June 29, 1903

CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BORDEN (Halifax).

That is clause ten ?

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The MINISTER OF RAILWAYS AND CANALS.

Yes.

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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BORDEN (Halifax).

And of course the schedule. I would have thought that perhaps it would have been better to have been a little more definite in the schedule which does not mention the length of line in each case, although that has been given by the hon. minister. Perhaps when we come to consider it we can make it a little more definite in that regard.

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The MINISTER OF RAILWAYS AND CANALS.

We might put the mileage opposite each line.

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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BORDEN (Halifax).

I would think it would be a very proper time for the hon. minister to give us some statement of the general policy of the government in regard to transportation west of Lake Superior and indeed from that to the Atlantic coast. We have asked that information in this House from time to time, but I do not think we have gathered very much thus far, except possibly the individual views of the hon. Minister of Railways and Canals expressed outside of the House. We have not only this measure but another very important measure before the House at this time a measure which, as we supposed, was coming up for consideration this afternoon-I refer to the Bill to incorporate the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway Company-and in the meantime, from influential organs of public opinion which are supposed to be largely in the confidence of the government, we are receiving intimations that the government is likely to propose a policy in regard to the extension of the Intercolonial Railway to some point farther west. It seems to me that in considering the aid which we shall grant to so important a part of the transportation system of Canada as this road will undoubtedly be, it would be

useful to the House-indeed it is due to the House-to have some statement from the government, or from the hon. Minister of Railways and Canals, as to what the policy of the government is in regard to the whole scheme of transportation and particularly in regard to transcontinental railways. It is asking the House to take something of a leap in the dark when we are desired to deal with this Bill without any information such as that which I have suggested. My hon. friend the Minister of Railways and Canals said, when the resolutions were being discussed in committee, that this line of some 720 miles in length which we are now being asked to assist would stand by itself separate and apart from any general scheme of transportation. I am inclined to take issue very strongly with the hon. minister in regard to that. I do not think this line should stand by itself. This is a very important line indeed; We have a system shown on the plan or on the map which the hon. Minister of Railways and Canals has laid on the Table to-day, and we see that this proposed system will extend very far indeed towards the Pacific coast. We know that, if not the same company, at all events the same gentlemen have obtained a charter to the Pacific coast, and it has been publicly announced on their behalf that their intention is eventually to extend their line to the Pacific coast and to own and control a transcontinental line. Well, it becomes very important indeed that the government should, at this stage, give the House its policy in regard to the whole system of transportation. Has the government made up its mind, or if not, when does it expect to make up its mind, as to whether or not it will leave this question of transcontinental railways entirely in the hands of private individuals or companies granting them for that purpose such assistance as may be thought reasonable ? Has the government under consideration the question of extending the Intercolonial Railway to any point farther west ? I do not think that I am asking too much of my hon. friend the Minister of Railways and Canals when I ask him to give the views of the government to the House in regard to that very important question at this stage. As I said before I do not think there is any more proper time for doing so than on this occasion when we are asked to deal by way of very substantial assistance with a line which must become part of a transcontinental system sooner or later.

_ The MINISTER OP RAILWAYS AND CANALS. Mr. Chairman, I do not blame my hon. friend (Mr. Borden, Halifax) for making the request for information which he has made to the government in respect of the general question of transportation, but in doing so I do not admit that he would have been perfectly entitled to make Mr. BORDEN (Halifax).

