House of Commons Hansard #170 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was budget.

Topics

The EnvironmentOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Nepean—Carleton Ontario

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I encourage the NDP to read the Navigable Waters Protection Act. If they read the act, they would understand that its purpose is to protect navigation. It ensures that boats and bridges can co-exist on shared waterways. That is the reason for the act, and we are going to improve it.

TransportOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

NDP

Dennis Bevington NDP Western Arctic, NT

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives will not have to rewrite history on this question because it is about navigation.

On Monday, the premier of the Northwest Territories stated that his government was not consulted before the Minister of Transport removed the protections from most of the waterways in the north. If the minister had been consulted, he would have been told that removing the protection from Hay River would also have meant removing protection from the largest port facility in Canada's north.

Since the minister could not be bothered to consult with other Canadian governments, just who did he consult with before acting in such a ham-fisted manner?

TransportOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Charleswood—St. James—Assiniboia Manitoba

Conservative

Steven Fletcher ConservativeMinister of State (Transport)

Mr. Speaker, the navigable waterways act is about navigation. It has always been about navigation.

Let me share with the member what other people have had to say. The Federation of Canadian Municipalities said:

The changes announced today will allow local governments to spend less time processing paperwork for small, low-risk public works projects by removing redundancies, red tape and project delays that result in higher costs for property tax payers.

The Construction Association commented on this. If had time, I could read them. The Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities had a fantastic quote. The former premier of B.C., Gordon Campbell, is really thrilled about—

TransportOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Conservative

The Acting Speaker Conservative Barry Devolin

The hon. member for Niagara West—Glanbrook.

Regional DevelopmentOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Conservative

Dean Allison Conservative Niagara West—Glanbrook, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Arctic Council is the leading intergovernmental forum in which Canada advances its Arctic foreign policy and promotes national interests. In May 2013, Canada will take over chairmanship of the Arctic Council. Because the Arctic is fundamental to Canada's national identity, it will be important for northerners to have a voice in studying our Arctic Council priorities.

Could the minister please update the House on how our Conservative government is engaging northerners on this key initiative?

Regional DevelopmentOral Questions

October 26th, 2012 / 11:55 a.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq ConservativeMinister of Health and Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

Mr. Speaker, as a proud northerner, I am happy to be part of a government that is committed to helping the north reach its true and prosperous potential. Starting tomorrow, in my home territory of Nunavut, I will be hosting a series of meetings with key northern stakeholders to get their views on Canada's upcoming Arctic Council chairmanship.

Our government will continue to work with northerners to bring a strong, united voice for Canada to the international scene.

Status of WomenOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Liberal

Hedy Fry Liberal Vancouver Centre, BC

Mr. Speaker, the World Economic Forum reports that Canada dropped seven points and out of the top 20 nations in gender equality. Women are under-represented in the House and on corporate boards, and too many still make less than their male counterparts for work of equal value.

It does not help when the minister responsible for gender equality votes to reopen the abortion debate. Is the minister not ashamed that Canada's position has dropped under her watch to the point where we are behind Nicaragua when it comes to gender equality?

Status of WomenOral Questions

Noon

London North Centre Ontario

Conservative

Susan Truppe ConservativeParliamentary Secretary for Status of Women

Mr. Speaker, I would bring to the hon. member's attention another recent report by TrustLaw ranking Canada as the best G20 country in the world in which to be a woman.

What the member opposite fails to recognize is that Canada's overall score in the World Economic Forum report has gone up since our government took office. I call on the member opposite to join us in celebrating our successes and working hard to promote women's equality in Canada and around the world.

Canada Revenue AgencyOral Questions

Noon

NDP

Robert Aubin NDP Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, we have more bad news that has the Conservative government written all over it.

At the CRA tax centre in Shawinigan, 33 people will lose their jobs and another 22 will lose their jobs at the Jonquière centre. Clearly, this will be a major blow to the local economies of both cities. And to add insult to injury, the targeted positions have to do with archiving personal and corporate income tax returns. This news does not bode well for the privacy of Canadians.

Do the Conservatives plan to entrust the archiving of Canadians' tax returns to private industry?

Canada Revenue AgencyOral Questions

Noon

Kamloops—Thompson—Cariboo B.C.

Conservative

Cathy McLeod ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, our government's top priority is the economy, and that includes making sure that we spend our Canadian taxpayer dollars wisely.

This change will ensure the privacy and the security of taxpayers' records, and will do so at a lower cost. We must ensure taxpayers' money is spent where it will do the most good as more Canadians move to our electronic services.

Our government is committed to supporting CRA and offering Canadians a high-level of service while ensuring the integrity of the tax system.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

Noon

Conservative

Costas Menegakis Conservative Richmond Hill, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have heard many heartbreaking stories from Canadians across the country who have been the victims of marriage fraud. They have told me that they clearly want us to put a stop to those who lie and cheat just to jump the immigration queue. This is not only emotional. The financial consequences faced by the victims can be very devastating.

Can the hard-working Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration please update the House on the actions our government is taking to put a stop to these scams?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

Noon

St. Catharines Ontario

Conservative

Rick Dykstra ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the member for Richmond Hill for his tremendous contribution to the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration.

Starting today, newly sponsored spouses will have to live with their sponsor for two years or they could lose their status in Canada. This will put a stop to fraudsters leaving their Canadian spouse the moment they receive permanent residence status, leaving them heartbroken and many times in severe financial debt.

