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Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was quebec.

Last in Parliament March 2011, as Bloc MP for Drummond (Québec)

Lost his last election, in 2011, with 22% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Drummondville Customs Office February 28th, 2011

Mr. Speaker, the unwarranted decision by the Minister of Public Safety to close the Drummondville customs office is being denounced by everyone: the elected officials of Drummondville, the Conférence régionale des élus, and the Drummondville economic development agency, which represents more than 700 public bodies and businesses.

Neither the minister nor representatives of the Canada Border Services Agency have yet been able to provide a credible argument to support this inexplicable decision. The minister did not even deign to answer the request for a meeting we made in January.

The Drummondville customs office is an employer that generates between $500,000 and $700,000 per month, in premises already leased by Service Canada.

Although the minister may refuse to speak to us, his parliamentary colleagues, it is his duty and responsibility to answer to the people of Drummond, who are telling him unequivocally that he has made a bad decision.

Grammy Awards February 14th, 2011

Mr. Speaker, at the 53rd annual Grammy Awards yesterday, the Montreal band Arcade Fire unexpectedly took home the prestigious album of the year award for The Suburbs, an album about boredom in North American suburbia.

This shining star of Montreal's indie scene has been popular since the launch of its first album, Funeral, in 2004. The band, formed around couple Win Butler and Régine Chassagne, is made up of multi-instrumentalists.

On hand to accept their trophy, they thanked both Montreal and Quebec, in French no less, for giving their band a home. And we want to thank them for being such incredible ambassadors for Quebec.

I would also like to congratulate the MSO's conductor, Kent Nagano, who won the Grammy for best opera recording for Saariaho's L'amour de loin.

Luc Plamondon February 10th, 2011

Mr. Speaker, the organizers of the seventh annual Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame Gala have now released the prestigious list of artist inductees. Included on this list is one of Quebec’s most prolific authors and lyricists, Luc Plamondon.

Such is the reputation of Mr. Plamondon in the cultural community of Quebec and la Francophonie that some have no hesitation in labeling him one of our most influential and creative musicians.

He has been writing lyrics for many of the greatest artists of Quebec and French song since the 1970s, and their works are forevermore part of our cultural heritage. He is also the creator of the famous rock operas Starmania and Notre-Dame-de-Paris.

Luc Plamondon is certainly one of Quebec's greatest ambassadors and one of the staunchest proponents of our language and culture.

My Bloc Québécois colleagues and I are proud of his success and we congratulate him on this new honour.

Incendies Film January 31st, 2011

Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the Bloc Québécois, I am very proud to point out that the Quebec film Incendies, directed by Denis Villeneuve, has been nominated for an Oscar in the best foreign language category.

Based on Wajdi Mouawad's play of the same name, Incendies, known as Scorched in English, is about the search for one's identity and one's roots, with elements of a Greek tragedy and against the backdrop of the Israeli–Lebanese conflict. Splendidly adapted by Denis Villeneuve, one cannot help but be touched and amazed by this magnificent film.

It is unfortunate, however, that the Conservative government seems to be incapable of showing the same enthusiasm and pride in today's recognition of two giants of Quebec culture.

The Bloc Québécois would like to wish everyone involved in the film Incendies the best of luck at the Academy Awards ceremony, to be held on February 27, 2011.

Louise Lahaie December 9th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, Louise Lahaie has become the 33rd person to join Drummondville's sports hall of fame, known as Les grands du sport. She has been recognized by her peers for her commitment to youth sports.

Louise Lahaie has been volunteering for the Les Requins swimming club in Drummondville for over 20 years and has been officiating in this sport for many years. Because of her vast experience, she was asked to oversee the officials of the regional swimming association and won the title of official of the year in 2004 from the Fédération de natation du Québec.

She was also president of the Les Requins swimming club in Drummondville and a member of the board of directors of the Drummondville Olympique for nearly 15 years. This latest honour is yet one more achievement to add to her long list. Louise Lahaie will be officially inducted at a gala next April.

We offer our heartfelt congratulations to Ms. Lahaie.

Nancy Guyon December 7th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, Nancy Guyon, Executive Director of the Orchestre symphonique de Drummondville, was recently honoured by the Canada Council in the arts management category. She won the John Hobday Award for established arts managers.

The $10,000 award will allow her to enhance her professional skills by taking part in a recognized program. Ms. Guyon has registered in an executive MBA program with a specialization in organizational diagnostics at the Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières. This degree will contribute to the enhancement of her management skills in cultural businesses and organizations.

In selecting Ms. Guyon, the jury said, “With her MBA, Ms. Guyon will reinforce her own knowledge and experience as an arts administrator. We believe that this challenging project will be invaluable not only to her career but will also greatly benefit the arts community.”

Congratulations to—

Copyright November 26th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, some Canadian musicians have now joined Quebec artists in asking the Conservative government to impose a levy on MP3 players. The logic is simple: without the work of artists, MP3 players are worthless. The House approved a Bloc Québécois motion to authorize the collection of royalties to compensate artists for their creative work.

Why, exactly, is the government refusing to compensate artists fairly?

Copyright November 26th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, the National Assembly of Quebec and a large coalition of artists, creators, authors, performers and even the Union des consommateurs are calling for the Conservative government to make extensive changes to the Copyright Act.

Will the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages listen to this request from Quebec and Canada and amend his bill, which is designed mainly for big distributors, so that it adequately protects our creator's rights?

Canadian Museums Association November 23rd, 2010

Mr. Speaker, I would like to acknowledge the presence today of representatives of the Canadian Museums Association who are here as part of their second annual day on Parliament Hill.

They are here today to raise awareness among all hon. members of the association's financial needs. The Canadian Museums Association is calling for a program that would have the federal government match private sector donations dollar for dollar.

There are more than 2,500 museums in Canada, including nearly 700 in Quebec. They employ more than 24,000 people for a total payroll of roughly $650 million. Tourist visits to museums contribute an estimated $17 billion to Canada’s economy. What museums contribute to our economy is not insignificant. We must help them.

Copyright November 19th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, I also have a nice big page. More than 50,000 creators, artists and artisans in Quebec strongly condemn parts of Bill C-32, which contains no fewer than 17 exceptions to the requirement to pay a copyright fee. ADISQ, the UDA, SARTEC, DAMIC and SODEC, in short, Quebec's entire cultural community is demanding amendments.

Will the government amend its bill to protect Quebec artists' copyrights?