such a request though this proposition were not under the consideration of the committee. I cannot help regarding the question of aid to the Canadian Northern as a question which is not at all necessarily or otherwise connected with the matter with respect to which the hon. gentleman desires us to give him further knowledge. The hon. member of course is aware that proposals have been made to the government respecting the construction of another transcontinental line. If we cannot so describe the line of the Canadian Northern, at all events, there is one transcontinental line which will justify me in speaking of the proposals which are before the government as proposals respecting another transcontinental line. The present line of the Canadian Northern is one which was not projected, and which has not been aided from the standpoint of a line from the Pacific to the Atlantic. We have never had from the gentlemen who are interested in the Canadian Northern any request that they should be regarded as having in contemplating a line reaching from the Atlantic ocean at an early date, or as part of any scheme or plan which they say are to carx-y out in the immediate future. They came before the government a year ago and my hon. friend knows what transpired just before the session came to a close, when the right hon. Premier (Sir Wilfrid Laurier) stated that the government had a very important proposal before them. I do not know whether he referred to the Canadian Northern by name, but it was in reference to the Canadian Northern that he spoke. They were very anxious to get into the country which their charter authorized them to traverse, and the government were very anxious that they should do so, for the reasons that that country was beginning to fill up and is being looked to by new settlers as a very desirable country in which to settle and we felt that for the encouragement of settlement by people who had not gone through, and for the further encouragement of people who had gone through, it was essential that the line of the Canadian Northern by the route, plans of which had been submitted to the government and subsequently approved, should be constructed and that these gentlemen should at the earliest possible day enter upon the prosecution of their work.

We are urging the matter now because we feel that it is only fair to that company and it is only fair to the enterprise itself that it should be known parliament had given its sanction, so that they would be in a position to finance the project without any further delay. We regard it as vitally important that this road should be built with all possible speed, and to that end it is our purpose and intention to facilitate it, in every way in our power, of course, with the sanction and approval of parlia-

ment. That proposition therefore was one with which the government practically dealt with so far as the government could deal with it until parliament had passed its approval upon their proposals; and the government dealt with it before any question had come before us or had been submitted to us from any quarter by any other organization looking to the construction of a line from the Atlantic to the Pacific. Therefore this proposition which is before us to-day is in fact a separate and distinct proposition from the other. No one imagines for a moment that the building of this Canadian Northern line will exhaust the territory which we have available for settlement in our prairie region; no one will imagine for a moment that another line-if it shall be incorporated by parliament, and built, pursuing a more northerly route some miles distant from the most northerly line now located-no one will imagine for a moment that it will not go through a country which will be productive from every point of view. And as that line will likely, when it is taken up by the government, reach the Pacific and reach it as speedily ns possible, and will be an all Canadian route when it is constructed ; it is a separate and totally distinct proposition from that with which we have now to deal, and it is a proposition that is not in the slightest degree affected, as it appears to me, by the proposals which are now under the consideration of the committee.

I would be very glad indeed to inform my hon. friend (Mr. Borden) what decision the government had arrived at in respect to another transcontinental line, but when the submission is made to parliament by the government that submission must be a precise one; it must be a definite one; it must be one made with some detail; it must be one which has been well considered, and it would be premature, entirely premature, until all these various considerations have been passed on by the government and have been decided upon, that any statement should be made to parliament. I can say to my hon. friend (Mr. Borden) that we are as anxious as he is to be in a jiosition to announce to parliament whether we are going to ask parliament to take up the question of another transcontinental line at this session, or are going to defer it to a later period. Any member of the government would be as glad as my hon. friend, when a decision is reached, to present all the details which may bear upon so large a problem as that. We are just as keen as he is to reach a decision upon these matters. But that decision has not yet been reached and it would be impossible to make any announcement to parliament upon the subject now. I do not think that very many days will elapse before we will be able to take parliament fully into our confidence upon the subject, but in the meantime my hon. friend will have to rest content with the assurance, that the reason why the government is not giving him any more information to-day is not because we have information which we could give him and which we are withholding, but because we have not reached that point which we think it necessary to reach in order that we may put before the House and before the country, propositions which are well considered, which are practical, which are precise, which are definite, and which are such as we feel we can defend.

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CON

John Graham Haggart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. Mr. HAGGART.