One does not just have to ask this side of the House. This has been praised by Canadians Against Immigration Fraud and the Canadian Marriage Fraud Victims' Society.

Regional DevelopmentOral Questions

Noon

NDP

Claude Gravelle NDP Nickel Belt, ON

Mr. Speaker, we are all glad the federal government is recognizing the importance of infrastructure investment for snowmobilers in Quebec.

I am sure the minister knows that over 168,000 Ontarians are members of a snowmobile club, generating an estimated $1.2 billion. Snowmobiling is important to northern Ontario.

Will the Conservatives ensure the good people of northern Ontario receive their fair share of snowmobile funding?

Regional DevelopmentOral Questions

Noon

Kenora Ontario

Conservative

Greg Rickford ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development

Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member from northern Ontario for talking about just one of a number of passions that we have in northern Ontario.

I know one thing we do not have a passion for, and that is to have a $21.5 billion carbon tax that will increase our cost of living, stifle small business and put major projects, whether it is snowmobile trails or the Ring of Fire, simply out of reach.

Foreign InvestmentOral Questions

Noon

Green

Elizabeth May Green Saanich—Gulf Islands, BC

Mr. Speaker, back in 2010, the Prime Minister said this:

—in future, should provincial actions cause significant legal obligations for [Canada], the government of Canada will create a mechanism so that it can reclaim monies lost through international trade processes.

Now that Canada is opening up a whole new area of potential claims against Canada from the Canada-China investment treaty, I would like to be updated on what the Prime Minister plans to do to claim millions back lost in arbitrations with China?

Foreign InvestmentOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I thank the leader of the Green Party for her question on this issue. It is good to see recognition that the opportunity provided by this agreement is to protect Canadian investors.

Interestingly, Liberal Party members have been asking questions about this after not having done anything to protect investors and businesses in China for some 13 years. In contrast to their record, we now have an agreement in place that will protect Canadian investors, protecting their efforts to do business in China to create success, economic growth, prosperity and jobs back here at home.

Foreign InvestmentOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

Green

Elizabeth May Green Saanich—Gulf Islands, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am afraid the hon. House leader missed the point of my question. I accept that Canadian businesses operating in China are largely better off, but the public interest in Canada, indeed decisions at the municipal level, provincial level and federal level can be challenged by China if China finds them arbitrary.

That is why the city of Port Alberni today wrote the Prime Minister to ask if the agreement could be stopped. The Prime Minister plans to go after the provinces to claw back millions that should never be open to claims by the state-owned enterprises of China.

Foreign InvestmentOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, the leader of the Green Party, in quoting the Prime Minister, is referring to comments that arise out of World Trade Organization matters, not out of this foreign investment protection agreement. Chinese investors in Canada for years have been able to rely on the Canadian rule of law. Now, finally, Canadians will be able to rely on this agreement to protect their investments, and that is the reason we moved forward with this, to protect Canadians and their investments.

Foreign InvestmentOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

Conservative

The Acting Speaker Conservative Barry Devolin

That concludes question period for today.

The hon. member for Saanich—Gulf Islands is rising on a point of order.

Oral QuestionsPoints of OrderOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

Green

Elizabeth May Green Saanich—Gulf Islands, BC

Mr. Speaker, the hon. House leader misspoke. I think the record should be corrected.

The matter on which the Prime Minister spoke was a chapter 11 NAFTA suit, nothing whatsoever to do with the World Trade Organization, exactly like this agreement.

Oral QuestionsPoints of OrderOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

Conservative

The Acting Speaker Conservative Barry Devolin

Order, please. I believe this is a point of debate rather than a point of order.

Oral QuestionsPoints of OrderOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

NDP

Malcolm Allen NDP Welland, ON

Mr. Speaker, I would like to seek unanimous consent to move the following motion: that notwithstanding any standing order or usual practice of the House, clauses 351 to 410 related to changes to the Canada Grain Act be removed from Bill C-45, A second act to implement certain provisions of the budget tabled in Parliament on March 29, 2012 and other measures, and do compose Bill C-47; that Bill C-47 be entitled an act to amend the Canada Grain Act; that Bill C-47 be deemed read a first time and be printed; that the order for second reading of said bill provide for the referral to the Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-Food; that Bill C-45 retain the status on the order paper that it had prior to the adoption of this order; that Bill C-45 be reprinted, as amended; and that the law clerk and parliamentary counsel be authorized to make any technical changes or corrections as may be necessary to give effect to this motion.

I am proposing this particular motion so that we can not only study an act to change the Grain Act but we will vote on it as a separate entity, unlike what the government did with the Canadian Wheat Board Act, where it denied farmers the ability to vote on whether they wished to keep it or not. We would indeed be then voting on behalf of farmers on the Grain Act and the Grain Act alone, so they would know what we were doing, who opposed them and who actually stood for them.

Oral QuestionsPoints of OrderOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

Conservative

The Acting Speaker Conservative Barry Devolin

Does the hon. member from Welland have unanimous consent?

Oral QuestionsPoints of OrderOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

No.

Rights of the UnbornPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:05 p.m.

Conservative

Dick Harris Conservative Cariboo—Prince George, BC

Mr. Speaker, I have several hundred names from central British Columbia, including my riding, where the petitioners call on the House of Commons in Parliament assembled to confirm that every human being is recognized by Canadian law as human by amending section 223 of our Criminal Code in such a way as to reflect 21st century medical evidence.