House of Commons photo

Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was liberal.

Last in Parliament October 2015, as Conservative MP for Cariboo—Prince George (B.C.)

Won his last election, in 2011, with 56% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Business of Supply September 23rd, 2014

Mr. Speaker, in some 20 years that I have been in the House, I have heard one message from small businesses all across this country, and that is that they consider the EI premiums a payroll tax. We promised them at every step that we would seek ways to reduce that payroll tax, the EI premiums, and we have done that.

We have received high praise from coast to coast to coast from small business owners thanking us and saying we have looked after their thresholds for business tax, we have lowered their business rate to 11% from 15%, and we have raised the capital gains threshold, and they thank us for the stable economy that we have been able to keep through this recession, when other nations were suffering in pretty desperate times.

They are thanking us for this latest move. We have reduced payroll taxes and we have given them a plan to lower their payroll taxes. That is what they have been looking for, and there are going to be new jobs as a result.

Business of Supply September 23rd, 2014

Mr. Speaker, unlike the Liberals, who have come up with some pretty outlandish schemes to say they support business, we have a small business jobs plan that was created with the help of small business organizations. We have received great support from them. We have heard great comments that this is what small business was looking for.

We have proved that when a government can lower taxes to small business, it creates more jobs and benefits the economy. We do not have to take any lessons from the Liberal Party to understand what to do to help small business.

Business of Supply September 23rd, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I am going to be splitting my time with my learned colleague from Elmwood—Transcona.

I am pleased to address this motion raised by my Liberal colleague across the way. I want to focus my time on the subject of tax relief and other support for small businesses. I do so because long before our government introduced the small business job credit, we continually acted to leave more money in the pockets of our nation's businesses and with the Canadians who work for them.

As the member opposite is aware, our government has introduced 180 tax relief measures to keep our economy strong and growing. We have been committed to using Canadians' tax dollars in the most prudent and effective way possible. Let us talk about broad-based tax relief for a moment.

This responsible and disciplined use of taxpayers' hard-earned dollars is expected to get us back to a balanced budget in 2015. That is a remarkable achievement, given what we were confronted with just a few short years ago. Perhaps the only person in Canada who would disagree with that would be the leader of the Liberal Party. He criticized our action to balance the budget because, according to him, a balanced budget happens all by itself. That is some business sense.

Thankfully, our government understands the importance of sound economic management. As most members know, when disaster struck the world economy, we took immediate and precise action. In the middle of the world's worst global recession since the Great Depression, we introduced the economic action plan to protect Canadian business and protect Canadian jobs. In fact, even before the global crisis, our government was focused directly on the economic fundamentals, in particular on paying down debt and delivering broad-based tax relief to Canadian job creators and families alike.

As a result of our low-tax plan, the average family of four is saving about $3,400 a year in taxes in the year 2014. We also cut the GST from 7% to 5%. We introduced the tax-free savings account to allow Canadians to save, tax-free. Since then, more than 10 million Canadians have opened a tax-free savings account. We have cut taxes in every way that the government collects them: personal taxes, consumption taxes, excise taxes, and business taxes.

I want to focus on small business tax relief now.

Allow me to highlight a key driver of growth in our economy: Canada's small businesses.

Let us be clear. The small business job credit is fantastic news for the small businesses right across this country. Our small business job credit will lower EI payroll taxes by 15% and save small businesses over $550 million. In addition, we have made certain that beginning in 2017, premiums will be set according to a seven-year break-even rate, ensuring that premiums are no higher ever than they need to be.

Unfortunately, the Liberal Party's EI proposal, which is full of bad math and encourages business to lay off workers, again demonstrates that the Liberal leader has yet to understand small business.

However, let me quote someone who does understand small business. Jay Myers, from the Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters, said, “The Small Business Job Credit will help a powerhouse — the thousands of small businesses — of the Canadian economy become more competitive”. He makes a good point.

On important matters such as these, I would kindly encourage the members of the Liberal Party to listen to experienced business professionals rather than their less experienced leader.

Small businesses are an absolutely vital component of job creation, and we are committed to supporting them. That is why we introduced the small business job credit in the first place, but it is just the latest step in a long line of actions by our government.

Indeed, support for small business has been and continues to be a critical pillar of our economic action plan. We reduced the small-business tax rate to 11% and increased the amount of income eligible for this lower rate to $500,000 from $300,000. As a result, we have lowered the tax bill for small businesses with $500,000 of taxable income by over $28,000. That is a 34% decrease in their taxes, and they appreciate it.

We also increased the lifetime capital gains exemption to $800,000 in 2014 and indexed the new limit to inflation going forward. By doing so, we are increasing the potential rewards of investing in small business and making it easier for owners of small businesses to transfer their family business to their next generation.

Our government has also reduced the red tape burden for small and medium-sized businesses to help them navigate the tax system. They now face fewer regulations, and the cost of red tape has been reduced by nearly $20 million annually.

We have also committed to enshrining a one-for-one rule into law. For every new regulation added that imposes a burden on businesses, one must be eliminated. It is one for one.

Though we have lowered taxes, they still continue to absorb dollars that would otherwise be used by business owners to seize opportunities for growth and create jobs. Accordingly, and as indicated in our economic action plan 2014, further tax relief for small businesses will be a priority for our government following the return to balanced budgets in 2015.

These steps are just a few of the many ways our Conservative government has demonstrated its commitment to the Canadian economy and to small business in particular. The result of that commitment is clear. I think everyone in the House will agree—even those across the way, should they choose to admit it—that the results we have obtained are somewhat remarkable.

