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House of Commons Hansard #127 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was information.

Topics

SecuritiesOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, we have to consider whether the Canada Investment Act applies to this transaction.

We will be considering whether the Investment Canada Act relates to this transaction. There are meetings taking place today between the investors and Industry Canada officials. There will be other meetings over the course of the next several days. We will collect information that is relevant to the transaction and, in the first place, determine whether the Investment Canada Act applies to the transaction.

SecuritiesOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Daniel Paillé Bloc Hochelaga, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Finance's silence speaks volumes. I wonder if Canada will be the only G8 country to have a Minister of Finance and no stock exchange.

First it was Quebec, Manitoba and Alberta, and now British Columbia opposes this plan. In fact, only Ontario supports the plan because only Ontario will benefit from this plan to centralize the financial markets in Toronto.

When will the federal government drop its predatory plan?

SecuritiesOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, this matter concerns the Canada Investment Act. We have to consider all the issues and challenges. We also have to consider Canadian law. As the Minister of Industry, this issue is part of my portfolio. If there are any questions, I can repeat my answer.

Mortgage LoansOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Robert Carrier Bloc Alfred-Pellan, QC

Mr. Speaker, in the March 2010 budget, the Conservative government promised to regulate the mortgage penalties imposed on owners trying to renegotiate their loans to take advantage of low interest rates. Nothing has been done since that announcement was made, and mortgage rates are beginning to rise.

What is the government waiting for to limit the penalties imposed on advance payments? What is the government waiting for to call the banks to order?

Mortgage LoansOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Macleod Alberta

Conservative

Ted Menzies ConservativeMinister of State (Finance)

Mr. Speaker, our finance minister recognized there were concerns regarding individuals perhaps carrying too much debt so we changed the mortgage rules to ensure Canadians were protected. We are always concerned about too much credit card debt or people investing in a home they cannot afford and can buy it in another couple of years.

The mortgage rules are very well accepted by Canadians as well as the industry. We are putting those in place to protect Canadians.

Mortgage LoansOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Robert Carrier Bloc Alfred-Pellan, QC

Mr. Speaker, let me clarify my question.

The extreme position taken by the banks discourages owners from repaying their mortgages in advance, encourages debt and slows down the housing market. The federal government's legislative mess enables banks to impose outrageous mortgage penalties at their own whim and pleasure. Cleanup is needed in this area.

When will the minister stop protecting the big banks at consumers' expense?

Mortgage LoansOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Macleod Alberta

Conservative

Ted Menzies ConservativeMinister of State (Finance)

Mr. Speaker, I might remind the hon. member that Canada was one of the few countries that never put one penny of taxpayer dollars into our banking system during the serious recession that we just came through.

Our banks are in good condition. They are able to lend money to Canadians. Whether it is through mortgages or car loans, we encourage these banks to offer credit to Canadians but ensure they do it prudently.

Child CareOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Judy Foote Liberal Random—Burin—St. George's, NL

Mr. Speaker, struggling families are wondering how the minister can be so out of touch with reality. If she were in touch, the minister would know that 70% of working women with children two or younger need child care. Offering Canadians one-tenth the cost of monthly child care, and taxing it I might add, does not give Canadian families a choice in raising children.

When will the government get its priorities right and start offering real choices for families struggling to make ends meet?

Child CareOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, we brought in the universal child care benefit specifically to help working moms and dads take advantage of the child care of their choice for their children. We actually believe that parents know best how to look after their children. Whether it is institutional child care, daycare, whether it is mom or dad staying at home or granny or a trusted neighbour, we believe parents should have the choice, and we are supporting that with our universal child care benefit.

Child CareOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Judy Foote Liberal Random—Burin—St. George's, NL

Mr. Speaker, if the government actually took the time to listen to Canadians, it would know that the cost of having a child in child care is upwards of $8,000 per year. The government thinks that a so-called child care benefit that provides less than $1,000 a year after taxes gives parents some choices or options.

Why does the minister not admit the Conservatives have written off their promise to create 125,000 child care spaces because she and the Prime Minister are ideologically opposed to early learning and child care outside the home?

Child CareOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, our government recognizes and respects all forms of child care as long as it is the parents who get to make the choice for their children. That is what we believe in.

The Liberals have another approach. They believe that parents are not smart enough and do not care enough to look after their children. That is why they said that the parents would spend the money on beer and popcorn. That is why they said that the parents may have the money, but they use it for their own purposes.

Then the leader of the Liberals said he plans to scrap the UCCB, calling it, “wasteful and a terrible use of public funds”.

Social HousingOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Raymonde Folco Liberal Laval—Les Îles, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives have granted a seven-month extension of the $12 billion infrastructure program, yet they are refusing to extend the $400 million social housing program. Over half of those funds are needed for housing on first nations reserves. Despite two questions placed on the order paper, the minister is refusing to provide us with the list of approved social housing projects.

So I ask the minister again here today: when will she provide this information to Canadians?

Social HousingOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, as just one part of our economic action plan, we invested $2 billion in the construction and renovation of affordable housing for aboriginal peoples, as well as for seniors and persons with disabilities. According to the rules, if organizations have submitted an application to their province, if the province approves the project and construction begins by March 31 of this year, they will receive funding.

