Section Home
Format XMLPrint format
 
Publications - September 15, 2014 (Previous)
 

41st PARLIAMENT, 2nd SESSION

EDITED HANSARD • NUMBER 109

CONTENTS

Monday, September 15, 2014




House of Commons Debates

VOLUME 147 
l
NUMBER 109 
l
2nd SESSION 
l
41st PARLIAMENT 

OFFICIAL REPORT (HANSARD)

Monday, September 15, 2014

Speaker: The Honourable Andrew Scheer

    The House met at 11 a.m.

Prayers


  (1100)  

[English]

Bill C-479, An Act to Bring Fairness for the Victims of Violent Offenders

The Speaker:  
    I wish to inform the House of an administrative error that occurred with regard to Bill C-479, An Act to amend the Corrections and Conditional Release Act (fairness for victims).

[Translation]

    Members may recall that the Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security made a series of amendments to the bill, which were presented to the House in the committee's second report on March 5, 2014. The committee also ordered that the bill, as amended, be reprinted for the use of the House at report stage.

[English]

    On May 7, 2014, the House concurred in the bill as amended at report stage with a further amendment, and later adopted the bill at third reading.

[Translation]

    As is the usual practice following passage at third reading, House officials prepared a parchment version of the bill and transmitted this parchment to the Senate. Due to an administrative error, the version of the bill that was transmitted to the other place did not reflect the amendment adopted by the House at report stage, but was instead a reflection of the bill as it had been reported back from committee. Unfortunately, this error was not detected until after both houses had adjourned for the summer.

[English]

    I wish to reassure the House that this error was strictly administrative in nature and occurred after third reading was given to Bill C-479. The proceedings which took place in this House and the decisions made by the House with respect to Bill C-479 remain entirely valid. The records of the House relating to this bill are clear and complete.

[Translation]

    However, the documents relating to Bill C-479 that were sent to the other place were not an accurate reflection of the House’s decisions.

[English]

    My predecessor, Speaker Milliken, addressed a similar situation in a ruling given on November 22, 2001, and found on page 7455 of Debates. Guided by this precedent, similar steps have been undertaken in this case. First, once this discrepancy was detected, House officials immediately communicated with their counterparts in the Senate to set about resolving it. Next, I have instructed the Acting Clerk and his officials to take the necessary steps to rectify this error and to ensure that the other place has a corrected copy of Bill C-479 which reflects the proceedings which occurred in this House. Thus, a revised version of the bill will be transmitted to the other place through the usual administrative procedures of Parliament. Finally, I have asked that the “as passed at third reading” version of the bill be reprinted.
    The Senate will of course make its own determination as to how it proceeds with Bill C-479 in light of this situation.
    I wish to reassure members that steps have been taken to ensure that similar errors, rare though they may be, do not reoccur.
    I thank hon. members for their attention.
    It being 11:05, the House will now proceed to the consideration of private members' business as listed on today's order paper.

PRIVATE MEMBERS' BUSINESS

[Private Members' Business]

Supporting Non-Partisan Agents of Parliament Act

    The House proceeded to the consideration of Bill C-520, An Act supporting non-partisan agents of Parliament, as reported (with amendment) from the committee.

  (1105)  

[English]

Speaker's Ruling

The Speaker:  
    There are 11 motions and amendments standing on the notice paper for the report stage of Bill C-520.
    Motions Nos. 1 to 11 will be grouped for debate and voted upon according to the voting pattern available at the table.

[Translation]

    I will now put Motions Nos. 1 to 11 to the House.

[English]

Motions in Amendment 

Mr. Charlie Angus (Timmins—James Bay, NDP)  
     moved:
Motion No. 1
    That Bill C-520 be amended by deleting Clause 1.
Motion No. 2
    That Bill C-520 be amended by deleting Clause 2.
Motion No. 3
    That Bill C-520 be amended by deleting Clause 3.
Motion No. 4
    That Bill C-520 be amended by deleting Clause 4.
Motion No. 5
    That Bill C-520 be amended by deleting Clause 5.
Motion No. 6
    That Bill C-520 be amended by deleting Clause 7.
Motion No. 7
    That Bill C-520 be amended by deleting Clause 8.

[Translation]

Mr. Mark Adler (York Centre, CPC)  
     moved:
Motion No. 8
    That Bill C-520, in Clause 8, be amended by replacing, in the English version, lines 39 to 41 on page 4 with the following:
“responsibilities of the position in the office of the agent of Parliament, conduct”

[English]

Mr. Charlie Angus (Timmins—James Bay, NDP)  
     moved:
Motion No. 9
    That Bill C-520 be amended by deleting Clause 11.
Motion No. 10
    That Bill C-520 be amended by deleting Clause 12.
Motion No. 11
    That Bill C-520 be amended by deleting Clause 13.
Mr. Charlie Angus (Timmins—James Bay, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, as always, it is a great honour to rise in this House and represent the people of Timmins—James Bay and to have the first speech in what might be the final session of this Parliament.
     The debate we are having today is very telling. We in this House represent our partisan interests. We are a party-based system, so we are expected to come in wearing our partisan interests.
    However, all of us, regardless of what party we are in, have a larger responsibility, in that we are parliamentarians. We are part of a system of democratic accountability that has been worked out in the Westminster tradition through centuries. Each one of the precedents that have been established in the various Westminster systems establishes a code of conduct that we are all supposed to be part of, which is that the overall obligation of Parliament is to represent the interests of the Canadian people in an accountable and fair manner.
    However, what we have seen with the current government is a steady attack on the basic institutions that hold this Parliament to account. We are now moving to the stage where this Parliament has become very much a Potemkin democracy. Certainly we have debates and we have votes, but it is becoming more and more of a charade in which the powers of decision-making are being moved into the executive around the Prime Minister's Office through cabinet secrecies without accountability, and Canadians are left watching a spectacle in this House that is often a degradation of the very notion of parliamentary accountability.
    We see that what has happened in this Parliament under the current majority government is a steady attack on the officers of Parliament. People back home need to understand that the role of the officers in Parliament is of non-partisan experts whose job is to hold parliamentarians, bureaucrats, and cabinet ministers to account. However, that runs counter to the Conservative notion of accountability, which is hold their enemies to account and use the levers and powers of government to go after their straw men and their perceived enemies.
    All parliamentarians have to be engaged in ensuring that our parliamentary officers have the powers they need to ensure a functioning democracy. These officers include the ethics commissioner, the lobbying commissioner, the Privacy Commissioner, the access to information commissioner, Elections Canada, and official languages. As well, we have recently brought in a parliamentary budget office.
    Let us look at the pattern under the current government before we get to this rather ridiculous bill that we are debating today.
    Everyone remembers the absolutely vicious trashing of the former parliamentary budget officer, Kevin Page, whose credibility probably ranks him as one of the most respected public servants I have met in my public career and who was relentlessly attacked because he was not a toady for the Prime Minister's Office.
     We see the attack on Elections Canada and the attempt to change the electoral laws to make it illegal for the Elections Canada officer to speak out about the basic rights Canadians have in a voting democracy. Certainly they had to pull back some of those amendments because they were so far over the line, but the attack from the Prime Minister's spokesman on the credibility of Elections Canada is once again moving us much further across this moral Rubicon that the Conservatives crossed many years ago.
     We saw the gutting of the Conflict of Interest Act when they brought in recommendations that not a single witness supported or even talked about because they were so ridiculous. The gutting of the Conflict of Interest Act is so ridiculous that the Conservatives would now hold 250,000 civil servants to the same account as a parliamentary secretary. People working in a Service Canada call centre in Moose Jaw would now be under the ethics commissioner in the same way as a parliamentary secretary who is receiving money from lobbyists for fundraisers. They would be held to the same account. The Conservatives have watered down the act to make it virtually useless.
    We see their use of government resources against charities, again their perceived enemies, by using the Income Tax Act to go after Oxfam and tell Oxfam, an internationally respected organization, that in the country of Canada it cannot declare that it is out to fight poverty.

  (1110)  

    We see the member for Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke, who always has a light bulb burning half bright with some of the motions that she has brought forward. She has now brought forward this motion that NGOs, which are health organizations and international groups, will have to announce what kind of international money and connections are backing them. This is not about going after backroom lobbyists or bureaucrats; it is about going after charities and NGOs.
    I was looking at the member for Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke's bill. The only bills similar to it anywhere in the world are in Belarus, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, China. There is not a credible western democracy that would use its levers of government to go after NGOs, except the current government. We see with Bill C-520, which was rightly called a government witch hunt, that there is no legislation anywhere in the world that is even close to what is proposed here.
    This is a fascinating bill, because it was so badly thought out and such an overreach that the Conservatives could not bring any witnesses to back it up. Even right-wing ideologues with tinfoil hats would not come forward to defend this ugly baby. The government did not want any witnesses, so it had to strip its own bill because the bill was so odious. Under this bill, a parliamentary secretary under investigation for receiving all kinds of money for lobbyists could demand an investigation of the lobbying commissioner. Again, the people who are supposed to be investigated are the ones who have the power to do the investigating.
    This bill, which was called a witch hunt, is an attack on the credibility of independent parliamentary officers so that now they have to make declarations. There is not much left in this bill. This bill was so odious that, my God, the poor Conservatives had come in and squeeze all the ugly guts out. They were pale when having to deal with it because it was such a dumbed-down bill, but what they left in it was the obligation that if someone is working in the ethics office or wants to work for the Privacy Commissioner, that person has to make a declaration of all his or her political activity going back 10 years.
    An hon. member: And forward.
    Mr. Charlie Angus: And forward.
    This is about the Conservatives searching out the hidden Liberals underneath the bedcovers. This is about attacking the fundamental merit-based system that we have for approving the officers of Parliament.
    One would think that there is some kind of problem that they were responding to, but no. Other than Conservative smears against the Elections Canada office, there has never been a case that has ever shown that the people who work in the access to information commission or the privacy commission, the officers of Parliament, have ever done this in a partisan manner that needed investigation. In fact, they are already covered under part 7 of the Public Service Employment Act, the Political Activities Regulations, and the Values and Ethics Code for the Public Sector. We are talking about some of the most qualified and highly credible people in our system, but the government is saying we cannot trust them.
    Therefore, we have a situation in which a bill is being brought forward that allows the Conservatives, when they are under investigation, to say that nine years ago a secretary in someone's office was on a riding association and there must be some kind of political skulduggery, because she also had a sign on her lawn.
    This is about undermining a credible system that is in place.
    Viewers back home should always remember this: the role of government is to be accountable to the Canadian people, and there are institutions that hold government to account. The Conservative government believes that it is accountable to no one and can undermine the basic rules of parliamentary process so that they can hold the people who are supposed to be investigating them to account.
    We have sat through the discussion on this bill. The Conservatives have brought forward no witnesses. We have seen nothing credible. They have absolutely no basis for this bill. It has been called a despicable witch hunt, which it is, and now it is just an non-credible witch hunt. The fact is that the government had to basically strip its own bill down to nothing.
    Let us save the member for York Centre further embarrassment. Let us kill this bill now and stop this spineless attack on the institutions that hold Parliament accountable.

  (1115)  

Mr. Mark Adler (York Centre, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I would first like to welcome all of the members back from a long summer in their constituencies, and who serve the people who place their trust in us. Welcome back, to all of my colleagues.
    I am pleased to have this opportunity to provide the government's response to Bill C-520, an act supporting non-partisan agents of Parliament. I am certain most would agree that non-partisanship is an essential element of both the professional public administration and responsible democratic government. A non-partisan public service is one where appointments are based on merit and are free of political influence, and where public servants perform their duties and are seen to perform their duties in a politically impartial manner. The government values this vital feature of our Westminster system of government and is committed to safeguarding the principle of political impartiality, which is why it is pleased to support the bill before us.
    We are privileged in this country. We have one of the best public services in the world. Public servants are vital to the success of our country. No government, of any partisan stripe, can maintain and build a strong, united, and secure Canada without the assistance of a professional, capable public service that is committed to the public interest.
    One has to only look at the public service awards of excellence to see how public servants make a difference in the lives of Canadians. From investigating and reporting on disasters, to improving access to data, to engaging Canadians across the country from space, public servants rise to the challenges presented to them daily and make us all proud. Public servants are dedicated people, who care about our country and want to contribute to making it a better place to live. It is public servants who welcome immigrants to start new lives here by deciding on cases of individual applicants. It is public servants who administer income support programs, such as the Canada pension plan and old age security, and provide approximately 200,000 Canadian seniors with their only source of income. An effective public service is key to getting things done for ordinary working Canadians and their families.
    This is important. One of the keys to an effective public service is the principle of non-partisanship. In fact, one of the drivers behind the creation of a non-partisan public service some 100 years ago was the view that the public service had become inefficient and ineffective because it was largely staffed on a partisan basis. As a result, public servants often lacked the necessary qualifications for their positions. Furthermore, a century ago the appointment of public servants for partisan reasons was blamed for swelling the ranks of the public service. It is therefore essential to the success of the public service that its reputation and tradition of impartiality be maintained and protected, which is why this bill is so welcomed.
    In budget 2013, the government committed to review and update public service processes and systems to ensure that the public service continues to serve all Canadians well. This bill is consistent with that commitment. It recognizes that while non-partisanship is expected of all public servants, agents of Parliament play a particularly important role in government oversight. Agents of Parliament carry out duties assigned by statute and report directly to Parliament. The individuals appointed to these offices perform work on behalf of Parliament and report to both chambers, usually through the Speakers.
    Given the close relationship between parliamentarians, agents of Parliament, and their employees, it is vital that they carry out their duties free from political interference, and that they remain independent of all political affiliations.
    Furthermore, given the high level of visibility of these offices, it is vital that their work be approached in a non-partisan way to maintain the confidence of parliamentarians and Canadians. To that end, this bill would require every person who applies for a position in an office of an agent of Parliament to make a declaration about their past engagements in politically partisan positions. This declaration would state whether in the last 10 years before applying for that position the person occupied certain specified politically partisan positions. The declarations would be posted on the website of the office of the relevant agent of Parliament. As well, the bill would require persons who work in these offices to provide a written undertaking that they will conduct themselves in a non-partisan manner in fulfilling the official duties and responsibilities of their positions.

  (1120)  

    I am pleased to report that the bill was subject to a thorough examination by the Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics. The committee heard from a number of witnesses and has recommended a number of amendments. In particular, I would like to highlight the following amendment, which is that agents of Parliament would no longer be required to conduct an examination of alleged partisan conduct and that they would therefore no longer be required to report to Parliament on such examinations.
    In sum, the bill as it now stands provides enhanced accountability and transparency. It gives parliamentarians the confidence they need that the conduct of those who work in the offices of agents of Parliament is impartial. As stated in the bill itself, it would help to avoid potential conflicts that are likely to arise or be perceived to arise between partisan activities and the official duties and responsibilities of an agent of Parliament or any person who works in the office of an agent of Parliament.
    I therefore call on all members to join me in supporting Bill C-520.
Mr. Kevin Lamoureux (Winnipeg North, Lib.):  
     Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to stand and address Bill C-520 today. I have a few things that I would like to get on the record.
     I would challenge the member and the Conservative Party as to why they have felt it necessary to bring forward the bill. As has been illustrated by the New Democratic speaker, the current government has not been a friend to our agents of Parliament, and I think we could come up with a number of examples which would clearly demonstrate that.
    Canadians should be concerned regarding the general attitude that the Conservative Party majority has towards agents of Parliament. I think we have witnessed over the last few years an abuse of government power in using that majority to quite often override what our agents of Parliament have been trying to address in the best interest of Canadians.
    There are a number of thoughts that come to mind, but first I will highlight what this particular bill is about.
    The proposed legislation would do nothing to deal with the elaborate and partisan appointments of the current government. I think that is important to recognize because it is a real problem that the current Conservative government has.
    Also, the legislation is an underhanded attack on the agents of Parliament and the people who work in the offices of the agents. The agents of Parliament are reputable individuals, and their personal work and life experiences are communicated and understood during the interview process. This is why I ask why we have the proposed legislation before us today. Is it necessary, given the important issues out there that we all have to face?
    We just came back after a summer of being with our constituents. I am sure that members of Parliament worked very hard during the summer in trying to get a good sense of the issues that are impacting their constituents. However, I suspect that no one would have raised the issue that is before us in the bill. Therefore, I question the motivation that the member has in bringing forward the bill.
    I have a great deal of respect for the role that our parliamentary officers play on many critically important issues.
     A couple of years ago, our Parliamentary Budget Officer provided comment on the old age supplement. The Prime Minister was overseas at the time, when he dropped the bombshell that the government wanted to increase the age of retirement from 65 to 67, which is something that the Liberal Party has been very clearly opposed to.
     We believe the government was wrong in changing the age of retirement for OAS from 65 to 67. It was a bad move. We had the independent Parliamentary Budget Officer in essence indicate that Canada could afford to continue on with the age of 65. However, if we listened to what the government was saying, we heard there was some sort of a crisis situation and if it was not increased to 67 from 65 our system would fall apart. We in the Liberal Party knew that was not the case, and we had our Parliamentary Budget Officer indicate that the Liberal Party was correct and that there was no crisis.
    That was a couple of years ago, but just this last session members will remember the issue with the Chief Electoral Officer.

  (1125)  

     Elections Canada is an institution respected around the world as an organization of immense credibility that is not partisan.
    I sat through hours of debate and public consultations, where time after time the Conservative government went against this institution, even when we had the Chief Electoral Officer and previous electoral officers before us saying that the actions taken within that legislation were wrong and that the government was making serious mistakes by forcing through the so-called Fair Elections Act, which is far from what that legislation is actually doing.
    What did we have at the time? We had a verbal attack against one of our agents of Parliament, one of the offices that are highly apolitical because they do get engaged in partisanship. The government went after that agency. It went after the Chief Electoral Officer himself, imputing all sorts of motives in an attempt to get what it wanted.
    Whether it is the Chief Electoral Officer, the Auditor General, the Commissioner of Official Languages, the Privacy Commissioner, the Information Commissioner, the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner, the Commissioner of Lobbying, or the Public Sector Integrity Commissioner, these are very important agents of our parliamentary system. They have a very important role to play in Canadian society. It is one of the ways in which all parliamentarians, whether they are on government benches or on opposition benches, are engaged.
    We often turn to the Auditor General of Canada for clarification on important issues. How many times have we had the Auditor General of Canada get engaged with the F-35 contract, the hundreds of millions of tax dollars, actually billions of dollars, when it comes to the F-35 and the debacle that has taken place? We have turned to our Auditor General to try to get a better understanding of those important issues that need to be reported on in an apolitical fashion.
     Every year we get reports that highlight inefficiencies and problems the government has not been able to address. Quite often there will be a series of recommendations brought forward, and not just from the Auditor General of Canada but from other agents of Parliament. They are there to improve the system and to ensure that there is more accountability and transparency. Liberal governments in the past acted on the many different recommendations brought forward from these independent agencies.
    The government has received numerous reports, numerous recommendations, on everything from the F-35 to the fairness of elections, and it has really done very little, if anything. The government has failed to address those very important issues Canadians want it to address.

  (1130)  

    Instead, the government has brought forward the piece of legislation before us today, which calls its motivation into question. Why is it this, of all things? If we want to do something--
The Deputy Speaker:  
    Order. Resuming debate. The hon. Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister.
Mr. Paul Calandra (Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and for Intergovernmental Affairs, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, like my colleague, I would like to welcome back all hon. members.
    I want to take a moment to highlight some of the foolishness from the speaker we just heard. He talked about Canada. When we talk about Canada right now, we have to talk about a country that is leading the world in terms of job creation. We have to talk about a country that has reduced taxes to the average Canadian family by $3,200. There is $3,200 more in their pockets. We have economic growth that is leading the world.
    As parliamentarians, I, like many of my colleagues, have had the opportunity to travel. As I have travelled abroad to a number of places during my time in office, I have yet to have found one parliamentarian from another legislature who would not trade places with Canada's position right now. The hon. member might want to think about that.
    One of the realities is that the government obviously does not do that alone. It does that with the co-operation of the professional public service.
    The member talked about the respect his party has for institutions. The Liberal government was so corrupt when it was tossed out that the first thing our government and our Prime Minister brought in when we came to office was the Federal Accountability Act. It was actually this government and this Prime Minister that brought in the Accountability Act, that brought in the Parliamentary Budget Officer, that brought in the Commissioner of Lobbying, that brought in some of the institutions to address the years of corruption and inactivity and the lack of respect for our institutions that was brought on by the Liberals.
    I want to commend the member for York Centre for bringing this legislation forward. He highlighted something he feels is an important mechanism to improve accountability and transparency in the system. As he highlighted, we have if not the best then one of the best public services in the entire world. When I look back at what we were able to achieve through Canada's economic action plan and the speed by which we were able to deliver that, I know that it was done with the assistance of our extraordinary public service. We could not have done that if we did not have one of the best public services in the world. What we have seen is that Canada has led the way in coming out of the global recession and has become a model that other nations look to when they look to bring forward stimulus packages to improve their economies.
    The member for York Centre has brought forward a bill after consulting broadly and with a number of people in his riding. He has brought forward a bill that seeks to improve transparency in the public service.
    Canada is a great place, in part because we have a non-partisan public service. It is a fundamental principle that has helped make Canada the great nation it is. However, we also know that there are a number of talented, extraordinary people within the public service who want to serve in a different capacity. Although they are happy and have done great things within the public service, they perhaps want to move into a different realm and perhaps participate by being elected to the House of Commons, provincial legislatures, or municipal councils. They choose to serve their nation or their provinces or communities in a different way. Having seen that and understanding the need for continuing to have a non-partisan, open, and transparent public service, the member brought forward a bill that would help to protect the officials who work in the offices of agents of Parliament.
    As the member for Timmins—James Bay and the member for York Centre have said, we had this legislation in front of our committee. It was a model of how a committee should work when looking at a private member's bill. It was also a testament to the member for York Centre. After consulting and hearing the depositions in front of the committee, the member himself brought forward a number of reasoned amendments to reflect the fact that the point of the bill was to protect those people within the offices of agents of Parliament, to improve transparency, and to continue to build on what Canadians have come to regard as the best public service in the world. The member brought forward these amendments so that we could review them as a committee.

  (1135)  

    We spent a lot of time debating the amendments to the bill. Obviously we did not all agree. We did not all agree on either the bill or the amendments that were brought forward. A lot of time was spent debating them, and as members can see, there is some disagreement in the House with respect to the contents of the bill.
    However, by and large, it worked as Canadians would expect it to work. A private member brought forward a bill that he thought was important that would improve the public service. He thought it was important to his constituents and that it would provide protection to those people in the public service who want to serve in different capacities, either in this House or in provincial legislatures. He brought forward the bill to provide that protection.
    When the member for York Centre heard from witnesses and they asked for amendments to be made to make the bill better, those amendments were brought forward and debated at committee. Ultimately, they were brought forward to the House, where we are debating them today.
    I would ask the members, as they are reviewing this bill, to put it in context and for just a moment to put partisan rhetoric aside and look at what the bill seeks to accomplish.
    When the Auditor General of Canada came before the committee, he laid on the table some of the areas he was very concerned about. He talked about investigations and reporting back to Parliament and the fact that he was uncomfortable with that. By and large, we heard that from some of the other agents of Parliament, too.
    As the committee worked through it, and as it sought to investigate how this would work, it decided that it was probably not something that would be an effective tool for transparency in the public service. It was not being looked upon in the spirit in which it was brought forward, so the hon. member decided to withdraw that provision from the bill.
    Just to sum up, this is a very good bill. It is aimed at protecting our public servants. It is aimed at giving them an opportunity to serve in different capacities. It would actually build on the legislation and the rules that are already in place in the broader public sector to ensure that we continue to have a non-partisan, effective public service.
    I commend the member for York Centre not only for bringing forward this bill but for doing all the work that needed to be done to modify and amend the bill and to gain the support of individuals who had at one point come before the committee with a different opinion. I suspect now that when people look at this, they will be confident that what they see is the right approach and they will be confident that this bill will do what it is supposed to do, which is protect our public service while guaranteeing a non-partisan public service for many years to come.
    Unlike my friends in the opposition, let me close by saying how proud of I am of this country. I have had the opportunity to serve since 2008. When it comes to where Canada has been and where it is going, I cannot tell members how excited I am about where Canada is going. When I look at our job creation and the economic opportunities Canadians have that they did not have before, and when I look at the leadership the Prime Minister is showing on the international stage, I know that Canada is safe. I know that Canada is secure. I know that the opportunities in the job market for our youth are expanding.
    I, unlike the opposition, am very confident about where Canada is going and what we have done. I look forward to many more years of helping this great country become even better. Unlike the opposition, I do not look down on this country. I always look forward, and I hope that the opposition will finally join with us in helping to build a bigger, better, stronger, and safer Canada.

  (1140)  

[Translation]

Mr. Mathieu Ravignat (Pontiac, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, it is a tremendous privilege and honour for me to rise in the House and speak on behalf of the people of Pontiac, which is certainly one of the most beautiful ridings in the country.
    Like my colleagues, I was fortunate enough to visit every part of my riding and to listen to my constituents. People everywhere, whether in Maniwaki, Rapides-des-Joachims, Masson-Angers or Buckingham, shared their views, which has re-energized me and given me the boost I needed to represent them here, an honour that I am quite happy to accept. Of course, they also shared their concerns with me.
    Many active and retired public servants live in my riding. Given that it is not far from Ottawa, many people follow federal politics closely and have concerns about democracy. They have seen the government put more and more power into the hands of the executive branch in a partisan manner.

  (1145)  

[English]

    This is what is so ironic about the bill. It is a blind, really. It speaks about dealing with partisanship but it does the opposite. One thing we have to fundamentally recognize about the Westminster system is that it is a partisan system. The partisanship goes from the very base all the way to the top.
    Therefore, I ask this fundamental question: Who is going to judge partisanship in the bill? The only logical answer to that question is the government. Therefore, we have to be careful with the very definition of partisanship. We are not talking about an arm's length judgment of the agents of Parliament or of the public service. We are talking about a government, which has proven itself highly partisan, giving itself the tools to basically go forward with a witch hunt across the public service.
    This ill-conceived, badly written piece of legislation is actually redundant. Somehow, over there on those benches they forgot that there is an entire article in the Public Service Employment Act, part 7, which very clearly defines for the public service what a partisan activity is. That definition applies to employees of agents of Parliament and the public service at large. In fact, as a public servant before becoming an elected official, I myself had to abide by that article very closely. If they happened to take the time to read it and actually look at its details, they would have seen that the bill proposes redundancies.
    One might think that we are being partisan in saying that, and that it is the NDP's opinion. In fact, it is an opinion shared by experts and by the commissioners themselves. It is important to put on record what the commissioners actually think about the bill.
    The information commissioner said that it is:
    Difficult to understand the need for the Bill; or what problem it is attempting to resolve
    Although the stated purpose is to avoid conflicts related to “partisan activities” that term is not defined or mentioned in the Bill
    Creates an environment that may hinder the independence and the execution of the mandate of the [Office of the Information Commissioner].
    I will continue with a quote from no less a person than the Auditor General, Mr. Ferguson. He said:
...I think the way it is drafted now, there are some irritants in it that really aren't necessary and wouldn't help our independence.
     It won't affect the way we define these types of activities or the way we manage conflict of interest. But I think, as I've said before, it raises some [important] questions....
    It does raise some important questions and I will give that to the government. The problem is that it does not answer them. When it does answer them, it answers in vagaries. Why would it not even define the term "partisanship" in the legislation? There is a clear definition of that in part 7 of the Public Service Employment Act, so why make it even more difficult to judge the partisanship of a public servant or partisan activities if it were not to open the door to what would be political interference?
    I do not have to tell my colleagues on this side of the bench. We have seen that political interference time and time again. We saw it recently with an ATIP request. If the government truly believed in transparency and in non-partisanship in the public service, why did some of its staff get involved in an ATIP request? Access to information is one of the fundamental ways for our democracy to get access to information that is owned by Canadian citizens. Time and time again the government has used the cabinet confidentiality clause in order to get around revealing sensitive information to Canadians.
    What I would also bring up is that only one session was given to the study of this bill, one session for something so fundamental it affects the independence of the agents of Parliament.
    When it comes to the supposed independence of the public service, the government has also shown, in giving new guidelines for the use of social media by the public service, by the way it is dealing with sick leave in the pre-negotiations of the collective agreements, how it has hidden its intentions with regard to a number of matters when dealing with the public service, and not just the fundamental lack of respect that has been shown time and time again by the President of the Treasury Board to our public service. I can understand why Canadians are skeptical about the bill. I can understand why my own constituents are.
    Fundamentally, we have to ask ourselves before drafting legislation whether or not there are already existing rules in place that do the same job. This is an issue of sound management and as legislators it is just part of our homework. The fundamental homework on the bill was not done. Obviously, the question that one can ask is: why? I particularly have some doubts about whether or not this bill was cooked up in the PMO's office to deal with people who have an independent voice like Kevin Page and Marc Mayrand. The government has even taken on the Supreme Court, one of the highest, highly-respected, if not most respected institutions in our country.
    As democrats and as Canadians, we have to worry when a government tries to slip in these types of rules through no less than a private member's bill. If the government really wants to muzzle our independent agents of Parliament, it should just come out and be honest about it and bring out its duct tape and ropes. Instead, time and time again, it smears their names. If the Parliamentary Budget Officer agrees with it, there is no problem.

  (1150)  

[Translation]

    The accolades roll in.

[English]

    However, the second that a parliamentary agent says something critical of the government, the entire Conservative machine and the entire media circus that is there to protect an ideology that wants to concentrate power in the hands of the PMO's office are there to dwindle the quality of our democracy.

[Translation]

Ms. Charmaine Borg (Terrebonne—Blainville, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, I would like to welcome all of the members here in the House back to Parliament. The New Democrats worked hard this summer. They met with their constituents and knocked on a lot of doors to find out about people's priorities. I myself am so glad that I know more about the issues and concerns that matter most to the people of Terrebonne—Blainville.
    I am pleased to rise in the House today to debate Bill C-520. Since I am a member of the committee that studied this bill, I feel confident talking about just how bad it is.
    I would like to begin by saying that the NDP will always seek to strengthen political impartiality and transparency in Parliament. The NDP believes that Parliament cannot function well without these values, which underpin its credibility and that of its institutions. My NDP colleagues and I fully embrace the principle of political neutrality and transparency.
    I also believe that any bill whose purpose is to implement measures based on these principles must be drafted with great care and attention to detail. Unfortunately, that is not the case with Bill C-520. Not only is it badly written, it is also yet another sorry attempt by the government to cover up its own failures in terms of parliamentary accountability.
    Other than the title—which, by the way, is a smokescreen—the content of Bill C-520 is useless, redundant and tinged with malice. Still, Canadians will not be taken in. They are well aware that the true purpose of this bill is to intimidate agents of Parliament, the very people whose mandate is to protect Canadians from the government's abuses.
    This shows yet again that the Conservatives do not want to be accountable to anyone.They want to do what they want to do when they want to do it, and they could not care less about democracy. With a bill like Bill C-520, they are not even trying to hide the fact. This is another sorry example of the Conservatives' way of doing things: a witch hunt targeting those who would bring them into line.
    The NDP strongly opposes this bill, which is rife with flaws, omissions and sinister motives. We are very proud of our work in committee. We worked hard to force the government to eliminate the worst parts of Bill C-520. Even so, this bill serves no purpose, and that is what I would like to demonstrate today.
    When the hon. member for York Centre appeared before the Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics to defend his bill, he described it as “imperative” and “critical”. Using such an alarming tone suggests that the political neutrality of agents of Parliament is often threatened. That is what my colleague, the hon. member for Timmins—James Bay, was trying to find out more about. He asked the member for York Centre whether he had any examples of partisan activities conducted by any of the nine offices of the agents of Parliament who are subject to his bill. Oddly, the hon. member for York Centre had no concrete examples to provide. Not one.
    It is odd that Bill C-520 is meant to address a problem that does not exist. Even more strange, or more worrisome, I should say, is that during review in committee we found out that the hon. member for York Centre did not contact any of the nine offices of the agents of Parliament when his bill was being drafted, even though they will be directly affected by the proposed measures in the bill.
    If the hon. member had bothered to take this more seriously and had held consultations, he would have soon realized that we already have a whole series of laws and codes of ethics governing the offices of agents of Parliament and that those laws and codes impose political neutrality on anyone employed by those offices. For example, most of the offices of agents of Parliament are already regulated by the Public Service Employment Act, the Political Activities Regulations and the Values and Ethics Code for the Public Sector.
    Other laws are in place to ensure the political neutrality of offices that are not subject to the Public Service Employment Act, such as the office of the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner, who is appointed under the Parliament of Canada Act. This statute takes political neutrality into account in the appointment process. What is more, the commissioner's office is governed by a code of values and standards of conduct that specifically and thoroughly addresses political activities and neutrality. A number of other agents of Parliament have their own code of conduct that complements the current legislative regime.
    As hon. members can see, we already have a host of laws and public policies that ensure the political neutrality of agents of Parliament and their employees.

  (1155)  

    The three agents of Parliament who testified before the committee did not provide any examples of a conflict of interest or political partisanship. Their employees are professionals who carry out their official duties in a strictly non-partisan way.
    Clearly, the current system is working. It is effective and, as a result, Bill C-520 is unnecessary and redundant. It is therefore not surprising that the member for York Centre was unable to provide any examples of partisan actions.
    If the government was really serious about its approach and was actually acting in good faith, it would have consulted all of the agents of Parliament and invited all of the agents affected by Bill C-520 to testify in committee. However, it did not do so. In my opinion, that was the least the government could have done.
    When I read Bill C-520 for the first time, I wondered what the real motives of the member for York Centre were. After all, this bill does not solve a problem; rather, it is a solution that is looking for a problem.
    We have to ask ourselves why such a bill is being introduced since, in addition to duplicating systems and creating overlap, Bill C-520 is seriously flawed. Well, I got an answer this past June.
    Everyone agrees that Bill C-520 is an unfair attack on the agents of Parliament whose duty it is to monitor the Conservatives. We learned from an article in the National Post that the member for York Centre, the sponsor of this bill, accepted inappropriate donations from lobbyists that he met as part of his work on the Standing Committee on Finance.
    This type of solicitation violates the guidelines issued by the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner, which prohibit MPs from targeting any organizations or individuals with which they anticipate having official dealings.
    This is not the first time that this type of thing has happened. Over the past few months, even Conservative ministers have had to pay back donations that the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner deemed inappropriate.
    Clearly, the current government does not want to be accountable any more than it wants to be monitored. The agents of Parliament are doing an excellent job of protecting us from government abuse, since the Conservatives are being caught with their hands in the cookie jar on a regular basis.
    Rather than following the rules, the Conservatives are seeking to undermine the credibility of those who monitor them by unfairly attacking those individuals. That is what happened with the former parliamentary budget officer and, more recently, with the Chief Electoral Officer.
    Bill C-520 is nothing more than a cynical attempt on the part of the Conservatives to make Parliament less accountable to Canadians. It is very worrisome.
    Canadians deserve a government that respects parliamentary institutions, not one that tries to circumvent the rules and take advantage of the system.
    I would like to speak to another aspect of this bill that is of great concern to me, namely the privacy rights of employees in the offices of agents of Parliament.
    This bill requires anyone who applies for a position with or works in the office of an agent of Parliament to produce a written declaration indicating any partisan positions they have held in the past 10 years. The bill also requires that the declaration be posted on the office's website. In my opinion, these requirements are unnecessary and violate employees' privacy.
    Everyone knows that the Conservatives do not care about Canadians' privacy. That is blatantly obvious in this case.
    Forcing office employees to publicly divulge this type of information could have serious consequences because their work location and political affiliations would be made public. What is more, in 10 years, an employee could have changed affiliations or completely ceased any political involvement.
    Those kinds of factors could cause employees keep quiet instead of disclosing this information. In addition, they may be concerned about the impact such declarations could have on their career and therefore may be reluctant to disclose anything.
    Thanks to the NDP's hard work and effort, we avoided the worst. When this bill was studied in committee, we got the government to back down and forced it to withdraw the most dangerous provisions in the original bill.
    Unfortunately, the concessions the Conservatives made do very little to assuage our concerns, which are shared by the agents of Parliament. Bill C-520 is still a set of useless provisions that will lead to confusion and make agents of Parliament less independent.
    The NDP will continue to work to protect the agencies of parliamentary oversight.
    Our country deserves better than a selfish, mean-spirited government.

  (1200)  

[English]

The Deputy Speaker:  
    Resuming debate. The hon. member for Winnipeg Centre will only have two minutes before this stage of the debate ends.
Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, even if it is only for two minutes, I am glad to join the debate on Bill C-520 because I have watched it with great interest since it was first introduced. My observation, after listening to the debate from my colleagues and observing the member for York Centre who sponsored the bill, is that the Conservatives' all too evident disrespect for Parliament seems to have made a quantum leap to an out-and-out contempt for Parliament. The bill personifies the attitude that they will systematically undermine and chip away at all of the things that make our Westminster parliamentary system function, and one of those is the independence of members of Parliament. They undermine and try to bring into disrepute the reputations of some of the most honourable people who uphold the integrity of our parliamentary system.
    However, we cannot really blame the member for York Centre for this. We all know this is not a private member's bill. In fact, the Conservatives use their private members' bills in the cheapest way possible as a way to avoid the scrutiny and oversight that government bills actually receive.
     We know that 25 out of 30 of the so-called crime bills put forward by the Conservative Party were put forward as private members' bills. The Prime Minister's Office writes them and finds a willing stooge within the Conservative caucus to sponsor these bills. That way they do not go through the same legislative and constitutionality checks to ensure these bills do not offend the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. They get all the media advantage without any of the scrutiny and oversight that are supposed to take place on bills.
    I wish the member for York Centre had done one thing. He had a last opportunity in this second hour of debate to apologize to the officers of Parliament whose reputations he undermined and made accusations about. Somebody has to tell Conservatives that the truth does not have a liberal bias. Their xenophobia, their paranoia is that those people who make detrimental comments about anything they do are somehow now enemies of the state and they have the rug pulled out from under them and their reputations tarnished. That is offensive to me. The member for York Centre could have used this opportunity to apologize. This is one of the things that parties do to floor-crossers. They have give them a dog of a bill because they do not really trust them anyway.

GOVERNMENT ORDERS

[Government Orders]

  (1205)  

[Translation]

Red Tape Reduction Act

    The House resumed from June 19 consideration of the motion that Bill C-21, An Act to control the administrative burden that regulations impose on businesses, be read the second time and referred to a committee.
Hon. Maxime Bernier (Minister of State (Small Business and Tourism, and Agriculture), CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to share my time here today with my colleague from Don Valley West and particularly to have the opportunity to speak to this bill.
    As members are aware, I had the opportunity to chair the Red Tape Reduction Commission several months ago. This bill enshrines in law a very important rule. Of course I am referring to the one-for-one rule, which entrepreneurs asked for in consultations.
    What does this rule mean in terms of regulations?
    It is quite simple: any time one of my cabinet colleagues wishes to introduce a new regulation that affects entrepreneurs and business people, he or she must remove or eliminate another. That is why it is called the one-for-one rule. This will ensure that the administrative burden on businesses does not increase from year to year.
    This rule has already been in effect for a year here in the government. It is a pleasure for me to enshrine it in law to ensure that it is always followed and to fulfill our campaign commitment to Canadians.
    When a minister has to repeal a regulation, he or she must remove a regulation with an administrative burden that is equal to that of the regulation to be implemented. This new regulation must therefore have the same cost of compliance for businesses.
    Consequently, regulations are assessed so that when the minister wants to implement a new regulation, he or she removes a regulation that carries the same weight for small businesses.
    This rule was instituted as a result of the consultations that we, the members of the commission, conducted. In all, 15 round tables were held in 13 different Canadian cities, and they were attended by 189 entrepreneurs or their representatives through their associations. We also received submissions through the Internet.
    We concluded that business people want less government regulation and a more efficient government that does not treat people like children by holding their hands their whole life. They want a government that respects individuals' freedom and responsibility and that treats Canadians and entrepreneurs like free and responsible people. Canadians are responsible and they know that they must obey Canada's laws. However, we must eliminate redundant regulations that affect the profitability of businesses. That is why we have introduced the one-for-one rule.
    People who appeared before the commission told us that government regulations have an impact on their companies' bottom line. We all know that time is money. In a small business with less than 10 employees, filling out a form required by the state means that they are not doing what they do best, that is, working for themselves, creating jobs and being more productive. That is why this rule is in the bill and will be enshrined in law so as to ensure that the administrative burden on businesses does not increase.
    During our consultations, we identified more than 2,300 clear and specific irritants. I invite members and Canadians to have a look at the Red Tape Reduction Commission's report, which provides a list of irritants specific to various federal government departments. There were more than 2,300—

  (1210)  

The Deputy Speaker:  
    Order. The hon. member for Laurentides—Labelle on a point of order.
Mr. Marc-André Morin:  
    Mr. Speaker, I do not see how this in any way relates to the bill we are discussing.
The Deputy Speaker:  
    I think it is in order.
    The minister of state may continue.
Hon. Maxime Bernier:  
    Mr. Speaker, I was saying that these 2,300 irritants identified by the commission, with the support and the vigilance of Canadians, have been eliminated. As I said earlier, this rule was put in place in April 2012. It will now be legislated.
    I would also like to inform the House that as of June 16, 2014, the reduction in administration burden under the rule was valued at more than $20 million. That is $20 million in net savings for Canadian business owners. How did we manage these savings and ensure that Canadian business owners would benefit from them? We did so by reducing and abolishing 19 regulations at the federal level. We made the regulations much simpler and easier to understand, and we ensured that the rules were written in more accessible language.
    I remind members that in budget 2007, we committed to reducing the overall paper burden on businesses by 20%. I have good news about that. Our government fulfilled this commitment in March 2009. We have eliminated some 80,000 regulatory requirements and obligations. The effect has been quite simple: business owners now have more time to focus on creating wealth and jobs in Canada.
    One example of these unnecessary regulations that were imposed by departments and that we abolished came from the Canada Revenue Agency. The agency has many regulations, especially for entrepreneurs. We identified more than 8,000 obsolete forms, filings and obligations that the agency required from entrepreneurs and Canadians. We simply abolished them. Now we know that when the agency is dealing with Canadians, it is treating them the way it treats every other commercial enterprise. That is to say that when an individual sends a written request to the agency about the interpretation of a regulation or a law, that person will receive a written response from the agency. In that way, the agency is serving Canadians better. When entrepreneurs have a question about how to interpret a tax law or regulation, they can simply write to the agency and it will respond within a reasonable time frame.
    It seems quite simple, but these are the sorts of things that were not done before at the agency and that are done now. It means that entrepreneurs can know in advance how the agency interprets a regulation so that they can legitimately comply with it.
    We also ensured that companies can now submit more than 1,200 electronic records of employment at the same time. That was a request from the associations that represent the majority of Canada's entrepreneurs. We made it happen.
    In the 2011 throne speech, we also committed to reducing red tape. That commitment is reflected in the fact that the agency is now listening to the public and entrepreneurs and is responding to requests from Canadians in a timely manner.
    There are many other initiatives that we have taken within the government to reduce red tape. I would like to point out that Canadians can now obtain a passport that is valid for 10 years instead of only five. That, too, will reduce red tape.
    I am proud to have been able to speak to this bill, since I worked with my government colleagues to develop the bill as it now stands. It addresses the concerns of entrepreneurs. I am pleased that the one-for-one rule will be enshrined in law.

  (1215)  

Ms. Hélène LeBlanc (LaSalle—Émard, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, I listened closely to the Minister of State for Small Business and Tourism, and Agriculture's speech. I have also listened to a lot of merchants and small and medium-sized business owners in my riding. I really pay attention to the people in my riding who have something to say about small and medium-sized businesses. These people are not seeing a lot of encouraging signs from the government. The NDP put forward a number of proposals about the credit card fees imposed on small and medium-sized businesses.
    Since the minister is here to answer my question, I would like to ask him why the Conservatives do not support measures to regulate credit card fees, particularly the fees that small merchants and small and medium-sized businesses have to pay.
Hon. Maxime Bernier:  
    Mr. Speaker, my colleague and I have not been talking to the same business people. As the member for Beauce, I am lucky to be surrounded by SMEs. Many of the business people in Beauce are happy with our government's measures to foster freedom, which includes economic freedom and, of course, individual responsibility. When people are free to make their dreams come true, they can create wealth. That is what is happening in Beauce and all over Canada.
    That being said, there is certainly a very heavy administrative burden on small businesses, and that is because of the three levels of government: federal, provincial and municipal. Perhaps people in the member's riding have talked to her about provincial and municipal government regulations. The federal government, however, has done its part, and I urge my colleagues in other provinces to do the same and reduce the administrative burden they place on business people.

[English]

Hon. Gerry Byrne (Humber—St. Barbe—Baie Verte, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, this initiative began seven years ago, in 2007. In the time between then and now, could the minister inform the House whether there has been a deliberate and conscientious effort on the part of the government to remove existing redundant regulation?
    The minister referred to a mass of unnecessary regulation and burden that was pre-existing in the system. Could he report to the House that all redundant and unnecessary regulation has now been effectively removed from the Canadian regulatory system?

  (1220)  

[Translation]

Hon. Maxime Bernier:  
    Mr. Speaker, I said earlier in my speech that 2,300 irritants that were affecting entrepreneurs have been eliminated, as these were measures that were no longer needed. This will give us a more effective regulatory framework.
    Canada has been a country since 1867, and some legislation contains outdated regulations. We will continue to examine those outdated regulations and eliminate them. That is why we are studying this bill and the one-for-one rule here today. It is important to eliminate the outdated regulations as new ones are introduced.
    Treasury Board does this kind of work every day, and we will continue to do it in order to ensure that Canada will always have an effective regulatory system in place, without any unnecessary regulations.

[English]

Hon. Steven Fletcher (Charleswood—St. James—Assiniboia, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I would like to commend the Minister of State for Small Business and Tourism and the President of the Treasury Board for their hard work on this. I have been on the treasury board for five or six years now and I have seen first hand that these ministers, and other colleagues, really have worked hard to get rid of red tape.
    Could the minister explain why the red tape reduction is important and how it would fit into the government's overall plan to create jobs, wealth and prosperity for Canadians?
Hon. Maxime Bernier:  
    Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to sit with my colleague on treasury board. We are all working hard to ensure that entrepreneurs can do what they do best, which is create jobs and wealth in our country. As a government it is very simple: it is more economic freedom. If people are free to realize their dreams, they will be able to do what they want to do and, at the same time, create jobs and wealth in the country. It is not a big fat government that creates jobs; it is the entrepreneurs.
    To allow entrepreneurs to do what they do best, this legislation is important. Now we will reduce the burden and abolish the red tape so entrepreneurs can do what they do best, and that is great news. That is the language of our free trade agenda, our low tax agenda and red tape agenda.
    I am very pleased today that we have the opportunity to vote on this excellent bill.
Mr. John Carmichael (Don Valley West, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I stand to speak on the importance of the government's one-for-one rule. I want to thank the Minister of State for Small Business and Tourism, and Agriculture for sharing his time with me on this important legislation, which we are seeking to enshrine in law through this bill today.
    For anyone not familiar with it, the one-for-one rule places strict controls on the growth of regulatory red tape on businesses. The one-for-one rule is part of a package of system-wide reforms to Canada's federal regulatory system that we promised to implement when we released our action plan in October 2012. Actually, the one-for-one rule came into effect earlier than our action plan; it came into effect on April 1, 2012.
    As the President of the Treasury Board said when announcing the one-for-one legislation, this rule is helping to create the conditions for economic growth by increasing Canadian competitiveness and reducing roadblocks to business innovation. I would add that the legislation before us will make these conditions the law of the land.
    I will take a moment to describe how the one-for-one rule came about. As members may recall, in economic action plan 2010, our government committed to reducing regulatory red tape in order to improve the ability of businesses and entrepreneurs to respond to emerging growth opportunities and create jobs. To do this, we created the Red Tape Reduction Commission, which was chaired by the Minister of State for Small Business and Tourism, and Agriculture.
    The commission's mandate was twofold. First, it was to identify irritants to business that stem from federal regulatory requirements and review how those requirements are administered to reduce the compliance burden on businesses, especially small business. The focus, incidentally, was to be on irritants that have a clear detrimental effect to growth, competitiveness, and innovation. Second, it was to recommend options that address the irritants, and control and reduce the compliance burden on a long-term basis.
    The commission held consultations with businesses and Canadians, both in person and online, to hear their concerns with excessive red tape and how it was hampering their business. Their very consultations took place in ridings and constituencies across this country, including one in my own constituency of Don Valley West.
    As a result of these consultations, the commission recommended a combination of system-wide reforms and targeted actions. The one-for-one rule is one of the reforms that came out of that process. As I mentioned, it controls the cost of the administrative burden borne by businesses, particularly small businesses, and it does it in two ways. First, under the one-for-one rule, regulators have 24 months to offset any increase in the cost of the administrative burden resulting from a regulatory change with an equal cost reduction from existing regulations. Second, it requires that a regulation be taken off the books whenever a new regulation that adds an administrative burden cost is introduced. In this way, the rule controls both the cost of the administrative burden and the actual number of regulations that businesses have to deal with. It works.
    During its first year of implementation, the one-for-one rule provided a successful system-wide control on regulatory red tape impacting businesses. What is more, as of June 16, 2014, under the one-for-one rule, the government had reduced administrative burden by over $20 million and achieved a net reduction of 19 regulations. We are confident that that trend towards savings will continue, and in fact it must continue.
    Let me give a real-life example of the one-for-one rule in action. Last January, we announced a proposal to change the Food and Drug Regulations to allow regulated pharmacy technicians to oversee the transfer of prescriptions from one pharmacy to another, a task formerly restricted to pharmacists alone, and to complete associated paperwork. Pharmacists can now spend more time providing advice to and serving customers, and less time at their desks doing paperwork.

  (1225)  

    As a result, pharmacies across Canada will start to reduce their administrative burdens this year, resulting in annual savings of some $15 million by 2018.
    Another reform we have made has lifted the threshold of corporations reporting financial and ownership information under the Corporations Returns Act. As a result, more than 32,000 businesses no longer need to file a complex government return. This change is expected to reduce the administrative burden by about $1.2 million a year.
    The one-for-one rule and our other red tape reduction efforts are bearing fruit. They are increasing Canadian competitiveness, freeing businesses to innovate, invest, grow, and create jobs, and enhancing Canada's reputation as one of the best places in the world in which to do business and to invest.
    In fact, in Bloomberg's most recent ranking of the best countries in the world for doing business, Canada placed second, just behind Hong Kong and ahead of the United States. By following through on our action plan commitments, our government is doing the hard work required to cement this reputation.
    Our top priority is to create economic growth and jobs in Canada, and one of the most important ways we can do this is by maintaining high productivity.
    According to Statistics Canada, in 2004, gross domestic product per person in Canada was almost 300% higher than in 1961, with labour productivity accounting for 80% of that remarkable increase.
    It is a key responsibility of government to set the conditions in which this productivity can continue to grow. Every effort must be made to increase the competitiveness of our firms and enable them to compete for markets. That is why reforming our federal regulatory system with measures like the one-for-one rule is crucial. It is the way to create the right climate for small businesses to grow and succeed in Canada, particularly in a time of global economic uncertainty. It is the way forward.
    What is more, it comes on top of a series of measures we have taken to help businesses thrive. We have gone from one of the highest marginal effective tax rates on business to among the lowest. We have lowered taxes 150 times since taking office, reducing taxes for Canadian businesses from 22% in 2007, to 15% in 2012.
    As a result, Canada today has the confidence of the world's investors. We intend to keep that confidence level high with measures like this one-for-one rule legislation, which shows Canada is serious about competing with the rest of the world.
    Enshrining the one-for-one rule in law shows how much we believe in Canadians. We know our people can compete with the best in the world when they are not stifled with unnecessary bureaucratic red tape.
    That is why we are showing our faith in Canadians by giving the one-for-one rule the force of law, and that is why I am asking the hon. members of this House to vote for this legislation and vote for Canadians.

