September 24, 1903

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The MINISTER OF CUSTOMS (Hon. William Paterson) :

1. The total amount of duty collected on tobacco during the fiscal year ending June 30th, 1903, was $582,089.30.

2. Assuming the quantity and value of tobacco entered for consumption to be the same, the additional duty collected in 1903 would amount to $128,862.08.

This, of course, does not take in the excise.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   TOBACCO DUTY.
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THE DREDGE ' INTERNATIONAL.'

CON

Mr. FOWLER asked :

Conservative (1867-1942)

1. Has the government bought or leased the dredge ' International ' from Michael Connolly? If so, what is the purchase price or rental, as the case may be ?

2. Is it intended that the above dredge shall be used this season, and if so, when ?

3. When and where was the said dredge built ?

4. If said dredge was purchased by the government, by whom was the appraisement of value made ; and at what sum was the valuation fixed ?

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   THE DREDGE ' INTERNATIONAL.'
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The MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS (Hon. James Sutherland).

Arrangement has been made to purchase the ' International ' dredge plant from the Conolleys. The dredge is now on its way to Quebec, and the chief engineer informs me that it is first intended to dredge in the deep water there for the new pier that is being built. I think that the dredge was built at Kingston, but am not, certain. Its valuation was made by three or four officers of the Department of Marine and Fisheries and the Department of Public Works by Mr. Stephens, of Halifax, N.S., who is looked upon by the Department of Public Works as having most expert knowledge of machinery of all kinds. Reports were made which can be brought down if necessary.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   THE DREDGE ' INTERNATIONAL.'
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THE ELECTION LAW.

CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. R. L. BORDEN (Halifax).

Before the Orders of the Day are called, I would like to ask whether or not it is the intention of the government to introduce any measure with regard to the Election Law ? I understand that a report of the committee has been ready for some weeks, and if it is proposed to pass legislation this session, it seems desirable that some progress should be made with regard to it.

Topic:   THE ELECTION LAW.
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The MINISTER OF FINANCE.

My hon. friend is mistaken. The Bill Is before the House and on the public Bills and Orders, an opportunity will be afforded before the close of the session to have the report brought forward.

Topic:   THE ELECTION LAW.
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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BORDEN (Halifax).

I did not know that the Bill had been introduced. No progress can be made unless it be adopted as a government measure, because public Bills and Orders will never be reached again this session.

Topic:   THE ELECTION LAW.
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CORRESPONDENCE WITH GERMAN CONSUL.

CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. R. L. BORDEN (Halifax).

I would like also to ask the right hon. gentleman

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*whether he has any information to com municate with respect to the recent correspondence which has taken place between a member of the British House of Commons and Mr. Chamberlain ? I observe in a press despatch to-day the following :

London, .September 23.-A. W. Black, Liberal member of parliament for Banffshire, wrote Hon. Jos. Chamberlain, seeking an explanation as to why the correspondence between Sir Wilfrid Laurier, Premier of Canada, and Herr Bopp, German consul at Montreal, was withheld from the British House of Commons upon the only occasion they were permitted to discuss Ithe Canadian-German policy. Chamberlain's reply, dated September 3, was as follows :-

'The Canadian government did not communicate the correspondence to me. I have caused a communication to be addressed to the Dominion government requesting ithem, in future, to keep me informed as to any unofficial negotiations into which they may enter.'

In a later letter to Mr. Black, Mr. Chamberlain said : ' I have not heard of any intention on the part of Canada to deal with the situation by direct tariff negotiations, nor have I any information whatever to confirm the unauthorized inference you draw from the correspondence referred to, that Canada would he willing under any circumstances to give Germany the same treatment as the -mother country.

There is also a telegram from another source to the following effect:

London, September 23-The Morning * Standard ' says: 'The Ignorance of the colonial office as to the relations between Sir Wilfrid Laurier and Herr Bopp are far from satisfactory?

(By Associated Press.)