Few countries in the world have emerged from the global economic crisis as strong and as resilient as Canada, led by our Conservative government. Indeed, the Canadian economy continues to be envied all around the world. After eight consecutive years of making the right economic choices, Canada remains strong and will be stronger going forward. As the small business job credit makes clear, we are not done yet.

Small and medium-sized businesses are crucial to Canada's long-term prosperity. Canadians depend on the jobs that they create and the services they provide. Our government supports these businesses and Canadians by keeping taxes low and cutting red tape. Indeed, we have received international recognition for our world-class business tax system. Together with our government's commitment to return to a balanced budget in 2015, these measures will further strengthen Canada's business climate and economy.

By laying a solid foundation for jobs and growth through tax relief, our government is helping to ensure that our country is well positioned to face future challenges and that all Canadians have the opportunity to fully participate and share in a strong and prosperous Canada.

Youth Employment February 12th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, it is in everyone's interest to help ensure that first nations youth receive the education, support, and job skills training they need to get good-paying, long-lasting jobs. The New Prosperity mine will provide just that support and training. Skills training is desperately needed to provide good jobs for our first nations youth.

I asked the leadership of the Tsilhqot'in nation to recognize that its young people need this training to get those jobs. I asked the leadership to visualize how its communities could benefit, if good-paying, long-lasting jobs could be filled by its young people. I urged the leadership to take advantage of this once in a generation opportunity that will provide jobs for their citizens that will last for more than 25 years.

The New Prosperity mine wants first nations youth to take advantage of its skills training to fill those good-paying mine jobs. This is an opportunity that must not be missed.

Mining February 5th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, the Cariboo-Chilcotin area of B.C. has been devastated by the mountain pine beetle plague. Jobs in the forest industry and related industries have been lost, and the economy has suffered a huge blow in Williams Lake and 100 Mile House. Sawmills have cut back on their operations, businesses have closed, and people have left their homeland because there are no jobs.

Now we are presented with a once-in-a-generation opportunity to restore a vibrant economy to this area. We must not miss this opportunity to allow the New Prosperity gold mine to move forward to the provincial permitting stage.

I, my colleague from Kamloops, and 85% of the people of the Cariboo-Chilcotin call on this government to allow this project to move forward. The government can do that by attaching a list of conditions that would satisfy the mitigation of environmental impacts.

We cannot, we must not, miss this opportunity.

Natural Resources January 31st, 2014

Mr. Speaker, our government knows that the Keystone XL pipeline will create jobs and economic growth in Canada and the United States. Furthermore, the pipeline will enhance North American energy security by displacing foreign oil. While the NDP puts ideology before the facts again and again, our Conservative government is focused on ensuring working families have good-paying, long-lasting jobs.

Can the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources tell the House how the Keystone XL pipeline will support Canadian workers?

Respect for Communities Act November 28th, 2013

Mr. Speaker, in one statement the member opposite made, he said that this bill “goes against the health of people”. I would like to suggest that nothing goes against the health of people like drugs. If the member thinks that keeping drug addicts happy and giving them a nice, safe, warm place to inject drugs into their arms or wherever is helpful to them and the health of our society, then I think he might want to reconsider.

Getting these people off drugs is what contributes to the health of our society. That is where the focus should be, not having happy addicts walking the streets because they can go to a nice, warm place to get a fix. I am sorry; he and I will always see this differently.

Respect for Communities Act November 28th, 2013

Mr. Speaker, I listened to the member for Scarborough Southwest. He talked about a couple of things. First was how it would be helpful for the drug addicts on the streets, once they got them inside the door, to get treatment and advice on how to live better and healthier lives. Just near the end of his speech, he talked about how we have to have another new pilot project and work on getting people off the streets and off drugs.

Getting people off drugs and living healthier lives are good things, of course, but we already have injection sites. If the member is going to make claims about how helpful they are, I would love to see some statistics to back it up that show clearly the results of any help that was given. How many people were treated? How many people actually got off drugs? How many people repeated and have never gotten off drugs? It is great to talk a good story, but there have to be facts to back it up.

Offshore Health and Safety Act October 31st, 2013

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank my friend fromTobique—Mactaquac for his eloquent and very clear explanation of the bill and the amendments contained within. I am sure the more members opposite, and all members of the House, understand the importance of the bill, the broader acceptance there will be. I encourage members opposite to pay close attention to it.

This question is about natural resources, but not specifically on this. I know the member knows about this subject and supports it very strongly, and that is natural resource development all across our country in general. Companies that are involved in natural resource development, whether oil and gas, or mining, or other types, have found and understand the huge pool of human resources within first nations communities that lives around, or near, certain sites across the country. They understand the skilled labour pool that is there, available to be trained and put to work on these natural resource sites. Could the member comment on how important this is to our economy, to the natural resource sector's operations and to the first nations communities themselves?

Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada May 27th, 2013

Mr. Speaker, the leader of the Liberal Party is clearly in over his head. Instead of working with our government to bring greater accountability and transparency to the Senate, the Liberal leader is promoting the Senate status quo. This time, as he says, it is because it is to Quebec's advantage.

The Liberal leader said there are 24 senators in Quebec and only 6 for Alberta and British Columbia, which is to Quebec's benefit.

These divisive comments are not surprising. They are consistent with the Liberal leader's poor judgment and lack of respect of Canadians outside of his home province.

The Liberal leader famously once said, “Quebecers are better than the rest of Canada because, you know, we are Quebecers, or whatever”, and that he would think of wanting to make Quebec a country.

The Liberal leader's decision to pit one region of Canada against another is just more proof that he does not have the judgment to be Prime Minister.