  (1230)  

[Translation]

Mr. Raymond Côté (Beauport—Limoilou, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague across the way for his speech and I would like to welcome everyone back to the House. Personally, I am very happy to be back.
    This debate shows, once again, that the Conservatives are all talk and no action. Over the past three and a half years that I have been here, I have had the opportunity to speak with many entrepreneurs and business leaders in various sectors. When it comes to red tape, bureaucracy and problems regarding what approach to take, the government's record is the exact opposite of what it advocates in this bill, which is evident in the employment insurance file.
    There the government has definitely increased the burden, which is causing a lot of problems for small businesses.
    How can my colleague justify supporting this bill, while showing such a laissez-faire attitude on other issues?

[English]

Mr. John Carmichael:  
    Mr. Speaker, I want to welcome the member back as well. I hope everybody has had a wonderful summer and that we are ready to get back to work.
    Clearly, this bill is good work for the House. We had good news on EI last week, and I hope the member was able to hear that news. More importantly, on this issue today, I want to read a quote that is relevant. It is by Laura Jones, who is the vice-president of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business. She stated:
    CFIB has always said, if it matters, measure it. The federal government continues to be a leader in fighting red tape, particularly when it comes to measuring, cutting, and publicly reporting on the burden being shouldered by small business.
    I come from a business background, and I understand regulatory and bureaucratic red tape. I can confirm that by removing, on a one-for-one basis, burdensome regulation in favour of new, more refined, and more productive regulation, it is the right direction for this government to go. I look forward to the House supporting this later today.

  (1235)  

Mr. Kevin Lamoureux (Winnipeg North, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, in terms of economic growth into the future and how it could positively impact the middle class, one thing we need to recognize is the vital role that small businesses play. I would suggest it is the backbone of our economy. There are things we could be doing, and looking at ways to reduce red tape is a very strong positive.
     I have a question for the member. To what degree does he believe that the government has any role in looking at ways to get rid of some of the red tape for other jurisdictions, such as federal regulations, provincial regulations, municipal regulations? Is there a role for the federal government, from his perspective?
Mr. John Carmichael:  
    Mr. Speaker, clearly there is a role, but today we are talking about the one-for-one rule. The purpose of this legislation is to remove the burdensome regulation that is crowding small businesses in their ability to compete on the world stage. We support free trade and we look at the opportunities internationally. Regulations are required internally in this country, whether provincially or federally, and this government has a role to play in that.
    Therefore we must absolutely play a role, but, more importantly, we must remove the hurdles that stifle small and medium-sized businesses in their ability to compete and secure business on the global stage. This legislation plays an important part in helping us to achieve that, and I hope the member will support it.
Mr. Glenn Thibeault (Sudbury, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to rise in the House today. I want to welcome back my colleagues on all sides of the House. We have important work to get to and I am looking forward to starting that important work with our discussion today on Bill C-21.
    As the NDP critic for small business, government imposed red tape and the paper burden faced by Canada's entrepreneurs remains one of the primary concerns raised with me by business owners as I continue to consult with them on how government can create the conditions for them to grow their businesses and create jobs from coast to coast to coast.
    Whether it is the local bakery or the flower shop, small and medium-sized businesses are the heart of our local economies and the backbone of thriving, prosperous communities. It is these small business owners who create jobs, employ our neighbours, and support our charities. I can speak to that truthfully as I ran the United Way in Sudbury before I was elected in 2008. It was the small and medium-sized business owners who came out to support our charities and support the United Way, and so many of them across our communities. That is why it is so important that the government do all it can to support the growth of small businesses and why New Democrats support common sense solutions to reduce the paper burden and the compliance costs small businesses face when dealing with the government.
    New Democrats believe in reducing the paper burden and implementing solutions that would have the potential to eliminate red tape for businesses. Young entrepreneurs and family businesses are key to a prosperous economic future for Canada. We need to ensure they are using their time as efficiently as possible. The goal of reducing the paper burden for job creators is laudable.
    According to a report by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, various forms of regulatory requirements spread across all levels of government cost business owners an estimated $30 billion a year in time and money. This particularly concerns small and medium-sized businesses because the annual cost of regulation per employee is highest for enterprises with less than five employees. I think of all of the businesses in my riding, many of them are what we call the businesses on Main Street. These businesses are doing great work. They start at seven o'clock in the morning and finish at nine or ten o'clock at night. They have five or less employees. However, these businesses lack the financial capacity to hire someone dedicated to regulatory compliance. Therefore, these costs often are internalized as lost opportunity costs because it is the small business owners themselves who are faced with the daunting task of filling out the piles of paperwork that a business is obligated to file.
    With that being said, while we are happy to work with Canada's entrepreneurs to make their interaction with government as simple and cost-effective as possible, New Democrats also believe regulations that are in the public interest should be maintained. It is not just a question of managing the number of regulations on the books but of determining which regulations are working for Canadians and which are not. It seems like common sense.
    Most importantly, government regulations that protect health, safety, and the environment of Canadians should be a priority. Unfortunately, the bill only pays lip service to that obligation. In fact, only in the preamble to the bill does it state that the enactment would not apply to regulations that protect the health and safety of Canadians. Even more worrisome, there is no mention of the word “environment”. The preamble states, “Whereas the one-for-one rule must not compromise public health, public safety or the Canadian economy”. There is absolutely no mention in the bill of the environment.
    An hon. member: That speaks volumes.
    Mr. Glenn Thibeault: It does, Mr. Speaker.
    New Democrats are not alone in expressing our concerns about this impact. As I said, it is worrisome that there is no mention of the word “environment”. It is also reprehensible. New Democrats will specifically seek to address this in an amendment during the committee stage of the bill's proceedings.
    We have some validators on this. Robyn Benson, president of the Public Service Alliance of Canada, has underscored the importance of ensuring the proper enforcement of health and safety regulations, stating that “Regulations, and their proper enforcement, can literally save lives. But sometimes only a horrific mishap will make the point”. Unfortunately, we recently had a very stark reminder of what can happen when deregulation runs amok with the tragic incident at Lac-Mégantic last summer.

  (1240)  

    The labour movement is not alone in underscoring the importance of regulations that protect the health, safety, and environment of Canadians within the context of the bill. In the lead-up to the introduction of Bill C-21, Laura Jones, from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, who has been quoted numerous times by the other side, stated that rules that are necessary to protect health, promote safety, and protect the environment are important and should not be classified under the definition of red tape.
    What is most concerning about this sloganistic approach to easing the paper burden on small business is that the Conservative and Liberal track records from the past when it comes to safeguarding regulations and standards that protect the health and safety of Canadians have been abysmal.
    As I mentioned earlier, the tragedy in Quebec has put rail safety in Canada back in the spotlight after decades of deregulation by the Liberals and then Conservatives. Largely, this descent into deregulation can be traced back to 1999 when the Liberals further deregulated rail safety by continuing to implement the safety management systems approach adopted by Mulroney's Conservative government. This approach has allowed rail companies to self-regulate rather than requiring them to adhere to operational safety standards jointly established by government and the industry. Unfortunately, we have seen a shocking example of how unchecked deregulation can cut short the lives of dozens of individuals and reek havoc on an entire town in what seemed like the blink of an eye but was really the result of a slow march toward a dangerous self-regulatory approach.
    Further, with its October 2014 budget implementation act, Bill C-4, the Conservatives introduced changes to the labour code that will significantly restrict the powers of health and safety officers in federal workplaces. This is yet again an attack on Canadian workers that could have serious consequences for individuals in the workplace.
    Let me speak briefly as to why the issue of health and safety regulations is so important and why New Democrats believe they should be exempted from the mandate of Bill C-21. In Canada, over 1,000 people fall victim to workplace accidents every year, while a growing number of Canadians are losing their lives or suffering from work-related illnesses. Regrettably, this number has been going up for the past 15 years.
    I think we can all agree in the House that any injury, any death in the workplace, is one too many. Unfortunately, all too often families are left to pick up the pieces when loved ones are suddenly taken away while on the job. No one should ever have to leave their home in the morning wondering whether today is the day they die at work. In our country, three people are killed on the job every working day. Left behind are families and friends devastated by the loss of their loved ones.
    Given the sad reality of how tenuous health and safety conditions continue to be for many of Canada's workers, it begs the question: If the Conservatives are really serious about the health and safety of Canadians, why not explicitly exclude regulations that protect health, safety, and the environment from the application of the bill?
    New Democrats need more than the government's word or the preamble of a bill, which is subject to interpretation. We want assurances that the one-for-one rule would not apply to regulations that impact the health, safety, and environment of Canadians.
    Canada's entrepreneurs are resourceful and innovative by nature. They are well positioned to succeed in the 21st century economy. However, to help them create the jobs we need in Canada, we need to make sure government is providing new entrepreneurs with the services and the supports they need to succeed. For instance, there are a variety of government services to assist businesses, but as the Canadian Chamber of Commerce has pointed out, they are offered by many different governments, different agencies, and different departments. Finding and applying for the right service can also be time consuming, and many small business owners are forced to hire expensive consultants to navigate that bureaucracy. That needs to change. However, Bill C-21 does nothing to address this growing concern.

  (1245)  

    One aspect of this issue, which often gets lost in the conversation around the need to reduce the paper burden, is that dramatic cuts to the public service represent an additional layer of red tape for small business owners as they are forced to wait longer for the answers they need to maintain and grow their businesses.
    New Democrats were staunch opponents to the cuts made by the Conservative government, cuts that have had a major impact not just on our most vulnerable citizens but also on business owners who are placed on hold in what can seem like a never-ending queue. While the Conservatives like to brand themselves as the party that is open for business, their cuts to front-line public services has left a closed sign hanging in the window of government service delivery during precisely the time when small business owners need a leg-up because of the economic downturn. This has left entrepreneurs out in the cold, not to mention the impact it has had on job recovery in our country.
    That is why the bill is such a misnomer. On the one hand, the government is using a sloganistic approach to improving the efficiency of government in responding to the needs of our job creators. Then, on the other hand, it has undermined the ability of the government to deliver services and respond to inquiries from those very same job creators with its reckless public sector cuts. New Democrats believe the government should be focusing on real measures to help small business owners grow their businesses and not just half measures through a self-promotional bill.
    If the Conservatives truly wanted to help small businesses they would not be dragging their feet when it comes to taking real action to curtail the excessive fees credit card issuers charge merchants. Small businesses are being gouged every day. On average, they must pay about $200 or more in fees for every $10,000 processed. Despite dismissing a recent case against Visa and Mastercard, in a rare move the Competition Tribunal called for a regulatory framework to deal with anti-competitive practices. So far, the Conservatives are really only paying lip service to the plight of small merchants by finally admitting that action is needed to lower merchant fees.
    I could talk about the time when I went to the great riding of Winnipeg Centre. My colleague from that great riding and I went out to talk to small business owners in the Forks, which I think is the name of that great little place that is around there. We had business owners trying to track us down to talk to us about their concerns with respect to how much they are having to spend every year, some of them talking about tens of thousands of dollars, just to be able to accept credit cards, and the credit card fees that they have to pay. Some of them have even said they have had to stop taking them, which is having an effect on their businesses. They said they were not hiring people. They were not expanding their businesses because of these fees they were having to pay.

  (1250)  

    Unlike the Conservatives, the New Democrats have common-sense proposals to help merchants, such as creating an independent government body to crack down on the anti-competitive merchant fees that stifle small businesses.
     As well, training is important. As a party, we New Democrats know that smaller businesses do not necessarily have the resources to hire human resources managers to identify training opportunities and programs for staff let alone expertise to apply for government training programs. Training new employees costs time and money, and we sympathize with business owners who do not want to pony up the money to train employees only to have their competitors poach them and reap the rewards of their investment. Canadian business owners need to have the opportunity to have their workforce improved, because we have seen it fall by almost 40% since 1993.
    We have also called for a youth hiring and training tax credit of up to about $4,000 to reward small and medium-sized enterprises that would give our youth their first chances to have well-paying jobs. Eligible businesses hiring Canadians between ages 18 and 25 could get up to about $1,000 for hiring a young employee and another $1,000 to match funds for the training of said employee. This tax credit would double in regions of the country where youth unemployment is highest, up to about $2,000 for each component. That is $4,000.
     In tough regions in the north, such as my riding of Sudbury, we have higher unemployment. I have been talking to many of the small-business owners in my riding, and many are saying that something like this would be a benefit for them. We have three great post-secondary institutions in my riding putting out great graduates: Collège Boréal, Cambrian College, and Laurentian University. This would actually help those graduates get those great-paying jobs.
    Again, noting that this bill, in our opinion, is sloganistic, we really need to find other programs that would work to really help small businesses. It is small businesses, as I mentioned earlier in my speech, that are the economic drivers and the heart of our economy. It is the small and medium-sized enterprises.
    We need access to financing to help small-business owners grow their businesses. We have a strong start-up culture here in Canada, but entrepreneurs find it hard to access the funds they need to grow their business. New Democrats hear every day from experts and business observers that Canada needs a stronger venture capital market and access to more investors to help entrepreneurs grow their innovative ventures into real successes. Unfortunately, too many promising Canadian start-ups are sold off to U.S. investors before they can reach full maturity, because their owners just cannot access the financing to bring them to the next level. Budget 2013 increased taxes on small-business-friendly credit unions by over $200 million. That is money the credit unions could be using to continue to invest in our small businesses.
    The Conservatives are also planning on phasing out their discounted tax treatment for labour-sponsored venture capital funds, which provide a critical source of investment for business owners, especially in Quebec.
    Looking back at all the things we have been talking about that could be done right now to help small business, we have not seen any action by the current government. What the Conservatives have done is bring forward this bill that talks about reducing some of the red tape and the paper burden.
    To conclude, regulations that are in the public interest should be maintained. It is not just a question of managing the number of regulations on the books but of determining which regulations are working for Canadians and which regulations are not working. This is a sound approach. What I am talking about is public administration.
    By not even mentioning the word “environment” in the preamble and in this bill causes us great concern on this side of the House. While of course it is important to protect the Canadian economy and important to ensure that there is health and safety, we cannot have any of those three items without protections for the environment. It talks about the air we breathe and the water we drink and the places we reside. We need to ensure that those protections are put in place.
    While we agree that we want to reduce the administrative burden on small businesses, we really do not have faith that the current Conservative government would do just that. It has a history of deregulation with no regard for the health and safety of Canadians. As I talked about earlier, there has been example after example of that.

  (1255)  

    One of the other things we could do right now is help businesses plan for the next generation in retirement. Entrepreneurs of the baby boomer generation are approaching retirement, and many are unsure of how they will dispose of the businesses they have spent a lifetime building. New Democrats know that entrepreneurs find it difficult to properly value the worth of a business they have poured their hearts and souls into and that finding a buyer who can raise funds to pay the right price can be challenging. A lifetime capital gains exemption protects business owners when they sell their businesses from paying taxes on capital gains of up to $800,000. These earnings will often be the source of retirement funding for many business owners.
     Unfortunately, rules in the tax code can make it cost more for business owners to sell their businesses to members of their own families. Talk about red tape. New Democrats think we should make it easier, not harder, for family business owners to pass on their businesses to their kids. We support examining the tax code to make sure that a business passed from one family member to another has access to the same lifetime capital gains exemption of $800,000 as any other business that is sold. In talking about reducing red tape, we also need to ensure that we are looking at the tax code, something the government has not been talking about.
    I am very pleased to stand and speak to this issue that is very important to our party. As I mentioned, my party knows that small businesses and medium-sized enterprises are the heart of our economy and are the job creators in this country. If we can find ways of reducing red tape while protecting our economy, our health and safety, and the environment, that is what New Democrats would propose.
Mr. Dan Albas (Parliamentary Secretary to the President of the Treasury Board, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, welcome back, and welcome to everyone in this place.
    I want to thank the member opposite for his speech today. Obviously he spent some time discussing small business with his constituents and hopefully with others, which is a good thing. What I question is whether he has studied the bill. This is about administrative compliance: the time, the planning, the effort it takes to demonstrate compliance with government regulation. There is nothing in the one-for-one rule or in this piece of legislation that would compromise health, safety, or the environment for Canadians.
    It is a curious pattern. The NDP continue to advocate that it is behind small business, but when we brought in temporary hiring credits for small business, its members opposed them. When we brought forward lifetime capital gains, which the member spoke about, we increased it, and they opposed it. When we indexed it last year, they opposed it.
    As to introducing measures such as a mandatory minimum wage, federally, of $15, I wonder if the member has consulted with his constituents and small business across this country, because it sounds to me like the bromides he tries to pass in this place and onto others seem to be far divorced from reality.
Mr. Glenn Thibeault:  
    Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank my hon. colleague for the question and welcome him back to Parliament as well. I find it very interesting that I am talking about the preamble of the bill, where there is mention of protecting the Canadian economy and that we must not compromise public health or public safety, but there is no mention of the environment. There is concern among a majority of Canadians. When we are talking about reality, the Conservatives and my hon. colleague need to speak to Canadians about the importance they place on the environment. When there is nothing in the bill to make sure that we are going to protect the environment, that is very concerning.
    The member also talked about the hiring credit and the EI change they announced last week. It was the New Democratic party that took the government to task for cancelling it. All of a sudden, the Conservatives realized that by cancelling it they had made a huge mistake, which impacted small businesses, and then they scrambled to reintroduce something. It is the New Democratic Party that continues to talk to small businesses. It is this party that listens to small businesses and makes sure that we are talking about policies that will actually help them continue to grow.

  (1300)  

Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, the more I listen to this debate, the more I come to the conclusion that the NDP is probably the only real friend small businesses have in this country. People should be judged by what they do, not by what they say.
    I am proud to say that in my province of Manitoba, we are in our fourth majority government. The small business tax in my province, when we took over in 1999, was 11%. Every year thereafter, we lowered the small business tax by 1% to 10%, 9%, 8%, 7%, and 6%, until now. Now the small business tax in the socialist paradise of Manitoba is 0%. That is putting our money where our mouth is.
    If the Conservatives really believe that they want to stimulate small businesses, why are they hitting them with these punitive taxes? The Conservatives cut corporate tax rates religiously every chance they get, to where it is well below the OECD average, but they leave the small business tax at a punitive 11%.
    The two things the Conservatives have announced recently, including a cutback in EI premiums, are not out of their wallet. They do not put one cent into the EI fund. The EI fund is entirely made up of contributions from employers and employees. Not one penny comes from the federal government. When it gives a few nickels of that back to small businesses, it is hardly coming out of its pocket.
     This regulatory proposal the Conservatives are making is not a cost factor either. If they want to put their money where their mouth is, come to us with a dramatic reduction in taxes for small businesses. That is something the NDP has already demonstrated. We support it, and we do it.
The Deputy Speaker:  
    I am not sure there was a question in there, but the member for Sudbury has the opportunity to comment.
Mr. Glenn Thibeault:  
    Mr. Speaker, I heard many questions in there.
    I would like to thank my hon. colleague for his comments, and I am happy to respond to them. I have been able to work with my hon. colleague for the last six years on many files. Of course, small business is one we have always talked about, especially when it relates to the credit card file.
    There are so many small businesses in my hon. colleague's riding that he has been very vocal with me about on numerous occasions, because they go to him. He then comes to me, and we work to try to find ways of helping them resolve the issue of the fees they have to pay.
    I will not be specific, but when a small-business owner, a restaurant owner, from my colleague's riding comes up to me and says that the business is spending $20,000 a year on fees to credit card companies—
Mr. Pat Martin:  
    Good grief.
Mr. Glenn Thibeault:  
    Mr. Speaker, exactly. Good grief.
    As that person said, they do not expand the business. They do not hire other people, because they have to pay those fees.
    We have brought this issue to the government numerous times, and what has it come up with? It has come up with a voluntary code of conduct that is full of loopholes. It is absolutely full of loopholes. The government refuses to address it.
     The Competition Tribunal went through the whole process and punted it back to this place. It said that we, as parliamentarians, need to make a decision on this. Do members know when that was? That was in July 2013. We have waited over a year, and we still do not see any action.
    What we see today is that we are going to start looking at one-for-one and we are going to start looking at reducing red tape. We can all agree on that. Really what we need to agree on is making sure that we are not taking away regulations that are protecting Canadians' health and safety, the economy, and the environment.
    The Conservatives continue to make cuts to the public service and say that now they have a problem with small business owners, because they keep calling and have to wait in line. Stop cutting the public service so that we can deliver the services that businesses and Canadians need.

[Translation]

Ms. Hélène LeBlanc (LaSalle—Émard, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, I want to thank my colleague, the small business critic, for his speech. I found it quite interesting that 20 minutes was not enough time for him to talk about all the NDP's proposals, when it took the Minister of State for Small Business and Tourism, and Agriculture only 10 minutes to talk about the government's file on small businesses. I think that is absolutely appalling.
    I am the critic for co-operatives. Co-operatives are businesses. Over the past few years, this government has eliminated any assistance that was available to these small co-operatives, including start-up programs. One of the problems small businesses are facing is that the government is not there to ensure they have the right measures and conditions they need to become medium-sized businesses and create even more jobs, prosperity and wealth for Canada.
    I would like my colleague to say a few words about the government's rather gloomy record when it comes to co-operatives, which are businesses, and also about how difficult it is for small businesses to become medium-sized and large businesses in Canada.

  (1305)  

[English]

Mr. Glenn Thibeault:  
    Mr. Speaker, I have had the opportunity as the small business critic to meet with many of the co-operative organizations across the country that want to be more engaged by the government. They want to be active participants. They are active participants in the economy, but they are not perceived or seen by the Conservative government as contributors.
    When we talk about proposals for small businesses, such as the youth hiring tax credit, the elimination and reduction of a lot of the merchant fees, ensuring that people can transfer their businesses from family member to family member without having to go through all of the taxes that come with that, the government refuses to listen. We are proposing ideas that will help save small businesses and co-operatives money now and keep the money in their pockets. By doing that, they will reinvest in their businesses and co-operatives and bring more people in together.
    I think of Eat Local, which is a great food co-operative in Sudbury. It is getting more and more members now who continue to invest in the business. As they invest in the business, more and more small businesses go into the small business. What happens? We create jobs and we grow the economy.

[Translation]

Mrs. Djaouida Sellah (Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, I want to begin by welcoming all my colleagues back to the House. I hope this return to Parliament is more productive than previous ones have been.
    I will be sharing my time with the hon. member for Pontiac.
    I have the honour to speak on this first day back to Bill C-21, An Act to control the administrative burden that regulations impose on businesses. The bill introduced here at second reading stage is a good idea insofar as it claims to cut red tape for SME's.
    I want to remind hon. members that in April, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business said that after taxes, red tape was the second biggest concern of small business owners.
    The one-for-one rule included in this bill tells businesses that every time a new administrative burden is placed on them, another will be lifted. That is a start. The bill is telling them that the administrative burden will not become greater in future. However, this rule still needs to be applied effectively, fairly and transparently.
    However, like many of this Conservative government's bills, this one falls short of the mark. Government regulations to protect the health, safety and environment of Canadians should be a priority. This bill seems to completely disregard that obligation.
    We need more than the government's promises and the preamble of a bill that could leave room for interpretation. We want to be assured that deregulation will not apply to these regulations.
    On the one hand, the government wants to seem co-operative by introducing a bill like this, and on the other hand, its actions show that all it does is keep piling on administrative measures, whether it is through personal income tax measures or through various government programs that never reach their targets.
    Last of all, this bill provides for a five-year review. This will result in a new administrative burden.
    We believe in reducing the paper burden and in sensible solutions, but we need more than half-measures in a gimmicky bill, because small businesses are the drivers of entrepreneurship in our country. However, because of their limited resources, small businesses feel the weight of the administrative burden more than other businesses.
    This summer, I had the opportunity to meet with the owners of small and medium-sized businesses in the riding of Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert. If it were also to meet with them, the government would realize that this bill is deficient. The owners told me that there is a real lack of co-operation among the different levels of government.
    We know that this Conservative government finds it difficult to get along with its provincial and municipal counterparts. We have seen this from the beginning of its mandate. It is a serious problem.
    SMEs must sometimes fill out federal and provincial forms. We need an agreement to make things easier. They should not have to fill out the same form twice and send it to different places based on different criteria. Small businesses told me that this is a real waste of time. They all agree that they have been squeezed by bank charges this year and that their profits have plummeted.

  (1310)  

    They sometimes even have to reconsider their decision to go into business. This goes for SMEs that have been in business for several years and those that are just getting started. Banking fees have gotten so high that SMEs have no choice but to take them into account. Today, people no longer pay with cash. It has become common to make small purchases with a debit or credit card. However, such transactions cost money; business owners must pay a percentage. That percentage has a serious impact. It considerably reduces profit margins and available funds that could have been reinvested in the local economy to hire a new employee or expand a store, for example.
    The government says that it is prepared to help SMEs, but it does not go far enough. To date, the NDP is the only federal party to propose real solutions to this problem. We proposed regulating the fees that credit card companies charge merchants by creating an ombudsman position. Obviously, the Conservative government rejected this proposal, as usual.
     Red tape is not the only thing that small business owners come to me about. They also regularly tell me that the Conservatives boast about helping small businesses, but that they did not renew the hiring credit for small business. It was not even included in budget 2014. However, SMEs have been clear that this hiring credit is important. It allows them to build their businesses and create dependable jobs.
    SMEs get very little attention from the Conservative government. Perhaps the government needs to be reminded that there is a direct correlation between red tape and the long-term prosperity of these SMEs.
    Unnecessary red tape puts a wrench in the smooth flow of trade and limits the exchange of goods and services that is the lifeblood of a healthy economy. However, as we know, this Conservative government would rather give billions of dollars in tax cuts to big businesses than help SMEs, which support our communities.
    The NDP knows that small business owners work really hard. They create good jobs across the country and we believe that they deserve a break.
    I support this bill at second reading. However, measures must be added to improve it and particularly to ensure that it meets the requirements of our entrepreneurs.

  (1315)  

Mr. Raymond Côté (Beauport—Limoilou, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague from Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert for her speech.
    I want to talk about the content of the bill. In clause 2, “administrative burden” is defined as follows:
    2. ...“administrative burden” means anything that is necessary to demonstrate compliance with a regulation, including the collecting, processing, reporting and retaining of information and the completing of forms.
    This shows the huge disconnect between the government's intentions—or so-called intentions—and reality. My colleague was right to mention small businesses and the hassles associated with the changes to EI, which have created huge headaches for many small business owners. These owners are finding it virtually impossible to manage their staff, which adds considerably to their burden.
    I would like to know how confident my colleague is in how the government will implement this bill, regardless of what form it takes.
Mrs. Djaouida Sellah:  
    Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague from Beauport—Limoilou for his relevant question.
    As I mentioned, I work hands-on in my riding of Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert. I have met with and listened to owners of small and medium-sized businesses. In response to my colleague's question, I will share the story of a family-owned grocery store. The store owner told me that the situation had become unbelievable.
    He told me that he did not have much cash on hand. Furthermore, his wife had to spend time filling out cumbersome forms in the office, for which she was not even paid. This cut into his business's profits. He said that all levels of government should agree on a single form in order to reduce red tape. I told him that the NDP is listening and would improve the situation.
Mrs. Anne-Marie Day (Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, businesses and young business owners are the key to Canada's economic prosperity. Under the Conservative government, the manufacturing sector is struggling and has lost some of its lustre. A number of manufacturing companies, such as Electrolux, have lost employees and had to shut down.
    What measures is the NDP putting forward to support SMEs in the near future and as of 2015?

  (1320)  

Mrs. Djaouida Sellah:  
    Mr. Speaker, I am delighted to answer that question. I will talk about the NDP's sensible, tangible solutions that will make things better for SMEs.
    We want to reinstate the hiring credit for small businesses, cut taxes for SMEs, cap hidden fees for credit card transactions and create a tax credit for hiring and training young people. Better access to credit for SME owners will help those businesses grow. We want to make it easier for parents to transfer family businesses to their children, cut red tape, create tax credits to reduce the toll of payroll taxes and encourage SMEs to innovate.
Mr. Mathieu Ravignat (Pontiac, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, my interest in this bill is twofold because I am the official opposition's Treasury Board critic and the member for a riding that relies heavily on small and medium-sized businesses to create jobs.
    This year I had the tremendous privilege and pleasure of touring several such businesses in municipalities like Chelsea, Wakefield and Shawville. I even toured a number of pharmacies to talk about the drug shortage. It was great to consult with business people in my region. They agree that we need to cut red tape, but not necessarily via the approach in this bill.
    As an MP, of course I believe in the principle of red tape reduction, which will reduce administrative hassles for business people. However, as the official opposition's Treasury Board critic, I have serious concerns about this bill. As is often the case with the Conservatives' bills, it seems that their almost religious zeal for defending the free market as they see it at any cost has led them to conceal in this bill their intention to eliminate regulations that protect my constituents' health, safety and environment. In light of the listeriosis crises and the Lac-Mégantic tragedy, we need this government to guarantee that it will do more to protect and regulate Canadians' health and safety.
    Regulations that are in the public interest should remain in place. This bill jeopardizes them because it gives the President of the Treasury Board the power to eliminate such regulations under the guise of reducing paperwork for businesses. That is obviously not the way to achieve sound public administration.
    It is true that the NDP wants to reduce the administrative burden borne by small businesses, but we do not want to do so at the expense of Canadians' safety. We cannot trust the Conservatives, who have a tendency to deregulate without considering safety, health or the environment.
    It is not just a question of managing the number of regulations, but of determining which ones are helping Canadians. This means carrying out a proper study, which is a reasonable approach to public administration.
    Only the preamble of the bill states that the regulations affecting the health and safety of Canadians will not be affected. We all know that the legislation that will govern these regulations has no preamble. No mention is made of the environment in the entire bill. If the Conservatives really care about the health and safety of Canadians, why did they not specifically guarantee the application of the bill and the regulations that protect their health and safety?
    I would remind my colleagues in the House of some important facts about this government's tendency to let things slide when it comes to the health and safety of Canadians. The Conservatives do not have a good track record in terms of preserving these regulations.
    For instance, last year, the Minister of Transport allowed an exemption to the Canadian Aviation Regulations for the air carrier WestJet. WestJet planes will now be able to operate with one flight attendant per 50 passengers rather than according to the standard of one flight attendant per 40 passengers. Other airlines have since asked for similar exemptions. The NDP has asked that the 1:40 rule be maintained, which is reasonable.
    In 1999, the Liberals, who are no better, persisted with the Mulroney government's deregulation of rail safety by continuing to implement the safety management systems approach, which was maintained by the Conservatives. This approach leaves it up to the industry itself to ensure that its operations are safe, instead of ensuring that the government works with the industry to set safety standards that should be followed. Basically, it is self-regulation. The goal of any business is to make a profit.

  (1325)  

    That resulted in many derailments throughout the country.
    In addition, the Conservatives used the budget implementation bill, Bill C-4, to make changes to the Canada Labour Code, and those changes will gut the powers of health and safety officers in federal workplaces. It is unacceptable to compromise the health and safety of workers.
    It is clear that the Conservative President of the Treasury Board should not be given discretionary powers over our laws and regulations that govern our constituents' health, environment and safety.
    It is hard to believe that the Conservatives are sincere about wanting to reduce red tape. They did the exact opposite with the building Canada fund. Instead of helping municipalities and small businesses start infrastructure projects in a timely manner, the Conservatives set up a long and cumbersome bureaucratic process for every project worth more than $100 million. That will create 6- to 18-month delays that will slow down important projects.
    They did the same thing with their so-called employment insurance reform, which requires that employers provide more and more information about their employees. In addition, small and medium-sized business are not really getting any help.
    For example, the Conservatives are dragging their feet when it comes to taking serious action to regulate anti-competitive credit card fees that merchants must pay to card issuers. If the Conservatives really wanted to help SMEs, they would have supported the NDP's idea to have an ombudsman to control the credit card fees that card issuers charge merchants. It was a simple and reasonable solution, but it was rejected.
    This bill cannot be taken seriously. The principle behind it is good, but it is unclear whether it will achieve the expected results.

[English]

    What we really need to do for small businesses is to identify what does not make sense in the system and eliminate it. That is a simple study. The one-for-one rule is too vague, and there is no guarantee that it is going to work.
    We also have to stop giving lip service to small and medium-size businesses and actually help them out, for example, by restoring the small business hiring tax credit for young people; reducing taxes for small businesses specifically, not the corporate tax rate for the largest and most successful businesses in this country; cracking down on hidden credit card transaction fees; and perhaps redefining what a small and medium-size business is for government procurement contracts.
     I do not know if members realize this, but small- and medium-size businesses are defined as 500 employees and less. I would approximate that, in my riding, the average number of employees that small and medium-size businesses have is 25. Therefore, it is completely unreasonable to expect a company with 25 employees to compete with the supposed small and medium-size business with 499 employees. It does not make any sense. There is no sensitivity built into the system regarding profit margins, the size of staff, et cetera.
    We could talk about the service agreement between merchants and credit card companies that profit small business owners by directly passing on these fees to consumers. This increases the price of goods on everything. Despite dismissing a recent case against Visa and Mastercard, in a rare move, the Competition Tribunal called for a regulatory framework to deal with anti-competitive practices.
    We could also create a new tax credit for businesses that hire and train young people, and financing to help small business owners grow their business. We could make it easier for parents to pass family businesses to their kids, create tax credits to offset payroll taxes, and help small businesses innovate, et cetera. In the agricultural sector, we could perhaps do something about risk capital and high interest rates for acquiring new agricultural lands.
    It is clear that on this side of the equation, we are proposing sensible, concrete, realistic means of truly helping our small and medium-size businesses to create jobs that are desperately needed in our country.

  (1330)  

[Translation]

Ms. Hélène LeBlanc (LaSalle—Émard, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague for his speech.
    He mentioned something that struck me. He talked about what we consider to be small and medium-sized businesses. The independent business people that we talk to often say that they hate the fact that the government is not looking at the issue the right way and truly taking small and medium-sized businesses into account when it makes regulations. In Canada, we have a lot of what are referred to as microbusinesses. I want to come back to co-operatives, since I am my party's critic for co-operatives.
    We can make the same criticism of the government when it comes to co-operatives. As far as regulations are concerned, the government does not take the co-operatives' needs into account when it is creating programs. The government says that co-operatives are considered when these programs are established, but I think the Conservatives are totally ignoring what the co-operatives really need.
    My colleague indicated that a business with 500 employees has the resources to deal with certain regulations, but a microbusiness or a self-employed worker does not have the resources to meet these demands. I would like the hon. member to elaborate on this very astute comment on this shortcoming in the regulations.
Mr. Mathieu Ravignat:  
    Mr. Speaker, I want to thank my colleague for her excellent question.
    Like me, she knows that this country has never had a social democratic government at the federal level. We have had that good fortune provincially, however. In Manitoba, for instance, the tax rate for small and medium-sized businesses is 0%.
    It is a balancing act. This government is a friend to big corporations, as were the previous Liberal governments. The wind of change needs to blow through to help small and medium-sized businesses and co-operatives at the federal level. We need to take another look at the system to ensure that there is true competition when it comes to federal procurement contracts. Unfortunately, it is always the same people who win. This government supports big corporate welfare. It is too bad, because the vast majority of jobs in this country are created by small and medium-sized businesses.
Mrs. Djaouida Sellah (Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, I would like to ask my colleague the following question.
    We are well aware that the Conservatives boast about helping small businesses by eliminating this so-called red tape. However, they did not renew the hiring credit for small business.
    What does my colleague think about the Conservative government's approach to this issue?
Mr. Mathieu Ravignat:  
    Mr. Speaker, I find it unfortunate. Is this what we expected from the Conservatives? The answer is yes. Does this surprise me? The answer is no. We proposed specific solutions to help small and medium-sized businesses. They were reasonable solutions, but they were rejected.
    It is hard to understand. I know that there are members on the other side of the House who own small and medium-sized businesses. However, the government has eyes only for big corporations like SNC-Lavalin, the big oil companies and the big farming companies in western Canada. They are what the government cares about most. That means that the government is not prepared to help small and medium-sized businesses become more competitive.

  (1335)  

[English]

Hon. Gerry Byrne (Humber—St. Barbe—Baie Verte, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, I will be sharing my time with the hon. member for Winnipeg North in his debut speech since noon today.
    I do not think the irony will be lost on anyone that this bill would enable the government to craft a set of regulations about regulating regulations. With regard to the statute proposed in Bill C-21, everyone should be very clear there would be no statutory effect. The bill is about a policy. It affects a policy; it creates no statutory effect. I say that because subclause 8(1) of the bill clearly states:
    No action or other proceeding may be brought against Her Majesty in right of Canada for anything done or omitted to be done, or for anything purported to be done or omitted to be done, under this Act.
    It goes on to say in subclause 8(2):
    No regulation is invalid by reason only of a failure to comply with this Act.
    There is absolutely no enforcement mechanism. There are no teeth whatsoever behind this bill. What we are doing on the floor of the House of Commons on the very first day of the fall session is debating the creation of a policy, not a statute.
    With that as the backdrop, let us talk about what this policy would do.
    Its purpose is to reduce the administrative burden on businesses. We know that most regulations on the conduct of normal business will affect businesses, so this is a policy that would affect the regular practice of business. However, it goes beyond that. It would impact things that may not necessarily be front and centre or top of mind with us as parliamentarians.
    It would affect the management of fisheries and the environment. It is not just the industry department, the finance department, or the Canada Revenue Agency that this measure would impact. We have to be very clear that it would impact the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and how it regulates the inspection and regulation of food products. It would affect Health Canada with pharmaceutical products and other health products. It would affect the Department of Fisheries and Oceans as to how it manages our coastal and inland fisheries. It would affect a whole range of different departments. It would affect the Department of Natural Resources in the regulation of the mining sector.
    With that said, this is a policy that is meant to reduce the number of regulations affecting all departments within the Government of Canada. It is not just the Canada Revenue Agency, the industry department, and a few of what would traditionally be viewed as the more business-oriented departments, because there is no department of the Government of Canada that does not impact the conduct of Canadian business across the board.
    In responding to one of my questions, the hon. minister pointed out that 2,300 regulations have already been taken off the books since 2007. Most Canadians and certainly all parliamentarians should know that the catalogue of regulations in Canada is in the tens of thousands. Tomes and tomes of regulations exist.
    The idea is to take down one regulation for every regulation that is brought in. It is basically about motivation, about trying to motivate government to do something about red tape.
    Here is an equally effective strategy, and perhaps a better one: why not just cull the existing regulations? Here is where this bill falls a bit short. The committee that studies the bill really needs to dig into this aspect. The Government of Canada already has many volumes of regulations on the books, so the presumption of any reasonable and fair-minded Canadian would be that it is going to be tough on the government to bring in a new regulation because it will really have to scratch heads, think hard, and figure out what regulation it is going to eliminate.

  (1340)  

    We have many tomes of existing regulation that is redundant without being culled. The government could simply pick one and remove it. That would meet the policy requirements that it proposes to enact with this supposed legislation, with this statutory instrument.
    That is the key here, so is this really more about a communications exercise? Is it somewhat of a smoke-and-mirrors game for the government to try to look like it is doing something when it really is not doing a whole lot?
    Is there merit behind this concept? There is, absolutely. The government is proving that with its own former regulatory red tape commission. The commission took seven years to come up with all of this. It was seven years of bureaucracy, seven years of spending, seven years of studying, and this is what it came up with.
    Yes, there is a lot of fat out there. There is a lot of fat in this government. There is a lot of fat that the Conservatives just did not bother to tackle. They have come up with this statutory policy that has no effect whatsoever in law, since there is no liability or consequence to the government for not following its own legislation. It is a bill that regulates regulation.
    Here we are debating a policy on the floor of the House of Commons on the very first day that we are back for the fall session, and we have already come to the conclusion that it really does not do a whole lot.
    What I also find kind of funny is that I did not want to see this bill in the budget implementation act because budget implementation acts should simply be about budgets, but when we consider all the stuff that went into the Conservative government's implementation act that had nothing to do with the well-being of businesses or the economy, an argument might be made that perhaps this particular legislation might have been able to be folded into the budget implementation act. I would not agree with it, because I think budget implementation acts should be strictly about budgets.
    However, that said, this bill was read on the floor of the House of Commons on January 29 of this year. We have not heard a word about it since, and we have actually passed the budget. After seven years of spending on the red tape commission and adding to the bureaucracy, if one is trying to get a signal or cue as to whether or not this is more about a communications exercise to show that this legislation to regulate regulations is a good thing, one need not look any further than that. That is what this is all about today.
    What would be the most effective answer in dealing with red tape and government regulations? It would be to go through them one by one and cull any one that does not really have meaning or value. That would be the best and cheapest option, and administratively it would be the simplest and most efficient one. Quite frankly, the government could do it if it wanted to, but now there is this elaborate exercise attached to all of it to posture and create reports and add to the bureaucracy.
    Our caucus is looking forward to getting this bill into committee to study some of these issues.
    Coming from Newfoundland and Labrador, I will end with something that is very important to me. The Department of Fisheries and Oceans manages our coastal resources and all of our oceans almost exclusively through the use of regulation. If the government is suggesting that for every regulation it brings in it must reduce regulations by one, will government experts and outside experts be allowed into the committee room to analyze whether there might be unforeseen consequences that would actually reduce the ability of the government to do what is in the best interest of Canadians and our resources and our economy and whether this smoke-and-mirrors public relations exercise might actually cause a lot of harm?

  (1345)  

[Translation]

Mr. Raymond Côté (Beauport—Limoilou, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank my colleague from the third party for his speech.
    We have to admit that the Liberals were pretty good at using smoke and mirrors. Take for example the issue of climate change. The only practical measure that the Liberals took was to name a dog “Kyoto”. That is their track record.
    I would like my colleague to explain the Liberals' decisions with regard to protecting the health and safety of Canadians. During their 13 years in office, the Liberals managed to dismantle the regulatory framework around rail safety by implementing safety management systems in the wake of the Mulroney Conservatives.
    Given that the issue of Canadians' health and safety is addressed in the preamble rather than in the body of the bill, there are no real guarantees in this regard.
    Can my Liberal colleague show that he is serious about the questions he is asking about this bill, given that his government did not have a very good track record during its 13 years in office?

[English]

Hon. Gerry Byrne:  
    Mr. Speaker, the hon. member from the former fourth party made an interesting point. He signals clearly to the Canadian public, and specifically to the House, that if the NDP had its way, it would engage in a massive re-regulation exercise. This is a policy point that the NDP announced during its caucus meeting. It said that it would be announcing its platform in the coming weeks, if not sooner.
     We look forward to hearing the NDP's position on exactly which federal entities, which federal agencies, which federal activities it would re-regulate in such a massive way.

[Translation]

Mrs. Anne-Marie Day (Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, in his speech, the member asked why we do not simply get rid of all these regulations. The Liberals contributed to the deregulation in Lac-Mégantic. That happened to us, in Quebec; it did not happen where he lives. That caused such a mess, with such serious consequences.
    Regulations are often needed to ensure the safety and protection of the public. Deregulation and special treatment for certain companies can jeopardize public protection.
    How does the member plan to get out of this quicksand? Can he tell us how he sees these things?

[English]

Hon. Gerry Byrne:  
    Mr. Speaker, I take a certain amount of umbrage in the fact that the NDP is already telling us and Canadians that the Liberal Party of Canada is about to form the next government. When we were in that position, the member asked what we would do to certain policies, regulations and statutes. That is a pretty telltale sign of where the NDP is going.
    This bill is about eliminating other regulations. What I heard from the New Democratic Party is that it is supporting this legislation. One minute those members are talking about a terrible thing being done, and we all agree there was a terrible tragedy, but they are pairing that with a regulatory system. They are saying that the regulatory system is the ultimate cause that we should be debating, but they are also saying that they support the legislation.
     Does anyone else see the irony in all of this? Does anyone else see how ridiculous the New Democratic Party's positioning has been as it desperately tries to get itself out of the quicksand of its polling numbers of recent months?

  (1350)  

Mr. Kevin Lamoureux (Winnipeg North, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, it is with pleasure that I follow the Liberal Party critic. He has hit the nail head-on in addressing this issue.
    It is important that we recognize that the current government, probably more than any other government, has its way of putting a Conservative spin on messaging. The member was right on when he made reference to the type of messaging that the government was hoping to achieve here. There is the bill, “red tape reduction act”, that they tie to small businesses, as if the government really wants to do something to assist small businesses in Canada.
    All we have to do is look at the last six months or so to see the disaster the government has made for small businesses in one program, the temporary foreign worker program. We see the devastation that has caused. MPs from the Prairies would surely to goodness recognize the damage that has been caused to small businesses because of the government's inability and incompetence in administering one program. It is not a government that has been friendly to small businesses. It is a government that now says it wants to deal with reducing red tape. There is no doubt a great appetite from Canadians to see the reduction of bureaucracy. We all want to see red tape disappear where it can, so the Conservatives understand how important it is to appeal to that sector of society that loves to hear about reducing red tape.
     We too believe there is some merit in reducing red tape. We do not necessarily need legislation to mandate the reduction of red tape, as the critic has pointed out. Why not go through a review of the many different thousands of regulations that are in place today and look at ways in which we can reduce red tape and regulation? There is no doubt that we can do a lot in reducing red tape, and we would encourage that where it is feasible to do so. We see that as a positive thing.
    However, the Conservatives are saying they are going to reduce red tape, thereby helping small businesses. They are trying to make that connection so they can give the impression they are a friend to small businesses. There are numerous problems within the small business industry and we are not giving it the amount of attention it should receive to help small businesses grow and prosper.
     At the end of the day, when we talk about job creation and the importance of the middle class and what we need to be doing in Ottawa to enable our middle class to grow and prosper and have hope again, we should talk, at least in part, about ways in which we can support small businesses. The small businesses, looking forward into the future, are part of the backbone to our Canadian economy. If we want to create and generate jobs, the greatest number of potential jobs that can be created is through our small businesses. We should be looking at what we are doing to help facilitate those job numbers. The government has not done well in private sector, small business types of jobs. It has been negligent on that particular file.
    There is a great level of difficulty for small businesses, including everything from registering the name, to looking into setting up a facility, wherever it might be in the country, to registering with Revenue Canada or getting an understanding of employment insurance and the many different benefits that have be paid into.

  (1355)  

    There is so much more we could do to support our small businesses. Imagine a small business that employs three or four people trying to understand the bureaucracy and regulations. It is more than just federal regulations. There are provincial and municipal regulations as well. It is endless in terms of the types of things we need to see addressed to assist our small businesses to do what they do best, which is to deliver a service, to provide a product, or from my perspective, to create a job. Small businesses across Canada from coast to coast to coast create opportunities and valuable jobs. That should be the focus.
    The idea behind this bill is that the government says if it brings in a regulation, it will take away a regulation. As the Liberal Party critic has suggested, there are thousands of pieces of regulations out there that if properly reviewed, could be dealt with.
    However, there are other important things with which we should be dealing. What about the idea of closer regulatory alignments with the U.S. in certain areas? The international trade between Canada and the U.S. and the automobile industry is an example. There has been some success, but no doubt there could even be a great deal more, for example, regulating emissions from vehicles. The amount of trade between Canada and the U.S. related to automobiles, parts and so forth is immense. We are talking about hundreds of millions of dollars. Are there things we could do to improve upon and ensure there is a closer regulatory alignment? I would suggest there is.
    We should put more attention in that area as opposed to introducing legislation that is fairly bland, as the critic has pointed out. There is no real teeth to it. It is more of a policy statement. In reality, it is more of a political stand that originated out of the Prime Minister's Office, which is more interested in trying to give a false impression that the government is sympathetic to small businesses. To give that impression, it says that it wants to reduce regulation.
    We can reduce regulation and we do not necessarily need legislation to reduce that regulation. We want the government to recognize that we need to do more real, tangible things that would allow for our small businesses from coast to coast to coast the opportunity to grow.
    If we see, through budgets, policy and legislation, things that would help or assist, then we would see valuable jobs being created and other economic opportunities and prosperity.
The Deputy Speaker:  
    The hon. member for Winnipeg North will have one minute when the debate on the bill resumes.

STATEMENTS BY MEMBERS

[Statements by Members]

[English]

Canadian Delegation to Israel

Mr. Bob Zimmer (Prince George—Peace River, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, it is good to be back.
    On July 9, as I was travelling as a member of a parliamentary delegation to Israel, we were escorted to a bomb shelter as we toured the Tower of David Museum. Rockets fired from Gaza, by Hamas, were overhead and landing nearby. It was an eye-opening experience for all of us, and it showed us what the people of Jerusalem have to go through on a daily basis to be safe in their own city. It is something that we surely will not forget.
    I wish to thank our hosts, David Cooper and J. J. Schneiderman, from the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs, and Mark Waldman of the Canadian Jewish Political Affairs Committee, for their hospitality, and for making us feel safe during a very troubling conflict.
    Today I want to restate Canada's support for the state of Israel, and I pray that one day the Holy Land will know a permanent and lasting peace.

  (1400)  

Cycling Infrastructure Strategy

Ms. Peggy Nash (Parkdale—High Park, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, cycling is an affordable, emission-free mode of transportation that has the added benefit of encouraging physical fitness. Cities that support cycling benefit by reducing vehicle traffic, which improves air quality and eases gridlock, a problem that costs my home city of Toronto an estimated $6 billion a year.
    Yesterday, I joined hundreds of Toronto cyclists at Bikestock. It was a ride to city hall to call for improved cycling infrastructure and better safety for cyclists and the motorists with whom they share the road. This is why today I have submitted a motion calling on the federal government to create a cycling infrastructure strategy and a plan to assist regions and communities.
    It is time for the government to recognize the many benefits of cycling and to show national leadership. I urge all members to support this motion.

Cycling

Mr. John Weston (West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast—Sea to Sky Country, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I rise today to highlight the huge and positive impact that cycling has on our environment, our economy, and our health, at every stroke.
    I rode last week in the GranFondo, from Vancouver to Whistler, where people like Richard Wooles and Corey Tracey of the B.C. cycling association were on hand with organizer Neil McKinnon.
    I was reminded that cycling lowers health care costs and increases revenues from bike tourism. The mayor of Whistler predicted that Whistler would receive $8 million from the fondo.
    Cycling brings communities together, like those who gathered together in Ottawa this morning for the Pedal for Kids event. Sponsored by Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities, Pedal for Kids is an annual five-day fundraiser in which participants cover 500 kilometres on bikes, from Ottawa to Quebec City. Its purpose is to encourage kids to get active in sport.
    Encouraging Canadians to get more active is one of the reasons that Canada Bikes and I expanded Bike Day on the Hill last May to become Bike Day in Canada. It is an attempt to increase the profile of cycling as a national agenda issue.
    Canadians, let us get together and roll on.

George Gate

Mr. Francis Scarpaleggia (Lac-Saint-Louis, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, this past summer, the world of swimming lost a true giant. It was in Pointe-Claire, Quebec, for over three decades, at what was Canada's first indoor Olympic-sized pool, that George Gate, as head coach and then aquatics director, built the city's swim team into the powerhouse it remains to this day.
    It is testimony to his unique gift as a coach and mentor that in addition to his success with swimmers, George built Pointe-Claire's diving program into one of the sport's finest.
    George's vision was comprehensive, communitarian, and inclusive. He focused not only on elite athletes, but also promoted the benefits of aquatics for other aspects of life. He was a pioneer in water safety, lessons for novice swimmers and the disabled, and fitness for the elderly and those in rehabilitation.
    As a citizen of the world, George was a decorated war veteran who saw action with the British Royal Navy in the north Atlantic, the Pacific, and in the British convoys to Russia.
    I ask all members of the House to join me in expressing our heartfelt condolences to George's daughters, Brenda and Diane, and sons, Bill and Richard.

