February 22, 1901

CON

Charles Hibbert Tupper

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir CHARLES HIBBERT TUPPER.

1 am certain the feeling in Canada would justify the additional expense that would be incurred in patronizing what would certainly be a new industry on the coast, or anything like an attempt to build a seagoing ship, iron or steel, and to assist in that respect. It would be a mere bagatelle so far as the government is concerned. Those enterprising are risking their own capital in an effort to make a test, at any rate, whether the country can sustain such an enterprise ; and I feel sure, without having directly communicated with any one, that the spirit of the country is such to-day the people would be delighted, in every quarter of Canada, not only to see this enterprise successfully started, but to give credit to the government for any share they had in assisting in such a way to develop that industry.

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CON

William Humphrey Bennett

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BENNETT.

I notice on page P-144 of the Auditor General's Report, a reference to a steam barge called the Shamrock, purchased at a price of $21,500. May I ask the minister where that craft is, from whom she was purchased, and what use she was put to ?

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The MINISTER OF MARINE AND FISHERIES.

She was purchased for the Montreal buoy service, as I explained last year. Previously to that the Montreal buoy service had been let by contract, and had been, carried on by contract. But it did not give satisfaction. The boards of trade and the shipping industries of Montreal insisted that there should be better buoy service, and the government had to take it over and carry it on themselves. A ship was bought from Mr. Kane, I think the name was-the facts are not as fresh in my mind as they were last year when I gave the House all the information about it.

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CON
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The MINISTER OF MARINE AND FISHERIES.

At the time she was bought, over a year ago.

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CON

William Humphrey Bennett

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BENNETT.

I call the minister's at-tetnion to the fact that in the Auditor General's Report it would seem that on the

17th of November, 1900, that gentleman took exception to the fact that the boat had been purchased without a compliance with the Audit Act, section 33. I will use his own words as they occur on page P-144 of the report:

Auditor General's Office,

Ottawa, November 17, 1900. Sir,-With reference to your letter of February 27 last, informing me that the minister and deputy minister personally examined into the value of the steam barge Shamrock. I beg to say that unless the deputy minister has the necessary technical knowledge in the construction of ships, his certificate would not be such as to fulfil the requirements of section 33* of the Audit Act.

1 have the honour to be, sir,

Your obedient servant,

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J. L. McDOUGALL, A.G.


The Acting Deputy Minister of Marine and Fisheries. Now, I am not aware whether last year there was a special vote of this amount of $21,500 for the purchase of this craft. If there was, I have no recollection of it, and if there was not a special grant, then 1 presume the money which paid for the craft was taken out of the general grant, and if it was taken out of the general grant, what was done in face of this objection on the part of the Auditor Generai to the payment ?


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The MINISTER OF MARINE AND FISHERIES.

The hon. gentleman will recollect that the matter was thoroughly discussed last year, the whole information was brought down, and there was a special vote brought into parliament for the purchase of this very steamer, and everything was discussed and settled. But I will give the hon. gentleman any information he requires now. There was a special vote brought down last year for the purchase of this steamer, and carried after full discussion, and after all the information asked for had been given. If the hon. gentleman desires,

I will go over it again.

Topic:   SUPPLY-THE BUDGET-INQUIRY.
Subtopic:   J. L. McDOUGALL, A.G.
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CON

William Humphrey Bennett

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BENNETT.

If the money was voted it must have been last summer ; then how was it that it was not until November that the money was paid over ? No doubt the vendor was anxious to secure his money.

I have no recollection personally whether there was a special grant or not.

Topic:   SUPPLY-THE BUDGET-INQUIRY.
Subtopic:   J. L. McDOUGALL, A.G.
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The MINISTER OF MARINE AND FISHERIES.

How does the hon. gentleman make out that it was paid in November, 1900 ? I think he is wrong in that.

Topic:   SUPPLY-THE BUDGET-INQUIRY.
Subtopic:   J. L. McDOUGALL, A.G.
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CON

William Humphrey Bennett

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BENNETT.

