April 29, 1901

IND

William Findlay Maclean

Independent Conservative

Mr. MACLEAN.

There are two propositions before the House, and the Canadian Pacific Railway is father of them both. When the company comes with a new proposition, parliament is quite justified in saying, we proxiose to hold over this second prop'osition until you tell us what you have done with the first. It is well within the province of parliament to try to have this grievance of those North-west people removed, and to ask the Canadian Pacific Railway to give a reason for building a railway where it is not required, and refusing to build one to a part of the country where it is urgently required, and where, if it is mot built, the people threaten to leave Canada. We do not want that. There is only one way to air these grievances ; that is, to appeal to parliament, and use a club if necessary. But, every time an appeal is made to parliament to remedy a grievance from the North-west, it is sidetracked by one excuse or another. Parliament is the place to air and to rectify these grievances, and I am going to preach that doctrine as long as I am here. If you give the company everything they demand and ask for nothing in return, they will own the country, and do what they like. When parliament gives the company something, it should get something in return for the people. Here is an opportunity for making a strong representation, even to Mr. Drinkwater, who, I am glad to say, is now acting as president while the chief is away, to get two roads built this summer instead of one. It is to assist the people of the Northwest in getting their grievance righted that I am adding my word to-day, and I hope the right hon. premier will ask Mr. Drinkwater," before he leaves town, to agree that the company shall build twenty miles of this road during the present year.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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The MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS.

I beg to assure my hon. friends from the North-west that those of us who support the Bill as it is amended, are not acting for the Canadian Pacific Railway, but are quite as independent of the Canadian Pacific Railway as these hon. gentlemen themselves.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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LIB

Frank Oliver

Liberal

Mr. OLIVER.

I hope nothing personal was understood from my remarks, because I did not wish to convey any such meaning.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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The MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS.

I wish to emphasize that, because we have heard a good deal of it in former times. Our friends in the North-west, worthy of sympathy as they are, must not forget that their country is not the whole of Canada. They are sending us good men, and their com try is a very important part of Canada, we all recognize that; but, there are large

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sections in the eastern provinces which the Canadian Pacific Railway has not yet been able to serve. It would be a great pity if at any time this country were divided into sections, the east against the west, and I think that I am giving fair advice to my North-west friends in asking them not to create such an impression. The older provinces are ready to do anything they can ; hut, our friends must not forget that we have some little rights ourselves. 1 have endeavoured, with several other members of parliament, to use all the influence we could in order to induce the Canadian Pacific Railway Company to build branch railways in Ontario and Quebec, but we have not been able to do so. The Canadian Pacific Railway is a great corporation, but it has large interests to serve, and we cannot forget that it has to serve Canada as a whole. It is not to build branch lines altogether in the west, and at the same time neglect the east. I think, from the conversations I have had with the Canadian Pacific Railway people, that they are going to build that North-west Central line as soon as it is possible to do so.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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IND

William Findlay Maclean

Independent Conservative

Mr. MACLEAN.

Will the government not try to use its .good offices to get them to build it ?

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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The MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS.

My hon. friend knows that there are in the province of Ontario large sections of country which want to be served by the Grand Trunk and the Canadian Pacific Railways, and which these companies are not serving to-day. I am prepared, speaking for myself, to go far in assisting the people in the west. In fact, parliament has been asked this year to do a great many things for the west; but, speaking in the most friendly way, and with the best disposition towards my friends in the west, I say that they should not insist on what they ask now.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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LIB

Joseph Henri Napoléon Bourassa

Liberal

Mr. BOURASSA.

If the principle is to be adopted, that a private Bill relating to a certain branch of the Canadian Pacific Railway is to be used to compel the company to build another branch, then, I have an amendment ready to add to this Bill; because there is a branch of the Canadian Pacific Railway extending 100 miles north of Montreal, through the old county of Terrebonne, and touching the county of Labelle, which was chartered twenty-five years ago, and has been heavily subsidized both by the Dominion and the province, and is not yet built. The charter was handed over to the Canadian Pacific Railway, and subsidies were voted to that line by this parliament two years ago. If it were built, it would develop a new section of the province of Quebec, a section in which there have been settlers for twenty-five years. If the Canadian Pacific Railway could be forced to build that branch, I would be glad to see it done ; but, as the representative of the county of Labelle, I would be ashamed

to ask for it as a condition to giving authority to build another branch. Even if I lost votes, I would not do that, because we must have some respect for the procedure of parliament.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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LIB

Frank Oliver

Liberal

Mr. OLIVER.

