May 4, 1908

DOMINION ELECTIONS ACT.

?

Mr. PUGSLEY W. H.@

With your permission, Sir, I would take opportunity to refer to what my hon. friend from Halton (Mr. Henderson) said Friday last in the course of the debate on the Estimates. Referring to my hon. colleague the Minister of Public Works (Mr. Pugsley), he used these expressions :

The hon. gentleman is very anxious to get his money, but there are measures on the Order Paper we never hear of and it seems to me he should advise his colleagues to bring some of those forward before he exhausts his estimates. To my mind there are important measures that ought to be dealt with before we deal with those estimates. I do not believe in leaving those to the end of the session when every one is anxious to get home and when proper consideration cannot be given them.

If this means anything, it means that in the mind of my hon. friend, and perhaps in the minds of hon. gentlemen opposite, the impression prevails that if we get our Estimates through, we might abandon what remains on the Order Paper, notably the Election Bill. We have no such intention. We intend proceeding with that measure but we tried to get the Estimates through because we thought they were the most pressing. It is immaterial to us in what order we take up the government measures, but when we have moved the House into Supply we have made but little progress. To meet the views of my hon. friend, I now give notice that to-morrow we shall take up the Election Bill.

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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. R. L. BORDEN.

Will my right h6n. friend state whether or not there are any other Bills to be brought down by the government this session ?

Sir WILFRID LAURIER, Yes, there is the Manitoba Boundary Bill and one or two others.

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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. R. L. BORDEN.

What are the other measures ?

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LIB

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

Liberal

Sir WILFRID LAURIER.

I cannot give an answer off-hand but will to-morrow.

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OLD AGE PENSION BILL.

CON

Robert Abercrombie Pringle

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. PRINGLE.

I would like to ask my hon. friend, the Minister of Labour, when he intends proceeding with the Old Age Pension Bill which has been referred to a committee.

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LIB

Rodolphe Lemieux (Minister of Labour; Postmaster General)

Liberal

Hon. RODOLPHE LEMIEUX (Minister of Labour).

Not seeing the hon. gentleman here for a few days, I did not want to convene the committee in his absence. I intend calling it this week, and if suitable to my hon. friend will give notice for Thursday.

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INQUIRIES FOR RETURNS.

CON

SASKATCHEWAN POWER COMPANY.


House in committee to consider Bill (No. 153) to incorporate the Saskatchewan Power Company.-Mr. McCraney.


LIB

William Pugsley (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY.

I do not desire to take any strong objection to this Bill, if it is the view of the committee that it should pass. But I would call attention to the fact that it is purely local in its character. It is a Bill to incorporate a company for the development of a water power on the Saskatchewan river, simply in one province. I would think myself that this is peculiarly an undertaking which ought to be under the control of the province, and that the company ought to be incorporated by the province. I do not know whether the committee to which the Bill was referred has given that matter consideration. My own view would be that progress should be reported, and that this point should be considered. If we keep on, we may before long be in conflict with the province of Saskatchewan, just as we are with the province of Ontario.

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CON

John Graham Haggart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. HAGGART.

This Bill proposes to deal with a navigable stream. I do not think it would be under the jurisdiction of tile province.

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CON

David Henderson

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hr. HENDERSON.

I raised the same question on Friday last when this Bill was before the committee. X quite agree with what the Minister of Public Works has said.

I think this is purely a provincial matter, but I may be mistaken. One of the members for Saskatchewan gave an explanation the other day, and perhaps he will repeat it to-day. To my mind, this is a provincial matter, and should not be dealt with here.

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LIB

William Pugsley (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY.

If I may be allowed to give an illustration of the mode in which questions like this should be dealt with-in the province of New Brunswick we have frequently incorporated companies to construct works of this, character, to establish booms and that sort of thing in navigable rivers, and then the company avails itself of the provision of the federal law which requires that before interfering with a navigable river there shall be an approval of the works by the Minister of Public Works for Canada. But the incorporation of the company, it seems to me, properly belongs to the provincial legislature, because by the terms of the British North America Act a provincial legislature is exclusively invested with power to incorporate companies for carrying on local undertakings with local objects.

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LIB

George Ewan McCraney

Liberal

Mr. McCRANEY.

I understand the objection of the Minister of Public Works (Mr. Pugslev) is based on the ground that the incorporation of the gentlemen who are named here should be undertaken by the province, and that then permission should be obtained from the Dominion parliament for the use of those waters.

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LIB

William Pugsley (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY.

From the Minister of Public Works, under the revised statutes relating to navigable waters.

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LIB

George Ewan McCraney

Liberal

Mr. McCRANEY.

By this Bill we are coming here for the authority of the Dominion parliament to use the waters of the South Saskatchewan river under terms which are set forth in the Bill. True, we could go to the provincial legislature and get incorporation, 'but that would involve a delay, which we desire to avoid. This Parliament could give the rights which we ask to individuals, who could assign those rights which they acquire to a company to be incorporated by the provincial legislature. I think, however, it is much better that we in this parliament who give the right to make use of the river, should also incorporate the persons to whom it is intended that these powers should be given as a corporate body, and that we should set forth the powers which are incidental to that incorporation. If the minister wishes to Mr. PUGSLEY.

have it stand for further consideration, I can offer no objection.

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LIB

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

Liberal

Sir WILFRID LAURIER.

Stand.

Progress reported.

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May 4, 1908