May 10, 1909

LIB

William Pugsley (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY.

That was repealed. That was in the Act quite a number of years ago, but it has been repealed, and such railways are declared to be for the general advantage of Canada only as to the point of junction. I think it was repealed in 1893.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. R. L. BORDEN.

Some doubt has been expressed as to whether a declaration of that kind can be repealed. In fact since this was repealed there was some question raised about it in the House. I would suggest to my hon. friend the Minister of Railways that if the. policy which he has outlined is wise-I am not disposed to discuss that question just now-it would be better to enter into negotiations with the governments of the various provinces, and then pass some general statute declaring that railways connected with the Intercolonial, with the Canalian Pacific Rail-

way, with the National Transcontinental, or with other great interprovincial lines, should be considered works for the general advantage of Canada, and in that way .settle once for all the principle upon which parliament shall proceed, having secured the views of the provinces. Then we would have a general statute, instead of having the question come up in individual cases, and determined perhaps on partisan considerations. I venture to submit that to the government as possibly a wise couse, if this policy is to be purused.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
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IND

William Findlay Maclean

Independent Conservative

Mr. W. F. MACLEAN.

The proper test of the new doctrine laid down by the Minister of Railways is the efficiency of the Railway Commission and the general Railway Act of this country. Fortunately that commission is in a fairly good shape, and the general Railway Act is in fairly good shape. But in order to commend the new principle to the country we will have to show that the Railway Act is kept up to date, and that the Railway Commission is in every sense efficient.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
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LIB

James Conmee

Liberal

Mr. CONMEE.

I wish to point out, in answer to some of the remarks that fell from the hon. member for Lincoln (Mt. Lancaster), that when this Bill was before the Railway Committee that hon. gentleman, with some others, contended that the railway municipal board of the province could deal with this subject much better than could the Railway Commission of the Dominion. I may say that I was not opposed to the Bill in the Railway Committee, nor am I opposed to it now. 1 agree with the Minister of Railways that this class of Bill, if passed, is better dealt with by the machinery under the Railway Act of the Dominion than by the machinery under the province. But the new doctrine that has been laid down that this kind of legislation is not to be proceeded with until we hear from the govern ment of Toronto should be followed in this case.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
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CON

Edward Arthur Lancaster

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LANCASTER.

Do you subscribe to that doctrine?

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
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LIB

James Conmee

Liberal

Mr. CONMEE.

I am speaking of the doctrine laid down by the hon. gentleman and his friends opposite.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
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CON

Edward Arthur Lancaster

Conservative (1867-1942)

Air. LANCASTER.

Do you agree with it?

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
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LIB

James Conmee

Liberal

Mr. CONMEE.

I will tell the hon. gentleman when the time comes what my opinions are. I am discussing now the position of my hon. friends opposite. _ They have held up one or two Bills in this House until the local government could be communicated with, Bills that are much less a violation of provincial rights, if such a question is involved, than this Bill is. Yet here is a Bill which because it is introduced by one of their own number, they accept it, and fling all their principles

of provincial rights to the winds, and ask that this Bill go through, without any intimation from the government at Toronto, without a letter, without an order in council, without anything whatever.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
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CON

Edward Arthur Lancaster

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LANCASTER.

Is the hon. gentleman talking to me now? Because if he is, he is all wrong. I was consistent, he is inconsistent. I do not care who the promoter of the Bill was, I did not care anything about that in the Railway Committee. What my hon. friend from East Grey (Mr. SpToule) and myself fought for was that this Bill ought not to pass because we thought it was an invasion of provincial rights. Now that the hon. member for Rainy River has got his own Bill through he seems to be converted. He had better go to the Senate and tell the senators that he has been converted on this question of provincial rights, and ask them not to pass his own Bill.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
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LIB

James Conmee

Liberal

Mr. CONMEE.

Then the hon. member has been converted to the view that was expressed by myself and others in the Railway Committee; he has abandoned his principles.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
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CON

Edward Arthur Lancaster

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LANCASTER.

