House of Commons photo

Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was economy.

Last in Parliament October 2015, as Conservative MP for Nipissing—Timiskaming (Ontario)

Lost his last election, in 2015, with 29% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Carnaval des Compagnons January 29th, 2013

Mr. Speaker, I want to recognize an important cultural event held by the francophone community in my riding of Nipissing—Timiskaming. Later this week, Les Compagnons will celebrate their 50th annual winter carnival, c'est vrai, leur anniversaire d'or, from February 1 to February 10.

The Carnaval des Compagnons is the second largest French-Canadian carnival in Canada. It attracts visitors from all over the region who want to celebrate la Francophonie and experience a truly unique cultural event.

As their member, I am proud of the Carnaval des Compagnons. I encourage my colleagues to make the trip to North Bay this week and join in the fun.

In the words of Les Compagnons, “S'amuser au carnaval, y a pas de mal”.

Come out and enjoy.

International Trade December 5th, 2012

Mr. Speaker, Canada always has been and always will be a trading nation. In fact, nearly 65% of Canada's economy depends on trade and one in five Canadian jobs are generated through exports.

That is why our government is advancing the most ambitious pro-trade plan in Canadian history, a plan that includes a comprehensive trade agreement with the European Union. This trade agreement is expected to boost our bilateral trade by 20%. I will put this into perspective. That is like a $1,000 increase to the average Canadian family's annual income, or 80,000 new jobs for Canadian workers.

Free trade with the EU would bring new opportunities to workers and to their families from coast to coast to coast, including my home province of Ontario.

While the anti-trade NDP continues to stand in the way of Canadian exporters, our government is focused on the opportunities for Canadians.

New Democratic Party of Canada December 3rd, 2012

Mr. Speaker, in case you have not heard, the NDP leader's proposed carbon tax will raise the price of everything, from gas to groceries and electricity. This carbon tax plan is not simply a Christmas wish. In fact it was written in black and white on page four of its campaign documents.

If the NDP leader, Captain Carbon, has his way, Canadians will not wake up to Christmas joy, but instead to coal in their stockings on Christmas morning. The job-killing bah humbug carbon tax would stall the economy and make it more difficult for Canadian families to make ends meet.

Our government will always stand up against that Christmas grinch's proposed carbon tax. This holiday season, Canadians can sleep tight knowing that our government remains focused on jobs, growth and long-term prosperity.

Jobs and Growth Act, 2012 November 29th, 2012

Mr. Speaker, what will happen is clear from the economic action plan. I have been a part of international business for most of my career. As I mentioned in my speech, it is clear from the initiatives that we have put in place to drive innovation and entrepreneurship in business that this will be of great benefit to our particular part of the province. I am thinking of the incentives through the National Research Council and the Canadian innovation commercialization program. These are all positive benefits for businesses in my area, which are not like Atlantic Canada.

Jobs and Growth Act, 2012 November 29th, 2012

Mr. Speaker, we are talking about the economic action plan 2012 here. We are talking about the growth of the Canadian economy and long-term prosperity for all Canadians, including Atlantic Canada. It is clear from the IMF and all the international bodies that Canada is doing among the best of all the G7 countries. Atlantic Canada will improve along with other Canadians as rule if we keep these policies. It is our government's plan to keep these policies, to continue the growth and long-term prosperity of Canadians everywhere, including Atlantic Canada.

Jobs and Growth Act, 2012 November 29th, 2012

Mr. Speaker, I do not know about that tax, but the $21 billion carbon tax is the centrepiece of the NDP program. It seems to be focusing on a one-solution-fits-all carbon tax of $21 billion. It is beyond me why the NDP members will not explain that carbon tax yet are so focused on it. They seem to have no other policies than focusing on that tax.

Jobs and Growth Act, 2012 November 29th, 2012

Mr. Speaker, I am very proud to rise and speak on behalf of my constituents of Nipissing—Timiskaming about our economic action plan 2012.

