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House of Commons Hansard #114 of the 41st Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was businesses.

Topics

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Colin Carrie ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, when we are talking about being missing on climate change, I think the Liberal leader should know I am in a difficult position right now. I agree with the Liberal leader's statement on the Liberal leadership, but not this leader's. Remember Mr. Ignatieff, who said we did not get it done? Under the Liberals' watch, greenhouse gases actually went up 130 megatonnes.

What we are doing is taking a sector-by-sector regulatory approach that is working, and that is leadership. We are the first major coal user to ban construction of traditional coal-fired electrical generating units. That is leadership. Yesterday, the Minister of the Environment announced three new regulatory initiatives that will lower air pollutants—

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

The hon. member for Papineau.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Liberal

Justin Trudeau Liberal Papineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, while the Prime Minister is missing from the UN climate summit, premiers Couillard, Clark and Prentice have supported an agreement between 73 countries and 1,000 companies to put a price on carbon pollution.

Will the Prime Minister finally admit that action must be taken to protect the environment and agree to be part of this agreement?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Colin Carrie ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

As I said, Mr. Speaker, we are taking a leadership role. We are taking solid action. All the Liberals did was talk about it. They signed on to Kyoto with absolutely no plan to get to where we need to be. Thanks to our actions, we have seen reductions in greenhouse gases since 2005, without imposing a job-killing carbon tax, which the Liberals support.

Our government's record is clear: per-capita carbon emissions have fallen to their lowest level since tracking began. That is a fact. In 2012, greenhouse gases were more than 5% lower than at 2005 levels, while the economy grew by more than 10% in the same period, and that—

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

The hon. member for Halifax.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Megan Leslie NDP Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, although he is in New York, today, the Prime Minister will not be attending a meeting of heads of state on climate change that is taking place there.

President Obama will be at the conference, as will Prime Minister Cameron. Today, the stage will be set for the Paris conference in 2015.

What will the Conservatives' contribution be, aside from a recycled announcement about measures that will not even take effect until 2017?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Colin Carrie ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, that is ridiculous. We are taking a leadership role. The Minister of the Environment is in New York City this week representing Canada at a number of climate change meetings.

Canada has and is taking significant efforts to curb climate change through a number of avenues, both domestic and international. Through our investments in clean energy and our sector-by-sector regulatory approach, we have seen our economy grow while emissions have gone down, unlike the Liberals and the NDP who want a job-killing carbon tax.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Megan Leslie NDP Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, the only thing the Conservatives have done for the environment is to recycle their answers.

While the Conservatives are missing the boat, the entire world is taking action. A coalition of 73 countries and 1,000 companies led by the president of the very radical World Bank is proposing to put a price on carbon.

Where is the Prime Minister? He is absent again.

Why are the Conservatives ignoring the business community, which is calling for action on climate change?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Colin Carrie ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, the NDP has been telling people for years that it has to be one or the other; in other words, it will have to shut down the economy in order to help the environment. The reason New Democrats are so mad is that we have proven their whole ideology wrong.

We, under the leadership of our Prime Minister and our environment minister, have seen the Canadian economy grow 10%, while greenhouse gases have actually decreased 5%. That is why we on this side are correct in our approach, and they on that side are stuck in an ideology that has been proven wrong.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Megan Leslie NDP Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, he should listen to the speakers of the UN, because the simple fact is this: By failing utterly and completely to come to grips with the climate crisis and make real reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, the Conservatives are setting Canada up to fail in the green energy economy of tomorrow.

Report after report, the latest on Monday from Clean Energy Canada, shows that Canada will be left behind in the clean energy revolution if the federal government does not wake up.

Why are the Conservatives asking Canadians to miss out on what could be a $3-trillion market?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Colin Carrie ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, as I was saying, our party is the only party that is committed to protecting the environment and keeping the Canadian economy strong. We believe we can do both at the same time.

This is why we have made significant investments to begin Canada's transition to a clean energy economy and advance our climate change objectives.

Canada already has one of the cleanest electricity systems in the world, and it is the world's third-largest producer of hydroelectricity. Over three-quarters of Canada's power comes from emission-free sources, and that is something Canadians need to know.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Megan Leslie NDP Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, let us be clear: this is the same government that has essentially given up on oil and gas regulations.

Canada is going to New York empty-handed in the global fight against climate change.

Our allies and our closest trading partner get the urgency, and they are taking real action to reduce emissions and boost clean energy.

What kind of climate impacts do we have to see here at home before the Conservatives get it?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Colin Carrie ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, our government gets it. We realize that we can both grow the economy and protect the environment at the same time.

Our government has taken important steps to help Canadians adapt to the changing climate. We have made significant investments to help Canadians understand and plan for climate impact, including Canada's north.

This helps our government to produce credible, science-based information to support planning and decision-making. This is something that New Democrats are against. All they want is a $20-billion carbon tax that will increase the price of everything.