Social HousingOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Raymonde Folco Liberal Laval—Les Îles, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question was “when”, and I did not hear a clear answer.

The government is willing to spend $6 billion a year on corporate tax cuts and $16 billion on fighter jets, but it cut $400 million for social housing when the seven month extension is given for just about every other project.

Once again, the biggest losers are the Canadians who are suffering the most. Has the minister never seen housing conditions on reserves? Has she no shame?

Social HousingOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, has the member an earpiece that actually works, because I just explained it.

If an organization has made a request, an application to their province and if their province has approved, the construction begins by March 31 of this year, or within three months of that, actually, then the groups will receive the funding to help these projects.

These are projects put in place to create jobs under our economic action plan and they provide a long-lasting benefit for our aboriginals, for our seniors and for handicapped people.

Canadian Wheat BoardOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

Kevin Sorenson Conservative Crowfoot, AB

Mr. Speaker, the Canadian Wheat Board is entering into another scheme to waste western Canadian grain growers' money.

The Wheat Board is continuously protected by the coalition and now seems to be suffering from Liberal envy. It wants to become a shipping magnate, like failed former Liberal Prime Minister Paul Martin. Its plan? Spend $65 million, which will come out of farmers' pool returns, farmers' money, to buy a shipping company.

Why is the Wheat Board squandering farmers' money when farmers should have the freedom to opt out of this wasteful monopoly?

Canadian Wheat BoardOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Battlefords—Lloydminster Saskatchewan

Conservative

Gerry Ritz ConservativeMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, the member for Crowfoot is correct. This latest scheme by the Wheat Board would put a minimum of $65 million of farmers' own money at risk and will use farmers' pool accounts as a slush fund. It is unfortunate.

Farmers have not been consulted on this latest decision. I have constantly told the Wheat Board that farmers' money in the pool accounts is off limits to it. It should not be misappropriated like this.

The Wheat Board must focus on getting a higher return for farmers, not go out and buy votes like this. That is why we continue to support an open market for Canadian farmers coast to coast to coast, and we will continue to do that.

The EconomyOral Questions

February 9th, 2011 / 2:50 p.m.

NDP

Irene Mathyssen NDP London—Fanshawe, ON

Mr. Speaker, two weeks ago the Minister of Justice was all smiles when he came to a London manufacturing plant for a media event promoting corporate tax cuts.

Employees at IPEX are not smiling. Workers who had been used as a backdrop for the minister's photo op received layoff notices yesterday.

Over the last five years London has lost over 15,000 good paying manufacturing jobs.

When will the government start caring about working families instead of its reckless corporate tax cuts?

The EconomyOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, through budget 2010 and through the economic action plan, this government has been focused on jobs, including manufacturing jobs.

I might add that in the province of Ontario, for instance, there has been a great increase in manufacturing capacity, capability and manufacturing jobs. That is because we have been working on those things. That is because it is having an impact on the economy.

We are investing in innovation. We are investing in creativity. We are investing in the people who make manufacturing strong, and we will continue to do so.

The EconomyOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair NDP Outremont, QC

Mr. Speaker, the reality is that 600,000 manufacturing jobs have been lost since 2000. A tax break does not help a manufacturer that is not making any profit, since it has no income tax to pay. That measure helps only the banks, which are making record profits and not creating any jobs, while the manufacturing sector has lost hundreds of thousands of jobs.

When will the Conservatives understand that they are destabilizing the balanced economy that Canadians have been working hard to build since the second world war? Instead of helping those who do not need any help, like the banks, why not target sectors that are productive, innovative and creating real jobs for the future?

The EconomyOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, our record is clear. For instance, in January, GM announced over 1,000 new jobs in plants across Ontario. Also in January, CS Wind announced that it would be locating its new wind tower plant at the Valiant plant in Windsor, thereby creating 300 jobs, for instance. New jobs have also been created in Quebec.

That is our record. The plan is working. Every time the NDP had a chance to support our plan in this Parliament, that party voted no.

Government AppointmentsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Bloc Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, since 2006, the Conservative government has made hundreds of partisan appointments to the boards of directors of government agencies and crown corporations, not to mention the appointments of senators and even some judges, all to ensure that these agencies are in line with the Conservatives' ideology.

Will the Prime Minister admit that all these partisan appointments are part of a strategy to compensate the government's cronies and to ensure that these agencies become Conservative government mouthpieces?

Government AppointmentsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, our government has one principal factor that we take into account when making government appointments, which is that the individuals are qualified for the appointments to which they are being appointed.

No government has done more to advance non-partisan appointments. No government has done more to ensure that people are qualified for the government appointments that we make. This government should be commended for those actions.

Government AppointmentsOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Bloc Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, their only qualification is being close to the Conservatives or being Conservatives themselves.

These attempts at control through partisan appointments are even more worrying because a number of Supreme Court judges will soon be stepping down. A good way of avoiding partisan appointments is to agree to Quebec's demand that the government choose judges to represent Quebec based on a short list of candidates chosen by Quebec.

Will the Prime Minister agree to this longstanding demand from Quebec?

Government AppointmentsOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, all of the individuals we have appointed to the bench go through a process by which they are evaluated. All of the individuals we have put on the bench have met those qualifications.

They are an outstanding group of individuals, prepared to serve their Queen and their country, and they should have the support of the hon. member and his party.