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Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was medals.

Last in Parliament October 2015, as Conservative MP for Perth—Wellington (Ontario)

Won his last election, in 2011, with 55% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Agriculture and Agri-Food January 31st, 2014

Mr. Speaker, last week, porcine epidemic diarrhea was detected in southern Ontario. Although this disease poses no risk to human health, it could have serious repercussions for Canada's pork sector. In addition to the already stringent inspections at the border, could the Minister of State for Agriculture please update the House on what else our government is doing to help industry combat this disease?

Business of Supply December 9th, 2013

Mr. Speaker, I would like to pose one question. I have listened intently today to members on the other side talk about how we should gradually double Canada pension. Does everybody here realize that people have to have jobs in order to pay into Canada pension?

I had a call from a gentleman who said that it was great and asked why I was not in support of doubling the pension. He said that he really needed it. I asked him if he was on pension now and he said yes. I asked if his wife was on it and he said she was, too. I asked him if they both drew the same amount and he said no. That was because he paid more in than she did.

Another gentleman came to see me. He said that he fell off of his bicycle and was thinking about going on disability. He said that he thought he could live on $840 a month. When I helped him apply for it, we found out he had never paid in, so he was not eligible.

A lot of the things we are talking about today do not even come under Canada pension. I would ask my hon. colleague to comment on that, please.

Perth—Wellington November 28th, 2013

Mr. Speaker, in my riding of Perth—Wellington, we are blessed to have some of the finest communities in the country.

In the 2013 Communities in Bloom competition, our riding was proudly represented by grand champion: Stratford and the town of Minto, which received the Land Reclamation Award for the beautification of their green spaces as well as their civic engagement.

Two recipients from the same area is no accident. Maybe it is due to our picturesque and welcoming small towns or our abundant farms and rich fields. Having the dynamic and cosmopolitan nature of Stratford and its signature festival, the finest in North America, certainly helps too.

Whatever the cause, there certainly is something very special about our area. I thank these communities and all our constituents for their hard work toward the preservation and enhancement of our wonderful communities.

Old Age Security Act June 12th, 2013

Oh, I cannot say that.

Old Age Security Act June 12th, 2013

Mr. Speaker, I think I was counted as Mr. Sorenson in the first vote. I know I look a lot younger than I really am, but Mr. Sorenson is not here.

Petitions May 2nd, 2013

Mr. Speaker, I stand today to present this petition from constituents in my riding. They would like to see a moratorium on the release of genetically modified alfalfa.

National Volunteer Week April 17th, 2013

Mr. Speaker, next week is National Volunteer Week and I would like to highlight that importance by honouring the 13 million volunteers of this country who have donated the valuable gifts of time and energy to improving their communities.

In my riding of Perth—Wellington, volunteers understand the importance of helping every generation. Volunteers from many non-profit organizations and retirement homes, such as One Care and Royal Palisade, deliver peace of mind and well-being to these families, caregivers and clients. Perth—Wellington volunteers from organizations like Big Brothers and Big Sisters devote hours to assist our youth with the proper mentorship and guidance so they may become the future leaders and contributors of our country.

I wish to extend my thanks and appreciation to all our volunteers for their dedication to improving our communities.

Stratford Festival March 22nd, 2013

Mr. Speaker, this spring the Stratford Festival will roar to life once again, bringing back the finest theatrical company in North America.

For 2013, the festival has outdone itself yet again, with a daring and impressive playbill sure to thrill experienced theatregoers and newcomers alike.

The list of not-to-miss productions this year includes Romeo and Juliet, Fiddler on the Roof, The Three Musketeers, Othello, Tommy, Waiting for Godot and The Merchant of Venice.

Apart from world-class theatrical productions, the festival will hold a score of musical and cultural events.

I congratulate the Stratford Festival on its continued success and thank the festival for its countless contributions to the city of Stratford, the surrounding area and Canada. Over the decades the festival has added to the vibrancy and cultural wealth of the region, and I wish it all the best for 2013.

Petitions March 19th, 2013

Mr. Speaker, I have a petition to present today from my constituents that the House condemn discrimination against females occurring through sex-selective pregnancy termination.

Transboundary Waters Protection Act February 8th, 2013

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise today to join the debate on Bill C-383, the transboundary waters protection act.

First, I would like to thank my colleague from Bruce—Grey—Owen Sound for bringing this important legislation forward. The support that the bill has received so far is a testament to his efforts and reflects the position of Canadians from all regions of this country on the need to protect Canada's waters.

