Friday, March 19, 1993


The House met at 10 a.m.








Mr. Gregory Dewar (Selkirk):  Mr. Speaker, I beg to present the petition of Helen Marie Sinclair, Leonard Carlson, Marlene Hall and others, requesting the Family Services minister to consider restoring funding for the friendship centres in Manitoba.




Mr. Jack Reimer (Chairperson of the Standing Committee on Economic Development):  Mr. Speaker, I beg to present the First Report of the Committee on Economic Development.

Mr. Clerk (William Remnant):  Your Standing Committee on Economic Development presents the following as its First Report:

      Your committee met on Thursday, March 18, 1993, at 10 a.m., in Room 254 of the Legislative Building to consider the Annual Report of Venture Manitoba Tours Ltd. for the year ended March 31, 1992.

      Mr. Bob Sparrow, Chairperson, and Mr. Bill Podolsky, Executive Director, Administrative Services, provided such information as was requested with respect to the Annual Report and business of Venture Manitoba Tours Ltd.

      Your committee has considered the Annual Report of Venture Manitoba Tours Ltd. for the year ended March 31, 1992, and has adopted the same as presented.

Mr. Reimer:  Mr. Speaker, I move, seconded by the honourable member for St. Norbert (Mr. Laurendeau), that the report of the committee be received.

Motion agreed to.


Introduction of Guests


Mr. Speaker:  Prior to Oral Questions, may I direct the attention of honourable members to the gallery, where we have with us this morning 24 adult visitors from the Kirkness Adult Learning Centre.  They are under the direction of Lenore Wiebe and Laurel Johnson.

      On behalf of all honourable members, I would like to welcome you here this morning.




Sunday Shopping

Legislation Enforcement


Mr. Gary Doer (Leader of the Opposition):  Mr. Speaker, my question is to the Premier.

      Mr. Speaker, today we have two United Church ministers very concerned that they had gone to the Winnipeg City Police about the issue of Sunday shopping and were told that even though there was no legislation passed in this Legislature they had been directed to not prosecute in terms of the Sunday shopping laws.

      Mr. Speaker, this is a very serious issue.  When we had court decisions in 1987, and former House leader Mercier, now a justice of the court, when he was in this Chamber asked us to pass the law to make sure that we were not breaking the law over a weekend in one day, we all gave leave to do that because of the precedence of having a law in this province.

      Today, we have a situation where the government has notified the public of a law, has tabled the bill in the House.  We have passed it to second reading.  It has not passed, and the police are not asked to fulfill the existing law passed in this Legislature.  This law provides a consensus between small communities and large communities, between small employers and large employers, and we believe the existing law is a good consensus.

      I would like to ask the Premier‑‑[interjection] Well, Mr. Speaker, I know they want to stifle speech on this, without having public hearings‑‑what legal authority does the Premier have to require that the law not be fulfilled and the prosecutions not take place in the province of Manitoba?  What legal authority?

Hon. James McCrae (Minister of Justice and Attorney General): Mr. Speaker, last fall when this matter came up, the government made clear its intentions with respect to this matter, which is a regulatory matter as opposed to a criminal matter.  It made its intentions known in the throne speech, and by early tabling of legislation in this House with respect to the government's intentions.

      Notice is thereby given that the discretion, which is appropriately and ordinarily exercised by police authorities, in this matter ought to be used, having in mind the intentions that were made well known by the government of Manitoba.

* (1005)


Sunday Shopping

Standing Committee Referral


Mr. Gary Doer (Leader of the Opposition):  Mr. Speaker, we have, in a court case, Regina versus Catagas, a court decision written by Sam Freedman in the Manitoba Court of Appeal, dealing with Manitoba legislation.

      He very clearly states, on a provincial matter‑‑this is a provincial law, that:  You cannot exercise the law one day and exercise it a different way a different day.  Tomorrow, it may be exercised in favour of Protestants, the next day in favour of the Jews.  Our laws cannot be so treated.  The Crown may not, by executive action, dispense with the laws.  The matter is as simple as that, and nearly three centuries of legal and constitutional history stand as a foundation for that principle.

      I would like to ask the Premier why he is directing the Crown not to follow the 1987 law passed in this Legislature, and why he is not directing that we deal with this piece of legislation in terms of public hearings in the province of Manitoba if they intend on passing this law in the province.

Hon. Gary Filmon (Premier):  Mr. Speaker, it is not a matter of the Premier directing anything.  The member knows full well that the Premier does not do those things and does not direct the law.

      What it is, as the Attorney General (Mr. McCrae) has explained, is a matter of the discretion that the law enforcement officers have.

      I might tell you that‑‑[interjection] Mr. Speaker, I wonder if the member for Flin Flon (Mr. Storie) could keep himself under control and listen to the response.

Mr. Doer:  You are such a controlled member.

Mr. Filmon:  Mr. Speaker, I assume that the member for Concordia (Mr. Doer) does not want to sit there and just cheap‑shot all the time, but he wants to get some information.

      The member might want to consult his colleague Bob Rae about this issue.  I might tell him that, under very similar circumstances, a bill with respect to opening up Sunday shopping was introduced into the Ontario Legislature‑‑

Some Honourable Members:  Oh, oh.

Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.

Mr. Filmon:  The bill, on a very parallel sense, was introduced into the Ontario Legislature on the 2nd of June, 1992, indicating the intent of the Ontario Legislature with respect to legislation, and that bill has still not been passed by the Ontario Legislature.

      Again, prosecutions are not being proceeded, charges are not being proceeded because of the discretion that law enforcement agencies show when legislation has been introduced that indicates the intention and, in fact, states the date on which the bill will be effective.

      That is the situation with respect to Ontario.  It is exactly the same as the situation with respect to Manitoba, and it is exactly the way in which law enforcement agencies across the country will and do operate.

Mr. Doer:  Mr. Speaker, this is a Manitoba Court of Appeal decision dealing with Manitoba action, with Manitoba Crown decisions, written by Manitoba Court of Appeal judges.

      This is a Manitoba legislation that was passed by all three parties when‑‑[interjection] Yes, and the member for River Heights (Mrs. Carstairs) voted with it as well‑‑passed by all three parties in 1987 because we did not want to be in violation of the law.  We did not want to pass something retroactively and ask the Crown and the police to close their eyes to the existing law.

      I remember that advice from now‑existing Justice Mercier when he was the House leader of the Conservative party.  That is why we all gave leave, so that the Crown and the police would not have to decide whether to prosecute or not.

      I would like to ask this Premier, in light of the fact that even his own people are saying the law is an open question‑‑I am not talking about Ontario, and Ontario Court of Appeal decisions.  I would be asking the same question to Bob Rae, because we have a great consensus on Sunday shopping in Manitoba between small business and large business, Mr. Speaker.

      I would like to ask the Premier to immediately instruct his government to have the public hearings and have the vote on third reading on this bill, respect the legislative process in this Chamber.  You have had four months to deal with this.  We passed it in December.  Have the courage of your convictions.  Let us have the public hearings next week across Manitoba.

* (1010)

Mr. Filmon:  Mr. Speaker, the member knows full well that in the days in which his party was in office, they regularly introduced tax measure increases as parts of budgets, tax measure increases‑‑

Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.


Point of Order


Mr. Doer:  Point of order, Mr. Speaker.  The Premier will know that there is a whole series of legal precedents dealing with tax measures that are different than legislation.  The Premier should know that.

Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.  The honourable Leader does not have a point of order.  It is clearly a dispute over the facts.

* * *

Mr. Filmon:  Mr. Speaker, this is not the courtroom, and neither the Leader of the Opposition nor I are lawyers.  I do not think that we want to do this on the basis of that.

      Mr. Speaker, every time they introduce‑‑[interjection] I think I had better reconsider my position, given the offered support of the member for Osborne (Mr. Alcock).

      The member knows full well that every time they introduced a budget they introduced tax measures that took effect the very day the budget was introduced, despite the fact that the budget was not passed into law, Mr. Speaker.

      Those who have jurisdiction and control of the law are those who make these recommendations and these analyses, not politicians looking for some political angle on a story.  It is the lawyers who make those decisions, not because they want to make a political interpretation or they want to quote out of context or they want to do all of those things.

      The member for‑‑

An Honourable Member:  Boy, are you in bad shape.

Mr. Filmon:  Well, Mr. Speaker, we will see who is in bad shape when the member takes on his leadership mantle.  The fact of the matter is that the member for Inkster (Mr. Lamoureux) will have to look elsewhere for his support.  Regrettably, I cannot offer any.


Human Resources Opportunity Centre

Parkland Office Closure


Ms. Rosann Wowchuk (Swan River):  Mr. Speaker, this government continues to attack the poor and the vulnerable, and it continues to do it in a very political way.  First, they cut the friendship centre funding in Dauphin and Swan River, as well as others.  Now they are eliminating the Parkland Human Resources Opportunity Centre.  The Parkland is being treated differently than other parts of the province.

      Can the Minister of Family Services tell this House how the elimination of this service is going to help people, particularly at a time when there is an increased caseload‑‑more and more people are facing unemployment‑‑and in light of the fact that the Parkland faces some of the highest drop‑out rates and some of the highest suicide rates?

      What is this going to do to help the people of the Swan River and Dauphin area get back into the workforce?

Hon. Harold Gilleshammer (Minister of Family Services):  Mr. Speaker, the member's Leader on Monday said there are many difficult choices that have to be made.

      I refer you to the one line in an editorial in a local paper.  It says:  No Canadian politician from any party who is actually in office pretends anymore that there is any choice but to cut spending, reduce the deficit and get the debt under control.

      We know that Premier Romanow did not take any great delight in increasing the sales tax in Saskatchewan on the revenue side or in making other difficult decisions.  This is one of the difficult budget decisions that governments have to face at this time.

* (1015)

Ms. Wowchuk:  Mr. Speaker, the government has tough choices, and people are finding out that Tory times are tough times.

      How can the minister justify this cut in services that they provide for people on probation and single parents trying to get back into the workforce?  How are these people going to get out of the poverty cycle, or is that where he wants to keep them?

Mr. Gilleshammer:  Mr. Speaker, all week the members opposite have criticized any budget reductions that have been made on this side or even the increases that we have offered in the Estimates for Family Services, yet have offered no other alternatives within this department, no other alternatives of how to address the deficit issue.

      I am sure, Mr. Speaker, that Premier Rae in Ontario takes no great delight in the fact that he is going to be reducing the public service by 18,000 positions in that province.

      These are difficult decisions.  We have to attack the deficit and the long‑term debt.  I say to you that all of the suggestions coming forth from the other side are to increase costs, increase spending and with that, of course, comes the increase in taxes.


Alternative Programs


Ms. Rosann Wowchuk (Swan River):  Mr. Speaker, if the government would have done a cost analysis on this they would realize that this is going to cost them far more money than anything else.  We will never get people out of the poverty cycle.  If this service is going to be cut, where does the minister expect these people to move, to Winnipeg to get their service?  How does this fit with their decentralization plan?  Where are all the decentralized services‑‑

Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.  The honourable member has put her question.

Hon. Harold Gilleshammer (Minister of Family Services):  I am pleased that the member is now a proponent of decentralization. I remember well the major criticisms of having any positions move out of the city of Winnipeg in the past.

      Obviously, Mr. Speaker, the‑‑


Point of Order


Ms. Wowchuk:  On a point of order, the member implies that we have not been in favour of decentralization.  We have never spoken out against‑‑

      Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.  The honourable member does not have a point of order.  It is a dispute over the facts.

* * *

Mr. Gilleshammer:  Mr. Speaker, I might instruct the member to read some of her Leader's comments.  He was clearly against decentralization.

      Surely, members opposite must realize that the greatest economic opportunity for Manitoba is the fact that we have not raised taxes in five years, not raised taxes over five budgets. Other provinces are making these tough decisions.

      The member, in asking us for additional expenditures, is clearly asking for an increase in taxes, an increase in the sales tax.  These are not in the cards, Mr. Speaker.


Universities Visa Students

Tuition Increase


Mr. Reg Alcock (Osborne):  Mr. Speaker, I believe the minister just said cut spending, reduce the deficit, get the debt under control‑‑tough decisions.  I would like to ask the Premier a question about a couple of the decisions they have made that seemed a little inconsistent with this goal.  I would like to ask him:  How much additional revenue will this province receive as a result of their decision to increase the fees of visa students 75 percent?

