Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was friend.

Last in Parliament October 2000, as NDP MP for Kamloops (B.C.)

Lost his last election, in 2000, with 28% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Business Of The House January 20th, 1994

Mr. Speaker, considering that next week we are going to be having these important debates on peacekeeping and cruise missile testing, I would like to ask the government House leader whether he would consult with his colleagues to see if there would be an opportunity to have a debate that would enable all members of Parliament to participate, which would mean not seeing the clock or extending the debate into the evening.

The Prime Minister said today that there would be a full debate where all members would have an opportunity to express their views if they so wish. I wonder if my hon. friend would discuss it with his colleagues.

The Late Hon. Steven Paproski January 20th, 1994

Mr. Speaker, I want to join with the others to say how shocked and saddened we all were when we heard on the news in December of Steve's passing.

Steve was a very different member of Parliament. One thing I remember about Steve was that whenever he was in the chair there always seemed to be a group of people around him chatting, coming and going and passing little stories back and forth. As my hon. friend here has indicated he was always filled with innocent little tidbits about his life.

I remember him telling me after seven elections how he was so successful with his campaign strategy. He said: "You have to spend a lot of time at home, Nelson. You have to get to know people. As an example, when I campaign I simply put a sign up on the highway that says `Steve's ahead'. I just stand on the road and everybody knows who Steve is". He just waved to his constituents as they went to work in the morning or returned at the end of the day.

That is the kind of person he was. Everybody knew who Steve Paproski was when he went into his constituency. In here we all felt very close to Steve Paproski. That was not a function of the fact that he was here for so many years. It was from the kind of person he was. It was his personality.

He loved his family. He loved his wife and his children and they loved him. He had a zest for life. Someone referred to his smile. He always seemed to be a very happy person. He always had a cheery comment to make and he was always willing to greet anyone in a very positive way. I think he was a great motivator for us even during those tense times in the House. When he was in the Chair he always had that comment that would calm everybody down with a little laugh.

We will miss Steve Paproski. Not only will those of us who knew him miss him, but Canada will miss him. He made a great contribution in so many ways. He was a new Canadian, elected seven times, served his country as we have heard in so many different capacities and he served this House and Canada so well.

Our hearts and our prayers go out today to his wife Betty and to his children.

Speech From The Throne January 20th, 1994

Madam Speaker, I congratulate my hon. friend on his maiden speech in the House. One of the main points he raised referred to the fact that we have to get our deficit under control.

One of the causes of our deficit problem is the amount of money the federal government fails to collect. It is an issue that more of us should get very serious about when we consider that a major preoccupation of many Canadians has now become purchasing contraband cigarettes and illegal liquor.

We found from the Auditor General's report yesterday that tens of thousands of businesses appear to be collecting the GST and not remitting it to the federal government. This obviously indicates a clear loss of faith in our tax system, to say nothing of the underground economy that probably includes almost everybody in one form or another through cash transactions or a barter system designed to avoid paying tax.

Does my friend share the view that one of the major steps to be taken in terms of reducing the deficit would be to close off some of the more obviously unfair tax exemptions that exist in our tax system to begin restoring faith in the system so that people will again be prepared to participate in the revenue collection of the country, knowing that our system is fair and more just?

Speech From The Throne January 20th, 1994

Madam Speaker, a point of order. I appreciate the point made by my hon. friend. If the concern is to allow as many members to speak to this important debate as possible, we can always extend the hours for people to do that.

My point was that the past speaker was a very important spokesperson for the Reform Party and an obvious person of whom to ask a number of questions.

Speech From The Throne January 20th, 1994

Madam Speaker, a point of order. I have listened very carefully to the very thoughtful comments of my colleague. Considering the importance and the nature of the tax system and the funding for small business, would the House permit two or three other questions in response to the hon. member's comments? Can we have unanimous consent to allow a few more questions to be put to the member?

Points Of Order January 19th, 1994

Mr. Speaker, I have to reply to my hon. friend who has just spoken. I think it is well recognized in the parliamentary system that question period provides the opportunity for those in opposition to ask questions of the government. My hon. friend has many opportunities in caucus meetings and in other areas to raise questions of importance on behalf of his constituents. This is really the only opportunity that we have as opposition members.

If my hon. friend looks at the record of today he will find that for the first time that I can recall the government had far more statements than it would normally receive.

Mr. Speaker, recognize when you make your deliberations that this is the only opportunity we have on a daily basis to ask questions of the members opposite.

Sitting Resumed January 17th, 1994

Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the free spirits in this corner I want to join with the others in pledging our support in the months ahead and wishing you well, particularly with the difficult decisions you will be asked to make from time to time.

Our congratulations go out to our colleagues who let their names stand in this surprisingly lengthy election procedure. We recognize that today is a new era in Canadian politics. This is exemplified by your election, Mr. Speaker, by the new government, a new House of Commons, and 205 new members. This is a great opportunity to change the way this House has done business.

On behalf of my colleagues, as I say the free spirits, we pledge our support to you and this House to make this place work as positively as possible.