Legalization of Marijuana

Mr. Terence Young (Oakville, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, the Liberal leader theorizes that the only way to keep marijuana out of the hands of children is to legalize it and regulate it.
    Let us look at a highly regulated substance: alcohol. CAMH says that over 25% of our youth in grades 7 through 12 are binge drinkers, as are over 40% aged 20 to 24. Approximately 8% will become addicted to alcohol. Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death among 15- to 20-year-olds, with alcohol being a factor in half of those deaths.
    How is regulation really working for our youth? Canadians are supposed to believe that if the Liberals sold marijuana in stores, drug dealers would experience an epiphany, obey the regulations, throw in the towel, and stop selling dope.
    In addition to their leader, “the pied piper of pot”, pro-marijuana Liberals include the “cannabis queen”, Jodie Emery, a Liberal nomination candidate in Vancouver East, and Liberal Party CFO, Chuck Rifici, who made millions selling his shares in his medical marijuana company.
    Liberals want to be the party party. Unfortunately, they do not seem to care that legalizing marijuana would be abandoning the health and welfare of Canadian youth.

  (1405)  

[Translation]

Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

Mrs. Djaouida Sellah (Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, this Saturday, my south shore colleagues and I led a day of action regarding the future of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.
    I would like to commend the support shown by my constituents, especially the many volunteers who came out despite the cold and the rain. I am very proud of the Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert riding's record. We gathered over 700 signatures.
    This shows that Canadians care about our public broadcaster and they are prepared to take action to save it from the budget cuts imposed by the Conservative government.
    We love the CBC and we will continue to defend it against attacks from the Conservative government.

[English]

Visitors from Australia

Mr. Royal Galipeau (Ottawa—Orléans, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, it is with great pleasure that I note the visit to our capital today by two Australian visitors, Elizabeth and Peter Bardos, who are hosted by two wise residents of Orléans, Fran and Michael Rushton.
    Mr. Bardos is a dedicated public servant, who has spent his entire career making life better for his fellow countrymen, having worked for the Liberal Party of Australia and a number of members of Parliament of that great country down under.
    Those close to Mr. Bardos have described him as a champion of democracy. Canada and Australia have for many decades enjoyed a friendly and highly productive relationship, one that is very special to this country, Canada.
    We had the opportunity to witness the quality of our relationship with Australia during the visit to Canada by Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott last June.
    I would like to wish the Bardos' a most delightful visit to Canada.

HPV Vaccination Program

Hon. Peter Kent (Thornhill, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I rise today to thank colleagues on both sides of this House for the kind words and prayers during my recent medical bout with cancer. I would also like to thank the physicians and staff of the Odette Cancer Centre of Toronto's Sunnybrook Hospital.
     I am very grateful for a positive outcome, but I am grateful as well for insight provided by medical professionals on a crucial matter of public health.
    Colleagues will recall that while vaccination programs are a primary responsibility of the provinces, our government provided funding in the 2007 budget for a national vaccination program to immunize adolescent girls against the human papillomavirus, HPV. My doctors advise that the program should now be extended to cover boys, that otherwise we can expect a spike in the incidence of HPV cancers in men in coming decades.
    I am delighted to report that the Minister of Health has told me that she will take this matter under consideration.

Clerk of the House of Commons

Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, I rise today on our first day back in Parliament to extend our warmest wishes to our beloved House of Commons Clerk, Ms. Audrey O'Brien, who is recovering from emergency surgery.
    It is so familiar to see Audrey sitting at the table in her robes, always on the alert for what is taking place in this chamber, where the unexpected is to be expected.
     The clerk's incredible professionalism, expertise, guidance, not to mention her wry sense of humour, are hallmarks of our Parliament. Audrey serves her office and parliamentarians with distinction, honour, and dedication. She is a rare breed, and we are fortunate that she is our senior House officer.
    We also offer support and thanks to the acting Clerk, Mr. Marc Bosc, and will endeavour to give him as little grief as possible, something that will no doubt be broken by day's end.
    On behalf of my fellow New Democrats and our leader, and I am sure all members of Parliament, we wish Audrey a speedy and full recovery.
    We have just one little bit of advice: “Stay off watching QP. We do not want to add to your stress”.
    Best wishes, Audrey.

Government Priorities

Mr. Tom Lukiwski (Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, today is the first day of the new sitting, and on this side of the House, we are excited to be back.
    We are looking forward to the year ahead, and for good reason. It is because on this side of the House we are choosing to do more for Canadian families; choosing to keep Canada strong and principled in a dark and dangerous world; choosing to reduce deficit, cut taxes, and balance the budget; choosing to put honest, law-abiding citizens and victims ahead of criminals. We choose to take a strong stand in the world based on our values.
    This is why we have lowered taxes for families and job-creating businesses. It is why we have cut the GST, introduced the tax-free savings account, created the universal child care benefit, and established income splitting for our pensioners. We will continue to work hard for all Canadian families.

  (1410)  

Immigrant Workers

Mr. Andrew Cash (Davenport, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to rise today on behalf of the good people of Davenport, in the great city of Toronto, to register my concern about racial profiling and the targeting of primarily Portuguese and Latino immigrant workers in my riding. This summer, agents from Canada Border Services reportedly went into bakeries, malls, and construction sites, asking those who fit this profile for their ID. The sweep has created outrage, anger, and fear among many in our hard-working immigrant communities.
    In fact, I first heard of these raids from a local high school student who, close to tears, told me about how his father brought the family to Canada a couple of years ago from Portugal, got a job, and is working hard. They are building a life here, but since his work papers are expiring, they too are afraid that they are going to be targeted.
    Instead of encouraging hard-working immigrant families, the government is harassing them. We need to fix this broken system. We can do this by putting the needs of families at the heart of our immigration system.

World War II Heroes

Hon. Laurie Hawn (Edmonton Centre, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, on Wednesday, September 10, I was honoured to join my colleagues, veterans, and their families right across Canada to pay tribute to and remember those who fought and lost their lives in the Second World War.
    On September 10, 1939, Canada stood up as a nation of just 11 million people and declared war in support of our allies. Canada rose up yet again to defend the rights of all people to live in peace and freedom. That is what makes Canadians who we are, the people who are prepared to the go to the aid of others we have never met simply because it is the right thing to do. At home, abroad, in the air, on land, and at sea, people across this great land rallied together in extraordinary ways to defeat a brutal Nazi regime and stop its unspeakable atrocities.
    At this event, I was honoured to present a limited edition lapel pin and certificate to those most deserving Canadian veterans. As we pay our respects in the coming months and years, let our veterans hear with one clear voice from Parliament that we shall never forget their heroism and sacrifice.
    Lest we forget.

Rugby World Cup

Mr. Massimo Pacetti (Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, this summer Canadian rugby took a giant leap forward, as our senior women's rugby team earned a second place finish at the 2014 Rugby World Cup. It was Canada's best result ever.

[Translation]

    I would like to point out the contribution made by the seven Quebec players on the national team, including Magali Harvey whose outstanding play led her to score 61 points for her team in five games. She was named the women's player of the year by the International Rugby Board for her efforts.

[English]

    Our side showed cohesion and skill that only comes from countless hours of hard work and pushing the limits.
    On behalf of the Liberal Party, I am pleased to offer my congratulations for a job well done to our team. As a proud Canadian and a former rugby player who fondly remembers his time on the pitch, I would like to thank these extraordinary women for raising Canadian rugby to new heights.
    Well done, Team Canada. The future of rugby looks bright indeed.
    Go, Canada, go.

Franklin Expedition

Mr. James Bezan (Selkirk—Interlake, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, my mother was born in Chesterfield Inlet and was raised in the Arctic as my grandparents worked for the Hudson Bay Company.
     For me, and all Canadians, one of the great mysteries in Canada's history was the tragic loss of the ships in the Franklin expedition, in 1846. This mystery has been wrapped in the icy waters of Canada's Arctic for more than 160 years. Earlier this month, a large clue to this national mystery was revealed with the finding of one of Sir Franklin's ships.
    Where many have failed, we are fortunate to have succeeded. The discovery would not have been possible without our modern technology, skilled archaeologists, hardy crews, and the oral history of the Inuit, the same people who have inhabited these lands since time began.
    Canadians are thankful to all those who contributed to this noble and important endeavour. While questions remain about the Franklin expedition, today there can be no question about the Arctic and Canada. Since the beginning, the Arctic has been an integral part of Canada, and forever shall it be the true north, strong and free.

  (1415)  

[Translation]

The New Democratic Party of Canada

Ms. Alexandrine Latendresse (Louis-Saint-Laurent, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, my NDP colleagues and I are back in Ottawa in fine form after spending the summer touring our constituencies.
    Canadians are exasperated by the partisan attacks and empty rhetoric of the Liberals and the Conservatives. They are calling for a truly progressive government that has solutions to their problems.
    When we look at their policies, we realize quite quickly that the red and blue policies are very similar. Just think of the oil port in Cacouna, the Keystone pipeline, the agreement with China and the current war in Iraq.
    Canadians deserve better. They deserve real change, not just superficial change.
    In the next few weeks, we are going to show that, together, we can fix our health system, create good jobs and set up day care centres that meet our needs.
    A year away from an election, the NDP is ready to form the government, a real progressive government that actually listens to people.

[English]

Liberal Party of Canada

Ms. Roxanne James (Scarborough Centre, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, it is said that someone can be judged by the company they keep.
    This summer, not only did we learn that the leader of the Liberal Party opposes revoking the passports of those who go overseas to commit terrorist acts, but we also learned that he visited the Al-Sunnah Al-Nabawiah mosque in Montreal.
    This mosque is listed by the Pentagon as a location where known al-Qaeda members were recruited, trained, and facilitated. Above and beyond that, this mosque teaches a fundamentalist distortion of Islam, one that preaches extremist, intolerant views and treats women as second-class citizens.
     The leader of the Liberal Party thinks that the government should be telling him where he should and should not go. If he does not have the judgment to see barbarism is not a Canadian value, then he is definitely in over his head.

ROUTINE PROCEEDINGS

[Routine Proceedings]

[English]

New Member

The Speaker:  
    I have the honour to inform the House that the Clerk of the House has received from the Chief Electoral Officer a certificate of the election and return of Mr. John Barlow, member for the electoral district of Macleod.

New Member Introduced

    Mr. John Barlow, member for the electoral district of Macleod, introduced by the Right Hon. Stephen Harper.

New Member

The Speaker:  
    I have the honour to inform the House that the Clerk of the House has received from the Chief Electoral Officer a certificate of the election and return of Mr. Arnold Chan, member for the electoral district of Scarborough—Agincourt.

New Member Introduced

    Mr. Arnold Chan, member for the electoral district of Scarborough—Agincourt, introduced by Mr. Justin Trudeau.

New Member

The Speaker:  
    I have the honour to inform the House that the Clerk of the House has received from the Chief Electoral Officer a certificate of the election and return of Mr. Adam Vaughan, member for the electoral district of Trinity—Spadina.

New Member Introduced

    Mr. Adam Vaughan, member for the electoral district of Trinity—Spadina, introduced by Mr. Justin Trudeau.

  (1420)  

New Member

The Speaker:  
    I have the honour to inform the House that the Clerk of the House has received from the Chief Electoral Officer a certificate of the election and return of Mr. David Yurdiga, member for the electoral district of Fort McMurray—Athabasca.

New Member Introduced

    Mr. David Yurdiga, member for the electoral district of Fort McMurray—Athabasca, introduced by the Right Hon. Stephen Harper.

ORAL QUESTIONS

[Oral Questions]

[English]

Foreign Affairs

Hon. Thomas Mulcair (Leader of the Opposition, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, how many members of the Canadian Forces are being sent to Iraq?

[Translation]

    How many members of the Canadian Forces will be sent to Iraq? How many?

[English]

Right Hon. Stephen Harper (Prime Minister, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, as the government has announced, and I gather was reviewed by a committee of this body, the Royal Canadian Air Force has been deployed to Iraq to deliver humanitarian and military assistance to Kurdish forces fighting the Islamic State, ISIL, and there are several dozen Canadian army personnel also deployed to Iraq in an advise-and-assist capacity.
    We are, of course, very proud that the men and women in uniform are always ready to undertake these missions on behalf of Canadians.
Hon. Thomas Mulcair (Leader of the Opposition, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, in the Prime Minister's 2007 throne speech, he promised “any future military deployments must also be supported by a majority of parliamentarians”. That is a direct quote from the Prime Minister. It puts his honour on the table. Now he is sending Canadian troops to join the war in Iraq without a vote in the House, without even a debate in this House.
    Why is the Prime Minister breaking his own solemn promise to Canadians?

[Translation]

    Why is the Prime Minister sending members of the Canadian Forces to Iraq without discussion, debate or a vote in the House?

[English]

Right Hon. Stephen Harper (Prime Minister, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I think the hon. member should know well the government's position. Of course, it is the right of any government that has the confidence of the House of Commons to advise the Governor General on military operations.
    That said, wherever there has been a deployment of a combat nature, the government has put this to Parliament for a further confidence vote, and that is not the case with the present mission to Iraq.

Employment

Hon. Thomas Mulcair (Leader of the Opposition, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, let me remind the Prime Minister what exactly he said back then, in 2007, “any future military deployments”. He is inventing now a distinction that did not exist at the time.

  (1425)  

[Translation]

    Does the Prime Minister think it is acceptable that in a country as rich as Canada, families where both parents work full time can still be under the poverty line?
    Does the Prime Minister think that is acceptable, yes or no?

[English]

Right Hon. Stephen Harper (Prime Minister, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I think if you review the record, you will see the government's position on parliamentary votes on military deployment has been very consistent.

[Translation]

    As for minimum wage, the labour market is largely regulated by the provinces. The federal government follows the wages set by the provinces. It does not make sense to have two different wages for different classes of employees.
    We will continue to work with the provinces on this.
Hon. Thomas Mulcair (Leader of the Opposition, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, many studies have shown that raising the minimum wage can help families make ends meet, without increasing unemployment or inflation. This has been proven on numerous occasions.
    Why, then, is the Prime Minister handing out tens of billions of dollars in tax cuts to Canada's richest companies and refusing to increase wages for families at the low end of the scale?
Right Hon. Stephen Harper (Prime Minister, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, it is quite the contrary.
    This government lowered the GST for all Canadian families. This government created the universal child care benefit, and the New Democrats are the ones who voted against benefits for Canadians.

[English]

Hon. Thomas Mulcair (Leader of the Opposition, NDP):  
    It is interesting, Mr. Speaker, that the Prime Minister does not hesitate to interfere in the market when it comes time to bring in more temporary foreign workers and pay them 15% less than Canadian workers to suppress wages, or to force seniors to work an extra two years before they can retire, or to trample on collective bargaining rights and impose back-to-work legislation.
    Why is the Prime Minister only willing to interfere in the market when it is to lower wages?
Right Hon. Stephen Harper (Prime Minister, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, it is quite the contrary. We are very proud to see that wages in this country have continued to rise in spite of the general economic turmoil around us.
    There is lots we do for Canadian families, obviously. I mentioned the universal child care benefit, cutting the GST that affects all Canadian consumers, and enhancing the guaranteed income supplement. There are three things alone that benefit families, workers, and poor people, and in every case, the NDP voted against them. Why does the NDP vote against every idea unless it is about more taxes and more borrowing?
Mr. Justin Trudeau (Papineau, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, Canadians need a plan for jobs and growth. This government's EI proposal would create neither.
    Why would the Prime Minister sign off on his finance minister's plan that provides greater incentives to fire workers than to hire new ones?
Right Hon. Stephen Harper (Prime Minister, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I do not know what the leader of the Liberal Party is talking about. Canada post-recession has one of the best job creation records in the world: 1.1 million net new jobs.
    What we understand on this side is that his plan for higher taxes and higher deficits is not a plan that will help the economy. We are for eliminating the deficit, for continuing to lower our taxes, and for continuing to create jobs and growth.
Mr. Justin Trudeau (Papineau, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, the Conservative EI plan, announced last week to much fanfare, can offer over $2,000--
    Some hon. members: Oh, oh!
The Speaker:  
    Members are free to applaud when the member for Papineau is finished asking his question but not before then. The hon. member for Papineau.
Mr. Justin Trudeau:  
    Mr. Speaker, if we actually look at the numbers of their EI plan, it offers up to $2,000 in credit to businesses that fire workers and only up to $200 if they hire a new worker.
    As a proposal, why does the Prime Minister not offer instead an EI premium exemption for every new worker that a business would hire? That is a way to offer growth and job creation.

  (1430)  

Right Hon. Stephen Harper (Prime Minister, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, first of all, let me congratulate the Minister of Finance for his announcement and note that the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, the entire small business community, welcomed this announcement. What they do not welcome is the proposal of the Liberal Party, which through the establishment of an obligatory 45-day work year across the country would hike EI by some 35%. That is something we will never do.

[Translation]

Mr. Justin Trudeau (Papineau, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, Canadians know that we must encourage job creation and economic growth. This government's EI plan encourages the firing instead of the hiring of workers.
    Why would the Prime Minister not propose an EI premium exemption for every new job that a business creates? That is how you encourage economic growth and job creation.
Right Hon. Stephen Harper (Prime Minister, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, let me stress once again the announcement that the Minister of Finance made last week and the positive reaction from small and medium-sized businesses across the country. I congratulate the Minister of Finance for this fine announcement.
    Clearly, that is the complete opposite of the Liberal Party's position, which seeks to increase EI premiums by 35% to create a 45-day work year. That is completely unacceptable for small and medium-sized businesses. That is something we will never do.

Natural Resources

Hon. Thomas Mulcair (Leader of the Opposition, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, under our Constitution, managing natural resources falls under provincial jurisdiction. Therefore, we have a simple question for the Prime Minister: does he think that the provinces have a say when foreign dictatorships try to grab a piece of their natural resources? Do the provinces have a say in the matter, yes or no?
Right Hon. Stephen Harper (Prime Minister, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, we have the Investment Canada Act. Under the process set out by the legislation, the government consults with the provinces and territories on a regular basis.

[English]

Hon. Thomas Mulcair (Leader of the Opposition, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, there he goes again, confusing Investment Canada with the China FIPA that he just signed. Now that the government of China owns Nexen, it is to be treated like any other Canadian company. It is therefore allowed to buy up an unlimited number of oil and gas leases in this country. It has nothing whatsoever to do with an Investment Canada review.
    So I repeat my question to the Prime Minister. He promised two years ago that foreign countries, especially foreign dictatorships, would not be allowed to get their hands on Canadian resources. Why is he denying Alberta the right to control its resources? Why is he selling out Alberta resources?
Right Hon. Stephen Harper (Prime Minister, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, it would take an amazing leap of logic for anybody in Alberta to think the NDP is going to trust their resources to them.
    Our foreign investment protection acts are subject to the Investment Canada Act, and obviously, in the case we have before us, this is an agreement we have reached with the government of China that is widely and strongly supported by Canadian investors, because they need these protections, and we are making sure that our exporters and investors have legal protections in this market.

[Translation]

Ethics

Mr. Alexandre Boulerice (Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, this infamous $90,000 cheque issued by the Prime Minister's former chief of staff is at the heart of Mike Duffy's trial for fraud and corruption, which gets under way tomorrow. The question on everyone's mind is quite simple. How is it that the guy who received the cheque gets charged, but the one who signed it gets away with it? That makes no sense. Where there is corruption, there has to be a corrupter.
    Does the Prime Minister think that the Director of Public Prosecutions should launch an investigation to determine whether charges should also be laid against Nigel Wright?

  (1435)  

[English]

Mr. Paul Calandra (Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and for Intergovernmental Affairs, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I just want to congratulate the RCMP for the very thorough work that they did. As you know, Mr. Speaker, this case is before the courts right now, and we will let the courts make their decision.
    At the same time, we know that the NDP is facing a similar investigation, with over $1.5 million of potentially illegal funds that it used from taxpayers to support offices in provinces where it has no members of Parliament. I hope that the NDP will do the right thing and repay taxpayers.

[Translation]

Mr. Alexandre Boulerice (Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, I can assure you that I have never given a cheque to a senator.
    The Conservatives say that they are tough on crime, but not when their friends are involved. I should point out that they just let Mike Tyson into the country, even though he is a convicted rapist. But I digress.
    Former Conservative Senator Mike Duffy is now before the courts, but the Conservative staff who were up to their necks in this scandal are doing extraordinarily well. Corruption is like doing the tango—it takes two.
    When are the Conservatives going to clean house? When are they going to stop protecting their friends? When are they going to ask the Director of Public Prosecutions to launch an investigation into Nigel Wright?

[English]

Mr. Paul Calandra (Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and for Intergovernmental Affairs, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, he and a number of the members of his caucus cut cheques to support illegal offices in provinces where they actually have no members of Parliament, but again, we cannot forget that this is the exact same member who cut 29 separate cheques to a party that wants to break up Canada.
    On this side of the House, we will continue to defend Canada. We will continue to do the things that have led Canada to be one of the most prosperous nations in the world. We will continue to cut taxes. We will continue to do what is right for families, because that is what Canadians' priorities are.
Mr. Charlie Angus (Timmins—James Bay, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, the Director of Public Prosecutions was created in the wake of the Liberal sponsorship scandal to ensure independent justice when the Prime Minister's own office is involved. Now tomorrow, Mike Duffy is going up on 30 charges, including receiving a bribe, a bribe that involved the Prime Minister's staff, yet the Director of Public Prosecutions was not consulted.
    The DPP's mandate says intervening and advising law enforcement agencies on matters relating to prosecutions and advising the RCMP. Does the minister agree that the Nigel Wright case would be within the mandate of the Director of Public Prosecutions?
Mr. Paul Calandra (Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and for Intergovernmental Affairs, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, as members know, this government does not direct the Director of Public Prosecutions. It is an independent office, and it governs itself on its own.
    Again, we are very confident. The RCMP did a great job of this, and I want to commend them for the work they did. It is in front of the courts, and we will allow that decision to be made by the courts.

Access to Information

Mr. Charlie Angus (Timmins—James Bay, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, it is unfortunate that the DPP has been put on ice ever since the Conservatives got into power. But let us look at the Conservatives' ongoing attack on Canadians' right to information. It has gotten so bizarre that apparently now the spending on Viagra in the military has become a state secret. I want to talk about dysfunction here, but we are talking about ethical dysfunction of the government.
    Do they not understand that government spending is the spending of public money, and the reason we have the Access to Information Act is to be able to have Canadians hold the government to account? Why are they obstructing the Access to Information Act again and again and again?
Mr. Dan Albas (Parliamentary Secretary to the President of the Treasury Board, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, in 2012-2013 our government set a number of records for openness and transparency. This government processed a record number of access to information requests, released a record number of materials, and had improved turnaround times. Our government processed nearly 54,000 access to information requests, which is a 27% increase over the previous year: over 10,000 more requests. Our government also released a record number of materials. Over six million pages were released, an increase of nearly two million.
    The numbers do not lie. Canadians are getting more and better access than before, thanks to this government.

Taxation

Mr. Murray Rankin (Victoria, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, the Conservative campaign to silence anyone who disagrees with them has reached a new low. Environmental groups, anti-poverty organizations, and international human rights defenders have all been targeted by political audits by the Conservatives.
    Now more than 400 academics from coast to coast have signed a joint letter calling for a stop to this Conservative witch hunt. Will the minister suspend these political audits in order to clear the air, or will she continue targeting anyone who disagrees with the government?
Hon. Kerry-Lynne D. Findlay (Minister of National Revenue, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, the member knows full well that CRA audits occur at arm's length, conducted free of any political interference or motivation. Rules regarding charities and their political activities are very long standing. In 2012 alone, over $14 billion was tax receipted from approximately 86,000 charities. Charities must respect the law, and the CRA has a legal responsibility to ensure that charitable dollars donated by charitable Canadians are used for charitable purposes. The only politics in this story are the very shameful political motivations of the member and his party.

  (1440)  

[Translation]

Mr. Murray Rankin (Victoria, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives' goal is clear: silence those who do not share their opinion.
    The minister is hiding behind the Canada Revenue Agency to conduct a witch hunt against charitable organizations whose only crime is being progressive. Oddly enough, so far, none of the right-leaning think tanks have been targeted. Is the minister going to stop this witch hunt and let charitable organizations do their work?

[English]

Hon. Kerry-Lynne D. Findlay (Minister of National Revenue, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, the member really should be ashamed of himself for attempting to score cheap political points on the backs of professional public servants at the CRA. As the director general of the charities directorate, the commissioner of the CRA, and I have said, there is no political interference or motivation in CRA audits whatsoever. The rule regarding charities and political activities, as I have said, are long standing. CRA has a legal responsibility to ensure that charitable dollars are used appropriately, and charities have a responsibility to respect the law.

Employment

Mr. Nathan Cullen (Skeena—Bulkley Valley, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives have been pretending to defend the Canadian public service in this place. Let us get this straight. Conservatives are for billions of dollars in corporate tax giveaways to their friends, but they are against hard-working Canadians earning a living wage. They are for secretive trade deals with China, but they are against trade deals that add value to our natural resources. Conservatives are for cutting employment insurance access for millions of Canadians, but they are against giving a premium break to the workers who pay into the program.
    Will the minister finally do the right thing, reinstate the federal minimum wage, and help lift tens of thousands of working Canadians out of poverty?
Hon. Jason Kenney (Minister of Employment and Social Development and Minister for Multiculturalism, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, in fact, Canadians of all income levels have seen their incomes rise since our government came to office. They have seen their net worth increase.
    The NDP is opposed to every measure to assist with that. Our government has removed from the tax rolls some 850,000 low-income Canadians, measures that were opposed by the NDP. Our finance minister just cut premiums to help small businesses create new jobs, a measure opposed by the NDP. Our government is supporting our energy industry, the single greatest creator of high-paying jobs, an industry opposed by the NDP. Our government is creating new markets for energy and agriculture, all measures opposed by the NDP.

Foreign Affairs

Mr. Marc Garneau (Westmount—Ville-Marie, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, I think we all agree that ISIL is not only a threat to Iraq and Syria, but to the entire collective security of the world and of our shared values.
    Canadians, through Parliament, should be fully engaged on this issue and Canada's potential response to it.
    Does the Prime Minister agree that Parliament should debate this issue and will he participate in such a debate?
Hon. Rob Nicholson (Minister of National Defence, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, as the Prime Minister has already indicated, this is not a combat mission. However, just last week I and the Minister of Foreign Affairs were before the defence committee and the foreign affairs committee to discuss this.
    My understanding is that Parliament in fact will be discussing this, and I invite everyone to participate.

[Translation]

Employment Insurance

Hon. John McCallum (Markham—Unionville, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, even economist Jack Mintz and small business champion Dan Kelly have criticized the Conservatives' employment insurance plan. They say that it is bad for economic growth and could discourage job creation.
    Why do the Conservatives not adopt the Liberal plan, which is much more targeted and includes a break from employment insurance contributions for new employees?
Hon. Joe Oliver (Minister of Finance, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, the Liberal Party claims to support small businesses, but it is opposed to the idea of them saving over $550,000.

[English]

    It is quite remarkable that the Liberals would actually stand to talk about this issue, having raised EI premiums to $60 billion, turned it into a slush fund and then used it for other purposes than for which it was intended.

  (1445)  

Hon. Ralph Goodale (Wascana, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, the last government in fact reduced EI premiums 12 consecutive years in a row.
    Canadians need a break from the $5.4 billion in job-killing EI payroll tax increases imposed by the Conservative government.
    The scheme announced last week totally misses the mark. There is no link to job creation and it is capped, going only to firms with up to a dozen employees. If they go over that, they lose $2,200. That is an incentive to fire people.
    Will the government simply provide a full EI refund to every employer who creates a new Canadian job? That would generate—
Hon. Joe Oliver (Minister of Finance, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I am very proud of what we did with small businesses, which are the generators of employment in our country.
    Over 90% of small businesses, of all businesses, would benefit: 780,000 businesses and $550 million over the next two years. This is precisely what we want to do: create more jobs for Canadians from coast to coast to coast.

[Translation]

Health

Mr. Dany Morin (Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, a Toronto Star investigation has confirmed what the NDP has been saying for a long time: over the past six years, a number of Canadian pharmaceutical companies did not abide by laws regarding the safety of their products. What is worse, some of these companies are still allowed to sell their products, even though they willingly distributed defective medication. The complacency and lack of transparency at Health Canada is unbelievable.
    How can the minister explain that the offending pharmaceutical companies did this under her watch and that they put the health of Canadians at risk?

[English]

Hon. Rona Ambrose (Minister of Health, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, whenever there is a dangerous product identified, Health Canada inspectors act immediately.
    In the case of a drug produced by Apotex, Health Canada inspectors asked the company to remove it from the shelf and it refused.
    We now have Vanessa's Law, which would allow our government to pull products that would be unsafe from the market immediately.
    I ask the member to ensure that has quick passage and we will be able to act when manufacturers do exactly what we are concerned about.
Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, obviously there is still a pretty big problem.
    When Canadians take a prescription drug, they deserve to know it is safe. However, now we know that drug companies are knowingly releasing defective drugs in Canada.
    Instead of learning this from Health Canada, we had to hear it from the FDA. Health Canada refuses to release information on whom it monitors or what violations are found.
    How can Canadians trust Health Canada when there is no transparency and how could transparency and monitoring have become so bad in our country?
Hon. Rona Ambrose (Minister of Health, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I would ask the member to not fearmonger.
    She knows very well that Health Canada inspectors are professional. All of us recognize that nowhere is confidence and transparency more important than in the decisions made that affect the health and safety of Canadians. In fact, we just recently launched a world-leading regulatory transparency framework and action plan at Health Canada. We are just starting to post inspections of any pharmaceutical facilities and will continue to do just that so they are made public and available.

National Defence

Mr. Jack Harris (St. John's East, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, the government's failed plans to replace Canada's aging search and rescue aircraft hit a new low with the news that the RCAF had to source parts from a 50-year-old plane on display at the National Air Force Museum.
    It would be funny if it were not for the fact that Canadians rely on the Hercules and Buffalo aircraft to respond to thousands of emergencies every year. Though started by the Liberals in 2002, there will not be replacement planes in operation until 2019, at the earliest.
    Does the minister simply expect the RCAF to raid other museums in the meantime?
Hon. Rob Nicholson (Minister of National Defence, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, what the hon. member was referring to was a mistake. When it was discovered, the RCAF took the appropriate measures.
    That being said, this is the government that has delivered 17 new Hercules transport aircraft, 4 Strategic transports, and 15 Chinook heavy-lift helicopters.
    How did the NDP vote? The NDP voted against all of these. Every dollar for the military is opposed by the NDP.

  (1450)  

[Translation]

Ms. Élaine Michaud (Portneuf—Jacques-Cartier, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, both the Conservatives and the Liberals botched the bidding process to replace the CF-18s.
    The process had to be restarted as a result of their improvisation, secrecy and inability to control costs. At this rate, it will be decades before we will have a new fighter jet in operation.
    How do the Conservatives plan to replace the CF-18s? Are they going to ransack museums to find spare parts?
Hon. Diane Finley (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, no decision has been made about replacing the CF-18 fleet.
    We followed a process to evaluate all of the options, and an independent panel looked at all of the evaluations. The minister is now examining these reports and evaluations. A decision will be made once that is complete.

[English]

Small Business

Mr. David Yurdiga (Fort McMurray—Athabasca, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, our government recognizes the vital role small businesses play in the economy and job creation. That is why we are helping them grow and succeed with our low-tax plan.
    Today, a small business earning $500,000 now saves $28,000 on their taxes. That is more money for entrepreneurs to spend on growing their business and hiring Canadians. We are not stopping there.
     Could the Minister of Finance please tell the House what further actions our government is taking to support small business?
Hon. Joe Oliver (Minister of Finance, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I congratulate the newly elected member for Fort McMurray—Athabasca.
    He is absolutely correct. Small business is vital for creating new jobs. That is why our new small business job credit lowers their employment insurance payroll taxes by 15%, and saves them $550 million over the next two years. Ninety percent of all companies, 780,000 companies, will benefit.
    Unlike the opposition, we believe in putting more money into job-creating ventures.

Status of Women

Ms. Niki Ashton (Churchill, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, almost a month ago, Tina Fontaine's body was found in the Red River. She was just 15 years old.
    The government has a responsibility to help end the violence against indigenous women. Many have shared a social media campaign with the chilling slogan “Am I next?”
    Today in Winnipeg, families are dragging the Red River to find the bodies of their loved ones. Canadians demand action.
    Why is the government refusing to call a national inquiry into missing and murdered indigenous women in our country?
Hon. K. Kellie Leitch (Minister of Labour and Minister of Status of Women, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, these are terrible crimes against innocent people. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families.
    The RCMP has said in its own study that the vast majority of these cases are addressed and solved through police investigations. We do not need yet another study on this topic. Some 40 studies have already been completed. We actually need the police to catch the individuals who are perpetuating these crimes and ensuring they are punished.
    Now is not the time to get another study, another look by the lawyers. Now is the time for action, and that is what this government intends to do.

[Translation]

Mr. Romeo Saganash (Abitibi—Baie-James—Nunavik—Eeyou, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister has decided to refuse to call a national inquiry because he does not think the disappearance and murder of close to 1,200 aboriginal women and girls is a systemic problem. Aboriginal communities and the provinces are unanimous in their desire to move forward.
    Why are the Conservatives refusing this inquiry? Do they not understand that they are now completely alone in this?
Hon. K. Kellie Leitch (Minister of Labour and Minister of Status of Women, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, these are terrible crimes against innocent people. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families.

[English]

    As I just mentioned, the RCMP has said in its own study the vast majority of these cases have been addressed and are solved through police investigations.
    What I will say, and am very proud of today, is that our government is committed to standing up for the victims of these crimes and protecting aboriginal women and girls. That is why this morning I was proud to table an action plan to address family violence and—

  (1455)  

The Speaker:  
    The hon. member for Davenport.

Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Andrew Cash (Davenport, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, from indigenous women to refugees, the Conservative government seems all too happy to leave Canada's most vulnerable communities behind. First it takes away health care to refugees, something the Federal Court called cruel and unusual. Now it is trying to take away social assistance, letting sick kids go without health care, while their families are left penniless. Not only is this an attack on refugees, it is an attack on basic Canadian values.
    Will the Conservatives do the right thing and withdraw this heartless bill?
Hon. Chris Alexander (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, Canada has the most fair and generous immigration system in the world, the most fair and generous asylum system in the world, but Canadians have no tolerance for those who would abuse our generosity and take unfair advantage of that undoubted world-class generosity.
    By making changes to the system, our government is ensuring immigration is protected from those who seek to abuse taxpayer-funded health care, welfare and other social benefits. We have done this in reforming our immigration system in the past. We will continue to look at legislation in this place from the government, from private members, that goes in that direction to ensure a generous system gives value for taxpayer dollars.

[Translation]

Mrs. Sadia Groguhé (Saint-Lambert, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, under the Conservatives, Canada's reputation on the world stage is already suffering.
    Canada has always been a welcoming country for immigrants and refugees, but the Conservatives are about to dramatically marginalize refugees by cutting their access to social assistance. They obviously have no morals.
    When will the minister realize that Bill C-585 is a direct attack on human dignity?
Hon. Chris Alexander (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, what the opposition does not want to say, especially not here or outside the House, is that Canada is still a country that welcomes the world's refugees and is the envy of all our partners.
    Canada continues to welcome one in 10 refugees sent to third countries by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. We are proud that over 18,000 Iraqis have been welcomed in Canada since 2009. That is what I call action and generosity. We will not take any lessons about that from the NDP.

[English]

Infrastructure

Mr. Arnold Chan (Scarborough—Agincourt, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, congestion in Toronto is quickly reaching crisis levels. Experts now estimate that congestion in the GTA is reaching over $11 billion annually. Ontario's premier has said that the federal government's investment is less than one-quarter of what it needs to be, yet the government has shamefully reduced the amount that is being spent on infrastructure, including Toronto's transit system.
    When will the government heed Ontario's premier and start meaningful investments so Scarborough can have its subway?
Hon. Joe Oliver (Minister of Finance, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, our government has increased transfers to the Province of Ontario by 76%, up to $19.2 billion. We have increased social programs. We have increased health transfers. We have increased equalization, and we have the longest and largest infrastructure program in Canadian history, totalling $70 billion over the next 10 years.
    We are very much focused on the issue of traffic congestion in the GTA, and we will do our part with the provinces and municipalities.

Status of Women

Mr. Adam Vaughan (Trinity—Spadina, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, today I rise to ask the Prime Minister a question about the 1,200 missing indigenous women who have either been murdered or who have disappeared.
    In Winnipeg, volunteers do not have the Prime Minister's support. Instead, they turned to social media to raise funds to search lakes and rivers to find their missing loved ones.
    On social media, indigenous women now ask, “am I next?” When will the Prime Minister admit that this is a sociological phenomenon? When will he put as much effort into finding these missing people as he did into finding the missing Franklin expedition?

  (1500)  

Hon. K. Kellie Leitch (Minister of Labour and Minister of Status of Women, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, as I mentioned earlier, these are terrible crimes against innocent people and our thoughts and prayers are with those families, as well as with the victims.
    However, I want to be very clear. How dare the opposition raise this when it opposed budgets for shelters, when it opposed the $25 million that we have invested—
    Some hon. members: Oh, oh!
The Speaker:  
    Order, please. The hon. Minister of Status of Women has the floor.
Hon. K. Kellie Leitch:  
    Mr. Speaker, the opposition opposed our budget action of a $25-million investment toward making sure that violence against aboriginal women is combatted. It opposed matrimonial property rights.
    We are here and focused on making sure that the rights of victims are dealt with.

[Translation]

The Environment

Mr. Guy Caron (Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, on September 11, TransCanada began offshore drilling near Cacouna in order to build an oil port in the middle of a fragile ecosystem. However, the National Energy Board has not yet reviewed the entire project, nor has the BAPE, which is supposed to begin hearings later this fall. In fact, only the NDP consulted Canadians this summer. To add insult to injury, the government refuses to publish the studies conducted by scientists at Fisheries and Oceans Canada.
    Why does the government refuse to put all the scientific information on the table? What is it hiding?

[English]

Hon. Gail Shea (Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, we have been clear that projects will only move forward if they are safe for Canadians and safe for the environment.
    TransCanada has not submitted the construction of a marine terminal in Cacouna for review to the National Energy Board. That is why it has not reviewed it.
    At this stage, the only work being conducted in the area is exploratory in nature, and it has been carefully reviewed by DFO experts and authorized contingent on very strict conditions.

[Translation]

Mr. François Lapointe (Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, if the government has nothing to hide, why did it insist that tomorrow's emergency committee meeting be held in camera? Why? Transparency? What transparency?
    Under this government, the environmental assessment process has become a joke. The regulatory bodies no longer have any teeth. The public and scientists alike are being muzzled. Now, without any scientific advice, work has resumed in an area where beluga whales are at risk. In short, Canadians are wondering if the deck has been stacked in favour of the oil companies.
    How can the government allow work off the coast of Cacouna to begin without any advice from scientists to guarantee the protection of endangered species?

[English]

Hon. Gail Shea (Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, as I have said, the only work being conducted in this area is exploratory in nature. Furthermore, all of the scientific information relating to the review of this work is posted online.
    I find it hard to comprehend why the NDP is running around requesting an emergency committee meeting to request information that it could find with a simple Google search.

Industry

Mr. John Barlow (Macleod, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, Canadians live and work in an increasingly digital world. Groups like the Alberta southwest economic development association understand that increasing Internet accessibility is essential for creating jobs and economic opportunities, and for connecting Canadians to online services.
    To continue growing our Canadian economy, we need to ensure that Canadians, wherever they live, have access to high-speed Internet. Can the minister please explain what the government is doing to ensure that Canadians in rural and remote communities have access to high-speed Internet?
Hon. James Moore (Minister of Industry, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I want to congratulate my colleague from Macleod on getting elected. I also want to congratulate him on his very first intervention on his first day in this place, raising an issue of great concern to his constituents, and that is moving forward with digital connectivity.
    We as a government have invested record amounts of money on infrastructure across this country. Part of that infrastructure is digital infrastructure to make sure that we take full advantage of the academic, economic, and social opportunities that are the fact of the digital age moving forward.
    In this year's budget we have put forward a $305-million investment to connect 280,000 households to make sure that Canada, the second-largest country in the world, has Internet connectivity in all of its communities. We are uniting Canada as we move forward to our 150th.

Status of Women

Hon. Carolyn Bennett (St. Paul's, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister is on the wrong side of history. He stubbornly refuses to listen to premiers, indigenous leadership, the international community, and most importantly, the families of missing and murdered indigenous women and girls. His response, “we should not view this as sociological phenomenon”, is actually a refusal to accept his responsibility to prevent the deaths and stop this tragedy.
    Will the Prime Minister apologize for his heartless and irresponsible remarks and call a national public inquiry now?

  (1505)  

Hon. K. Kellie Leitch (Minister of Labour and Minister of Status of Women, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I want to be very clear here. I have heard from victims' families directly. They want action and that is precisely what we are delivering.
    Today I was pleased to stand in the House and table our action plan to address family violence and violent crimes against aboriginal women and girls. This government is acting.
     On this side of the House we are standing up for the rights of victims against these despicable crimes. I wonder why the opposition votes against every initiative we take to make sure these people are—
The Speaker:  
    The hon. member for Laurier—Sainte-Marie.

[Translation]

International Development

Ms. Hélène Laverdière (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, much like Rights and Democracy and the Pearson Centre, now the North-South Institute is shutting down because of Conservative cuts. The North-South Institute is an important institution. It was voted the best think tank in the world in its category in 2011 and the best think tank in Canada in the development sector in 2012. The institute had varied its sources of revenue for its projects and had been working for months with government officials to have its funding renewed.
    However, the minister said no. Why?

[English]

Ms. Lois Brown (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Development, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, the North-South Institute is a think tank that is independent of the government.
    Our government announced over three years ago that we would be moving to project-based funding and we would be winding down core funding. The North-South Institute committed three years ago to finding alternative fundraising and the government provided two extensions to its contract to assist it in making that transition.
    The International Development Research Corporation has held several calls for proposals for research projects. The North-South Institute has been selected for several research projects via these calls.

Canadian Heritage

Mr. Ryan Leef (Yukon, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, our Prime Minister's vision has reinvigorated the interest of Canadians in both their national history and the Arctic. The finding of one of the long-lost ships from the ill-fated Franklin expedition is a remarkable achievement and one that all Canadians can be rightfully proud of. Parks Canada has conducted six major searches since 2008, covering hundreds of square kilometres in the Arctic.
    Could the Minister of the Environment please explain to the House what the crucial elements were that helped us find one of the ships from the Franklin expedition?
Hon. Leona Aglukkaq (Minister of the Environment, Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency and Minister for the Arctic Council, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, the discovery of Sir John Franklin's long-lost ship defines our national identity. It connects us from the past to the present from coast to coast to coast.
    The two ships were the only undiscovered national historic sites in Canada and finding one of the ships is an excellent example of the teamwork between our government, the Government of Nunavut, and the private sector partners who shared resources and expertise.
    The oral history of Inuit ultimately pointed us in the right direction and makes our case for Arctic sovereignty stronger than ever.

[Translation]

Air Transportation

Ms. Mylène Freeman (Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, tomorrow, Aéroports de Montréal will make its final decision regarding the future of Mirabel Airport. The proposal to demolish the terminal, despite the community's objections, is a worst-case scenario. The Liberal fiasco regarding Mirabel Airport is going to become a Conservative fiasco if the minister does not put a stop to the demolition. Instead, another use should be found for the building.
    Will the minister listen to the people in our region or will she do what the Liberals did and completely ignore reality?

[English]

Hon. Lisa Raitt (Minister of Transport, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, as the hon. member knows, Mirabel Airport is the property of Transport Canada but it is under a lease to Aéroports de Montréal. It is the one that is in charge of operating and taking the decisions around it. The decision that it has taken to bring down the terminal at Mirabel Airport is one that it is allowed to do under its lease agreements and it does respect the terms of the lease with Transport Canada.

  (1510)  

[Translation]

Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Jean-François Fortin (Haute-Gaspésie—La Mitis—Matane—Matapédia, Ind.):  
    Mr. Speaker, the Maurice Lamontagne Institute library, Fisheries and Oceans Canada's only French-language library, is still in limbo because of the federal government. The books are all in boxes rather than on the shelves. Information is not being shared as effectively as it could be.
    Six months ago, the Commissioner of Official Languages gave the minister a short nine-page report for analysis, asking that the library remain open. The minister wanted to read the report, but at the rate she is going, it must take her 20 years to read a novel.
    The minister wanted to conduct an in-depth analysis. Will she make an actual decision and allow the Maurice Lamontagne Institute library to remain open? It is important for the region.

[English]

Hon. Gail Shea (Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, library users are asking for digital information, which is clear when our libraries average between five and twelve in-person visitors per year. We have received the Commissioner of Official Languages' final report and are considering it. Our libraries will continue to deliver services in both national languages. The commissioner has recognized that the model for DFO's scientific libraries will not affect service to the public nor language of work for staff.

[Translation]

Public Safety

Mrs. Maria Mourani (Ahuntsic, Ind.):  
    Mr. Speaker, in its most recent 2014 report, CSIS indicated that Canadians are going abroad to join jihadist groups, including Daech, and commit terrorist acts, mainly in Iraq and Syria. The possible return of these individuals poses an obvious threat to Canada's national security.
    What does the government intend to do put an end to this new scourge that could one day come back to haunt us?

[English]

Ms. Roxanne James (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, our Conservative government is a proud partner in the global fight against terrorism. That is why we have given security agencies a number of tools to combat terrorism and continue to protect law-abiding Canadian families from those who would seek to do them harm.
    I would like to also remind the House that it was this government, the Conservative government, that introduced the first counter-terrorism strategy, passed the Combating Terrorism Act, and most recently, the Strengthening Canadian Citizenship Act, which actually revokes citizenship from those who commit terrorism in Canada against our allies. I would also like to remind the House that we were the only party who voted in favour of that legislation.

Foreign Affairs

Mr. Dean Del Mastro (Peterborough, Cons. Ind.):  
    Mr. Speaker, on July 17, Malaysian flight MH17 was shot down flying through Ukrainian airspace, killing all 298 civilians on board. Despite the very real demands and focus that the ongoing crisis in the Ukraine requires, the global community must follow through and ensure the perpetrators involved in this outrageous act are held accountable.
    I want to thank the Prime Minister and the Minister of Foreign Affairs for forcefully addressing this provocative act, expressing both outrage toward the perpetrators and profound sympathy for the innocent victims and their families. Can the Prime Minister please update the House on Canada's efforts in ensuring that these perpetrators are held accountable?
Hon. Deepak Obhrai (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and for International Human Rights, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, as the Prime Minister has said, we extend our deepest sympathy to the families of all those who lost their lives in this unnecessary tragedy. Indeed it was a tragedy, and as the Prime Minister has said and the Minister of Foreign Affairs has said, we would like an international investigation to find out who actually was responsible for bringing down this aircraft. We know it was brought down in the area that was held by the rebels, and we are looking for an international investigation to come to a final conclusion as to who actually brought this aircraft down.

  (1515)  

[Translation]

Presence in Gallery

The Speaker:  
    I wish to draw the attention of members to the presence in our gallery of His Excellency Charles Koffi Diby, Minister of State and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of the Ivory Coast.
    Some hon. members: Hear, hear!

[English]

The Speaker:  
    While members are on their feet, I wonder if they will join me in welcoming Acting Clerk Marc Bosc and in sending our best wishes to Audrey O'Brien for a speedy recovery.

ROUTINE PROCEEDINGS

[Routine Proceedings]

[English]

Canadian Human Rights Commission

The Speaker:  
    I have the honour to lay upon the table a special report from the Canadian Human Rights Commission concerning the impacts of Bill C-21, an act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act.

[Translation]

    Pursuant to Standing Order 108(3)(e), this report is deemed permanently referred to the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights.

[English]

Government Response to Petitions

Mr. Tom Lukiwski (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36(8), I have the honour to table, in both official languages, the government's response to 136 petitions.

Foreign Affairs

Hon. Deepak Obhrai (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and for International Human Rights, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, and pursuant to Standing Order 32(2), I have the honour to table, in both official languages, the treaties entitled “Protocol Amending the Convention Between the Government of Canada and the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Physical Evasion with Respect to Taxes on Income and Capital Gains”, signed at London on September 8, 1978, as amended by the protocol signed at Ottawa on 15 April, 1980, by the protocol signed at London on 16 October, 1985, and by the protocol signed at London on May 7, 2003, done at London on 21 July, 2014; “Agreement Between Canada and the European Union on the Transfer and Processing of Passenger Name Record Data”, done at Brussels on 25 June, 2014; “Amendment to Annex 7 of the International Health Regulations, 2005”, adopted at Geneva on 24, May 2014; and “An Agreement Between the Government of Canada and the Government of the United States of America to Improve International Tax Compliance to Enhance Exchange of Information under the Convention Between Canada and the United States with Respect to Taxes on Income and Capital”, done at Ottawa on February 2014.
    An explanatory memorandum is included with each treaty.

Committees of the House

Citizenship and Immigration  

Hon. Chris Alexander (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 32(2), I have the honour to table, in both official languages, the government's response to the report of the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration entitled “Protecting Canada and Canadians, Welcoming the World: A Modern Visa System to Help Canada Seize the Moment”.

Global Centre for Pluralism

Hon. Tim Uppal (Minister of State (Multiculturalism), CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 32(2) I have the honour to table, in both official languages, the Global Centre for Pluralism's annual report for 2013.

Committees of the House

Justice and Human Rights  

Mr. Mike Wallace (Burlington, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the seventh report of the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights in relation to Bill C-36, an act to amend the Criminal Code in response to the Supreme Court of Canada decision in Attorney General of Canada v. Bedford and to make consequential amendments to other Acts. The committee has studied the bill and has decided to report it back to the House with amendments presented by all parties of this House.

Business of the House

Hon. Peter Van Loan (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, before I make my motion I would like to designate Tuesday, September 16, and Tuesday, September 23, 2014, as the first and second allotted days.
    There have been discussions among the parties, as per usual, and with respect to the address of the President of Ukraine on Wednesday, I believe you will find unanimous consent for the following motion:
    That, notwithstanding any Standing Order or usual practice of the House, when the House adjourns on Tuesday, September 16, 2014, it shall stand adjourned to Thursday, September 18, 2014; and that, for the purposes of Standing Order 28, the House shall be deemed to have sat on Wednesday, September 17, 2014;
    That, when the House adjourns on Tuesday, September 16, 2014, item No. 1 in the order of precedence be dropped to the bottom of the Order of Precedence;
    That any recorded division deferred, or which would have ordinarily been deferred to Wednesday, September 17, 2014, pursuant to Standing Order 93(1)(b), shall stand deferred to Wednesday, September 24, 2014, immediately before the time provided for Private Members' Business;
    That the Address of the President of Ukraine, to be delivered in the Chamber of the House of Commons at 2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, September 17, 2014, before Members of the Senate and the House of Commons, together with all introductory and related remarks, be printed as an appendix to the House of Commons Debates for Thursday, September 18, 2014, and form part of the records of this House; and
    That the media recording and transmission of such address, introductory and related remarks be authorized pursuant to established guidelines for such occasions.

  (1520)  

The Speaker:  
    Does the hon. government House leader have the unanimous consent of the House to propose the motion?
    Some hon. members: Agreed.
    The Speaker: The House has heard the terms of the motion. Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?
    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    (Motion agreed to)

Petitions

Ottawa River  

Mr. Paul Dewar (Ottawa Centre, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, today I would like to present petitions from residents from the national capital region who want to see the government act on the cleanup of the Ottawa River. Over 500 million litres of untreated raw sewage flows into the Ottawa River every year, and they would like to see our government live up to its commitment to actually help with the Ottawa River action plan and to reinstate protections under the navigable waters act.

Violence Against Women  

Ms. Kirsty Duncan (Etobicoke North, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, I present a petition that points out women and girls of all ages face violence every day. Violence against women and girls takes an incalculable human toll. Violence drives over a hundred thousand women and children out of their homes and into shelters each year. In Canada, women continue to outnumber men nine to one as victims of assault by a partner or spouse.
    The petitioners call upon the government to work in partnership with the provinces, territories, and stakeholders to develop a national strategy and action plan to end violence against women and to hold a national inquiry into missing and murdered indigenous women in Canada.