The Minister of Railways has told us explicitly that the government has not yet come to a decision in reference to the Grand Trunk transcontinental railway. As my hon. friend (Mr. Borden) has pointed out, the Canadian Northern Railway people have announced that they intend not only to build to Edmonton but to reach the Pacific coast. In fact they shortened their route in order to make it available as the shortest possible transcontinental line. They also abandoned that portion of the I-Iudson Bay Railway and their western extension for the purpose of starting afresh at a point which would give them the shortest connection between Winnipeg and Edmonton. It is a well known fact that it is their intention to go to the coast. The government have these facts before them, and we have had the statement of the Prime Minister that he does not intend to subsidize a second transcontinental road across the continent. All this being so, the government must have considered how far they intend to go with the Grand Trunk Railway Pacific in their proposal to build a road across the continent. The hon. minister says that it may be the intention of the government to assist a road north of the proposed Canadian Northern Railway road which runs to Edmonton and thence to the coast. He says there is plenty of room in that country for another railway. Of course there is. But what the leader of the oj>po-sition wants to know is : did not the government consider all these things when they came to a decision to assist the Canadian Northern Railway 1 The government must have considered that. What would be the use of the Grand Trunk Railway or any other railway built by a private company from Quebec, to end in Winnipeg. It would not be worth anything to any company unless it had a western connection and a connection with the great lakes also. When they get to Winnipeg they must have connection with the fertile plains west and also with Lake Superior, and also, as I believe, in the near future, with the Hudson Bay, whence the wheat of that section of the country will be shipped to the markets of the world. All that must have been considered by the government when they came to a decision to assist the Canadian Northern Railway to Edmonton. Is this to be a road merely for the purpose of carrying immigrants and for taking out the grain

from that section of the country. Not at all. The assistance that is given to the Canadian Northern Railway must be in the light of its being a transcontinental road and before the government assisted it they must have come to a conclusion as to whether they were going to assist two roads to the Pacific coast or not. I should judge, from the statement of the hon. Minister of Railways, that the government have not come to a conclusion upon the subject-that they have not been able to make an arrangement between the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway and the Canadian Northern. After the statement of the premier, they would not come to the House and ask for a subsidy for another transcontinental railway ; because it is well known that the Canadian Northern Railway intend building to the Pacific coast. That company is being assisted by this government to the extent of ,$13,000 per mile, not for the purpose merely of reaching Edmonton. Their ulterior object, as every man in this country knows, is to construct a transcontinental road. Therefore, I argue that the whole subject must have been well considered by the government, they must have come to some conclusion in reference to it, find they ought to be prepared to take the House into their confidence and state whether, in the event of the Canadian Northern Railway Company projecting their line to the Pacific coast, it is their intention to assist the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway from Quebec to Winnipeg. As I have said before, unless the Grand Trunk Railway Company have the right to build to the Pacific coast, and to extend colonization lines into different parts of the country, a line from Quebec to Winnipeg would be an entirely useless one. In view of the statement of the premier, the application of the Grand Trunk Railway Company, and the intention of the Canadian Northern Railway Company to build to the Pacific coast, surely the House and the country are entitled to more information than has been given by the Minister of Railways on this important subject.

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CON

Albert Edward Kemp

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. KEMP.

I think the House is entitled to more information on this subject than has been given on many occasions. The hon. Minister of Railways says that the reason this Canadian Northern Railway system has never been treated as a transcontinental system is that its promoters have never informed the government that they had the ambition to build a transcontinental railway. It has been rumoured for more than a year past, to my knowledge, that they were ambitious to build through to the Pacific coast. When the lines which are now under construction are completed, for which the government are prepared to guarantee the interest, the Canadian Northern Railway Company will have an independent system by which they will be able to reach Hon. Mr. HAGGART.

the head waters of the lakes, and ship the products of the country to the markets of the world. In a sense, when they reach the head of the lakes, they reach tlie seaboard almost as much as would a railroad built from Winnipeg to Quebec, the only difference being that they reach fresh water instead of salt water; for the ports at the head of tlie lakes are open almost as many months of the year as the port of Quebec. To my mind it is ridiculous to say that the Canadian Northern Railway has not been considered in the light of a transcontinental railway. Can the government justify, before this House and the country, the bonus-ing of another railway paralleling the Canadian Northern Railway beyond Winnipeg V Are they of opinion that, with the Canadian Pacific Railway and its branches, and with the Canadian Northern Railway and its branches, there will be sufficient railway facilities in the north-west for some time to come 1 Then, what will be the object of building a line from Quebec to Winnipeg ? These are subjects which the government must have considered, and on which they ought to be able to give us some preliminary facts and figures. For my part, I feel that the time has arrived when the government should be in a position to say more to the House than they have said on the transportation question.

