August 27, 1903

LIB

Fletcher Bath Wade

Liberal

Mr. WADE.

Most assuredly ; there could be no such reduction. How could you work it out 1 The commissioners are appointed and told that they must build the road, not build it themselves but build it by tender and contract. They ask for tenders for the construction of the whole or a part of that road and the contract calls for the construction of the road by the contractor whose tender is accepted.

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

Does the hon. gentleman say that in the construction of the Intercolonial Railway, where the same principle is involved, contractors who build the road are not allowed to bring in material free of duty ?

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LIB

Fletcher Bath Wade

Liberal

Sir. WADE.

I would answer the hon. gentleman in this way : With regard to the Intercolonial, the law permits the government to import materials from abroad without paying duty.

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CON
LIB

Fletcher Bath Wade

Liberal

Sir. WADE.

Certainly, but, if a man takes a contract to do a certain work on the Intercolonial, the government does not allow him any rebate for duties.

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CON
LIB

Fletcher Bath Wade

Liberal

Mr. WADE.

We should speak about these things with knowledge. It is all very well for a gentleman in Toronto to look over a contract, which has passed the legal ordeals that this contract has, and to give his statement that a certain section of it means a certain thing. If the hon. gentleman would be a little more careful before making a statement of that kind, he would not put himself in such a position as he has done.

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LIB

Charles Bernhard Heyd

Liberal

Sir. HEYD.

Did I understand the hon. gentleman to say that section 17 does not

apply until the railway has passed into the hands of the lessees ?

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LIB

Fletcher Bath Wade

Liberal

Mr. WADE.

That is exactly what I say. It does not apply until it has passed into the hands of the lessees, and until there has been a necessity for betterments which will be, I presume, a matter of at least fifteen years. And in this connection, be it remembered the government is not oblige ed to spend a dollar in betterments. And, under the terms of the contract the company has not only to maintain the road but to maintain it in accordance with the altered and advanced requirements of railway operation as time rolls on.

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

Will the hon. gentleman allow me to ask him a question ? I do not wish to interrupt him.

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LIB
CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

Would the hon. gentleman, as a lawyer say that, in his opinion the courts, if appealed to, would not hold that under a proper construction of the contract, the estimate of the cost of construction should be reduced by the amount of the duty ?

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LIB

Fletcher Bath Wade

Liberal

Sir. WADE.

As a lawyer-and I speak in the hearing of lawyers and my words will go on record to be read, if they desire, by the lawyers of the whole Dominion-I say that in arriving at the cost of construction of the eastern division under the provisions of this contract, the Grand Trunk Pacific will not be entitled to have any rebate given or deduction made on account of the articles which have been brought in and which have paid duty. I do not believe a lawyer can be found in the whole Dominion who would give an opinon to the contrary.

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

Suppose the articles do not pay duty ? Suppose the contractor takes the position that they are brought in for the government ?

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LIB

Fletcher Bath Wade

Liberal

Mr. WADE.

There is no authority under the Customs Act, under which that can be done. The only party that can import free of duty is the government itself. Every man who has a contract under the government takes that contract under the liability to pay duty on imported articles used in this contract. It would be just as reasonable to say that a man who has a contract to build a lighthouse on the shore and who has to import material, might say : I am building this for the government and need not pay duty. I wish to assure the hob. gentleman (Mr. Sproule) that I am in earnest in this matter.

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

The hon. gentleman (Mr. Wade) is on record, and the future will determine whether he is right or not.

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LIB

Fletcher Bath Wade

Liberal

Mr. WADE.

Yes, the future will show. Now, I want to refer for a moment to the matter of subsidies. The hon. member for Mr. HEYD.

West Toronto (Mr. Osier) said there should be no more subsidies granted to railways. I think that is a very unkind remark coming from him, with his province traversed in every way by railroads which have been subsidized and aided by the government and the road of which he was a director subsidized to a greater extent than any other road in Canada ever was or ever will be. Why, he comes away with his coat pockets stuffed full of subsidies, with his waist-coat pockets stuffed full of subsidies, with his trouser pockets stuffed full of subsidies, with his boot-legs stuffed full of subsidies, and when he has got all that he can carry away, he turns around and says : Stop it; it is time to bring this thing to an end ; no more subsidies must be granted and no more railroads built.' That is not a position that the people of the other provinces will stand. We want railroads constructed whatever they are necessary for the development of the country, and we are not going to allow him to prevent us from giving proper assistance to these roads. Why what was his own "project ? He is assisting in formulating a scheme by which the government would be compelled to pay over to his company $24,000,000 or $25,000,000. to take off their hands an unprofitable portion of his road and also to expend $3,000,000 in betterments of the line. This lion, gentleman (Mr. Osier) said that we had no security under the contract that the Grand Trunk Pacific Company would operate the eastern division. And he told us that he had consulted one of the best lawyers in the province of Ontario. With a good deal of reluctance he gave us that gentleman's name as Mr. .Tames K. Smith. I have looked up Mr. Smith. I must confess that I was so ignorant that I had never heard of him as a celebrated lawyer, or as a lawyer at all, until his name was brought up in this House. I find that he is a very estimable gentleman living in Toronto, wlio has considerable means and deals in real estate loans and so on. But I am told that he has never been in active practice and is not in active practice to-day, except in foreclosing mortgages and other things of that kind pertaining to his personal business.

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CON

Edward Arthur Lancaster

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LANCASTER.

Would the hpn. gentleman (Mr. Wade) permit me to tell him that Mr. Smith is the editor of the Ontario Law Reports.

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LIB

Fletcher Bath Wade

Liberal

Mr. AVADE.

I would like to know how far that goes towards proving that he is an eminent lawyer.

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LIB

August 27, 1903