This week, I changed much of the tech behind this site. If you see anything that looks like a bug, please let me know!

House of Commons Hansard #146 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was c-12.

Topics

EthicsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Thornhill Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent ConservativeMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, Canadians count on our government to do the right thing. When allegations about Bruce Carson came to light, we did the right thing and referred the matter to the Lobbying Commissioner, the Ethics Commissioner and the RCMP.

I did meet with the individual once on February 7 to discuss the environment and the energy sector in his then capacity as the head of the Canada School of Energy and Environment. However, he did raise first nations water issues but, as these issues do not fall within the jurisdiction of Environment Canada, that conversation ended there.

EthicsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Raymonde Folco Liberal Laval—Les Îles, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am wondering if the member also met with the RCMP.

Mr. Carson acted as a witness to a contract stipulating that 20% of the sales from water-filtration systems in cultural communities would be paid to his fiancée. She stood to gain up to $80 million from the contract. Oddly enough, Mr. Carson allegedly met with his Conservative minister friends to discuss access to clean drinking water in aboriginal communities.

Did the Conservatives fill Ms. McPherson's hope chest at the expense of the first nations?

EthicsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, there is no indication of one single dollar being paid to the individual. If the member opposite has any evidence to suggest that was the case, she should table it before this House.

Champlain BridgeOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Bloc

Josée Beaudin Bloc Saint-Lambert, QC

Mr. Speaker, the business community in Montreal and on the south shore is devastated at the idea of the Champlain Bridge being out of service for safety reasons. Some $2 billion worth of goods cross that bridge every year and 165,000 vehicles cross it every day. If the bridge had to close, the situation would be catastrophic, according to representatives of the chambers of commerce.

Does the government intend to listen to the engineers, the business community and the commuters who are calling for a new bridge?

Champlain BridgeOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, that is why we have invested a great deal of money in that corridor. It is very important for Montreal and for the Canadian corridor. I am also pleased to inform the hon. member that we tabled a letter in this House yesterday afternoon confirming that the Champlain Bridge is safe.

In fact, in a personal conversation I had a month ago with both the CEO and the engineers for the bridge, they said that the bridge was safe and that it would be that way for the next 10 years.

Champlain BridgeOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Thierry St-Cyr Bloc Jeanne-Le Ber, QC

Mr. Speaker, an announcement of a joint project to replace the Champlain Bridge needs to be made immediately. When it came to the Windsor bridge and ensuring the flow of trade between Ontario and the United States, the government found the necessary money. However, when it comes to replacing the busiest bridge in Canada, which happens to be in Quebec, the minister is unable to find the necessary funding. It is outrageous.

How does the government explain treating Quebec so unfairly?

Champlain BridgeOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, just to remind the member, when I was in Montreal holding a stakeholders' meeting about a month or so ago, the people in Montreal said, that 25% of all the goods that come out of Montreal go across the Windsor Bridge. They are intensely interested in an additional bridge at the Windsor crossing.

However, to get back to the Champlain Bridge, we are awaiting the final report that will make recommendations on what should happen to the Champlain Bridge. We look forward to receiving the final recommendations. We are working with the Quebec government and stakeholders to ensure the bridge is safe in the meantime and will be replaced in the long term.

Canada--U.S. BorderOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Claude DeBellefeuille Bloc Beauharnois—Salaberry, QC

Mr. Speaker, when the time comes to help Ontario, they will find any excuse. In the name of keeping trade with the United States flowing smoothly, the Conservatives are putting $5.5 billion into projects in the Windsor-Detroit corridor. Yet in Quebec, services at three border crossings will be reduced and two crossings will be shut down. That is the case with the Franklin Centre crossing in my riding.

Does the minister realize that this nickel-and-diming will jeopardize public safety and the economy in our regions?

Canada--U.S. BorderOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Provencher Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, let us look at the facts. This decision was made with local CBSA officials who have knowledge and understanding of the needs of the region. For example, Jamieson Line, Quebec, sees an average of 12 travellers a day and no commercial vehicles. There is a port of entry 10 kilometres away that is open 24/7.

Franklin Centre in Quebec also sees an average of 56 travellers a day, 3 commercial vehicles and there is a 24/7 port of entry 16 kilometres away.

We look at all of these issues to ensure that the best decision is made for the taxpayer.

Canada--U.S. BorderOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Christian Ouellet Bloc Brome—Missisquoi, QC

Mr. Speaker, the unilateral decision by the Canada Border Services Agency to cut the business hours at the crossings in Morses Line, East Pinnacle and Glen Sutton will have an impact on the economy in the Eastern Townships. We are particularly concerned that this decision could jeopardize the development of tourism. The associations that are trying to develop cycle-touring are worried that tourists will choose other destinations.

Does the government realize that this nickel-and-diming will jeopardize the economic development of our region?

Canada--U.S. BorderOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Provencher Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, these decisions are made with local CBSA officials who have knowledge and understanding of the needs of the region. They are done in consultation.

The Bloc should be honest with Canadians. There will not be any job related losses from this decision nor any danger to public safety. In fact, our government has increased front line border guards by 26.5%

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Mark Holland Liberal Ajax—Pickering, ON

Mr. Speaker, for years the government has hidden the cost of its megaprison agenda, worked to hide the tens of billions it would cost and the fact that it has been a disaster everywhere it has been tried.