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Robert Aubin NDP Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, when we discuss employment insurance, the Liberals and the Conservatives forget about the workers. They only care about the fund's surplus.

Over the years, they have managed to take no less than $57 billion from workers. Today, history is repeating itself with the $3.5-billion surplus forecast in the 2015 budget. The Conservatives plan to use this money to balance their budget while the Liberals would like to use it to fund a new but flawed tax credit.

When will the government stop using workers' money for purposes other than employment insurance?

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Eglinton—Lawrence Ontario

Conservative

Joe Oliver ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, we froze employment insurance contribution rates for three years. In 2014 alone, job creators and workers saved $660 million.

The new job credit will lower EI payroll taxes by 15%, saving small-business owners over $550 million.

Beginning in 2017, premiums will be based on a rate—

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

Order. The hon. member for Dartmouth—Cole Harbour.

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Robert Chisholm NDP Dartmouth—Cole Harbour, NS

Mr. Speaker, the Liberals and Conservatives teamed up to take more than $57 billion from the EI fund, money that was meant to pay for workers' benefits.

Atlantic Canada is still reeling from cuts to employment insurance, and access is at an all-time low.

Now they both have new plans to raid the fund for their own political advantage. This has to stop.

Will the minister support my bill to protect the EI account and finally put an end to Liberals and Conservatives stealing money from workers and employers?

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Eglinton—Lawrence Ontario

Conservative

Joe Oliver ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, both the NDP and the Liberals have supported a 45-day work year that would drastically increase premiums by 35%, at a cost of $4 billion.

Unlike the opposition, we will not attack job creators with massive tax cuts. In fact, we are introducing a credit for small businesses that would save them over half a billion dollars, which would generate employment, and which would be fair to the biggest creators of employment in this country.

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Chris Charlton NDP Hamilton Mountain, ON

Mr. Speaker, one moment the minister accuses the Liberals of raiding the EI fund, and the next he is doing the exact same thing, and neither plan helps the 60% of unemployed Canadians who cannot access EI at all.

Instead of raiding EI and shovelling that money to their corporate friends, why will the minister not admit it is not their money and allow the hundreds of thousands of unemployed Canadians to access the benefits they paid for?

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Eglinton—Lawrence Ontario

Conservative

Joe Oliver ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, our small business tax credit would lower EI payroll taxes by 15% and save businesses over $550 million.

The Canadian Federation of Independent Business says the credit will create 25,000 new jobs.

While we are lowering these payroll taxes for 90% of businesses, 780,000 of them, the Liberals and NDP are supporting a 45-day work year that would cost $40 billion.

We will not attack job creators with massive tax cuts.

EthicsOral Questions

September 23rd, 2014 / 2:35 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus NDP Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, the people who support a 45-day work year are all over in the Senate, speaking of which, the Mike Duffy trial has been announced. He is going up on 31 charges, including bribery.

Canadians are hoping they are going to finally find out how key people in the Prime Minister's Office were involved in setting up the bribe, but the only person charged is Mike Duffy so far.

To get back to the issue at hand, if the Prime Minister is asked to testify, will he hide behind parliamentary privilege, or will he help Canadians get to the bottom of this thing and come clean in court?

EthicsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Oak Ridges—Markham Ontario

Conservative

Paul Calandra ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and for Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister has already answered that question, and as we know, this case is before the courts, so we will let the courts make a decision on their own.

EthicsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

NDP

Alexandre Boulerice NDP Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Mr. Speaker, we now know the date of former senator Mike Duffy's trial. We hope that the trial, which will start in April, will finally shed some light for us on the role of the Prime Minister's Office in this scandal.

Rather curiously, at the heart of this fraud and corruption trial one man alone stands accused of receiving a cheque for $90,000. We wonder how it is that the man who signed the cheque, the Prime Minister's former chief of staff, can be as pure as the driven snow, just like all the others who orchestrated these shenanigans.

Is the Prime Minister going to comply with his fixed election date legislation so that, next year, voters can go to the polls fully informed?

EthicsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Oak Ridges—Markham Ontario

Conservative

Paul Calandra ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and for Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, as I just said, the case is before the courts. We will allow the courts to make a decision.

At the same time, of course, we know that the NDP itself has an outstanding bill of about $1.5 million it owes Canadian taxpayers for illegal use of taxpayer funds to support offices in provinces where it actually has no members of Parliament.

I hope the NDP will, for once, do the right thing—repay taxpayers the money it took from them—and not follow the example of the Liberals, who took $40 million and have never returned it to Canadian taxpayers.

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Chrystia Freeland Liberal Toronto Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, Canada lost a staggering 112,000 private sector jobs in August. Over the past year, our working-age population has grown by 375,000, but only 15,000 new full-time jobs were created.

The Conservatives' small business tax credit will make this dire situation worse by giving employers a perverse incentive to actually cut jobs. The Liberal plan would foster growth and help create as many as 176,000 new jobs.

Why would the government not adopt our plan?