London, September 23-A. W. Black, Liberal member of parliament -for Banffshire, makes public -to-night an interesting series of letters which passed between himself and Mr. Chamberlain on which Mr. Black maintains that the former colonial secretary launched hi-s fiscal scheme -while ignorant of Canada's attitude. In the first letter dated September 7, Mr. Black points out that Mr. Chamberlain, replying to a question from the writer -in the House of Commons, July 22, stated that the Canadian government had had no direct correspondence with Germany concerning the tariff arrangements and that the Canadian government could only communicate with Germany through His Majesty's government. The subsequent publication of the tariff correspondence showed that official correspondence had passed between the Canadian Premier -and Mr. Bopp, German consul at Montreal, in which the Canadian policy toward Germany was clearly defined. Mr. Black asked the Colonial Secretary to reconcile his reply with the facts shown in the correspondence. Replying, Mr. Chamberlain said he was unaware of the correspondence as the Canadian government had not kept him informed of any unofficial negotiations they might conduct. Mr. Black replying to this letter pointed out that Mr. Chamberlain makes the damaging admission that he announced ihis preferential tariff scheme without having knowledge of the correspondence which shows that Canada intended -to negotiate directly with Germany and was (prepared to give Germany the same preferential treatment as the mother country. Mr. Black -said that Mr. Chamberlain must see that the reciprocity part

Topic:   CORRESPONDENCE WITH GERMAN CONSUL.
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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BORDEN (Halifax).

of his fiscal scheme can not stand without the colonies surrendering their fiscal independence. Mr. Ch-amiberiain replied that the present correspondence was not relevant to the fiscal controversy. He had not heard of any intention on the part of Canada -to directly negotiate tariffs and he declined to argue the question in a private correspondence.

I am not concerned at present with the discussion regarding the fiscal policy, but I would like to know whether or not it is correct that the correspondence was had with Mr. Bopp, the German consul at Montreal, and the Dominion government, and that the colonial office was kept in ignorance of the negotiations. While we are anxious to have the power of this country to deal with those matters unrestricted as far as may be possible under present arrangements existing between this -and the mother country, still I suppose that negotiations of that kind would hardly -be conducted by this government without informing the imperial government of their progress.

Topic:   CORRESPONDENCE WITH GERMAN CONSUL.
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The PRIME MINISTER.

The only thing that I know of all this is that a despatch has been received from the colonial office about some informal negotiations with Mr. Bopp, which were placed before parliament some time ago. I have no objection to placing the correspondence before the House.

Topic:   CORRESPONDENCE WITH GERMAN CONSUL.
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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BORDEN (Halifax).

If my right lion, friend (Rt. Hon. Sir Wilfrid Laurier) would be good enough to do that, it would answer the present purpose very satisfactorily. If necessary, we can discuss the matter at a future time.

SUIT AGAINST Mr. W. T. R. PRESTON.

Topic:   CORRESPONDENCE WITH GERMAN CONSUL.
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CON
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The PRIME MINISTER.

So far as 1 know, the government has not been informed of any intention on the part of Mr. Preston to leave England and come to Canada. And, so far as I know we have no information as to the reasons which prevented him coming to Canada if such was his intention.

Topic:   CORRESPONDENCE WITH GERMAN CONSUL.
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An hon. MEMBER.

He did come to Canada.

Topic:   CORRESPONDENCE WITH GERMAN CONSUL.
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The PRIME MINISTER.

He came to Canada, but went back immediately. According to the despatch which has been read, he was to have returned to Canada. We have no information on the subject.

Topic:   CORRESPONDENCE WITH GERMAN CONSUL.
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CON
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The PRIME MINISTER.

I do not know. I would not take as a charge against Mr. Preston the fact that he had been sued. I would take a judgment as evidence. But a suit can very easily be entered, and I make no comment or charge upon the basis ef a suit having been entered.

Topic:   CORRESPONDENCE WITH GERMAN CONSUL.
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NATIONAL TRANSCONTINENTAL RAILWAY.

September 24, 1903