Because the letter of the Auditor General is dated on the 17th of November, and at that time he protested against the payment.

Topic:   SUPPLY-THE BUDGET-INQUIRY.
Subtopic:   J. L. McDOUGALL, A.G.
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The MINISTER OF MARINE AND FISHERIES.

But that refers to the deputy's letter of the 17th of February previous, nearly a year before.

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CON
CON

Frederick Debartzch Monk

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MONK.

I must say I do not find the explanation of the minister satisfactory. I think when we vote such a large amount as $160,000 we are entitled to know in a precise manner what is going for repairs and what for maintenance. When I asked the hon. gentleman that, he said : Oh, that is the usual annual vote. As a matter of fact the vote reached the figure of $160,000 in 1900 ; before that it was $145,000. Then the hon. gentleman says : I intend to ask for $20,000 for extraordinary repairs. Then he says further on : It

ought to be $180,000 anyway. For his own part he was of the opinion that it was better to make it $180,000 right away. And during all this time the hon. gentleman is not able to tell us, as surely he ought to know, what amount is going for maintenance and purely annual repairs, and what amount is destined for extraordinary repairs, and what amount is destined for the purchase of new ships. I think this is a most unsatisfactory manner of getting through an item of that magnitude. When we have an amount for maintenance and repairs, why have we not for the purchase and building of new ships? why have we not the amounts separated ? It would be much clearer, and we would lose much less time.

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Subtopic:   J. L. McDOUGALL, A.G.
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The MINISTER OF MARINE AND FISHERIES.

I am sorry my hon. friend does not think the explanation satisfactory, but I made it perfectly plain. The vote for $160,000 for maintenance and repairs refers chiefly to the maintenance of ships, but it also embraces some ordinary small repairs, if there are any. I told the hon. gentleman last year, when I asked for a large amount required for repairs in a special vote in the supplementaries. that 1 proposed to ask for it tin's year again. They are not hidden or covered up. This amount is not for the purchase of the ship.

Topic:   SUPPLY-THE BUDGET-INQUIRY.
Subtopic:   J. L. McDOUGALL, A.G.
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CON

Frederick Debartzch Monk

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MONK.

What is the amount of the extraordinary repairs ?

Topic:   SUPPLY-THE BUDGET-INQUIRY.
Subtopic:   J. L. McDOUGALL, A.G.
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The MINISTER OF MARINE AND FISHERIES.

I have not brought it down yet.

I told the hon. gentleman what it was last year-$12,869 for the Minto and $7,000 for the Aberdeen. I intend to bring down a supplementary estimate of repairs to the boilers of the Druid and the boilers of the Stanley, which were nearly worn out, and a deck was also put forward on the Aberdeen this year. This will be brought down with the supplementary estimates. This item of $160,000 is the ordinary item for the maintenance of the ships.

Topic:   SUPPLY-THE BUDGET-INQUIRY.
Subtopic:   J. L. McDOUGALL, A.G.
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CON

Frederick Debartzch Monk

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MONK.

If the hon. gentleman would allow me, why does he then contend that the vote should be $180,000 every year for just these ordinary expenses of maintenance and repairs, and why is it that the hon. gentleman cannot tell us what is the specific amount required ?

Topic:   SUPPLY-THE BUDGET-INQUIRY.
Subtopic:   J. L. McDOUGALL, A.G.
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The MINISTER OF MARINE AND FISHERIES.

The $160,000 I now ask for is practically and substantially for the maintenance of the ships. If there are any other sums required for repairs, I propose to bring them down as a supplementary estimate.

I have said that I would have to ask for $30,000 this year in addition to this $160,000 for repairs. This $160,000 is for maintenance. Last year the vote was taken in the same way, and I had to bring down an estimate for repairs, and I gave the hon. gentleman the items. It is proposed to do the same thing again this year, so that the House will know what the repairs will amount to besides.

Topic:   SUPPLY-THE BUDGET-INQUIRY.
Subtopic:   J. L. McDOUGALL, A.G.
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February 22, 1901