House of Commons photo

Elsewhere

Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was offences.

Last in Parliament October 2015, as Conservative MP for Fundy Royal (New Brunswick)

Lost his last election, in 2015, with 37% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Committees of the House April 30th, 2013

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the 10th report of the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage, entitled “The Canadian Entertainment Software Industry”. Pursuant to Standing Order 109, the committee requests that the government table a comprehensive response to the report.

Brain and Neurological Research April 29th, 2013

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to speak today to our government's announcement to provide matching funds for innovative research through our support for Brain Canada.

We know that innovative research will reduce the burden of neurological disease on Canadians. It can help us learn how to prevent neurological diseases from developing. It will foster development of innovative tools to make early diagnosis. It can also lead to discoveries that will improve treatment.

Our government supports working with the private sector on research. We have doubled the funds available for this project by matching private funds.

Today's announcement is the result of a collaborative effort by the W. Garfield Weston Foundation, Brain Canada, the Krembil Foundation and others.

I am proud of our government's leadership on brain and neurological research, and we look forward to seeing the lives of Canadians improved as a result.

Committees of the House March 27th, 2013

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the eighth report of the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage in relation to its study on the status of amateur coaching in Canada.

Pursuant to Standing Order 109 of the House of Commons, the committee requests that the government table a comprehensive response to this report.

As well, Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the ninth report of the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage in relation to the main estimates for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2014.

Strengthening Military Justice in the Defence of Canada Act December 11th, 2012

Mr. Speaker, it is interesting to see the NDP skate on this bill, mentioning words like “bad rules”. I am not sure if the member is aware of the report of the second independent review, done by former Chief Justice LeSage. I will quote quickly from it. It states:

It is also significant to note the comment of former Chief Justice Lamer who stated, “Canada has developed a very sound and fair military justice framework in which Canadians can have trust and confidence”. I proceed, as did former Chief Justices Dickson and Lamer, from the premise that the military justice system is sound, but some modifications will assist in ensuring its continued strength and viability.

Those modifications are in the bill. However, the underpinnings of the system have been found by three former justices to be sound. Does the hon. member want to insert his judgment over that of former Chief Justices Lamer or LeSage in finding that the underpinnings are somehow not sound, when this has been judicially studied and found to be sound?

He uses words like “bad rules”. No, these are good rules and Bill C-15 improves the rules. Why is the NDP holding up this legislation?

Strengthening Military Justice in the Defence of Canada Act December 11th, 2012

Mr. Speaker, I did listen to the hon. member's speech but am struggling to understand where she is coming from. She seems to have itemized some of the shortcomings of the past, many of which are addressed by this piece of legislation. Most of the recommendations of the former Chief Justice are being addressed in this legislation.

Why is the member's party opposing the amendments in the bill that would actually ensure that convictions for minor service offences would not constitute offences for purposes of the Criminal Records Act? I keep hearing the opposition raise this point. Further to that, the Minister of National Defence has indicated that he is willing to bring in the very amendment to clause 75 of the bill that the hon. member referenced to ensure that it mirrors the amendment passed by committee in the last Parliament.

Why are those members holding this important piece of legislation up?

Committees of the House December 10th, 2012

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the seventh report of the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage in relation to supplementary estimates (B), 2012-13.

Blue Sky Policy December 5th, 2012

Mr. Speaker, I thank everyone who did some research and took some interest in this motion, and I thank all those who spoke to the motion. Government members have explained in detail what the blue sky policy is about, why it is the right policy for Canada, and what benefits have resulted from its implementation.

I am a little alarmed to hear some of the responses from the opposition that seem to suggest that more competition and more choice for consumers would not be a positive thing. Certainly in my experience working with different tourism industry leaders, and even with constituents, having more competition and more choice has always been encouraged. I was also somewhat alarmed to hear one opposition member wonder why I would bring this forward, since I do not have an airport in my riding. I am quite pleased and proud to actually have two airports quite close to my riding. I do not think that is a litmus test for any of us in this House. We do not have to have an airport in our constituencies to speak on issues relevant to air travel.

Just as a quick reminder, the blue sky policy was adopted by our government in 2006 with a view to liberalizing more proactively, but responsibly, our air transport relations with the world.

It has been noted that the blue sky policy is a balanced policy that is consistent with the particular characteristics of our economy, our geography and our air industry. It is not, as has been suggested by others, a one-size-fits-all approach to air transportation negotiations. Each negotiation is primarily driven by the commercial interests of our air industry but also aims to produce long-term and sustainable economic benefits beyond that sector.