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

I want to refer to one statement the Minister of Railways made. He said it is premature to give the statement to the House. Well, this House has been sitting for over three months and a half, and we must be drawing within measurable distance of the end of the session ; surely the House ought to be in possession of the information soon, or otherwise not be expected to consider the subject during the present session. If the government cannot give the information now and yet purpose maturing their plans before this House is prorogued, then they must come down in the dying hours of the session with their decision, just as we have had resolutions regarding railways many times in the past. I think that is hardly fair to the House. In this instance the information is doubly important, because it has reference to a great through railway that ought to be considered as a whole, and not in piecemeal, as it is by these resolutions. We have had various rumours in the press of late, one being that the government have decided to build a line from Quebec to Winnipeg as a government line. If that be the case, I respectfully submit that the House and the country ought to know it. It has also been rumoured that the government have reached no conclusion, but that there is a diversity of opinion amongst the members of the cabinet on the subject. If that be so, let them state that they cannot reach a conclusion this session, and will not be prepared to submit any proposition to

the House during the present session ; and then they can go on and mature their plans. But it is due to the House and the country that we should have some information on the subject one way or the other at this stage of this session, so that we may know what is before us for the balance of the session.

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CON

Edward Frederick Clarke

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CLARKE.

I rise, Mr. Chairman, to emphasize the position taken by lion, gentlemen on this side of the House. It seems to me that it is the most reasonable proposition that could emanate from the opposition, to ask the hon. gentleman and his colleagues wliat they propose to do with regard to providing additional facilities for the solution of the transportation problem by giving aid for the construction of additional lines. The hon. Minister of Railways has said that the Mackenzie & Mann outfit was never looked upon as a transcontinental line.

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The MINISTER OF RAILWAYS AND CANALS.

I did not say that. What I said was that they had never approached the government from that point of view at all.

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CON

Edward Frederick Clarke

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CLARKE.

Of course, it would be an insult to the intelligence of the hon. minister to think, for one moment, that he was not fully aware of the efforts this company has been making during the past few years to improve its position, and the ultimate object which it has in view and which it hopes to attain by the legislation it has secured in this House for the promotion of the different sections of its line. He must be aware that when the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway scheme was first mooted, when notice was first given of the intention of its promoters to apply for incorporation, its eastern terminus was at Gravenhurst. Since then the Mackenzie & Mann Company have practically gained control of the Great Northern Railway, which gives them a line from Quebec to Montreal, and eventually to Ottawa ; and he also knows that they have charters which will extend their system from their present terminus to the Pacific coast. He must also be aware of the fact that in Ontario, they are making connection between their present terminus at Port Arthur with Sudbury, and finally Toronto. If such a scheme cannot be considered transcontinental, I would like to ask how the hon. minister can look upon the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway as a transcontinental scheme ? That scheme had first its eastern terminus at Gravenhurst, but by degrees it has extended it east to Montreal and then to Quebec and now down to Moncton. What claim has this new proposition to be considered transcontinental that is not possessed by that of Messrs. Mackenzie & Mann ? In my humble judgment these gentlemen have proved themselves practical railway builders, and their enterprise is certainly entitled to be considered as transcontinental

