April 16, 1901

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The MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS.

I am very much surprised at the heat displayed by the hon. gentleman (Mr. Kaul-,bach). I think he should be a little cooler. He lias been long in parliament, and for many years his friends were in office. I do not like to use that language ; but the fact is, his friends were in office when the har-, hour of Lunenburg needed dredging, as it

does to-day. Why did he not induce his friends to do the work ? If I had the dredges at my disposal I would try to repair the neglect of his friends, and his lack of influence in the past. There was something wrong with him. If he had used the same warm language that he is using now, he would have succeeded, perhaps.

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CON

Charles Edwin Kaulbach

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. KAULBACH.

I am sorry that the hon. minister has not a better knowledge of the work of his department. If he will refer to the record of previous expenditures, he will find that the harbours of Lunenburg, LuHave and Malione had work done in them. But the banks of these harbours are alluvial, and the continual wash has caused the waters to become more shallow, and that is why this request is made of the minister. The hon. member for Yarmouth (Mr. Flint) is present, and he can verify my statement that Yarmouth harbour has had a dredge, with few exceptions, every year. Why should the county of Lunenburg be neglected as it has been when an appeal has been made to the minister so frequently, and reasons given why the work should be done. And especially when, three years ago the hon. minister in the presence of hundreds standing on the pier, at Lunenburg when taking his departure after I had appealed to him to say if the work was not essential, said, ' Yes, Kaulbacli, look out, you will have it soon.' I have not got it yet, and I suppose I may speak for some length of time this session before I get an answer satisfactorily, still I hope he will not delay beyond this session, but wall place an amount in the estimates that will enable the work to be done in a satisfactory manner.

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The MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS.

The hon. gentleman says he has not neglect-'ed his duty, but, at any rate, he did not succeed. If there was a dredge there for some time, it could not have been there long enough. We have only three dredges in Nova Scotia, the St. Lawrence, the Judge Mackenzie and the Canada. They cannot be everywhere at the same time. The port of Lunenburg is an important port and I am willing to dredge it. I would like to give him what his friends did not give him.

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CON

Charles Edwin Kaulbach

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. KAULBACH.

They did give it to me.

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The MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS.

If the hon. gentleman got from his friends everything he wanted, why is he speaking here now ? Either he did not get what he asked for or he did not ask enough. There is something wrong, as I said. What it was I do not know. He did not exert himself as he is doing now. But times have changed. The dredges in the province of Nova Scotia have not been idle. I shall be glad to dredge the port of Lunenburg as soon as circumstances will permit. I have under contract a new suction dredge, and when it is completed I shall be in a position to do a great deal more work than I have done 100

in the past. There is no reason why that port should be neglected in the future as it has been in the past by friends of the hon. gentleman. We do not mean to do anything of the kind, we mean to be fair to everybody.

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CON

Charles Edwin Kaulbach

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. KAULBACH.

The hon. minister is not improving his position at all by speaking of me in the manner he has done. He knows well that there is not a member of this House who has done more for his county than I have done in the interests of my county, and if he will refer to the records he will see the proof of it. I am indefatigable in my efforts in its behalf, day by day, and never neglect it. The hon. gentleman has made a reflection which I fling back to him. My record shows what I have done in the past. 1 care not what the Minister of Public Works or any one else says, I am here to defend my own rights. I can prove that my efforts have been commendable as a representative of the county of Lunenburg. I am here to tight for its interests, I care not which party is in power, and I shall continue to do so as long as I have the honour of a seat in this House.

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The MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS.

Would the hon. gentleman be good enough to tell me in what year the dredge last worked in the harbour of Lunenburg ?

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CON

Charles Edwin Kaulbach

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. KAULBACH.

I think it was about ten years ago, but I would not be certain. But at that time the work was not completed because the dredge broke down and the government promised that after her repairs were completed she would return to resume work. But there were so many other calls made upon the Public Works Department that the work was put off from time to time. But speaking with all due deference to the hon. minister, I must say to him that I will not be jumped upon in the manner he has done, when I am asking for a simple right for the county I represent. I feel that what I am asking for now is simple justice, it is something which the people demand, which the fishermen demand, and which the country demands. They contribute to the revenue indirectly more than any other county I know of, and why should they be refused this small work I am asking for ? If the hon. gentleman wishes to crush out the ship-building industry which has been a success in that county, the only county in which it has been a success for the last ten years or more, why, then I can understand his action and his language. That business is increasing, owing to the earnest efforts of a few parties who, under unfavourable circumstances, sought unselfishly and persistently to keep the business in existence and to bring it to a successful issue. It has become a success, and is affording employment or labour indirectly all over that part of the country, the county of Queen's included. I think the Minister of

Public Works should be the very tirst to come to my rescue and to say that be will do all be possibly can to further that industry. I feel satisfied that I have the support of my bou. friend tlie Minister of Finance who represents the adjoining county. He will endorse every word that I have said, that it is in the interests of the country as a whole, as well as of the county, that the appeal that 1 am now making to the government should be acceded to.

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The MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS.

