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Crucial Fact

  • Her favourite word was pipelines.

Last in Parliament October 2015, as Conservative MP for Whitby—Oshawa (Ontario)

Lost her last election, in 2015, with 42% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Taxation June 16th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, unfortunately, the Liberals and NDP support a mandatory payroll tax hike on Canadian families. Can the Minister of State for Finance update the House on our government's actions to help Canadians save more money for their priorities?

Highway of Heroes Challenge Cup June 16th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I rise in the House today to recognize the Whitby Minor Lacrosse Association, which will be hosting the second annual Highway of Heroes Challenge Cup this weekend.

The cup is held in partnership with the Oakville Minor Lacrosse Association and is played in honour of the men and women who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom.

This one-day Box Lacrosse event will consist of a total of 18 games and will be played at the McKinney Centre in Whitby.

The Highway of Heroes Challenge Cup was born in celebration of the passion shared for lacrosse between the Whitby and Oakville clubs and was named after the section of the 401 named the Highway of Heroes.

I would like to thank both associations for fostering sportsmanship between Whitby and Oakville that instills the importance of commemorating our fallen heroes in our young athletes.

Stomping Out Stigma June 10th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I am proud to rise today to congratulate All Saints Catholic Secondary School teacher Pam Garant who was honoured with the Durham Catholic School Board Award of Merit for her successful efforts to raise awareness of mental illness, an issue that affects 20% of Canadians at some point in their lifetime.

Six years ago, a conference at the Ontario Shores for Mental Health Sciences facility inspired Pam and some of her students to start a club called “Stomping Out Stigma”.

Today, the club is thriving with nearly 80 members who work to reduce the stigma that can be associated with mental health issues and they continue discussions about coping strategies and resilience outside of the school walls.

Pam has helped these students become leaders in our community. I know all members will join me in congratulating the Stomping Out Stigma club for their very important work.

Pensions June 5th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, our government believes that all Canadians should be given as many options as possible to save for a comfortable and secure retirement, how they want and when they want.

Can the Minister of Employment and Social Development please inform the House on our government's approach to helping Canadians save for their retirement?

Employment June 3rd, 2015

Mr. Speaker, Ford, Chrysler, and GM have written to Premier Kathleen Wynne warning that her plan to expand mandatory pension contributions would kill jobs and increase the cost of doing business. Could the Minister of Employment and Social Development please update this House on our government's plan to support job growth in the auto industry?

Taxation May 13th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, it should come as no surprise that our Conservative government is the only one that stands up for middle class Canadian families.

Through our low tax plan for families, our government is helping 100% of families with children receive the benefits they need. All families with children will benefit from our family tax cut and enhanced universal child care benefit. That is over four million families.

The Liberal leader has admitted that he will take away the universal child care benefit. He will take away income splitting and he will take away the tax free savings account.

Canadians can trust this government to deliver on their priorities: keeping taxes low and helping them keep more money in their pockets.

Pipeline Safety Act May 6th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, all the regulated pipelines would be impacted by the proposed liability regime in the bill. The absolute liability for the operators of a major oil pipeline would be set out explicitly at $1 billion. The other classes are to be defined in the regulations, which would follow. We will not have the regulation-making authority to establish the other classes until the bill passes.

However, the government has begun its work to look at the regulatory aspect of how to establish the other classes. That is a normal process. It is anticipated that the classes would include oil pipelines transporting less than 250,000 barrels a day and those transporting natural gas and non-energy pipelines.

We are looking forward to seeing that come forward.

Pipeline Safety Act May 6th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, certainly the Keystone issue is not a forgotten issue. As we know, there are many parties involved, and negotiations are required. Negotiations are under way and are ongoing, and I am sure we will be hearing an update on that matter.

Pipeline Safety Act May 6th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, we addressed those matters at our committee. I am fortunate to be able to speak first hand to that, because we had the National Energy Board members there. We also had the pipeline folks there. We asked those questions.

Basically, they have some new technology. They will replace anything they need to replace. Although that is a 40-year-old pipeline, they have new technology, and they are testing throughout the pipeline to find out where there may be problems.

We have to remember, the liability lies with the carriers. They are not about to not fix something that is going to cost them a lot of money. They are going through that process now.

Pipeline Safety Act May 6th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I will be sharing my time with the member for Yukon.

I appreciate this opportunity to speak to legislation that demonstrates our government's commitment to the things that matter most to Canadians: economic growth, energy security, and environmental protection. The pipeline safety act would deliver on all three. It would help to ensure Canada's continued prosperity while demanding that our vital energy infrastructure is environmentally responsible.

Driving all of this is our determination to have Canadians continue to benefit from pipelines while taxpayers are protected from the potential cost of a pipeline incident. That is why we already have one of the most rigorous pipeline safety regimes in the world. We have measures in place to ensure that Canada's pipelines are safe and modern. We have a national regulator with the teeth to enforce compliance with today's high standards, and we have the results to prove that it is working.

