May 3, 1916

LIB

Edward Mortimer Macdonald

Liberal

Mr. MACDONALD:

Is there included in this statement anything that would show the expenditure in paying interest so far as securities are concerned? According to the item in the Supplementary Estimates a certain sum of money is asked to be voted for the purpose of providing for expenditures made or to meet indebtedness incurred in paying interest upon securities having priority over the guaranteed securities authorized by chapter 20, Statutes 1914, and also for expenditures on construction and on equipment. Does the statement which my hon. friend has brought down contain anything in detail that would show who made those expenditures and when they were made? Apparently the appropriation is to recoup some corporation for having made those expenditures. If money has been spent on construction, or equipment, or interest since June, 1914, the statement ought to be made in concise form so that the House will know exactly what are the facts. If there have been any sales by the Canadian Northern since June, 1914, of securities which were in existence at that time or which may have come into existence since, the statement ought to show

clearly that those securities have been sold and what has been done with the proceeds.

Topic:   CANADIAN NORTHERN AND GRAND TRUNK PACIFIC RAILWAYS.
Subtopic:   PROPOSED LOANS.
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CON

William Thomas White (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir THOMAS WHITE:

The statements

which I have presented give full information as to the two latter points referred to by my hon. friend. The statement shows the sales and pledges of securities and their proceeds. It also shows all payments made out of the proceeds, together with the certificates upon which they were paid out. There is also a statement showing, in addition to the funded debt, the short date maturities and the temporary indebtedness of the Canadian Northern Railway Company. That shows, with details, the amount of advances upon interest and construction accounts, and it gives I think, full information as to the current obligations of the company. In other words, the statement which I have filed shows the permanent and the current obligations of the company.

Topic:   CANADIAN NORTHERN AND GRAND TRUNK PACIFIC RAILWAYS.
Subtopic:   PROPOSED LOANS.
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LIB

Edward Mortimer Macdonald

Liberal

Mr. MACDONALD:

Exclusive of bonded indebtedness and of debenture securities, what I would like to have made clear is this: the wording of the item seems to indicate that the money is asked to be voted to repay money spent for indebtedness incurred in paying interest. Is the information furnished sufficient to make that clear?

Topic:   CANADIAN NORTHERN AND GRAND TRUNK PACIFIC RAILWAYS.
Subtopic:   PROPOSED LOANS.
Permalink
CON

William Thomas White (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir THOMAS WHITE:

I think so. The company borrows money from time to time for its purposes. Its borrowings as they stand at present are shown, I think, in sufficient detail, in the statement which I have laid upon the Table.

Topic:   CANADIAN NORTHERN AND GRAND TRUNK PACIFIC RAILWAYS.
Subtopic:   PROPOSED LOANS.
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Motion agreed to.


PARLIAMENTARY LIBRARY ACCOUNTANT.


On motion of Sir Robert Borden, the recommendation of His Honour the Speaker, laid upon the table of the House on the 28th ult., respecting an increase of salary to Mr. Alfred Carter, Accountant of the Library, was concurred in.


DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR.

ORDERS IN COUNCIL APPROVED.

CON

William James Roche (Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs; Minister of the Interior)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. W. J. ROCHE (Minister of the Interior) moved:

That the following Orders in Council, laid on the table of the House on Tuesday, the 25th day of January last, be approved:

1. Orders in Council published in the Canada Gazette and in the British Columbia Gazette, between the 12th of January, 1915, and the 31st of December, 1915, in accordance with sub-section D of section 38 of the regulations for the survey, administration, disposal and management of Dominion lands within the Forty-mile railway belt in the province of British Columbia.

2. Orders in Council which have been published in the Canada Gazette, between the 12th of January, 1915, and the 31st of December, 1915, in accordance with Section 77, Chapter 20, 7-8 Edward VII, the Dominion Lands Act.

3. Orders in Council which have been published in the Canada Gazette, between the 16th of January, 1915, and the 31st December, 1915, in accordance with Section 19 of Chapter 10, 1-2 George V, the Forest Reserves and Parks Act.

4. Orders in Council which have been published in the Canada Gazette, between the 12th of January, 1915, and the '31st December, 1915, in accordance with Chapter 5 of Chapter 21, 7-8 Edward VII, the Dominion Lands Survey Act.

5. Orders in Council which have been published in the Canada Gazette, between the 12th of January, 1915, and the 31st December, 1915, in acordance with Chapter 47, 2 George V, the Railway Belt Water Act.