Canada, in stark contrast to other G7 countries, has had unparalleled success in leading the global recovery. We are resilient and prosperous. What has contributed to this record? Has it been by belabouring businesses with costly and redundant red tape? No. Has it been by implementing or maintaining fiscally unsustainable programs? No. Has it been by bloating government with a cradle to grave philosophy? No. Has it been by promoting an aggravating and massive $21 billion carbon tax as touted by the NDP? No, not at all.

The single reason why Canada remains resilient and prosperous, the explicit principle behind our success, is the courageous long-term vision of our Conservative government. Our sound fiscal framework has been rooted in our conviction to serve the interests of all Canadians now and well into the future.

It is easy for the opposition to sit across the aisle and fire accusations. Take, for example, our stance on the principled and necessary changes to OAS. The NDP believe, in spite of sober facts, that Canada should recklessly maintain an unsustainable framework. The member for Churchill claimed the other day that our changes were unfair to the younger generation. I challenge the NDP to explain how fair and reasonable it is to allow that younger generation to reach retirement age and realize that there is no money because the government at the time, fully seized of an unsustainable model, sat back and did absolutely nothing.

This is the kind of principled leadership that Canada needs and, indeed, is the kind of leadership Canadians voted for in 2011. Our government bases its decisions on principle and accountability to the Canadian people. This government will not sell out the future of this country for political convenience. Our plan for growth and long-term prosperity may at times be difficult, but it remains necessary. It is only our Conservative government that holds the courage and principle to do what is right.

I would like to quickly highlight three specific areas our government has improved for the long-term benefit of Canadians, ones that have a particular impact on my riding of Nipissing—Timiskaming, those being families, seniors and small businesses.

Our Conservative government remains committed to keeping families strong. Part of economic action plan 2012 has been our effort to provide families with the necessary relief and flexibility in their household budgets to ensure that they can meet the challenges and rewards of raising a family, especially those most vulnerable.

We first cut the GST from 7% to 6% to 5%, a tax write-off of about $1,000 back into the pockets of average families. We have decreased the lowest personal income tax to 15% and removed one million Canadians from the tax rolls altogether.

We also introduced the universal child care benefit, giving families flexibility and choice in daycare, by providing $1,200 a year for each child under six years of age. We have also invested in the quality of life and future of our young Canadians through the children's art and children's fitness tax credits.

New initiatives like the first-time homebuyer's tax credit are opening up new possibilities for Canadian families and reducing the economic challenges of keeping a family healthy and strong.

Our strong record of tax relief has, on average, put $3,100 back into the pockets of Canadian families. Indeed, Canadian families are the most essential part of Canadian life and they can count on their Conservative government to deliver principled results, as opposed to the opposition who remain fixed on a job-killing $21 billion carbon tax and all kinds of red tape.

With regard to seniors, our government has taken a principled stand on ensuring dignity and respect for those who have helped make Canada the great nation it is today. Our government recognizes that the global economic downturn has been difficult on many Canadians, including seniors. Again, our Conservative government has remained vigilant to provide relief and flexibility to seniors, especially those most vulnerable.

We have increased the amount that recipients of the guaranteed income supplement, GIS, can earn through employment without any reduction in their GIS benefits. We have also introduced the largest GIS increase in over 25 years, ensuring that eligible, low income seniors will receive additional assistance so that they may live in peace and security. We have increased the age credit amount to $2,000 and doubled the pension income credit to $2,000.

Our support for seniors has not been limited simply to direct financial help. We remain committed to improving the quality of life and ensuring the dignity of Canadian seniors. That is why we have taken steps to combat elder abuse in all forms; enhanced the new horizons for seniors program by providing an additional $10 million to promote volunteerism, mentorship and the social participation of seniors; and of course introduce tougher legislation for those who abuse seniors.

Having been in business and development my entire life, leading trade missions across the globe, I am particularly proud of our Conservative record in supporting small business. Whereas the opposition wants to drown small business owners with costly and redundant red tape, our government recognizes the crucial role that small business plays in the diversity and vitality of our Canadian economy.