I must say I think the hon. member for Labelle has made out a very good ease. It is quite a fair question for this parliament to consider how long we should allow railway companies to hold charters and subsidies without building the lines. Our contention is that the Canadian Pacific Railway or any other railway company shall not be allowed to hold a charter unless it builds under it.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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The MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS.

How long have they held this charter ?

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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LIB

Frank Oliver

Liberal

Mr. OLIVER.

About four years. I wish to point out that a railway company acquired the charter twenty years ago, and that subsequently the Canadian Pacific Railway acquired this charter from the other railway company, subject to all the latter's rights and privileges and liabilities, and it will not do for the Canadian Pacific Railway to say that they are only responsible for the time elapsed since they became the owners. When they acquired the charter, they became responsible for the time elapsed since the beginning.

This is one of the roads which are subsidized out of the lands of the North-west, and that subsidy has been paid by the North-west ever since it was first chartered. That is to say, the odd-numbered sections of land in the North-west have been held reserved from sale and settlement in order to meet the land grant to this and other similar roads. In all fairness, a road which was chartered twenty years ago, which was acquired four years ago by a company competent to build it, subject to the rights and liabilities which accrued during the preceding years-a road whose subsidy was practically paid twenty years ago by the North-west-is in a little different position from any other in the Dominion.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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IND

Robert Lorne Richardson

Independent

Mr. RICHARDSON (Lisgar).

With regard to the North-west Central. I understand that the company applied for an extension this session. What was the application ?

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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LIB

James Moffat Douglas

Liberal

Mr. DOUGLAS.

The Bill asked for an extension of five years in which to begin to build, and the company made no proposition to build at all. Their application was strongly opposed, and I spoke very strongly on the matter, and at length. Then the Railway Committee appointed a sub-committee, and that committee met a representative of the Canadian Pacific Railway, and we agreed unanimously that the Canadian Pacific Railway should build at least what their charter called for, namely, 25 miles each year. The Canadian Pacific Railway, in making this agreement, arranged that they might possibly build 40 miles this

coming summer, and build 00 miles within the three years.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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The MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS.

The survey is not yet completed.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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LIB

James Moffat Douglas

Liberal

Mr. DOUGLAS.

They are going on with the building of the Great North-west Central according to agreement with the subcommittee, which agreement was accepted unanimously by the Railway Committee. That is the reason why I could not urge strongly to-day the claim now made, though I am second to none in my desire to push the construction of this road at the earliest possible date.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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IND

Robert Lorne Richardson

Independent

Mr. RICHARDSON (Lisgar).

The explanation of the hou. member for East Assiniboia somewhat alters the case.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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LIB

Thomas Walter Scott

Liberal

Mr. SCOTT.

It seems to me that what the hon. gentleman from East Assiniboia has said simply strengthens the case. The Canadian Pacific Railway came down to parliament this session and asked for an extension for five years, and for what reason ? Because they were financially unable to go on and build ; but since this agreement was arrived at with the sub-committee, they come before us and ask power to spend money in building another section of road in another section of country which no one is asking for.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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IND

Robert Lorne Richardson

Independent

Mr. RICHARDSON (Lisgar).

The hon. member for East Assiniboia did not make that explanation. I understood that the Canadian Pacific Railway were carrying out in good faith the arrangement made with the sub-committee.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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The MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS.

So they are.

M. SCOTT : But they have given us new light on the subject. We have further information as to the financial ability of the company. Since this arrangement was arrived at with the sub-committee, the company appear able financially to construct 100 miles from Teulon to Lake Manitoba. The right hon. the First Minister made reference to the importance of this proposed Teulon branch, and I wish to say that I fully admit the force of the remarks made by him, but I would point out this-

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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IND

Robert Lorne Richardson

Independent

Mr. RICHARDSON (Lisgar).

Did the company say they were financially unable to build more than 25 miles of that road ? I wish the committee to distinctly understand that I am in no way receding from the position I took when I spoke first, and I desire, with all the strength at my disposal, to join the North-west members in having the extension of this railway built, more especially because of the point brought out by the hon. member for Alberta. This company has a most valuable line grant of 6,400 acres per mile, and has hail it for twenty years. There is no good land in the whole of the North-west Territories to-

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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LIB

James Moffat Douglas

Liberal

Mr. DOUGLAS.

day which is not worth at least $3 an acre, and the average price at which lands are sold by the railway company will be more than that. Three dollars an acre on 6,400 acres per mile will give from $19,000 to $20,000 per mile, representing the subsidy for the construction of that road. I do not think that

the road itself, constructed as railways are on the prairie at present, will cost equipped more than $10,000 per mile, and that being so, I would urge on the government the desirability of pressing on the Canadian Pacific Railway the necessity of extending that road.

Topic:   THE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY.
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April 29, 1901