in its character. If that be the case, we should have a fuller explanation of the policy of the government than has been vouchsafed by the hon. Minister of Railways and Canals. Does the hon. minister seriously think that the construction of a line from Quebec to Winnipeg will aid very materially in the solution of the transportation problem ? Would it not be wise for the government to make up their minds and put the opposition in possession of the conclusions they come to with regard to the solution of this problem before asking us to consent to a government guarantee or bonus, amounting to millions of dollars, in order to aid tlie construction of the Mackenzie & Mann lines ? The policy that ought to be adopted is the one that will at the earliest moment open up the prairie lands of the North-west; and as a complement of that policy are the additional facilities that should be provided at Port Arthur and Fort William and the harbours on tlie eastern side of Georgian bay. It is absurd to say that we are going to solve the problem of furnishing sufficient transportation facilities, if we content ourselves with guaranteeing the bonds or bonusing a road whose eastern terminus will be at Quebec and its western at Winnipeg. The construction of such a line is not necessary. We have the Intercolonial Railway running from Quebec to Montreal, which can be extended as far west as the government choose to take it. We have also the transcontinental line of the Canadian Pacific Railway, and we have tlie Grand Trunk Railway running from Quebec westward to North Bay. Why should not the government devise some plan for making use of tlie road already constructed north of Lake Superior, where the traffic is now very light ? Why not make an agreement with the Canadian Pacific Railway which would secure running rights over that section for the Grand Trunk Railway, the Canada Atlantic Railway, and if necessary, the Intercolonial Railway, so that these roads might get up to tlie North-west, while the Canadian Northern Railway system could at tlie same time come from Port Arthur eastward ? A proposition of that kind would meet the approval of the House, and the opposition have a right to complain of the meagreness of the information supplied by the government as to what the intention of the government really is.

I have noticed in the Toronto papers that an attempt is being made to promote tlie construction and operation by the government of a road between Quebec and Winnipeg. Will the hon. gentleman vouchsafe any information on that subject ? Is it tlie intention of the government to shelve the Grand Trunk Pacific scheme for this session, so far as giving any aid to it is concerned, or to construct a national road from Quebec to Winnipeg and operate it ?

We have had the most meagre information on these points, and it is only right that we should be furnished with such information as I have suggested before we proceed further with the consideration of this Bill.

Another point I would lay before the hon. minister is this : Provision is made further on in this Bill that the Mackenzie & Mann enterprise shall not be consolidated witli the Canadian Pacific Railway, that its proprietors shall not sell it out to the Canadian Pacific Railway, or pass it under the control of that company. Why is there a provision made to prevent the absorption of the Mackenzie & Mann system by the Canadian Pacific Railway ? Why is not a similar provision inserted respecting its absorption by the Grand Trunk Pacific or any other transcontinental line that may be constructed ? It certainly seems to me that we have not the information we have a right to expect, and I strongly support the position taken by my hon. leader, namely, that tlie government should give us more information than they have yet vouchsafed before asking us to proceed further with so important a measure. We ought certainly to have a more definite declaration from the government as to what their transportation schemes really are and how they hope to give the country a satisfactory solution of that most pressing problem now waiting to be solved. The way these schemes are presented to us is not at all satisfactory, and we have the right to expect better things of a government which claims to be before everything else a business administration. I hope that the government will give us additional information or tell us that they have no policy to lay before the House, and that the best thing they can give us is this proposition to aid the Mackenzie & Mann project in the Northwest.

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The MINISTER OF RAILWAYS AND CANALS.

I have nothing to add to the statement I have already made to the committee. I stated in effect that the government had not matured its plans sufficiently to lay them before parliament. In that respect we lay ourselves open to any reflection which the hon. gentleman may choose to cast upon us, but not having matured our plans, it is a physical and moral impossibility for me to present them to the House. I hope my hon. friend now understands why I do not give him information tie asks.

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CON

Edward Frederick Clarke

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CLARKE.

I thank the hon. gentleman for this information. He is perfectly candid and frank, and I would ask him, in view of the statement he has just made, whether it would not be more reasonable to postpone further consideration of the Bill before us until the government have made up their minds and laid before parliament a completed scheme ?

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CON

Edward Frederick Clarke

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CLARKE.

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The MINISTER OF RAILWAYS AND CANALS.

