March 12, 1915

LIB
CON

John Dowsley Reid (Minister of Customs)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. REID:

At all events, the question was asked. Was it fair to ask such a question as this:

Is it. the intention of the Government to take steps to recover from the said H. p. Duchemin the money so obtained by him? '

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie

Liberal

Mr. McKENZIE:

I did not ask that question.

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
CON

John Dowsley Reid (Minister of Customs)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. REID:

Well, it was asked by the hon. member for Guysborough. The answer was that the statements made in 1914, as recorded in Hansard were untrue.

The hon. member for North Cape Breton has made the statement that Mr. Duchemin sent to the Customs Department six different accounts, that is, an account for each of the six men on whom an investigation was held. That is not in accordance with the facts.

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie

Liberal

Mr. McKENZIE:

I do not wish any misunderstanding about this matter. I had these six accounts in my hand when I was speaking. They are now in charge of the Hansard reporters.

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
CON

John Dowsley Reid (Minister of Customs)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. REID:

'That is the only account the . Customs Department ever received from Mr. Duchemin with regard to the investigations into the cases of these men, so far as I am aware, and he does not say that this is the account for one day. He states that he was engaged on other days, and in his letter-

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie

Liberal

Mr. McKENZIE:

How does the minister explain the documents laid before the House by the Secretary of State? I moved for the documents, and the Secretary of State brought down six distinct bills. I am not responsible for these documents.

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
CON

John Dowsley Reid (Minister of Customs)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. REID:

The hon. member is entitled to an explanation of that matter, and I will come to it in a moment. I say again, Mr. Duchemin rendered only one account for these investigations. Now, the hon. member knows very well that the Order in Council provides that a commissioner shall be paid $15 a day while engaged in these investigations. He knows that Mr. Duchemin would have to travel from his place of residence to the place where the investigations were to be held and also to other places for the serving of subpoenas. Therefore it would be impossible to hold these investigations in one day. The hon. gentleman stated here to-day that all the returns of these investigations had left Mr. Duche-min's hands on the 7th of September.

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie

Liberal

Mr. McKENZIE:

On the 9th of September.

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
CON

John Dowsley Reid (Minister of Customs)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. REID:

Yes, I wish to correct that; it was on the 9th of September that the last one left his hands. The hon. member asks why there were these accounts. In his statement he led the House to believe that there were six accounts rendered, all dated 6th September. I have before me a copy of the return laid on the table of the House, and an exact copy of that which the hon. member read, and here is one of the accounts exactly the same as appears in Hansard as read by the hon. member, and there is no date whatever on that account.

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie

Liberal

Mr. McKENZIE:

I am sure the minister wishes to be fair. If he will look at the six accounts of Mr. Duchemin as furnished by the Secretary of State, he will see that the investigation was held on the 6th.

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
CON

John Dowsley Reid (Minister of Customs)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. REID:

I admit that one investigation was held on that date; but Mr. Duchemin goes on to show in his letter that he had to travel on other days and he had to serve subpoenas. He shows that he did other work besides the investigation held on that day. The hon. member states that six accounts were rendered by Mr. Duchemin. That is not in accordance with the fact. Perhaps the hon. member may have misunderstood these accounts.

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie

Liberal

Mr. McKENZIE:

Mr. Speaker, I submit this to Your Honour: We had this matter properly before us, and I was reading from the record of the House given me by the Secretary of State. That record is in the possession of the House. I submit to Your Honour that it is not fair to me that the minister should read from another and entirely different record. There is only one record given me by the Government, and I submit that the minister should read from that record.

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
CON

John Dowsley Reid (Minister of Customs)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. REID:

I am reading from an exact copy. This document is entitled:

Return to an Order of the House of Commons, March 31:

" That the proper officer do lay before this House a copy of all charges, correspondence, letters, telegrams and other documents relative to the dismissal of Rod McLeod, boatman in the customs service at Big Bras D'or, North Cape Breton and Victoria, N.S., and of

the evidence taken and reports of the investigation held by H. P. Duchemin in regard to same, with a detailed statement of the expenses of such investigation."

I think that is what the hon. member read from. The Order of the House called for a detailed statement of the expenses of the investigation. On making inquiries in the Customs Department with reference to this return, I find that the official of the department took this account of Mr. Duchemin for $126.55, and, as the hon. member for North Cape Breton had asked for a return for each of the men named in these charges, the official divided this account equally, or nearly equally, amongst these eases, and in that form the return was laid on the table. The only way the official could eoime to a conclusion as to what the costs were in the several oases was to divide the account equally in the way I have indicated.

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie

Liberal

Mr. McKENZIE:

The minister will be surprised to find that the accounts put down so much for ferry, so much for dinner, etc., in each bill. I do not understand how the officers of the department could do that.

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
CON

John Dowsley Reid (Minister of Customs)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. REID:

The accounts laid on the table were: " Allowance for living expenses, 5 days, $15," and so on.

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie

Liberal

Mr. McKENZIE:

Will the minister give the details of the six accounts to which I referred?

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
CON

John Dowsley Reid (Minister of Customs)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. REID:

I am giving the hon. member the information which I have in connection with the Customs Department; I am informed that the account was divided up as I have stated. The hon. member says that Mr. Duchemin, in connection with an investigation held on one day, the 6th, charged for six days' work. If the hon. member will refer to Mr. Duchemin's letter of June 21, he will see that on September 2 Mr. Duchemin travelled from Sydney to Sydney mines, conferred with Mr. McCormick, arranged docket and so on.

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie

Liberal

Mr. McKENZIE:

That has nothing to do with the case I am dealing with. *

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink
CON

John Dowsley Reid (Minister of Customs)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. REID:

I am surprised that the hon. gentleman should make that statement. Mr. Duchemin said in his letter that he was travelling, serving subpoenas, and so on, on those different days.

Topic:   QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE.
Subtopic:   COMMISSIONER DUCHEMIN'S ACCOUNTS.
Permalink

March 12, 1915