May 3, 1916

CON
LIB
CON

John Dowsley Reid (Minister of Customs)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. REID:

Only in this one case. I

remember a ease that occurred in the month of March in this very city. A member of this House took his train at the station here at eleven o'clock at night, but woke at six o'clock to, find that the train had started and had come back, and he did not reach Toronto until six o'clock the following night. The whole service must not be judged by a delay through a snow blockade. The hon. gentleman has sent me a time table which states that between Newcastle and Loggieville, a distance of eighteen miles, the train leaves Newcastle at 12.05 and arrives at 12.55-so that it takes fifty minutes. And we have four or five trains during the day. Yet the hon. member tries to make the Committee believe that it takes three hours for the train between Newcastle and Loggieville.

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LIB

William Stewart Loggie

Liberal

Mr. LOGGIE:

I said it took three hours on this occasion, but in the regular way it takes an hour and a half. The train is due at Newcastle from Fredericton at 11.30, and according to the time table it is due at Chatham at 12.55. In other words, it takes an hour and twenty-five minutes to go .a distance which is five miles in a straight line and 13 miles by the railway.

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CON

John Dowsley Reid (Minister of Customs)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. REID:

With regard to the inquiry

of the hon. member for Westmorland as to the New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island railway, the information that I have with reference to the expenditure of $129,600 is as follows:

Upon completion of the Prince Edward Island ferry terminals at Cape Tormentine, N.B., and Carleton Point, P.E.I., the hulk of the traffic between the Intercolonial railway and Prince Edward Island railway will be handled over the New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island railway.

In order to handle this increased traffic and the larger locomotives which will be required for same it is necessary that the bridges be strengthened. It is, therefore, proposed to re-

place five of them with pile trestles and three with wooden stringers, and the bridge at Baie Verte with steel spans on concrete piers and abutments, which is estimated to cost $56,500.

It is also necessary to replace old 56 pound rail with 80 pound branch line rail at an estimated cost of $69,000. Ballast is also required at points which are not now ballasted, at a cost of $3,100.

In order properly to operate this additional traffic it is necessary to have a telegraph line, estimated to cost $1,000. The total amount re-qnored for 1916-17 is $129,600.

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LIB

William Stewart Loggie

Liberal

Mr. LOGGIE:

I hope the minister will

promise that some change will be made to remedy the serious state of affairs to which I have called his attention.

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CON

John Dowsley Reid (Minister of Customs)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. REID:

I will take this matter up

with the minister and with the management with a. view to seeing if the grievance stated by the hon member is one that would justify a change in the present train service, whether anything can be done to remedy the conditions.

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LIB

Arthur Bliss Copp

Liberal

Mr. COPP:

I want to say a word or two with reference to the unsatisfactory train arrangements to Which the member . for Northumberland has called attention, and to the carrying on of the Intercolonial business in the Maritime provinces at the present time. A few evenings ago the member for Northumberland drew attention to the way his county had been used in the matter of railway accommodation. At the mere whim or fancy of the general manager of the Intercolonial railway, the railway accommodation which these people had enjoyed for upw'ards of 30 years was taken from them; the railway 1 was torn up and the people left without proper railway accommodation. The efforts of the acting minister to-night have been in the nature of his acting as apologist for the Minister of Railways and the general manager of the Intercolonial Railway, and in that respect I sympathize with him very much indeed. The acting minister told the hon. member for Northumberland that these 15 or 20 miles of railway had been torn up and taken away because upon examination and investigation it was found that that portion of the Intercolonial did not pay. That is a very poor excuse indeed. If that same argument were used in reference tb other portions of the Intercolonial railway or in reference to other railways throughout Canada, many miles of railway would he dismantled and torn up, and the people would be deprived of proper railway accommodation. During the last fiscal year there was a deficit on the portion of the National Transcontinental Railway that the Government has been operating of