Hon. Gary Filmon (Premier):  Mr. Speaker, again, we deal with a situation in which the member is asking us to assume responsibility for policy matters in which we are the only province in the country that is providing a reduced rate for visa students.  At one time, there was not a differential rate across the country and, province by province, that matter has changed to the point that now we are the only ones.  The evidence seems to be that it does not affect the number of students who come, regardless of the policy because‑‑

Some Honourable Members:  Oh, oh.

Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.

Mr. Filmon:  This is a question for Estimates debate, Mr. Speaker.  If you want to get into a debate on the issue then give us the chance to give you all of the information.  You obviously do not operate with all the information; we are trying to give you the information.  Let us get down‑‑

Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.


Point of Order


Mr. Gary Doer (Leader of the Opposition):  Mr. Speaker, we were certainly willing to debate the Estimates, but I should point out that the Department of Education Estimates were not ready last week.  So I think the Premier should‑‑

Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.  The honourable Leader does not have a point of order.  It is a dispute over the facts.

      The honourable First Minister, to finish his response.

* (1020)

* * *

Mr. Filmon:  Mr. Speaker, I assumed that was not a point of order.

      The fact of the matter is that these are questions that we should discuss in detail.  We should debate and we should put all the facts on the table.  One of the facts that has to be put on the table is that no other province provides for that basis. Every other province now applies differential rates for tuition.


School Divisions

Property Tax Cap


Mr. Reg Alcock (Osborne):  Mr. Speaker, the fact is this decision has no impact on the provincial budget, zero‑‑‑but there is another one.  Let me ask the Premier this:  What is the impact on revenues or expenditures, the provincial budget, by the decision to limit increases to the special levy by 2 percent, to take away the responsibility of school boards and freeze the increases to the special requirement at 2 percent?  How does that affect your budget in this province?

Hon. Gary Filmon (Premier):  Mr. Speaker, with respect to the question about the differential fees, again, that is not a matter that has been imposed by this government.  It has been recommended as a source of revenue because every other province is taking it.  Their universities are taking it as a source of revenue.  It is not something that is forced upon them.  They can choose whether or not to do it.  That is No. 1.  Number 2‑‑

Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.


Point of Order


      Mr. Alcock:  Mr. Speaker, that is absolutely untrue.  The university has been told if they do not do this, their grant will be clawed back by‑‑

      Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.  The honourable member for Osborne does not have a point of order.

* * *

Mr. Filmon:  The other aspect, of course, of the question is one as to whether or not this government has a responsibility to the taxpayers to keep their taxes down.  That member, who is going to run federally, assumes that there is a whole host of different taxpayers, that there is a different person at the municipal level, a different person at the provincial level, a different person at the federal level.  It is all the same taxpayer.

      When we put that limitation on the amount of increase of property taxes, it is because we are concerned with the taxpayer, that same taxpayer.  Not only do we want to ensure that we are not raising the burden on that taxpayer through our direct actions, we do not want to indirectly increase the burden on that taxpayer.  That is why we are doing what we are doing, and if he cannot understand that, he should resign instead of trying to run for a higher level.

Mr. Alcock:  Mr. Speaker, the fact is that those same taxpayers elected the school trustees.  Those same taxpayers want them to make those decisions.  We have a board of governors at the universities.  They can make those decisions, not this Premier (Mr. Filmon).  It does not affect his budget one bit.

      I have a very simple question for the Premier.  Why is he depriving the duly‑elected representatives of those taxpayers of their right to exercise their judgment on behalf of the people who elected them?  Who does he think he is?

Mr. Filmon:  I would say that the taxpayers of Manitoba appreciate the actions we have taken, and they will demonstrate to the Liberal Party that they do not support their desire to have taxes go up, whether they be property taxes, provincial taxes or any other taxes.  They do not approve.


Health Care System



Mr. Dave Chomiak (Kildonan):  Mr. Speaker, it is ironic.  In the morning they say, do not enforce the law; in the afternoon they tell trustees, this is what you must do.

      My question is to the Minister of Health.  The minister has decided to shift 2,000 to 3,000 children's operations per year from community hospitals to Children's Hospital.

      He is shifting operations from rooms that are quite adequate and meet modern operating standards to hospital operating rooms that do not meet modern operating standards, and there is scrambling to find different and new operation rooms at Children's Hospital.

      My question to the minister:  Why is this minister making this decision when proper facilities are not in line and when waiting lists and difficulties will ensue?

Hon. Donald Orchard (Minister of Health):  Mr. Speaker, let me be unequivocal and direct with my honourable friend.  I reject totally his preamble, his allegation and his frivolous fear‑mongering campaign.

* (1025)

Mr. Chomiak:  Is the minister aware that four of the five operating rooms at Children's Hospital do not meet the standards of the minister's own department in Health and Welfare Canada ambulatory services, rehab services?  They do not even meet their own size standards.  We had the rooms measured.

      They are far below the standards as adopted by the minister's own department, page 50 of the standards adopted by the Manitoba Health Services.

Mr. Orchard:  My honourable friend must have a very interesting approach to the issue because y honourable friend might recall that construction started on Children's Hospital as recently as, I think, 1982.  I think the previous government commissioned it and I think the previous government approved the plans.  I think the previous government measured the size of the operating rooms.  I think the previous government approved the air exchange system, et cetera.

      Now, Mr. Speaker, I want to try to be as fair as I can with my honourable friend.  My honourable friend is attempting to say that the facility that does 75 percent of pediatric surgery in the province of Manitoba is not carrying out those procedures on behalf of children with quality and with effectiveness.  It is an incredible attack that my honourable friend is now making on the integrity of children's services in the province of Manitoba, which, Sir, are amongst the finest in Canada.

Mr. Chomiak:  Mr. Speaker, I will reword my question so the minister perhaps will understand it.

      Why is the minister taking an additional 2,000 to 3,000 procedures from excellent facilities, state‑of‑the‑art facilities, to facilities at the Children's Hospital, which are already crowded, which do not meet the minister's own standards. These are the minister's own standards; we obtained this from the minister's department.  They do not even meet the minister's own standards.  He will not acknowledge it.  He will not even deal with it, and he is moving these facilities in there.  Why will the minister not answer the question?

Mr. Orchard:  Mr. Speaker, because when I have answered the question for my honourable friend in the past, he chooses not to accept the answer.  Three‑quarters of the surgery on children is being performed at the Children's Hospital, has been for the last number of years.  It has been a growing shift to the Children's Hospital.  That has been accommodated in four surgical theatres operating at eight hours per day, five days per week.

      We have, with the acceptance of this decision by the Urban Hospital Council‑‑November, unanimous decision‑‑all urban hospitals saying, shift the inpatient surgery to the Children's Hospital.  We have since then commissioned a fifth surgical theatre.  We have expanded the hours of the existing first four by two hours per day, for a total of 50 more hours of surgical capacity per week, which will accommodate the balance of the inpatient surgery for children in the province of Manitoba.

      That answer has been given to my honourable friend.  He chooses not to believe it for ignorance rather than fact, Sir.

* (1030)


Sustainable Development

Poverty Eradication


Ms. Marianne Cerilli (Radisson):  Mr. Speaker, the Premier keeps talking about sustainable development.  Then he will talk about how there is no money for agencies like the Anti‑Poverty Organization, the Minister of Environment's (Mr. Cummings) advisory council or Girl Guides.  Then they will give money to Atomic Energy of Canada or to pave wetlands.  This does not make sense.

      I would like to ask the Premier:  Has he read the annual report for the International Institute for Sustainable Development, which has one of its principles as poverty eradication and where it says that:  The demand for local control over the well‑being of current and future generations and an effective voice in decision making which affects the lives of people in local communities is essential to sustainable development?

      How does what he is doing fulfill that principle?

Hon. Gary Filmon (Premier):  Mr. Speaker, of course, the best thing that we can do for poverty eradication is to strengthen the economy and that means not mortgaging our future.

      If the member opposite wants to see what happens to countries that run their deficits up and their debt up to the point that the bankers of Zurich and New York control that, so they have no decisions to make‑‑[interjection] Mr. Speaker, the member opposite should listen to the words of Roy Romanow, a colleague New Democrat, who said that we cannot give up control over our decision making, that we must ensure that we build our economy by taking control, reducing our debt, reducing our deficit and keeping our economy competitive.

      That is why we are doing this, so that we will have the investment and the job creation and the opportunity to see this province grow, and that will eradicate poverty better than any programs that she wants to put of government spending on people. They do not eradicate poverty.  All they do is perpetuate poverty amongst people.

Ms. Cerilli:  Mr. Speaker, as I understand it, Saskatchewan is lowering their deficit, and having more poor people is very expensive.


Atomic Energy of Canada

Funding Justification


Ms. Marianne Cerilli (Radisson):  Mr. Speaker, why, if the Premier (Mr. Filmon) is concerned about federal cutbacks and federal offloading, are they giving $25,000 of Environment money to AECL?

An Honourable Member:  Hot potato, throw it over.

Hon. Glen Cummings (Minister of Environment):  This one is not even warm.

      Mr. Speaker, it is rather baffling to listen to the members of the opposition talk about how they are concerned about environmental matters and how the ability to test, the ability to monitor is so crucial to establishing the level of environmental protection and whatever potential damages may occur as a result of particular actions.  That is the kind of work that was being done at AECL to further research on better development of research into the area of determining levels of particular contaminants.  That is the kind of work we need in order to have the information to protect our environment, and they are too shortsighted to see that.

Ms. Cerilli:  Mr. Speaker, I just want clarification from the minister.  Why is it that they are giving $25,000 to an industry that already receives $150 million from the federal government? Is it being used to clean up the radioactive oil that AECL is putting in the Winnipeg River?

Mr. Cummings:  Mr. Speaker, we have one of the most technologically advanced centres in the country, perhaps in the world, being able to minutely measure contaminants and other scientific activities that we use to protect the environment.  It has nothing to do with nuclear reaction.  It has everything to do with the intelligence and the knowledge that is lodged with the people there, and we will be able to keep it resident in this province so we can continue to do the good job of looking after the environment.


School Divisions

Property Tax Cap


Ms. Avis Gray (Crescentwood):  Mr. Speaker, many colleagues in the Legislature this morning attended the MAST breakfast.  My colleagues and I spent the hour and a half talking to school trustees from across this province.  Not one of the trustees was aware of any consultations that this minister had had with school divisions.  Not one of the trustees was aware of this minister's education reform plan.  They did say that the 2 percent cap creates inequities and unfairness across school divisions, because some school divisions will be cutting transportation, some will be cutting teachers, some will be cutting services to special needs.

      My question for the Minister of Education is:  Is this minister willing to accept these consequences of the 2 percent cap which is creating not only inequities across school divisions but a deterioration of the education system in Manitoba?

Hon. Rosemary Vodrey (Minister of Education and Training):  Mr. Speaker, I do not think that the member did have a chance to speak with all of the trustees this morning because my colleagues and I certainly were at the same breakfast the member was at, and we got a completely different message than that member got.

      In addition, again, the 2 percent cap has been placed, as I have stated before, on the special requirement, and the special requirement has been different, obviously, for each school division as they look at what their expenses are going to be.

Ms. Gray:  If this minister and her Premier (Mr. Filmon) seem to support control and local autonomy, can this minister tell us why she has imposed a 2 percent cap on the school divisions which basically impedes their ability to make their own decisions and in fact will create a deterioration?

      Can this minister tell us why the contradiction?  Either you are giving them autonomy or you are not.  Which is it?

Mrs. Vodrey:  Mr. Speaker, we acted in the interests of taxpayers of Manitoba, and we have received information about taxpayers in other provinces, Saskatchewan in particular, where taxes are so far in arrears, 35 percent in arrears in some cases, that it would not matter if you attempted to tax them anyway, they do not have the money to pay.

      We have seen that in Saskatchewan.  Therefore, Mr. Speaker, this government acted in the interests of taxpayers across this province in recognition that Manitobans do not have the additional money to continue funding.  We therefore have asked school divisions to begin to problem solve and to continue to make good decisions on behalf of education in Manitoba.