Canada Post  

Ms. Chris Charlton (Hamilton Mountain, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, this summer I was proud to work with CUPW local 548 to save door-to-door mail delivery in my riding of Hamilton Mountain. We circulated postcards and petitions that returned with thousands of signatures. I am pleased to table them on this first day of the fall session.
    The petitioners all know that one cannot save a business by cutting services and raising prices. They also know that is exactly what the Conservative government has planned for Canada Post. While they can find millions for their well-connected friends, the Conservatives cannot seem to find a way to keep the mail coming to our door.
    The petitioners are appalled that Canada Post wants to eliminate home delivery for millions of customers, slash rural postal hours, put thousands of employees out of work, and then have the gall to raise the price of stamps.
    Our postal service helps connect us, and these cuts will unfairly impact the most vulnerable, including seniors and people with disabilities.
    For all of those reasons, the petitioners call on the Government of Canada to stop these devastating cuts to our postal service and look instead for ways to modernize operations.
    While I know that the rules of the House do not allow me to endorse a petition, let me just conclude by saying how proud I am to stand in solidarity with both my constituents and Hamilton letter carriers on this important issue.

[Translation]

Status of Women  

Ms. Elizabeth May (Saanich—Gulf Islands, GP):  
    Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise today to present two petitions.

[English]

    The first petition is for an issue that one would have thought we would have solved long ago. That is equal pay for work of equal value. Despite years of work in this area, women still earn far less than men for work of identical characteristics, skills, and competence.
    The petitioners in this case are from Calgary, Alberta, as well as from Saskatchewan, and a number are from Vancouver. They petition the House to take measures to enact legislation and policies to promote equality in pay equity.

  (1525)  

The Environment  

Ms. Elizabeth May (Saanich—Gulf Islands, GP):  
    Mr. Speaker, the second petition is from residents of my own riding. They are from Brentwood Bay, Saanichton, Mayne Island, Pender Island, and Victoria. They call on the House of Commons and the government to immediately implement a moratorium against hydraulic fracking based on the evidence that has been tabled before the government that we simply do not know enough yet about the implications of this new technology, particularly as it affects water quality and groundwater.

[Translation]

Mirabel Airport  

Ms. Mylène Freeman (Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, since it was announced that ADM intends to demolish the Mirabel terminal, the community has been very clear that it does not want the demolition to happen. According to information we obtained this summer, the minister gave the go ahead but could still persuade the Mirabel airport administration to stop the demolition.
    However, she is refusing to listen to elected officials from the Mirabel, Laurentian and Montreal regions. Let us hope that she will listen to the thousands of people from Mirabel who have signed this petition calling on her to intervene and ask ADM to stop this demolition.

[English]

Syria  

Mr. Mark Warawa (Langley, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I have two petitions to present.
     The first petition highlights that the growing crisis in Syria has already generated 2.8 million refugees. Canada has committed to resettling 1,300 Syrian refugees.
    The petitioners ask the Government of Canada to increase the resettlement quota for Syrian refugees to 10,000 under an accelerated program.

Impaired Driving  

Mr. Mark Warawa (Langley, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, the second petition represents thousands of people in British Columbia.
     The petitioners highlight that 22-year old Kassandra Kaulius was killed by a drunk driver. A group of people that has also lost loved ones to impaired driving calls itself Families for Justice. These people believe that the current impaired driving laws are too lenient.
     The petitioners call for a new mandatory minimum sentencing for people who have been convicted of impaired driving causing death.

[Translation]

Canada Post  

Ms. Hélène LeBlanc (LaSalle—Émard, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, this summer I took to the streets of Montreal's densely populated neighbourhoods to talk to people about the cuts at Canada Post. The people of LaSalle—Émard immediately signed this petition, which is calling on Canada Post to explore other options in order to modernize the crown corporation's business plan and to continue door-to-door delivery. This measure will adversely affect the people in my riding, including seniors and people with reduced mobility. In solidarity with the people of LaSalle—Émard, I am pleased to present this petition.

[English]

Asbestos  

Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, I am proud to rise today to present a petition signed by literally tens of thousands of Canadians.
    The petitioners call upon Parliament and the House of Commons here assembled to take note that asbestos is the greatest industrial killer that the world has ever known and that Canada still allows asbestos to be used in construction materials, textile products and even children's toys. They point out that more Canadians now die from asbestos than all other industrial or occupational causes combined.
     Therefore, the petitioners call upon Parliament to ban asbestos in all of its forms and institute a just transition program for asbestos workers and the communities that they live in, to end all government subsidies of asbestos both in Canada and abroad and to stop blocking international health and safety conventions designed to protect workers from asbestos such as the Rotterdam Convention.

Canada Post  

Mr. Kevin Lamoureux (Winnipeg North, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, here we are again after the summer recess. I have had the opportunity to meet with literally hundreds of individuals and get signatures from even that many more in regard to Canada Post. They have submitted postcards, signed letters and much more.
     It is with pleasure that I table these petitions which ask for the government to give strength to Canada Post. The petitioners look at having door-to-door delivery as a very important aspect of mail from Canada Post.

Questions on the Order Paper

Mr. Tom Lukiwski (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, as is the normal custom after a long adjournment, we have a number of questions to be answered today, so I hope you will bear with me and we will try to get through them.
    The following questions will be answered today: Nos. 503, 504, 506, 518, 517, 519, 529, 544, 548, 549, 559, 568, 571, 572, 574, 588, 607, 609, 615 to 617, 623, 627, 629, 631 to 635, 637, 639 and 641.

[Text]

Question No. 503--
Mr. Malcolm Allen:
     With regard to the use of azodicarbonamide in Canada: (a) in what year was Health Canada’s most recent assessment of azodicarbonamide and its chemical by-products completed; (b) what research and data was used in this assessment; (c) did Health Canada’s most recent assessment of azodicarbonamide include analysis of its chemical by-products semicarbazide and urethane and, if so, what were the results of this analysis; (d) when does Health Canada plan to undertake its next assessment of azodicarbonamide and its chemical by-products; (e) what has Health Canada established to be a safe, acceptable daily intake of azodicarbonamide and its chemical by-products; (f) what information does the government collect to ensure that Canadians are not exceeding the safe, acceptable daily intake of azodicarbonamide and its chemical by-products; (g) how many products containing azodicarbonamide have been approved for sale in Canada; and (h) what labelling requirements has the government established in regard to products containing azodicarbonamide and its chemical by-products?
Hon. Rona Ambrose (Minister of Health, CPC):
     Mr. Speaker, Health Canada completed a thorough safety assessment of the use of azodicarbonamide in 2006.
     The 2006 assessment took into consideration the available scientific data as well as the outcomes of scientific research conducted by Health Canada to investigate the safety of azodicarbonamide.
    Health Canada’s assessment of azodicarbonamide did take into consideration exposure to one of its main breakdown products, semicarbazide. While Health Canada scientists were aware that small amounts of urethane, or ethyl carbamate, can form in some products associated with azodicarbonamide use, the levels were considered to be consistent with low urethane levels that can naturally form in a number of foods and alcoholic beverages during fermentation.
    The results of Health Canada’s studies on semicarbazide demonstrated that manufacturers were using azodicarbonamide according to Canada’s food additive provisions and that the levels of semicarbazide formed did not represent a health risk to consumers.
    Health Canada is not aware of any recent scientific evidence that would suggest the current use of azodicarbonamide as a food additive, or exposure to semicarbazide, represents a health concern to consumers. Therefore, there are no plans to undertake another assessment in the near future. Should any scientific evidence indicate that the use of azodicarbonamide as a food additive presents a risk to human health, Health Canada would take appropriate action that could include reassessing the substance and amending the provisions that permit its use.
    No acceptable daily intake has been established for azodicarbonamide or its chemical by-products, as the results of Health Canada’s initial assessment and most recent reassessment have deemed such a level unnecessary.
    In addition, following the 2006 evaluation, it was concluded that there was a very large margin of safety between doses associated with adverse effects in experimental animals and the maximum dietary exposure for Canadians. Therefore, an acceptable daily intake was also not established for semicarbazide.
    Currently, azodicarbonamide can be used as a food additive in bread, flour or whole wheat flour at a maximum level of 45 parts per million, or ppm, in the flour. The regulatory provisions for the use of azodicarbonamide as an additive are “enabling” provisions, meaning that food manufacturers can choose to use azodicarbonamide, provided they do so in accordance with its legal conditions of use, however, they are not obligated to use it.
    When used according to the stated conditions in the Food and Drug Regulations, exposure to either azodicarbonamide or its breakdown products, semicarbazide and urethane, do not represent a health risk to consumers. It is the responsibility of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency to ensure that all food additives approved for use in Canada comply with their stated conditions of use.
    When offered for sale, flour and whole wheat flour must carry a list declaring all ingredients, including any food additives contained within, such as azodicarbonamide.
Question No. 504--
Ms. Megan Leslie:
    With regard to Parks Canada’s Parks Passport program: (a) for the time period of 2010 to 2013, broken down by month and year, (i) how many students registered for the program, (ii) of those who registered, how many attended, (iii) from what schools, (iv) in which region and city; and (b) broken down by region, province and year, which parks participated in the program?
Hon. Leona Aglukkaq (Minister of the Environment, Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency and Minister for the Arctic Council, CPC):
     Mr. Speaker, between 2010 and 2013, Parks Canada mailed 1,531,749 passes for entry into Parks Canada places to schools with grade 8 or secondary II students, or enough passes to distribute to every eligible student. Once the passes are distributed, no registration is required to validate them. Parks Canada calculated the required number of passes in collaboration with its program partners, based on information provided by school boards about the number of eligible students, including those in split classes, in their schools. The agency has endeavoured to be inclusive of home schooling, private schools, federally funded schools on reserves and charter schools, which are not included in the 347,694 grade 8 or secondary II students reported by Statistics Canada.
    The yearly totals are as follows: in May 2010, 390,365 passes were distributed; in April 2011, 381,142 passes were distributed; in March 2012, 380,639 passes were distributed; and in March 2013, 379,603 passes were distributed.
    Students are not required to register their pass for use at Parks Canada places. However, based on Parks Canada’s tracking systems, which include point of sale systems and manual procedures, an estimated 17,000 passes were used to enter Parks Canada places between 2010 and 2013.
    To respect the privacy of minors, students entering Parks Canada places with a My Parks Pass are not required to provide their school’s details. Therefore, data identifying the schools is not available.
    To respect the privacy of Canadians, particularly minors, Parks Canada does not collect personal information from individuals using the My Parks Pass to enter Parks Canada places. Therefore, data on region and city is not available.
    All parks and sites administered by Parks Canada participate in the My Parks Pass program through online and in-class activities. All Parks Canada places that charge an entry fee also participate by accepting the pass for free entry and discount.
Question No. 506--
Ms. Peggy Nash:
    With regard to gender-based analyses carried out by the Department of Finance: what are the titles, dates and authors of any reports or studies done by the department that provide a gender-based analysis of (i) income splitting, (ii) Tax-Free Savings Accounts, (iii) the Child Arts Tax Credit, (iv) the employee stock option deduction, (v) the Children’s Fitness Tax Credit, (vi) pension income splitting, (vii) partial deduction of meals and entertainment expenses, (viii) partial inclusion of capital gains, (ix) the moving expense deduction, (x) the flow-through share deduction, (xi) cuts to program spending?
Mr. Andrew Saxton (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, CPC):
     Mr. Speaker, the Department of Finance undertakes gender-based analysis, GBA, on all new policy proposals for ministerial consideration, including tax and spending measures, where appropriate and where data exists.
    With regard to income splitting and pension income splitting, a measure to allow pension income splitting was announced in the tax fairness plan on October 31, 2006, and a GBA for the measure was completed by the Department of Finance. No other measure related to income splitting has been announced or implemented by the Government of Canada. As such, no additional information about a GBA in respect of this proposal is available.
    With regard to tax-free savings accounts, this measure was introduced in the budget tabled on February 26, 2008. The GBA for the measure was completed by the Department of Finance in advance of the tabling of the budget.
    With regard to the children’s arts tax credit, this measure was introduced in the budget tabled on March 22, 2011. The GBA for the measure was completed by the Department of Finance in advance of the tabling of the budget.
    With regard to the employee stock option deduction, this measure was introduced in 1977. Introduction of the measure predates the government’s 1995 commitment to conduct GBA in respect of new policy proposals.
    With regard to the children’s fitness tax credit, this measure was introduced in the budget tabled on May 2, 2006. The GBA for the measure was completed by the Department of Finance in advance of the tabling of the budget.
    With regard to pension income Splitting--see (i).
    With regard to partial deduction of meals and entertainment expenses, this measure was introduced in 1987. Introduction of the measure predates the government’s 1995 commitment to conduct GBA in respect of new policy proposals.
    With regard to partial inclusion of capital gains, this measure was introduced in 1972. Introduction of the measure predates the government’s 1995 commitment to conduct GBA in respect of new policy proposals.
    With regard to the moving expense deduction, this measure was introduced in 1971. Introduction of the measure predates the government’s 1995 commitment to conduct GBA in respect of new policy proposals.
    With regard to the flow-through share deduction, the current flow-through share regime was introduced in 1986, but previous forms of the regime have been allowed by the Income Tax Act since the 1950s. Introduction of the measure predates the government’s 1995 commitment to conduct GBA in respect of new policy proposals.
    With regard to cuts to program spending, sponsoring departments and the Treasury Board Secretariat undertook a GBA on savings proposals that informed recommendations to Treasury Board and budget 2012 planned reductions to departmental spending.
Question no 514 --
Mr. Scott Simms:
     With regard to the Public Prosecution Service of Canada, what are the file numbers of all ministerial briefings or departmental correspondence between the government and the Public Prosecution Service of Canada since the department’s creation, broken down by (i) minister or department, (ii) relevant file number, (iii) correspondence or file type, (iv) date, (v) purpose, (vi) origin, (vii) intended destination, (viii) other officials copied or involved?
Hon. Peter MacKay (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, the Public Prosecution Service of Canada, PPSC, was created on December 12, 2006, when the Director of Public Prosecutions Act, part 3 of the Federal Accountability Act, came into force.
    The PPSC is an independent organization, reporting to Parliament through the Attorney General of Canada, and is responsible for prosecuting offences under more than 50 federal statutes and for providing prosecution-related legal advice to law enforcement agencies.
    Correspondence between the PPSC and other government departments mainly comprises communications between Crown counsel and various investigative agencies, and is protected by solicitor-client privilege and/or litigation privilege. As well, in order to identify all correspondence with other government departments, it would be necessary to conduct a manual search of the files and records of all PPSC employees and agents, which is not feasible given the operational and time demands required to do so.
Question No. 517--
Hon. Ralph Goodale:
    With regard to federal non-refundable tax credits for public transit, children’s fitness and children’s arts: how many Canadians who submitted income tax returns did not have a high enough income to be able to use each in the 2011, 2012 and 2013 tax years?
Hon. Kerry-Lynne D. Findlay (Minister of National Revenue, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, individual tax filers with taxable income, as reported on line 260 of the general income tax and benefit return, under the basic personal amount do not pay federal income tax.
    The figures provided below include all individual filers whose taxable income was less than the basic personal amount. The figures are not limited to those who applied for the above-mentioned credits, as it is expected that some individuals will choose not to claim the credits given that their taxable income is less than the basic personal amount, and claiming any of these credits would not result in additional tax savings. As such, the Canada Revenue Agency, CRA, cannot determine how many of these individuals may have been able to benefit from one or more of the above-mentioned credits.
    The number of individual tax filers with taxable income less than the basic personal amount for tax years 2011 and 2012 are as follows. As the CRA is currently processing 2013 tax year returns, data is not currently available for that taxation year.
    For 2011, the number of filers was 6,636,600, with a basic personal amount of $10,527; and for 2012, it was 6,462,350, with a basic personal amount of $10,822. The figures are rounded to the nearest 10. They are from the CRA T1 Data Mart and include all initially assessed returns processed up to May 2, 2014, that is, the most recent available data.
Question No. 519--
Mr. Glenn Thibeault:
    With regard to the Hiring Credit for Small Business, since 2011-2012: broken down by fiscal year up to and including the current fiscal year, (a) what is the total cost of the Hiring Credit for Small Business; (b) what is the total number of small businesses that successfully accessed the hiring credit; and (c) what was the average tax savings for small business owners who successfully accessed the hiring credit?
Hon. Kerry-Lynne D. Findlay (Minister of National Revenue, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, the 2011 federal budget originally introduced the hiring credit for small business, HCSB. The HCSB was extended in 2012 and expanded and extended again in 2013.
    With regard to (a), the Canada Revenue Agency, CRA, administers the HCSB as part of its daily operations. As HCSB administration costs are not tracked separately, the CRA is unable to respond in the manner requested.
    With regard to (b), the HCSB was a credit intended to stimulate new employment and support small businesses. Since its introduction, a number of Canadian small businesses have successfully accessed the credit. As the CRA tracks the number of employers who have received the HCSB by taxation year, rather than by fiscal period, its response is limited to information for the following tax years: 2011, 551,940 employers; 2012, 550,609 employers; and 2013, 509,544 employers to date. For 2013, the numbers represent a year to date total. It is anticipated that additional filing and processing of employer returns will increase the total number of employers receiving the credit for 2013.
    With regard to (c), the HCSB provides a credit to the taxpayer’s account at a minimum of $2 and a maximum credit of $1,000 based on the taxpayer’s eligibility for the program. The available data focuses on the credit paid to taxpayers and may not fully represent the average tax savings for taxpayers who have successfully accessed the HCSB. The average credit paid to taxpayers by tax year is as follows: 2011, $381.23; 2012, $396.47; and 2013, $422.74 to date. The 2013 HCSB threshold of the employers’ portion of the employment insurance premiums was expanded from $10,000 to $15,000, which potentially has increased the number of taxpayers eligible to receive the maximum credit.
Question No. 529--
Hon. Lawrence MacAulay:
     With regard to contracts under $10,000 granted by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police since January 1, 2013: what are the (a) vendors' names; (b) contracts' reference numbers; (c) dates of the contracts; (d) descriptions of the services provided; (e) delivery dates; (f) original contracts' values; and (g) final contracts' values if different from the original contracts' values?
Hon. Steven Blaney (Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, within the timeframe provided, it would not be possible to manually verify the value of each of the contracts under $10,000 granted by RCMP since January 1, 2013, given the volume of data. As a result, a complete and accurate response could not be produced.
Question No. 544--
Hon. Ralph Goodale:
    With regard to railway grain transportation reporting requirements: for each week in the current crop year, starting August 1, 2013, how much grain was moved, as reported by each of CN Rail and CP Rail from prairie delivery points, (a) to a port for export, indicating (i) the type of grain, (ii) the port in each case; (b) out of country by rail, indicating (i) the type of grain, (ii) the destination in each case; and (c) to final domestic users, indicating the (i) type of grain, (ii) final domestic user in each case?
Hon. Lisa Raitt (Minister of Transport, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, the grain transportation data forwarded to Transport Canada by CN Rail and CP Rail is provided pursuant to the Canada Transportation Act. Section 51(1) of that act states that “information required to be provided to the Minister pursuant to this Act is, when it is received by the Minister, confidential and must not knowingly be disclosed or made available by any person without the authorization of the person who provided the information or documentation.” Consequently, this confidential information cannot be disclosed.
Question No. 548--
Mr. Frank Valeriote:
     With regard to government-wide advertising activities, broken down by department, agency, and institution, since April 1, 2011: (a) how many advertisements have (i) been created in total, broken down by type (cinema, internet, out-of-home, print dailies, print magazine, weekly/community newspapers, radio, television) and by year, (ii) been given an identification number, a name or a Media Authorization Number (ADV number); (b) what is the identification number, name or ADV number for each advertisement listed in (a)(ii); and (c) for the answers to each part of (a), what is (i) the length (seconds or minutes) of each radio advertisement, television advertisement, cinema advertisement, internet advertisement, (ii) the cost for the production or creation of each advertisement, (iii) the companies used to produce or create each advertisement, (iv) the number of times each advertisement has aired or been published, specifying the total number of times and the total length of time (seconds or minutes), broken down by year and by month for each advertisement, (v) the total cost to air or publish each advertisement, broken down by year and by month, (vi) the criteria used to select each of the advertisement placements, (vii) media outlets used to air or publish each advertisement, broken down by year and by month, (viii) the total amount spent per outlet, broken down by year and by month?
Hon. Tony Clement (President of the Treasury Board, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, with regard to (a), (b) and (c) iii, (v), (vii), and (viii), information can be found at http://www.tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca/pub-adv/annuel-annual-eng.html.
    With regard to (c)(i), (ii), (iv), and (vi), the Government of Canada does not disclose information about the specific amounts paid for individual ad placements or the amounts paid to specific media outlets with which it has negotiated rates. This information can be considered third-party business sensitive information, and may be protected under the Access to Information Act.
Question No. 549--
Mr. Marc Garneau:
     With regard to foreign affairs, and specifically applications to export military goods or technology since January 1, 2000: (a) in respect of each such application, how many human rights experts were consulted (i) from within the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, (ii) from within another department, specifying the department, (iii) from within an overseas diplomatic mission, specifying the mission; (b) for each such application, what methodology was employed to demonstrate that there is no reasonable risk that the goods or technology would be used against the civilian population; (c) in assessing that risk for each such application, were consultations undertaken with any of (i) Amnesty International, (ii) Human Rights Watch, (iii) the United Nations, (iv) any other external organization, specifying the organization; and (d) will the government revoke an export permit granted under such an application if there are new or mitigating circumstances or information that indicate the goods or technology may be used, or may have been used, against civilians or in other violations of human rights or international law or norms?
Hon. John Baird (Minister of Foreign Affairs, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, with regard to (a), (b), and (c), applications for permits to export military goods or technology are assessed against a number of criteria, one of which is assessing the risk that the proposed export could result in human rights violations in the destination country. A number of DFATD divisions, including missions abroad, are involved in the review of permit applications. Consultations are also undertaken with the Department of National Defence and other agencies or departments as needed. Assessing risks of human rights violations is a key consideration during the review process. As part of their responsibilities, officers at our missions abroad and at geographic divisions at DFATD headquarters closely follow human rights issues, meeting regularly with human rights groups and organizations, and accessing information from these groups and organizations, from other non-governmental organizations, and civil society. This information is used to inform the consultation process and assess whether there is a significant risk that an export is likely to result in human rights violations in the destination country.
    With regard to (d), officials closely monitor international developments that have the potential to negatively impact regional security, or that are resulting, or are likely to result, in violations of human rights. In cases where the situation changes in a destination country, export permits can be suspended or cancelled should it be determined that the export has become inconsistent with Canada's foreign and defence policies and interests, including on human rights grounds.
Question No. 559--
Mr. Kevin Lamoureux:
    With regard to government answers to written questions: (a) what is the rationale for the policy of the Privy Council Office not to release tabular or written material prepared in response to written questions in the native digital format in which it was prepared; (b) on what dates was this policy (i) established, (ii) revised; and (c) what are the dates, file numbers, and titles of any orders, memoranda, directives, or other documents in which this policy has been set forth?
Mr. Tom Lukiwski (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, except for those questions requiring an oral answer pursuant to the Standing Orders of the House of Commons, the government’s answers to questions on the order paper are contained in documents tabled in Parliament that bear a minister’s or parliamentary secretary’s signature. Any other version of a response is considered a draft and unofficial.
Question No. 568--
Mr. Murray Rankin:
     With regard to the DSC/Fiscal Arbitrator tax scheme: (a) when did the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) initially execute an investigation; (b) when did the CRA post a warning to the public; (c) how many citizens owed funds to the CRA, broken down by (i) province, (ii) region; (d) what were the (i) original amounts owed, (ii) penalties owed, (iii) interest owed; (e) what was the range of penalties; (f) as of June 5, 2014, how much (i) is still owed, (ii) how much has been paid, (iii) how many have paid the full balance, (iv) how many have paid a partial balance, (v) how many have not paid towards the balance; (g) how many have filed for bankruptcy and, as a result of bankruptcy, how much has been lost to the CRA in interest and penalties; (h) in total, how many files (i) received refunds, (ii) declined a refund; and (i) what would be the total amount owing had all files received a refund?
Hon. Kerry-Lynne D. Findlay (Minister of National Revenue, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, with regard to (a), Section 241 of the Income Tax Act precludes the Canada Revenue Agency, the CRA, from providing taxpayer-specific information or information that would identify specific taxpayers; therefore, the CRA will not comment on an investigation that it may or may not be undertaking.
    With regard to (b), on an ongoing basis, the CRA provides information to Canadians on tax matters, including warnings to beware of groups or individuals who conspire, counsel, and promote tax avoidance schemes. The CRA continues to issue substantial public warnings about tax schemes and inform Canadians about how to protect themselves from fraud through tax alerts, news releases, and fact sheets–all of which can be found on the CRA website--as well as through outreach and partnerships with stakeholders.
    Information on these schemes and how to identify and avoid them is readily available to anyone seeking it. Through these various media the CRA also informs Canadians about the consequences of participating in and promoting various schemes, how to report participation in a scheme they become aware of, and how to come forward using the voluntary disclosures program to correct past tax mistakes before criminal and financial consequences occur.
    When a conviction related to an illegal tax avoidance scheme occurs, the CRA issues a regional conviction news release to inform the Canadian public in order to help others who may have unknowingly participated in similar schemes and to deter others from participating. More information on convictions that have occurred within the last year is available on the CRA website.
    Under certain circumstances, including when it may provide a more timely warning of ongoing schemes, the CRA issues news releases when charges are laid. The CRA has also provided interviews to the media to inform the Canadian public about participating in tax schemes, including the risks and costs they could incur and how to identify them and avoid taking part.
    Specifically to warn taxpayers of schemes and fraud, in 2006 the CRA created tax alerts—a warning issued to the media, posted to the CRA website, and issued through an e-mail list and RSS feed. Some tax alerts have made specific reference to schemes involving fictitious business losses, while others have been broader, encompassing a call to action to seek independent advice from a trusted tax professional before becoming involved in a scheme or arrangement. Many of these alerts have reminded Canadians that if it looks too good to be true, it probably is.
    The CRA also collaborates with the Competition Bureau and the RCMP in its yearly promotion of Fraud Prevention Month. The CRA issues a yearly fraud prevention news release that reminds Canadians to protect themselves and leads them to the CRA’s website, where a comprehensive web resource provides them with further details. Other products such as fact sheets and checklists on how Canadians can protect themselves have accompanied those releases.
    In addition to the yearly Fraud Prevention Month promotion, the CRA has also issued several other warnings about fraud or schemes. These have been distributed using News Canada articles, news releases, and tax tips during income tax filing season, and through the CRA’s Twitter feed, which prominently features tweets on schemes, scams, and fraud. Regardless of the exact nature of the warning, web links to information on a variety of schemes and fraud are provided. Promoting those resources helps visitors learn about how to protect themselves on a variety of fronts.
    With regard to parts (c) through (i), the CRA routinely audits questionable business losses. The CRA does not track information by specific tax scheme, such as DSC and Fiscal Arbitrators. Furthermore, section 241 of the Income Tax Act precludes the CRA from providing taxpayer-specific information or information that would identify specific taxpayers.
Question No. 571--
Mr. Ryan Cleary:
     With regard to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans: (a) have there been any reports written on seismic testing and the effects on fish stocks in the Gulf of St. Lawrence since 1996; and (b) have there been any reports written on seismic testing and the effects on fish stocks off Newfoundland and Labrador since 2006?
Hon. Gail Shea (Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, the potential impact of seismic testing on fish, invertebrates, marine mammals, and sea turtles has been an area of study for many years. Researchers within Fisheries and Oceans Canada, as well as others within Canada and internationally, have conducted numerous studies, ranging from laboratory-scale experiments looking at effects on the physiology, behaviour, and survivorship of individual animals up to large-scale field studies looking at changes in fish stocks and fish catches before, during, and after seismic surveys. This includes research reports, summaries of broad syntheses, environmental impact statements, and the Canadian Statement of Practice, which guides the applications of seismic surveys. Most of these studies are applicable to all locations. In addition, there have been some reports produced on the specific areas mentioned:
    With regard to (a), in the Gulf of St. Lawrence there have been reports produced on potential impacts of seismic testing as part of DFO’s review of proposed development projects.
    With regard to (b), in the waters off Newfoundland and Labrador there have been reports produced as part of the review of developments proposals, and also some reports on research conducted on lobster, crabs, and fish in local waters.
Question No. 572--
Mr. Ryan Cleary:
     With regard to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans and Articles 39 and 40 of the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO) Conservation and Enforcement Measures: what have been the outcomes of citations issued in Canadian waters to foreign fishing vessels over the past five years?
Hon. Gail Shea (Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, as the port citations were only just issued in May of this year, the Government of Canada has not yet been informed of the outcome by the vessels’ home countries.
Question No. 574--
Mr. Ryan Cleary:
     With regard to the Department of Canadian Heritage: have there been any studies on the infrastructure at Cape Spear Lighthouse National Historic Site or Fort Amherst National Historic Site since 2000?
Mr. Rick Dykstra (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, the Department of Canadian Heritage has not conducted any studies on the infrastructure at Cape Spear Lighthouse National Historic Site or at Fort Amherst National Historic Site since 2000.
Question No. 588--
Ms. Yvonne Jones:
     With regard to corrections, since November 27, 2012: (a) has any department or agency conducted any review or assessment of physical conditions, practices, policies, or any other matter, pertaining to (i) the Baffin Correctional Centre in Iqaluit, Nunavut, (ii) correctional services in Nunavut in general; (b) what are the details, including dates and file numbers, of each such review or assessment; (c) has any department or agency conducted any review or assessment of physical conditions, practices, policies, or any other matter, pertaining to (i) Her Majesty’s Penitentiary in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador, (ii) correctional services in Newfoundland and Labrador in general; and (d) what are the details, including dates and file numbers, of each such review or assessment?
Hon. Steven Blaney (Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, with regard to (a)(i), (a)(ii), and (b), the Department of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, or PS, has not conducted any review or assessment pertaining to the Baffin Correctional Centre or any other correctional services in Nunavut. This is a territorial institution, not a federal institution.
    With regard to (c)(i), (c)(ii), and (d), PS has not conducted any review or assessment pertaining to Her Majesty’s Penitentiary or any other correctional services in Newfoundland and Labrador. This is a provincial institution, not a federal institution.
    With regard to (a)(i), since November 27, 2012, Correctional Service of Canada, CSC, has not conducted any review or assessment of physical conditions, practices, policies, or any other matter pertaining to Baffin Correctional Centre in Iqaluit, Nunavut. This is a territorial institution, not a federal institution.
    With regard to (a)(ii), the last review of the Exchange of Service Agreement, or ESA, between CSC and the Territory of Nunavut was completed in April 2012 and is in effect until March 2018; there have been no further reviews of the ESA since November 27, 2012.
    With regard to (b), there have been no further reviews of the ESA since November 27, 2012. As a result, there are no dates and file reviews between CSC and the Government of Nunavut to report.
    With regard to (c)(i), since November 27, 2012, CSC has not conducted any review or assessment of physical conditions, practices, policies, or any other matter pertaining to Her Majesty’s Penitentiary in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador. This is a provincial institution, not a federal institution.
    With regard to (c)(ii), in January 2012, in accordance with the provision of the ESA between CSC and the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador, a review of the ESA was completed to enable CSC to measure the results achieved against objectives set forth in the ESA.
    With regard to (d), this review focused on the continued relevance of the ESA, whether the agreement is effective in meeting its objectives within budget and without unwanted outcomes, whether it is cost-effective, and whether it was implemented as designed.
    While this review did not focus solely on provincial corrections, it was concluded that the ESA has, in all key areas, been implemented as intended. It is fair to say that the success of the program initiatives and many others is due to the high level of collaboration and co-operation between the two jurisdictions at all levels.
    The details, including dates and file numbers, of each discussion between CSC and the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador are not readily available.
    With regard to (a)(i), (a)(ii), and (b), since November 27, 2012, the RCMP has not conducted any review or assessment pertaining to the Baffin Correctional Centre or any other correctional services in Nunavut. This is a territorial institution, not a federal institution.
    (c)(i)(ii)(d) With regard to (c)(i), (c)(ii), and (d), since November 27, 2012, the RCMP has not conducted any review or assessment pertaining to Her Majesty`s Penitentiary in St. John’s or correctional services in Newfoundland and Labrador in general.
Question No. 607--
Mr. Scott Andrews:
     With regard to Marine Atlantic Incorporated and the recent decision to eliminate two vessels crossing per week between Port aux Basques, Newfoundland and Labrador and North Sydney, Nova Scotia: (a) what consultations took place between Marine Atlantic and stakeholder groups in Newfoundland and Labrador, including names of stakeholders and how the consultations took place; (b) what were the established thresholds that had to be met before crossings were cancelled; and (c) what is the projected financial benefit or loss to Marine Atlantic for cancelling these crossings?
Hon. Lisa Raitt (Minister of Transport, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, with regard to (a), no formal consultations took place between Marine Atlantic and stakeholder groups in Newfoundland and Labrador; however, the corporation did have regular informal discussions with members of various stakeholder groups in advance of the schedule change. These discussions centred around decreasing traffic levels with the corporation and trying to better understand the amount of traffic that commercial operators planned on moving during the summer.
    With regard to (b), the decision to change the schedule was not based on specified traffic thresholds. The corporation’s traffic has been declining, leading to revenues that were less than anticipated. Marine Atlantic recognized that it needed to change the schedule in order to better match traffic demand with available capacity and to ensure that the corporation could continue to meet its budgetary obligations.
    With regard to (c), the projected savings from the 2014 summer schedule changes are approximately $4.13 million.
Question No. 608--
Ms. Joyce Murray:
    With regard to the evaluation of options to sustain a Canadian Forces Fighter Capability: (a) has an assessment been made of the capacity of Canada’s CF-18 fleet to contribute to operations beyond 2020; (b) what are the associated costs determined by this calculation, including necessary upgrades to maintain safe and effective operations of each plane, broken down by (i) type of upgrade, (ii) cost; (c) how many CF-18s out of Canada’s current fleet could be upgraded; and (d) what is the estimated new operational timeframe of all planes in part (c), broken down by individual aircraft in the fleet?
Hon. Rob Nicholson (Minister of National Defence, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, as part of the evaluation of options, the CF-18 fleet was assessed for its ability to contribute to operations beyond 2020. The assessment also outlines the rough order magnitude cost estimate to maintain safe and effective operations from an airworthiness, regulatory, and operational relevance perspective.
    Ministers are reviewing a number of reports from the evaluation of options, including fighter capabilities, industrial benefits, costs, and other factors related to the decision to replace Canada's CF-18 fleet.
Question No. 609--
Mr. Scott Andrews:
     With regard to the announcement by the Minister of Transport on May 13, 2014, to strengthen world-class tanker safety systems: (a) what evidence, studies, research, discussions, advice or other methods were used to support the establishment of regional planning and resources to better respond to accidents in each of the following locations, (i) Southern British Columbia, (ii) Saint John and the Bay of Fundy, New Brunswick, (iii) Port Hawkesbury, Nova Scotia, (iv) the Gulf of St. Lawrence; and (b) what evidence, studies, research, discussions, advice or other methods were used to not support the establishment of regional planning and resources to better respond to accidents in Placentia Bay and the South Coast of Newfoundland?
Hon. Lisa Raitt (Minister of Transport, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, as part of the evaluation of options, the CF-18 fleet was assessed for its ability to contribute to operations beyond 2020. The assessment also outlines the rough order magnitude cost estimate to maintain safe and effective operations from an airworthiness, regulatory, and operational relevance perspective.
    Ministers are reviewing a number of reports from the evaluation of options, including fighter capabilities, industrial benefits, costs, and other factors related to the decision to replace Canada's CF-18 fleet.
Question No. 615--
Hon. Wayne Easter:
     With regard to Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA): what are the file numbers of all ministerial briefings or departmental correspondence between the government and CBSA from July 2013 to present, broken down by (i) minister or department, (ii) relevant file number, (iii) correspondence or file type, (iv) date, (v) purpose, (vi) origin, (vii) intended destination, (viii) other officials copied or involved?
Hon. Steven Blaney (Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, a preliminary search was done in ccmMercury, the file tracking system of the CBSA, to find the file numbers of all ministerial briefings or departmental correspondence between the government and the CBSA from July 2013 to June 12, 2014. As a result of the volume and the processing required to provide the detail requested, the CBSA cannot produce a response by the specified deadline.
Question No. 616--
Mr. David McGuinty:
     With regard to the inventory of protests or demonstrations maintained by the Government Operations Centre: (a) which government departments or agencies are involved in the surveillance of public demonstrations; (b) when did the surveillance measures begin; (c) what government resources are employed in the surveillance; (d) for each department or agency, how many staff members have participated in the surveillance reporting system in each fiscal year since surveillance began; (e) what have been all the costs of implementing the surveillance; (f) how long are these surveillance measures intended to last; (g) which government department or agency maintains the data on the protests; (h) how long is such data retained; (i) who are the partners with whom it is shared; and (j) under what authority is it shared?
Hon. Steven Blaney (Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, with regard to (a) through (f), the Government Operations Centre does not conduct surveillance operations.
    With regard to (g), the role of the Government Operations Centre, on behalf of the Government of Canada, is to support response coordination of events affecting the national interest. The Government Operations Centre seeks to maintain situational awareness of those demonstrations that may develop into events affecting the national interest. Situation reports are retained in accordance with the record-keeping accountability requirements of the Library and Archives of Canada Act.
    With regard to (h), information obtained by the Government Operations Centre is retained for 10 years in accordance with the record-keeping accountability requirements of the Library and Archives of Canada Act.
    With regard to (i), the Government Operations Centre works with all federal departments and agencies to ensure a whole-of-government response capability. It facilitates information-sharing for potential and ongoing events with other federal departments, with provinces and territories, and with its partners through regular analysis and reporting. Requests for information are part of the information-sharing process.
    With regard to (j), information collected and situation reports prepared on events affecting the national interest are shared under the authority of the Emergency Management Act and the Department of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Act.
Question No. 617--
Mr. David McGuinty:
     With regard to the telephone survey of nearly 3,000 Canadians conducted by the Reid Group regarding prostitution and delivered to the Department of Justice on February 10, 2014: (a) why is the Department refusing to disclose the information it contains; (b) did the Minister of Justice take the findings of this survey into account in the drafting of the new bill; (c) why did the Minister of Justice not see fit to publish the survey results; and (d) what organizations inside or outside government have received a copy of the survey results?
Hon. Peter MacKay (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, with regard to (a) and (c), the department respects the Government of Canada policy with regard to the undertaking of public opinion research and has delivered the results of this work and the related data to Library and Archives Canada for public release in accordance with the policy. The material is publicly available on the public opinion research reports website.
    With regard to (b), the Minister of Justice does not rely on just one source of information as a basis for informing his decisions. The information collected from the telephone survey on prostitution was a single tool completed to provide the minister with information for use at his discretion.
    With regard to (d), no organizations inside or outside of government received an advance copy of the survey results.
Question No. 623--
Mr. Massimo Pacetti:
     With regard to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC): since June 27, 2011, has the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) or members of the RCMP Senior Executive Committee issued directives or suggestions in order to forbid or discourage RCMP offices or members of the RCMP from (a) providing letters of support to the CRTC on applications or processes that are or were before the CRTC; and (b) communicating with the Minister of Public Safety’s office with regard to applications or processes that are or were before the CRTC and, if so, what are the (i) names of the individuals or office that issued such a directive or suggestion, (ii) dates when the directives or suggestions were issued, (iii) individuals or departments to whom the directives or suggestions were issued, (iv) details as to the content of the directives or suggestions?
Hon. Steven Blaney (Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, with regard to (a), a member of the RCMP senior executive committee instructed RCMP members and employees to refrain from providing letters of support to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission, CRTC, on applications or processes that are or were before the CRTC. The answer to (i) is Executive Director of Public Affairs Daniel Lavoie. The answer to (ii) is February 20, 2013. The answer to (iii) is the RCMP national communications services and communications group of “C” Division, Quebec. The answer to (iv) is that it was to remind those individuals, mentioned in response to (iii), that it would not be appropriate for an RCMP representative to endorse an application before the CRTC as the CRTC is a regulatory organization of the federal government.
    With regard to (b), the RCMP did not issue directives or suggestions in order to forbid or discourage RCMP offices or members of the RCMP from communicating with the office of the Minister of Public Safety with regard to applications or processes that are or were before the CRTC.
Question No. 627--
Ms. Chrystia Freeland:
     With regard to government funding in the province of Ontario, for each fiscal year since 2007-2008 inclusive: (a) what are the details of all grants, contributions, and loans to any organization, body, or group in the province, specifying for each (i) the name of the recipient, (ii) the location of the recipient, namely the municipality and the federal electoral district, (iii) the date, (iv) the amount, (v) the department or agency providing it, (vi) the program under which the grant, contribution, or loan was made, (vii) the nature or purpose; and (b) for each grant, contribution and loan identified in (a), was a press release issued to announce it and, if so, what is the (i) date, (ii) headline, (iii) file number of the press release?
Hon. Peter Van Loan (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, due to the large volume of information involved, the government’s long-standing practice with regard to questions relating to total grants and contributions is to provide an answer for one federal electoral district per question. The government invites the member to specify for which individual riding she would like the requested information and ask the corresponding question.
Question No. 629--
Ms. Lysane Blanchette-Lamothe:
     With regard to refugees: (a) as of June 11, 2014, how many of the 200 Syrian refugees the government committed to resettle were in Canada; (b) what was the average processing time in 2014 for applications for privately sponsored refugees; and (c) what was the average processing time in 2014 for applications for privately sponsored refugees from Syria?
Hon. Chris Alexander (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, insofar as Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) is concerned, the Government of Canada is deeply concerned about the crisis in Syria and will continue to do what it can to best help the Syrian people. Canada has a long and proud tradition of providing protection to those truly in need. We have one of the most fair and generous immigration systems in the world. We welcome about one out of every 10 of all resettled refugees globally, more than almost any industrialized country in the world. Canada is one of the world’s largest providers of humanitarian aid to Syrian refugees. To date, Canada has committed more than $630 million in humanitarian, development and security assistance to the Syrian crisis.
    In response to the June 2013 UNHCR appeal for assistance with extremely vulnerable cases, Canada committed to permanently resettling 1,300 Syrian refugees by the end of 2014, 200 refugees through the government-assisted refugees, or GAR, program and 1,100 through the private sponsorship of refugees, or PSR, program.
    It was only in late 2013 and early 2014 that the UNHCR began to call for increased resettlement efforts as an expression of international solidarity and burden-sharing while providing much needed protection to the most. To meet Canada’s commitment the UNHCR began referring cases to Canada in late 2013.
    In total, since the start of the Syrian conflict, Canada has received over 3,070 applications from Syrians seeking Canada’s protection through the asylum and resettlement programs and we have provided protection to more than 1,230 Syrians.
    As of June 11, 93 Syrian refugees out of the 200 that the government committed to resettle had arrived in Canada. As of July 2, as the minister confirmed to The Globe and Mail newspaper, 177 Syrian refugees of the 200 the government had committed to resettle had arrived in Canada. That number continues to rise. CIC reports processing times on a 12-month rolling period, based on the calendar year, so 2014 processing time data is not yet available. CIC also does not report processing times based on a client’s country of origin but rather by processing centre. As such, this information is not available. That said, robust backlog, and wait time reduction strategies and resources have been implemented to reduce processing times generally.
    Current processing times vary depending on the category. To see our processing times, please visit our website: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/information/times/perm-other.asp.
    Processing times have begun to improve, and where working inventories have been established, cases are being put into process quickly. We continue to work toward processing times at all missions of 12 to 18 months for newly received PSR cases.
    The Government of Canada remains committed to upholding its humanitarian tradition to resettle refugees and offer protection to those in need. CIC continues to work as effectively as possible to resettle refugees given operational and security limitations.
    Canada is working closely with the UNHCR and resettlement countries to determine how best to respond to the needs of Syrian refugees, given the overwhelming scale of the displacement. Canada is reviewing an additional request from the UNHCR for Syrian resettlement as part of our broader response to this crisis. The Government of Canada remains committed to upholding its humanitarian tradition to resettle refugees and offer protection to those in need. CIC continues to work diligently and as effectively as it can to resettle as many refugees as possible.
Question No. 631--
Mr. Francis Scarpaleggia:
     With respect to an accidental release in March 2011 of industrial wastewater from a Suncor oil sands project into the Athabasca River: (a) when did the government of Alberta notify the federal government of the spill; (b) was the notification in (a) done pursuant to the Canada-Alberta Environmental Occurrences Notification Agreement; (c) what fines did the federal government impose for this violation of the Fisheries Act; (d) what non-monetary penalties did the federal government impose for this violation of the Fisheries Act; (e) if fines or non-monetary penalties were not imposed, for what reasons were they not imposed; and (f) with regard to the federal government’s investigation of the incident, (i) on what date was the investigation opened, (ii) on what date was the investigation closed and (iii) what was the reason for the closing of the investigation?
Hon. Leona Aglukkaq (Minister of the Environment, Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency and Minister for the Arctic Council, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, the answer to part (a) is on Thursday, March 24, 2011 at 4:43 p.m.
    In regard to part (b), yes, the Alberta CIC notification centre sent a summary email of the occurrence and a link to the full Suncor report to an Environment Canada environmental emergencies officer in the Edmonton office. The CIC notification reference number was 245344.
    Regarding (c), the answer is none.
    Regarding (d), the answer is none.
    With regard to (e), information gathered during this investigation has determined that Suncor has been operating their wastewater system diligently and that the March 21, 2011, incident could not have been reasonably foreseen. Consequently, no charges were laid against Suncor. On November 8, 2011, the file was approved for closure, with no recommended enforcement action.
    The answer to (f)(i) is on March 25, 2011; and (f)(ii) is November 8, 2011. Finally, (f)(iii), was answered in the response to (e).
Question No. 632--
Mr. Francis Scarpaleggia:
     With respect to the government’s response aimed at ensuring the safety of drug compounds to the under-dosing of chemotherapy drugs, discovered on March 20, 2013 at four Ontario hospitals: (a) what actions have been taken, with (i) drug compounders, (ii) each of the provinces and territories, in order to establish a federal regulatory framework for this sector; (b) what steps remain to be taken to successfully establish a comprehensive federal regulatory regime for drug compounders, similar to that which exists for drug manufacturers; (c) what new rules will be included with regard to purchasing protocols for compounding inputs; (d) will these protocols be equivalent to those for manufacturers; (e) how will compliance with the rules in (c) be monitored and enforced; (f) how does the government monitor and enforce manufacturing and purchasing protocols for drug manufacturers; and (g) how does the government ensure that monitoring and compliance are sufficient to ensure the safety of all Canadians who consume medications?
Hon. Rona Ambrose (Minister of Health, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, with regard to part (a) of the question, since the under-dosing incident, Health Canada has undertaken these actions.
    First, on April 19, 2013, Health Canada published the “Interim Regulatory Oversight of Admixing and Compounding” statement, allowing organizations involved in these activities to continue providing these services, if they meet certain conditions, while the department and the provinces and territories, or PTs, worked together to determine the long-term oversight of these activities.
    Second, Health Canada convened the Ad Hoc Federal-Provincial-Territorial Working Group on Admixing and Compounding to collaboratively work toward two goals: to examine the scope and extent of hospital pharmacy outsourcing of drug compounding and admixing across Canada; and to determine the appropriate oversight of these activities. Health Canada also convened a sub-working group to bring clarity to the delineation between federal and PT oversight of these activities.
    With regard to part (b), Health Canada has also been working collaboratively with key stakeholders such as the National Association of Pharmacy Regulatory Authorities and the Canadian Society of Hospital Pharmacists to determine how best to achieve regulatory clarity to enhance patient safety, and improve predictability and transparency going forward.
    In regard to (c), (d), and (e), our government is determined that Canadians will have tough, effective regulations for drug safety. Health Canada has been actively working on a proposal for a federal approach to commercial compounding and initiated consultations in June 2014 to gain feedback from PTs and other key stakeholders on elements of the proposal and its implementation.
     In regard to (c), details will be developed during the regulatory process in consultation with stakeholders.
    In regard to (d), the proposed regulatory requirements would be proportional to the level of risk associated with the type of activity in question.
     In regard to (e), proposed federal regulations would be an extension of existing regulatory frameworks governing the manufacturing of drugs, and Health Canada would develop an appropriate compliance and enforcement approach based on existing processes and procedures.
     In regard to (f), Health Canada conducts routine inspections on a risk-based cycle to monitor compliance with the regulatory requirements, including the requirement to have and follow appropriate protocols related to the manufacturing of drugs. When non-compliance is identified, Health Canada verifies the corrective action taken by the manufacturer and takes appropriate enforcement action to protect the health and safety of Canadians.
    In regard to (g), Health Canada administers an inspection program to regularly monitor the compliance of drug manufacturers with the regulatory requirements. Policies, guidelines and procedures related to the inspection program are regularly reviewed and audited to support continuous improvement so that Health Canada’s inspection program provides effective oversight to help protect the health and safety of Canadians. The department also participates in ongoing assessment activities with international partners to confirm the international equivalence of the Canadian inspection system.
    Health Canada is also enhancing the integrity of the health product supply chain in Canada by educating stakeholders and improving the oversight of the ingredients found in health products in accordance with the new active pharmaceutical ingredients regulations. In addition to the existing measures in place to protect the health and safety of Canadians, our government is enhancing patient safety by C-17, Vanessa’s Law, which will require the reporting of adverse drug reactions by health institutions, mandatory recalls of unsafe drugs, and increased fines and penalties.
Question No. 633--
Hon. Mark Eyking:
     With regard to the Correctional Service of Canada: what are the file numbers of all ministerial briefings or departmental correspondence between the government and the Correctional Service of Canada from July 2013 to present, broken down by (i) minister or department, (ii) relevant file number, (iii) correspondence or file type, (iv) date, (v) purpose, (vi) origin, (vii) intended destination, (viii) other officials copied or involved?
Hon. Steven Blaney (Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, CSC is unable to respond to the request within the given timeframe. There are variations in the manner with which ministerial briefings and departmental correspondence are tracked and CSC’s electronic document tracking database cannot be used to produce the requested information; therefore, an electronic search for the requested records is not possible. As a result, a manual search of files would be required in order to respond to this request. System limitations and the amount of resources that would be required for such a search prevent CSC from providing a full and consistent response to the request.
Question No. 634--
Hon. Mark Eyking:
     With regard to government funding, for each fiscal year since 2007-2008 inclusive: (a) what are the details of all grants, contributions, and loans to any organization, body, or group in the province of Nova Scotia, providing for each (i) the name of the recipient, (ii) the location of the recipient, indicating the municipality and the federal electoral district, (iii) the date, (iv) the amount, (v) the department or agency providing it, (vi) the program under which the grant, contribution, or loan was made, (vii) the nature or purpose; and (b) for each grant, contribution and loan identified in (a), was a press release issued to announce it and, if so, what is the (i) date, (ii) headline, (iii) file number of the press release?
Hon. Peter Van Loan (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, due to the large volume of information involved, the government’s long-standing practice with regard to questions relating to total grants and contributions is to provide an answer for one federal electoral district per question. The government invites the member to specify for which individual riding he would like the requested information and ask the corresponding question.
Question No. 635--
Ms. Judy Foote:
    With regard to government funding, for each fiscal year since 2007-2008 inclusive: (a) what are the details of all grants, contributions, and loans to any organization, body, or group in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, providing for each (i) the name of the recipient, (ii) the location of the recipient, indicating the municipality and the federal electoral district, (iii) the date, (iv) the amount, (v) the department or agency providing it, (vi) the program under which the grant, contribution, or loan was made, (vii) the nature or purpose; and (b) for each grant, contribution and loan identified in (a), was a press release issued to announce it and, if so, what is the (i) date, (ii) headline, (iii) file number of the press release?
Hon. Peter Van Loan (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, due to the large volume of information involved, the government’s long-standing practice with regard to questions relating to total grants and contributions is to provide an answer for one federal electoral district per question. The government invites the member to specify for which individual riding she would like the requested information and ask the corresponding question.
Question No. 637--
Hon. Dominic LeBlanc:
    With regard to government funding, for each fiscal year since 2007-2008 inclusive: (a) what are the details of all grants, contributions, and loans to any organization, body, or group in the province of New Brunswick, providing for each (i) the name of the recipient, (ii) the location of the recipient, indicating the municipality and the federal electoral district, (iii) the date, (iv) the amount, (v) the department or agency providing it, (vi) the program under which the grant, contribution, or loan was made, (vii) the nature or purpose; and (b) for each grant, contribution and loan identified in (a), was a press release issued to announce it and, if so, what is the (i) date, (ii) headline, (iii) file number of the press release?
Hon. Peter Van Loan (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, due to the large volume of information involved, the government’s long-standing practice with regard to questions relating to total grants and contributions is to provide an answer for one federal electoral district per question. The government invites the member to specify for which individual riding he would like the requested information and ask the corresponding question.
Question No. 639--
Hon. John McKay:
     With regard to government funding, for each fiscal year since 2007-2008 inclusive: (a) what are the details of all grants, contributions, and loans to any organization, body, or group in the province of British Columbia, providing for each (i) the name of the recipient, (ii) the location of the recipient, indicating the municipality and the federal electoral district, (iii) the date, (iv) the amount, (v) the department or agency providing it, (vi) the program under which the grant, contribution, or loan was made, (vii) the nature or purpose; and (b) for each grant, contribution and loan identified in (a), was a press release issued to announce it and, if so, what is the (i) date, (ii) headline, (iii) file number of the press release?
Hon. Peter Van Loan (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, due to the large volume of information involved, the government’s long-standing practice with regard to questions relating to total grants and contributions is to provide an answer for one federal electoral district per question. The government invites the member to specify for which individual riding he would like the requested information and ask the corresponding question.
Question No. 641--
Mr. Marc Garneau:
     With regard to government funding, for each fiscal year since 2007-2008 inclusive: (a) what are the details of all grants, contributions, and loans to any organization, body, or group in the province of Quebec, providing for each (i) the name of the recipient, (ii) the location of the recipient, indicating the municipality and the federal electoral district, (iii) the date, (iv) the amount, (v) the department or agency providing it, (vi) the program under which the grant, contribution, or loan was made, (vii) the nature or purpose; and (b) for each grant, contribution and loan identified in (a), was a press release issued to announce it and, if so, what is the (i) date, (ii) headline, (iii) file number of the press release?
Hon. Peter Van Loan (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, CPC):
    Mr. Speaker, due to the large volume of information involved, the government’s long-standing practice with regard to questions relating to total grants and contributions is to provide an answer for one federal electoral district per question. The government invites the member to specify for which individual riding he would like the requested information and ask the corresponding question.