Bulk removals of water would pose a significant threat to Canada's environment. The protection of this resource is of vital importance to all Canadians. That is why, in 2008, our government made a commitment in the Speech from the Throne to put in place stronger protections to prevent the bulk removal of water. It is also why we introduced Bill C-26, which unfortunately died on the order paper with the 2011 election call.

Thanks to the work of the member from Bruce—Grey—Owen Sound, we have this bill before us. The time has now come for the House to pass the legislation, which would ensure Canadian waters are protected from bulk removals. I am glad to see that Bill C-383 is supported by the government and by members of all parties.

As my colleague mentioned, the transboundary waters protection act would amend two acts: the International Boundary Waters Treaty Act and the International River Improvements Act. Amendments to the International Boundary Waters Treaty Act would prevent the bulk removal of water from transboundary waters, waters that flow across borders. Boundary waters that straddle the border, such as the Great Lakes, are already protected under the International Boundary Waters Treaty Act and its regulations. With the changes found in Bill C-383, all of these waters under federal jurisdiction would be protected from the bulk removal of water to outside the country.

There are other elements found in Bill C-383 that would strengthen protections against bulk removals. For example, proposed amendments to the International Boundary Waters Treaty Act would bring the enforcement authority fine schemes and sentencing provisions of the act in line with those found in the Environmental Enforcement Act, which delivers on the government's commitment to bolster protection of water, air, land and wildlife through more effective enforcement.

Provisions found in Bill C-383, which would amend the International Boundary Waters Treaty Act, closely follow the regime from the Environmental Enforcement Act, in terms of the fine schemes. I must remind everyone again of these penalties. Sentencing provisions and enforcement tools would be available. These provisions would include mandatory minimum fines for designated offences and increased maximum fines of all offences under prosecution and conviction.

In addition to higher fines, the act would set out fine ranges that vary according to the nature of the offences and the type of offender, such as individuals, small revenue corporations and corporations. Each of these categories of offender would face stiff fines for violations. For example, individuals could face up to $1 million in fines and a corporation up to $6 million for the first offence. For a second or subsequent offence, the applicable fine range would double. Fines for contravening the law would be cumulative, meaning that a violation that continues for more than one day would be seen as a separate offence for each day that it continues.

Further, the court must order an offender to pay additional fines if the court determines that the offender obtained any property, benefit or advantage from the commission of the offence. Courts also must consider increasing fines if the offence caused damage or risk of damage to the environment. As with the other federal environmental statutes that were amended through the Environmental Enforcement Act, the bill includes other provisions that would enhance the goals of deterrence, denunciation and restoration, which are the fundamental purposes of sentencing.

This legislation contains provisions aligned with the publication of information about an offence committed and the punishment imposed as well as provisions requiring that corporate shareholders be notified in the event of a conviction. The objective is to encourage compliance, given the importance of public opinion to corporate success.

As we can see, this legislation provides strict consequences for violation of the act. The goal is quite simple: to deter anyone from attempting to violate the bulk removal of water prohibitions found in the act.

Bill C-383 would also move certain definitions and exceptions from the regulations for the International Boundaries Water Treaty Act into the act itself. This would make it more difficult to change these definitions or exceptions at a later date and would provide Parliament with a stronger oversight role, should changes ever be considered.

I would also like to take a few minutes to speak about the provision in the bill that would amend the International River Improvements Act. The purpose of the International River Improvements Act is to ensure that international rivers are developed and used in the national interest. International rivers are waters that flow from any place in Canada to any place outside Canada. The International River Improvements Act requires proponents that would like to construct improvements, such as dams, canals, obstructions, reservoirs or other works that would significantly alter the flow or level of any international river at the international boundary, to apply for a licence. This act allows the federal government to ensure that all such works are constructed and operated in a manner that complies with the Canada-U.S. boundary treaty.

Bill C-383 would amend the act to prevent the use of international rivers to transfer large quantities of water across the border. As mentioned in previous speeches and during committee consideration of this bill, some water experts see the use of international rivers as a potentially efficient pathway for transferring water in bulk. To prevent this from happening, Bill C-383 would amend the International River Improvements Act to prohibit licences for linking waters wholly in Canada with international rivers and then using those rivers to move water in bulk across the border. This amendment to the International River Improvements Act would add another layer of protection against the bulk removal of water from Canada. It was endorsed by experts from the Munk School of Global Affairs during the recent standing committee consideration of Bill C-383.

I would once again like to offer my thanks to the member for Bruce—Grey—Owen Sound for introducing this legislation. As we have seen, the bill is roundly supported by members of the House. I urge all members to support this legislation when it comes up for a vote.