Ms. Gray:  It certainly disturbs me that this government continues to base their decisions on what Saskatchewan and Ontario are doing and does not take leadership which it should be doing in this province.

Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.  The honourable member for Crescentwood, with your question, please.


Point of Order


Hon. Darren Praznik (Deputy Government House Leader):  The member for Crescentwood is well aware of the rules with respect to preambles in her supplementary question.  We would ask, on this side of the House, that that be enforced, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Gary Doer (Leader of the Opposition):  I think it was a well‑drawn‑out, clever sentence and therefore within the rules, Mr. Speaker, asking the minister.

Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.  I had already asked the honourable member for Crescentwood to put her question.

      The honourable member for Crescentwood, with your question.


School Divisions



Ms. Avis Gray (Crescentwood):  My final supplementary is for the Premier.  Can the Premier tell this House today a very simple answer?  Does the Premier support the ability of the school divisions to be autonomous and make decisions which they were elected to do?  Does he support that concept?

Hon. Gary Filmon (Premier):  Mr. Speaker, what I do not support is the tax and spend policies of the Liberal Party of Manitoba. I think the taxpayers are fed up with parties such as the Liberals who only want to tax and spend their money all the time.  They are fed up with that.  They have had enough of it. They need some common sense in government, and that is what we are doing.

* (1040)


Lynn Lake Friendship Centre

Funding Reinstatement


Mr. Jerry Storie (Flin Flon):  The people of Lynn Lake are looking for some common sense from this government.

      My question is to the Premier.  The Premier (Mr. Filmon) and his Minister of Family Services (Mr. Gilleshammer) have said on a number of occasions that the cuts to the friendship centre in Lynn Lake are justified based on the fact that there are other services available.

      Mr. Speaker, given the fact that there are very few government services in Lynn Lake, that many of the services provided by Family Services even, and probation services, come from Thompson, given the fact that the Lynn Lake Friendship Centre deals directly with 12,000 clients, youth, elders, seniors, families in abuse, women requiring sheltering, will the First Minister now acknowledge that the Lynn Lake Friendship Centre delivers service?  Will he reinstate the grant to the Lynn Lake centre so that the two people directly employed, and as many as 10 other people, do not lose their jobs in Lynn Lake?

Hon. Gary Filmon (Premier):  Mr. Speaker, we have a Department of Family Services and a Department of Health and departments of government that deliver all of the services to people throughout this province.  Departments such as Family Services have had annual increases under this administration averaging 10 percent to provide so many different services to people.

      We are in a situation in which governments today, in the '90s, governments of Liberal, New Democratic stripe, regardless of their politics, cannot afford to provide all of the services that were provided in the '70s and the '80s, when revenues were increasing by 10 and 15 percent annually.

      As difficult as it is, we have to face the same realities that Roy Romanow does, the same realities that Clyde Wells does, the same realities of every single administration in this country, and that is that governments, without raising taxes, cannot do everything that everybody would like them to do.

      The answer, of course, is the answer that is always provided by the New Democrats opposite in our House, and that is to tax more and spend more.

      That, Mr. Speaker, has to come to an end.  We cannot keep doing that.  This administration is determined not to continue to raise taxes.  We have not had to do it in the five previous budgets.  We have kept down personal income taxes, corporate taxes, the sales tax.

      We have maintained our commitment to the people of this province to keep their taxes down.  Regrettably, we are going to have to evaluate every single expenditure and find out how they stack up against keeping personal care home beds open, keeping hospital beds open and doing the fundamental things that people expect us to do.

Mr. Storie:  Mr. Speaker, no one has denied that choices need to be made.

      My question to the Premier or to the Minister of Family Services (Mr. Gilleshammer) is:  How can they justify cutting 35 jobs to organizations like the friendship centres, which provide services to hundreds of thousands of people, grants which support perhaps as many as 40 or 50 additional jobs?  How can the First Minister tell this House that the province is saving money when it is providing an $80,000 grant to the friendship centre in Lynn Lake, when it creates as many as 15 jobs?

Mr. Filmon:  Those hundreds of thousands of people draw services from every single government department.  They draw services from the Department of Family Services, from the Department of Health, from the Department of Justice and so on, Mr. Speaker.

      All of those 17,000 public servants who we have in our employ are providing all of these services that people in Lynn Lake and every other community depend upon.

      In terms of the friendship centres, from their annual reports for the 1990‑91 fiscal year, 13 percent of their revenues came from the provincial government.  Now, if he is telling us that because of that 13 percent reduction they will no longer be able to do anything, the fact of the matter is that that is not the case, and the reality is that the services that he talks about are services delivered by government departments throughout the public service.

      Those are things that regrettably, in the final analysis, we cannot do everything.  We cannot fund everything.  We cannot support every program.  We cannot do everything that he would demand upon us.

      The only way we could do it would be to continue to raise taxes and continue to place a greater burden on all working Manitobans, Mr. Speaker, and that, frankly is not what most Manitobans want today.


Meeting Request


Mr. Jerry Storie (Flin Flon):  The First Minister obviously has never been to Lynn Lake.  He has never been to the friendship centre in Lynn Lake.

      Will the First Minister join me in meeting with the friendship centre board, with the LGD of Lynn Lake, with the school district of Lynn Lake, in Lynn Lake?

      If the First Minister can be convinced that this reduction of $80,000 will not only jeopardize the quality of life for thousands of people but will actually cost the province more money, will he reinstate the $80,000 to the Lynn Lake Friendship‑‑

Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.

Hon. Gary Filmon (Premier):  Mr. Speaker, the preamble of the member opposite is absolutely inaccurate.  I have indeed been in the friendship centre at Lynn Lake on a number of occasions, and his preamble is absolutely wrong.

Mr. Speaker:  The time for Oral Questions has expired.


Nonpolitical Statements


Mr. Jack Reimer (Niakwa):  Mr. Speaker, may I have leave to make a nonpolitical statement?

Mr. Speaker:  Does the honourable member have leave to make a nonpolitical statement? [agreed]

Mr. Reimer:  Mr. Speaker, I rise today to express my strong support for the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.  I do so at this time since the House will not be sitting on Sunday March 21, the actual day of the United Nations designation in 1986 to recognize this very important goal.

      That UN declaration commemorates those killed and wounded on March 21, 1960, as they participated in the peaceful, anti‑apartheid demonstrations in Sharpeville, South Africa.

      I am a strong advocate for the removal of the barriers that bring about racial discrimination, and I express our desire that United Nations and all member states and countries will follow these principles of co‑operation and respect for others in its deliberations and actions.

      We need to eliminate racism.  It is an abhorrent monster that will defeat all of its forms.  We must bring all possible resources to bear on this target.

      I also want to acknowledge all the nongovernment involvement in our efforts and thank all the people, groups and organizations for their participation.  This includes the Manitoba Multicultural Resource Committee, the Coalition for Human Equality, the Citizenship Council of Manitoba, the Winnipeg Boys and Girls Club Incorporated, and several Winnipeg schools that will be showcasing projects against racism at Red River Community College and Daniel Mac Collegiate next week.

      As we all know, much as we might wish otherwise, racism does exist in Manitoba and elsewhere, and we must ensure to make it our personal responsibility to eliminate it.  Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Speaker:  Does the honourable member for Wellington have leave to make a nonpolitical statement? [agreed]

Ms. Becky Barrett (Wellington):  Mr. Speaker, on behalf of us on this side of the House, I would also like to congratulate the community in celebration on Sunday of the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and state as well that while we may celebrate in either participating in activities or just reminding ourselves individually of what March 21 has begun and what it now stands for, we must also be aware that racism and elimination of racism is something that needs to be worked on by everyone all year long.

      It is a 365‑day, 24‑hour‑a‑day job for all of us and while there may be events that go on over the weekend and into next week, it is up to each one of us as individuals, each one of us as members of organizations, each one of us in this House, particularly as legislators, to do all that we can to support the groups and the organizations that are working towards the elimination of racism and to see that in these times, which are not only difficult economically but also difficult for us as a society to work toward the elimination of racism, that we redouble our efforts in every area of our life and with all of the resources and prospects that we have to eliminate the scourge of racism.  Thank you.

* (1050)

Mr. Speaker:  Does the honourable member for Inkster have leave to make a nonpolitical statement? [agreed]

Mr. Kevin Lamoureux (Inkster):  Mr. Speaker, earlier this morning, a coalition for human equality had a press conference. In fact, in the news release they made reference to two facts that I wanted just to point out.  The first is that March 21 marks the anniversary of the Sharpeville massacre in South Africa when peaceful demonstrators against apartheid were wounded and killed.  In 1966, the United Nations declared March 21 the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination in commemoration of this tragic event.

      Mr. Speaker, racism is a very serious issue, and I believe all members of this Chamber treat it just as that.  I know it varies from different degrees.  If I may, I just want to comment on some of the degrees of it.  I have had individual members or colleagues, not only from within my caucus, from all caucuses that have come up to me and said, you know, I represent a multicultural riding.  I do represent a multicultural riding, but each and every one of us in this Chamber represent a multicultural riding.

      Even though it is not meant to be a negative, in fact it is meant to be a positive thing when they make that reference that I represent a multicultural riding.  What is really meant is that in the riding that I represent, there is a higher percentage of visible ethnic groups, Mr. Speaker.  I look to my colleague for Osborne (Mr. Alcock) who has maybe more Italians in his riding than I have.  I might have more Filipinos in my riding than many other members inside this Chamber, but we all represent a multicultural riding.

      Mr. Speaker, I had an incident awhile back where I was standing beside a lady from the black community in which someone approached her and asked her the question how long have you been in Canada.  Well, this particular lady was in Canada for five generations, in fact, had come from Halifax.  Again, it was not something that was intentionally done to hurt the person.  So you have it from that degree of racism to the degree in which you will have the Ku Klux Klan or the telephone hot line.

      Mr. Speaker, when you have those differing degrees, I would suggest to you that there is an issue of racism that has to be addressed.  There have been reports and the minister has acted on some, and we as a Legislature no doubt want to do and to participate in whatever fashion we can, to alleviate or to allow more tolerance and to provide more education.  There are many different ways in which we can do this.

      I would just like to leave on a note of encouraging all of my colleagues in the Chamber, and, in fact, encourage organizations that are out there to talk about education and to ensure that we combat racism together.  Together we can combat it and encourage all of us to take an active role in doing just that.

      Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

* * *

      Mr. Speaker:  Does the honourable member for Emerson have leave to make a nonpolitical statement? [agreed]

Mr. Jack Penner (Emerson):  As you know, the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences is going to be holding their Juno awards on Sunday the 21st at 6:30 p.m. in Toronto.  As we speak, we have a young group of ladies, three young ladies from Halbstadt and Altona, who have been nominated for the best country group.  I think that is a credit to Manitoba and all entertainers in Manitoba.

      I stand here with great pride to represent that area that is traditionally known to have brought forward a great group of entertainers historically.  This group of young ladies, by the names of Sheila Friesen, Wanda Friesen and Sandi Klassen have been nominated to receive one of those Juno awards, and I ask all of us in this House to wish them well to bring home a Juno.

* * *

Mr. Speaker:  Does the honourable member for The Maples have leave to make a nonpolitical statement? [agreed]

Mr. Gulzar Cheema (The Maples):  Mr. Speaker, I would also like to join with the member for Niakwa (Mr. Reimer), the member for Wellington (Ms. Barrett) and the member for Inkster (Mr. Lamoureux), to say a few words on this issue on the international day on racism.

      Mr. Speaker, I have a very different view about the whole issue.  I think it is a learned behaviour.  This behaviour does not really belong to one section of a community, not on the basis of colour or race.  I think it is across the world, depends on where you are; wherever you are a minority, you are a part of that kind of terrorism.

      That is why there are individuals who are being oppressed in one country.  They are doing the same things in their own countries.  So it is more an issue of economy, more an issue of self‑esteem and more the issue of power and more the issue of taking control of others.

      So, to say that we can eliminate racism, I would say we are dreaming.  It is not going to disappear and never disappeared for the last centuries.  It will last.  As long as we can try to learn from each other, try to learn some of the positive things.

      Mr. Speaker, there I have difficulty with what has happened with multiculturalism, that we have been able to point out all the differences possible, but we never concentrate on the positive things that we all contribute.  We know that, whether under this different name or different skin, we still are the same people.