  (1530)  

[English]

The Speaker:  
    Is that agreed?
    Some hon. members: Agreed.

Questions Passed as Orders for Returns

Mr. Tom Lukiwski (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, if a revised response to Question No. 233 originally tabled on March 24, 2014 and a revised response to Question No. 328, originally tabled on May 6, 2014, as well as Questions Nos. 263, 493 to 495, 497, 500 to 502, 505, 507 to 513, 515, 516, 518, 520 to 528, 530 to 543, 545 to 547, 550 to 558, 560 to 567, 569, 570, 573, 575 to 587, 589 to 606, 610 to 614, 618 to 622, 624 to 626, 628, 630, 636, 638, 640 and 642 to 644 could be made orders for return, these returns would be tabled immediately.
The Speaker:  
    Is that agreed?
    Some hon. members: Agreed.

[Text]

Question No. 233--
Ms. Charmaine Borg:
     With regard to requests by government agencies to telecommunications service providers (TSP) to provide information about customers’ usage of communications devices and services: (a) in 2012 and 2013, how many such requests were made; (b) of the total referred to in (a), how many requests were made by (i) RCMP, (ii) Canadian Security Intelligence Service, (iii) Competition Bureau, (iv) Canada Revenue Agency, (v) Canada Border Services Agency, (vi) Communications Security Establishment Canada; (c) for the requests referred to in (a), how many of each of the following types of information were requested, (i) geolocation of device (broken down by real-time and historical data), (ii) call detail records (as obtained by number recorders or by disclosure of stored data), (iii) text message content, (iv) voicemail, (v) cell tower logs, (vi) real-time interception of communications (i.e. wire-tapping), (vii) subscriber information, (viii) transmission data (e.g. duration of interaction, port numbers, communications routing data, etc.), (ix) data requests (e.g. web sites visited, IP address logs), (x) any other kinds of data requests pertaining to the operation of TSPs’ networks and businesses, broken down by type; (d) for each of the request types referred to in (c), what are all of the data fields that are disclosed as part of responding to a request; (e) of the total referred to in (a), how many of the requests were made (i) for real-time disclosures, (ii) retroactively, for stored data, (iii) in exigent circumstances, (iv) in non-exigent circumstances, (v) subject to a court order; (f) of the total referred to in (a), (i) how many of the requests did TSPs fulfill, (ii) how many requests did they deny and for what reasons; (g) do the government agencies that request information from TSPs notify affected TSP subscribers that information pertaining to their telecommunications service has been accessed by the government, (i) if so, how many subscribers are notified per year, (ii) by which government agencies; (h) for each type of request referred to in (c), broken down by agency, (i) how long is the information obtained by such requests retained by government agencies, (ii) what is the average time period for which government agencies request such information (e.g. 35 days of records), (iii) what is the average amount of time that TSPs are provided to fulfil such requests, (iv) what is the average number of subscribers who have their information disclosed to government agencies; (i) what are the legal standards that agencies use to issue the requests for information referred to in (c); (j) how many times were the requests referred to in (c) based specifically on grounds of (i) terrorism, (ii) national security, (iii) foreign intelligence, (iv) child exploitation; (k) what is the maximum number of subscribers that TSPs are required by government agencies to monitor for each of the information types identified in (c); (l) has the government ever ordered (e.g. through ministerial authorization or a court order) the increase of one of the maximum numbers referred to in (k); (m) do TSPs ever refuse to comply with requests for information identified in (c) and, if so, (i) why were such requests refused, (ii) how do government agencies respond when a TSP refuses to comply; and (n) in 2012 and 2013, did government agencies provide money or other forms of compensation to TSPs in exchange for the information referred to in (a) and, if so, (i) how much money have government agencies paid, (ii) are there different levels of compensation for exigent or non-exigent requests?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 263--
Mr. Mike Wallace:
     With regard to questions on the Order Paper numbers Q-1 through Q-253, what is the estimated cost of the government's response for each question?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 328--
Hon. John McKay:
     With regard to any contracting paid for by the budgets of each Minister's Office since May 1, 2011, what are the details of all contracts over $500 including (i) the name of the supplier, vendor or individual who received the contract, (ii) the date on which the contract was entered into, (iii) the date the contract terminated, (iv) a brief description of the good or service provided, (v) the amount of payment initially agreed upon for the contract, (vi) the final amount paid for the contract?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 493--
Ms. Francine Raynault:
     With regard to spending in the Joliette riding, what was the total amount spent, from fiscal year 2005-2006 up to and including the current fiscal year, broken down by (i) the date the funds were received in the riding, (ii) the dollar amount, (ii) the program through which the funding was allocated, (iv) the department responsible, (v) the designated recipient?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 494--
Ms. Francine Raynault:
     With regard to the operation of the Skills Link Program: (a) what is the approval process for an application; (b) how many parties propose recommendations to an application before ministerial approval; (c) how does the Minister’s office assess an application; (d) how is the budget for the program split up across the country; (e) how much money was spent in each of the areas specified in (d) for the 2013-2014 program; (f) how much money was allocated and spent in each constituency for the 2013-2014 program; and (g) is money left over from the 2013-2014 program?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 495--
Ms. Francine Raynault:
    With regard to the funding of First Nations educational infrastructure: (a) what are the prioritization criteria for deciding in what order on-reserve schools are to be renovated or modified; (b) what are the first one hundred schools on the prioritization list; (c) where does École Simon P. Ottawa in Manawan rank on the list; (d) what was the estimated useful life and capacity of École Simon P. Ottawa in Manawan at the time it was built; (e) when will École Simon P. Ottawa be replaced; and (f) what is the assessment in terms of the capacity of École Simon P. Ottawa in Manawan, given the population boom in this community?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 497--
Hon. Irwin Cotler:
     With regard to the management and publication of material related to judicial appointments: (a) what is the policy of the Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs Canada with respect to posting information pertaining to candidates; (b) in what way is the nomination material archived; (c) is the material on the website the same as in the binder provided to MPs and, if not, how do they differ; (d) when materials are removed from the website, (i) who keeps copies, (ii), who is provided a copy, (iii) how can this material be accessed, (iv) by whom can it be accessed, (v) how long is it kept; (e) are the materials from the website provided to the Supreme Court of Canada, (i) by whom, (ii) to whom, (iii) on what date, (iv) with what conditions relating to their retention, (v) if not, why not; (f) are the materials from the website provided to the Library of Parliament, (i) by whom, (ii) to whom, (iii) on what date, (iv) with what understating relative to their retention, (v) if not, why not; (g) are the materials from the website provided to the Department of Justice, (i) by whom, (ii) to whom, (iii) on what date, (iv) with what conditions relating to their retention, (v) if not, why not; (h) are the materials from the website provided to the Minister of Justice, (i) by whom, (ii) to whom, (iii) on what date, (iv) with what conditions relating to their retention, (v) if not, why not; (i) are the materials from the website provided to the Prime Minister’s Office, (i) by whom, (ii) to whom, (iii) on what date, (iv) with what understating relative to their retention, (v) if not, why not; (j) are the materials from the website provided to Library and Archives Canada and, if so, (i) by whom, (ii) to whom, (iii) on what date, (iv) with what conditions relating to their retention, (v) if not, why not; (k) how many binders were prepared relative to Mr. Justice Marc Nadon’s appointment and where are these binders now; (l) how many binders were prepared relative to Mr. Justice Wagner’s appointment and where are these binders now; (m) in what way and through what processes can previous binders be consulted by (i) parliamentarians, (ii) the public, (iii) the media, (iv) legal scholars; (n) for how long does the Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs Canada retain all information relative to judicial appointment cycles and what are its policies on both retention of these materials and access to them; (o) with respect to the inclusion of publications, seminars and lectures in Mr. Justice’s Wagner’s materials, why is no such material included in Mr. Justice Nadon’s materials and whose decision was this; (p) with respect to the statement made in the government’s response to written question Q-239, that “ (bb)(i) The material requested in the latest appointment process does not differ materially from those requested for the appointment of Justice Wagner” and “(iv) The wording was substantially the same”, what is the difference between “materially” and “substantially” insofar as case law areas are concerned; (q) do the uses of “materially” and “substantially” mean that the wording was not exactly the same; (r) were Justices Wagner and Justice Nadon asked for the same exact materials and same areas of cases law and, if not, why not; (s) do the types of materials sought from candidates change between appointment cycles, (i) if so, why, (ii) who makes this determination; (t) do the types of material sought from candidates for Quebec seats change between appointment cycles, (i) if so, why, (ii) how is this determined; (u) with what bodies did the Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs Canada consult in developing a retention and access policy relative to materials associated with a judicial appointment; (v) why is candidate information on the website for the Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs Canada only temporarily online and how was this policy developed; (w) were any briefing documents, presentations, or memos prepared for ministers or their staff, from 2006 to present, regarding Supreme Court Appointments and, for each, what is the (i) date, (ii) title or subject-matters, (iii) department, commission, or agency’s internal tracking number; (x) do members of the Selection Panel have access to the materials developed or used in an appointment process after the appointment has been made; (y) does the Minister of Justice or Prime Minister have access to the materials developed or used in an appointment process after the appointment has been made; (z) does an appointed justice have any access to the materials developed or used in the process after the appointment has been made; (aa) does any person consulted in the process of an appointment have any access to materials or records developed or used in the process at any time; (bb) what materials were developed or used in the most recent appointment process; (cc) what records of meetings or other items exist relative to the most recent appointment process, (i) by what means can they be accessed, (ii) by whom; and (dd) does the Minister of Justice or Prime Minister have any access to materials not accessible to other persons and, if so, what materials, and by virtue of what process or policy?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 500--
Ms. Elizabeth May:
     With regard to the contract announced on February 14, 2014, between the Canadian Commercial Corporation and the government of Saudi Arabia for the supply of armoured vehicles built in London, Ontario, by General Dynamics Land Systems Canada, and the export permits issued by Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada (DFATD) in accordance with the contract: (a) how many export permits has DFATD issued related to the announced contract, and for each permit issued, what was the (i) value, (ii) date, (iii) valid duration; (b) of the $4.02 billion worth in export permits issued to Saudi Arabia in 2011 for exports of Group 2 (military) goods, how many Group 2 permits were related to the announced contract; (c) were the export permits related to the announced contract issued to the Canadian Commercial Corporation, to General Dynamics Land Systems Canada, or to both; and (d) has the Canadian Commercial Corporation charged, or will it charge, fees for its services regarding the announced contract, (i) have these fees been charged or will they be charged to the Saudi Arabia government, to General Dynamics Land Systems Canada or to both, (ii) if so, is the fee a standard amount or is it determined by the size of the contract?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 501--
Mr. Malcolm Allen:
     With regard to salmon farming in Canada: (a) how many outbreaks of infectious salmon anemia have been reported in 2011, 2012, 2013, and thus far in 2014, broken down by province; (b) how many outbreaks of infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus have been reported in 2011, 2012, 2013, and thus far in 2014, broken down by province; (c) how much money has the government paid out in compensation to producers who were ordered to destroy salmon infected with infectious salmon anemia in 2011, 2012, 2013, and thus far in 2014, broken down by province; (d) how much money has the government paid out in compensation to producers who were ordered to destroy salmon infected with infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus in 2011, 2012, 2013, and thus far in 2014, broken down by province; (e) how much money has the government paid out in compensation to producers who were ordered to destroy salmon infected with other diseases in 2011, 2012, 2013, and thus far in 2014, broken down by province; (f) how much money has the government paid out in compensation to companies headquartered outside of Canada which were ordered to destroy salmon infected with diseases in 2011, 2012, 2013, and thus far in 2014; (g) what plans does the Canadian Food Inspection Agency currently have in place if there are more outbreaks of diseases resulting in compensation to salmon producers; (h) what biosecurity measures are salmon producers required to take in order to be eligible for compensation for the destruction of diseased salmon; (i) what cost-benefit analysis has the government undertaken concerning federal compensation to salmon producers; and (j) has the government examined the cost differential in federal compensation to salmon producers using open-pen systems compared to salmon producers using closed containment systems, and, if so, what were the results of this analysis?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 502--
Mr. Malcolm Allen:
     With regard to pesticide residues in tea: (a) what method is used by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) to test pesticide residues in dry tea leaves; (b) for which pesticides does the CFIA test tea products, and do these tests include all pesticides approved in Canada; (c) how often does the CFIA test tea products for pesticide residues; (d) how many tea products were tested for pesticide residues in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, and thus far in 2014; (e) how many tea products were found to contain levels of pesticides exceeding the allowable limits in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, and thus far in 2014, and what action was taken by the government in relation to those products; (f) what policies do the CFIA and Health Canada have in place for tea products containing the residues of multiple pesticides; (g) what analysis has the government undertaken of the potential risks to consumers posed by pesticide residues found in tea leaves, and what were the results of this analysis; and (h) how often does Health Canada assess the safety of pesticide residues in food products approved for sale in Canada?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 505--
Ms. Joyce Murray:
     With regard to the staffing of Canadian Armed Forces clinics: (a) at each base/location, what is the number employed of (i) military psychiatrists, (ii) civilian psychiatrists employed directly by the Department of National Defence (DND), (iii) psychiatrists from Calian Technologies Ltd., (iv) military psychologists, (v) civilian psychologists employed directly by the DND, (vi) Calian psychologists, (vii) military medical doctors, (viii) civilian medical doctors employed directly by the DND, (ix) Calian medical doctors, (x) military medical social workers, (xi) civilian medical social workers employed directly by the DND, (xii) Calian medical social workers, (xiii) military registered nurses specializing in mental health, (xiv) civilian registered nurses specializing in mental health employed directly by the DND, (xv) Calian registered nurses specializing in mental health, (xvi) military addictions counsellors, (xvii) civilian addictions counsellors employed directly by the DND, (xviii) Calian addictions counsellors; (b) what is the average full-time equivalent salary for (i) military psychiatrists, (ii) civilian psychiatrists employed directly by the DND, (iii) Calian psychiatrists, (iv) military psychologists, (v) civilian psychologists employed directly by the DND, (vi) Calian psychologists, (vii) military medical doctors, (viii) civilian medical doctors employed directly by the DND, (ix) Calian medical doctors, (x) military medical social workers, (xi) civilian medical social workers employed directly by the DND, (xii) Calian medical social workers, (xiii) military registered nurses specializing in mental health, (xiv) civilian registered nurses specializing in mental health employed directly by the DND, (xv) Calian registered nurses specializing in mental health, (xvi) military addictions counsellors, (xvii) civilian addictions counsellors employed directly by the DND, (xviii) Calian addictions counsellors; and (c) what is the average number of patients treated per month by (i) military psychiatrists, (ii) civilian psychiatrists employed directly by the DND, (iii) Calian psychiatrists, (iv) military psychologists, (v) civilian psychologists employed directly by the DND, (vi) Calian psychologists, (vii) military medical doctors, (viii) civilian medical doctors employed directly by the DND, (ix) Calian medical doctors, (x) military medical social workers, (xi) civilian medical social workers employed directly by the DND, (xii) Calian medical social workers, (xiii) military registered nurses specializing in mental health, (xiv) civilian registered nurses specializing in mental health employed directly by the DND, (xv) Calian registered nurses specializing in mental health, (xvi) military addictions counsellors, (xvii) civilian addictions counsellors employed directly by the DND, (xviii) Calian addictions counsellors?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 507--
Mr. François Choquette:
    With regard to the current Parks Canada study of the Maligne Tours hotel construction proposal at Maligne Lake, near Jasper: (a) what are the study’s terms of reference; (b) what is Parks Canada’s role in deciding the outcome of this project; (c) when is the study due to be completed; (d) what are the criteria for (i) approval, (ii) rejection of private development projects; (e) will the study take into account the ecological integrity of Parks Canada; (f) will the study include public consultations and, if so, with (i) what groups, (ii) where, (iii) when; (g) will the study of the project be made public and, if applicable, how will the results be made public; (h) who will have access to the study’s final report: (i) the public, (ii) government departments, (iii) ministers; (i) will the study consider the (i) direct, (ii) indirect, (iii) cumulative impacts of a development project of this size in determining the scope of the issue; (j) will the study take into account species at risk; (k) will the study take into account the standards for construction in rocky areas; (l) will the study consider the impacts of such a project on the future of the caribou, which is now an endangered species; and (m) will the study consider the impacts on (i) the economy, (ii) municipalities, (iii) communities, (iv) Aboriginal peoples, (v) human health, (vi) animal health, (vii) aquatic plants, (viii) aquatic animals, (ix) land plants, (x) land animals?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 508--
Mr. Paul Dewar:
    With regard to the procurement of temporary personnel services by the government over the last five years: (a) what is the total government expenditure for such services (i) in total, (ii) broken down by year; (b) for each year in this period, what amount was spent by each department; (c) how much was spent in each department or agency in the National Capital Region (NCR) alone, broken down by year; (d) what is the breakdown by province for such services; (e) which companies received contracts to provide temporary personnel services; (f) what is the annual combined value of all contracts awarded to each company; (g) how many people were hired by temporary employment agencies to work for the government, both nationally and in the NCR (i) in total, (ii) broken down by year; and (h) how many employees were hired on a temporary basis, both nationally and in the NCR, broken down by (i) year, (ii) department or agency?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 509--
Mr. Brian Masse:
     With regard to petroleum coke (which may also be referred to as green coke, uncalcined coke, thermocracked coke, and fuel grade coke): (a) what is the government doing to assess and monitor the potential impact on the environment of its storage, transportation and use in Canada, including their impact on (i) water, air and land quality, (ii) acute and chronic human health issues, (iii) aquatic and terrestrial life; and (b) what is the government doing to mitigate the potential impacts referred to in (a)?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 510--
Mr. Brian Masse:
     With regard to Environment Canada and Fisheries and Oceans Canada staff working on issues related to the Great Lakes Basin (Lake Superior, Lake Huron, Lake Michigan, Lake Erie, Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River) from 1972 to 2014 inclusive: (a) what is the total number of such staff for each year, broken down by type of staffing (e.g. “scientific”, “technical”, etc.); and (b) what is the aggregate salary of all such staff, broken down by (i) actual expenditure, (ii) expenditures adjusted for inflation?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 511--
Hon. Irwin Cotler:
     With regard to disclosures by telecom and Internet providers (“providers”) of subscriber information: (a) what government agencies and departments request such data; (b) how many such requests have been made in the past five years, broken down by year and requestor; (c) from what providers has the government made requests in the last year; (d) from what providers has the government made requests in the past five years; (e) what is the breakdown of requests by agency and provider in (d); (f) how many individuals have had their subscriber data given to the government in the past five years, broken down by year; (g) what limits exist on what data or information the government can request from providers; (h) what limits exist on what data or information providers can supply; (i) in what ways are persons notified that their data has been requested; (j) in what ways are persons notified that their data has been provided; (k) are there any restrictions on how often the government is allowed to request data from providers generally and, if so, what are they; (l) are there any restrictions on how often the government is allowed to request data from providers relative to a specific user and, if so, what are these; (m) what are the restrictions, if any, to the amount or type of data providers may access in responding to a government request; (n) what sort of information may providers furnish about subscribers without a court order; (o) what does subscriber information entail; (p) what does the government seek when it requests subscriber information; (q) are there any restrictions on when a provider may inform its customers that a government agency has requested data; (r) have any of the government policies that pertain to requests for an access to subscriber data changed in the past five years and, if so, how; (s) how much money did the government spend on data requests, broken down by year, expense type, and the agency incurring the expense, for the past five years; (t) how much money did the government spend on storing and retaining data, broken down by year, expense type, and the agency incurring the expense, for the past five years; (u) how much money did the government spend assessing received data, broken down by year, expense type, and the agency incurring the expense, for the past five years; (v) how much money did the government spend to act upon received data, broken down by year, expense type, and the agency incurring the expense, for the past five years; (w) how often did the disclosure of data lead to action by the government; (x) for calendar year 2013, how many persons were charged with offences under an Act of Parliament where the government had requested subscriber data; (y) for what purposes does the government request subscriber data; (z) what evidence of their concern, if any, must government agencies have for requests for data on grounds of (i) child exploitation, (ii) terrorism, (iii) national security, (iv) foreign intelligence; (aa) what are the definitions and criteria established by the government relative to the enumerated categories in (z); (bb) how often are requests made relative to the enumerated categories in (z); (cc) what grounds other than those enumerated categories in (z) has the government identified as warranting subscriber data requests; (dd) what avenues exist for Canadians to contest governmental demands for access to data sent over communication devices; (ee) what avenues exist for providers to refuse a government request in this regard; (ff) broken down by requesting entity, what is the process by which a data request is made; (gg) in instances where Communications Security Establishment Canada (CSEC) has “incidentally” captured Canadians’ personal information, are there any protocols on what is done with that information; (hh) with respect to (gg), are there any restrictions on how long CSEC or another agency may keep the ‘incidentally’ captured data or on what they may do with it and, if so, what are these; (ii) of the data received by the government, how often and in what ways has it proved useful in ensuring the safety of Canadian citizens; (jj) of Canadians whose data was requested, how much data was provided with respect to (i) usage, (ii) geolocation of device (broken down between real-time and historical), (iii) call detail records (as obtained by number recorders or by disclosure of stored data), (iv) text message content, (v) voicemail, (vi) cell tower logs, (vii) real-time interception of communications, (viii) transmission data, (ix) other data requests; (kk) with respect to the categories in (jj), does the government request all such data in every case; (ll) how does the government determine what data to seek in each case, by what process and criteria, and with what reviews; (mm) with respect to the categories in (jj), does the government not request data with respect to any of them and if not, why not; (nn) with respect to the information types in (jj), which government agencies made such requests in the past five years, and what records are made of the requests; (oo) what records are stored with respect to data requests; (pp) how is the data received stored and for how long; (qq) who or what has access to obtained data; (rr) what is the average amount of time for which government requests data from law enforcement with respect to a specific individual; (ss) how quickly are providers required to respond regarding their ability to provide each type of data provided; (tt) how quickly must providers respond to government requests; (uu) in the past three years did the government provide money or any other form of compensation, including tax breaks, in exchange for information being provided to government agencies, and, if so, what were these; (vv) in what ways has the government consulted with the Privacy Commissioner to ensure that data requests comply with privacy law; (ww) with what experts has the government consulted regarding requests for subscriber data; (xx) what protocols are in place to ensure that privacy rights are respected in this process; and (yy) how often has the government met with providers to discuss data requests, and when was the most recent such meeting?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 512--
Mr. Sean Casey:
     With regard to research at the Department of Justice: (a) broken down by year for each of the last ten years, what studies were undertaken by the Department, and at what cost; (b) of the studies in (a), which ones are currently publicly accessible; (c) of the studies in (a) which, if any, have not been made public; (d) how much funding has been allocated to research and studies for each of the last ten years; (e) how much funding was spent on research and studies for each of the past ten years; (f) what policies or directives account for changes in funding allocated or spent at the Department; (g) who determines or determined the policies or directives in (g); (h) with regard to recent research cuts that the Minister has said were carried out “to ensure that we bring value to hard-earned taxpayers’ dollars”, how is value defined at the Department in the context of research and study; (i) what reports or studies has the Minister determined to be wasteful and according to what criteria; (j) what reports or studies has the Department determined to be wasteful and according to what criteria; (k) what reports or studies has the Minister determined do not “bring value to hard-earned taxpayers dollars” and how so; (l) what reports or studies has the Department determined do not “bring value to hard-earned taxpayers dollars” and according to what criteria; (m) with respect to the statement of the Minister that “research is undertaken to obtain information to support priorities of government,” how are the priorities of government identified and what are they; (n) what studies have been undertaken in the past five years to support the priorities of government; (o) have any studies been undertaken that do not support the priorities of government and, if so, what are these; (p) what studies or research proposals have not been proceeded with at Justice because they do not support the priorities of government; (q) who determines that a study or proposal does not support the priorities of government, and according to what criteria; (r) at what stage(s) is a study or proposal for research evaluated to determine that it does not support the priorities of government, and who conducts the evaluation; (s) what does the term ‘support’ mean in the Minister’s comment; (t) what is done with research that is undertaken to support the government’s priorities but yielded results counter to the government’s priorities; (u) have any such studies as in (t) occurred within the last 10 years; (v) in the past five years, has the government not proceeded with any research or study because it believed the results would be unfavourable; (w) in the past five years, has the government not re-released a study because its results were unfavourable or otherwise counter to advancing the government’s priorities; (x) how are research and study proposals evaluated by the Department; (y) what departmental officials recommended the recently announced $1.2 million cut to research within the Department, and with what rationale; (z) who had final approval within the Department to cut $1.2 million from the research budget; (aa) how many research studies or projects were already underway that were terminated as a result of the decision to cut the Department's research budget; (bb) what were the subject matters of research that was affected as a result of the cuts within the Department; (cc) how much money had already been spent on active research studies subsequently cancelled due to cuts; (dd) what process or policy is in place to decide what research is to be undertaken now, and how has that policy changed, if in any way, over the past four years; (ee) is research that is conducted and published within the Department subject to redaction or editing from individuals other than the researchers, prior to its publication; (ff) after research is presented for possible publication, what other branches within the Department are involved with any redaction or editing of that research before publication; (gg) what role does the Privy Council Office have, if any, in approving, editing or redacting any research publications generated within the Department of Justice; (hh) what role does the Prime Minister’s Office have, if any, in approving, editing or redacting any research publications generated within the Department of Justice; (ii) how many times has research been sent to the Minister's office before its publication within the Department or dissemination otherwise; (jj) what is the value for each research contract awarded in the past 5 years at the Department, broken down by year; (kk) what studies are presently underway at the Department, broken down by division; (ll) how many reports and studies does the Department produce annually and what are their titles; (mm) in the past five years, how much of the research and how many of the studies and reports produced are presented to the Minister, and what percentage of the total is this; (nn) in the past five years, how much of the research and how many of the studies and reports are tabled in Parliament, and what percentage of the total is this; (oo) for each of the past ten years, how many FTE research employees have there been at the Department; (pp) what factors were considered in determining the budget for research at the Department; (qq) what qualifications are required of researchers at the Department; (rr) on what evidence will the Department and Minister make decisions in the absence of research; (ss) what will the consequences of research cuts be on the quality and quantity of information the Department or Minister has; (tt) does the Department track in any way how often its research is accessed and, if so, how; (uu) does the Department track the number of page visits to research materials on its website; (vv) what trends and statistics exist regarding the accessing of studies and research on the Department’s website; (ww) are reports or studies posted online viewed by the Minister’s office prior to their publication and, if so, by what process and with what role for the Minister or his office; (xx) have any reports or studies conducted in the last five years been presented to the Minister that are not online and if so, what are their titles; (yy) what briefing notes, decks, memos, or other materials relating to research have been prepared at the Department in the last five years and what are their file numbers; (zz) within the past five years, what briefing notes, decks, memos, or other materials relating to research funding specifically were created at the Department and what are their file numbers; (aaa) what mechanisms, policies, and processes exist to ensure that research is in no way politicized; (bbb) in what ways does the Department benefit from research, study, and analysis; (ccc) what priorities for research have been identified over the past 10 years and what changes in these priorities have occurred over time; (ddd) how many specific research proposals or studies has the Minister not proceeded with in the past five years, what were the proposed topics of study, and why were these not proceeded with; and how many specific research proposals or studies has the Department not proceeded with in the past five years, what were the proposed topics of study, and why were these not proceeded with; and (eee) what factors influence research funding at the Department?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 513--
Ms. Elizabeth May:
     With regard to Bill C-22, and the government's obligation to enact laws that respect the Charter of Rights and Freedoms as well as Supreme Court jurisprudence related to the “polluter pays” principle: (a) in developing the Nuclear Liability and Compensation Act included in Part 2 of Bill C-22, on what (i) studies, (ii) case law, (iii) doctrinal sources did the government rely; (b) in developing the changes to Canada’s offshore oil and gas operations regime in Part 1 of Bill C-22, on what (i) studies, (ii) case law, (iii) doctrinal sources did the government rely; (c) what statistics or empirical evidence as to the likelihood and consequences of reactor accidents causing offsite damage did the government rely on to justify (i) the need for the Nuclear Liability and Compensation Act, (ii) the limitation of reactor operator liability to $1 billion, (iii) the total shielding of reactor suppliers and vendors from liability even if their negligence causes damage; (d) what statistics or empirical evidence as to the likelihood and consequences of accidents in the oil and gas sectors did the government rely on to justify (i) the need for the provisions included in Part 1 of Bill C-22 related to the liability of offshore oil and gas companies, (ii) the maintenance of unlimited liability where fault or negligence is proven, (iii) the raising of the absolute liability limit for Atlantic offshore areas and the Arctic to $1 billion where fault or negligence is not proven; (e) what analysis has the government performed to determine whether the Nuclear Liability and Compensation Act will increase or reduce the risk of nuclear facilities to Canadian society and the environment, and what are the conclusions of this analysis; (f) did the government review the causes and contributors of major reactor accidents, such as Three Mile Island, Chernobyl and Fukushima, in assessing the need and impact of the Nuclear Liability and Compensation Act, and if so, what are the conclusions of this analysis; (g) has Bill C-22 been examined by the Department of Justice to ascertain consistency with the Charter, and if so, (i) who was responsible for performing the examination, (ii) when was the examination initiated, (iii) when was the examination completed, (iv) what were the conclusions of the examination; (v) when was the Minister of Justice presented with the conclusions of the examination; (vi) was a report of inconsistency prepared; (vii) was a report of inconsistency presented to Parliament; (viii) has there been an assessment of the litigation risk relative to the enactment of this legislation and, if so, what are the conclusions of this assessment; (h) has the Nuclear Liability and Compensation Act included in Bill C-22 been examined by the Department of Justice to ascertain consistency with the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, including the right of every Canadian to “liberty and security of the person” pursuant to section 7, and if so, (i) did the Department of Justice examine whether the Nuclear Liability and Compensation Act’s limitation of reactor operator liability to $1 billion was consistent with the right of every Canadian to “liberty and security of the person”, and what were the conclusions, (ii) did the Department of Justice examine whether the channeling of liability to reactor operators and removal of any liability for damages of reactor suppliers or vendors, even if the negligence causes or contributes to an accident causing offsite damage, was consistent with the right of every Canadian to “liberty and security of the person”, and what were the conclusions; (i) has the Department of Justice evaluated whether the inclusion of an absolute cap on nuclear reactor operator liability in C-22, regardless of negligence or other tortious conduct, while allowing for claims in tort against oil and gas operators beyond the absolute liability requirement in C-22, meets the provisions of section 15 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and if so, (i) what were the conclusions; and (j) has the Nuclear Liability and Compensation Act included in Bill C-22 been examined by the government to ascertain compliance with the Supreme Court ruling Imperial Oil Ltd. v. Quebec (Minister of the Environment) and if so, what were the conclusions?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 515--
Mr. Scott Simms:
     With regard to correspondence with federally registered political parties, what are the file numbers of all ministerial briefings or departmental correspondence between the government and any registered political party since January 23, 2006, broken down by (i) minister or department, (ii) relevant file number, (iii) correspondence or file type, (iv) date, (v) purpose, (vi) origin, (vii) intended destination, (viii) other officials copied or involved?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 516--
Hon. Ralph Goodale:
     With regard to the Major Infrastructure Component and the Communities Component of the Building Canada Fund announced in 2007: (a) are applications still being accepted; (b) how much of the funding has been allocated; (c) how much of the funding has been spent; (d) for completed projects, how much less was spent than was allocated; (e) how much of the amount referred to in (d), (i) has been reallocated to new projects, (ii) has not been reallocated to new projects; and (f) how much of each component’s funding is forecast to lapse?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 518--
Mr. Glenn Thibeault:
     With regard to the promotion of Canada's travel and tourism sector: broken down by fiscal year since 2005-2006 up to and including the current fiscal year, (a) what is the total amount spent by the government on advertising; (b) what is the total amount spent in foreign markets, broken down by individual market; (c) what is the total amount spent on print advertising, broken down by individual market; (d) what is the total amount spent on television advertising, broken down by individual market; (e) what is the total amount spent on radio advertising, broken down by individual market; (f) what is the total spending by the government for online or web advertising; and (g) what is the total amount spent on advertising through (i) Facebook, (ii) Twitter, (iii) Google?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 520--
Mr. Sean Casey:
    With respect to Ministers' Regional Offices (MRO) located in each province: broken down by year since 2006, (a) how many full time staff are assigned and based at each MRO; (b) how many part time or casual staff are assigned and based at each MRO; (c) how many contract staff are assigned to work at each MRO; (d) what are the titles and salaries with respect to answers provided in (a), (b) and (c); (e) what is the overall budget to operate each MRO; and (f) what is the list of all staff or titles used in each MRO?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 521--
Mr. Ted Hsu:
     With regard to Statistics Canada, broken down by survey: for each of the current surveys for which some or all of the data has been collected from April to June 2014, (a) how many participants were selected; (b) how many participants agreed to be surveyed; (c) how many participants declined to be surveyed; (d) how many participants were contacted by letter (i) once, (ii) twice, (iii) three times, (iv) more than three times; (e) what is the average number of times that participants are contacted by letter; (f) how many participants were contacted by telephone (i) once, (ii) twice, (iii) three times, (iv) more than three times; (g) what is the average number of times that participants are contacted by telephone; (h) how many participants who declined to be surveyed were contacted by letter (i) once, (ii) twice, (iii) three times, (iv) more than three times; (i) what is the average number of times that participants who declined to be surveyed were contacted by letter; (j) how many participants who declined to be surveyed were contacted by telephone (i) once, (ii) twice, (iii) three times, (iv) more than three times; (k) what is the average number of times that participants who declined to be surveyed were contacted by telephone; (l) how many participants declined to be surveyed following (i) the first letter, (ii) the second letter, (iii) the third letter, (iv) a subsequent letter, (v) the first contact by telephone, (vi) the second contact by telephone, (vii) the third contact by telephone, (viii) a subsequent contact by telephone; (m) what other forms of communication does Statistics Canada use to contact potential participants, other than letter and telephone calls; (n) what is the policy for dealing with selected participants who have declined to be surveyed at the various stages of contact; (o) what arguments are made at each stage of contact to convince participants to agree to be surveyed; (p) what are the data retention and privacy policies regarding information from (i) participants, (ii) participants who declined to be surveyed; and (q) when was approval granted for the data retention policy regarding information from participants who (i) agreed to be surveyed, (ii) declined to be surveyed?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 522--
Mr. Charlie Angus:
     With respect to the Prime Minister's use of the government owned fleet of aircraft since January 2006 and for each use of the aircraft: (a) what are the passenger manifests for all flights; (b) what are the names and titles of the passengers present on the flight manifest; (c) what were all the departure and arrival points of the aircraft; (d) who requested access to the fleet; (e) who authorized the flight; (f) what repayments or reimbursements were made by passengers as a result of these flights; (g) what is the total cost of these flights; and (h) what is the total cost by year?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 523--
Mr. Sean Casey:
     With regard to government litigation and statutory validity: (a) for each year since 2006, which federal laws had their constitutional validity challenged; (b) what were the names of each of the cases in (a); (c) what was the outcome of each of these cases at each instance, broken down by court or tribunal and province; (d) what was the remedy utilized by the court in each case; (e) in which cases does a right of appeal remain; (f) in how many of the cases where no appeal remains did the government lose its defence of the law; (g) of the cases in (f), which specific provisions of which laws were struck down, by which courts and by which cases; (h) broken down by case referred to in (f), how much did the government spend and what is the breakdown of these costs; (i) in any cases, did the government concede an infringement of a right in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms; (j) of the cases referred to in (i), in which cases did the government assert that the infringement was saved by section 1 of the Charter and in which, if any, did the government concede that an infringement was not saved by section 1; (k) did the government concede, in any case, that a federal law was contrary to the purposes and provisions of the Canadian Bill of Rights; (l) did the government concede, in any case, that a federal law was contrary to the purposes and provisions of the Constitution Act, 1982, other than the Charter; (m) of the cases in (k) and (l), what are their names and citations, sorted by year; (n) in what cases did a court find that a federal law was contrary to the purposes and provisions of the Constitution Act, 1982, other than the Charter; (o) in what cases did a court find that a federal law was contrary to the purposes and provisions of the Canadian Bill of Rights; (p) what are the citations for the cases in (n) and (o); (q) for any case in which a section or provision of federal law was struck down for violating the Charter, the Constitution Act, 1982, or the Canadian Bill of Rights, how has the government responded; (r) in which reference cases was the government’s position not agreed with by the Supreme Court; (s) what is the cost breakdown for the cases in (r); (t) of provisions and sections of laws struck by courts for lack of constitutionality, which have been repealed; (u) what is the government’s approach, plan, and policy with respect to the repeal of legislative provisions found unconstitutional; (v) regarding Reference re: Supreme Court Act, ss. 5 and 6, will the government repeal Section 6.1 of the Supreme Court Act (clause 472 of Economic Action Plan 2013 Act, No. 2); (w) what is the reason for the decision in (v) and what discussions, consultations, and meetings occurred on this point; (x) by what process would an ultra vires or unconstitutional provision be repealed, such as Section 6.1 of the Supreme Court Act (clause 472 of Economic Action Plan 2013 Act, No. 2); (y) what purpose is served by leaving inoperative provisions in statute; (z) what mechanisms exist in the government to identify inoperative legislative provisions; (aa) what mechanisms exist in the government to remove inoperative legislative provisions; (bb) when was the last time inoperative legislative provisions were removed; (cc) in all cases where a provision was struck from legislation, was a report of its constitutionality prepared pursuant to the Department of Justice Act; (dd) where a provision was struck from legislation, was a report of the statute’s constitutionality prepared pursuant to the Department of Justice Act and tabled in the House; (ee) what factors explain why a provision was struck despite a report of its constitutionality being prepared; (ff) what factors explain why a provision was struck yet no report of its possible inconsistency tabled; (gg) what explains the presentation of laws later found unconstitutional despite the reporting requirement in the Department of Justice Act; (hh) in what cases since 2006 has a court, contrary to the contention of the government, read down a law; (ii) in what cases since 2006 has a court, contrary to the contentions of the government, resorted to “reading in”; (jj) what are the citations for the cases in (hh) and (ii) and how much was spent on their defence; (kk) what purposes and policy goals are served by leaving provisions of no force or effect in statute; and (ll) for any of the cases identified in any question herein, did the government ever consider invoking the notwithstanding clause?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 524--
Ms. Lise St-Denis:
     With regard to contracts under $10,000 granted by Employment and Social Development Canada since January 1, 2013: what are the (a) vendors' names; (b) contracts' reference numbers; (c) dates of the contracts; (d) descriptions of the services provided; (e) delivery dates; (f) original contracts' values; and (g) final contracts' values if different from the original contracts' values?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 525--
Ms. Lise St-Denis:
     With regard to contracts under $10,000 granted by Citizenship and Immigration Canada since January 1, 2013: what are the (a) vendors' names; (b) contracts' reference numbers; (c) dates of the contracts; (d) descriptions of the services provided; (e) delivery dates; (f) original contracts' values; and (g) final contracts' values if different from the original contracts' values?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 526--
Ms. Lise St-Denis:
    With regard to contracts under $10,000 granted by Industry Canada since January 1, 2013: what are the (a) vendors' names; (b) contracts' reference numbers; (c) dates of the contracts; (d) descriptions of the services provided; (e) delivery dates; (f) original contracts' values; and (g) final contracts' values if different from the original contracts' values?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 527--
Ms. Lise St-Denis:
    With regard to contracts under $10,000 granted by Parks Canada since January 1, 2013: what are the (a) vendors' names; (b) contracts' reference numbers; (c) dates of the contracts; (d) descriptions of the services provided; (e) delivery dates; (f) original contracts' values; and (g) final contracts' values if different from the original contracts' values?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 528--
Hon. Lawrence MacAulay:
     With regard to contracts under $10,000 granted by Natural Resources Canada since January 1, 2013: what are the (a) vendors' names; (b) contracts' reference numbers; (c) dates of the contracts; (d) descriptions of the services provided; (e) delivery dates; (f) original contracts' values; and (g) final contracts' values if different from the original contracts' values?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 530--
Hon. Lawrence MacAulay:
    With regard to contracts under $10,000 granted by the Public Prosecution Service of Canada since January 1, 2013: what are the (a) vendors' names; (b) contracts' reference numbers; (c) dates of the contracts; (d) descriptions of the services provided; (e) delivery dates; (f) original contracts' values; and (g) final contracts' values if different from the original contracts' values?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 531--
Hon. Stéphane Dion:
     With regard to government bills, what is the specific rationale for each coming-into-force provision in Bill C-23, An Act to amend the Canada Elections Act and other Acts and to make consequential amendments to certain Acts, which was introduced at first reading on February 4, 2014?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 532--
Hon. Mark Eyking:
     With regard to government expenditures on media monitoring: what are the details of all spending, by each department and agency, including (i) the nature, (ii) the scope, (iii) the duration, (iv) the contract for media monitoring, (v) the names of the contracted services provided, (vi) the file numbers of all such contracts which have been in force on or since December 12, 2012?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 533--
Hon. Mark Eyking:
     With regard to government communications since March 24, 2014: (a) for each press release containing the phrase “Harper government” issued by any department, agency, office, Crown corporation, or other government body, what is the (i) headline or subject line, (ii) date, (iii) file or code-number, (iv) subject-matter; (b) for each such press release, was it distributed (i) on the web site of the issuing department, agency, office, Crown corporation, or other government body, (ii) on Marketwire, (iii) on Canada Newswire, (iv) on any other commercial wire or distribution service, specifying which service; and (c) for each press release distributed by a commercial wire or distribution service mentioned in (b)(ii) through (iv), what was the cost of using the service?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 534--
Mr. Kennedy Stewart:
    With regard to government spending in the constituency of Burnaby—Douglas: what was the total amount of government funding since fiscal year 2011-2012 up to and including the current fiscal year, broken down by (i) the date the money was received in the riding, (ii) the dollar amount of the expenditure, (iii) the program from which the funding came, (iv) the ministry responsible, (v) the designated recipient?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 535--
Ms. Annick Papillon:
     With regard to government funding: what is the total amount of government funding allocated in the constituency of Québec from fiscal year 2012-2013 up to and including the current fiscal year, broken down by (i) department or agency, (ii) initiative or project, for each department or agency?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 536--
Ms. Annick Papillon:
     With regard to government employees: what is the number of employees in the constituency of Québec from fiscal year 2006-2007 up to and including the current fiscal year, broken down by (i) year, (ii) department or agency?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 537--
Mr. Charlie Angus:
     With regard to the Kashechewan First Nation from 2005 to the present, broken down by year: (a) what were the costs of the overall infrastructure investments, broken down by investment; (b) what were the costs of infrastructure repairs, broken down by repair; (c) how much money was spent on emergency flooding, broken down by item; (d) how much money was spent on repairing and maintaining the dyke, by year; (e) what is the current status of the dyke; and (f) what monies were spent on evacuations and emergency services in each year?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 538--
Ms. Kirsty Duncan:
    With respect to the government’s support to West Africa’s counter-terrorism strategy and efforts to find the Nigerian schoolgirls held by Boko Haram: (a) what support has the government provided to the Economic Community of West African States’ counter-terrorism strategy, broken down by project, including (i) start and end dates, (ii) partner organization, (iii) project rationale; (b) what support has the government provided to build Nigeria’s anti-terrorism capacities, broken down by project, including (i) start and end dates, (ii) partner organization, (iii) project rationale; (c) what specific resources has Canada sent to Nigeria to help search for the Nigerian schoolgirls, and for each resource, what is (i) the monetary value of the contribution, (ii) the date the resource was “on the ground” in Nigeria, (iii) the date until which the resource will stay; (d) in order to be invited to the Paris summit to boost the search for the Nigerian schoolgirls, were invitees required to contribute a certain value, and if so, what was the requirement; (e) did Canada receive an invitation to attend the Paris summit; and (f) did Canada attend the Paris summit, (i) if so, in what capacity, (ii) if not, why not?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 539--
Mr. Bruce Hyer:
     With regard to export permits issued by Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada (FATDC): (a) what was the total value of export permits for Group 2 goods issued for export in each of the years 2012 and 2013, broken down by recipient country; (b) what is the value of export permits authorized for Export Control List Group 2 items, broken down by Group 2 subgroup item (2-1 to 2-22) for each recipient country in each of the years 2012 and 2013; (c) what is the value of export permits for Export Control List Group 2 items denied in each of the years 2012 and 2013, broken down by recipient country; and (d) will FATDC publish information on export permits annually to coincide with future “Reports on the Export of Military Goods from Canada”, including total values of denials and authorizations, broken down by Group 2 subgroup item for each recipient country?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 540--
Mr. Scott Reid:
    With regard to the operations of the RCMP in and around the Town of High River, Alberta, between June 20, 2013, and July 12, 2013: (a) what special procedures and measures were implemented, and pursuant to what statutory and policy authorities and declarations were those special procedures and measures implemented; (b) what were the circumstances that informed the decision to engage in a door-to-door search of residences and non-residential buildings, what procedures or special measures were implemented to engage in this search, and pursuant to what statutory or policy authorities were those procedures or special measures implemented; (c) what were the circumstances that informed the decision to engage in entries through the use of force during the course of the door-to-door search of residences and non-residential buildings, what procedures or special measures were implemented to engage in the use of force, and pursuant to what statutory or policy authorities were those procedures or special measures implemented; (d) what organization or organizations were consulted by or provided advice to the RCMP respecting the need for and the conduct of the searches referred to in (b) and (c), (i) what information was sought, if any, by the RCMP from each organization, (ii) what information was provided, if any, to the RCMP by each organization; (e) what criteria were used to determine which residences and non-residential buildings to enter during the conduct of the searches referred to in (b) and (c); (f) what was the total number of residences that were entered by the RCMP during the searches referred to in (b) and what was the total number of residences that were entered by the RCMP during the searches referred to in (c); (g) what was the total number of non-residential buildings that were entered by the RCMP during the searches referred to in (b) and what was the total number of non-residential buildings that were entered by the RCMP during the searches referred to in (c); (h) were any residences or non-residential buildings referred to in (b) and (c) entered multiple times or on multiple dates and, if so, how many residences were entered multiple times or on multiple dates, and for what purposes were the initial entries and subsequent entries made, (i) what measures were taken by the RCMP, regarding each residence entered through the use of force by the RCMP, to ensure that residences were secured against further entry after the RCMP finished searching each residence; (j) did the RCMP allow anyone who was not an RCMP police officer to enter residences during the searches referred to in (b) and (c), (i) if (j) is answered in the affirmative, on a residence-by-residence basis, whom (by name, position and organization) did the RCMP allow into residences and for what purpose, (ii) if (j) is answered in the affirmative, have the home owners been made aware that non-RCMP personnel were allowed into their homes by the RCMP; (k) what information did the RCMP possess prior to the searches referred to in (b) and (c), regarding the presence, in residences and non-residential buildings in and around the Town of High River, of firearms, firearms ammunition, non-firearm weapons, and weapon accessories; (l) in how many cases were legally-stored firearms rendered illegally-stored, as a result of forced entries into residences by the RCMP; (m) during the course of the searches referred to in (b) and (c), what statutory authorization allowed the removal of, (i) legally-stored firearms from residences, (ii) illegally-stored firearms from residences, (iii) legally-stored ammunition from residences, (iv) illegally-stored ammunition from residences, (v) legally-stored weapons other than firearms from residences, (vi) illegally-stored weapons other than firearms from residences, (vii) legally-stored weapon accessories from residences, (viii) illegally-stored weapon accessories from residences; (n) how many of the items mentioned in (m)(i) through (viii), were removed by the RCMP; (o) did the RCMP remove any legally-owned items, other than firearms, ammunition, non-firearms weapons, or weapon accessories from any residences or non-residential buildings during the course of the searches referred to in (b) and (c) and, if so, how many items were removed, what were they, and what statutory and policy authorities allowed the RCMP to do so; (p) did the RCMP remove any illegal items, objects or substances, other than firearms, ammunition, non-firearms weapons, or weapons accessories, from any residences or non-residential buildings during the course of the searches referred to in (b) and (c) and, if so, what items were removed; (q) was a warrant or warrants for the search of residences and non-residential buildings or removal of any personal property, including but not limited to firearms, firearms ammunition, non-firearm weapons, and weapon accessories, ever requested, (i) if (q) is answered affirmatively, are copies of the requests available, (ii) if (q) is answered in the negative, why was no request for a warrant or warrants referred to in (q) made; (r) was a warrant or warrants for the search of residences and non-residential buildings or removal of any personal property, including but not limited to firearms, firearms ammunition, non-firearm weapons and weapon accessories, ever issued, (i) if (r) is answered affirmatively, are copies of the warrant or warrants available, (ii) if (r) is answered in the negative, why was the warrant or warrants not issued; (s) what was the total number of RCMP police officers who took part in the searches referred to in (b) and (c) and were the RCMP police officers conducting the searches referred to in (b) the same as the RCMP conducting the searches in (c) and, if not, what was the reason for the difference; (t) what are the names, ranks, positions, units, and detachments of the officer or officers who authorized or otherwise initiated the (i) searches referred to in (b) and (c), (ii) removal of legally-stored firearms from residences, (iii) removal of illegally-stored firearms from residences, (iv) removal of legally-stored ammunition from residences, (v) removal of illegally-stored ammunition from residences, (vi) removal of legally-stored non-firearms weapons from residences, (vii) removal of illegally-stored non-firearms weapons from residences, (viii) removal of legally-stored weapon accessories from residences, (ix) removal of illegally-stored weapon accessories from residences; (u) did the RCMP gather any information over the course of the searches referred to in (b) and (c) and if so, (i) what information was gathered regarding any firearms, (ii) what information was gathered regarding any ammunition, (iii) what information was gathered regarding any weapon accessories, (iv) what information was gathered regarding any weapons, other than firearms, (v) has any form of database or information record (electronic or physical) been developed which could identify any of the residents, or residences, in and around the Town of High River, based on the presence of firearms, weapons, ammunition or accessories located during the conduct of the searches referred to in (b) and (c), (vi) is any of the information referred to in (u)(i) through (iv) still in existence and, if so, what information is still accessible by the RCMP, or any other government organization, (vii) under what statutory and policy authority did the RCMP have the legal right to gather any information referenced in (u)(i) through (iv), (viii) under what statutory and policy authority does the RCMP have the legal right to keep any information referenced in (u)(i) through (iv), (v) have any charges been laid based on any of the RCMP's findings from the searches referred to in (b) and (c) and, so, what are the charges that have been laid and how many of each type of charge have been laid; (w) have any members of the RCMP been charged or internally-disciplined, and to what degree, regarding, (i) the forced entry into residences or non-residential buildings in and around the Town of High River, (ii) the removal of any items from residences or non-residential buildings in and around the Town of High River; (x) what were the reasons (broken down by case) for (i) all entries (forced or otherwise) into each residence and non-residential building, between the dates of June 24 and July 12, 2013, (ii) all the searches of each residence and non-residential building between the dates of June 24 and July 12, 2013, (iii) the removal of any firearms, ammunition, non-firearms weapons and accessories from each residences and non-residential building, between the dates of June 24 and July 12, 2013; (y) what are the contents of all communications, hard copy or electronic ,including but not limited to, mail, email, fax, text, letter, that have been exchanged between any members of the RCMP, as well as between the RCMP and any government officials, including but not limited to municipal governments, the Alberta provincial government and associated agencies and Crown corporations, the federal government and associated government agencies and Crown corporations, regarding the requirement of the searches referred to in (b) and (c), the conduct of the searches referred to in (b) and (c) and the removal of any items during the course of the searches referred to in (b) and (c); and (z) what is the source of the information provided in the responses to (a) through (y)?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 541--
Mr. Scott Reid:
