March 18, 1903

CON
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The MINISTER OF INLAND REVENUE.

Would my hon. friend have a little patience ? I have said that gentlemen have approached me and asked if I would give them the contract provided that they would engage in that business. I said no, but they might go into the manufacture of that article and I would do* with them as I did with the distillers. I would give each manufacturer an order according to his production and buy from each at the current price.

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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CON

Edmund Boyd Osler

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. OSLER.

The objection raised is that this contract, which is about to expire in two months, is to be renewed with the same parties in order to prevent others from tendering.

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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The MINISTER OF INLAND REVENUE.

No.

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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CON

Edmund Boyd Osler

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. OSLER.

The only fair way would be to advertise now for tenders, so that others might have the right to compete. Let me tell the hon. minister what perhaps he does not know, and what may explain why the present contractors are so anxious to have their contract renewed. A very large German firm is now investigating with a view of manufacturing wood alcohol by a new process, which has been accepted by the leading chemtets in Germany and by which it could be manufactured at one-fifth its present cost. It is therefore only natural those people who have the contract to-day should be anxious to renew it for another five years. But it is not fair to the country that such a contract should be renewed. There is every reason why the government should advertise for tenders and let the public know two months in advance.

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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L-C

Samuel Hughes

Liberal-Conservative

Mr. HUGHES (Victoria).

1 would like to ask the Hon. Minister of Inland Revenue if he has any data to show the price of wood alcohol in other countries ?

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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The MINISTER OF INLAND REVENUE.

No, I could not say.

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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L-C

Samuel Hughes

Liberal-Conservative

Mr. HUGHES (Victoria).

Does the hon. minister not know that the price which the government is paying is abnormally large ?

The MINISTER OF INLAND REA'ENUE. It may be, but we have no choice.

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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L-C

Samuel Hughes

Liberal-Conservative

Mr. HUGHES (Victoria).

Did the Hon. Postmaster General (Sir William Mulock) make any pledge to the Standard Chemical Company that the contract would be renewed or did any other Minister of the Crown make any such pledge ?

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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The POSTMASTER GENERAL.

I suppose we shall all have to rise one after another and give an answer. I have offered no pledge.

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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CON

Richard Blain

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BLAIN.

Has there been any change in the duty since this government came into power and about the time the contract was entered into ?

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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The MINISTER OF INLAND REVENUE.

No.

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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CON

James Clancy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CLANCY.

The tariff of 1896 on wood alcohol was $2.25, but this free trade government made it $2.40. We have now the secret of Mr. Peuchen coming down and interviewing the government. The government did not turn a deaf ear to his request. He got a contract and he also got security that the Germans would not be allowed to send any alcohol in at the same price. I think that the Minister of Inland Revenue and the Minister of Finance might have taken the House into their confidence an hour ago and given us the inner history of this contract.

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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The POSTMASTER GENERAL.

The hon. gentleman's explanation is very ingenious, but there is a little bit of an anachronism about it. The' interview took place a few years ago and after the tariff of 1S9T. The tariff was revised in 1897, and I understand the Minister of Inland Revenue to say that that contract was for five years and has not yet expired. Therefore, it cannot date further back than 189S. Therefore, it cannot be earlier than 189S.

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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CON

James Clancy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CLANCY.

Quite so, but you are more generous than the hon. gentleman anticipated. First Mr. Peuchen got in advance of the tariff, and then he came a second time and got the sole contract.

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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CON

Adam Carr Bell

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BELL.

As I understood it, the sale of methylated alcohol is entirely in the hands of the government. Now7, what is the price at which the government sells ?

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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The MINISTER OF INLAND REVENUE.

A dollar ten.

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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CON

Adam Carr Bell

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BELL.

What is the proof strength ?

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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The MINISTER OF INLAND REVENUE.

Sixty-six or sixty-seven over proof.

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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CON

Adam Carr Bell

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BELL.

Is it the same now as in 1896 ?

Topic:   SUPPLY-GOVERNMENT BUSINESS.
Subtopic:   INQUIRY FOR RETURN.
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March 18, 1903