I think not, and I will -tell the hon. gentleman (Mr. Clarke) why. It is for the very reason that he himself stated to this committee-the absolute necessity of providing railway facilities for the people who are already living in the district to be traversed by the road and who are now going there. We want to afford these facilities at the earliest possible moment; we are under engagement to do it, and we are carrying out that engagement, so far as lies in our power, by asking parliament for the authority provided in this Bill. Whether there is any transcontinental railway determined upon so far as government action is concerned, or whether it is not, is not material, so far as the present proposal is concerned, in my opinion. I think this road should go forward with all possible despatch. I think that every day of delay counts, because I am sure the gentlemen who are concerned in this undertaking will require to finance it, and should have an opportunity to do so at a season when financial arrangements can be made. We should not be justified in delaying to ask parliament to take action until we had matured our plans with regard to other matters that may be before us.

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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BORDEN (Halifax).

We all remember very well that this project was before the House, or at least before the government, last session; and, if it is to be regarded in the light in which the hon. gentleman (Hon. Mr. Blair) presents it to the House to-day, I should think the government should not care about mentioning the word ' delay ' in connection with it. I understood, certainly, from what took place at the end of last session, and from the comments which were made by the government press at the close of the session, that the government delayed doing last session what they are doing now for the very reason that this was a transcontinental scheme, and they proposed to have a policy with regard to it. If it is not to be regarded in .the light in which it is presented on this side of the House, why has there been delay for more than, a year in giving these railway facilities to the North-west Territories ? Why did not the government bring down .the proposition more than a year ago ? Why is it that now they present it to the House and still have no policy, though the question of policy must have been under consideration for a year at least ? Now, the government is face to face with one of two positions with regard to this matter. Either they did regard this line, a year ago, ns of so much importance in connection with the question of transcontinental transportation that they deemed it wise to do nothing until they could have a definite and specific policy with regard to that great question-they apparently did take that view of it a year ago, and therefore held their hands-or, on the other

hand, if they did not take that view a year ago, as I have said, there seemed to have been no good reason why there was a waste of at least a year in providing any facilities for this very important section of the Northwest Territories at a time, when, as the government knew, immigration was pouring in at a rapid rate, and was likely to increase in proportion during the present year. It seems to me that the delay that has taken place during the past year can only be because the government regarded it in the light in which we, on this side regard it now. What justification then, have the government to come down, three and a half months after the beginning of the present session, still telling parliament they have not matured a policy with regard to this great question ? I, for one, shall object strenuously to having a great question like this dealt with by parliament during the last ten days or fortnight of the session. As this is a matter which, in some shape or other, has been under consideration for at least a year, it would be treating, not only parliament but the country, unfairly, to ask that the people's representatives should consider it hurriedly, as such matters have to be considered in the closing days of a session. And I say that if the government are not prepared to deal with this question from the standpoint of a definite and specific policy of transcontinental railway connection, they ought to be so prepared, having had the question under consideration for at least a year. And, when the hon. gentleman speaks, as he does, of this line, comprising about seven hundred and thirty miles of railway, as! standing alone, standing by itself, something to be dealt with apart from the great general question, I do not agree with him. I believe that the people of the North-west now look, or at least they will in the future look, to the question of communication with the Pacific coast as of very great importance to them- perhaps as of as great importance to them as the question of transportation to the Atlantic coast. If our opportunities with regard to trade on the Pacific ocean and with the countries beyond the Pacific ocean are to any extent realized, it will be just as important to the constituents of my hon. friend from Alberta (Mr. Oliver) that there should be means of communication, and good means of communication, from that portion of the country to the Pacific, as that there should be means of transportation to the Atlantic. I do not say it is of such importance now, but I say it is very likely to be of as much importance in the future. And, even at the present, it is of importance that that portion of the country should have the means of communication with the great province of British Columbia. For these reasons, I must dissent, notwithstanding the arguments of the Minister of Railways (Hon. Mr. Blair), from the position which he has taken in saying that this 600 miles of rail-176

way from Gilbert Plains to Edmonton can be regarded as standing by itself and not necessarily connected with a great scheme of transcontinental transportation.

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LIB

Joseph Israël Tarte

Liberal

Hon. Mr. TARTE.