     With regard to the actions of the RCMP in Alberta, between June 20, 2013 and July 12, 2013: (a) respecting the actions implemented in and around the Town of High River, Alberta, what statutory, regulatory and policy authorities (citing specific clauses) guided the RCMP's emergency response procedures; (b) were the RCMP's emergency response procedures, referred to in section (a), the same as the emergency response procedures used by the RCMP in other municipalities in Alberta, (i) was the RCMP’s removal of firearms, firearms ammunition, non-firearm weapons, and related accessories, during the searches of residences and non-residential buildings in and around the Town of High River a course of action which was used in other communities in Alberta and, if so, where else was this course of action used, and to what extent, (ii) was the RCMP’s decision to temporarily deny the residents of the Town of High River the ability to re-enter the town taken in other municipalities and, if so, what were the dates when the RCMP allowed residents to re-enter, and the circumstances which allowed re-entry, for each affected municipality, (iii) if (b) is answered in the negative, what were all of the differences in standard response procedures used by the RCMP in each municipality and the reasons for the differences; (c) during the RCMP's emergency response procedures implemented in and around the Town of High River, did the RCMP locate any people and, if so, (i) how many of the people located by the RCMP required assistance and how many were given assistance by the RCMP, (ii) how many people were located by the RCMP, or assisted by the RCMP, as a direct result of the RCMP's searching of residential or non-residential buildings, in and around the Town of High River, (iii) how many people were located by the RCMP, or assisted by the RCMP, as a result of the RCMP's forced entry into residential or non-residential buildings in and around the Town of High River, (iv) what forms of assistance were provided to anyone who was found through the RCMP's searching of residential or non-residential buildings in and around the Town of High River; (d) on what specific dates did the RCMP locate any people or domesticated animals, in and around the Town of High River, (i) through the searching of residences, (ii) through the searching of non-residential buildings, (iii) through the forced entry into residences, (iv) through the forced entry into non-residential buildings; (e) on June 20, 2013, what was the RCMP's standard procedure when responding to a natural disaster, and the declaration of a state of emergency, (i) regarding searching residences and non-residential buildings for people or domesticated animals, (ii) regarding forced entry into residences and non-residential-buildings, while searching for people and domesticated animals, (iii) regarding the removal of valuable items discovered when searching residences and non-residential buildings for people or domesticated animals, (iv) regarding legally-stored firearms, ammunition, non-firearm weapons, or weapons accessories, which are located by the RCMP in residences and non-residential buildings, while searching, through forced entry or otherwise, for people or domesticated animals, (v) regarding illegally-stored firearms, ammunition, non-firearm weapons, or weapons accessories, which are located by the RCMP in residences and non-residential buildings, while searching, through forced entry or otherwise, for people or domesticated animals, (vi) regarding securing a residence or non-residential building, after being subject to forced entry by the RCMP, (vii) when was the procedure created and last amended; (f) did the RCMP have thermal imaging technology available for their use in and around the Town of High River, (i) if (f) is answered in the affirmative, how was the technology employed in and around the Town of High River, (ii) was the technology capable of identifying the presence of people or domesticated animals in residences or non-residential buildings without physically entering the buildings, and if not, why not and how was this determination reached; (g) what are the contents of all communications, hard copy or electronic including, but not limited to, mail, email, fax, text, letter, that have been exchanged between any members of the RCMP, as well as between the RCMP and any government officials including, but not limited to, municipal governments, the Alberta provincial government and associated government agencies and Crown corporations, the federal government and associated government agencies and Crown corporations, regarding the end of the state of emergency in all affected areas and the denial of re-entry of citizens in all affected areas; (h) what are the contents of the minutes of all the meetings attended by the RCMP with respect to the operations in and around the Town of High River; (i) on what date and time were any states of emergency or declarations pertaining to the Town of High River lifted; (j) on what date and time and by what means were the residents of the Town of High River notified of their ability to re-enter the town; and (k) what are the sources of the answers provided in (a) through (j)?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 542--
Ms. Kirsty Duncan:
     With respect to maternal newborn and child health (MNCH) and Canada’s strategy “Saving Every Woman, Every Child: Within Arm’s Reach”: (a) will the additional $650 million for 2015-2020 over 2010-2015 spending be drawn from the existing Official Development Assistance (ODA) envelope or is it in addition to the existing ODA envelope; (b) how does the government plan to expand its current health and nutrition programming to address the needs of adolescent girls as per the Toronto Statement; (c) will the government develop a well-rounded, gender-equitable, and effective MNCH strategy that includes family planning and the full range of reproductive health services, (i) if not, why not; (d) how will the government involve women in developing countries in the design and implementation of women’s health strategies; (e) will the government invest in the broader agenda of women’s and children’s rights in its development work; (f) why did the government not adopt the global consensus to add reproductive health to maternal, newborn and child health; (g) what monies will be devoted to (i) reducing the burden of leading diseases, (ii) improving nutrition, (iii) strengthening health systems and accountability, (iv) strengthening vital and civil statistics; (h) in what select developing countries will Canada focus its Forward Strategy for Saving Every Woman Every Child, and specifically (i) how does the government define high-impact health services, (ii) what specific high-impact interventions are included in Canada’s Forward Strategy, (iii) what pre-pregnancy health services and interventions will the government focus on; (i) how does the government measure effectiveness of health systems projects, and when will the government report on effectiveness; (j) how will the government prioritize those countries and issues where concrete results can be attained for the world’s most vulnerable women and children, (i) how will the Forward Strategy adhere to the Commission on Information and Accountability, (ii) what concrete outcome results will the Forward Strategy achieve, (iii) how does the government define the world’s most vulnerable women and children; (k) what is the government currently investing in vaccines; (l) what are “the most effective life-saving vaccines and medicines” that Canada supports; (m) how will Canada build on its recent commitments to (i) the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, (ii) the Global Polio Eradication Initiative; (n) how will the government determine who are “the partners most proven to achieve results for women and children”; (o) define and specify the government’s food security partnerships; (p) define and specify the government’s MNCH partnerships; (q) as of the announced day of the Forward Strategy, what role and activities will the government undertake with respect to the Scaling Up Nutrition movement; (r) how will the government determine who are like-minded partners, (i) how will it determine which countries and partners are able to deliver the package of integrated nutrition interventions that represents the best return on development investment, (ii) what has been the process to determine the package of integrated nutrition interventions, (iii) what are the integrated nutrition interventions the government will support, (iv) what are the expected nutrition outcomes and return on investment expected of the Forward Strategy; (s) what monies will be devoted to support country partners’ efforts tostrengthen their civil registration and vital statistics systems, and how are these monies expected to improve (i) national documentation to help secure and safeguard an individual’s rights, (ii) the delivery of health services, (iii) participatory approaches that include community-based monitoring systems; (t) when will consultations take place with (i) Canadian experts, (ii) international experts, (iii) partner countries to inform new investments; (u) how will rights-based organizations be included in the consultations; (v) what additional support will be provided to the Canadian Network for Maternal Newborn and Child Health, and for what time period; and (w) how will Canada push to ensure that MNCH features prominently in the post-2015 development agenda, (i) which health, hunger and nutrition goals and indicators will the government support, (ii) in which global forums will the government promote MNCH in the post-2015 development agenda?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 543--
Hon. Irwin Cotler:
     With respect to the appointment of Justice Clément Gascon to the Supreme Court of Canada: (a) by what process was Justice Gascon identified and selected for appointment; (b) what was the role of the Department of Justice; (c) what was the role of the Minister of Justice; (d) what was the role of the Prime Minister; (e) what was the role of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs; (f) were any other ministers involved and if so what were their roles; (g) with whom did the government consult and when did these consultations occur; (h) what was the role of Parliament; (i) why was no ad hoc committee convened to meet Justice Gascon prior to his appointment; (j) what specific considerations were taken with respect to (i); (k) who made the ultimate decision with respect to (i); (l) has the government abolished the ad hoc committee process for reviewing Supreme Court nominees; (m) if the ad hoc committee meeting for new Supreme Court nominees has not been abolished, why did it not occur with Justice Gascon prior to his appointment; (n) will Justice Gascon appear before Parliament at any point relative to his appointment to the Supreme Court of Canada; (o) what specific criteria were established by which candidates were evaluated in the process by which Justice Gascon was selected; (p) how did Justice Gascon meet the criteria in (o); (q) why was Justice Gascon selected; (r) was preserving gender parity on the Supreme Court of Canada a goal of the process that resulted in the appointment of Justice Gascon; (s) what consideration was preserving gender parity on the Supreme Court of Canada in the process that resulted in the appointment of Justice Gascon; (t) in what ways does Justice Gascon’s appointment preserve gender parity on the Supreme Court of Canada; (u) in what ways does Justice Gascon’s appointment enhance diversity on the Supreme Court of Canada; (v) what particular areas of expertise were identified in the process that resulted in Gascon’s appointment; (w) how were the areas in (v) developed; (x) what is known of Justice Gascon’s expertise in the areas identified in (v); (y) what Justices of the Supreme Court of Canada were consulted with respect to Justice Gascon’s appointment; (z) did consultation with the Chief Justice occur regarding Justice Gascon; (aa) is consultation with Chief Justice a normal practice in the course of selecting a nominee for the Supreme Court of Canada; (bb) what role is served by consulting with the Chief Justice or, if no such consultation occurred in this instance, what policy reasons justify excluding the Chief Justice from consultations; (cc) would there have been time for Parliamentarians to meet Justice Gascon prior to his appointment to the Supreme Court; (dd) with which parliamentarians did Justice Gascon meet prior to his appointment; (ee) what committees reviewed Justice Gascon’s candidacy prior to his appointment; (ff) was Justice Gascon identified in the process that resulted in the nomination of Justice Nadon; (gg) at what stages of the process was Justice Gascon’s eligibility for appointment assessed and by whom; (hh) does the answer in (gg) reflect any new process or procedure; (ii) with respect to Justice Minister Peter Mackay’s statement as reported by CTV on May 28 that “Our list and their list are being examined in concert to find a common name,” was the name of Justice Gascon common to both lists; (jj) how was the “our” list to which Minister MacKay referred developed; (kk) how many names were on “our” list; (ll) what went into selecting the names on “our” list and who was involved in this process; (mm) was the “our” list to which Minister MacKay referred developed through the process announced by previous Justice Minister Rob Nicholson on June 11, 2013 and if not, why not; (nn) with respect to the “their list” of which the Minister spoke, who developed this list and when was it provided to the government; (oo) did the government solicit in any way “their list”; (pp) how was “their list” assessed, by whom, and on what dates; (qq) how many names were on “their list”; (rr) what individuals were involved in the process that “examined in concert to find a common name” the lists referred to by the Minister; (ss) how long did the process in (mm) require and when did it terminate; (tt) were any outside legal opinions sought with respect to Justice Gascon’s appointment, why or why not; (uu) what was the cost of Justice Gascon’s appointment and what is the breakdown of these costs; (vv) if any of the answers to these questions are subject to solicitor-client privilege, who is the solicitor and the client for the particular question; (ww) who from the Government of Quebec was consulted on Gascon’s appointment, on what dates, and by whom; (xx) when were the Chief Justice of Quebec and the Chief Justice of the Quebec Superior Court consulted on Gascon’s appointment and by whom; (yy) who from the Canadian Bar Association, the Barreau du Québec, and the Barreau de Montréal were consulted on Gascon’s appointment and by whom; (zz) what academics were consulted, by whom and on what dates; (aaa) what victims’ rights groups were consulted, by whom, and on what dates; (bbb) what aboriginal groups were consulted, by whom, and on what dates; (ccc) what women’s groups were consulted, by who, and on what dates; (ddd) whereas in the past candidates have been first nominated and then appointed, was Justice Gascon ever nominated prior to his appointment by the government, and if so, when did this occur, if not why not; (eee) what changes to the process have been identified or completed through this appointment; (fff) what factors were considered relative to the timing of this appointment; (ggg) who decided the timing of the appointment announcement and in consultation with whom; (hhh) what benefits were derived from appointing Justice Gascon prior to a Parliamentary ad hoc hearing; (iii) what benefits were derived from appointing Justice Gascon prior to the end of the scheduled Parliamentary sitting; (jjj) why was the appointment announced while Parliament was still sitting but without an ad hoc hearing; and (kkk) why was the appointment announced so far in advance of the Court’s fall session; and (lll) is it anticipated the same appointment process will be used for the next vacancy on the Supreme Court of Canada?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 545--
Ms. Judy Foote:
    With regard to post offices: (a) which post offices are subject to the 1994 moratorium on post office closures, broken down by (i) province, (ii) municipality, (iii) federal riding, (iv) address; (b) which post offices are not subject to the 1994 moratorium on post office closures, broken down by (i) province, (ii) municipality, (iii) federal riding, (iv) address; (c) since 2006, how many times has Canada Post changed its original proposed plan to reduce hours, move, close, or amalgamate a post office following a consultation period, broken down by (i) province, (ii) municipality, (iii) federal riding, (iv) address, (v) original proposed plan, (vi) changed plan following consultation; and (d) since 2006, how many times has Canada Post followed through with its original proposed plan to reduce hours, move, close, or amalgamate a post office following a consultation period, broken down by (i) province, (ii) municipality, (iii) federal riding, (iv) address?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 546--
Ms. Judy Foote:
     With regard to contracts under $10,000 granted by Veterans Affairs Canada since January 1, 2013: what are the (a) vendors' names; (b) contracts' reference numbers; (c) dates of the contracts; (d) descriptions of the services provided; (e) delivery dates; (f) original contracts' values; and (g) final contracts' values if different from the original contracts' values?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 547--
Ms. Judy Foote:
    With regard to government expenditures associated with the National Day of Honour on May 9, 2014: (a) what is the total cost; (b) what is the cost and nature of each individual associated expenditure; (c) what is the breakdown of these expenditures, by (i) government department, agency, office, Crown corporation, other government body, program activity and sub-program activity, (ii) category; (d) what was the total cost to transport veterans and their families to Ottawa for the ceremony; (e) what is the cost and nature of each individual expenditure associated with the transporting of veterans and their families to Ottawa for the ceremony; (f) what is the breakdown of the expenditures in (e), by (i) government department, agency, office, Crown corporation, or other government body, (ii) program activity, (iii) category; (g) what are any expenditures associated with the National Day of Honour that have not been itemized in (a) to (f); and (h) for all related contracts, what were the (i) vendors’ names, (ii) contracts’ reference numbers, (iii) dates of the contracts, (iv) descriptions of the services provided, (v) delivery dates, (vi) original contracts’ values, (vii) final contracts’ values if different from the original contracts’ values?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 550--
Hon. Dominic LeBlanc:
     With regard to the disposition of government assets since January 1, 2006: (a) on how many occasions has the government repurchased or reacquired a lot which had been disposed of in accordance with the Treasury Board Directive on the Disposal of Surplus Materiel; and (b) for each such occasion, what was (i) the description or nature of the item or items which constituted the lot, (ii) the sale account number or other reference number, (iii) the date on which the sale closed, (iv) the price at which the item was disposed of to the buyer, (v) the price at which the item was repurchased from the buyer, if applicable?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 551--
Hon. Dominic LeBlanc:
     With regard to contracts under $10,000 granted by Public Works and Government Services Canada since January 1, 2013: what are the (a) vendors' names; (b) contracts' reference numbers; (c) dates of the contracts; (d) descriptions of the services provided; (e) delivery dates; (f) original contracts' values; and (g) final contracts' values if different from the original contracts' values?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 552--
Hon. Dominic LeBlanc:
     With regard to the backdrops used by the government for announcements since June 19, 2012: for each backdrop purchased, what was (a) the date (i) the tender was issued for the backdrop, (ii) the contract was signed, (iii) the backdrop was delivered; (b) the cost of the backdrop; (c) the announcement for which the backdrop was used; (d) the department that paid for the backdrop; and (e) the date or dates the backdrop was used?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 553--
Hon. Wayne Easter:
    With respect to national parks and historic sites, for each of the following locations, namely, Abbot Pass Refuge Cabin National Historic Site, Alberta; Athabasca Pass National Historic Site, Alberta; Banff National Park, Alberta; Banff Park Museum National Historic Site, Alberta; Bar U Ranch National Historic Site, Alberta; Cave and Basin National Historic Site, Alberta; Elk Island National Park, Alberta; First Oil Well in Western Canada National Historic Site, Alberta; Frog Lake National Historic Site, Alberta; Howse Pass National Historic Site, Alberta; Jasper National Park, Alberta; Jasper House National Historic Site, Alberta; Jasper Park Information Centre National Historic Site, Alberta; Rocky Mountain House National Historic Site, Alberta; Skoki Ski Lodge National Historic Site, Alberta; Sulphur Mountain Cosmic Ray Station National Historic Site, Alberta; Waterton Lakes National Park, Alberta; Wood Buffalo National Park, Alberta; Yellowhead Pass National Historic Site, Alberta; Chilkoot Trail National Historic Site, British Columbia; Fisgard Lighthouse National Historic Site, British Columbia; Fort Langley National Historic Site, British Columbia; Fort Rodd Hill National Historic Site, British Columbia; Fort St. James National Historic Site, British Columbia; Gitwangak Battle Hill National Historic Site, British Columbia; Glacier National Park, British Columbia; Gulf Islands National Park Reserve, British Columbia; Gulf of Georgia Cannery National Historic Site, British Columbia; Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve and Haida Heritage Site, British Columbia; Gwaii Haanas National Marine Conservation Area Reserve, British Columbia; Kicking Horse Pass National Historic Site, British Columbia; Kootenae House National Historic Site, British Columbia; Kootenay National Park, British Columbia; Mount Revelstoke National Park, British Columbia; Nan Sdins National Historic Site, British Columbia; Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, British Columbia; Rogers Pass National Historic Site, British Columbia; Stanley Park National Historic Site, British Columbia; Twin Falls Tea House National Historic Site, British Columbia; Yoho National Park, British Columbia; Forts Rouge, Garry and Gibraltar National Historic Site, Manitoba; Linear Mounds National Historic Site, Manitoba; Lower Fort Garry National Historic Site, Manitoba; Prince of Wales Fort National Historic Site, Manitoba; Riding Mountain National Park, Manitoba; Riding Mountain Park East Gate Registration Complex National Historic Site, Manitoba; Riel House National Historic Site, Manitoba; St. Andrew's Rectory National Historic Site, Manitoba; The Forks National Historic Site, Manitoba; Wapusk National Park, Manitoba; York Factory National Historic Site, Manitoba; Beaubears Island Shipbuilding National Historic Site, New Brunswick; Boishébert National Historic Site, New Brunswick; Carleton Martello Tower National Historic Site, New Brunswick; Fort Beauséjour – Fort Cumberland National Historic Site, New Brunswick; Fort Gaspareaux National Historic Site, New Brunswick; Fundy National Park, New Brunswick; Kouchibouguac National Park, New Brunswick; La Coupe Dry Dock National Historic Site, New Brunswick; Monument-Lefebvre National Historic Site, New Brunswick; Saint Croix Island International Historic Site, New Brunswick; St. Andrews Blockhouse National Historic Site, New Brunswick; Cape Spear Lighthouse National Historic Site, Newfoundland and Labrador; Castle Hill National Historic Site, Newfoundland and Labrador; Gros Morne National Park, Newfoundland and Labrador; Hawthorne Cottage National Historic Site, Newfoundland and Labrador; Hopedale Mission National Historic Site, Newfoundland and Labrador; L'Anse aux Meadows National Historic Site, Newfoundland and Labrador; Port au Choix National Historic Site, Newfoundland and Labrador; Red Bay National Historic Site, Newfoundland and Labrador; Ryan Premises National Historic Site, Newfoundland and Labrador; Signal Hill National Historic Site, Newfoundland and Labrador; Terra Nova National Park, Newfoundland and Labrador; Torngat Mountains National Park, Newfoundland and Labrador; Aulavik National Park, Northwest Territories; Nahanni National Park Reserve, Northwest Territories; Sahoyué-§ehdacho National Historic Site, Northwest Territories; Tuktut Nogait National Park, Northwest Territories; Wood Buffalo National Park, Northwest Territories; Alexander Graham Bell National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Beaubassin National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Bloody Creek National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Canso Islands National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Cape Breton Highlands National Park, Nova Scotia; Charles Fort National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; D'Anville's Encampment National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Fort Anne National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Fort Edward National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Fort Lawrence National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Fort McNab National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Fort Sainte Marie de Grace National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Georges Island National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Grand-Pré National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Grassy Island Fort National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Halifax Citadel National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Kejimkujik National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Kejimkujik National Park, Nova Scotia; Marconi National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Melanson Settlement National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Port-Royal National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Prince of Wales Tower National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Royal Battery National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; St. Peters National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; St. Peters Canal National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; The Bank Fishery - The Age of Sail Exhibit, Nova Scotia; Wolfe's Landing National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; York Redoubt National Historic Site, Nova Scotia; Auyuittuq National Park, Nunavut; Quttinirpaaq National Park, Nunavut; Sirmilik National Park, Nunavut; Ukkusiksalik National Park, Nunavut; Battle Hill National Historic Site, Ontario; Battle of Cook's Mills National Historic Site, Ontario; Battle of the Windmill National Historic Site, Ontario; Battlefield of Fort George National Historic Site, Ontario; Bellevue House National Historic Site, Ontario; Bethune Memorial House National Historic Site, Ontario; Bois Blanc Island Lighthouse and Blockhouse National Historic Site, Ontario; Bruce Peninsula National Park, Ontario; Butler's Barracks National Historic Site, Ontario; Carrying Place of the Bay of Quinte National Historic Site, Ontario; Fathom Five National Marine Park of Canada, Ontario; Fort George National Historic Site, Ontario; Fort Henry National Historic Site, Ontario; Fort Malden National Historic Site, Ontario; Fort Mississauga National Historic Site, Ontario; Fort St. Joseph National Historic Site, Ontario; Fort Wellington National Historic Site, Ontario; Georgian Bay Islands National Park, Ontario; Glengarry Cairn National Historic Site, Ontario; HMCS Haida National Historic Site, Ontario; Inverarden House National Historic Site, Ontario; Kingston Fortifications National Historic Site, Ontario; Lake Superior National Marine Conservation Area of Canada, Ontario; Laurier House National Historic Site, Ontario; Merrickville Blockhouse National Historic Site, Ontario; Mississauga Point Lighthouse National Historic Site, Ontario; Mnjikaning Fish Weirs National Historic Site, Ontario; Murney Tower National Historic Site, Ontario; Navy Island National Historic Site, Ontario; Peterborough Lift Lock National Historic Site, Ontario; Point Clark Lighthouse National Historic Site, Ontario; Point Pelee National Park, Ontario; Pukaskwa National Park, Ontario; Queenston Heights National Historic Site, Ontario; Rideau Canal National Historic Site, Ontario; Ridgeway Battlefield National Historic Site, Ontario; Saint-Louis Mission National Historic Site, Ontario; Sault Ste. Marie Canal National Historic Site, Ontario; Shoal Tower National Historic Site, Ontario; Sir John Johnson House National Historic Site, Ontario; Southwold Earthworks National Historic Site, Ontario; St. Lawrence Islands National Park, Ontario; Trent–Severn Waterway National Historic Site, Ontario; Waterloo Pioneers Memorial Tower National Historic Site, Ontario; Woodside National Historic Site, Ontario; Ardgowan National Historic Site, Prince Edward Island; Dalvay-by-the-Sea National Historic Site, Prince Edward Island; Green Gables Heritage Place, Prince Edward Island; L.M. Montgomery's Cavendish National Historic Site, Prince Edward Island; Port-la-Joye–Fort Amherst National Historic Site, Prince Edward Island; Prince Edward Island National Park, Prince Edward Island; Province House National Historic Site, Prince Edward Island; 57-63 St. Louis Street National Historic Site, Quebec; Battle of the Châteauguay National Historic Site, Quebec; Battle of the Restigouche National Historic Site, Quebec; Carillon Barracks National Historic Site, Quebec; Carillon Canal National Historic Site, Quebec; Cartier-Brébeuf National Historic Site, Quebec; Chambly Canal National Historic Site, Quebec; Coteau-du-Lac National Historic Site, Quebec; Forges du Saint-Maurice National Historic Site, Quebec; Forillon National Park, Quebec; Fort Chambly National Historic Site, Quebec; Fort Lennox National Historic Site, Quebec; Fort Ste. Thérèse National Historic Site, Quebec; Fort Témiscamingue National Historic Site, Quebec; Fortifications of Québec National Historic Site, Quebec; Grande-Grave, Quebec; Grosse Île and the Irish Memorial National Historic Site, Quebec; La Mauricie National Park, Quebec; Lachine Canal National Historic Site, Quebec; Lévis Forts National Historic Site, Quebec; Louis S. St. Laurent National Historic Site, Quebec; Louis-Joseph Papineau National Historic Site, Quebec; Maillou House National Historic Site, Quebec; Manoir Papineau National Historic Site, Quebec; Mingan Archipelago National Park Reserve, Quebec; Montmorency Park National Historic Site, Quebec; Pointe-au-Père Lighthouse National Historic Site, Quebec; Québec Garrison Club National Historic Site, Quebec; Saguenay-St. Lawrence Marine Park, Quebec; Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue Canal National Historic Site, Quebec; Saint-Louis Forts and Châteaux National Historic Site, Quebec; Saint-Ours Canal National Historic Site, Quebec; Sir George-Étienne Cartier National Historic Site, Quebec; Sir Wilfrid Laurier National Historic Site, Quebec; The Fur Trade at Lachine National Historic Site, Quebec; Batoche National Historic Site, Saskatchewan; Battle of Tourond's Coulee / Fish Creek National Historic Site, Saskatchewan; Cypress Hills Massacre National Historic Site, SKFort Battleford National Historic Site, Saskatchewan; Fort Espérance National Historic Site, Saskatchewan; Fort Livingstone National Historic Site, Saskatchewan; Fort Pelly National Historic Site, Saskatchewan; Fort Walsh National Historic Site, Saskatchewan; Frenchman Butte National Historic Site, Saskatchewan; Grasslands National Park, Saskatchewan; Motherwell Homestead National Historic Site, Saskatchewan; Prince Albert National Park, Saskatchewan; Dawson Historical Complex National Historic Site, Yukon; Dredge No. 4 National Historic Site, Yukon; Former Territorial Court House National Historic Site, Yukon; Ivvavik National Park, Yukon; Kluane National Park and Reserve, Yukon; S.S. Keno National Historic Site, Yukon; S.S. Klondike National Historic Site, Yukon; and Vuntut National Park, Yukon: during each of the 2012 and 2013 operating seasons, what was the total employment, broken down by (i) full-time, (ii) part-time, (iii) seasonal employees?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 554--
Hon. Wayne Easter:
    With regard to materials prepared for deputy heads or their staff from January 23, 2014 to present: for every briefing document prepared, what is (i) the date on the document, (ii) the title or subject matter of the document, (iii) the department’s internal tracking number?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 555--
Mr. Massimo Pacetti:
     With regard to materials prepared for Assistant Deputy Ministers from January 23, 2014 to present: for every briefing document prepared, what is (i) the date on the document, (ii) the title or subject matter of the document, (iii) the department’s internal tracking number?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 556--
Hon. Wayne Easter:
     With regard to government advertising: (a) how much has each department, agency, or Crown corporation spent to purchase advertising on Facebook in each fiscal year since 2006-2007 inclusive; (b) what was the (i) nature, (ii) purpose, (iii) target audience or demographic, (iv) cost of each individual advertising purchase; (c) what was the Media Authorization Number for each advertising purchase; and (d) what are the file numbers of all documents, reports, or memoranda concerning each advertising purchase or of any post-campaign assessment or evaluation?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 557--
Mr. Kevin Lamoureux:
     With regard to contracts under $10,000 granted by Veterans Affairs Canada since January 1, 2013: what are the (a) vendors' names; (b) contracts' reference numbers; (c) dates of the contracts; (d) descriptions of the services provided; (e) delivery dates; (f) original contracts' values; and (g) final contracts' values if different from the original contracts' values?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 558--
Mr. Kevin Lamoureux:
    With regard to contracts under $10,000 granted by the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces since January 1, 2013: what are the (a) vendors' names; (b) contracts' reference numbers; (c) dates of the contracts; (d) descriptions of the services provided; (e) delivery dates; (f) original contracts' values; and (g) final contracts' values if different from the original contracts' values?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 560--
Mr. Kevin Lamoureux:
     With regard to contracts under $10,000 granted by Western Economic Diversification Canada since January 1, 2013: what are the (a) vendors' names; (b) contracts' reference numbers; (c) dates of the contracts; (d) descriptions of the services provided; (e) delivery dates; (f) original contracts' values; and (g) final contracts' values if different from the original contracts' values?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 561--
Hon. Geoff Regan:
     With regard to Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC): (a) how many veterans have been hired at VAC and any other government department in each year since 2006; (b) for each year, how many of these were medically released members of the Canadian Forces hired in priority through the Public Service Commission; (c) what percentage of all hires at VAC since 2006 have been veterans; and (d) what specific efforts are being made by the Department to increase the number and percentage of veterans working within VAC?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 562--
Hon. Geoff Regan:
     With respect to legal action against the government regarding the Veterans Charter: (a) what is the total amount of money spent by all departments and agencies, broken down by department and agency, since January 1, 2010, in its defence against the Canadian veterans' class action lawsuit; and (b) what is the total amount of money all departments and agencies have spent to hire outside legal counsel, broken down by department and agency, for the same time period referred to in (a)?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 563--
Hon. John McCallum:
    With regard to government expenditures on media monitoring: for every contract entered into, or in force, on or since March 21, 2013, what search terms were required to be monitored?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 564--
Hon. John McCallum:
     With regard to materials prepared for ministers or their staff, from January 23, 2014 to present: for every briefing document prepared, what is (i) the date on the document, (ii) the title or subject matter of the document, (iii) the department’s internal tracking number?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 565--
Hon. John McCallum:
    With regard to the government’s immigration commitments in response to the humanitarian crisis in Syria and Typhoon Haiyan, for each event: (a) on what date did applications open for persons affected by the crisis; (b) how many applications has the government received since that date; (c) how many applications (i) have been approved, (ii) have been rejected, (iii) are still awaiting a final answer; and (d) when is the government ending these special measures?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 566--
Hon. Lawrence MacAulay:
     With regard to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ (DFO) Deficit Reduction Action Plan (DRAP) Track 19: Outsourcing Research Capability of Contaminant Research: (a) is the government’s objective to cease all biological effects contaminant research within DFO and if so, what are the reasons for this objective; (b) how many employees have been eliminated due to this objective and what are their positions and locations; (c) what programs or research initiatives are affected by this objective, including a detailed breakdown of how programs or research have been affected; (d) has the government established a small advisory group to oversee the outsourcing of research needs and, if so, what are the details of this advisory group, including (i) the date the advisory group was established, (ii) the number of members, (iii) their names, (vi) their position, (v) their background experience, (vi) their location, (vii) the internal tracking number and detailed information of any advice or recommendations the advisory group has provided to the government to date, (viii) the amount and details of any federal funding provided to the advisory group; and (e) were briefing documents related to or referencing the outsourcing of research capability of contaminant research prepared for all departmental officials at the Associate Deputy Minister level and above, from October 31, 2012 to the present and, for each document, what is the (i) date, (ii) title or subject-matter, (iii) Department's internal tracking number?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 567--
Hon. Geoff Regan:
    With regard to departmental procurement through CORCAN between fiscal year 2005-2006 and fiscal year 2012-2013: (a) what departments have purchased products through CORCAN; (b) what was the value of each department's procurement in each of the fiscal years; and (c) for each purchase, (i) what was the location or facility for which the purchase was made, (ii) was the procurement sole-sourced or put out to tender, (iii) was a quote requested from one or more private sector firms before purchasing the product from CORCAN?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 569--
Mr. Murray Rankin:
    With regard to Old Age Security (OAS) pension and benefit appeals: (a) how many appeals were made to the OAS Review Tribunal between 2004 and 2013, broken down by (i) year, (ii) province, (iii) region, (iv) appeals resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (v) appeals not resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (vi) appeals granted by the Department before a hearing was held, (vii) appeals withdrawn before a hearing was held, (viii) appeals withdrawn at hearing, (ix) appeals which were heard within 3 months of receipt of appeal notice, (x) appeals which were heard within 6 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xi) appeals which were heard within 9 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xii) appeals which were heard within 12 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xiii) appeals which took more than 12 months to be heard; (b) how many hearings were held by the OAS Review Tribunal each year from 2004 to 2013, broken down by (i) month, (ii) province; (c) how many appeals were made to the Pension Appeals Board between 2004 and 2013, broken down by (i) year, (ii) province, (iii) region, (iv) appeals made by clients, (v) appeals made by the Department, (vi) appeals resulting in an overturn of the OAS Review Tribunal’s decision, (vii) appeals not resulting in an overturn of the OAS Review Tribunal’s decision, (viii) appeals withdrawn before a hearing was held, (ix) appeals withdrawn at hearing, (x) appeals which were heard within 3 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xi) appeals which were heard within 6 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xii) appeals which were heard within 9 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xiii) appeals which were heard within 12 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xiv) appeals which were heard within 18 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xv) appeals which took more than 18 months after receipt of appeal notice to be heard; (d) how many hearings were held by the Pension Appeals Board in each year from 2004 to 2013, broken down by (i) month, (ii) province; (e) how many requests for reconsideration were made to the Department in 2012-2013 and 2013-2014, broken down by (i) month, (ii) province, (iii) region, (iv) requests resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (v) requests not resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (vi) reviews which took place within 30 days of receipt of the request, (vii) reviews which took place within 60 days of receipt of the request, (viii) reviews which took more than 60 days to complete; (f) how many people requesting a reconsideration from the Department and requesting their case file from the Department received their case file (i) within 30 days of making the request, (ii) within 60 days of making the request, (iii) within 90 days of making the request, (iv) more than 90 days after making the request; (g) how many people requesting a reconsideration from the Department and requesting their case file from the Department were refused their case file, broken down by province; (h) how many applicants requesting a reconsideration by the Department were notified by phone of the outcome of their request and how many were notified by letter; (i) how many appeals were made to the Income Security Section of the Social Security Tribunal regarding OAS pensions and benefits in 2013-2014, broken down by (i) month, (ii) province, (iii) region, (iv) appeals resulting in a summary dismissal, (v) appeals resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (vi) appeals not resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (vii) appeals withdrawn before a hearing was held, (viii) appeals withdrawn at hearing, (ix) appeals which were decided on the record, (x) appeals which were heard in writing, (xi) appeals which were heard over the phone, (xii) appeals which were heard in person, (xiii) appeals for which travel costs were granted to the appellant, (xiv) appeals which were heard within 30 days of receipt of appeal notice, (xv) appeals which were heard within 60 days of receipt of appeal notice, (xvi) appeals which were heard within 90 days of receipt of appeal notice, (xvii) appeals which were heard within 4 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xviii) appeals which were heard within 6 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xix) appeals which were heard within 9 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xx) appeals which took more than 9 months to be heard; (j) in how many cases was the Department informed by the Social Security Tribunal of a notice of appeal (i) within 7 days of receiving the notice, (ii) within 14 days of receiving the notice, (iii) within 21 days of receiving the notice, (iv) within 30 days of receiving the notice, (v) more than 30 days after receiving the notice; (k) how many hearings were held by the Income Security Section of the Social Security Tribunal in 2013-14, broken down by (i) month, (ii) province; (l) how many cases are currently waiting to be heard by the Income Security Section of the Social Security Tribunal; (m) how many people appealing to the Income Security Section of the Social Security Tribunal received their case file from the Department (i) within 30 days of making the request, (ii) within 60 days of making the request, (iii) within 90 days of making the request, (iv) more than 90 days after making the request; (n) how many people appealing to the Income Security Section of the Social Security Tribunal were refused their case file by the Department, broken down by province; (o) how many people appealing to the Income Security Section of the Social Security Tribunal were sent an acknowledgement of receipt of their notice of appeal (i) within 30 days of making the request, (ii) within 60 days of making the request, (iii) within 90 days of making the request, (iv) more than 90 days after notice was sent; (p) how many appeals were made to the Appeal Division of the Social Security Tribunal regarding Canada Pension Plan Disability Benefits in 2013-1014, broken down by (i) month, (ii) province, (iii) region, (iv) cases where leave is not granted to appeal, (v) appeals filed by the Department, (vi) appeals resulting in an overturn of the Income Security Section’s decision, (vii) cases not resulting in an overturn of the Income Security Section’s decision, (viii) appeals withdrawn before a hearing is held, (ix) appeals withdrawn at hearing, (x) appeals which were decided on the record, (xi) appeals which were heard over the phone, (xii) appeals which were heard in person, (xiii) appeals for which travel costs were granted to the appellant, (xiv) appeals which were heard within 30 days of receipt of appeal notice, (xv) appeals which were heard within 60 days of receipt of appeal notice, (xvi) appeals which were heard within 90 days of receipt of appeal notice, (xvii) appeals which were heard within 6 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xviii) appeals which were heard within 9 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xvii) appeals which took more than 9 months to be heard; (q) how many hearings were held by the Appeal Division of the Social Security Tribunal regarding OAS pensions and benefits in 2013-2014, broken down by (i) month, (ii) province; (r) how many cases are currently waiting to be heard by the Appeal Division of the Social Security Tribunal; (s) how many complaints has the Social Security Tribunal received about communications sent to an appellant rather than to a third-party where requested; (t) how many complaints has the Social Security Tribunal received about logistical problems with hearings held by teleconference; (u) how many complaints has the Social Security Tribunal received about the Notice of Readiness system; and (v) how many requests for postponement has the Social Security Tribunal received after a Notice of Readiness has been filed by the appellant?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 570--
Mr. Murray Rankin:
     With regard to Canada Pension Plan (CPP) pension and benefit appeals: (a) how many appeals were made to the CPP Review Tribunal between 2004 and 2013, broken down by (i) year, (ii) province, (iii) region, (iv) appeals resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (v) appeals not resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (vi) appeals granted by the Department before a hearing was held, (vii) appeals withdrawn before a hearing was held, (viii) appeals withdrawn at hearing, (ix) appeals which were heard within 3 months of receipt of appeal notice, (x) appeals which were heard within 6 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xi) appeals which were heard within 9 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xii) appeals which were heard within 12 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xiii) appeals which took more than 12 months to be heard; (b) how many hearings were held by the CPP Review Tribunal each year from 2004 to 2013, broken down by (i) month, (ii) province; (c) how many appeals were made to the Pension Appeals Board between 2004 and 2013, broken down by (i) year, (ii) province, (iii) region, (iv) appeals made by clients, (v) appeals made by the Department, (vi) appeals resulting in an overturn of the CPP Review Tribunal’s decision, (vii) appeals not resulting in an overturn of the CPP Review Tribunal’s decision, (viii) appeals withdrawn before a hearing was held, (ix) appeals withdrawn at hearing, (x) appeals which were heard within 3 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xi) appeals which were heard within 6 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xii) appeals which were heard within 9 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xiii) appeals which were heard within 12 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xiv) appeals which were heard within 18 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xv) appeals which took more than 18 months after receipt of appeal notice to be heard; (d) how many hearings were held by the Pension Appeals Board in each year from 2004 to 2013, broken down by (i) month, (ii) province; (e) how many requests for reconsideration were made to the Department in 2012-2013 and 2013-2014, broken down by (i) month, (ii) province, (iii) region, (iv) requests resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (v) requests not resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (vi) reviews which took place within 30 days of receipt of the request, (vii) reviews which took place within 60 days of receipt of the request, (viii) reviews which took more than 60 days to complete; (f) how many people requesting a reconsideration from the Department and requesting their case file from the Department received their case file (i) within 30 days of making the request, (ii) within 60 days of making the request, (iii) within 90 days of making the request, (iv) more than 90 days after making the request; (g) how many people requesting a reconsideration from the Department and requesting their case file from the Department were refused their case file, broken down by province; (h) how many applicants requesting a reconsideration by the Department were notified by phone of the outcome of their request and how many were notified by letter; (i) how many appeals were made to the Income Security Section of the Social Security Tribunal regarding CPP pensions and benefits in 2013-2014, broken down by (i) month, (ii) province, (iii) region, (iv) appeals resulting in a summary dismissal, (v) appeals resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (vi) appeals not resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (vii) appeals withdrawn before a hearing was held, (viii) appeals withdrawn at hearing, (ix) appeals which were decided on the record, (x) appeals which were heard in writing, (xi) appeals which were heard over the phone, (xii) appeals which were heard in person, (xiii) appeals for which travel costs were granted to the appellant, (xiv) appeals which were heard within 30 days of receipt of appeal notice, (xv) appeals which were heard within 60 days of receipt of appeal notice, (xvi) appeals which were heard within 90 days of receipt of appeal notice, (xvii) appeals which were heard within 4 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xviii) appeals which were heard within 6 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xix) appeals which were heard within 9 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xx) appeals which took more than 9 months to be heard; (j) in how many cases was the Department informed by the Social Security Tribunal of a notice of appeal (i) within 7 days of receiving the notice, (ii) within 14 days of receiving the notice, (iii) within 21 days of receiving the notice, (iv) within 30 days of receiving the notice, (v) more than 30 days after receiving the notice; (k) how many hearings were held by the Income Security Section of the Social Security Tribunal in 2013-2014, broken down by (i) month, (ii) province; (l) how many cases are currently waiting to be heard by the Income Security Section of the Social Security Tribunal; (m) how many people appealing to the Income Security Section of the Social Security Tribunal received their case file from the Department (i) within 30 days of making the request, (ii) within 60 days of making the request, (iii) within 90 days of making the request, (iv) more than 90 days after making the request; (n) how many people appealing to the Income Security Section of the Social Security Tribunal were refused their case file by the Department, broken down by province; (o) how many people appealing to the Income Security Section of the Social Security Tribunal were sent an acknowledgement of receipt of their notice of appeal (i) within 30 days of making the request, (ii) within 60 days of making the request, (iii) within 90 days of making the request, (iv) more than 90 days after making the request; (p) how many appeals were made to the Appeal Division of the Social Security Tribunal regarding CPP pensions and benefits in 2013-2014, broken down by (i) month, (ii) province, (iii) region, (iv) cases where leave is not granted to appeal, (v) appeals filed by the Department, (vi) appeals resulting in an overturn of the Income Security Section’s decision, (vii) cases not resulting in an overturn of the Income Security Section’s decision, (viii) appeals withdrawn before a hearing is held, (ix) appeals withdrawn at hearing, (x) appeals which were decided on the record, (xi) appeals which were heard over the phone, (xii) appeals which were heard in person, (xiii) appeals for which travel costs were granted to the appellant, (xiv) appeals which were heard within 30 days of receipt of appeal notice, (xv) appeals which were heard within 60 days of receipt of appeal notice, (xvi) appeals which were heard within 90 days of receipt of appeal notice, (xvii) appeals which were heard within 6 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xviii) appeals which were heard within 9 months of receipt of appeal notice, (xvii) appeals which took more than 9 months to be heard; (q) how many hearings were held by the Appeal Division of the Social Security Tribunal regarding CPP pensions and benefits in 2013-2014, broken down by (i) month, (ii) province; (r) how many cases are currently waiting to be heard by the Appeal Division of the Social Security Tribunal; (s) how many complaints has the Social Security Tribunal received about communications sent to an appellant rather than to a third-party where requested; (t) how many complaints has the Social Security Tribunal received about logistical problems with hearings held by teleconference; (u) how many complaints has the Social Security Tribunal received about the Notice of Readiness system; and (v) how many requests for postponement has the Social Security Tribunal received after a Notice of Readiness has been filed by the appellant?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 573--
Mr. Ryan Cleary:
     With regard to the Department of Finance and the 8.5% Hibernia share held by the government: (a) how many offers, both domestic and foreign, have been made for the 8.5% Hibernia share; (b) what has been the monetary range of these offers; (c) what did the provincial government of Newfoundland and Labrador offer; and (d) how much profit did the federal government make over the past 10 years from its share?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 575--
Hon. Judy Sgro:
     With respect to Canada’s participation in the High-Level Meeting of the Global Partnership for Effective Development Co-operation, held in Mexico City on April 17, 2014: (a) what are the names, titles, and affiliations of all persons who represented Canada at this meeting; and (b) what are the dates, file numbers, and titles of all documents prepared for the Canadian delegations or representatives at this meeting, or otherwise in respect of this meeting?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 576--
Hon. Judy Sgro:
     With respect to the National Day of Honour held on May 9, 2014: (a) what are the names, titles, and affiliations of those at the Canadian Legion with whom the Prime Minister’s office consulted in advance of the Day of Honour; (b) what are the names, titles, and affiliations of those persons outside government who were consulted in advance of the National Day of Honour; (c) what are the details of the documents produced to inform the Canadian Legions about the National Day of Honour in advance of the Day; (d) what are the details of the documents produced to inform the Canadian Legion of the schedule, plans, and format of the National Day of Honour; (e) what were the dates and times of meetings for Minister Baird, the minister’s staff, or Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development bureaucrats with representatives of the Canadian Legion concerning the National Day of Honour from March 1, 2012 to May 9, 2014; (f) what were the dates and times of meetings for Minister Nicholson, the minister’s staff, or Department of National Defence bureaucrats with representatives of the Canadian Legion concerning the National Day of Honour from March 1, 2012 to May 9, 2014; (g) what were the dates and times of meetings for the members of the Prime Minister’s Office with representatives of the Canadian Legion concerning the National Day of Honour from March 1, 2012 to May 9, 2014; (h) what are the dates and reference numbers of all briefing materials prepared for any Minister or any member of any Minister’s staff concerning the National Day of Honour?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 577--
Hon. Judy Sgro:
     With respect to the deportation of foreign nationals from Canada, for each year since 2009 inclusive: (a) how many persons were deported and to which countries; (b) how many were deported after having (i) been deemed a national security threat, (ii) violated immigration rules, (iii) received a criminal conviction; (c) to which countries does the government not deport persons (i) due to concerns of violating the principle of non-refoulement, as codified in international law, (ii) for any other reason, specifying the reason; (d) what are the dates, titles, and file numbers of all reports, memoranda, or other documents produced for the Minister of Public Safety in determining that persons will not be deported to a particular country or countries; (e) in the case of a country that has well-documented human rights violations, (i) what consideration is given to potential implications for deportees prior to Canadian government officials making final determinations on whether or not to deport persons to that country, (ii) which departments or agencies are involved in such a consideration, (iii) who has the final authority in making a determination; (f) on what basis would the need to deport a person trump concerns for that person's welfare after they are deported; (g) in the case of a country that is in the midst of a civil war or unrest, what consideration is given to this and its potential implications for a deportee prior to making a final determination on whether or not to deport a person; (h) what has been the annual cost in each year since 2009 inclusive of (i) transporting deportees to their destination, (ii) detaining deportees prior to deportation; (i) what is the average time a deportee is in custody prior to deportation; and (j) currently how many people are waiting to be deported?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 578--
Hon. Judy Sgro:
     With respect to the Clean Energy Ministerial held in May 2014 in South Korea: (a) what are the names, titles, and affiliations of all persons who attended on behalf of Canada; and (b) what are the dates, file numbers, and titles of all documents prepared for the attendees, or otherwise in respect of Canada’s participation?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 579--
Ms. Chrystia Freeland:
     With respect to Canadian official delegations to Ukraine in 2014: (a) what are the names, titles, and affiliations of all persons who travelled to Ukraine as part of these delegations; and (b) what are the dates, file numbers, and titles of all documents prepared for or in respect of these delegations?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 580--
Hon. Scott Brison:
    With regard to the Government Operations Centre, for each protest or demonstration reported to the Centre by government departments or agencies since January 1, 2006, what was the (i) date, (ii) location, (iii) description or nature, and (iv) department or agency making the report?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 581--
Hon. Scott Brison:
     With respect to Canada’s participation in the Organization of American States (OAS), since April 2010: (a) what are the names, titles, and affiliations of all persons who have represented Canada at events or meetings related to the OAS; and (b) what are the dates, file numbers, and titles of all documents prepared for the Canadian delegations or representatives, or otherwise in respect of such events or meetings?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 582--
Hon. Scott Brison:
     With regard to the use of government-issued credit cards by Ministerial exempt staff, for each Minister since May 31, 2012: (a) how many Ministerial exempt staff failed to pay the amount owing within the required time frame; (b) for each case identified in (a), (i) what is the name of the Ministerial exempt staff member, (ii) what was the amount owing; (c) how many Ministerial exempt staff used government-issued credit cards for non-governmental business; (d) for each case identified in (c), (i) what is the name of the Ministerial exempt staff member, (ii) what specific transactions were made and for what amounts; (e) how much has the government had to pay to cover the delinquent accounts of Ministerial exempt staff; and (f) of the amount in (e) how much has the government recovered from the relevant Ministerial exempt staff members?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 583--
Hon. Scott Brison:
     With regard to government advertising: (a) how much has each department, agency, or Crown corporation spent to purchase advertising on Xbox, Xbox 360, or Xbox One in each fiscal year since 2006-2007 inclusive; (b) what was the (i) nature, (ii) purpose, (iii) target audience or demographic, (iv) cost of each individual advertising purchase; (c) what was the Media Authorization Number for each advertising purchase; and (d) what are the file numbers of all documents, reports, or memoranda concerning each advertising purchase or of any post-campaign assessment or evaluation?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 584--
Mr. Emmanuel Dubourg:
     With respect to government advertising, for each television advertisement which has been aired during National Hockey League playoff game broadcasts since January 1, 2006: what is the (a) identification number, name or ADV number; (b) number of times each advertisement has aired during such a broadcast, specifying the total number of times and the total length of time (seconds or minutes), broken down by year and by month for each advertisement; (c) total cost to air each advertisement, broken down by year and by month; (d) criteria used to select each of the advertisement placements; (e) media outlet used to air each advertisement, broken down by year and by month; and (f) the total amount spent per outlet, broken down by year and by month?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 585--
Mr. Emmanuel Dubourg:
     With regard to government real property management, for each contract for the appraisal of real property since January 1, 2006: what are the (i) file numbers, (ii) dates, (iii) location or description of the property?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 586--
Mr. Emmanuel Dubourg:
     With regard to government procurement: what are the details of all contracts for the provision of research or speechwriting services to Ministers since April 1, 2006, (a) providing for each such contract (i) the start and end dates, (ii) contracting parties, (iii) file number, (iv) nature or description of the work; and (b) providing, in the case of a contract for speechwriting, the (i) date, (ii) location, (iii) audience or event at which the speech was, or was intended to be, delivered?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 587--
Mr. Emmanuel Dubourg:
     With regard to bank notes: (a) how many requests to reproduce the image of Canadian bank notes have been received by the Bank of Canada since April 1, 2006; (b) how many such requests have been approved, and how many have been rejected; (c) for each such request, what was (i) the proposed reproduction and its purpose, (ii) the proposed placement or distribution of the material featuring the bank note image, (iii) the date of the approval, (iv) the name of the requester, where requested by a group, business, or organization, (iv) whether the request was approved or rejected?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 589--
Ms. Yvonne Jones:
     With regard to National Defence: (a) what were the projects, proposals, plans, or developments which were to have been the subject of the anticipated “announcements” concerning 5 Wing Goose Bay contemplated or referred to by the former Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs in an interview with CBC Newfoundland and Labrador On Point which aired on or about May 26, 2012; (b) were those announcements ever made, and if so, what were they, and when were they made; (c) if those announcements were not made, (i) what progress has been made towards the projects, proposals, plans, or developments contemplated in (a), (ii) when will they be made public; and (d) what steps have been taken since January 2006 towards the establishment at the base of (i) a rapid reaction battalion, (ii) an unmanned aerial vehicle squadron, (iii) any other unit, facility, or function which was not already established at the base on January 1, 2006, specifying the nature of that proposed or anticipated unit, facility, or function?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 590--
Mr. Frank Valeriote:
    With respect to the Scott et al. v. Attorney General of Canada legal action against the Government of Canada: (a) what is the total amount of money spent by all departments and agencies, broken down by department and agency, since October 30, 2012, in its defence against the Canadian veterans' class action lawsuit; and (b) what is the total amount of money all departments and agencies have spent to hire outside legal counsel, broken down by department and agency, for the same time period referred to in (a)?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 591--
Hon. Irwin Cotler:
    With regard to the comments of Justice Minister Peter MacKay in the House on June 4, regarding a “compromise that occurred in the leaking of information around” the process of a Supreme Court appointment, and the statement of his spokesperson that “we are concerned about recent leaks from what was intended to be a confidential process, we are reviewing the process for future appointments” as quoted by the Toronto Star on June 3: (a) to what leaks do these comments refer; (b) when were these leaks discovered; (c) how were these leaks discovered; (d) how was the government informed of these leaks; (e) what measures were in place to prevent leaks; (f) how does the government define the “leaking of information”; (g) what meetings have occurred on the subject of these leaks, (i) on what dates, (ii) with whom present, (iii) with what goals, (iv) with what outcomes; (h) what materials, briefing notes, or other memos were created regarding these leaks and what are their dates of creation and file or reference numbers; (i) who developed the materials in (h); (j) do the “leaks” refer to an article by John Ivison of the National Post, dated May 1, regarding communications between the Chief Justice and Ministers of the Crown, or to material cited in that article; (k) do the “leaks” refer to an article by Laura Stone of Global News dated May 7 regarding communications between the Prime Minister’s Office and Marc Nadon suggesting Justice Nadon leave the Federal Court to rejoin the Quebec bar, or to material cited in that article; (l) do the “leaks” refer to an article by Sean Fine of the Globe and Mail dated May 23 regarding activities of the selection panel and names on government lists, or to material cited in that article; (m) if the answer to (j), (k), or (l) is negative, does the government dispute the veracity of the content referred to in the article referenced in the question; (n) what specific information has been leaked; (o) what is the extent and scope of the leak; (p) what are the consequences of the leak; (q) what meetings occurred regarding the articles referenced in (j), (k), and (l), (i) on what dates, (ii) who was present, (iii) what were the goals of the meeting, (iv) what was the outcome of the meeting; (r) what materials, briefing notes, or other memos were created regarding the articles in (j), (k), and (l) and what are their dates of creation and file or reference numbers; (s) from where did these leaks originate; (t) who had access to the information leaked; (u) what was done, if anything, to limit the dissemination of material once leaked; (v) were any news outlets contacted in an effort to limit the publication of leaked material; (w) were any journalists contacted to correct information in any story referencing a “leak”; (x) does the government’s conception of a leak include dissemination of information that is inaccurate; (y) what is the total number of leaks that occurred regarding the appointment process, and how was this number determined; (z) what steps has the government undertaken to investigate these leaks; (aa) have any meetings with the RCMP occurred regarding these leaks, (i) if yes, when and with whom, (ii) if not, why not; (bb) have any meetings with the Director of Public Prosecutions occurred regarding these leaks, (i) if yes, when and with whom, (ii) if not, why not; (cc) have any meetings with the Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs occurred regarding these leaks, (i) if yes, when and with whom, (ii) if not, why not; (dd) what steps is the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs undertaking to investigate these leaks; (ee) what steps is the Department of Justice taking to investigate these leaks; (ff) what steps is the Minister taking to investigate these leaks; (gg) when is it expected that any investigation will be concluded; (hh) what penalties might be imposed if the sources of the leaks are found; (ii) what cost is expected to be incurred relative to any investigation into these leaks; (jj) what additional measures are being taken to ensure that more leaks do not occur; (kk) what steps were taken in the Prime Minister’s Office to investigate these leaks; (ll) what steps were taken in the Privy Council Office to investigate these leaks; (mm) what meetings or communications transpired between the Minister of Justice and the Prime Minister or his office regarding these leaks; (nn) who is responsible for these leaks; (oo) who is being investigated for these leaks; (pp) what suspects have been identified; (qq) has any motive been determined and if so, what are the motives and how was this determined; (rr) is the government itself investigating these leaks or will a third party be involved; (ss) what steps will be taken to ensure independence in any investigation of these leaks; (tt) have any wiretaps or other judicial orders been sought in relation to an investigation into these leaks; (uu) does the government consider information as being leaked if its dissemination occurs in a form where it is protected by privilege, such as on the floor of the House of Commons; (vv) who was informed of the leaks, on what date, and by what means; (ww) what was the impact of these leaks on the existing Supreme Court appointment process; (xx) what is expected to be the impact of these leaks on any future Supreme Court appointment process; (yy) how was the determination in (xx) made, by whom, with what policy objectives in mind, and with what expectations relative to future conduct by the government in identifying a nominee to the Supreme Court of Canada; (zz) who is in charge of investigating these leaks; (aaa) will Parliament be informed of the results of any investigation and if so, when; (bbb) if no investigations are occurring, why not; (ccc) if no investigations are occurring, is this compatible with the government’s policy objectives that include being “tough on crime”; (ddd) what measures will be in place for a future Supreme Court appointments process to prevent such leaks; (eee) what confidential materials related to the appointment process were created and distributed; and (fff) were all materials in (eee) returned, (i) if yes, when, (ii) if no, what materials remain unreturned to the government?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 592--