The hon. gentleman says that a dredge worked in the harbour of Lunenburg ten years ago. Well, we have only been in office five years, therefore during, the preceding' five years under the Conservative regime when the hon. gentleman was a member of the House he did not get a dredge to go to the harbour of Lunenburg. Now, he blames me because I employ the dredges elsewhere. Why did he not impress his friends at that time with the importance of this work ? I do not mean to say that because the Conservative government neglected the harbour we are justified in doing so, but I say that the hon. gentleman has no right to blame me as he has done. I fully recognize the importance of the port of Lunenburg. When I was there I was favourably impressed by the port.

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CON

Charles Edwin Kaulbach

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. KAULBACH.

I believe you, but I want to see the proofs.

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The MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS.

You will see the proofs in due time. The fact is that at present the Department of Public Works have not at its disposal the implements that we should have to carry out all the works that are necessary. But we will have a full investigation of the port. The chief engineer has been instructed by me to take a note of it. I understand it will take two seasons more to carry out the work. I do not want to pledge myself to things that I cannot carry out, I never do that, but when I say I will do a thing, I do it. In this case I do not say that I will carry out the work in the port of Lunenburg, I only say that I have not got the implements to do it.

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CON

Charles Edwin Kaulbach

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. KAULBACH.

Will the hon. minister inform me if there is any work in the shape of dredging which is more important than that at Lunenburg ? Is it not more important than Porter's Lake ?

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The MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS.

I think there are works as important anyway.

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The MINISTER OF FINANCE.

I do not think dredges have been sent to Porter's Lake, as far as my recollection goes.

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CON

Charles Edwin Kaulbach

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. KAULBACH.

The minister has referred to my remark in regard to the harbour of Lunenburg being dredged ten years ago. He says that five years have elapsed

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Charles Edwin Kaulbach

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. KAULBACH.

during which I had the leading strings of the government in my hand, and that the work was not done. Well, now, the hon. gentleman must see that there are sis years during which he and his friends have been in power.

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The MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS.

Five years.

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The MINISTER OF FINANCE.

It seems very long, but it is not.

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Charles Edwin Kaulbach

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. KAULBACH.

Well, to please the hon. gentlemen, we will call it five years. During that time, in consequence of the nature of the adjacent banks, the alluvium which is being constantly washed down into the harbour has filled it up to an extent that it is almost impossible to keep vessels afloat. The inconvenience that is being caused to every vessel of heavy draught is such that I cannot properly describe it to you. There was a vessel the other day bound for Buenos Ayres which was loaded with deals at the railway wharf. We had to watch for the highest tide in order that we could get her away from the pier. She was a vessel of 500 tons only. The industry of fishing is carried on to a large extent there, and those engaged in it require salt. There is a ship loaded with salt that is now unable to get into the harbour jn consequence of the absence of a sufficient depth of water, and under these circumstances the hon. minister must see that he is crippling that industry, and thereby depriving the people of that port of having a harbour sufficient to enable a loaded ship of salt to get into it. This is only one of many reasons that I give to the hon. minister that he may be convinced that what I am saying is not that I may capture votes by it. That is not my object at all, hut I am claiming what I contend is the right of the fishermen and those who are engaged in trade and commerce there. I ask for the improvement in the way of dredging the LaHave River as well. Bridgewater requires a peculiar kind of dredge, a suction dredge such as will take sawdust in large quantities out in a partially liquid state, and convey it to the nearest point for deposit. The bottom of that harbour is composed of sawdust principally. This is a very important work, and one that should be attended to at an early day. I hope the bon. minister will see that a dredge is sent to Bridgewater, and that he will not forget Mahone at the same time. Mahone is increasing its number of vessels and tonnage from day to day, about twenty vessels are now being built there. I would ask the hon. Minister of Public Works to come to the rescue of these people at the earliest moment; let it be this summer.

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The MINISTER OF FINANCE.

The hon.

gentleman calls for the dredging of three harbours in bis county at the same time. These places, in the order of their import-

ance, in my judgment, are Bridgewater, Lunenburg and Mahone. Before any reference was made to this subject of the desire to have dredging done at Lunenburg, communications had passed between members and ministers with the view of having the harbour at Bridgewater dredged. I have asked the Minister of Public Works to give Bridgewater priority over the other works, and I think he will do so, and after he gets through with Bridgewater, if he can then attend to Lunenburg and Mahone, I would be pleased to have him do so. But. before the Lunenburg question was raised at all, I had urged upon the hon. Minister of Public Works to dredge the La Have river approaching Bridgewater harbour. The hon. Minister of Public Works has not made any difficulty in regard to money for Lunenburg. A vote was taken for the dredging at Lunenburg, and the hon. minister was willing to undertake that, but the difficulty was in obtaining dredges. We had hoped that we could, hire dredges to do the work, but the system which is available on the upper lakes of hiring dredges is not available in the lower provinces. We have been dependent on the small government dredges. The hon. Minister of Public Works proposes to build a large dredge which will be available for such work as this. I would merely remind the hon. gentleman (Mr. Kaulbach) that the hon. Minister of Public ' Works had two appropriations for dredging these harbours, and that the only difficulty has been in obtaining dredges.

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April 16, 1901