May 11, 1904

PRIVATE BILLS-EXTENSION OF TIME.

LIB

Robert Franklin Sutherland

Liberal

Mr. R. F. SUTHERLAND (North Essex) moved :

That that portion of the 49th rule -which limits the time for receiving petitions for private Bills, be, in accordance with the recommendation of the tenth report of the Select Standing Committee on Standing Orders, suspended in reference to the petition of J. T. Schell and others on behalf of the Lake Erie and Detroit River Railway Company, praying for an Act to construct a branch line of railway, and that it be read and received forthwith.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS-EXTENSION OF TIME.
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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

I beg to call attention to the fact that for some years past this House has been guilty of very loose habits with regard to the time for receiving petitions for private Bills. It is provided in the British North America Act that no petition shall be presented for a private Bill after the first three weeks of the session and that no private Bill can be presented after the first four weeks of the session. That provision was made, I assume, to enable parliament to deal with its business as expeditiously as possible, and only in case of extreme urgency should the rule be suspended. The House has been now two months in session and parties desiring private legislation should have taken precaution to get that legislation before the House in due time. The rule seems now to be honoured more in the breach than in the observance; it has been so often broken that people think it is a matter of little importance to obey the rule. It is incumbent upon the right hon. gentleman who leads the House to see that the rules are closely observed, so that the business of the session may be transacted within a reasonable time.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS-EXTENSION OF TIME.
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LIB

Wilfrid Laurier (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)

Liberal

Sir WILFRID LAUKIER.

I am forced to say that my hon. friend (Mr. Sproule) is quite right. His criticism is very proper, and to a large extent I agree with him, but as an old parliamentarian he knows that it is very difficult to keep within the rule. My memory goes back quite a number of years, and I do not think that the rule has been more frequently broken this session than any other session. For my part, I do not think that we should agree to accept such petitions unless good cause be shown.

Motion (Mr. R. F. Sutherland) agreed to.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS-EXTENSION OF TIME.
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PETITIONS.

IND

Leighton Goldie McCarthy

Independent

Mr. LEIGHTON MCCARTHY (North Sim-coe) moved :

That the petitions re the Western Assurance Company and the British American Assurance Company be read and received forthwith, and referred to the Select Standing Committee on Standing Orders.

He said : This motion has been rendered necessary by reason of the Toronto conflagration. The Western Assurance Company and the British American Assurance Company find it necessary to issue new stock, and they require legislation for that purpose. They are the two strongest Canadian companies doing business in the fire assurance world, and their application to parliament has been rendered necessary by reason of that great conflagration. I am sure no hon. gentleman will object.

Topic:   PETITIONS.
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Motion agreed to.


FIRST READING.


Bill (No. 104) respecting the Tilsonburg, Lake Erie and Pacific Railway Company.- Mr. Calvert. *


LIB

QUESTIONS.

WOLFORD CENTRE MAIL SERVICE.

CON

Mr. LAVELL asked :

Conservative (1867-1942)

1. Is the mail service at Wolford Centre post office now semi-weekly ?

2. When was it changed from a daily service ?

3. If any change was made, why was it made ?

4. Did the change, if any, lessen the expense of maintaining the office ? If so, how much ?

I-Ion. Sir WILLIAM MULOCK (Postmaster General) :

1. Yes.

2. First of January, 1904.

3. and 4. Wolford Centre was established on the 1st January, 1896, with a semi-weekly service from Easton's Corners. In January. 1900, tills service was amalgamated with Easton's Corners and Irish Creek Station service, and Wolford Centre thus served daily. The contract for this amalgamated service expired on 31st December, 1903. It being considered by the department that a semi-weekly service, having regard to the importance of the Wolford centre post office, would be sufficient to meet all requirements, tenders were invited for separate services as heretofore when no tenders were received for the Wolford Centre service. It was therefore necessary to make a temporary arrangement to supply Wolford Centre semi-weekly. In view of there being no permanent contract, it is not possible to state what the reduction if any will amount to.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   WOLFORD CENTRE MAIL SERVICE.
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WOODSTOCK, N.B., DRILL HALL.

CON

Mr. DANIEL asked :

Conservative (1867-1942)

1. Does the government propose to build a drill hall at Woodstock, N.B. ?

2. Has the site been chosen ?

3. Has the land been purchased ?

4. If so, from whom was the land obtained ? What is the location and area, and what was the price paid ?

5. Does the government own a lot on the corner of Green and Elm streets, in the town of Woodstock, N.B. If not, to whom has it been sold, and at what price ?

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   WOODSTOCK, N.B., DRILL HALL.
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?

Rt. Hon. Sir WILFRID LAURIER (Prime Minister) :

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   WOODSTOCK, N.B., DRILL HALL.
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KINGSTON POST OFFICE INVESTIGATION.

CON

Mr. BRODER asked :

Conservative (1867-1942)

1. Did Chief Inspector Ross hold an investigation at the Kingston post office early in February last ?

2. If so, what was the result of the same, and was the deputy postmaster, one John L. Renton, charged with opening letters in transit through the mails ?

3. Is it correct, as reported in the [DOT] British Whig ' and ' Canadian Freeman,' that Renton was charged by fellow-clerks with tampering with letters ?

'4. Was that the only charge preferred against Renton ?

5. Was he not accused of further conduct of a serious nature ?

6. Is it true, as is reported in that city, that the postmaster, Mr. A. Gunn, has stated his unwillingness to have Renton as his assistant ?

7. Has Renton been absent from duty since the investigation ?

8. Has he been suspended or dismissed ?

9. Will the Postmaster General kindly have all the papers dealing with this and the investigation of 1899 laid on the Table, including the correspondence forwarded by the postmaster at Kingston to the department, in reference to the said John L. Renton's conduct ?

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   KINGSTON POST OFFICE INVESTIGATION.
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?

Hon. Sir WILLIAM MULOCK (Postmaster General):

1. Yes.

2. Yes, and acquitted of the charge.

3. Yes.

4. Yes.

5. No.

G. No.

7. Absent on vacation and since on sick leave.

S. Neither suspended nor dismissed.

9. It is open to the hon. gentleman to move for papers.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   KINGSTON POST OFFICE INVESTIGATION.
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FISHING PRIVILEGES IN CUMBERLAND LAKE.

May 11, 1904