Hon. Stéphane Dion:
    With regard to the Translation Bureau: (a) what was the total number of contracts awarded to outside suppliers for each year from 2006 to 2014; (b) with regard to the contracts (under $25,000) awarded to outside suppliers, for each year from 2006 to 2014, what are the (i) suppliers’ names, (ii) contract reference numbers, (iii) contract dates, (iv) descriptions of services provided, (v) delivery dates, (vi) original contract amounts, (vii) final contract amounts if different from the original contract amounts; (c) with regard to the total cost of contracts awarded by the Translation Bureau to outside suppliers for each year from 2006 to 2014, what are the (i) suppliers’ names, (ii) contract reference numbers, (iii) contract dates, (iv) descriptions of services provided, (v) delivery dates, (vi) original contract amounts, (vii) final contract amounts if different from the original contract amounts; (d) what percentage of all work performed by the Translation Bureau was assigned to outside suppliers for each year from 2006 to 2014; (e) what was the Translation Bureau’s total business volume (in dollars) for each year from 2006 to 2014; (f) what percentage of documents was translated from French to English by the Translation Bureau for each year between 2006 and 2014; (g) what percentage of documents was translated from French to English by outside suppliers contracted by the Translation Bureau for each year between 2006 and 2014; (h) with regard to the elimination of positions within the Translation Bureau, for each year from 2006 to 2014, (i) how many full-time positions were eliminated, (ii) how many part-time positions were eliminated, (iii) which positions, (iv) in which Bureau departments, (v) who was consulted, (vi) what impact has this had on delivery deadlines for translation requests; and (i) regarding the hiring of employees within the Translation Bureau, (i) how many new positions were created within the Translation Bureau for each year from 2006 to 2014, (ii) position titles, (iii) how many full-time positions (iv) how many part-time positions, (v) in which departments were the new positions created?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 593--
Hon. Stéphane Dion:
     With regard to the former Yekau Lake Practice Bombing Range: what are the dates, titles and file numbers of all reports, memoranda, dockets, dossiers or other records since January 1, 2006, held by any department or agency concerning the Range or environmental remediation of the site?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 594--
Hon. Stéphane Dion:
    With regard to government communications, for each announcement made by a Minister or Parliamentary Secretary in the National Capital Region in a location other than the parliamentary precinct or the National Press Theatre: what was the (a) date, (b) location, (c) purpose or subject matter, (d) name and portfolio of the Minister or Parliamentary Secretary; and (e) what were the amounts and details of all expenses related to making each such announcement?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 595--
Mr. Glenn Thibeault:
     With regard to uncollected fines and administrative monetary penalties: broken down by fiscal year and offence, since 2005-2006, up to and including the current fiscal year, (a) what is the total amount collected by the Public Prosecution Service of Canada under the National Fine Recovery Program; and (b) what is the total amount of unpaid fines that has yet to be collected by the Public Prosecution Service of Canada under the National Fine Recovery Program?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 596--
Mr. Massimo Pacetti:
     With regard to contracts under $10,000 granted by the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the regions of Quebec since January 1, 2006: what are the (i) vendors' names, (ii) contacts’ reference numbers, (iii) dates of contracts, (iv) descriptions of the services provided, (v) delivery dates, (vi) original contracts’ values, (vii) final contracts’ values if different from the original contracts’ values?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 597--
Ms. Hélène Laverdière:
     With regard to the government’s Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (MNCH) Summit held in Toronto, May 28-30 2014: (a) who within the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development was responsible for the organization of the MNCH Summit; (b) what was the initial budget of the event and (i) did the Summit go over budget, (ii) if so, what were the cost overruns, (iii) were there unforeseen expenses; (c) what was the total cost of the Summit; (d) what was the total cost for the venue rental (Fairmont Royal York); (e) how many bedrooms in the Fairmont Royal York were paid for by the government and at what cost; (f) how many names were on the final guest list and what were the names; (g) how many government officials and employees attended the Summit and what are their names; (h) how many guests who are not employees of the government had their stay at the Fairmont Royal York paid for by the government and what are their names; (i) did the government pay for the travel expenses of international visitors; (j) how was the Fairmont Royal York chosen as a venue for the Summit, (i) on what date was the hotel first contacted with regard to the Summit, (ii) on what date was the contract with the hotel signed, (iii) did the Summit organizers contact venues other than the Fairmont Royal York and, if so, how many; (k) what was the total cost for security; (l) what was the total cost of meals and hospitality; and (m) was the Summit paid for by funds dedicated to the Muskoka Initiative?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 598--
Ms. Hélène Laverdière:
     With regard to Canada’s funding and participation within the United Nations (UN) and its agencies: for each fiscal year from 2006-2007 to 2013-2014, (a) how much funding did the government allocate for each UN agency, related specialized agency, fund and program; (b) for each UN body, specialized institution, fund and program, which ones (i) saw their funding reduced, (ii) saw their funding fully cut, (iii) saw their funding increased, or (iv) received new funding from the government; (c) what is the annual evolution of Canada’s overall multilateral funding for all UN agencies, funds and programs compared to its bilateral funding; (d) what have been Canada’s priorities at the UN from 2006-2014; (e) what have been Canada’s priority issues since 2006; (f) what resources and projects were assigned to each priority issue and what were the results; (g) how has Canada voted for each UN General Assembly resolution since 2006; (h) how did Canada vote at the UN’s other bodies; (i) does the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development provide Canada with directives in writing on how to vote within the UN’s various bodies; (j) what department within DFATD, and previously within DFAIT, is responsible for preparing such documents for the votes; (k) what departments and members of the Prime Minister’s Office are responsible for or are involved in the (i) choices, (ii) directions, (iii) monitoring involving Canada’s financial contributions to the UN, and what are the roles of those working within these Canadian bodies; (l) which countries benefit from Canadian funding within the UN; (m) what partners, non-governmental organizations and others are involved in implementing programs funded by Canada at the UN; (n) how has Canada contributed, both financially and in its participation to the issue of reforming the UN since 2006; (o) why was Canada defeated during the election for non-permanent membership on the Security Council; and (p) did DFAIT prepare the Government of Canada’s policy papers for Canada’s election to a seat on the Security Council in 2010?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 599--
Mr. Scott Simms:
     With regard to construction-related tenders, requests for proposals, contracts, and related activities on all military bases, assets, and facilities related to 9 Wing Gander since 2006: what are the file numbers of all ministerial briefings or departmental correspondence between the government and all entities, departments, companies, contractors, or individuals, broken down by (i) minister or department, (ii) relevant file number, (iii) correspondence or file type, (iv) date, (v) purpose, (vi) origin, (vii) intended destination, (viii) other officials copied or involved, (ix) military base, asset, or facility, (x) type of activity or contract?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 600--
Mr. Ted Hsu:
    With regard to Correctional Service Canada and the closure of Kingston Penitentiary (KP) and the Regional Treatment Centre (RTC): (a) as of April 19, 2012, what was the stated plan for the relocation of inmates; (b) as of September 30, 2013, what was the stated plan for the relocation of inmates; (c) as of October 1, 2013, where were the inmates residing; (d) as of April 1, 2014, where were the inmates residing; (e) as of June 1, 2014, where were the inmates residing; (f) as of June 1, 2014, what was the stated plan for the relocation of inmates; (g) what modifications to Collins Bay Institution were procured to address the increased inmate population resulting from the temporary relocation of inmates, (i) on what dates were these modifications authorized, (ii) on whose authority, (iii) what contracts were signed relating to these modifications, (iv) what is the dollar value of each of the contracts in (iii), (v) what is the status of each of the contracts listed in (iii), (vi) what will the total cost be for temporarily housing inmates at Collins Bay Institution; (h) what modifications to Bath Institution were procured to address the increased inmate population, (i) on what dates were these modifications authorized, (ii) on whose authority, (iii) what contracts were signed relating to these modifications, (iv) what is the dollar value of each of the contracts in (iii), (v) what is the status of each of the contracts listed in (iii), (vi) what will the total cost be for modifications required to accommodate the increased inmate population for KP and RTC; and (i) what modifications to Millhaven Institution were procured to address the increased inmate population, (i) on what dates were these modifications authorized, (ii) on whose authority, (iii) what contracts were signed relating to these modifications, (iv) what is the dollar value of each of the contracts in (iii), (v) what is the status of each of the contracts listed in (iii), (vi) what will the total cost be for modifications required to accommodate the increased inmate population for KP and RTC?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 601--
Hon. John McKay:
     With regard to Canada’s climate-change policy: (a) will the government match the United States’ recently-announced plan to reduce 17 percent of its carbon emissions from 2005 levels by 2020 by reducing carbon pollution from the nation’s coal fired power plants, their largest emitter, by 30%; (b) if the government intends to match these efforts against Canada’s largest emitter, the oil and gas sector, what departments or agencies will be involved in this preparation; (c) are there existing plans in place to reduce carbon emissions by 30% below 2005 levels by 2020; (d) if so, what are the details of these plans; (e) how and when will these plans or policies be communicated to the Canadian public; and (f) when, where and how many times has the Minister of the Environment or her staff met with representatives of the oil and gas industry to negotiate greenhouse gas emission reductions?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 602--
Hon. Gerry Byrne:
     With regard to the Department of Canadian Heritage: what was the (i) date, (ii) location, (iii) agenda, (iv) list of attendees or participants by name and title, (v) file or reference number, for minutes of all meetings of any group or committee involved in the planning or programming of 2014 Canada Day events in Ottawa?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 603--
Mr. Rodger Cuzner:
    With regard to the portions of the anti-spam legislation that come into force on July 1, 2014: (a) how many inquiries has the government received from companies about the new law; (b) what outreach activities has the government undertaken to help companies understand their obligations under the new act; and (c) how much money has the government spent to inform Canadians or businesses about the new law?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 604--
Mr. Rodger Cuzner:
     With regard to National Parks: what are the dates, titles, and file numbers of all reports, memoranda, dockets, dossiers, or other records, since January 1, 2006, held by any department or agency, concerning the proposed Never Forgotten National Memorial at Green Cove, Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 605--
Mr. David McGuinty:
     With regard to the National Capital Commission (NCC): (a) what were the costs and details of expenditures related to the relocation of the NCC's Capital Infocentre, located at 90 Wellington Street, Ottawa, Ontario, to the World Exchange Plaza, located at 45 O'Connor Street, Ottawa, Ontario, in 2011; and (b) what are the costs and details of expenditures, or the anticipated costs and details of expenditures, related to the anticipated relocation of the Infocentre from the World Exchange Plaza to its former location at 90 Wellington Street?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 606--
Mr. Scott Andrews:
     With regard to the operations of Marine Atlantic Incorporated and the operation of vessels between the ports of Port aux Basques and Argentia, Newfoundland and Labrador and North Sydney, Nova Scotia: for the time period of fiscal years 2009-2010 through to 2013-2014, (a) how may trips were cancelled in each of these years including the (i) date, (ii) time of scheduled crossing, (iii) scheduled port of departure and arrival, (iv) reason for cancellation; (b) for each crossing during this period of time, what was the volume of traffic onboard compared to the capacity of the vessel for commercial and non-commercial traffic; and (c) what were all the various advertised rates for each of these years?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 610--
Mr. Scott Andrews:
    With regard to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, and more specifically all fish quota allocations in the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO) fishing areas 2J3KL, 3MNO, 3PS, 3PN and 4R for the time period 2004-2014: (a) what quotas in each of these NAFO areas were assigned for harvesting by companies or businesses, including the company or business name and address, quota amount, species, applicable NAFO area, year and any specific conditions of license; and (b) of the quota allocations identified in (a), how many of the companies or businesses that were granted an initial quota were permitted to have another company or fisher harvest (sublease) the initially assigned quota, including the name and address of this assigned company or fisher, quota amount assigned, species, applicable NAFO area and any specific conditions attached to the permission granted?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 611--
Mr. Sean Casey:
     With regard to any travel claim or any other expense claim submitted by any Minister, Parliamentary Secretary or Minister of State, or any ministerial staff: since 2006 and broken down by department or agency, what is (i) the amount of each claim rejected, (ii) the reason why the claim was rejected, (iii) the reason why the claim was amended?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 612--
Ms. Rathika Sitsabaiesan:
     With regard to the proposed Rouge National Urban Park (RNUP): (a) what policies, timelines, actions and monitoring does the draft RNUP legislation and strategic plan specify to protect and restore native habitat in the park to (i) restore the “main ecological corridor” outlined in the Greenbelt Plan (2005), the Rouge North Management Plan (section 4.1.1.2), the Little Rouge Corridor Management Plan (2007), the Rouge Park Natural Heritage Action Plan (2008), and the Rouge River Watershed Strategy (2007), (ii) protect and improve water quality and migratory fish habitat within the Little Rouge River, part of the Toronto Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement “Area of Concern”, (iii) surpass the minimum 30% forest cover and 10% wetland per watershed recommended in the report “How Much Habitat is Enough” for “viable wildlife populations”, (iv) increase the sequestering of precipitation and carbon dioxide to mitigate climatic extremes and reduce the risk to properties and infra-structure from flooding and erosion, (v) improve habitat size, quality and connectivity, (vi) combat adverse edge effects and invasive species, (vii) improve the park's ecological health, resilience and integrity, (viii) increase the proportion of the park accessible to nature and people; (b) what policies, actions and timelines does the draft RNUP legislation and strategic plan outline to respect, strengthen and implement existing federal, provincial and municipal environmental policies, laws and plans, including the (i) Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement and Toronto “AOC” Remedial Action Plan, (ii) Rouge River Watershed Strategy (2007), (iii) Canada's Species at Risk Act and associated commitments, (iv) Canadian National Parks Act and Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, v) Species at Risk Act and Migratory Birds Act, (vi) Fisheries Act and draft Fisheries Management Plan for Rouge River (2011), (vii) Navigable Waters Protection Act, (viii) Rouge Park Management Plan (1994), (ix) Rouge North Management Plan (2001), (x) Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan (2002), (xi) Greenbelt Plan (2005), (xii) Little Rouge Corridor Management Plan (2007), (xiii) Rouge Park Natural Heritage Action Plan (2008); (c) how much of the land within the 57 km2 RNUP Study Area is (i) native forest habitat, (ii) wetland habitat, (iii) leased for cash cropping of corn or soy beans, (iv) leased for agricultural uses other than cash cropping, (v) leased for private residences, (vi) within public utility corridors, (vii) not leased, (viii) accessible to the public; (d) what area (in hectares) and percentage of the proposed RNUP Study Area is currently leased to private individuals or corporations; (e) how many individuals currently lease land within the RNUP study area; (f) how many land parcels in the RNUP study area are currently leased to (i) farmers who once owned the subject land parcel but were expropriated in the 1970s, (ii) provincial government employees or their close family members, (iii) federal government employees or their close family members, (iv) Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) employees or their close family members, (v) municipal government employees or their close family members, (vi) non farmers, (vii) lease holders who do not live in the RNUP area; (g) for the most recent year available, what are all the leased properties in the RNUP study area, broken down by (i) geographic location and approximate boundaries of the leased property marked on a map, (ii) land area (hectares) associated with the lease, (iii) buildings associated with the lease (for example 1 house, 900 ft2, 1 barn 1500 ft2, (iv) name of leaseholder and name of tenant(s), (v) annual lease rate and length of lease, (vi) length of time the current leaseholder has leased the property, (vii) true annual public cost of property upkeep and lease administration, (viii) public investment in the property needed to address modern building code, fire, safety and energy conservation standards; (h) what is the current TRCA and Transport Canada process for awarding and renewing land leases in the RNUP study area and what are any proposed changes to improve competition, public transparency, fairness and fair market return on these public land leases; (i) what percentage of the corn grown on leased Rouge Park lands in 2013 was grown for ethanol production; (j) what are the planned staffing expenses and other RNUP expenditures by Parks Canada in 2014-2015 and 2015-2016; and (k) what is the planned utilization of the funding from the Waterfront Regeneration Trust in 2014-2015 and 2015-2016 by Parks Canada or the TRCA?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 613--
Ms. Elizabeth May:
     With regard to Bill C-22, with particular emphasis on the Nuclear Liability and Compensation Act (NLCA): (a) in developing this legislation, what was the government`s policy for consulting with non-industry stakeholders and civil society groups, (i) which non-industry stakeholders and civil society groups did the government consult with, (ii) which aspects of the legislation were they consulted on, (iii) what were the exact dates on which these consultations took place; (b) in developing the NLCA, did the Department of Natural Resources ask licensees of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission who are nuclear power generating station operators who supply electricity to public electricity grids whether adopting unlimited liability for nuclear operators, without increasing financial security, would increase electricity prices, and if so, (i) what were the responses of the licensees, (ii) what evidence does the government have to support the assertion that removing the cap on operator liability, without raising financial security, would increase electricity prices; (c) does the Department of Natural Resources know how much self-insurance licensees carry for on-site damage and, if so, what amount is insured by the licensees for that on-site damage; (d) what analysis or assessment has the government performed to determine whether signing and ratifying the Convention on Supplementary Convention (CSC) and passing this legislation would result in an increase in public safety; (e) has the government assessed whether the NLCA will have a negative or positive impact on the achievement of Canada’s sustainable development goals and, if so, what were the results of this assessment; (f) has the Department of Natural Resources asked industry whether nuclear suppliers would accept exposure to liability and, if so, (i) what were the responses provided, (ii) what were the exact dates on which these consultations took place; (g) is it necessary to link operator liability caps to the capacity of insurance providers to provide insurance and, if so, (i) why is this so, (ii) why was this not a limiting factor in developing Part 1 of Bill C-22; (h) what is the government's analysis of what level of costs would be an inordinate “burden” on the nuclear industry for insurance; (i) why did the government not use the same definition of ‘reasonable costs’ for insurance for the nuclear industry and the offshore oil and gas industry, (i) what were the respective definitions used for Parts 1 and 2 of Bill C-22, (ii) how are they different, (iii) what was the policy rationale for using different definitions; and (j) after the passage of the NLCA, how would the CSC be ratified, (i) would parliamentary debate be required before the convention could be ratified, (ii) does the government agree that the ratification of the convention should be reviewed by an all-party committee, (iii) why has the government not ratified any other international nuclear liability conventions since the 1960s, (iv) can the government file reservations or exemptions regarding any requirements of the CSC, v) have any other signatories to the CSC filed any such reservations or exemptions, and if so, which signatories have done so and what are the specifics of the reservations and exemptions?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 614--
Ms. Kirsty Duncan:
     With respect to the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) doctrine: (a) how does the government define this doctrine; (b) when does this doctrine apply; (c) is this doctrine a part of Canadian foreign policy and, if so, how; (d) who determines when R2P is appropriate and how is this determination made; (e) when was the doctrine most recently mentioned by the Prime Minister in a public speech and in what context; (f) when was the doctrine most recently mentioned by the Prime Minister in a public document and in what context; (g) when was the doctrine most recently mentioned by a minister other than the Prime Minister in a public speech and in what context; (h) when was the doctrine most recently mentioned by a minister other than the Prime Minister in a public document and in what context; (i) for (e), (f), (g), (h), what was the date of the document or speech and where can the full text be accessed; (j) in what discussions has the Prime Minister raised R2P in the last two years, broken down by date and parties present; (k) in what discussions has the Minister of Foreign Affairs raised R2P in the last two years, broken down by date and parties present; (l) in what discussions has a minister other than the Minister of Foreign Affairs or Prime Minister raised R2P in the last two years, broken down by date and parties present; (m) for (j), (k) and (l), (i) when did the meetings occur, (ii) who was present, (iii) what was the context, (iv) what notes or minutes of the meeting exist and what is their file or control number, (v) why was R2P mentioned, (vi) what was said; (n) in what meetings attended by the Prime Minister since 2010 has R2P been on the agenda; (o) in what meetings attended by the Minister of Foreign Affairs since 2010 has R2P been on the agenda; (p) in what meetings attended by a minister other than the Prime Minister or Minister of Foreign Affairs since 2010 was R2P on the agenda; (q) were any meetings where R2P was on the agenda declined by the Prime Minister since 2010 and, if so, why was the meeting declined; (r) were any meetings where R2P was on the agenda declined by the Minister of Foreign Affairs since 2010 and, if so, why was the meeting declined; (s) were any meetings where R2P was on the agenda declined by a Minister other than the Minister of Foreign Affairs or Prime Minister 2010 and, if so, why was the meeting declined; (t) does the government view R2P as part of domestic policy and, if so, how; (u) in what ways has R2P found expression in Canadian policy; (v) what government decisions have been made that implement R2P; (w) what directives or memos have been created regarding R2P and what are their access or control numbers, sorted by agency creating the document; (x) what goals has the government identified with respect to R2P and how are these goals being implemented and assessed; (y) what meetings involving the government have taken place in the last five years regarding R2P, (i) who was present, (ii) what was the agenda, (iii) what documents were prepared for the meeting or created in relation to it and what are their file or control numbers; (z) to what conferences regarding R2P have government employees attended, broken down by date and title; (aa) broken down by date, to what conferences regarding R2P has the government declined to send representation and what was the reason the conference was declined; (bb) what steps are being taken to implement R2P and who is taking these steps; (cc) in what ways can the steps in (bb) be verified; (dd) how is Parliament kept abreast of developments regarding R2P; (ee) what discussions has the government had regarding how to ‘domesticate’ R2P and what was the (i) venue, (ii) date, (iii) outcomes, (iv) attendee list; (ff) what steps has the government taken to appoint a senior-level government official to serve as a National R2P Focal Point for atrocity prevention; (gg) by when will Canada have a senior-level government official to serve as a National R2P Focal Point for atrocity prevention; (hh) what policy objectives have been identified with respect to having to appoint a senior-level government official to serving a National R2P Focal Point for atrocity prevention; (ii) what studies have been undertaken by the government with respect to R2P since 2006, broken down by date of study and indicating (i) title, (ii) authors, (iv) results, (v) recommendations, (vi) where and how it may be accessed; (jj) what discussions regarding R2P has Canada had with the United Kingdom and the United States, (i) when did any discussions take place, (ii) what were any outcomes, (iii) what were the resulting recommendations, (iv) was a report produced and, if so, how can it be obtained; (kk) does the government have a comprehensive national strategy to mainstream the prevention of genocide and mass atrocities and, if so, how can it be accessed; (ll) what government strategies, memos and documents have been prepared regarding the prevention of genocide and mass atrocities, broken down by date, and what are their file or control numbers; (mm) what steps is the government taking to develop a comprehensive national strategy to mainstream the prevention of genocide and mass atrocities; (nn) who is responsible for the development of a national strategy to mainstream the prevention of genocide and mass atrocities; (oo) has the government undertaken studies to examine the potential use of mobile technology to produce increasingly precise and accurate warnings for potential victims of mass atrocities to adequately prepare or move to safety and, if so, (i) what are the studies’ titles, (ii) dates, (iii) results, (iv) recommendations; (pp) what meetings, briefings, or memos have occurred or been produced regarding the potential use of mobile technology to produce increasingly precise and accurate warnings for potential victims of mass atrocities; (qq) what discussions has Canada had with the United Nations (UN) regarding R2P; (rr) what meetings and discussions has Canada had with the UN’s Department of Peacekeeping Operations regarding R2P, (i) when did the meetings occur, (ii) who was present, (iii) what was the topic; (ss) what meetings and discussions has Canada had with the UN’s Department of Political Affairs regarding R2P, (i) when did the meetings occur, (ii) who was present, (iii) what was the topic; (tt) what meetings and discussions has Canada had with the Secretary-General’s Special Advisor on Genocide Prevention regarding R2P, (i) when did the meetings occur (ii) who was present, (iii) what was the topic; (uu) what were the outcomes of the meetings in (qq), (rr), (ss) and (tt), broken down by meeting; (vv) were any reports produced with respect to the meetings or discussions in (qq), (rr), (ss), (tt) and, if so, (i) how can they be accessed, (ii) what are their file or control numbers; (ww) what steps has Canada made with respect to creating a standing, rapid-reaction UN force, (i) when did any discussions take place, (ii) with whom did any discussions take place, (iii) what were any outcomes, (iv) was a report produced and, if so, how can it be accessed; (xx) what discussions has Canada had with respect to limitations on the use of veto powers when situations meet R2P criteria and, if so, (iii) what was the venue, date, outcomes and, if not, (iv) why not; (yy) what analysis or strategy meetings and documents have been prepared regarding (xx) and what are their file or control numbers; (zz) what discussions has Canada had with other governments, UN agencies and departments with respect to early warning and prevention, broken down by date an indicating (i) venue, (ii) topic, (iii) persons present, (iv) outcomes, (iv) reports, memos, or other materials relative to the meeting or discussion and their file or control numbers; (aaa) what budget exists for R2P implementation and how has this been determined; (bbb) what memos, directives, or documents exist regarding the phrase “Responsibility to Protect” and what are their file or control numbers; (ccc) have government employees been discouraged from or otherwise restricted in their use of the phrase “Responsibility to Protect”; and (ddd) have any government documents been edited to remove the phrase “Responsibility to Protect” and, if so, (i) what was the document, (ii) when did the edit occur, (iii) why was the change made?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 618--
Mr. Rodger Cuzner:
    With regard to Social Security Tribunal (SST) and the four administrative tribunals it replaced, the Employment Insurance Board of Referees, the Employment Insurance Umpires, the Canada Pension Plan and Old Age Security Review Tribunals, and the Pension Appeals Board: (a) what is the number and percentage of total appeals that were made to each prior tribunal for fiscal years 2004-2005 to 2012-2013, broken down by (i) province, (ii) region, (iii) appeals resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (iv) appeals not resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (v) appeals withdrawn before hearing by the claimant and the Department, (vi) appeals withdrawn at hearing by the claimant and the Department, (vii) appeals which were heard within 30 days of receipt of appeal notice, (viii) average number of days it took to schedule a hearing after receipt of appeal notice, (ix) when is an appeal file considered in backlog, (x) how many files were in backlog at the end of each fiscal year; (b) what is the number and percentage of total appeals concerning Employment Insurance that were made to the SST General Division for fiscal year 2012-2013 and year to date, broken down by (i) province, (ii) region, (iii) appeals resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (iv) appeals not resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (v) appeals withdrawn before hearing by the claimant and by the government, (vi) appeals withdrawn at hearing by the claimant and by the Department, (vii) appeals which were heard within 30 days of receipt of appeal notice, (viii) appeals summarily dismissed by the SST General Division because it felt there was no reasonable chance of success, (ix) in how many cases referred in (b)(viii) did the claimant not submit additional information after being told that his or her case might be summarily dismissed, (x) how many initial requests by the claimant or the government to adjourn or postpone the hearing were received pursuant to section 11 of the SST Regulations, and how many were granted and denied, (xi) when is an appeal file considered in backlog, (xii) how many files were in backlog at the end of each month and fiscal year, (xiii) what are the reasons for any backlog, (xiv) what is being done about any backlog, (xv) what is the oldest appeal in backlog; (c) what is the number and percentage of total appeals concerning Old Age Security that were made to the SST General Division for fiscal 2012-2013 and year to date, broken down by (i) province, (ii) region, (iii) appeals resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (iv) appeals not resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (v) appeals withdrawn before hearing by the claimant and by the department, (vi) appeals withdrawn at hearing by the claimant and by the department, (vii) appeals which were heard within 30 days of receipt of appeal notice, (viii) appeals summarily dismissed because the SST Member felt there was no reasonable chance of success, (ix) in how many cases referred in (b)(viii) did the claimant not submit additional information after being told that his or her case might be summarily dismissed, (x) how many initial requests by the claimant or the government to adjourn or postpone the hearing were received pursuant to section 11 of the SST Regulations, and how many were granted and denied, (xi) when is an appeal file considered in backlog, (xii) how many files were in backlog at the end of each month and fiscal year, (xiii) what are the reasons for any backlog, (xiv) what is being done about any backlog, (xv) what is the oldest appeal in backlog; (d) what is the number and percentage of total appeals concerning the Canada Pension Plan that were made to the SST General Division for fiscal 2012-2013 and year to date, broken down by (i) province, (ii) region, (iii) appeals resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (iv) appeals not resulting in an overturn of the Department’s original decision, (v) appeals withdrawn before hearing by the claimant and by the Department, (vi) appeals withdrawn at hearing by the claimant and by the Department, (vii) appeals which were heard within 30 days of receipt of appeal notice, (viii) appeals summarily dismissed because the SST Member felt there was no reasonable chance of success, (ix) in how many cases referred in (b)(viii) did the claimant not submit additional information after being told that his or her case might be summarily dismissed, (x) how many initial requests by the claimant or the government to adjourn or postpone the hearing were received pursuant to section 11 of the SST Regulations, and how many were granted and denied, (xi) when is an appeal file considered in backlog, (xii) how many files were in backlog at the end of each month and fiscal year, (xiii) what are the reasons for any backlog, (xiv) what is being done about any backlog, (xv) what is the oldest appeal in backlog; (e) what is the number and percentage of total appeals concerning Employment Insurance that were made to the SST Appeals Division for fiscal 2012-2013 and year to date, broken down by (i) province, (ii) region, (iii) appeals resulting in an overturn of the SST General Division’s decision, (iv) appeals not resulting in an overturn of the SST General Division’s decision, (v) how many appeals that were summarily dismissed by the SST General Division were appealed to the SST Appeal Division, (vi) how many judicial reviews of a decision rendered by the SST Appeal Division were brought before the Federal Court of Appeal, (vii) how many leave to appeal applications were granted and denied by the SST Appeal Division, (viii) how many of the denials in (vii) were appealed before the Federal Court; (f) what is the number and percentage of total appeals concerning Old Age Security that were made to the SST Appeals Division for fiscal 2012-2013 and year to date, broken down by (i) province, (ii) region, (iii) appeals resulting in an overturn of the SST General Division’s decision, (iv) appeals not resulting in an overturn of the SST General Division’s decision, (v) how many appeals that were summarily dismissed by the SST General Division were appealed to the SST Appeal Division, (vi) how many judicial reviews of a decision rendered by the SST Appeal Division were brought before the Federal Court of Appeal, (vii) how many leave to appeal applications were granted and denied by the SST Appeal Division, (viii) how many of the denials in (vii) were appealed before the Federal Court; (g) what is the number and percentage of total appeals concerning Canada Pension Plan that were made to the SST Appeals Division for fiscal 2012-2013 and year to date, broken down by (i) province, (ii) region, (iii) appeals resulting in an overturn of the SST General Division’s decision, (iv) appeals not resulting in an overturn of the SST General Division’s decision, (v) how many appeals that were summarily dismissed by the SST General Division were appealed to the SST Appeal Division, (vi) how many judicial reviews of a decision rendered by the SST Appeal Division were brought before the Federal Court of Appeal, (vii) how many leave to appeal applications were granted and denied by the SST Appeal Division, (viii) how many of the denials in (vii) were appealed before the Federal Court; (h) what is the set standard to hold a hearing once an appeal is filed by the claimant for the (i) prior tribunals, (ii) SST General Division, (iii) SST Appeals Division; (i) what are the results in achieving the standard in (h); (j) what is the average number of days to schedule a hearing from receipt of the appeal notice claimant for the (i) prior tribunals, (ii) SST General Division; (k) what is the annual cost of the prior tribunals for fiscal 2004-2005 to 2012-2013 broken down by (i) total cost, (ii) cost by most detailed cost category available; (l) what is the annual cost of SST for 2013-2014 and year to date broken down by (i) total cost, (ii) cost by most detailed cost category available, including division; (m) what is the number of prior tribunal members as of March 31 of each fiscal year from 2004-2005 to 2012-2013; (n) what is the expected and realized annual cost savings created by the SST in 2013-2014 and what is the reason for any discrepancy; (o) what is the expected and realized efficiency savings, created by the SST in 2013-2014 and what is the reason for any discrepancy; (p) what is the anticipated and actual cases convened by the SST by way of (i) written questions and answers, (ii) teleconference, (iii) video conference, (iv) personal appearance in 2013-2014 and, if there is any discrepancy, why; (q) what is the anticipated and actual percentage of total cases convened by the SST by way of (i) written questions and answers, (ii) teleconference, (iii) video conference, (iv) personal appearance in 2013-2014 and, if there is any discrepancy, why; (r) if there were no expectations for (p) and (q), why not, and why did the government develop the new proposed practice of written questions and answers, teleconference and video conference as opposed to in person hearings; (s) how many video-conferencing centres were (i) planned to be and (ii) were operational to deal with the expected caseload for the first year of the SST and the supporting rationale for the number; (t) if there was no rationale for (s) why wasn’t there one; (u) where were the prior tribunals (i) centre locations, (ii) regions served; (v) are there are currently SST video conferencing centres available to those same locations in (u) and if not, why not; (w) what were strategic and operational objectives set for the SST’s first year, (i) were they met, (ii) if not, why not, (iii) what impact is there on client service and cost to taxpayers versus the prior tribunals; (x) what were the specific required types of training for SST members in 2013-2014 broken down by (i) General Division, (ii) Appeals Division if applicable; (y) did all SST members receive the required training to date, and if not, why not; (z) what was the expected and actual amount of training (in hours, days or whatever the standard training units are) and the cost in 2013-2014 for (i) each SST member, (ii) all members; (aa) how many SST members were hired and actively performing their duties at the end of each month in 2013-2014 and year to date, broken down by division SST in general; (bb) how many SST members have resigned or been fired to date and why; (cc) what negative feedback or complaints has the SST received or government received about the SST from (i) its members, (ii) stakeholders, claimants and others regarding the operation and function of the SST since it began operating and, if so, what are the comments or the reference numbers of the internal files that contain that information; (dd) was any audit, evaluation, or review document prepared or conducted on the SST since it became operational and, if so, what was the date and the internal file or reference number associated with each; (ee) what is the expected ongoing cost and efficiency savings and the supporting rationale; (ff) if the government did not set specific targets or expectations referenced in (ee), why; and (gg) was any study or report done by the government to justify the creation of the SST and, if so, what are the date completed and any internal file or reference numbers associated with them?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 619--
Hon. Ralph Goodale:
     With regard to regulations published in the Canada Gazette since the introduction of the “One-for-One” rule, broken down by year: (a) how many regulations have been published; (b) for how many did the rule not apply; (c) how many were carved out from the rule; and (d) how many resulted in an equivalent reduction in regulations due to the rule?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 620--
Mr. Scott Simms:
     With regard to all aspects of the seal industry: what are the file numbers of all ministerial briefings, departmental correspondence or other government records since 2006, broken down by (i) minister or department, (ii) relevant file number, (iii) correspondence or file type, (iv) date, (v) purpose, (vi) origin, (vii) intended destination, (viii) other officials copied or involved, (ix) country or regions involved?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 621--
Mr. Ted Hsu:
     With regard to the Directory of Federal Real Property administered by the Real Property and Materiel Policy Directorate of the Treasury Board Secretariat: for all properties located in Kingston and the Islands, (a) broken down by custodian and property title, what is the value of these properties on the financial records of the department, agency or Crown corporation responsible; (b) broken down by custodian and property title, how many properties have currently been declared surplus, and how did these properties appear on the financial records of the department, agency or Crown corporation responsible (i) prior to having been declared surplus, (ii) after having been declared surplus; (c) broken down by custodian, property title and sale price, how many properties have been sold prior to having been declared surplus since 2006, and what was the value according to the financial records of the department, agency or Crown corporation responsible (i) prior to the sale, (ii) for each year from 2006 to 2014; (d) broken down by custodian, property title and sale price, how many properties have been sold after being declared surplus since 2006, and what was the value according to the financial records of the department, agency or Crown corporation responsible (i) prior to the sale, (ii) for each year from 2006 to 2014; and (e) broken down by custodian, property title and sale price, how many properties have been sold without having been declared surplus since 2006, and what was the value according to the financial records of the department, agency or Crown corporation responsible (i) prior to the sale, (ii) for each year from 2006 to 2014?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 622--
Mr. Massimo Pacetti:
     With regard to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC): since January 1, 2012, has the Prime Minister’s Office, The Privy Council Office, or the Minister of Public Safety’s Office issued directives or suggestions to (i) Senators or their offices, (ii) Members of Parliament or their offices, (iii) the Correctional Service of Canada or its members, (iv) the Royal Canadian Mounted Police or its members, (v) the Canada Border Service Agency or its members, in order to forbid or discourage them from (a) testifying at CRTC hearings; and (b) providing letters of support to the CRTC on applications or processes and, if so, what are the (i) names of the individuals or offices that issued such a directive or suggestion, (ii) dates when the directives or suggestions were issued, (iii) individuals or departments to whom the directives or suggestions were issued, (iv) details as to the content of the directives or suggestions?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 624--
Mr. Ted Hsu:
    With regard to high-speed Internet access in rural and Northern Canada: (a) concerning the funds announced in Digital Canada 150 in order to extend and enhance high-speed Internet services in rural and Northern areas, (i) has Howe Island, Ontario, been identified as an area of particular need or concern, (ii) specific to Howe Island, what measures are being undertaken to ensure that high-speed Internet services are available, (iii) how much money is earmarked for improving broadband services on Howe Island, (iv) how much money is earmarked for improving broadband services in the riding of Kingston and the Islands, (v) how much money is earmarked for improving broadband services in the riding of Lanark—Frontenac—Lennox and Addington, (vi) how much money is earmarked for improving broadband services in the riding of Leeds—Grenville, (vii) how much money is earmarked for improving broadband services in the riding of Prince Edward—Hastings, (viii) how much money has been spent improving broadband services on Howe Island, (ix) how much money has been spent improving broadband services in the riding of Kingston and the Islands, (x) how much money has been spent improving broadband services in the riding of Lanark—Frontenac—Lennox and Addington, (xi) how much money has been spent improving broadband services in the riding of Leeds—Grenville, (xii) how much money has been spent improving broadband services in the riding of Prince Edward—Hastings, (xiii) how much money is projected to be spent improving broadband services on Howe Island, (xiv) how much money is projected to be spent improving broadband services in the riding of Kingston and the Islands, (xv) how much money is projected to be spent improving broadband services in the riding of Lanark—Frontenac—Lennox and Addington, (xvi) how much money is projected to be spent improving broadband services in the riding of Leeds—Grenville, (xvii) how much money is projected to be spent improving broadband services in the riding of Prince Edward—Hastings, (xviii) what is the process by which these funds were or are to be allocated, (1) when was this process determined, (2) which individuals were consulted, (3) which organizations were consulted, (4) on what date was the process finalized, (5) on whose authority, (xix) what is the expected date for these funds to be made available, (xx) what is the expected date for these funds to be made available on Howe Island, (xxi) what is the projected timeline for the project on Howe Island, (xxii) what is the projected timeline for the project as a whole, (xxiii) what is the specific scope of the project, (xxiv) were bids solicited, (1) if yes, how was this process determined, (2) when was this process determined, (3) which individuals were consulted, (4) which organizations were consulted, (5) on what date was the process finalized, (6) on whose authority, (xxv) are bids expected to be solicited, (5) if yes, how was this process determined, (2) when was this process determined, (3) which individuals were consulted, (4) which organizations were consulted, (5) on what date was the process finalized, (6) on whose authority, (xxvi) how are the funds advertised, (xxvii) what is the expected impact of the project, (xxviii) what is the expected impact of the project on Howe Island specifically, (xxix) if no money is allocated to Howe Island, what steps should Howe Island residents take under the program to obtain high-speed Internet services; (b) with regard to the funds announced in Economic Action Plan 2014 in order to extend and enhance high-speed Internet services in rural and Northern areas, (i) has Howe Island, Ontario, been identified as an area of particular need or concern, (ii) specific to Howe Island, what measures are being undertaken to ensure that high-speed Internet services are available, (iii) how much money is earmarked for improving broadband services on Howe Island, (iv) how much money is earmarked for improving broadband services in the riding of Kingston and the Islands, (v) how much money is earmarked for improving broadband services in the riding of Lanark—Frontenac—Lennox and Addington, (vi) how much money is earmarked for improving broadband services in the riding of Leeds—Grenville, (vii) how much money is earmarked for improving broadband services in the riding of Prince Edward—Hastings, (viii) how much money has been spent improving broadband services on Howe Island, (ix) how much money has been spent improving broadband services in the riding of Kingston and the Islands, (x) how much money has been spent improving broadband services in the riding of Lanark—Frontenac—Lennox and Addington, (xi) how much money has been spent improving broadband services in the riding of Leeds—Grenville, (xii) how much money has been spent improving broadband services in the riding of Prince Edward—Hastings, (xiii) how much money is projected to be spent improving broadband services on Howe Island, (xiv) how much money is projected to be spent improving broadband services in the riding of Kingston and the Islands, (xv) how much money is projected to be spent improving broadband services in the riding of Lanark—Frontenac—Lennox and Addington, (xvi) how much money is projected to be spent improving broadband services in the riding of Leeds—Grenville, (xvii) how much money is projected to be spent improving broadband services in the riding of Prince Edward—Hastings, (xviii) what is the process by which these funds were or are to be allocated, (1) when was this process determined, (2) which individuals were consulted, (3) which organizations were consulted, (4) on what date was the process finalized, (5) on whose authority, (xix) what is the expected date for these funds to be made available, (xx) what is the expected date for these funds to be made available on Howe Island, (xxi) what is the projected timeline for the project on Howe Island, (xxii) what is the projected timeline for the project as a whole, (xxiii) what is the specific scope of the project, (xxiv) were bids solicited, (1) if yes, how was this process determined, (2) when was this process determined, (3) which individuals were consulted, (4) which organizations were consulted, (5) on what date was the process finalized, (6) on whose authority, (xxv) are bids expected to be solicited, (1) if yes, how was this process determined, (2) when was this process determined, (3) which individuals were consulted, (4) which organizations were consulted, (5) on what date was the process finalized, (6) on whose authority,(xxvi) how are the funds advertised, (xxvii) what is the expected impact of the project, (xxviii) what is the expected impact of the project on Howe Island specifically; and (c) with regard to the funds from the recently completed Broadband Canada program, (i) was Howe Island, Ontario, identified as an area of particular need or concern, (ii) specific to Howe Island, what measures were undertaken to ensure that high-speed Internet services are available, (iii) how much money has been spent improving broadband services on Howe Island, (iv) how much money has been spent improving broadband services in the riding of Kingston and the Islands, (v) how much money has been spent improving broadband services in the riding of Lanark—Frontenac—Lennox and Addington, (vi) how much money has been spent improving broadband services in the riding of Leeds—Grenville, (vii) how much money has been spent improving broadband services in the riding of Prince Edward—Hastings, (viii) what was the process by which these funds were or are to be allocated, (1) when was this process determined, (2) which individuals were consulted, (3) which organizations were consulted, (4) on what date was the process finalized, (5) on whose authority, (ix) what was the specific scope of the project, (x) were bids solicited, (1) if yes, how was this process determined, (2) when was this process determined, (3) which individuals were consulted, (4) which organizations were consulted, (5) on what date was the processed finalized, (6) on whose authority?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 625--
Mr. Ted Hsu:
    With regard to industrial policy related to defence procurement: (a) broken down by contractor, how many dollars have been contracted to businesses in the federal riding of Kingston and the Islands under the Industrial and Regional Benefit Policy since 2006; (b) broken down by contractor, how many person-years of employment have been contracted to businesses in the federal riding of Kingston and the Islands under the Industrial and Regional Benefits Policy since 2006; (c) broken down by contractor, what are all the projects completed in the federal riding of Kingston and the Islands under the Industrial and Regional Benefits Policy since 2006; (d) broken down by contractor, how many dollars have been contracted to businesses in the federal riding of Kingston and the Islands under the Industrial and Technological Benefits Policy since January 2014; (e) broken down by contractor, how many person-years of employment have been contracted to businesses in the federal riding of Kingston and the Islands under the Industrial and Technological Benefits Policy since January 2014; and (f) broken down by contractor, what are all the projects completed in the federal riding of Kingston and the Islands under the Industrial and Technological Benefits Policy since January 2014?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 626--
Ms. Chrystia Freeland:
     With regard to the administration of the Access to Information Act: for each institution subject to the Act, what are, for each year since 2006 inclusive, (i) the total number of requests received, (ii) the number of requests by institution that were subject to an extension notice, broken down by particular paragraph of subsection 9(1) of the Act, (iii) the reasons for the extension other than those indicated in subsection 9(1), specifying those other reasons?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 628--
Ms. Lysane Blanchette-Lamothe:
    With regard to the government’s announcement, in July 2013, to provide an additional 1300 places for the resettlement of those displaced by the Syrian Civil War by the end of 2014: for fiscal years 2010-2011 to 2013-2014 inclusive, (a) how many Syrian nationals whose refugee claims stem from the Syrian Civil War have been resettled in Canada, broken down by (i) fiscal year, (ii) country of residence at time of application, (iii) type of sponsorship (government or private) (iv) current place of residence in Canada; (b) how many applications for resettlement have been denied, broken down by reason for denial; (c) for both categories of sponsorship ,government and private, for Syrian nationals, beginning from the date that the case was referred to the Canadian Embassy by either the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) or the sponsoring organization, what was the average wait time for processing applications, broken down by (i) fiscal year for 2010-2011 to 2013-2014, (ii) country of residence at time of the submission of resettlement claim, (iii) type of sponsorship; (d) what was the average wait time for resettlement of approved resettlement applications for both categories of sponsorship, government and private, for Syrian nationals, broken down by (i) fiscal year for 2010-2011 to 2013-2014, (ii) country of residence at time of the submission of resettlement claim, (iii) type of sponsorship; (e) what is the total number of government-sponsored resettlement applications for Syrian nationals submitted by the UNHCR to Canada since 2011, broken down by (i) fiscal year for 2011 to 2014, (ii) current country of residence or country of residence at time of application, (iii) due cause for resettlement as defined by the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and the 1967 Additional Protocols; (f) what criteria is used by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) to prioritize the claims referred to in (e); (g) how many of the cases referred to in (e) did Canada request from UNHCR in 2013-2014 and how many cases was UNHCR able to refer; (h) how many of the cases referred to in (e) does the government plan to request in 2014-2015; (i) how many of the cases referred to in (e) does the government anticipate will come from UNHCR;(j) what is the total number of pending applications or applications under review for resettlement of Syrian nationals submitted by private sponsorship Agreement Holders, Groups of Five, Community sponsors, or individual private sponsors, broken down by (i) year for 2010-2011 to 2013-2014, (ii) type of sponsor, (iii) geographical location of sponsor in Canada, (iv) due cause for resettlement as defined by the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and the 1967 Additional Protocols, (v) current country of residence of candidates for resettlement; (k) how many Full Time Equivalent staff was allocated within CIC for processing of the government’s announced additional places for Syrian nationals in fiscal years 2011 to 2014 inclusive, for all categories of sponsorship (government or private), and what was the geographical distribution of these allocations; (l) what was the budget for processing all categories of resettlement claims for Syrian nationals from 2011 to 2014, broken down by (i) fiscal year for 2010-2011 to 2013-2014, (ii) processing centre; (m) how does CIC allocate applications for resettlement of Syrian nationals given the announced 1300 additional places for those displaced as a result of the Syrian Civil War; (n) how many places are prioritized for private sponsorship and for government sponsorship; (o) has the Office of the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration or CIC made any arrangements with (i) non-UNHCR partners,i.e. non-governmental organizations, including, but not limited to, the Norwegian Refugee Council and the Jesuit Refugee Services, (ii) international governmental organizations, including but not limited to, the International Society for the Red Cross/Red Crescent and the International Organization for Migration, (iii) with on the ground capacity in Syria or any other regional states including but not limited to Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, and Turkey, to help identify resettlement candidates or conduct Refugee Status Determination procedures for Syrian nationals for resettlement to Canada under the government’s announced 1300 additional places; (p) how were thespartners in (o) identified, (ii) what are the terms of reference for these partnerships; (q) are there any plans to expand to additional on- the- ground partners; and (r) has the Minister’s Office or the CIC began engage in three-way partnerships among the government of Canada, the UNHCR, and private sponsors who are sponsorship Agreement Holders (SAHs) to facilitate the arrival of Syrian refugees and is the government of Canada prepared to provide up to six months of income support through the Resettlement Assistance Program (RAP)?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 630--
Ms. Charmaine Borg:
     With regard to requests by government agencies to telecommunications service providers (TSPs) to provide information about customers' usage of communications devices and services: (a) between 2001 and 2013, how many such requests were made; (b) of the total referred to in (a), how many requests were made by the (i) RCMP, (ii) Canadian Security Intelligence Service, (iii) Competition Bureau, (iv) Canada Revenue Agency, (v) Canada Border Services Agency, (vi) Communications Security Establishment Canada; (c) for the requests referred to in (a), how many of each of the following types of information were requested, (i) geolocation of device, broken down by real-time and historical data, (ii) call detail records, as obtained by number recorders or by disclosure of stored data, (iii) text message content, (iv) voicemail, (v) cell tower logs, (vi) real-time interception of communications (i.e. wire-tapping), (vii) subscriber information, (viii) transmission data (e.g. duration of interaction, port numbers, communications routing data, etc.), (ix) data requests (e.g. web sites visited, IP address logs), (x) any other kinds of data requests pertaining to the operation of TSPs' networks and businesses, broken down by type; (d) for each of the request types referred to in (c), what are all of the data fields that are disclosed as part of responding to a request; (e) of the total referred to in (a), how many of the requests were made (i) for real-time disclosures, (ii) retroactively, for stored data, (iii) in exigent circumstances, (iv) in non-exigent circumstances, (v) subject to a court order; (f) of the total referred to in (a), (i) how many of the requests did TSPs fulfill, (ii) how many requests did they deny and for what reasons; (g) do the government agencies that request information from TSPs notify affected TSP subscribers that information pertaining to their telecommunications service has been requested or accessed by the government, (i) if so, how many subscribers are notified per year, (ii) by which government agencies; (h) for each type of request referred to in (c), broken down by agency, (i) how long is the information obtained by such requests retained by government agencies, (ii) what is the average time period for which government agencies request such information (e.g. 35 days of records), (iii) what is the average amount of time that TSPs are provided to fulfill such requests, (iv) what is the average number of subscribers who have the their information disclosed to government agencies; (i) what are the legal standards that agencies use to issue the requests for information referred to in (c); (j) how many times were the requests referred to in (c) based specifically on grounds of (i) terrorism, (ii) national security, (iii) foreign intelligence, (iv) child exploitation; (k) what is the maximum number of subscribers that TSPs are required by government agencies to monitor for each of the information types identified in (c); (l) has the government ever ordered (e.g. through ministerial authorization or a court order) the increase of one of the maximum numbers referred to in (k); (m) do TSPs ever refuse to comply with requests for information identified in (c) and, if so, (i) why were such requests refused, (ii) how do government agencies respond when a TSP refuses to comply; (n) between 2001 and 2013, did government agencies provide money or other forms of compensation to TSPs in exchange for the information referred to in (a) and, if so, (i) how much money have government agencies paid, (ii) are there different levels of compensation for exigent or non-exigent requests; (o) for the requests referred to in (a), how many users, accounts, IP addresses and individuals were subject to disclosure; (p) for the requests referred to in (a), how many were made without a warrant; (q) do the government agencies that request information from TSPs keep internal aggregate statistics on these type of requests and the kind of information requested; and (r) do the government agencies that request information from TSPs notify individuals when the law allows or after investigations are complete that their information has been requested or disclosed?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 636--
Hon. Geoff Regan:
     With regard to government telecommunications, what is the total amount of late-payment charges incurred in each month since January 2012 inclusive, in respect of: (a) cellular telephone service; and (b) service for all other wireless devices other than cellular telephones, broken down by (i) department or agency, (ii) service provider?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 638--
Hon. John McKay:
     With regard to the Act to promote the efficiency and adaptability of the Canadian economy by regulating certain activities that discourage reliance on electronic means of carrying out commercial activities, and to amend the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission Act, the Competition Act, the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act and the Telecommunications Act, S.C. 2010, c. 23: (a) what promotional and outreach activities has the government undertaken to inform businesses and organizations about their obligations under the Act; (b) what is the total cost of each activity; (c) what is the cost of each activity per province; (d) what is the estimated audience of each activity; (e) how many businesses or organizations are estimated to be impacted by the anti-spam law; and (f) what assessments has the government done about the readiness of organizations to comply with the law, and what are the file numbers, dates, titles, and results of those assessments?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 640--
Mr. Marc Garneau:
     With regard to the RCMP: for each recommendation made by Assistant Chief Judge Daniel R. Pahl in his report dated March 3, 2011, made under the Alberta Fatality Inquiries Act, concerning the shooting deaths of four members of the RCMP on March 3, 2005, (a) what measures, if any, has the RCMP or government taken in response to each recommendation; (b) when were those measures taken; and (c) if no measures have been taken in response to a particular recommendation, why not?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 642--
Hon. Carolyn Bennett:
     With regard to government funding, for each fiscal year since 2007-2008 inclusive: (a) what are the details of all grants, contributions, and loans to any organization, body, or group in Yukon, providing for each (i) the name of the recipient, (ii) the location of the recipient, indicating the municipality and the federal electoral district, (iii) the date, (iv) the amount, (v) the department or agency providing it, (vi) the program under which the grant, contribution, or loan was made, (vii) the nature or purpose; and (b) for each grant, contribution and loan identified in (a), was a press release issued to announce it and, if so, what is the (i) date, (ii) headline, (iii) file number of the press release?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 643--
Hon. Carolyn Bennett:
     With regard to government funding, for each fiscal year since 2007-2008 inclusive: (a) what are the details of all grants, contributions, and loans to any organization, body, or group in Nunavut, providing for each (i) the name of the recipient, (ii) the location of the recipient, indicating the municipality and the federal electoral district, (iii) the date, (iv) the amount, (v) the department or agency providing it, (vi) the program under which the grant, contribution, or loan was made, (vii) the nature or purpose; and (b) for each grant, contribution and loan identified in (a), was a press release issued to announce it and, if so, what is the (i) date, (ii) headline, (iii) file number of the press release?
    (Return tabled)
Question No. 644--
Hon. Carolyn Bennett:
    With regard to government funding, for each fiscal year since 2007-2008 inclusive: (a) what are the details of all grants, contributions, and loans to any organization, body, or group in the Northwest Territories, providing for each (i) the name of the recipient, (ii) the location of the recipient, indicating the municipality and the federal electoral district, (iii) the date, (iv) the amount, (v) the department or agency providing it, (vi) the program under which the grant, contribution, or loan was made, (vii) the nature or purpose; and (b) for each grant, contribution and loan identified in (a), was a press release issued to announce it and, if so, what is the (i) date, (ii) headline, (iii) file number of the press release?
    (Return tabled)