6. Orders in Council passed under Section 18 of Chapter 63, Revised Statutes of Canada, an Act to provide for the Government of the Yukon territory.

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR.
Subtopic:   ORDERS IN COUNCIL APPROVED.
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LIB

Frank Oliver

Liberal

Hon. FRANK OLIVER:

This resolution to confirm certain Orders in Council is the result of a position taken by the present Premier when leader of the Opposition, who insisted persistently on having this procedure followed, namely, that all Orders in Council passed by the Government should be submitted to Parliament for its approval. I do not know that any great purpose is to be served by this procedure beyond the fact that the presentation of the Orders gives an opportunity of informing the House in regard to their purport and, if necessary, of raising discussion regarding them. It is hardly to be expected that the House would under any circumstances reverse any Order in Council that had been passed, because such reversal would lead to great complications, An Order having taken effect from the time of its being passed, for the House to declare that it was invalid or to refuse to sanction it would, of course, create confusion that would be contrary to the public interest.

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR.
Subtopic:   ORDERS IN COUNCIL APPROVED.
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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Prime Minister; Secretary of State for External Affairs; President of the Privy Council)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir ROBERT BORDEN:

I do not think the question was quite one of reversal. As I remember the legislation, it is to the effect that the Orders in Council shall be in force until the last day of the next succeeding session of Parliament, but not longer, so that, unless during that session they are approved by the House, they would simply cease to have effect. It is pretty much the same thing.

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR.
Subtopic:   ORDERS IN COUNCIL APPROVED.
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LIB

Frank Oliver

Liberal

Mr. OLIVER:

The effect would be practically the same, that an action that had

been taken by the Government would be rendered invalid by the inaction of the House. Further,, in discussing the merits of the procedure, if information is the purpose of it, I think that there is always the possibility of the House becoming informed on consideration of the Estimates of the department concerned, without the necessity of this formality being observed. The statute, however, calls for it and the min- ister has followed the statute, and the Orders in Council have been referred to me by the right hon.-leader of the Opposition for consideration. While I would not presume for a moment to undertake to discuss the vast mass of material that is contained in these many Orders, having gone through them somewhat carefully, I may take the liberty of drawing the attention of the House and of the Government to certain points as being of more or less public interest.

Order No. 1938 grants an irrigation right in the railway Belt of British Columbia to one Layton. The terms are: $5 an acre, with $2 deduction on account of irrigation work. But Order No. 2378 grants to F. W. Anderson a tract in the same railway belt at one dollar an acre with a requirement of only 35 per cent of land to be irrigated. It seems to me there is no good reason for the difference in the treatment accorded these two enterprises under what appear, so far as the Orders in Council are concerned, to be exactly parallel conditions.

A small matter to which I may draw the minister's attention is dealt with by Order in Council of 27th February. This order provides for the destruction of predatory animals and birds in the Dominion parks, but it does not specify what animals or birds are considered " predatory." Therefore, the tourist who undertakes to exercise what he supposes is his right under this Order in Council is liable to get into trouble with the authorities just the same. I would suggest to the minister that when he permits the killing of animals within the park, contrary to the general principle of protecting animal life there, he should specify exactly what animals or birds may be killed.

An Order dated 15th June, 1915, deals with the question of motor vehicles in the parks, and provides that they may be used on roads from which they have hitherto been excluded. For a long time it was considered inadvisable that motors should be, used in the mountain parks, for the obvious reason that the use of motors on the same roads as carriages might result

[Mr. Oliver.3

in very serious accidents where horses were not used to the motors. Now that motors have been permitted in the parks on certain roads, now that the necessities of the case require that the privilege be extended to those who use motors, may I take the opportunity of making a suggestion to the minister. That suggestion is, that provision should be made to test the horses employed in the park, to find out whether they will or will not shy at motor vehicles. This is an important matter to those who are interested. We desire to have these parks patronized by all classes of people, we desire to have them used by motorists and also by those who drive horses. But until the horse becomes used to the motor there is the greatest possible danger to life in the use of the two vehicles on the same road. I should think it very unfortunate to restrict the use of motors. But if motors are to be used, horses should not be used unless they have, so to speak, passed an examination in meeting motors on the road.