As we have heard many times, between 2008 and 2013, 99.999% of petroleum products transported through federally regulated pipelines in Canada have arrived safely. Our government wants to build on that record of achievement. We are aiming for zero incidents. The pipeline safety act could help us get there.

As members know, the pipeline safety act is another key element in our government's comprehensive plan for responsible resource development. Through this plan, we are ensuring that Canada's abundant natural resources are developed in ways that promote jobs, growth, and long-term prosperity. We are doing this while strengthening environmental protection and ensuring that aboriginal Canadians are engaged in every aspect of resource development.

It is a balanced plan. It is a plan that reduces duplication and makes the regulatory review process more predictable and timely for major resource projects. This plan does so while ensuring that no project is permitted to proceed until it is proven safe for Canadians and safe for the environment.

I would like to pause on that point for just a moment. We have a world-class, and in some cases world-leading, regulatory system overseeing this sector. Our government has already introduced comprehensive measures for tankers and offshore safety to ensure world-class standards. We are also taking action on rail.

Our regulatory system would be further strengthened by this legislation. It would assure Canadians and our international customers that pipeline safety is paramount in Canada. Add such things as technological innovations in the energy sector, our commitment to the meaningful inclusion of aboriginal peoples, and our profound belief in environmental protection and we have all the elements we need to make Canada a global leader in responsible energy development.

The pipeline safety act is an important element in all of this. The act also recognizes that Canada's oil and gas sector is literally helping to fuel our country's economy. In 2013, for example, Canada produced approximately 3.5 million barrels of oil and approximately 13.7 billion cubic feet of natural gas each day. The overwhelming majority of it, some $100 billion worth, was shipped by pipeline.

As well, in 2013 the oil and gas industry employed about 360,000 Canadians directly and indirectly. That is 360,000 well-paying jobs to support Canadians and their families in every part of our country.

Furthermore, Canada's sale of $128 billion in energy products in 2013 represented more than a quarter of our country's merchandise exports. This impact is incredible. The oil and gas industry alone generated almost 8% of our gross domestic product. Over the last five years it generated an average of $23.3 billion annually in government revenue to help pay for social programs such as health care, education, and infrastructure.

Despite recent declines in oil and gas prices, the sheer size of these numbers underscores why our government is doing everything it can to harness the opportunities and benefits of our energy sector for Canadians. Safe, secure, and modern pipelines are essential to these efforts. In fact, the pipeline industry itself is a major employer in Canada, supporting thousands of jobs throughout the country.

The Standing Committee on Natural Resources, which I have the pleasure to be a part of, heard from a representative of Canada's Building Trades Unions, who described the type of job creation at stake with the construction of new pipelines. He said:

If it is an oil pipeline, it means we will have thousands of people in a variety of trades, including plumbers, boilermakers, millwrights, iron workers, sheet metalworkers, insulators, labourers, scaffolders, carpenters, and the occasional elevator constructor.... About 60 trades are involved.

That is just the construction of the pipeline. It is just one element of the economic value derived from creating a modern, safe network of pipelines.

The pipeline safety act would strengthen this world-class effort. Specifically, Bill C-46 would offer additional measures and protections in three key areas. The first is incident prevention, the second is preparedness and response, and the third is liability and compensation.

Liability and compensation is particularly important, because it sends a clear signal of our government's intent to hold pipeline operators accountable for any harm, loss, or damage they might cause.

Canadians should make no mistake about our government's determination in this regard. As the Minister of Natural Resources has said on many occasions, the pipeline safety act would build on companies' unlimited liability when they are at fault or are negligent. This legislation would do so by implementing no-fault or absolute liability for all companies operating pipelines. For major oil pipelines, the absolute liability would be $1 billion. This means that pipeline companies would be responsible for damages, regardless of what happens or who is at fault. It is a standard that would leave nothing to chance.

The pipeline safety act would specifically provide governments with the ability to pursue pipeline operators for the cost of environmental damages. In addition, the legislation would give the National Energy Board the authority to order the reimbursement of spill cleanup costs incurred by governments, aboriginal governing bodies, or individuals.

The bottom line is that taxpayers would not be left on the hook. The full cost of cleanup and compensation would be borne by the pipeline operators, as it should be. This would even extend to pipelines that have been abandoned. Operators would cover any costs and damages related to their pipelines when they were no longer in use. In other words, it is a liability that would continue in perpetuity, or at least until the pipeline was removed from the ground.

I could go on about the merits of Bill C-46, but let me close by simply inviting members to consider this legislation carefully. If they do, I am confident that they will support it as a way of ensuring the safety of our pipelines, the strength of our energy sector, and the prosperity of Canadians.