The Minister of Railways and Canals provides in this Bill, section S, th#t it shall be unlawful for the Canadian Northern Railway to lease or sell any of its lines or any portion thereof to the Canadian Pacific Railway. Now, as we are aware, the Canadian Northern goes through the State of Minnesota, having a length in that state of about one hundred miles. If it is to be unlawful for the Canadian Northern Railway Company to amalgamate with the Canadian Pacific Railway Company, a Canadian corporation, would it not be wise to make it unlawful also for them to amalgamate with an American corporation ? There have been efforts in the past, and there are efforts to-day, to divert our trade to American channels. It seems to me that it would be the part of wisdom for the government to say that the Canadian Northern shall not amalgamate with any American corporation that would divert our trade to American ports. That would be the easiest thing in the world. Any one who knows that part of the country will see, I hope, thei strength of the position I take. I fully recognize, with the hon. minister, that it is important to give additional means of transportation to our North-west friends. But, at the same time, it seems to me that we should never lose sight of the national fact, that we must not spare any efforts, we must not spare any means, to secure for ourselves the trade that we are building up in the west. So I would be very thankful indeed if the hon. Minister of Railways and Canals were in a position to offer us some information as to the point I am now raising.

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?

The MINISTER OF RAILWAYS AND CANALS.

I think it must be plain that from the first moment the Canadian Northern acquired a charter from parliament authorizing it to build into the Northwestern country, the condition was annexed that they should not be allowed to amalgamate with the Canadian Pacific Railway. That was the feeling and temper of parliament at that time, and that feeling and temper were shown in the agreement that was entered into by the Canadian Northern with the Manitoba government. That stipulation is one of the clauses of that contract. It was thought well, seeing that had been the expressed desire of parliament, that it should be continued in the existing arrangement. I do not know that a clause of this sort is of much value, because it will always be open to parliament to allow the Canadian Northern to amalgamate with the Canadian Pacific Railway, and it could not make any agreement, that is to say, the company could not be amalgamated unless parliament did give them power. Whether or not

you have a clause of this kind in the present legislation or any other charter, they could not do it without. There is, however, something beyond that in the clause which says that they may not make pooling arrangements nor enter into an agreement whereby rates upon freights or passengers shall be pooled. That is in addition, and that has been thought a wise and prudent provision, and is contained I think in all other contracts and agreements that have been made by the Canadian Northern, as well with the provincial government of Manitoba as with ourselves. My hon. friend has stated that this road runs a hundred miles in the state of Minnesota. The fact is it is only about fifty miles. But why was that ? It was because it would have been necessary, when the road was being constructed, in order that it should continue through Canadian territory, to incur a very large expense to cross the lake within Canadian territory ; and it was one of the understandings at that time with the Canadian Northern when we gave them assistance to construct the Rainy river branch, that if, at any future time, it was considered desir-abie that the road should take a short cut and should be built across the Lake of the Woods, the company would, upon receiving assistance, make that change in the route. I presume they will be prepared to carry it out at any time with reasonable assistance.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY GUARANTEE OF SECURITIES.
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CON

John Graham Haggart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. Mr. HAGGART.

Is there an understanding of that kind with the company ?

The MINISTER Ui' RAILWAYS AND CANALS. There was an understanding of that kind. I was asked by the hon. member for West Toronto (Mr. Clarke) why the same restriction should not apply to other companies. There are no other companies existing in that country at present, and if parliament chooses at any time to impose that restriction upon any company that is incorporated, it is quite free to do so. Whatever we might put in here, it would be necessary that legislation should be had by any other company chartered for the purpose of building through that country if it desired to make connection with the Canadian Northern.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY GUARANTEE OF SECURITIES.
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LIB

Joseph Israël Tarte

Liberal

Hon. Mr. TARTE.

I do not object to the clause stating that the Canadian Northern may not amalgamate with the Canadian Pacific Railway. I see the reason of that. The people of the west want competition, and they believe, rightly or wrongly, that there will be no arrangement with the Canadian Pacific Railway and the Canadian Northern, because there is such a clause in the Bill. I hope they are right. But the point to which I wish again to call the attention of the Minister, is that if it is made unlawful for the Canadian Northern in the present Bill to amalgamate with the Canadian

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY GUARANTEE OF SECURITIES.
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June 29, 1903