I observe a general tendency throughout the regulations to relax conditions that were imposed in previous years. This, I think, is a very proper attitude to be taken by the department. A few years ago, when values of all kinds were rising, when speculation was rife, it was necessary that there should be restrictive regulations to prevent the public property from falling into the hands of speculators to be used for speculative purposes purely. But under the benign rule of our friends opposite the values of property in the West have declined to such an extent-and are still on the down grade-that there is no such thing as speculation now either in land, timber, coal, petroleum, or any other natural resource of which I have knowledge. Therefore, there is no necessity for the maintenance of rigid requirements in order to secure ownership that were absolutely necessary a few years ago. I do not wish to approve of an unfair administration of the law or regulations as showing favouritism, but I decidedly approve of a readjustment of the regulations according to existing conditions, which is what I find in those orders that I have noted.

There is an Order dated 17th April which rescinds a prohibition enacted by a previous order with regard to mining of coal under the right of way of the Grand Trunk Pacific railway. The former Order was passed during the construction of the Grand Trunk Pacific railway, on the application of the railway company, for the safety of the road as it was building. I notice that that

Order is rescinded on the ground that, now that the railroad has been built, it does not matter whether the mining operations are carried on or not. May I draw the attention of the minister to the fact that the purpose of the original order was to assure that the ground under the railroad track should not be undermined. But if it is undermined after the railroad is constructed, the result is just the same as though it had been undermined when the railroad was under construction. Coal seams are very close to the surface in many cases, and if the railroad has no protection in the matter it is quite possible for a man to acquire a coal right, and, by working that coal right, to absolutely wreck the railroad grade it crosses. It may be that such a case would only occur very exceptionally. But to prevent that condition was the purpose of the first order; and I must say, I do not think the minister is well advised in rescinding that order. There is no serious reason why it should be rescinded, and it seems to me there is good reason why it, should be maintained.

I notice in an Order passed May 27, 1915, that the boundaries of gas leases, which, under a former Order, were required to, conform to a certain base line, are. now not required so to conform, the reason given being that as the lessees now do not acquire the surface, there is no reason why the boundary lines should be regular. I submit that it does not make any difference whether the right is acquired on the surface or not, it is just as necessary that the right which is acquired be-low the surface should be ascertainable with as little difficulty as if it were acquired, on the surface. The original regulation that required the boundary lines of gas properties to conform to a certain well understood requirement is just as necessary in the public interest when -the right relates only to, the gas itself as it is if it relates to the surface-indeed, I think inore so, because if it relates to the surface there can easily be surface marks to show where the boundaries are. When it is not related to the surface it is all the more important that every one should know where and in what direction the boundary lines are drawn.

I notice a number of grants to cemetery companies. It has been the custom to make grants of cemetery grounds to churches and municipalities, but I notice that the minister has introduced a system, or practice, of making free grants of land for cemetery purposes to companies. So long as the

property is for the purpose of a cemetery it does not make any serious difference whether it is granted without charge or to whom it may be granted. But it is obvious that if a free grant is made to a company that company may later change its character and the purpose that was in the mind of the Government in granting the cemetery property may toe defeated. It is perfectly right that cemetery property should be granted, and should toe granted free, but I think that it should be granted free only to municipalities or churches which have a corporate existence aside from the business of running a cemetery, and which can be held to an agreement to maintain the property for the purposes for which it was intended. In one case here I notice that a part of a school section has been sold to a cemetery company. That it seems to me, is not an unreasonable proposal. If a cemetery company wishes to acquire land from the Government, it should pay for it at the price that the land is worth and should be subject to all the considerations appertaining to any other company that is doing business with the Government; it should not be on the same footing as a church or a municipality or any other public body or organization.

I notice an Order in Council of August 12, 1915, by which J. A. Fraser, of Portage la Prairie, is granted a hay lease on a quarter section of land at 25 cents an acre. I am not acquainted with the circumstances of the case, but I draw attention to it from the fact that it seems strange that an Order-in Council should be required to enable Mr. Fraser to secure exclusive rights on a certain quarter section. It would seem that if one man has an opportunity to acquire grazing rights or hay rights on, this quarter section, any other man should have equal opportunity. Either there should be general regulations governing the matter of hay leases or no special grant should be made to a special person. I know nothing about the circumstances of the case, but I suggest to the minister that the finding of such instances in this mass of regulations would indicate that there had been favouritism in the matter rather than a regard for the general interest.