      What I feel very strongly for the last five years at least being a member of a visible minority‑‑so‑called visible minority‑‑I think I have done this, at least in my view of the job, in terms of at least taking some of the fears away, some of the misconceptions away.  I think that we can do that part in our own way.

* (1100)

      I think this is the only Assembly in this country where you have not only the coloured or the noncoloured people, but almost every community is represented by us here.  It is very positive. I think we should take pride in that, especially during the Meech Lake debate when we saw that Quebec was saying this province is racist, I think that was total nonsense, because if you look, if you see what we are doing here, it is very positive, and if we can continue to do that, at least we can continue to try to amend what has gone wrong.  As I said, it may never be 100 percent possible.  We are all human and we should learn from each other's mistakes.  Thank you.

Mr. Speaker:  Does the honourable Minister of Culture, Heritage and Citizenship have leave to make a nonpolitical statement? [agreed]

Hon. Bonnie Mitchelson (Minister of Culture, Heritage and Citizenship):  Thank you, Mr. Speaker.  I want to rise to join with all the members in the House today who have spoken already, and I am sure with all members of the Legislature, when I stand and indicate that I too only hope and pray that indeed some day we will come to an understanding among each other as Manitobans and Canadians and there will be a slowdown, I suppose, of racism and racial incidents.  I know it is incumbent upon all Manitobans and all Canadians to work extremely hard throughout the year, not only on one day that has been designated for the elimination of racial discrimination but indeed throughout each and every day of the year with each and every fellow Manitoban.

      Mr. Speaker, I think the key word in the whole educational process of working towards a better understanding is respect.  I think it is respect for each other as human beings.  I think it is respect for each other in the workplace, in the school system and right throughout the activities that we do and participate in on a daily basis.  I understand that there have been incidents in the past, and I know that we will continue to hear about incidents that do discriminate, but I would encourage all of us here as leaders within our province to set an example on how we can co‑operate and work together and learn to understand and respect each other.  Indeed, I think as we continue along that path and encourage all Manitobans to do so, we will notice on a year‑to‑year basis that incidents will become less and less that will ultimately lead towards a community with complete racial harmony.

      Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

* * *

Mr. Speaker:  Does the honourable member for St. Boniface have leave to make a nonpolitical statement? [agreed]

Mr. Neil Gaudry (St. Boniface):  Monsieur le president, il me fait plaisir aujourd'hui d'adresser la parole a cette auguste assemblee afin de celebrer et de perpetuer la Francophonie au Manitoba.

      Demain, le 20 mars 1993, sera la Journee Internationale de la Francophonie.

      Dans pres de 50 pays du monde, des femmes et des hommes, des jeunes gens, et des enfants de tout age, vont celebrer la Journee Internationale de la Francophonie.

      Le Secretaire general parlementaire de l'Assemblee internationale des parlementaires de langue francaise, Monsieur Andre Delehedde, explique clairement l'importance significative de la Francophonie dans le monde entier.

      Monsieur Delehedde disait dans l'editorial de la revue de l'Association internationale des parlementaires de langue francaise et je cite:

      "Lorsqu'Onesime Reclus inventait le mot "Francophonie", il depassait les classifications habituelles s'appuyant sur la race, l'ethnie ou le degre de developpement et fondait un rassemblement non seulement a partir de la langue mais aussi et surtout a partir des valeurs qu'elle vehicule et a partir de l'ideal commun qu'elle est capable d'engendrer.

      Le mot existant, le constat etabli, une volonte s'est manifestee pour sortir des cadres anciens nes de l'histoire et pour promouvoir une solidarite active a partir des liens nes de l'usage en commun de la langue francaise."

      Monsieur le president, le 20 mars est un grand jour pour la Francophonie mondiale, la Francophonie canadienne et pour la Francophonie manitobaine.

      De la meme maniere que cela paraissait dans une recente publication de "une lettre de la Francophonie", j'aimerais repeter dans cette chambre qu'en Afrique et dans l'Ocean Indien, en Amerique du Nord et aux Caraibes, en Europe et en Asie, tous ces "humains" dont Vigneault disait qu'ils "sont de ma race" ont en commun le francais, qu'il soit leur langue maternelle, qu'il leur serve a communiquer au‑dela des frontieres ou tout simplement a s'enrichir d'une culture d'autant plus rayonnante qu'elle est internationale.

      En celebrant, chacun a sa maniere, mais tous avec le meme enthousiasme, la Journee de la Francophonie, de Moroni a Saint‑Malo, de Trois‑Rivieres au Manitoba, les francophones du monde entier se souviendront que l'alliance est a l'oeuvre dans notre temps et dans les domaines qui comptent.

      Monsieur le president, je termine en citant une phrase prononcee par Monsieur Georges Pompidou, alors president de la Republique francaise, qui prononcait une allocution le 25 mai 1971 a l'Ambassade de France a Bruxelles.  Tout en parlant de l'aspect fondamental de la langue francaise, il definit tres bien a mon avis le vecu journalier des francophones canadiens et des francophones manitobains.

      Le President Pompidou disait:  "Le role de la langue n'est pas un simple moyen d'expression, c'est un moyen de penser, un moyen d'influence intellectuelle, et c'est a travers notre langue que nous existons dans le monde . . . ."


Mr. Speaker, I am pleased today to speak to this august assembly to celebrate and perpetuate the Francophone community in Manitoba.  Tomorrow, March 20, 1993, will be the international day of Francophone communities.  In nearly 50 countries of the world, men, women, young people and children of all ages, will be celebrating the international day of Francophone communities.

The Parliamentary Secretary General of the International Assembly of French‑Speaking Parliamentarians, Mr. Andre Delehedde, clearly explains the significant importance of Francophone communities throughout the entire world.  Mr. Delehedde stated in the editorial of the review of the International Assembly of French‑Speaking Parliamentarians, and I quote, "When Onesime Reclus invented the word 'Francophonie', he was going beyond the usual classifications that are based on race, ethnicity or degree of development and was founding an assembly based not only on language, but also and above all, based on values for which it acts as a vehicle and on the basis of the common ideal that it can engender.

The word now existing, the acknowledgement made, a desire has been shown to break out of the old framework born of history and to promote an active solidarity based on the links born of the shared use of the French language."

Mr. Speaker, March 20 is an important day for the world Francophone community, for the Canadian Francophone community, and for Manitoban Francophone community.  In the same manner as in a recent publication of "A letter from the Francophone community," I would like to repeat in this House that in Africa and the Indian Ocean, in North America and in the Caribbean, in Europe and in Asia, all these humans of whom Vigneault said, "they are of my race," have French in common, whether it is their mother tongue, whether it helps them to communicate beyond their borders or simply helps them to enrich themselves with a culture that shines all the more brightly because it is an international one.  In celebrating, each in his or her own way but all with the same enthusiasm, the international day of Francophone communities, from Moroni to St. Malo, from Trois‑Rivieres to Manitoba, Francophones the world over will remember that the alliance is at work in our time and in the fields that count.

Mr. Speaker, I will close by quoting words pronounced by Mr. Georges Pompidou who was, at the time, president of the French Republic in a speech made on May 25, 1971, at the French Embassy in Brussels.  In referring to the fundamental aspect of the French language, he defines very well, in my opinion, the daily experience of Canadian Francophones and Manitoban Francophones. President Pompidou stated:  The role of language is not simply to be a mode of expression; it is a mode of thought, a mode of intellectual influence, and it is through our language that we exist in the world.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

* * *

Mr. Speaker:  Does the honourable member for Crescentwood have leave to make a nonpolitical statement? [agreed]

Ms. Avis Gray (Crescentwood):  Mr. Speaker, I rise today to pay tribute to a special group of volunteers in our province.  Those volunteers are the school trustees.  As all members of the Chamber are aware, the Manitoba Association of School Trustees is holding their annual conference here in Winnipeg this weekend.  I know many members of the Legislature had the opportunity to have breakfast this morning with the school trustees.

      I would like to pay tribute to this group of volunteers because I think, as all of us know, there are very many individuals who must work very, very hard in communities, whether those communities be in rural Manitoba, northern Manitoba or the city of Winnipeg, to improve our great province and to improve this nation.  I think those individuals who give of their time, their expertise, their personal resources to be school trustees should be commended by all members of this Chamber.

      It was certainly a pleasure for me to talk with school trustees from all across this province, from Morris to Brandon to Russell, The Pas, Winnipeg and Fort Garry.  It was a pleasure for me to hear about the dedication and the commitment with which these individuals give of their time in their communities.

      Mr. Speaker, I grew up in a rural community, so I certainly am aware of the importance of people in the community who must give of their time to volunteer for whatever type of organization.  School trustees are certainly no exception, and I would ask that all members of this Chamber this morning join with us in saying thank you to volunteers, such as school trustees, and to wish them well in their conference and to wish them well in the future years to come.

      Thank you, Mr. Speaker.




Hon. Jim Ernst (Acting Government House Leader:  Mr. Speaker, will you please call Bills 2 and 3.




Bill 2‑The Endangered Species Amendment Act

      Mr. Speaker:  On the proposed motion of the honourable Minister of Natural Resources (Mr. Enns), Bill 2, The Endangered Species Amendment Act; Loi modifiant la Loi sur les especes en voie de disparition, standing in the name of the honourable member for Brandon East (Mr. Leonard Evans).

An Honourable Member:  Stand.

Mr. Speaker:  Is there leave that this matter remain standing? [agreed]


Bill 3‑The Oil and Gas and Consequential Amendments Act


Mr. Speaker:  On the proposed motion of the honourable Minister of Energy and Mines (Mr. Downey), Bill 3, The Oil and Gas and Consequential Amendments Act; Loi concernant le petrole et le gaz naturel et apportant des modifications correlatives a d'autres lois, standing in the name of the honourable member for Elmwood (Mr. Maloway).

An Honourable Member:  Stand.

Mr. Speaker:  Is there leave that this matter remain standing? [agreed]

      The honourable acting government House leader, what are your intentions, sir?

Mr. Ernst:  Please call Bills 5, 8 and 10.


Bill 5‑The Northern Affairs Amendment Act


Mr. Speaker:  On the proposed motion of the honourable Minister of Northern and Native Affairs (Mr. Downey), Bill 5, The Northern Affairs Amendment Act; Loi modifiant la Loi sur les affaires du Nord, standing in the name of the honourable member for Radisson (Ms. Cerilli).

An Honourable Member:  Stand.

Mr. Speaker:  Is there leave that this matter remain standing? [agreed]


Bill 8‑The Insurance Amendment Act


Mr. Speaker:  On the proposed motion of the honourable Minister of Consumer and Corporate Affairs (Mrs. McIntosh), Bill 8, The Insurance Amendment Act; Loi modifiant la Loi sur les assurances, standing in the name of the honourable member for Elmwood (Mr. Maloway).

An Honourable Member:  Stand.

Mr. Speaker:  Is there leave that this matter remain standing? [agreed]


Bill 10‑‑The Farm Lands Ownership Amendment

and Consequential Amendments Act


Mr. Speaker:  On the proposed motion of the honourable Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Findlay), Bill 10, The Farm Lands Ownership Amendment and Consequential Amendments Act; Loi modifiant la Loi sur la propriete agricole et apportant des modifications correlatives a d'autres lois, standing the name of the honourable member for Point Douglas (Mr. Hickes).

An Honourable Member:  Stand.

Mr. Speaker:  Is there leave that this matter remain standing? [agreed]

      The honourable acting government House leader, what are your intentions, sir?

Mr. Ernst:  Please, Mr. Speaker, call Bills 11 and 12.


Bill 11‑The Regional Waste Management Authorities, The Municipal Amendment

and Consequential Amendments Act


Mr. Speaker:  On the proposed motion of the honourable Minister of Rural Development (Mr. Derkach), Bill 11, The Regional Waste Management Authorities, The Municipal Amendment and Consequential Amendments Act; Loi concernant les offices regionaux de gestion des dechets, modifiant la Loi sur les municipalites et apportant des modifications correlatives a d'autres lois, standing in the name of the honourable member for the Interlake (Mr. Clif Evans).

An Honourable Member:  Stand.

