May 4, 1903

FIRST READING.


Bill (No. 143) respecting the Canadian North-west Irrigation Company.-Mr. Oliver -By Mr. McCreary.


BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE.

LIB

John Charlton

Liberal

Mr. JOHN CHARLTON (North Norfolk).

Mr. Speaker, before the Orders of the Day are called, I wish to call attention to the order of business of the House. For the last two or three years, when the government have taken all the days in the week

but one, if the day not taken was other than Wednesday, the order of business for Wednesday was adopted for the day so left free for business introduced by private members. I understand that we have but one day devoted to business introduced by private members under the resolution introduced by the right hon. leader of the government, and that day is Monday ; and I see by the Order paper that the regular Order for this day is retained-that is, we have first, questions to be put by members, next notices of motion, and next public Bills and Orders. Now, notices of motion may occupy the day and so public Bills and Orders be entirely excluded from consideration. Under the regular order of business we have Monday devoted, as under the Order now before us, to questions to be put by members, then notices of motion, then public Bills and Orders; Wednesday to notices of motion up to six o'clock and public Bills and Orders after half-past seven ; and Thursday to public Bills and Orders up to six o'clock, and notices of motion after half-past seven. This divided the time as equally and fairly as it is possible to do between these classes of business-notices of motions and public Bills and Orders. I presume that it is an oversight that the custom of the last two or three years has not been followed and the order of business for Wednesday fixed for Monday. Now, we have on the Order paper nineteen public Bills. If the Order is retained as it stands, we are in danger of not reaching any of these. Some of them are Bills of importance, among them the Bill with regard to the cigarette question.

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CON
LIB

John Charlton

Liberal

Mr. CHARLTON.

The government may. But then the government may not. This House has affirmed by an overwhelming majority that a certain line of action is desirable with regard to that matter and here is a Bill introduced by the gentleman who introduced that resolution-

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LIB

Lawrence Geoffrey Power (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER.

Do I understand that the hon. gentleman (Mr. Charlton) intends to conclude with a motion.

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LIB

John Charlton

Liberal

Mr. CHARLTON.

I will conclude with a motion, if necessary, Mr. Speaker, though I was merely calling attention to the Order of procedure. Here are nineteen public Bills which, under the Order laid down, if it is not amended, will not be reached or taken into consideration during this session. I was pointing out the importance of one of these Bills, that respecting the cigarette question. I think the country will be very much dissatisfied with the course of this House, if, through inadvertence, no action is taken upon that matter. For this reason, I suggest to the government the course that has been adopted for the last two years certainly, and, I think, for the last three years- that the order of business for Wednesday

shall be made the order of business for Monday, making the Order first, question put by members, then notices of motions up to six o'clock, and public Bills and Orders after half-past seven. I move that this House do now adjourn.

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The PRIME MINISTER (Rt. Hon. Sir Wilfrid Laurier).

I may explain to my hon. friend (Mr. Charlton) that there has been no oversight this year in the motions made to take Wednesday and Thursday for government business, for the reason that all the public Bills to which my hon. friend has referred have been called, not only once or twice, but three times. If they have not been disposed of, it is by no fault of the government.

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LIB
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The PRIME MINISTER.

No, because it is placed on the Order paper for the first time to-day, and it cannot be called to-day because it is not printed. I doubt very much if the notices of motion on the Order paper will not be exhausted before six o'clock. In all probability we shall get into public Bills and Orders before this evening's session.

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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. R. L. BORDEN (Halifax).

An understanding was reached under which two Wednesdays were to be reserved, this being done for the reason suggested by my hon. friend (Mr. Charlton) that there were a number of Bills on the Order paper. At the time, I drew the right hon. premier's (Rt. Hon. Sir Wilfrid Laurier's) attention to the fact of these Bills being on the paper, and so the two Wednesdays.were reserved. But these proved of no value for the purpose intended, because both were taken up by the budget debate. Perhaps the right hon. gentleman would consider that point and let us know at a future time-

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The PRIME MINISTER.

We will see what progress we make to-day.

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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BORDEN (Halifax).

After that time, the matter might be considered, and, if necessary, some opportunity for the consideration of these Bills be afforded.

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CORRESPONDENCE RE SOREL WHARF.

CON

Rufus Henry Pope

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. R. POPE (Compton).

Before the Orders of the Day are called, I beg to remind the Minister of Public Works (Hon. Mr. Sutherland) that on Friday last I asked for reports, correspondence and general information in connection with the wharf at Sorel.

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The MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS (Hon. James Sutherland).

I gave instructions to the officials of the department to have any information brought down. It will probably be here this afternoon. [DOT]

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STRIKE OF SECTION-MEN ON CANADA ATLANTIC RAILWAY.

LIB

Jacob Thomas Schell

Liberal

Mr. J. T. SCHELL (Glengarry).

Before the Orders of the Day are called, I desire to ask the government if they are aware that the section-men on the Canada Atlantic Railway are on strike. In fact, I believe there are no section-men at work upon that, railway at the present time. I think probably it would be in the interest of the public to have some inquiry made in reference to that matter.

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The POSTMASTER GENERAL (Hon. Sir William Mulock).

The government is aware that there is some misunderstanding, probably in the nature of a strike, perhaps an actual strike, on the part of the section-men of the Canada Atlantic Railway. On Friday, a committee asked the intervention of the Department of Labour, and the department) has offered its services. But no communication in respect thereof has been received from the Canada Atlantic.

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May 4, 1903