[English]

Mr. Tom Lukiwski:  
    Mr. Speaker, I ask that the remaining questions be allowed to stand.
The Speaker:  
    Is that agreed?
    Some hon. members: Agreed.

Request for Emergency Debate

[S. O. 52]
The Speaker:  
    The Chair has notice of two requests for emergency debate and I will hear them in the order in which I received the requests.
    I will go first to the hon. member for Laurier—Sainte-Marie.

[Translation]

Ebola Outbreak  

Ms. Hélène Laverdière (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, as we know, many crises are unfolding around the world, such as the ones in Iraq and Ukraine, for example. However, one potentially very serious crisis could affect the development and safety of Africa and perhaps even the health of Canadians. We must not forget this crisis.
    I am obviously speaking about the Ebola outbreak, an out-of-control epidemic raging in West Africa. There are more than 4,000 cases, but the figures could be much higher because not all cases have been reported. We know that Ebola kills more than half of the people infected and that there is no treatment for this terrible disease. It is urgent that this epidemic be contained as quickly as possible if we do not want to see the number of people infected increase exponentially. Resources on the ground are overwhelmed. Doctors Without Borders, which is perhaps the most active organization on the ground, has been forced to send home people suspected of having the disease. When these people return home, they risk infecting many others.
    Dr. Liu, the president of Doctors Without Borders, said that it is our historic responsibility to act. This is urgent. We must act now to ensure that this does not turn into an even greater problem in the very near future. The situation is getting worse with every passing day. Therefore, a debate on this matter in the House of Commons is urgently needed. If we hold the debate tomorrow, my colleagues may not have enough time to prepare to work on this important issue. However, the longer we wait, the more serious the problem will become. There is talk at this time of an exponential increase. Every day counts.
    Therefore, Mr. Speaker, I urge you to grant this emergency debate so that we can all work together and see what Canada can do.

[English]

The Speaker:  
    The Chair also has a notice of a request for an emergency debate from the hon. member for Westmount—Ville-Marie.

[Translation]

Iraq  

Mr. Marc Garneau (Westmount—Ville-Marie, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, I rise in the House today to ask you to hold an emergency debate on Canada's military role in Iraq.
    As you know, last week the Prime Minister announced that Canada would be sending a few dozen special operations forces soldiers to Iraq to support the Kurdish army in the country's north. The soldiers are there in an advisory capacity and will remain behind the front lines. The forces' mission will be reassessed after 30 days.

[English]

    Engaging our country in a military mission should be the subject of debate in Parliament, particularly given the fact that the Prime Minister has announced plans for it and remains short on detail and, most important, open ended. MPs should have the opportunity to express themselves on this very serious matter. Many questions remain to be answered.

  (1535)  

[Translation]

    I hope that you will grant my request and that we can hold this emergency debate as soon as possible.

[English]

Speaker's Ruling  

The Speaker:  
    I thank both hon. members for raising these matters and I am inclined to grant an emergency debate on both subjects.
     Given that the hon. member for Laurier—Sainte-Marie had her request in first, I will schedule hers for tonight, and I will schedule the emergency debate for the hon. member for Westmount—Ville-Marie for tomorrow evening following private members' business.

[Translation]

Privilege

Time Allocation Motion  

[Privilege]
Ms. Elizabeth May (Saanich—Gulf Islands, GP):  
    Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise today on this question of privilege about closure.

[English]

    I am rising at my first opportunity on this question of privilege, given that between the Speech from the Throne in October and when we adjourned June 20, there had been 21 occasions on which closure of debate occurred, and I maintain that the exercise of my rights and the rights of my colleagues in this place have been obstructed, undermined and impeded by the unprecedented use of time allocations in the second session of the 41st Parliament.
    Mr. Speaker, in presenting this fairly legal argument to you, I propose to leave out page numbers and citations because I have prepared a written version of this for your office and I hope that will be acceptable to you, that I skip page numbers in this presentation. Hansard may not have the numbers of the debates, but I hope there is enough context so people can find them.
    I belive this excessive use of what is often called “guillotine measures” is a violation of the rights of all members of Parliament, but I would like to stress that there is a disproportionate impact on members such as me who are within either smaller parties, that is less than 12 members, or who sit actually as independents, because in the roster of recognizing people in their speaker slot, quite often those of us in the smaller parties or independents simply never get to speak to the bills at all.
     My question, Mr. Speaker, bears directly on what your predecessor said in this place on April 27, 2010. He said, “...the fundamental right of the House of Commons to hold the government to account for its actions is an indisputable privilege and in fact an obligation”.
    In the autumn of 2011, in a ruling concerning the member for Mount Royal, Mr. Speaker, you yourself said that to constitute a prima facie case in regard to matters of obstruction, interference, molestation or intimidation, you need to “...assess whether or not the member's ability to fulfill his parliamentary [activities] has been undermined”. At that moment in the same Debates, you had the occasion to reflect on “...the Chair's primordial concern for the preservation of the privileges of all members,...” and you added, “As your Speaker, one of my principal responsibilities is to ensure that the rights and privileges of members are safeguarded, and this is a responsibility I take very seriously”.
    I now have occasion to turn to other words that will guide us in this matter. From the Supreme Court of Canada in the Vaid decision, in the words of Mr. Justice Binnie, speaking for the court, he outlined the scope of parliamentary responsibility and parliamentary privilege for the management of employees and said, “Parliamentary privilege is defined by the degree of autonomy necessary to perform Parliament’s constitutional function”. He went on to say at paragraph 41 of that Supreme Court of Canada judgment:
    Similarly, Maingot defines privilege in part as “the necessary immunity that the law provides for Members of Parliament, and for Members of the legislatures of each of the ten provinces and two territories, in order for these legislators to do their legislative work”.
    I would repeat and emphasize that, because although the Vaid decision was on a different fact set, Mr. Justice Binnie spoke to our core responsibility as parliamentarians when he said that we must be able, as legislators, to do our legislative work.
    Mr. Justice Binnie continued in the Vaid decision to say:
    To the question “necessary in relation to what?”, therefore, the answer is necessary to protect legislators in the discharge of their legislative and deliberative functions, and the legislative assembly’s work in holding the government to account for the conduct of the country’s business. To the same effect, see R. Marleau and C. Montpetit...where privilege is defined as “the rights and immunities that are deemed necessary for the House of Commons, as an institution, and its Members, as representatives of the electorate, to fulfill their functions”.
    Mr. Justice Binnie went on to find further references in support of these principles from Bourinot's Parliamentary Procedure and Practice in the Dominion of Canada.

  (1540)  

    These are fundamental points. The purpose of us being here as parliamentarians is to hold the government to account. It is obvious that no legislative assembly would be able to discharge its duties with efficiency or to assure its independence and dignity unless it had adequate powers to protect itself, its members, and its officials in the exercise of these functions.
    Finally, Mr. Justice Binnie—again, for the court—said at paragraph 62, on the subject of parliamentary functions in ruling that some employees would be covered by privilege, that coverage existed only if a connection were established between the category of employees and the exercise by the House of its functions as a legislative and deliberative body, including its role in holding the government to account.
    As I said earlier, this approach was supported by your immediate predecessor. In a December 10, 2009 ruling, the Speaker of the House, the Hon. Peter Milliken, said that one of his principle duties was to safeguard the rights and privileges of members, and of the House, including the fundamental right of the House of Commons to hold the government to account for its actions, which is an indisputable privilege, and in fact an obligation.
    It is therefore a fundamental principle of Westminster parliamentary democracy that the most important role of members of Parliament, and in fact a constitutional right and responsibility for us as members, is to hold the government to account.
    The events in this House that we witnessed before we adjourned on June 20, 2014, clearly demonstrate that the House and its members have been deprived of fulfilling constitutional rights, our privilege, and our obligation to hold the government to account, because of the imposition of intemperate and unrestrained guillotine measures in reference to a number of bills. Over 21 times, closure has been used.
    It is only in the interest of time that I am going to read out the numbers of the bills and not their full description. Bill C-2, Bill C-4, Bill C-6, Bill C-7, Bill C-13, Bill C-18, Bill C-20, Bill C-22, Bill C-23, Bill C-24, Bill C-25, Bill C-27, Bill C-31, Bill C-32, Bill C-33, and Bill C-36 were all instances where closure of debate was used.
     In many of the instances I just read out, and in the written argument I have presented, closure of debate occurred at second reading, again at report stage, and again at third reading. The limitation of debate was extreme.
    A close examination of the guillotine measures imposed by the government demonstrate that the citizens of Canada have been unable to have their elected representatives adequately debate the various and complex issues central to these bills in order to hold the government to account. Members of Parliament have been deprived and prevented from adequately debating these measures, through 21 separate motions for time allocation in this session alone. It undermines our ability to perform our parliamentary duties.
    In particular, I want to again highlight the effect that the guillotine motions have on my ability as a representative of a smaller party, the Green Party. We do not have 12 seats in the House as yet, and as a result we are in the last roster to be recognized once all other parties have spoken numerous times. Quite often, there is not an opportunity for members in my position, nor for independent members of Parliament, to be able to properly represent our constituents.
    Again, I should not have to repeat this. Certainly you, Mr. Speaker, are aware that in protecting our rights, as you must as Speaker, that in this place we are all equals, regardless of how large our parties are. As voters in Canada are all equal, so too do I, as a member of Parliament, have an equal right and responsibility to represent the concerns of my constituents in this place, which are equal to any other member in this place.
    As speaking time that is allotted to members of small parties and independents is placed late in the debates, we quite often are not able to address these measures in the House. This would be fair if we always reached the point in the debate where independents were recognized, but that does not happen with closure of debates. My constituents are deprived of their right to have their concerns adequately voiced in the House.

  (1545)  

    Political parties are not even referenced in our constitution, and I regard the excessive power of political parties over processes in this place, in general, to deprive constituents of equal representation in the House of Commons. However, under the circumstances, the additional closure on debate particularly disadvantages those constituents whose members of Parliament are not with one of the larger parties.
    Mr. Speaker, in the autumn of 2011, in your ruling considering the member for Mount Royal and his question of privilege, you said that one of your responsibilities that you take very seriously is to ensure that the rights and privileges of members are safeguarded. The principal right of the House and its members, and their privilege, is to hold the government to account. In fact, it is an obligation, according to your immediate predecessor.
    In order to hold the government to account, we require the ability and the freedom to speak in the House without being trammelled and without measures that undermine the member's ability to fulfill his or her parliamentary function. As a British joint committee report pointed out, without this protection, members would be handicapped in performing their parliamentary duty, and the authority of Parliament itself in confronting the executive and as a forum for expressing the anxieties of citizens would be correspondingly diminished.
    To hold the government to account is the raison d'être of Parliament. It is not only a right and privilege of members and of this House, but a duty of Parliament and its members to hold the government to account for the conduct of the nation's business. Holding the government to account is the essence of why we are here. It is a constitutional function. In the words of the marketers, it is “job one”.
    Our constitutional duty requires us to exercise our right and privilege, to study legislation, and to hold the government to account by means of raising a question of privilege. This privilege has been denied to us because of the consistent and immoderate use of the guillotine in regard to 21 instances of time allocation, in this session alone.
     This use of time allocation, as you know, Mr. Speaker, is unprecedented in the history of Canada, and infringes on your duty as Speaker to protect our rights and privileges as members. As you have said many times, that is your responsibility and you take it very seriously. However, these closure motions undermine your role and your duty to protect us. Therefore, it diminishes the role of Speaker, as honoured from time immemorial.
     In fact, you expressed it, Mr. Speaker, in debates in the autumn of 2011, at page 4396, when you had occasion to reflect on “the Chair's primordial concern for the preservation of the privileges of all members..”, and when you added, “As your Speaker, one of my principal responsibilities is to ensure that the rights and privileges of members are safeguarded, and this is a responsibility I take very seriously”.
    Denying the members' rights and privileges to hold the government to account is an unacceptable and unparliamentary diminishment of both the raison d'être of Parliament and of the Speaker's function and role in protecting the privileges of all members of this House.
    In conclusion, I submit to you, Mr. Speaker, that the intemperate and unrestrained use of time allocation by this government constitutes a prima facie breach of privilege of all members of this House, especially those who are independents or, such as myself, representatives of one of the parties with fewer than 12 members.
    Mr. Speaker, I appreciate your consideration in this matter. I hope you will find in favour of this question of privilege, that this is a prima facie breach of the privileges and rights of all members.

  (1550)  

Hon. Peter Van Loan (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, I would like to start by pointing out that there was some confusion in my friend's address. There was a sort of blurring of the lines between closure and time allocation. They were referred to as one and the same thing, but as we know, they are two entirely different devices.
    Time allocation and closure exist under different headings in our Standing Orders, and they are not the same. However, much of what the member casually referred to as closure is in fact motions for time allocation.
    The two should not be confused, as they were in her argument. It is important for all those who are listening to be aware of that and to understand that there has been some confusion in the arguments that were laid out on that basis.
    While I disagree with the hon. member's question of privilege, I do want to express my appreciation for the advance notice that she provided. It has given an opportunity to provide some research and to share it with you, Mr. Speaker.
    What is interesting is that this is a point of privilege that suggests that the government, in following exactly the letter of the law and rules that are laid out before us in the Standing Orders that have been adopted in this very House, has somehow offended the privileges of individual members. It is quite clear from the outset that in following the rules, and in following them exactly, we cannot in any way be offending the privileges of members. It is the members of this House themselves who have set those rules for the conduct of this chamber. The rules have endured for many years in the form that we are dealing with today in this motion for privilege.
    I do appreciate the member's abundant comments and quotes from Mr. Justice Binnie, for whom I have a high regard. They are all very noteworthy, but I do not see that they bear any relevance to the actual question at hand of the use of time allocation. Good words that they might be, they were not trenching upon the issue in any way whatsoever.
    However, we do have ample guidance. For example, page 669 of House of Commons Procedure and Practice is quite clear. It says:
...the Speaker has ruled that the Chair possesses no discretionary authority to refuse to put a motion of time allocation if all the procedural exigencies have been observed.
    That tells us straight out that simply using the rules as written, and following them, is appropriate.
    On March 1, 2001, at page 1415 of the Debates, Deputy Speaker Bob Kilger ruled on a question of privilege concerning the former Liberal government's use of time allocation. He said of the matter then before the Chair:
    In the case which gave rise to the point which I am addressing, there has been no suggestion that the government in any way deviated from the procedure laid out in the standing orders. I do not feel, under those circumstances, that there are any grounds whatsoever which would lead the Chair to intervene. The Chair wishes to be very clear on this point. The rules and practices established by this House with respect to time allocation leave the Speaker with no alternative in this matter.
    Simply put, the rules are the rules.
    The Chair then quoted Mr. Speaker Fraser's March 31, 1993 ruling, at page 17861 of the Debates:
    I have to advise the House that the rule is clear. It is within the government's discretion to use it. I cannot find any lawful way that I can exercise a discretion which would unilaterally break a very specific rule.
    Once again, the rules are the rules, and following them is entirely appropriate.
    Going back to Deputy Speaker Kilger's ruling, before dismissing the question of privilege under consideration, he said:
    Our system has always been one which functions on the basis of rules established by the House itself. However, under our current standing orders, it would be highly inappropriate for the Chair to take unilateral action on issues already provided for in the standing orders. Where the standing orders give the Speaker some discretion, then it is the Speaker's responsibility to be guided accordingly; where no such guidance is provided, no such action can be taken. It is certainly not up to the Chair to establish a timetable for the business of the House.

    It is by its rules and not by the authority of the Speaker that the House protects itself from excesses, both on the government side and on that of the opposition. The Speaker's role is to judge each case as it arises, fairly and objectively, and in so doing, to ensure that those rules are applied as the House intended.
    It is quite clear that adhering to the letter of our Standing Orders, the rules which we adopt to govern our conduct, can hardly form the basis of a prima facie case of privilege.
    However, as I understand the grievance of the hon. member for Saanich—Gulf Islands, she is principally concerned about having the opportunity to participate more often in debate. Generally speaking, she questions the overall amount of time budgeted for debates for government legislation.

  (1555)  

    Mr. Speaker, should you find that argument appealing and wish to perhaps show some courage and disagree with all previous Speakers, decide that it is your role as Speaker to unilaterally review our rules, change them and make those kinds of amendments, I would provide you with some statistics as guidance for that policy argument that you should ignore the rules, if you want to take that courageous stand on the basis of policy. That is, a comparison of the amount of time spent debating comparable legislation in our present Parliament with the current parliament in Westminster, which of course is our parent Parliament, if you will, whose rules we have followed the path of. Here is what it reveals.
    Contrary to the arguments of many in the opposition and media pundits, we actually have more extensive debate here than ever occurs in the British parliament.
    For example, the average Canadian government bill in this Parliament, or since the last election, is debated at second reading for almost three sitting days, or 2.74 days, which is the average number. To compare with Britain, instead of three days at second reading, a typical bill in that current parliament since the last election is debated about one day, or just over that at 1.16 days. Therefore, we have almost three times as much debate on average for each bill in the Canadian Parliament as does the British parliament.
    At report stage, the comparison is even more dramatic. Our average is 1.41 sitting days in Canada and in Britain it is 5.8 hours, not days, which is less than a full sitting day, for consideration. Then at third reading, the difference is even more stark where in Canada we spend on average 1.55 sitting days on third reading of a bill while the House of Commons of the mother parliament can deal with third reading on average in 41 minutes. That is 41 minutes compared with our over one and a half sitting days at third reading.
    This tells you, Mr. Speaker, that notwithstanding the complaints and carping of the opposition, we actually have more ample debate here than they do in the British House of Commons.
    The opposition says that we are shortening debate. No, we are actually a real talk shop compared with what they do across the ocean. Once more, this does not reflect the individual members' of Parliament right to speak. We have only 308 members, but their 650 MPs can get the same amount of work done in well less than half the time because they are not quite such a talk shop. I guess they are a little more efficient. Perhaps they have a culture that actually focuses on getting things done as our government seeks to do.
    Whatever the case, one can see clearly that the government's use of time allocation here is not about shutting down debate. It is not about cutting short the amount of time of debate provided members. It is in fact exactly what I have said it is from the start. Time allocation exists and is used by us as a scheduling device to create certainty in debate so that people know when a debate will conclude, and members can plan to vote and know when those votes will occur.
    I will quote from Beauchesne's Parliamentary Rules and Forms, citation 533, which says exactly the same thing. I have quoted from it before.
    Time allocation is a device for planning the use of time during the various stages of consideration of a bill rather than bringing the debate to an immediate conclusion.
    Of course, that is the difference between time allocation and closure.
    We have approached time allocation as a tool for the orderly and predictable management of the legislative agenda. Those statistics I offered clearly demonstrate that the time we propose for consideration of a bill is adequate and quite generous. In fact, I know that there have been occasions where the opposition have complained in this place that we have allocated more time than is necessary to debate a bill.
     More pointedly though, the hon. member for Saanich—Gulf Islands I think raises the disappointing argument about the number of speeches that she can personally give in the House. With respect to the actual act of a member of Parliament speaking in the House, as we all know, speaking turns are done on the principle of catching the Speaker's eye. The convention of catching the Speaker's eye is described at page 318 of O'Brien and Bosc:
    No Member may speak in the House until called upon or recognized by the Speaker; any Member so recognized may speak during debate, questions and comments periods, Question Period, and other proceedings of the House. Various conventions and informal arrangements exist to encourage the participation of all parties in debate; nevertheless, the decision as to who may speak is ultimately the Speaker’s.
    That point is echoed at citation 461 and 462 of Beauchesne's.

  (1600)  

    Therefore, what we have in this question of privilege is really an implicit criticism, Mr. Speaker, of your conduct rather than that of the government. As you said in your own ruling of April 23, 2013, at page 15798 of Debates:
...the need to “catch the Speaker’s eye”, as it is called, continues to underpin the Chair’s authority in this respect.

    Members are free, for instance, to seek the floor under questions and comments at any time to make their views known. They are also free at any time to seek the floor to intervene in debate itself on a bill or motion before the House. Ultimately, it is up to each individual member to decide how frequently he or she wishes to seek the floor, knowing that being recognized by the Speaker is not always a guaranteed proposition.

    The right to seek the floor at any time is the right of each individual member of Parliament and is not dependent on any other member of Parliament.
    The right of the hon. member for Saanich—Gulf Islands to seek the floor in debate does not depend on any other member, not even me, as government House leader. Indeed, Mr. Speaker, the conclusion of your April 23, 2013, ruling offers clear advice to the hon. member for Saanich—Gulf Islands. I will quote you again, Mr. Speaker:
    Were the Chair to be faced with choices of which member to recognize at any given time, then of course the Chair would exercise its discretion.... If members want to be recognized, they will have to actively demonstrate that they wish to participate. They have to rise in their places and seek the floor.
    Perhaps the hon. member will be cheered by the fact that the growing rates of independent members, thanks to the continued loss of MPs from the New Democratic caucus, means that the proportional debate rotation used as guidance by the Chair will see sooner and more frequent speaking opportunities for members not belonging to recognized parties.
    In closing, Mr. Speaker, I think you are on very solid ground to dismiss this question of privilege without the need to reserve your decision.
Mr. Peter Julian (Burnaby—New Westminster, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, I would like to welcome you back to Parliament, as well as the government House leader, the member for Saanich—Gulf Islands, and all other members of Parliament.
    This is an important issue and I am rising in support of the question of privilege raised by the member for Saanich—Gulf Islands. This is an issue that has been raised before. I want to flag at the outset that O'Brien and Bosc, which is our bible, as we know, describes time allocation as allowing for specific lengths of time to be set aside for the consideration of one or more stages of a public bill. The term “time allocation” suggests primarily the idea of time management, but the government may use a motion to allocate time as a guillotine.
    As we know, we have had a reference from the government House leader saying that time allocation is somewhat different from closure. He is right, technically, but as we know, in both cases we are talking about the use of time by the government as a guillotine. That is the point the member for Saanich—Gulf Islands has raised and it is a valid point to be considered as you look at her question of privilege, Mr. Speaker.
    It is true that the government has used both time allocation and closure as a guillotine. In this Parliament alone—this is the sad record of the government—it has shut down debate 75 times. That is more than any other government in Canadian history.

[Translation]

    Seventy-five times, Mr. Speaker, that is incredible. Clearly, this is an attempt to hamstring the democratic process.

[English]

    I want to quote somebody who should have a lot of credibility with the government, and that is the Minister of Employment and Social Development and Minister for Multiculturalism. He said in the House, back in 2002, the following:
    I am displeased that the bill represents the 75th time that the government has invoked closure or time allocation since it came to power in 1993, abusing that very significant power to limit and shut down debate in this place more than any other government in Canadian history.

    This is parliament. Parliament is derived from the French word “parler” which means to speak. It is the place where the representatives of the common people speak to issues that affect the common good.

    For the government to, for the 75th time, prohibit members from speaking on behalf of their constituents and to the national interest on matters of grave concern, such as the budget implementation bill, is yet more unfortunate evidence of the government's growing arrogance and contempt for our conventions of parliamentary democracy.
    That was said by the Minister of Employment and Social Development and Minister for Multiculturalism. I believe that intervention from the government side obviously raises the major concerns that the membr for Saanich—Gulf Islands has raised. I should add that when the Minister for Multiculturalism raised the 75th time back in 2002, that was over four mandates and four Parliaments. We are talking about 75 closure and time allocation motions in one single Parliament, an abuse and contempt of democracy that we have simply never before seen in Canadian history.
    Many times it is Conservative MPs who have their rights thrown aside by the extraordinary use of time allocation and closure. In fact, on most bills now, as we know, there is only a handful of Conservative members who even get up to speak, which means their constituents in their ridings are deprived of the ability to express themselves on government legislation and there are many Conservative MPs who simply have not been able to speak on a single government bill.

  (1605)  

[Translation]

    Mr. Speaker, O'Brien and Bosc quote Maingot on the subject of questions of privilege. I know that the member for Saanich—Gulf Islands takes this issue very seriously. Maingot said:
    The purpose of raising matters of “privilege” in either House of Parliament is to maintain the respect and credibility due to and required of each House in respect of these privileges, to uphold its powers, and to enforce the enjoyment of the privileges of its Members. A genuine question of privilege is therefore a serious matter not to be reckoned with lightly and accordingly ought to be rare, and thus rarely raised in the House of Commons.

[English]

    As the House knows, in November 2011, the NDP brought forward a motion that aimed to provide the Speaker with a level of discretion in granting the government leave to introduce closure or time allocation on legislation before the House, preventing the government from abusing it as it certainly has over the last year and certainly has over the course of this Parliament in an unprecedented way. The Conservatives at that time rejected that proposal.
    That was not the opinion of the current Prime Minister on November 26, 1996, here in the House of Commons, when he said:
    In my view, the procedure of using time allocation for electoral law, doing it quickly and without the consent of the other political parties, is the kind of dangerous application of electoral practices that we are more likely to find in third world countries.
    I would also like to point out a report, which was cited by O'Brien and Bosc, prepared by Yvon Pelletier, a parliamentary intern from 1999-2000. The article was based on his research essay, which was awarded the Alf Hales Prize as the best paper submitted by the 1999 and 2000 interns. He spoke of time allocation in the House of Commons:
    Accordingly, it became necessary to set up mechanisms to manage the time allocated to debate so that a final decision could be made in a reasonable period of time. However, a balance had to be struck between the right to speak for an appropriate length of time and Parliament's right to reach decisions.

[Translation]

    The only notable change to that provision was made in the fall of 1989, when the House of Commons renumbered its standing orders. Time allocation is now covered in Standing Order 78. Since the governing party has shown no desire to change this standing order, which is very much in its favour, the use of time allocation continues to be this government's preferred time management strategy. Unless changes are made to this standing order, time allocation will continue to be the strategy of choice for muzzling the opposition.
    That is why we are rising in the House to support the question of privilege raised by the member for Saanich—Gulf Islands.
    What we are seeing here is unprecedented: 75 times in a single Parliament. This is an abuse of time allocation and closure. There is no doubt about it. This violates the rights of MPs, both in opposition and in government, to rise in the House to speak and represent their constituents.
    That is why we are rising to support this question of privilege.

[English]

The Speaker:  
    I thank hon. members for their contributions and will come back to the House with a decision in due course.

Government Orders

[Government Orders]

Energy Safety and Security Act

    The House proceeded to the consideration of Bill C-22, An Act respecting Canada's offshore oil and gas operations, enacting the Nuclear Liability and Compensation Act, repealing the Nuclear Liability Act and making consequential amendments to other Acts, as reported (with amendments) from the committee.

[English]

Speaker's Ruling 

The Speaker:  
    There is one motion in amendment standing on the notice paper for the report stage of Bill C-22. The sponsor of the motion as well as the two members who had submitted an identical notice have indicated to the Chair that they do not wish to proceed with the motion. Therefore, the House will now proceed without debate to the putting of the question on the motion to concur in the bill at report stage.

  (1610)  

Hon. Greg Rickford (Minister of Natural Resources, CPC)  
     moved that the bill be concurred in.
The Speaker:  
    Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?
    Some hon. members: Agreed.
    An hon. member: On division.

    Motion agreed to

    The Speaker: When shall the bill be read a third time? By leave, now?
    Some hon. members: Agreed.
Hon. Greg Rickford:  
    moved that the bill be read a third time and passed.
    He said: Mr. Speaker, I want to welcome all members of this place back, and in addition, the new members.
    It is with great pleasure that I rise in the House today to discuss how our government has taken action to strengthen energy safety and security in Canada's offshore and nuclear energy industries.

[Translation]

    The health and safety of Canadians and of our environment is of the utmost importance to our government.

[English]

    In the Speech from the Throne we pledged that no resource development would proceed unless safe for Canadians and safe for the environment. In other words, no development would proceed unless rigorous environmental protection and health and safety measures were in place. That is the goal of Bill C-22. The legislation builds on Canada's already strong record of safety and security in the nuclear and offshore industries, and it will ensure that Canada's thriving energy sector will continue to grow.
    One of the key features of the energy safety and security legislation is the $1-billion protection it provides to Canadians. The legislation would raise the absolute liability limits in both offshore and nuclear sectors to $1 billion. These changes would ensure that Canada continues to have world-class regulatory regimes. As hon. members know, Canada's liability regime is founded on the polluter pays principle. With Bill C-22, we are enshrining this principle into legislation for the first time. The bottom line is that Canadian taxpayers and the Government of Canada will not have to foot the bill in the unlikely, perhaps rare, event of a spill.

[Translation]

    The Canadian offshore oil and gas industry is booming and provides many economic benefits for Canada's Atlantic region, including thousands of jobs and billions of dollars in revenue.

[English]

    From an economic perspective, activities in the Newfoundland and Labrador offshore accounted for about 28% of the nominal provincial gross domestic product in 2012. In the Nova Scotia offshore, they represented about 3% of the provincial GDP.
    Canada collected an impressive $8.4 billion in royalties from the Newfoundland and Labrador offshore and $2 billion from the Nova Scotia offshore and transferred those funds to these respective provincial governments. I am sure they appreciated that. Offshore development is currently one of the fastest growing sectors in Canada. Right now there are five major projects under way in the Atlantic offshore, another project under construction with initial production slated for 2017, a major prospect in the Flemish Pass, and several major exploration projects under way.
    Atlantic Canada currently produces about 200,000 barrels of oil a day. That is about 15% of Canada's conventional crude oil production and seven million cubic litres a day of natural gas. Put another way, that is enough to heat about 950,000 Canadian homes for one year.

[Translation]

    There are still opportunities for the oil and gas industry. Our country has the resources to help meet international demand for energy, which is expected to increase by one-third by 2035.

[English]

    Most of that growth in demand is coming from emerging economies in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. Few countries are developing natural resources on the scale and at the pace of Canada. There are hundreds of major natural resource projects under construction or planned for the next 10 years. These are worth approximately $675 billion in investment.
    The Government of Canada shares the management of the offshore with the governments of Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador. Companies operating in Canada's offshore have an excellent track record. Every stage of offshore oil and gas project development, from exploration to production, is managed and regulated by the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board or the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board.

  (1615)  

    These boards ensure that operators exercise due diligence to prevent spills in Canada's offshore. With this in mind, we work closely with these two provinces to update and expand legislation to ensure that Canada's offshore regime remains world class.
    Canada's environmental safety record in the Atlantic offshore, for example, is already very strong. In fact, some 73 million barrels of oil are produced in the region each year, without a significant spill since production began in 1997. Our plan for responsible resource development strengthens environmental protection by focusing resources on the review of major projects. We have put forward new measures, new fines, to punish those who would break Canada's rigorous environmental protections. We have also increased the number of inspections and comprehensive audits of federally regulated pipelines.
    What is more, we are bringing in tough new measures for oil tankers to ensure the safe transport of energy resources through our waterways. These measures include the introduction of the safeguarding Canada's seas and skies act and the formation of an expert tanker safety regime and proposed ways to strengthen it. Building on these measures with Bill C-22, our government is taking tangible steps to make our robust liability regime and its great record even stronger.
    Our proposed changes focus on four key areas: prevention, response, accountability, and transparency. They will help further strengthen safety and security to prevent incidents and ensure a swift response in the rare or unlikely event of a spill. As I mentioned, our liability regime is founded on the polluter pays principle.
    First, we are proposing to enshrine this principle in the legislation and to maintain unlimited liability when an operator is found to be at fault. This will clearly establish that polluters will be held accountable.
    Second, we will ensure that the liability limits reflect modern standards. Under the current regime, offshore operators in the Atlantic have absolute liability of $30 million. Given the value of this resource and the boom currently under way in offshore exploration and production, most members, I think, can agree that this amount needs to be raised. That is why we are increasing the benchmark to $1 billion with this bill. In this way, Canada's benchmark remains among the highest in the world.
    In addition to increasing the absolute liability in the Atlantic from $30 million to $1 billion, our government is also increasing the absolute liability in the Arctic from $40 million to $1 billion. Fault or negligence does not have to be proven for operators to be responsible for that amount of damage or compensation. I think that is important.
    Let us move to a discussion, then, of financial capacity.

[Translation]

    We must also ensure that companies operating offshore have the financial capacity to meet their obligations.

[English]

    Before any offshore drilling or production can take place, companies have to prove that they can cover the financial liabilities and damages that may result from a spill. Currently the financial capacity requirements range from $250 million to $500 million, with $30 million to be held in trust for working in the Atlantic offshore and $40 million for working in the Arctic offshore. This deposit is held in trust by the offshore regulator as a letter of credit, guarantee, or bond. These amounts will increase to $1 billion for financial capacity and $100 million to be held in trust per offshore project. These are significant resources that I think go a long way to help build public confidence.
    Furthermore, we are taking steps to create greater transparency in the offshore industry. With this in mind, we are making emergency planning, environmental plans, and other documents filed with regulators available to the general public. This will ensure that operators make protecting Canadians and the environment their first priority.
    These are just some of the ways we are protecting Canadian taxpayers by ensuring that Canada has one of the strongest offshore liability regimes in the world.

  (1620)  

    In fact, with the passage of this legislation, Canada's offshore liability will be among the most stringent in the world. We will ensure that only those companies with an interest in operating safely and securely and with the financial wherewithal to address any problems will be able to comply.
    I would like to spend some time talking about nuclear liability, the second piece of this act.
    Canada's nuclear industry is also a critical component of our energy resource mix. This industry accounts for 30,000 high-quality jobs and helps make Canada's electricity supply among the cleanest in the world.

[Translation]

    Electricity from nuclear energy powers our homes, our businesses, our cities and even our cars. In fact, nuclear energy is helping reduce Canada's greenhouse gas emissions by 89 million tonnes a year, which is the equivalent of over 18 million cars.

[English]

    Our country is recognized the world over as a leader in nuclear energy for a number of important reasons. For one, Canada's nuclear industry boasts an impressive safety record. It has operated safely and securely for over 50 years. In fact, there has never been a single claim under Canada's nuclear liability act.
    We have robust technology, a well-trained workforce, and rigorous regulatory requirements. The industry is supported by legislation, such as the Nuclear Safety and Control Act and the Nuclear Fuel Waste Act, and is overseen by the independent expertise of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission.
    What most Canadians probably do not realize is that Canada's nuclear liability regime is already nearly 40 years old, young by anyone's standard in this place, I am sure. However, times and standards have changed when it comes to the nuclear industry. Clearly, this legislation needs to be brought into the modern age.

[Translation]

    As a responsible government, we must ensure that our system is up to date and that it can respond to any incidents. That is why we have brought in a bill to modernize Canada's nuclear liability regime.

[English]

    This new legislation will increase the amount of compensation available to address civil damage from $75 million to $1 billion. We believe that the $1-billion figure strikes the right balance between protecting Canadian taxpayers and holding companies accountable in the event of an accident. The amount is also in line with current international standards.
    The proposed legislation maintains the key principle of absolute and exclusive liability for operators of nuclear facilities for injury and damage. This means that the liability of the operator will be unqualified and undivided. There will be no need to prove fault, and no one else will be held liable.
    These are big numbers we are talking about. In fact, nuclear insurers have indicated that a $1-billion liability limit would mean an increase in premiums of five to eight times the amount operators are currently paying. If we take, for example, some of the operators in Ontario who have several reactors at their nuclear power plants, they currently pay premiums in the neighbourhood of up to $1.2 million for a $75 million insurance policy. Under this legislation, they would be required to pay annual premiums of up to $10 million for a $1 billion insurance policy.
    What about the cost to ratepayers? Based on average monthly electricity consumption by Ontario households of 1,000 kilowatts an hour, the impact of the increased insurance would amount to a very small amount. In fact, it would be roughly less than $2 per year.
    As for compensation, Bill C-22 will broaden the definition of compensable damage to include physical injury, economic loss, preventative measures, and environmental damage. It will also extend the limitation period for submitting compensation claims for bodily injury from 10 years to 30 years. This will help address any latent illnesses that may only be detected years later, after an accident. It is another important way our government is protecting the health and safety of Canadians.

  (1625)  

    Bill C-22 would significantly improve the claims compensation process, increase the financial liability of nuclear operators for damages and provide greater legal certainty for Canada's nuclear industry. Ultimately, these reforms would boost public confidence, Canadians' confidence in the safety and responsibility of the industry as a whole.
    Our government is taking these concrete steps to address other important issues for the nuclear sector. This includes responsibly managing legacy waste, restructuring Atomic Energy of Canada Limited and promoting international trade.
    Let us talk about international efforts.
     As hon. members know, when we talk about nuclear energy, we are talking about a global issue that knows no borders. With Bill C-22, we are implementing the provisions of the International Atomic Energy Agency's Convention on Supplementary Compensation for Nuclear Damage. This convention is an international instrument to address nuclear civil liability in the rare and unlikely event of a nuclear incident.
    By adhering to these additional international standards, Canada will bolster its domestic compensation regime by up to $450 million by bringing in significant new funding. This will bring the total potential compensation in Canada up to $1.45 billion.
    Joining this convention will reinforce our commitment to building a strong, global, nuclear liability regime.

[Translation]

    This underscores how important this Canadian bill is, not only with respect to financial issues, but also in other areas, such as clarifying what constitutes a nuclear incident.

[English]

    These changes will also help provide greater certainty for Canadian nuclear supply companies that want to market their services in a country that is a member of the convention.
    Given that our closest neighbour, the United States, is already a member, our membership will allow the two countries to establish civil liability treaty relations.
     Korea and Japan have also signalled their intention to join the convention. Once Canada becomes a member, the convention will be one step closer to becoming a reality.
    In conclusion, our government believes that economic prosperity and environmental protection are not mutually exclusive goals. They can and they do go hand in hand. The legislation we are debating today is designed to do just that.

[Translation]

    This bill will ensure that Canada's energy resources are developed safely and responsibly and that the environment is protected.

[English]

    The energy safety and security act would provide a solid framework to regulate the offshore and nuclear liability regimes in Canada and to ensure they would remain world class. It sends a strong signal to the world that Canada is a safe and responsible supplier of energy resources and that Canada, at the same time, is open for business.
    That is why I want to urge all hon. members to support this important legislation. I have appreciated the debate in previous sittings, and I look forward to responding to questions from my colleagues at this time.
Ms. Chris Charlton (Hamilton Mountain, NDP):  
    Mr. Speaker, as you can imagine, as the NDP critic for natural resources, I have a ton of questions for the minister that I would love to ask, but I do not want to offer him a big buffet today so he can pick and choose which ones he answers. I will focus in on something really specific.
    Access to information documents acquired by Greenpeace indicate that the Department of Natural Resources commissioned a study on the impacts of the economic effects of a nuclear accident in 2013 to support revisions to the nuclear liability and compensation act.
    According to those documents, Ontario Power Generation and the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission limited the scope of another study on the health effects of a nuclear accident so they would not undermine the study by the ministry.
    The CNSC study was released to the public and the Standing Committee on Natural Resources, but study on the economic consequences of a nuclear accident was not.
    To me, it is completely unacceptable that both parliamentarians and the public would be kept in the dark with respect to that study as we are debating Bill C-22.
    I am respectfully requesting the minister today to agree to table those documents in the House of Commons so we can all have the benefit of knowing what that study said before we give third and final reading to the bill.

  (1630)  

Hon. Greg Rickford:  
    Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the hon. member's question and her participation in this debate.
    At every turn throughout this debate, we have had an opportunity to look at legislation tabled here today, and in previous debates, that talks about a world-class liability regime. In getting to that point, we have had every opportunity to hear from experts.
    There is plenty of information out there for us to rely on in order to advance the debate on this important and timely subject matter.
Hon. Geoff Regan (Halifax West, Lib.):  
    Mr. Speaker, during the committee reports at the committee stage, where the committee reviewed this bill, the scope of the committee's work was strictly restrained. It was very narrow, as decided by the government majority in that committee, of course.
    One sometimes senses the invisible hand of the minister in the committee and the decisions that are made. However, one of the things that we ought to have been studying was the impact of this bill in the north and what the limits ought to be for liability, particularly in relation to oil and gas exploration in the north.
     The Prime Minister likes to go to the north and go around on snowmobiles and so forth, and we see him on the front of ships, but he does not seem to show much interest in the environment. We never hear him mention climate change when he is in the north, for example. That is a concern.
    In committee we ought to be able to look at questions like what our response capacity is and what we could do about incident prevention in the north. When the committee last talked about these issues a few years ago, at the time of the BP Deepwater Horizon blowout in the Gulf of Mexico, the experts that came before it said that the ability to deal with spills in the north, under the ice in the Arctic, was not there.
    However, we know the minister has given approval for at least two wells. I think that there are three exploration licences that have been given in the Beaufort Sea, two of which are in deep water.
    What is going to happen here?
Hon. Greg Rickford:  
    Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the hon. member's curiosity on this issue.
    Canada's current absolute liability limits have not been updated since the 1980s. Indeed, we are taking a significant leap forward from the $30 million to $40 million range in the Atlantic and Arctic to $1 billion. This will place Canada's liability regime squarely among those of its peer countries.
    In case of fault or negligence liability remains unlimited.
Ms. Joan Crockatt (Calgary Centre, CPC):  
    Mr. Speaker, this is a bill that should be very interesting to all Canadians. All of us care about our environment. We want to ensure that our environment is protected. In fact, no government in Canadian history has been more proactive on the environment than this government.
    I think what Canadians want to know is, in broad terms, how would Bill C-22 actually toughen the environmental standards? We are not content to sit where we have been. We are continually increasing the environmental standards.
    I would like the minister to address how this bill would toughen our environmental standards, continue to hold our energy companies accountable and ensure that the environment is protected for Canadians while our development proceeds.
Hon. Greg Rickford:  
    Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the member's contributions and her hard work on the standing committee with her two hands, and not my invisible one.
    I appreciate the fact that energy is a key issue for her constituents. What I can assure her is that our regime and what is proposed in this bill, in both offshore and nuclear liability, compares well with the international community in terms of competent, independent regulators and their ability to enforce the kinds of standards about which she is concerned. We recognize that there are other countries that have provided benchmark standards. Norway and Australia are world leaders in offshore regimes, based on their respective regimes of extensive regulation and predictable process.
    We have looked to those regimes. We have considered the important and rigorous role that the independent boards perform at arm's-length in the interest of putting the safety of our Canadian communities in these areas, and Canada as a whole, at the forefront in developing these kinds of regimes, whether they are nuclear, offshore, pipelines, tanker safety and the like.