Mr. Speaker:  Is there leave that this matter remain standing? [agreed]


Bill 12‑The International Trusts Act


Mr. Speaker:  On the proposed motion of the honourable Minister of Justice (Mr. McCrae), Bill 12, The International Trusts Act; Loi sur les fiducies internationales, standing in the name of the honourable member for Swan River (Ms. Wowchuk).

An Honourable Member:  Stand.

Mr. Speaker:  Is there leave that this matter remain standing? [agreed]

Mr. Ernst:  Mr. Speaker, will you call Bills 13, 14 and 15.


Bill 13‑‑The Manitoba Employee Ownership Fund Corporation Amendment Act


Mr. Speaker:  On the proposed motion of the honourable Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism (Mr. Stefanson), Bill 13, The Manitoba Employee Ownership Fund Corporation Amendment Act; Loi modifiant la Loi constituant en corporation le Fonds de participation des travailleurs du Manitoba, standing in the name of the honourable member for St. Boniface (Mr. Gaudry).

Mr. Neil Gaudry (St. Boniface):  Adjourn it for the member for St. James.

Mr. Speaker:  This matter is standing presently in the name of the honourable member for St. Boniface.  Stand?

An Honourable Member:  Stand.

Mr. Speaker:  Is there leave that this matter remain standing? [agreed]

Mr. Paul Edwards (St. James):  Mr. Speaker, I do not intend to speak about the precise details of this piece of legislation, but I do want to speak to the concept and the fund that it establishes in this province.  I think it is an interesting and an important piece of legislation.

      Mr. Speaker, I want to, in particular, focus in on the use of this fund as a vehicle for pensionable savings.  My only concern is that the fund is unduly speculative as a vehicle for pensionable earnings.  The key principle behind pension funds is obviously security of asset value for an individual's retirement years.  One must always be careful, therefore, in terms of the investment vehicle that one uses, because while speculative ventures are important to have within the range of investment opportunities for various investors, generally speaking, someone investing for retirement purposes does not want a speculative investment.  They want a secure investment and are generally prepared to accept less of a return in order to guarantee that return.

      Mr. Speaker, I note that one of the goals of this fund, the Crocus Fund, will be to so‑called save or bring back failing businesses.  Now, that is a very, very important thing to have a fund for.  Is it appropriate as a pension investment?  I am not so sure.  Perhaps at committee we can discuss this in greater detail.  My only concern is that those investing are made completely aware of the risks associated with investing in this fund, that they are completely aware of the type of businesses that this fund is going to invest in, because if they are speculative, if they are not so‑called blue chip investments, then people should know before they invest their pension earnings.

* (1110)

      Mr. Speaker, let it not be misunderstood that I in any way do not support any tool, any mechanism, whereby Manitobans are encouraged to invest in Manitoba businesses.  It is essential if we are going to grow as a province that we find ways, firstly, first and foremost, to get our own people to invest in our province.  It would be nice, of course, to get outsiders to invest in our province, too.  But the first thing and the first problem is that Manitobans are not investing in Manitoba.  That is regrettable.  So, to the extent that this fund can recruit investment within the province for provincial businesses, that is good.

      Mr. Speaker, it is my view and that of my federal counterpart, Mr. Axworthy, the M.P. for Winnipeg South Centre, that it is essential that Manitoba and, indeed, we think the prairie provinces establish a mechanism whereby Manitobans are encouraged to invest in local businesses.

      Mr. Speaker, I know from experience dealing with local companies who want to expand, who want to retool, explore new markets, that they have an awfully difficult time leveraging public investment, because if it is under $10 million that you need, you cannot even get the time of day from the investment brokers in Toronto, on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

      That is the reality.  They do not look at you unless you are floating a bond or a stock offering in excess of $10 million. The fact is that most Manitoba businesses that want to expand, that want to grow or re‑tool, do not need $50 million.  They need $5 million, they need $4 million, they need $8 million.  That is the range, by and large, that we are dealing with in Manitoba.

(Mr. Marcel Laurendeau, Acting Speaker, in the Chair)

      They have a real problem, so how do Manitoba businesses leverage local funds, indeed outside funds, but also local funds?  There are a lot of people in this province, Mr. Acting Speaker, who have money to invest and who do invest.  Where do they invest?  They invest on the Toronto Stock Exchange.  They invest on the New York Stock Exchange.  They invest on the Tokyo Stock Exchange.  Do they invest in Manitoba companies?  No. Why?  Not so much because they do not want to, but because there is not an obvious vehicle that allows them to do that with a reasonable amount of security of return.

      I believe that our companies in Manitoba, home‑grown companies that have stood the test of time in this market, in this community, proven their loyalty to this community‑‑I believe that those companies are good investments.  I believe that Manitobans are willing to invest in those companies and in their future.  We have not made it easy.  In fact, the way the capital markets are structured makes it almost impossible to leverage local money for local business.  Mr. Acting Speaker, that is very unfortunate.  I believe that this government in principle agrees with that point, and so I have been a proponent and continue to be a proponent of a separate stock exchange for the prairie provinces.

      Mr. Acting Speaker, the truth is that there is just not enough of a critical mass in this province to substantiate our own stock exchange.  We just do not have the size required.  But if we were to get together with our neighbours in Saskatchewan and Alberta, I am told by people in the business that we could do it.  I am told that, through establishing a short‑form prospectus, through putting together a reputable securities commission to govern the activities of a prairie stock exchange, we could establish a capital market and a marketplace in this province.

      Mr. Acting Speaker, I for one am a proponent of that type of move.  We need to have a vehicle to attract local investment into local companies.  It cannot be a vehicle which does not allow for a secure return on investment.  Vancouver Stock Exchange has a very high cash flow, very high flow through of capital, but it suffers from a lack of reputation in the world market.

(Mr. Speaker in the Chair)

      Why?  Because it is, by and large, a mining and natural resources based stock market, the result of which is that those companies, those stocks tend to be highly speculative.  You invest in that stock market, by and large, if one is willing to take those types of high risks.  It serves a specialty market, a niche market in Vancouver, but that is not what we are looking for.  What we need is a capital marketplace somewhat like the Toronto market in the sense that it offers high quality investments to local people, obviously much, much smaller, and serving a smaller market in terms of the size of the share offerings, not $100 million, $10 million.  That would serve Manitoba companies better than anything else, Mr. Speaker.

      Now, I must say that with respect to this fund, the Crocus Fund, when I first saw the television ads I was attracted to it. I looked at the potential savings.  The ads claim, spend $1,000, get $800 back.  I think it was the way the advertisements went. That assumes an accumulative tax rate of about 40 percent, so the first 400 out of the 1,000 one gets back under the normal RSP scheme.  Then the provincial and federal governments kicked in another 20 percent tax credit, as I understand it.

      I looked at that because, of course, like most Manitobans I am keen to make investments that save as many tax dollars as possible.  That is the way the system works.  But, Mr. Speaker, when I looked closer I chose not to invest in that fund, and for the very reason that I outlined at the beginning.  My concern is that this fund, by being sold on the mass market as a pension fund, is not adequately telling those potential investors of the risks associated with this fund.  If that was happening then I do not have a problem with it, but education is the key to this. People must know what they are investing in, and they must know and have advice about what the risks are because these are their pension savings.

      Most people when they make pension investments want secure investments above all else.  They will forfeit some of the returns in order to get security because it is a pension savings fund.  It is not for immediate return.  It is for return down the road, 10, 20, 30 years, and, Mr. Speaker, that is a concern which I look forward to some debate on at the committee stage.  I think it is very important that this fund be forthright with potential investors about the risks associated with investment, and be able to provide potential investors with the security of knowledge of what their returns are going to be, and if there is no security of return, then that has to be made clear.  If the return just is not there and cannot be guaranteed at all, then I have some concern about this vehicle of investment as a pension fund.

      As an investment fund it is quite another matter.  If people want to choose investment funds that are risky that is their right.  They get for that, one assumes, a higher potential for return, but that is not the case here.  This is being sold as a pension investment fund.

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      Mr. Speaker, I have spoken about my view of some of the other vehicles we need to attract investment in Manitoba, and I just want to say that I have some sympathy with the government's position about the deficit that it is facing.  I understand that there are financial constraints that are very, very dire in this province.  As I see it, there are basically three ways to deal with that.  One is to increase taxes, and I do not favour that nor does this government.  People are taxed very heavily already.  The other way would be to cut services.  That is the way that this government has chosen to go, thereby reducing the cost of government, hoping to bring expenditures in line with revenues.

      The third way, Mr. Speaker, is to increase the tax base, increase the number of companies and individuals who are paying taxes.  The advantage of that is you do not have to cut services nor do you have to increase taxes, you have a larger base from which to draw.  That is the goal ostensibly of this government and I believe even their predecessors, the NDP‑‑increase the tax base.

      Unfortunately, they both failed.  Quite badly they both failed.  Now, I believe we have to go back to Ed Schreyer as Premier to find a balanced budget in this province.  That is consecutive since that time.  These other two parties really have not found the solution.  I think it has been a long time since Ed Schreyer.  To his credit, I think he had some fiscal responsibility.  You must be fiscally responsible in order to be socially responsible.  This cannot go on forever.  How many decades and decades are we going to allow governments in this province to run large deficits?  How long is it going to go on?

      The surest sign of failure of this government is that the way it has chosen to be fiscally responsible, it says, the way it has had to choose is to hack and slash services.  That is the clearest sign that they have failed, abysmally failed, to increase the tax base, to grow, to recruit investment, to keep investment and to keep people in this province.  They would not have to resort to this if they had had any success doing that. They have failed to increase the tax base.  In fact, it has eroded substantially.

      Investment in this province is still leaving in droves. People are investing all kinds of other places.  Around the globe they are investing.  They are not investing in Manitoba.  Not even our own Manitobans are investing in Manitoba.  That is the legacy not just of this government but of the New Democratic government before them.  They have been totally ineffective at increasing the tax base.

      Who are we losing?  Who are the people who are leaving more often than any other group in our province?  The young people. The young people who have gone through university, the young people who have entrepreneurial drive, who have professional skills, they are leaving.  In droves they are leaving to take up residence in other provinces, in other countries where they raise their children that fill the schools where they earn their incomes and pay taxes.  You have to retain those people if you have any hope of paying for these services into the 21st Century.  That is the fact.  This government has failed to do that.

      What is clearer than anything else is that the fundamental assumptions about financing government are not working.  It is not unique to this province.  They are not working anywhere.

      Mr. Mulroney is running up the deficit faster than any Prime Minister in this country.  He is spending over $5 billion on helicopters.  That is what he is doing.  Is that responsible government?  Kim Campbell, the heir apparent, wants to spend $5 billion on helicopters, Mr. Speaker.

      Our education system is crumbling, our health system is crumbling, our social welfare net is crumbling, and they want to buy helicopters, Mr. Speaker.  It is outrageous, and it is high time we got rid of Mr. Mulroney, and I can hardly wait to do it. If anybody thinks that the former executive assistant to Bill Vander Zalm can save this country, they are sadly mistaken.  The only reason people are swarming to Kim Campbell is that they know nothing about her.  The truth be known, she will be worse than the rest.

      She is prepared, Mr. Speaker, in her wisdom as Defence minister, to squander $5 billion on helicopters when kids in Davis Inlet and around this country cannot get enough help to stop them from committing suicide.  We have a health system and an education system that is turning people away in droves, dooming them to lives of unfulfilled potential.  Is that the kind of country we want to live in?  No.

      Now, Mr. Speaker, this government has not been able to recruit investment.  Worse yet, it has not been able to even retain local investment.  It is time to question the fundamental assumptions that both of these other two tired parties in this House function under.  It is time to look beyond some of the assumptions that they have brought to this House, that extreme positions help us at all.  They do not.

      It is time to start balancing the interests in this community with a view to lasting, just lasting, through the 21st Century with some of the things we all claim are essential, like universal health care, high quality education.  We all compete in this House to see who defends those best, who knows most about those.

      Well, Mr. Speaker, we are losing the forest for the trees. This has been, I believe, and I stand to be corrected, 16 or 17 years in a row that this province has run deficits‑‑in a row. The New Democrats ran deficits of $300 million and $400 million in some of the best years this province ever had.

