The purchasing agent should be allowed to purchase wherever he wishes to. But I know what will happen [DOT]-there will be no difference from the condition of affairs we have known. The minister speaks of calling for tenders for over $5,000, but there are many purchases that aggregate same $5,000 to $40,000, the purchases made in small quantities.
Yes. The minister shakes his head. He has many times questioned the accuracy of my statements, and yet I think I have established them all. I can take the Auditor General's Report and show where he has purchased for the use of the department $10,000 from one person in the course of a year and has paid retail prices. Now, what the department ought to do is to follow the course taken by the Department of Railways and Canals some years ago. Seeing that the same goods were purchased from time to time, tenders were asked for the supply of these goods for a year, and the different centres of. departmental work were supplied as required. But I can foresee what will happen-the minister will give tlie purchasing agent a list of names of merchants, and the purchasing agent will buy from these at retail prices ; he will purchase $5,000 worth at the same rates, that I would purchase $5 worth. The hon. gentleman knows that his deputy minister declared before Judge Cassels that had the purchases been made at wholesale rates, as he had urged should be done, $200,000 would have been saved under the present minister. I have no doubt that in the next three years another $200,000 will be lost.
Department of Public Works-to provide for the increase in salary of the ohief clerk appointed to the position of Assistant Deputy
Minister of Public Works at $3,600 per annum, from April 1, 1908, $1,650
There is nobody in Paris, that I am aware of, buying books for us. There was a proposition made last year when a vote of $5,000 was taken, that the money should be handed to a dealer in books living in Montreal, and that he should get all the books he could for that amount. I declined to sanction such an arrangement, and the money was left to be expended under the supervision of the judges, by the registrar of the court. The books wanted were particularly in the line of French civil law, and the work of purchasing them was to be supervised by the Chief Justice and Mr. Justice Girouard. But no one has been commissioned to make purchases in the old country, so far as I know.