Part of our government's principled, long-term vision is supporting opportunities for growth and long-term prosperity. We have increased direct financial support for business innovation through the National Research Council, the Canadian innovation commercialization program, and the industrial research and development intern program

Our job-creating hiring credit for small business benefited 534,000 employers in the last year alone. We have increased the small business limit to $500,000 and decreased the small business tax rate from 12% to 11%.

It is clear from these examples and the additional contents of our economic action plan 2012 that our Conservative government remains committed to making principled and necessary long-term commitments on behalf of Canadians for the benefit of Canadians.

I am rather disturbed that the only consistent argument put forward by the NDP is that this is an omnibus bill that should be reduced in size and broken up. I have news for the opposition: while we may be enjoying a fragile recovery, many Canadians have suffered in the recession and many continue to suffer.

Canadians need principled leadership now. Canadians chose a Conservative majority in 2011 because they knew and understood who would get the job done. Canadians understand that it is only Conservatives who have the intestinal fortitude to get the job done. This government will not take the easy way out. We will continue to fight for the benefit of Canadians now and in the long term.

While the NDP is continually focused on a $21 billion job-killing carbon tax, enforcing costly bureaucratic redundancy or prescribing the enforcement of the Migratory Birds Convention Act as solutions to reviving the manufacturing sector, it is our government that continues to deliver principled results.

It is no surprise that the opposition is so anti-growth, anti-business and anti-entrepreneur. Its solution to everything is to just throw money at it. A good look at Europe will show how those socialist policies turn out.

Frankly, I do not think the opposition believes in the capacities of Canadians and the potential of Canada. Opposition members consistently spout and defend divisive rhetoric. Even the Liberals, like the member for Papineau, believe that if someone is not from a specific part of the country, he or she is not fit to govern.

Our economic action plan 2012 is for the benefit of Canadians. It was tailored in consultation with Canadians from coast to coast to coast and is proving to be a sound fiscal framework. Canadians need to realize their full potential and live their lives how they want to live them.

Our economic action plan 2012 will deliver growth, jobs and long-term prosperity. I encourage the opposition to support it. I encourage them to believe in Canadians and national unity in Canada.

Criminal Code November 28th, 2012

Mr. Speaker, I am in the same boat. I voted twice.

North Bay Battalion November 19th, 2012

Mr. Speaker, after 10 long years of frustration waiting to see the return of the Ontario Hockey League, junior hockey is back in North Bay.

Last week I joined Mayor Al McDonald, city council and citizens of North Bay at the announcement that the Battalion is coming to our city. Our fans had responded overwhelmingly to the challenge of securing 2,000 season tickets in merely six days. Indeed, the Battalion is coming home to a community that is as passionate about hockey as its owner.

Congratulations to team owner Scott Abbott, president Mike Griffin and coach Stan Butler as the Battalion prepares to take up its new home in September next year. Coach Butler says hockey fans in North Bay will enjoy a level of hockey the city has not seen in some time.

I am very proud to congratulate the city of North Bay and its hockey fans on their success and celebration of our new team. Go troops, go!

Northern Ontario Port Authority October 25th, 2012

Mr. Speaker, last Friday in North Bay, I was pleased to join the General Chairperson's Association, the employees of Ontario Northland, and the municipalities and native councils of Northern Ontario to unveil a clear far-sighted proposal to develop a new federal port authority and a new deal for Northern Ontario.

The proposal will create jobs, economic growth and long-term prosperity. It will improve the transportation infrastructure of Northern Ontario and be funded by the wealth extraction of the vast mineral resources of the Ring of Fire.

This visionary proposal is all about Northern Ontarians developing long-term solutions for Northern Ontarians for the benefit of Northern Ontarians.

Indeed, I am proud to stand shoulder to shoulder with my friends, neighbours and fellow northerners to further this plan, which is crucial to the future of our region. In simple terms, a stronger Northern Ontario means a stronger Canada. We will all benefit from that.