      What ever happened to the guru of left‑wing politics, Mr. Keynes?  He said, you are supposed to pay it back when times are good.  Did they do that?  No.  They set up things like a Jobs Fund to give people work putting up green signs for 10 weeks so they could get on to UIC.  Did they give them any skills?  Did they give them any lasting hope of a job?  No.

      Mr. Speaker, this party to my right, the New Democratic Party, had one thing in mind‑‑to my physical right‑‑in their entire tenure in government, the next election.  That is all they cared about.  They planned everything for the next election. Power first, foremost and always was the hallmark of that government.

      Mr. Speaker, I want to conclude my comments on this bill by simply‑‑[interjection] Well, the Minister of Natural Resources (Mr. Enns) [interjection] Centre Enns, yes, has just made a very prophetic announcement.  He said, absolute power corrupts absolutely.

      I believe that, and that is why this government was so much better when it was a minority, because since they have become a majority government, they have learned that lesson all too well and shown incredible disdain for not only the rights of members in this House, but for the rights of people in the community, like school trustees, for instance.

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      The arrogance of this government‑‑how would they deal with this?  How would they feel if Ottawa imposed the same type of limitations they have put on school trustees?  They would be jumping up and down day in and day out in this House.  They would never tolerate that usurpation of their power.

      What happened to responsible government?  School trustees are duly elected people in the community, and they face the taxpayer when their turn comes up for election.  The taxpayer questions them.  They have to account for their taxation.

      The arrogance of this government I believe is unmatched in the history of this province.  They want essentially to play big brother all over this province.

      What is next?  What are they going to say next?  Is it going to be city councils and R.M.s next?  Are you going to tell them how to do their job?  What is next?  This is a precedent which is unmatched in its dangerousness to the future of our system, which has a multilevel democratic process at work.

      Mr. Speaker, the fact is they would never tolerate this type of incursion into their powers.  The fact is this majority government believes it can do anything.  They believe that they can ride roughshod over the democratic rights of democratically elected school trustees.

      I had some discussions with some members of the St. James‑Assiniboia school board, not exactly a school board leaning toward my political persuasion.  I had some discussions with them this morning.  They accepted and understood, of course, because they are loyal Conservatives, most of them, that there were some serious financial constraints, and the government had to do what the government had to do.

      But you know what?  They, even they‑‑


Point of Order


Hon. Jim Ernst (Acting Government House Leader):  Mr. Speaker, on a point of order, I would ask you to comment on the relevance of the speech of the member for St. James.

      They were talking about the employee ownership act.  He is talking about something totally different.

Mr. Reg Alcock (Osborne):  Mr. Speaker, I have listened very carefully to what the member for St. James (Mr. Edwards) is saying about this.  He is talking about a fund that is purported to play a role in the management of businesses, so he is talking about management.  He is talking about the principles of management and how we manage in this province on behalf of all people in the province.  So I think his remarks are exactly relevant to the question.

Mr. Speaker:  On the point of order raised, I would like to remind all honourable members that the question before the House at this point in time is The Manitoba Employee Ownership Fund Corporation Amendment Act.

      I believe the honourable member for St. James has been quite relevant.  He has digressed a little bit at this point in time, and I would ask the honourable member to get himself back on track.

* * *

Mr. Edwards:  I will just finish off this point and then move on.

      Just to finish off the point, the fact is, in my discussions this morning with those school trustees, they were offended by this government's lack of willingness to respect their democratic right as elected people in their community to manage their little portion of the taxation system and to account to the public after they have done that for what they have done.  They are willing to do that.

      They could have said, listen, this takes the heat off.  Now we do not have to answer the taxpayers because the provincial government has forced us to do that.  That might have been the politically smart thing for them to say, but they have not; they have accepted their responsibility to the taxpayer.

      Mr. Speaker, with respect to the bill at hand, I think it is important that the government accept its role and responsibility in this province to do more than hack and slash and play big brother around this province.  They have totally failed, totally, to attract outside investment.  They have totally failed to even retain investment of Manitobans in Manitoba.  That is why the tax base is shrinking.  That is why they have to hack and slash, because they have had absolutely no success at even retaining our own Manitobans to stay in Manitoba and raise their families and pay taxes.  They have failed abysmally.

      The biggest group of people leaving this province are under 25 years of age, the people who should be staying in this province if we had a future for them.  If this government held out any hope for those people, we would not be losing them. [interjection] Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Energy and Mines (Mr. Downey) points out, where are they going?  Well, you know what? He points to other provinces that are having problems too, but you know what?  Nobody is doing worse than Manitoba.  All the way down the line, this government claims the recession, the recession, it is worldwide.

      As my colleague the member for Osborne (Mr. Alcock) pointed out last session, and it continues to be true, you can go down the line on the economic indicators.  These guys finish last all the way down the line.  We are worse off‑‑[interjection] The member for Portage la Prairie (Mr. Pallister) says, unemployment.  I am glad he raised that.  How many people have left this province, Mr. Speaker?  Why do you think our unemployment is low?  Because they are not staying here.  They are leaving in droves from places like Portage la Prairie.  They are leaving.  The young people are leaving.

      In rural Manitoba, where that member comes from and should know better, that is where they are leaving the most.  Those are the communities that are hurting the most.  It is the rural‑‑


Point of Order


Hon. Harry Enns (Minister of Natural Resources):  Mr. Speaker, I noticed you were listening intently to the honourable member for St. James' (Mr. Edwards) remarks.  I just want to remind you not to take him too seriously.

Mr. Speaker:  The honourable minister does not have a point of order.  The honourable member for St. James, to carry on with his remarks.

* * *

Mr. Edwards:  The minister proves his point as to why the members should not be taken seriously, Mr. Speaker.  He lives that every day.

      I know I have said this before in these comments, but I do want to conclude my comments on this issue by simply highlighting the fact that if this province is going to be able to pay for these services that this side and the other side say we all defend‑‑education and health care and social services and that‑‑these people have no solutions.

      I believe that the next budget will show the deficits in this province are going to be higher than they have ever been before. As a sorry excuse for their failure, they are resorting to crass political opportunism.  They are starting to slash these agencies that they know full well do very good work, and they are doing it, they are slashing agencies.  Why?  Because they are playing to a constituency that does not use those services.  The people they are playing to do not need the friendship centres or the antipoverty league.  That is why they are being cut.

      What about all the corporate grants?  What about all those millions and millions and millions of dollars we were going to give to Repap, we were going to spend on corporate investment? What about those?  What about $25,000 to AECL, all of those monies?

      I know the member for Lac du Bonnet (Mr. Praznik), mostly what he needs in his life is to hand out a cheque a week in his constituency, and I believe, Mr. Speaker, whether it is $2,500 or $25,000 that has got to happen.  I am very, very saddened to see that the member for Portage la Prairie (Mr. Pallister) seems to have taken on the old mantle of the member for Lac du Bonnet, standing up, playing into the hands of his Premier (Mr. Filmon) on a regular basis.  That is not why the people elected him. They elected him to have a mind of his own.  I want to tell him now, he does not have to do that.  He cannot be forced, as a member of this Legislature, to stand up and take it on the chin for everything his Premier does.

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      The people of Portage la Prairie expect more from their member.  The one thing about the former member, whether you agreed or disagreed with him, he had his own mind.  That is for sure.  When he felt something was wrong or right, he said so.  He stood up in this House beside me and questioned his own minister when he knew that his constituents' interests were best served by those questions.  He was no lap dog, Mr. Speaker.  He stood up for the people of Portage la Prairie. [interjection]

      Mr. Speaker, I see I have hit a sore spot with the member, and I would welcome him standing up and putting some comments on the record.  Ninety‑nine percent of what he has said in this House is off the record.  Why does he not stand up and put something on the record?  People want to be able to read what he says.  He does not need to ask these people in the front row before he stands up and makes some comments.  It is time to do it.  It is time to put his comments on the record.

      We are all equal in this House.  Nobody can tell him what to do.  He can stand up, and he should stand up, and if he is making comments from his seat I welcome them.  That is fair ball, but I think he should put them on the record.  I think his constituents would want him to put them on the record.  There are all kinds of bills here.  Lots of opportunity to talk about the interests of the people from Portage la Prairie.  Do you ever hear from the member?  No, Mr. Speaker.

      Again, I would be pleased to hear from these members.  I just wish they would put something on the record.  I mean, we can throw things around this House, that is one thing, but you know, the point of accountability, which this government does not seem to understand, is that you put things on the record so people can measure what you have done, can judge what you have done.

      These members of the back bench in the Conservative caucus, I believe, have lots to say.  Why do they not say it?  They represent constituencies around this province that have very, very serious problems.  They have depopulation running rampant in rural Manitoba, lack of investment, a farming community on its death bed in many corners of this province.

      The rural economy is suffering around this province, and what do these members do?  They sit silent.  They let the people in the front row do the talking.  Well, they are not here just to sit and stand up when they are told to.  They are here to do a job.

      Mr. Speaker, this bill is a bill which I will want, and I know the member for Osborne (Mr. Alcock) will want, to question. The member for Inkster (Mr. Lamoureux) I think will also want to comment on it in committee‑‑the adequacy of the notice to the people of this province in terms of the security of the investment.

      It is not enough just to sell this investment as a lucrative investment in terms of the immediate tax advantage.  There must be adequate education of the prospective purchasers of these RRSPs about the real risks of purchase, and the small print is not enough.  This fund must be prepared to be up‑front about what it is investing in and the security or insecurity of the investment.  That is my only concern about this fund.

      I am pleased about any fund that attempts with government assistance to recruit internal investment.  I am.  But, Mr. Speaker, these are pension savings.  This is not a short‑term investment people are making.  When people buy pensionable investments, they are doing it with a view to the long term. They want security of return, and this fund is not as secure, does not offer a secure return, as many, many others in the marketplace.  It offers much higher immediate returns in terms of tax savings, but the tradeoff for that must be made clear.

      So, Mr. Speaker, I want to conclude my comments by indicating that we will have some questions at the committee on this act. More importantly, we will have questions about the way this government thinks it can govern this province.

      By casting aside parliamentary convention, casting aside democratic principles about accountability of different levels of government, the arrogance of this government will come home to haunt it, Mr. Speaker.  I believe that.  There is no crisis of the moment worthy of the incursions into other levels of government that this government is proposing, worthy of the breaching of democratic principle because of the incompetence of the government and its inability to come forward with a budget. There is no excuse for that.

      Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Speaker:  As previously agreed, this matter will remain standing in the name of the honourable member for St. Boniface (Mr. Gaudry).


Bill 14‑The Personal Property Security

and Consequential Amendments Act


Mr. Speaker:  On the proposed motion of the honourable Minister of Justice (Mr. McCrae), Bill 14, The Personal Property Security and Consequential Amendments Act; Loi concernant les suretes relatives aux biens personnels et apportant des modifications correlatives a d'autres lois, standing in the name of the honourable member for Thompson (Mr. Ashton).

An Honourable Member:  Stand.

Mr. Speaker:  Stand?  Is there leave that this matter remain standing? [agreed]


Bill 15‑The Boxing and Wrestling Commission Act


Mr. Speaker:  On the proposed motion of the honourable Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism (Mr. Stefanson), Bill 15, The Boxing and Wrestling Commission Act; Loi sur la Commission de la boxe et de la lutte, standing in the name of the honourable member for Interlake (Mr. Clif Evans).

An Honourable Member:  Stand.

Mr. Speaker:  Stand?  Is there leave that this matter remain standing? [agreed]

      The honourable deputy government House leader, what are your intentions, sir?

Hon. Darren Praznik (Deputy Government House Leader):  I would ask that you call the proposed motion of the honourable Minister of Finance (Mr. Manness).

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Point of Order


Mr. Kevin Lamoureux (Second Opposition House Leader):  Mr. Speaker, I know the government's urgency in terms of trying to deal with Bill 16.  Are they not wanting to call Bill 16?

Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.  The honourable deputy government House leader has called the proposed motion of the honourable Minister of Finance (Mr. Manness).

Mr. Praznik:  Mr. Speaker, I can indicate that we would be prepared to call it if the member for River Heights (Mrs. Carstairs) would indicate her agreement to wrap up her remarks on that particular bill.

Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.  I believe the discussion that is taking place at this time would serve our time in this Chamber better if House leaders could make that sort of agreement outside of the Chamber.




Mr. Speaker:  Presently, I have been asked to call debate on the proposed motion of the honourable Minister of Finance (Mr. Manness), that this House at this sitting will resolve itself into a Committee to consider of the Supply to be granted to Her Majesty, standing in the name of the honourable Leader of the second opposition party.

Mrs. Sharon Carstairs (Leader of the Second Opposition):  Mr. Speaker, as I was pleased to join in this debate yesterday, I am equally prepared to join in this debate today, as I will be on Monday and Tuesday and Wednesday and Thursday and Friday of next week on this particular motion.

      The motion is that at this sitting, the House will resolve itself into the Committee to consider of the Supply to be granted to Her Majesty, and those of you who were in the House yesterday afternoon‑‑

Some Honourable Members:  Oh, oh.

Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.

Mrs. Carstairs:  Thank you, Mr. Speaker.  The question before us is an important one in terms of parliamentary tradition.

      As I indicated yesterday, and I took the members through the evolution of Parliament and parlement, first of all the Magna Carta, the great charter of 1215, and the Petition of Right of 1628 and the Bill of Rights of 1689 and the reform acts of 1837, 1867 and 1884.

      I showed them how the whole concept of Supply was directly attached to the right of Parliament, because that is and was the entire purpose for the formulation of Parliament, so that they could, rather than the king or the queen, as the case might be, grant Supply, and that this evolution through the historical traditions became such that only Parliament could grant Supply.

      Not only in Great Britain was that tradition brought to us through an evolving process, but it was also brought to us, this concept of Supply and the concept of Parliament, in an evolving process in Canada as well.  I think that not only should the members be aware of how we inherited this tradition from the Mother of Parliaments in Great Britain, but also how we inherited that tradition through the slowly evolving parliamentary process here in Canada.

      Those of you of course who know and understand Canadian history know that the first settlers to Canada came via various migrations to this nation.  You know, we frequently get into a debate as to whether Canada was discovered.  Was it discovered by the Vikings in the 9th Century?  Or was it discovered by Giovanni Caboto, or John Cabot, as many of us learned in our early history books, but of course he was an Italian who sailed for England so they in fact changed his name to the English‑sounding John Cabot as opposed to the Italian essence of his name, Giovanni Caboto.

      So the arrival of John Cabot on our shores in 1497 in Newfoundland and the arrival of Jacques Cartier in the settlements of Hochelaga and Stadacona in 1534, '35, '37, those particular evolutions were such that we had the bringing to this nation of an English parliamentary tradition and also a French system which, of course, was the original concept of the word "parliament" because it came from the French "parlement," to speak.

      When the French of course first settled in Canada and first brought their heritage to Nova Scotia and not‑‑like many Canadians believed that the heritage was first brought to the province of Quebec, that is historically inaccurate.  The first settlement of Samuel de Champlain was not in the province of Quebec, it was at Annapolis Royal in Nova Scotia in 1605.  He did not in fact go to Quebec until some three years later in 1608.

      The evolution of the government of what we now refer to as the province of Quebec had a French tradition and not an English tradition but, interestingly enough, even in that tradition there was a tradition of Supply.

      That is the motion that we are debating today, the imposition of Supply.  In the early French settlement days, there were in fact a triumvirate of governing for the territory known as Quebec.  They got their authority from the king of France, who, like the Stuarts that I referred to yesterday, had the concept of absolute monarchy.  I quoted yesterday the tradition of a Bossuet for James Stuart, James I of England and James VI of Scotland.

      A similar phrase comes to mind, of course, with the Sun King in France who ruled in the early days of the foundation of Canada, and he always used the phrase "l'etat c'est moi."  I am the state; I have full and absolute authority.  Well, that was part of the Bourbon monarchy, and just as we learned that the English king, Charles I, was beheaded in 1649 because he refused to recognize the rights of people, ultimately, of course, Louis XVI successor Louis XVIII was sent to the guillotine because he too failed to recognize that the people within the society also have rights.

      It is ultimately the people in that society who get to determine issues like Supply, because either they do it directly or they do it through their elected representatives.  The issue of Supply is granted by those of us who sit in this Chamber, and that is where our heritage and our tradition comes.

      Mr. Speaker, the governing triumvirate of New France, if you will, was made up of the intendant, who was to look after the economic affairs, much like our Minister of Finance is supposed to look after the affairs of finance in the Province of Manitoba today.  It is his motion on Supply that we are debating so eloquently, I hope, today.  The intendant looked after fiscal matters.  The governor, who, in some respects, reflects the will of the Premier, looked after all those affairs other than issues of finance.  Then we had the bishop, because all of the population was not only French but Roman Catholic.  He got to look after the affairs of the Church.  But even they had to have a council.

      That council, and only that council, could determine matters of Supply, matters of Supply that were related to the collection of taxes, of the imposition of those same taxes.  So therefore comes into our parliamentary tradition not only the British parliamentary tradition, but also the French parliamentary tradition.  We know that in 1759 the French were defeated in the Battle of the Plains of Abraham, and that led to the imposition of government in Canada to primarily come from the British parliamentary tradition.  We must also remember that, while that happened, it was not an unknown concept to those who lived in New France.  They also understood the concept of having to have some participatory role in deciding matters of finance and matters of Supply.

      It was some years between 1759‑‑even though there were certain rights granted to those in Great Britain, responsible and representative government was slow to come to Canada.  The first example of representative government to Canada, so that there was any authority taken from the governor, is again a legacy of the province of Nova Scotia, because in 1758, the first representative government was granted to this nation in the province of Nova Scotia.  The first settlement in Nova Scotia, I had indicated to you just a few minutes earlier, Mr. Speaker, was the Annapolis Royal settlement of Samuel de Champlain, but it was not a successful long‑term settlement of people.

      The next settlement in fact, in terms of Nova Scotian history, was at the fort of Louisbourg.  It was the fort of Louisbourg which, for many who perhaps do not know their geography of Canada too well‑‑the Nova Scotia peninsula literally juts out into the Atlantic, and the tip that juts out at its northernmost end is the island of Cape Breton, now also in itself a peninsula because a causeway has been built between that island and the mainland to Nova Scotia.  At the fort of Louisbourg, it acted as a fortress for entrance into the St. Lawrence, so it could warn very quickly those who were in New France that ships of a foreign nationality, particularly Britain, were coming and entering into the St. Lawrence seaway.

      The British realized that they too should have some presence in Nova Scotia, so in 1749, they founded the city of Halifax. The people who came to Halifax, mostly from Britain, but some Germans, interestingly enough, who settled around the Lunenburg‑Liverpool area, were unhappy with the lack of their participatory ability in the affairs of the nation.  So nine short years after the city of Halifax had been founded by Cornwallis, they demanded that they have representative government.  The issue is an issue that should not surprise anybody in this Chamber.  The issue was, could the governor of the city of Halifax and the colony of Halifax impose Supply, impose taxation, impose the collection of levies without the authority given to him by some representative of the people.

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      So representative government came to Canada for the first time in the province of Nova Scotia in 1758, but it was not until much later than that that responsible government actually came to Canada.  Responsible government is a concept which is, quite frankly, far more important than just representative government, because to have responsible government means that not only do you not only have to have representatives, but that those representatives in turn must be responsible to the people.

      We know that there were rebellions in Canada in 1837 both in Upper Canada and in Lower Canada, basically centered in the area of Toronto in Upper Canada and in Montreal in Lower Canada. Those rebellions led to the arrival in Canada of Lord Durham. Lord Durham decided, in his wisdom, that what was absolutely essential for Canada, or the Canada that he was there to represent, that of Old and New France and that of Upper Canada, that there had to be a development of what exactly was responsible government.

      I think it is important that he recognized that one of the most important concepts of responsible government was the right of the people to be represented in issues of taxation, that in issues of taxation and the levying of taxation, in not only taxation but the expenditures of government, that the people had to have the right to participate.  They had to be given the authority, the time, the energy, to devote to the examination of those new taxation regulations.  They had to be given the time, the authority, to investigate the expenditure programs of government.

      That is why we today have Supply motions, that we go into Supply so that the governing party can present their plan, if you will, their list of expenditures, and the opposition parties can examine those lists of expenditures in detail.  That is what the Supply motion is all about.  That is why the Minister of Finance (Mr. Manness) has requested that this House deal with the concept of Supply, that we go into Supply.  That, Mr. Speaker, is why we are preventing this motion at this particular point in time, because we have not been given the information with which we can deal with a Supply motion in the legitimate fashion which has been the legacy of our ancestry in the whole concept and evolution of responsible government.

      I think it is interesting, Mr. Speaker, that one of the first test cases on responsible government was an issue which is not all that different than the issue that we are dealing with, I would suggest to you, in the House today.  In 1849, there came the very first test of responsible government.  It was called the Rebellion Losses bill.  The purpose of the bill was to compensate people in Canada East, which had formerly been known as Lower Canada, who had suffered property damage during the rebellion of 1837.

      The rebellion of 1837, the Tories charged that the rebels would be among those receiving money, and thus would be paid for their past disloyalty.

      Now that is a very interesting question because what the parliamentarians of the day were asked to debate in terms of a motion of Supply‑‑because that is what it was‑‑was if people caused a rebellion and in their very act of causing that rebellion they had undertaken a disloyal act, should they receive compensation for the fact that their houses were destroyed or that they might have lost a loved one, or that they may have suffered physical injury as a result of the rebellion that had taken place in 1837?

      Lord Elgin, who was the governor of the time and, interestingly enough, the son‑in‑law of Lord Durham, indicated that he had a tough time with the wisdom of this bill.  He knew that trouble might result if he passed the Rebellion Losses Bill, but he decided that he had to sign it anyway because he was following, he said, the advice of his ministers who had submitted the bill to the Assembly, and where the bill had duly passed.

      Now the question here is a critical one.  If Lord Elgin had taken the decision, as perhaps our Lieutenant‑Governor could take now because he occupies much the same position as Lord Elgin did at this particular point in time.  He receives notification that a bill on Supply has been passed by the Assembly.

      He receives notice that his ministers of the Crown are in favour of this particular bill‑‑otherwise, they would not have introduced it‑‑and the Governor‑General, or a Lieutenant‑Governor in a province, duly decrees that he will not sign this into law.

      We still have the custom, and those of you who have been here the closing night of sessions know that the Speaker comes in and moves out of his seat in order for the Lieutenant‑Governor to move in to that particular seat, and all of the bills are read by title to the Lieutenant‑Governor.  At that point, the Lieutenant‑Governor gives consent.

      Now we know that consent today is more form than substance. We know that Lieutenant‑Governors have not refused bills, particularly of Supply nature, for a very long time.  But the moment that they could no longer do that, I would suggest, on the basis of the evolution of custom and precedence and convention in this country, was that they made this decision in 1849.

      Lord Elgin very judiciously and very carefully said, I have no choice.  I must accept the opinion of those duly elected to the Parliament of Canada, duly elected to the Legislature at that time, which sat in Kingston, duly‑elected people to represent their constituents.  And, in their representing those constituents, and in the theory of responsible government, the governor did not have the authority or the right or the opportunity to deviate in any way, shape or form from the authority that had, by convention, been given to the people.

      Mr. Speaker, the evolution of our parliamentary system continues, and, of course, we find that evolutionary parliamentary tradition found very carefully in the British North America Act, which became our constitution for the first 100 years plus of Canadian parliamentary life.

      The British North America Act was an act which was passed in Great Britain in 1867, because we could not establish that act ourselves.  We were not a country, and without being a country we could not possibly establish a constitution.

      We took a step quite different from that taken in the United States where, in the period between 1783 and 1789, you had a series of meetings with the 13 colonies and their colonial representatives.  They came up with a constitution in 1789, which, then in turn, each one of the then colonies, soon to be known as states, ratified.

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(Mr. Ben Sveinson, Acting Speaker, in the Chair)

      We took a different approach.  We said that because our tradition is parliamentary, and we want it to remain parliamentary, and because the Mother of our Parliament is indeed the Parliament of Great Britain, then we will go to the Parliament of Great Britain.  We will ask them to pass an act, which became known as the British North America Act, which will in fact set up the constitutional legal authorities of the governing of this nation.