Through this approach, we take a long-term view of the competition. It is when more flights are offered that consumer choice and consumer convenience increase. I do not meet many consumers who are not in favour of choice and convenience.

Let me summarize the tangible benefits this policy has produced for consumers and the business and tourism sectors since its inception. This policy has provided Canadian consumers with more choices in terms of both destinations and number of direct flights. As a matter of fact, we have concluded open air transport agreements with most of Canada's top 20 bilateral air travel markets, which together represent about 85% of all of our international passenger traffic.

Over the 2006 to 2011 period, Canadian air carriers increased the number of outbound international flights by 56% and the number of direct destinations by 11%. Concretely, this has led to, for example, new or expanded services to the Asia-Pacific region from Vancouver, a direct service between Calgary and Tokyo, more flights to Latin America from Toronto, and more flights to Europe from Montreal.

The implementation of the blue sky policy has also supported Canada's international trade objectives. As of December 2012, Canada has either concluded, or offered to conclude, an open agreement with countries that collectively represent about 91% of our international two-way merchandise trade.

Canada's tourism industry has also benefited. Under the policy, special efforts have been expanded to promote access from all key, priority inbound markets identified by the Canadian Tourism Commission. That is why Canadian airports and airlines, as well as the tourism sector, under our federal tourism strategy, are regularly consulted on negotiation priorities. Our government's efforts have resulted in open or expanded agreements with France, Germany, Brazil, Mexico, China, India, Japan and South Korea. We have invested in these efforts, because we understand the importance of direct flights to make it easier for tourists to come to Canada.

It is important to remember that 72% of our international passenger traffic is now covered by an open agreement. Before the blue sky policy, we had an open agreement with two countries. Today 43 countries are covered by such agreements. Looking to the future, Asia and Latin America will continue to be areas of focus for the implementation of the blue sky policy.

I strongly believe that the blue sky policy is the right policy for Canada. It is balanced. It is responsible. It takes into account the unique nature of our country, our geography, and the interests of Canadian consumers and businesses. It supports our national air industry as well as our international trade, tourism, and economic development objectives.

I am confident that Canada will continue to benefit from the results of the blue sky policy for many years to come. For all those reasons, I call on all members of this House to support Motion No. 387, which calls on our government to continue the implementation of the blue sky policy for the benefit of all Canadians.

The Economy December 4th, 2012

Mr. Speaker, the Canadian economy has experienced one of the best performances among developed countries around the world. Canada has outperformed all other G7 countries in job growth, creating over 800,000 net new jobs since the end of the recession. We have the soundest banking system in the world. The OECD has projected that Canada will lead the G7 in economic growth for the next 50 years.

Our government is committed to maintaining a strong economy. We also remain committed to keeping taxes low. Since forming government in 2006, we have cut taxes for Canadian families so that they can keep more of their hard-earned money. We have reduced the GST by 2%, and we have introduced important tax savings measures, like the child tax credit, the child disability benefit, the hiring for small business tax credit, and the children's fitness tax credit. These measures will save the average Canadian family over $3,100 per year.

Canadians can count on our government to keep taxes low while investing in the Canadian economy to promote job growth and economic prosperity.

Blue Sky Policy October 31st, 2012

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member raises a number of important points.

We are negotiating these open sky agreements with countries throughout the world. I have the list here. Since the launch of the blue sky policy in 2006, we have negotiated open sky type agreements with 16 countries. We have expanded agreements with 10 countries. They include Mexico, Japan, Jordan, Singapore, Morocco, Cuba, Egypt, Algeria, China and, in answer to the hon. member's question, the Philippines. Under the blue sky agreement, there has been an expanded agreement with the Philippines.

I should also mention that, under our federal tourism strategy, the tourism industry is now at the table and is being very much consulted on its priorities before we negotiate new air service agreements with other countries. We are asking the tourism industry where its priorities are, where it is targeting and how we can work with it to ensure Canada is accessible to visitors from other countries.

Blue Sky Policy October 31st, 2012

Mr. Speaker, our government has been aggressively targeting growth nations for increased tourism travel. I will use, for example, China where the Canadian Tourism Commission, which is supported by our government, has been aggressively going after the Chinese tourists, which is so important.

I should mention that it was the Prime Minister who, a couple of years ago, signed the approved destination status agreement with China. The results have been impressive since that agreement was signed. I will give an example for the hon. member. Travel from China totalled 237,000 person trips in 2011, that is up 22% over 2010, with spending totalling $408 million which is an increase of just under 30%.

We will continue to aggressively market Canada to the world.