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Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was petitions.

Last in Parliament April 1997, as Liberal MP for Beauséjour (New Brunswick)

Won his last election, in 1993, with 76% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Business Of The House April 25th, 1996

Mr. Speaker, I confirm that Monday shall be an allotted day.

Department Of Human Resources Development Act April 23rd, 1996

Mr. Speaker, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans administers a piece of legislation, the Fisheries Act, which contains very broad prohibitions against the destruction of fish and their habitat. In simple terms, no one can modify a fish habitat without being authorized to do so by the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, which, by the way, is the only one empowered to grant such authorizations.

Many human activities can alter fish habitat, from the construction of a culvert to the damming of large rivers to generate electricity.

Reviewing development proposals to determine their potential impact on fish habitat is a key component of DFO's habitat management program. Like all other DFO activities, this program is being assessed as part of the program review.

In other words, the department asked itself if maintaining this function was justified. The provinces are also reviewing a number of these development proposals according to their own legislation on the environment as well as on land and water use.

The Department of Fisheries and Oceans wondered whether its was appropriate for two levels of government to be involved in projects of such little significance as building a drainage trench or if efforts should not be made instead to identify any potential areas of duplication and overlap with a view to eliminating them. I think that the choice was obvious.

As the hon. member knows, this government's intention to take a more efficient approach to freshwater fish habitat management in closer partnership with the provinces was clearly stated in the speech from the throne. The challenge now facing all levels of government will be to identify those sectors where activities can be streamlined while at the same time ensuring the level of protection that we all want for the environment in general and fisheries resources in particular.

To conclude, I can assure the hon. member that the government attaches and will continue to attach great importance to the protection of fish habitat and to the integrity of the environmental assessment process.

Fisheries March 29th, 1996

Mr. Speaker, if my hon. colleague will listen to the announcement that will be made later this day from the west coast, I am sure he will find occasion to applaud the minister's action. This announcement will go a long way in meeting the expectations of the industry on the west coast.

Fisheries March 29th, 1996

Mr. Speaker, I certainly do not accept the premise of the member's question.

The minister is on the west coast and will be making an announcement later today. This follows a long series of consultation with the industry and will also go a long way to meeting recommendations that were made by people who participated in the round table.

I would have thought the member would be out there today to applaud what the minister will be announcing. The measures will be in the direction which will certainly contribute to the revitalization of the salmon industry in B.C.

Department Of Public Works And Government Services Act March 26th, 1996

Mr. Speaker, I did hear you ask if there was a debate, but I think that members thought that the House was ready for the question. We said "question". You put the question and we voted on it.

I am sorry. I do not want people to think that members from this side of the House refused to discuss the bill. I believe you were very clear. You asked if we wanted to debate the bill and no one got up. Consequently, we voted on it.

Canada Labour Code March 26th, 1996

moved that the bill be read the third time and passed.

Canada Labour Code March 26th, 1996

moved that the bill be concurred in.

North American Aerospacedefence Command March 11th, 1996

Madam Speaker, I want to reassure the hon. member for Frontenac and say that Canada will not give up anything. Throughout the panel's proceedings, Canada will strongly defend its right to impose customs duties on dairy products, poultry and other American commodities.

The government worked in close co-operation with industry and provincial officials to prepare Canada's case, before it is heard by NAFTA's dispute settlement panel.

Canada and the United States have now submitted their briefs to the panel. In its document, the United States claims that Canada did not comply with its commitment, under NAFTA, not to increase its customs duties, adding that under the same agreement Canada must eliminate all such duties by 1998.

That position does not take into account-and I say it loud and clear-the fact that both the FTA and NAFTA clearly state that Canada retains the rights granted to it under GATT regarding agricultural commodities subject to a supply management system, including the right to apply WTO's tariff provisions to agricultural commodities of American origin.

In its brief to the panel, Canada insists that the tariff system it uses regarding these commodities is in full compliance with its international trade obligations under NAFTA and the WTO. When Canada agreed to have tariff provisions apply to Article XI, in support of products subject to the supply management system, it had obtained legal opinions expressly confirming the validity of its right, under GATT, the WTO and NAFTA, to impose resulting tariff equivalents to US imports.

We are convinced that our legal opinions are valid and we will vigorously defend the rights of Canadian producers before NAFTA's panel. We will not concede anything.

The Budget March 7th, 1996

Mr. Speaker, I totally disagree with the member when he talks about a double standard.

The industry was consulted. Maybe the producers to whom he talked yesterday were not aware of that or were not consulted, but the fact remains that the key stakeholders in this industry were consulted and they chose a phasing out of the subsidy rather than a buy out over a period of one or two years.

They thought it was the best way to proceed in order to avoid causing too big a change over a short period. We will phase out the subsidy over five years, just as recommended by these people.

The Budget March 7th, 1996

Mr. Speaker, my colleague from Frontenac is comparing two programs that are totally different. I agree with him that the dairy subsidy is very important to milk producers.

Members will recall that, last year, the Minister of Finance had announced two successive reductions of 15 per cent a year and had said that the industry would be consulted to determine what would happen to the remainder of the subsidy. That is exactly what was done. There were consultations by both the parliamentary secretary and the minister. Stakeholders in the industry chose the process that we announced yesterday, a phasing out of the subsidy over five years, because it would have a lesser impact on the market.

People in this industry agree with this measure. We consulted them and we acted according to the result of these consultations.