffic (including takeoffs, landings, taxiing, and other related activities) associated with operations at the VHA; (d) what are the parameters of all past and planned analysis with respect to the effects on the communities surrounding the airport and their residents of the impact on quality of life, noise, air pollutants and the frequency of air traffic (including takeoffs, landings, taxiing, and other related activities) associated with operations at the VHA; (e) what steps has the government taken, and will the government take, to address problems associated with the impact on quality of life noise, air pollutants and air traffic frequency (including takeoffs, landings, taxiing, and other related activities) associated with operations at the VHA; (f) what is the timeline for completion of this process, including but not limited to (i) any evaluations, (ii) any decision to regulate or impose rules with respect to noise and air pollution and the frequency of air traffic; (g) with respect to the past and planned resident’s committees and any public consultation relating to the VHA, what will be the composition of the resident’s committee; (h) what action has the government taken on the basis of past results, information, and recommendations arising out of public consultation thus far, including the past resident’s committee; (i) what are the terms of reference for the new resident’s committee, including but not limited to scope, powers, membership, evaluation criteria; (j) how will Transport Canada and the VHA evaluate and act upon the results, information, concerns and recommendations of the residents committee; (k) what policies, practices and procedures do Transport Canada and the VHA have in place to mitigate all real or perceived conflicts of interest between Transport’s Canada’s role as both operator of the VHA and as the government body having jurisdiction over aeronautics; (l) what are the current government policy, practices and procedures relating to its federal responsibilities with respect to noise and traffic pollution; (m) what are the details of all current draft regulations pertaining to the VHA and its operations; (n) when does the government or its agents plan to publish permanent air safety or other regulations pertaining to the VHA and its operations; (o) does the VHA have a complete Safety Management System (SMS); (p) what are the details of the process by which Transport Canada is assessing the application to build a mega yacht marina in Victoria Harbour (Marina); (q) what policies, practices and procedures do Transport Canada and the VHA have in place to mitigate all real or perceived conflicts of interest between Transport’s Canada’s role as both operator of the VHA and as the government body having jurisdiction to approve or deny the construction of the Marina under the Navigable Waters Protection Act; (r) what are the details of current timeline for the approval or rejection of the Marina application; (s) what are the details of the timeline for the completion of the VHA’s assessment of the Marina under its SMS; (t) who is bearing the cost of the VHA’s assessment of the Marina and Transport Canada’s; (u) what is the estimated cost of all activities related to Transport Canada and the VHA’s assessments of the Marina; (v) what are the details of the impact, including but not limited to safety, would the Marina have on marine and air traffic in Victoria harbour; and (w) how is Transport Canada including the impact of the Marina on non-motorized vessels such as kayaks and canoes in its review of the Marina proposal?

(Return tabled)

Question No. 183Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

3:15 p.m.

Liberal

Sean Casey Liberal Charlottetown, PE

With respect to Conditional Sentencing in Canada: (a) what is the number of conditional sentences issued since 2002 to present and for what offences under the criminal code; (b) what is the expected financial impact of the increased prison population, and longer prison terms expected as a result of the passage of Bill C-10 (An Act to enact the Justice for Victims of Terrorism Act and to amend the State Immunity Act, the Criminal Code, the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act, the Corrections and Conditional Release Act, the Youth Criminal Justice Act, the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and other Acts) and what financial impact will this have on the provinces; (c) what assessment, if any, has been conducted on the impact, including financial, of eliminating conditional sentences as provided in Bill C-10, on the administration of criminal justice by the provinces; (d) has the government received correspondence from stakeholder groups advocating for elimination of conditional sentencing, and if so, what are the details of this correspondence; (e) what, if any, advice was provided or sought from Corrections Canada and its unions with respect to eliminating conditional sentencing, and (f) what advice, briefing notes, and or assessments have been provided to the Minister and senior officials by non Canadian jurisdictions with respect to conditional sentencing and other crime related initiatives?

(Return tabled)

Question No. 184Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

3:15 p.m.

NDP

Dany Morin NDP Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, QC

What is the total amount of government funding since fiscal year 2004-2005, up to and including the current fiscal year, allocated within the constituency of Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, identifying each department or agency, initiative and amount?

(Return tabled)

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

3:15 p.m.

Conservative

Candice Bergen Conservative Portage—Lisgar, MB

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

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

3:15 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

Is that agreed?

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

3:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

The House resumed consideration of the motion.