      It is also interesting to note, of course, Mr. Acting Speaker, that the British North America Act did not give Canada complete power over all aspects of its life.  We did not get control, for example, over our external affairs until 1931 and the Statute of Westminster.

      We had control over our internal affairs, and one of those very critical areas of which we got control over our external affairs in 1867 was in the whole issue of Supply.  The issue of Supply was addressed in several places in the British North America Act, but particularly in Sections 91 and 92, because it was in Sections 91 and 92 that we outlined the authority and powers of the provinces.

      It talked about, in 91, the powers of Parliament.  When they referred to the powers of Parliament in this particular section, they were referring to it, and I shall read from Section 91:  It shall be lawful for the Queen, by and with the advice and the consent of the Senate and the House of Commons, to make laws for the peace, order and good government of Canada in relation to all matters not coming within the classes of subjects that this act assigned exclusively to the Legislatures of the provinces; and

      For greater certainty, but not so as to restrict the generality of the foregoing terms of this section, it is hereby declared that notwithstanding anything in this act, the exclusive legislative authority of the Parliament of Canada extends to all matters coming within the classes of subjects next hereinafter remunerated.

      Mr. Acting Speaker, what do we see at the very top of this list?  We see Section 1(a), The public debt and property.  We then go on to see that they have the right to issue and establish interest rates and legal tender, that they have the right to establish currency and coinage.  We see that they have the right to establish savings banks, that they have the right to incorporate banks, that they have the right to impose a criminal law.

      What we have, in essence, is the right of the Parliament of Canada to deal with Supply, but that is not the only group.  That is not the only level of government that is given some control over the ability to implement and to give to a governing authority the right to deal with Supply because one also has to look at the powers which are given to the provinces in Section 92.  In Section 92 of the British North America Act, which has now been taken in its entirety into the Canada Act, in each province, the Legislature may exclusively make laws in relation to matters coming within the classes of subject next hereinafter enumerated, that is to say, direct taxation within the province in order to the raising of a revenue for provincial purposes.

      So the province was also given the authority within its jurisdiction to raise revenue and to make expenditures on behalf of people living within that provincial jurisdiction.  That is the basis upon which the issue of Supply came to the provinces in 1867.

      What we have, Mr. Acting Speaker, in terms of the Supply motions therefore is the ability of a provincial government to introduce Supply, and so we do not question as a party in this Chamber their ability to introduce Supply, but we do question in this Chamber the way in which the Supply motion is being introduced in this particular session of the Legislature.

      I mentioned yesterday that the Minister of Finance (Mr. Manness) met with the House leader for the Liberal Party, as I understand he did with the House leader of the New Democratic Party, and he indicated, of course, that he had some very serious problems in presenting the budget as quickly as he had hoped to present the budget.  He said that the information which had come to him from the federal government with respect to the cutback in transfer payments would make it difficult for him to present the budget that he had originally planned.

(Mr. Speaker in the Chair)

      We have some difficulty with that, because we do know that the Minister of Finance had knowledge of this change in federal government policy as early as December and, in having that knowledge, we do not quite understand why at that particular point the Minister of Finance did not, with his cabinet colleagues and Treasury Board, develop a best case, worst case scenario.  We understand he did not do that, or perhaps he did and did not get it completed, because we are not privy obviously to the goings on of Treasury Board, but we do know that he told us that he was unable to present a budget.

      Now, we find that somewhat ironic because yesterday we had the presentation of two provincial budgets, one in the province of Newfoundland and one in the province of Saskatchewan, and both of those provinces were affected by the federal cutbacks in exactly the same way the province of Manitoba was affected.  They seemed to be able to get their act together by yesterday in the presentation of their budget, and we find it deeply regrettable that the Minister of Finance of this province, with exactly the same kind of information available to him, was not able to get on with the presentation of his budget.

      In his discussions and debates with the House leaders of both the official opposition and the second opposition party, he indicated he could not do this and that he wanted to introduce Estimates in a piecemeal basis and that he was in the first instance prepared to introduce the Estimates of Highways and Family Services and gradually that became extended to Agriculture when he recognized apparently that Highways may not use as much time on one side of the Chamber or in the sitting of the second room within which we debate Estimates, as would the Estimates of Family Services.  He wanted to keep both Chambers equally occupied, so he was prepared to also give us the Estimates of the Department of Agriculture.

      As soon as it was possible for us to raise our objections to this, Mr. Speaker, we did so last Friday.  The member for Inkster (Mr. Lamoureux) rose on a matter of privilege.  We rose on a matter of privilege on the basis of the fact that we believed quite honestly, and I think in an honourable way, that we felt that our privileges as members of this Chamber had been violated.

      You, Mr. Speaker, took that under advisement and you took a look at your references and you dealt with references with respect to notice.  We grant that that was quite a legitimate ruling that the government of the day did not require notice to introduce the motion other than the notice motion which they had put on the Order Paper on the Wednesday.

      We are still concerned with the other aspect, however, not just on the notice of motion.  That other aspect is the actual fact of the notice of motion or of the motion itself, not in violation of our parliamentary rights and traditions.

      I would like to deal, Mr. Speaker, with the citations that you yourself used in your analysis of the judgment last week. You cited the first one as being one in 1883, and so I asked my research staff to learn just what that citation indeed was.  I learned with great interest that that citation had to do only with the rules of the House.  It had nothing to do, of course, with the Estimates process and the way in which Estimates were brought in.

      I would like to read to the members just a brief reference from that ruling of 1883.  It says:  Ordered that the 78th rule of this House as to the selection of committees be suspended and that the special committee to whom has been referred the said paragraph be composed of Messrs. Blake, Ross, McCarthy, et cetera, and then the House adjourned till Monday next.

      What happened as a result of that particular reference, of course, was that it was allowed that they would suspend the rules of the House on the fact of the message that had been brought, and it is interesting, because nobody in the House objected. They did not question that this was going to be an imposition on their parliamentary rights and traditions, and I can understand perhaps why, because it certainly had nothing to do with their function.  They had apparently got an all‑party agreement that this would go forward.

      That was not the case with respect to the motion that had been introduced on the Supply motion.

      The second one which the Speaker made reference to was in 1898.  In this case, it was ordered that all rules and orders of this House be suspended as regards a bill to amend the act of the present session, entitled An Act to Incorporate the London and Lake Huron Railway Company and that Mr. Lister have leave to bring in the bill respecting the London and Lake Huron Railway Company.

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      Well, interestingly enough, Mr. Speaker, yet once again we see that there is total unanimity in the House of the day in the suspension of those rules so that there can be the immediate debate.  Obviously there was an interest in this particular bill, an interest on the part of every single member of this Chamber, an interest on the part that all of them get on with the establishment of the Lake Huron and London Railway Company.  So with that kind of unanimity, since the rules of the House applied to all members of that Chamber, there was complete agreement that they would forthwith agree to suspend the rules of the House.

      Again, I would suggest to the members of this House, that is not the case in this Chamber.  There are seven members of this party, the Liberal Party, who sit in this Chamber, members who received, I would suggest to you, only .65 percent less of the popular vote than was received by the New Democratic Party in the last election campaign.  Despite the fact that they managed to send 20 people to this Chamber, it cannot be argued that they represent any more electors out there in terms of the popular vote than we represent in this Chamber.  So we have‑‑[interjection]

      I have always believed in proportional representation.  The member for Burrows (Mr. Martindale) asks that question.  As he will note, if he ever gets around to reading my book, I make some reference to that in my book, about the need for proportional representation.

      In terms of the next reference, it was a ruling on Thursday, the 8th of April of 1948.  That one, interestingly enough, the House resumed the adjourned debate on the proposed motion of Mr. St. Laurent for Mr. Mackenzie King that notwithstanding any other order passed by the House in relation thereto, and after Thursday, the 8th of April and every day thereafter, until otherwise ordered during the present session, government notices of motions and government orders shall have precedence over other business except the introduction of bills, questions by members and notices of motions for the production of paper, and from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Fridays private bills.

      Well, again, Mr. Speaker, it is quite interesting, of course, that this particular motion was to make the function more efficient within the House.  We would suggest that again. However, this had nothing to do with Estimates, nothing whatever to do with the Supply bill, nothing whatever to do with a government wanting to do away with the tradition which abrogates the rights of opposition members in this Chamber.

      The fourth citation which was made reference to by the Speaker was in the Journals, No. 89, in the year 1961.  This will, I am sure, be of some interest, particularly to the member for Lakeside (Mr. Enns), because this was a motion introduced, quite frankly, by Mr. Diefenbaker.  It was introduced by Mr. Diefenbaker, seconded by Mr. Churchill, moved that commencing on May 1 and on every sitting day thereafter until the end of this session, the hours of sitting shall be as follows:  Monday and Tuesday, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., 2:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. to 10 p.m., except that when a Supply motion is being considered in accordance with Standing Order 56, the hours of sitting shall be set out by Standing Orders 2 and 6, namely, 2:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. to 10 p.m.

      It then goes on to give the hours for Wednesday, the hours for Thursday, the hour of Friday, and to the provisions of Standing Orders 2 and 3 be suspended in relation thereto.  Well, there was a movement to amend that motion, that the motion be amended, adding additional hours.  It was ordered that provisions of the same orders be dealt with, and the vote appears again to have been made with some equanimity, some agreement among the members of this Chamber, or the Chamber of the day, being the Parliament of Canada.  So we have a ruling which appears to have met the needs and the objectives and the passion and the rights and responsibilities of the member of the Chamber of the day.  We are dealing with quite a different issue.

      Finally, the third citation which the Speaker referenced was Thursday, the 14th of May, 1964.  This one, interestingly enough, deals with motions which are in the interests, again, of the members of the Chamber on a motion by Mr. Favreau, seconded by Mr. McNaught (phonetic):  It was resolved that on Friday next, the hours of sitting shall be from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. without interruption; and, when the House adjourns that day, it shall stand adjourned until Tuesday, May 19, 1964, at 2:30 p.m., and that in relation thereto the provisions of Standing Orders 2 and 6 be suspended.

      So, yet, once again, Mr. Speaker, we have changes to the rules which, for the most part, got all‑party consent, unanimous consent of the Chamber, changes to the rules that had absolutely nothing to do with Supply, nothing to do with our ability to debate the motion that is before us now and will be before us, if indeed, this motion passes.

      I would suggest to you that this motion in and of itself is an extremely dangerous motion.  It is an extremely dangerous motion not in and of itself, because this motion will be made over and over and over again as long as Supply comes before us. It is a dangerous motion because of what would happen to this Chamber if this motion passed.  If this motion passed and the subsequent Ways and Means motion, if they bring it, and the subsequent further motion of the tabling of Estimates, what will happen is that the government in this Chamber will table only three Estimates.

      It will not table the Main Estimates book, which has been a part and parcel of the Supply motion, I would suggest to this Chamber, since the days of 1689 and the Bill of Rights in Great Britain, that it is a Supply motion that lays before parliamentarians of whatever their stripe, whatever their political allegiance and whatever House that they are located in.  It brings into the Parliament or the Legislature the Supply motion in its entirety so that, when we have a Supply motion on Estimates, it is not the cherry‑picking of Estimates, it is, in fact, all Estimates.

      Mr. Speaker, I find it interesting that when I took a look at the history of the formulation of Estimates, I came across some very interesting references.  I am sure that many of the members of this Chamber who took degrees in political science‑‑and I know there are a great many‑‑probably used as their text or they certainly had as one of their reading assignments R. McGregor Dawson's The Government of Canada.  This is a foreknown text. Certainly, it was the text that I had when I studied government of Canada back in 1959 at Dalhousie University in Halifax. McGregor Dawson was considered the expert on Canadian government.  Well, McGregor Dawson is no longer alive, but Norman Ward continues to update his books, and they continue to be a recognized text for the study of Canadian government and politics.

      We have a reference in here to how the Treasury Board goes about formulating its Estimates.  It says that the development of Estimates through Treasury Board is often a rather fractious process, that the ministers of the day sit around the table trying‑‑

Mr. Speaker:  Order, please.  This matter will remain standing in the name of the honourable Leader of the second opposition party.

      The hour being 12:30 p.m., the House is now adjourned and stands adjourned until 1:30 p.m., Monday.