I notice a very remarkable Order of September 17, 1915, and if it would not be out of order, Mr. Speaker, I would very much like to have the minister's explanation later of the purposes of the Order. Under this

Order the Churchill Basin, Fish and Traction Company, Limited, are given exclusive rights of occupation of a right of way for a distance of 225 miles. The purpose, as it appears to me, would be to reach some fishing grounds of this company in the north. I am unable by reading the Order to understand what purpose is to be achieved by it, and I hope the minister will be good enough to give us an explanation of its purpose.

I note again an Order dated November 6, 1915, which provides for the auction sale of one school section and of a five-acre piece of another school section, the section to be at the upset price of $7 an acre and the fraction to be at the upset price of $30 an acre. No reason is given in the Order in Council for this special sale being made. It is generally the custom not to sell school lands except in areas; that is to say, the School Lands Branch come to the conclusion that the land in a certain area of townships has reached a good value and they list and put on sale by auction all the school sections within that area. The fact that a large number of sections are on sale attracts buyers and makes the sale important and tends to general success. There may be cases where there is necessity for the disposal of a small parcel of school land. It can only be disposed of by public auction, but I think it is only right that when it is considered necessary to make such disposition the reasons should be stated. No reasons are stated in this Order in Council for dealing with these two pieces of school land in this particular way, and if the minister would be good enough to take note of the matter, I should be glad to have his explanation later on that point.

I notice an Order dated December 9, 1915, the purpose of which is to give protection to the homestead entries made by enlisted men after their enlistment. There are a number of Orders in this bundle of papers making provision for the protection of homesteaders and miners and others holding rights on the public domain who have enlisted in the military forces. These orders are for their protection during the period of their enlistment, and in most cases to give them credit for the work they do for the country or the Empire, as if it were done on their homesteads. Everybody will agree that that is right and proper. This order of which I speak is in a somewhat different class. The former Orders, of which I spoke, gave protection to men who have already enlisted and made their plans of life to occupy either land

[Mr. Oliver. 1

or mining property, and who have given up those plans and prospects for the purpose of serving their country. This order provides, that the man who has enlisted can, after his enlistment, go and make an entry for the land and be protected, and have the benefit of that land as though he had occupied it before his enlistment. That is to say, this Order in Council gives a bonus of a quarter-section of land to the man who enlists. I am not discussing the merits of 'the case; it may be that that is a desirable policy to pursue, but it is well that we should understand that that is what we are doing, that we are giving the man who enlists now a bonus of a homestead for enlisting without residence or practically duties, as I understand it.

It would be impossible, of course, to deal thoroughly with the vast mass of departmental work that is contained in this file. The file having been brought down, I thought it was only proper that I should draw the minister's attention and the attention of the House, to such points as I happened to be able to notice in an examination of the documents. There are many other matters that might 'be dealt with, but I do not think that at this stage of the session it would toe wise to take up the time of 'the House at any greater length. But I would be glad if the minister would explain to the House the points to which I have drawn his attention. I shall toe very glad to agree to the passing of the resolution.

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR.
Subtopic:   ORDERS IN COUNCIL APPROVED.
Permalink
CON

William James Roche (Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs; Minister of the Interior)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. W. J. ROCHE (Minister of the Interior) :

Believing that these Orders in Council would be disposed of in the manner that they have been disposed of every year when submitted to Parliament, and formally approved of, I have not been able to get the information necessary to give an explanation in detail other than is contained in the Orders in Council. I cannot therefore enter into as minute an explanation as otherwise I would have liked to make, but I will refer to a few of the points which have been raised, trusting that my personal knowledge will enable me to reply to the hon. gentleman. The only explanation I can give as to the difference between the prices charged in connection with lands for irrigation purposes in the railway belt is that there was a time when the lands in the railway belt were sold for $3 an acre with a rebate of $2 per acre on the completion of the irrigation works. But these regulations were changed so that we now sell the lands at $5 an acre

instead of $3 as heretofore. That pretty-well explains the difference between the two eases, although I am not at all sure as to the dates. There -might have been some special considerations in connection with these cases which I will have looked up, and I will afford the hon. gentleman the explanation later on. I -quite 'agree with his suggestion as to specifying the predatory animals and birds in the Orders in Council. Of course, it may necessitate frequent Orders in Council, or frequent amendments in Orders in Council, but that is not a great hardship, and we can easily conform to that.