Now the Speaker has ruled and a committee of Parliament has found the government in contempt and the Parliamentary Budget Officer confirms that the Conservatives are still hiding nearly 60% of the information.

When we have no truth, we have no democracy. When the budget is tabled today, very simply, how could Canadians trust a single word the government says?

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Provencher Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, what I find interesting is that rather than standing up for victims, the member for Ajax—Pickering is getting ready for an unnecessary and opportunistic election.

He did not vote in the interests of his constituents when he voted to let drug dealers get out of jail after serving one-sixth of their sentence. He voted to put white collar criminals back in the comfort of their offices and even voted to continue giving pardons to those who commit sexual offences against children.

Why does he never stand up for victims?

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Mark Holland Liberal Ajax—Pickering, ON

Mr. Speaker, if the minister wants to keep pushing fear and fiction, he should go write Stephen King novels.

Here is the fact. The Conservatives have been hiding information from this House. The Parliamentary Budget Officer said that almost 60% of the information on how much their agenda costs is hidden.

This is about how much debt would be put on the shoulders of Canadian families. This is about how much money would be taken from health care and education. This is about the Prime Minister who has broken his word to be transparent.

Where are the numbers? Where are the facts? Where is the information?

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Provencher Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, that is an individual who consistently stands up for prisoners rather than victims. The last time he toured a prison, he came out and said that the morale among prisoners was bad. That is his focus.

Our government's focus is on protecting ordinary Canadians and we are prepared to pay the cost in order to ensure that the hon. member's community is safe and that his streets are safe, even if he does not want it.

National DefenceOral Questions

March 22nd, 2011 / 2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Dominic LeBlanc Liberal Beauséjour, NB

Mr. Speaker, anyone who is independent of the government and who looks at the procurement process for the F-35s will see the many problems: cost overruns and delay after delay.

The minister initially told us that the aircraft would cost only $9 billion, then it was $16 billion. Now the Parliamentary Budget Officer is saying they will cost $30 billion.

When will the minister admit this is costing Canadians too much money? When will he stand up and defend the men, women and children who will pay for this irresponsible process?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, the non-partisan, professional DND procurement experts stand by their cost projections. In fact, those costs are based on actual detailed estimates that were calculated from a multinational joint strike fighter program. They were not based on extrapolations that were made from drawing upon historical data of other aircraft from 50 years ago. They were not based on a flawed calculation that included the weight of the aircraft. They did not project out 30 years. They went with the 20 year standard.

I wish the hon. member would get his facts straight.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Dominic LeBlanc Liberal Beauséjour, NB

Mr. Speaker, the problem is last week the United States Pentagon joined Mr. Page in saying that the costs of the F-35 are “simply unacceptable in this fiscal environment”. Delays keep getting longer. Costs keep going up. Yet the minister gets up over and over again with the same story. Canadians are not buying it.

When will the Conservatives finally scrap this reckless procurement process and save taxpayers billions of dollars by having a real competition in Canada to get the air force the plane it needs at the best value for taxpayers?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, that is exactly what we are doing.

The reality is there was a competition, there was a process. Do members know how we know this? We know this because the party of the member opposite started the process.

There was a time not that long ago, in September 2010, when the member opposite said that the Liberal Party wanted to replace the CF-18 with the next generation fighter aircraft. There is only one next generation fighter aircraft. That was confirmed by the Parliamentary Budget Officer. That member used to be the biggest cheerleader for that plane.

The BudgetOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Bruce Stanton Conservative Simcoe North, ON

Mr. Speaker, I wonder if the government House leader could please tell the House if any member of the ministry is selling access to Canadians in return for a secret briefing on the budget that will be tabled in the House later this day?

The BudgetOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, the government would never do that.

The Minister of Finance, the Prime Minister and members of this government caucus have fanned out right across the country to listen to Canadians' views on the budget.

But look at what the Liberal Party is doing. It is now charging people to “ensure your opinion is represented in the Liberal caucus room. All you have to do is make a donation to the Liberal Party of Canada”. I have here an email and it is very simple: “Taking part is simple. Just make a donation of as little as $10 and they can ensure your views are heard in the Liberal caucus”.

Canadians reject this pay to play attitude from the Liberal Party and call on them to cancel this call this afternoon.

The BudgetOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

The BudgetOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order. The hon. member for Edmonton--Strathcona.

EthicsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Linda Duncan NDP Edmonton Strathcona, AB

Mr. Speaker, at the climate change conference in Cancun, Canada committed to develop a national low carbon, clean energy strategy for Canada.

Bruce Carson has been the lead on a national strategy for energy and for oil sands expansion. He met with the previous and current environment ministers responsible for climate change and regulating the oil sands. The Prime Minister has forbidden further communications with Mr. Carson.

Will the government also be cutting the generous federal grants to the organizations led by Mr. Carson?

EthicsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, when information was brought to our attention in this regard we did the responsible thing and forwarded it to the relevant authorities. We will let them conduct an investigation. We sent it to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the Ethics Commissioner and the Commissioner of Lobbying. These are the independent officers who can look into this matter.

Anyone who breaks this very important law should face the full force of the law.