Not at all-I do not intend to be misrepresented here by the hon. gentleman. I have been absolutely consistent in this matter. I said frankly to the Minister of Railways that although I disagreed with him, I knew I was in a hopeless minority in the Railway Committee. What does the hon. member for Rainy River want? Does he want us to state what the facts are? Is he going to try to quarrel with an hon. gentleman who states what happened, and who agrees with the Minister of Railways himself? I am [DOT] bound by the majority in the Railway Committee, I have respect for the majority of the Railway Committee, although I may still think that they are wrong on that principle. But I want to tell the hon. member for Rainy River that he himself is inconsistent in this House, absolutely and hopelessly inconsistent-I cannot go any further without invading the rules of the House, and I won't do it. Now one word to the Minister of Railways in regard to this sort of legislation. There is a section of the Railway Act which deals with this class of Railway-I am submitting this to the judgment of the House. If a majority of this House wants the Bill to go through,

I am willing to be bound by the majority. But I want to call the attention of the committee to something they have overlooked. Section 8 of the Railway Act is not yet repealed, and it deals with this class of railwav. It says that this Act shall apply even to a provincial railway if it intersects, or crosses, or connects with a Dominion railway. That is why, in the Railway Com-

mittee, I thought that this company ought to have a provincial charter. The Dominion Railway Act must apply to it for certain specific purposes. When a Dominion railway connects with a provincial railway, it has the benefit of the Railway Act; the Board of Railway Commissioners control it in regard to crossings, and traffic. All matters relating to navigable waters, traffic rates, tolls, crossings, and everything of that kind, are dealt with by the Railway Commission, even though the railway remains under a provincial charter. Therefore, I thought we did not need to give the railway a Dominion charter. But so far as I am concerned, if the House thinks that it is better to give it a Dominion charter, I am willing to bow to the will of the majority.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
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LIB

James Conmee

Liberal

Mr. CONMEE.

I think I am quite consistent. I was in favour of the Bill when it was in the Railway Committee for the very Teason that has been explained to the committee by the Minister of Railways, for the reason that I believed that railway operation, railway construction, and the general interest of the public, are better provided for under the Dominion statute, in the control of the Dominion Board, than they are under the provincial system. But the hon. member seems to think that 1 am inconsistent because, in the Railway Committee, I called attention to the position taken by him on other Bills of a similar character. I think it is not out of the way for me to call the attention of the committee to that fact. Hon. gentlemen have from day to day made loud professions of their devotion to the principle of provincial rights; and now, in the case of this Bill, the hon. member for Lincoln acknowledges that although that was his view in the Railway Committee, he is now willing to swallow his principles-

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
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CON

Edward Arthur Lancaster

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LANCASTER.

No, I said the very opposite.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
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LIB

James Conmee

Liberal

Mr. CONMEE.

-and willing to act in obedience to the order of the majority of the Railway Committee. Why was he not willing to act in obedience to the order of a standing committee of this House-the Standing Committee on Private Bills?

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
Permalink
CON

Edward Arthur Lancaster

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LANCASTER.

I am not a member of it and I do not know what happened there.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
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LIB

James Conmee

Liberal

Mr. CONMEE.

The hon. gentleman knew from the records of the House perfectly well that the Bill in respect to which he made such great professions was carried by a majority of the private Bills Committee, yet he did not want to sacrifice his principles.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
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CON

Edward Arthur Lancaster

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LANCASTER.

I was not a member of the committee.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
Permalink
CON

Edward Arthur Lancaster

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LANCASTER.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
Permalink
LIB

James Conmee

Liberal

Mr. CONMEE.

I want to put the hon. gentleman where he belongs. He has abandoned his principles and he cannot get out of that position.

Motion (Mr. Conmee) negatived, Bill reported, read the third time and passed.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS.
Subtopic:   THESSALON AND NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY.
Permalink

CONSIDERED IN COMMITTEE-THIRD READINGS.

May 10, 1909