In regard to the suggestion about examining the horses that are driven in the parks to test them -so as to determine whether or not they will shy at motor vehicles, I do not know whether that would be practicable or not. I doubt whether we have jurisdiction over all those horses. No doubt we have jurisdiction to a certain extent over the horses that are allowed in the parks, but I am aifruid it would be rather a large order if all the horses were to be examined to see if they were afraid of motor vehicles.

In regard to the grants for cemeteries, we have been granting sites for cemeteries where it was an organized company, a municipality, or a church, that applied, but we make the express stipulation that they are not to be utilized for any other purpose, so that that will bind them down specifically to the purposes of a cemetery site.

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR.
Subtopic:   ORDERS IN COUNCIL APPROVED.
Permalink
LIB

Frank Oliver

Liberal

Mr. OLIVER:

I note that one of these Orders in Council refers simply to the people of Centre View, Rev. John Prior, without any suggestion that a company is being organized.

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR.
Subtopic:   ORDERS IN COUNCIL APPROVED.
Permalink
?

Mr ROCHE:

No doubt that was in connection with a church. Very likely they have a church, and have applied for a cemetery site in connection with it. I quite agree that the school lands stand on a different footing from Dominion lands, inasmuch as school lands are held as a trust, and it is only right that we should not grant them free. They are usually disposed of by public auction or at a valuation. In connection with the hay lease to one Fraser, I have a dim recollection of that case, and I think the explanation is that these were not ordinary Dominion lands but lands surrounding lake Manitoba, most of which were under water. But Mr. Fraser was a stock man with a large number of stock, and not having sufficient land on which to

run this stock, he applied for a lease of some of the lands that had been revested in the Dominion from the province. I think that is the explanation of the lease in this case. I do not know that there was any conflicting application, and therefore there would not be any desire to show partiality to Mr. Fraser. With regard to the Churchill Basin Fish and Traction Company's right of way, I understand that that is a road that has a provincial charter, and we dealt with this charter just the same as we do with applications from other railways. An official of the department in a memorandum submitted to me said he saw no reason why he should discriminate against those having provincial charters, and only grant the right of way to those holding Dominion charters. I believe it is a road which joins with the Hudson Bay road on the way to Churchill and therefore it has a provincial charter.'

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR.
Subtopic:   ORDERS IN COUNCIL APPROVED.
Permalink
LIB

Frank Oliver

Liberal

Mr. OLIVER:

Is it suggested that this

is to be a railway?

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR.
Subtopic:   ORDERS IN COUNCIL APPROVED.
Permalink
CON

William James Roche (Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs; Minister of the Interior)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ROCHE:

Yes.

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR.
Subtopic:   ORDERS IN COUNCIL APPROVED.
Permalink
LIB

Frank Oliver

Liberal

Mr. OLIVER:

The reason that I drew

attention to it was that I understood that it was intended to be a wagon or trail road, and I wanted to know particularly if the rights granted to the Company would prevent other people from using it.

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR.
Subtopic:   ORDERS IN COUNCIL APPROVED.
Permalink
CON

William James Roche (Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs; Minister of the Interior)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ROCHE:

It is a railway right of

way. As to the sale of the school section and of five acres of another section, a municipality may ask to have a particular section put up for sale, for something in connection with municipal purposes, and it may desire to have a sale before the general sales take place because the general sales only take place once every two or three years. Our policy in regard to putting up the school lands for sale is that before the land is offered, we secure the consent of the provincial government and we submit a statement of the lands that are going to be offered for sale and of the places where the sales are going to be held. We have done that in connection with the sales which are to be held this coming summer.

With regard to the protection of the homesteading rights of those who have enlisted, I think the hon. gentleman has probably misinterpreted the Order in Council. He states that we are giving practically the same protection to the soldier who has made his homestead entry after enlistment as we are giving to the man who was the owner of a homestead prior to enlistment.

But there is a difference in our treatment of these two men. The man who had a homestead prior to enlistment has not only protection in so far as not allowing cancellation proceedings to be instituted, but he is also allowed to count as time of residence on his homestead the time that he is serving his country at the front. In the case of the volunteer who makes a homestead* entry after enlistment, he is not allowed to count his time but he is protected from cancellation. I will draw the attention of the officers of the department to the suggestions which have been made by my hon. friend in regard to the manner in which some Orders in Council might be improved, and also to the other suggestions which he has made in order that they may have every consideration.

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR.
Subtopic:   ORDERS IN COUNCIL APPROVED.
Permalink

May 3, 1916