$86,313.70, aside from the consideration that in the operation of the road by the Government certain equipment, cars, and engines of the Intercolonial railway were used. Although my hon. friend says that it is all right to subject the country to the loss of $86,000 in connection with the operation of that part of the Transcontinental Railway, it was entirely irregular and out of reason that the railway in the county of Northumberland, proving not to be profitable, should continue in operation. It must be torn up because, forsooth, it did not pay a proper dividend upon the investment made by the Government in that portion of the railway. If we take the St. John and Quebec railway, which the Government have been operating during the past year, we find that in the operation of that road also there was a deficit of $5,955. Yet my hon. friend to-day asked this House to pass a resolution in favour of giving more aid to that railway, although he has torn up the road in the county of Northumberland, whicn my hon. friend has the honour to represent. The same thing is true with regard to the International Railway, which has recently been purchased by the Government as a feeder of the Intercolonial. In connection with its operation last year there was a deficit of $1,237. According to the argument of my hon. friend the acting minister, instead of purchasing the International Railway they should have stopped operation, torn up the tracks and junked the whole road. The Government paid $270,000 for the road that I have just inquired about, the New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island Railway. They immediately expended upon it about $25,000, and in the estimates that were passed the oither day a further amount of $129,000 was provided for this same road. During 8 months of last year there was a deficit in the operation of this road of $18,522.72. Under these circumstances I do not think that the minister has made a satisfactory answer to the complaint of the member for Northumberland with regard to the dismantling of the road in his constituency. When that road was torn up the people of the locality were promised that bridges would be built across the river so that the farmers would be able to get some railway accommodation by getting access to the railway on the other side of said river.

Yet this Government, in spite of the fact that the manager of the Intercolonial went there and destroyed that railway, has never given the slightest evidence of trying to

carry out the promise made in regard to building bridges across the river to give those people who have suffered the loss of accommodation some compensation. I sincerely trust that the Acting Minister of Railways will try to impress upon the Minister of Railways, the desirability of trying to persuade the general . manager to do something for the benefit of that locality.

I wish to refer for a few moments to the general operation of the Intercolonial railway. My hon. friend the acting minister said to-night that it was because of a heavy snowstorm in March that the trains were late and that our friends from the county of Northumberland had the experience which has been related. I regret very much that the acting minister has not had an opportunity of visiting the Maritime Provinces and of looking into the railway situation there, for, let me tell him, and I am sure that every hon. member from the Maritime Provinces, whether he supports this Government or sits on this side of the House, will agree with me, that there is a great deal of dissatisfaction in regard to the operation of the Intercolonial railway in the Maritime Provinces. There are several reasons for that dissatisfaction. During the past few years, and I am bound to say that the complaints have not been confined to the period during which the present Government has held office, the head of the Department of Railways has endeavoured to unload a certain amount of responsibility for the operation of the Intercolonial railway on the general manager or on the board of management. I do not propose to-night to go into any lengthy argument as to what claims the Maritime Provinces can well make in regard to the operation of that railway. That has been threshed out in this House many times, and on every public platform in the Maritime Provinces, but I do say that the Minister of Railways, I care not to what Government he belongs, cannot rid himself of the responsibility for the operation of the Intercolonial railway. You may import general managers from where you like, or you may have boards of management, or ' what you will, but the responsibility for the operation of that road still rests upon the Government represented by the Minister of Railways. The present management of the Intercolonial is most unsatisfactory in -many respects. I would suggest to the Acting Minister of Railways, if he intends to remain in charge of that department for some time, to go down

to the Maritime Provinces, not on a flying trip and not with the view of letting the papers say how quickly the trains can rush along, but on a visit that will enable him to personally look into the railway situation and realize, as I believe he would realize, the most unsatisfactory condition which prevails in regard to the operation of that railway. I do not believe that it was ever the intention or the expectation of any Government that the Intercolonial railway should yield a surplus to be paid into the consolidated revenues of this country. It is all very well for the minister to tell us that last year itAproduced a surplus of $2,000,000. Is that correct?

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CON

John Dowsley Reid (Minister of Customs)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. REID:

I said that there was a surplus, but I want to add this: The hon. member understands that if at any time the Intercolonial railway had a surplus, not only during the regime of the present Government, but throughout the 16 years when the Liberal party were in power, it went back to the Intercolonial railway; it never went into the Consolidated Revenue Fund. There was never a dollar of profit from the Intercolonial railway that went into Consolidated revenue. If -there was a surplus, the Intercolonial got the benefit of it.

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LIB

Arthur Bliss Copp

Liberal

Mr. COPP:

I quite understand that. I was going to say that it is very easy to show a surplus or a deficit in connection with the Intercolonial railway or any other public institution; it is merely a matter of bookkeeping. But if there was a surplus, no credit is due to the Government, or to the general manager, or to the officials of that -road, because the surplus comes fro-m the pockets of the people who pay the freight charges. The freight rates on the Intercolonial railway have increased very materially during the past few years. I cannot say exactly what the percentage of increase has been, but the rates have been increased from time to time, and that increase is the result of the expensive management of that railway. We all know in the Maritime Provinces, as every member of this House knows, the late manager of the Intercolonial railway, Mr. Pottinger. He was general manager for many years, and, if my memory serves me rightly, he never received more than $7,000 a year. I grant that for a time the railway did not go so far as Montreal, but, for some years after the railway was extended to . Montreal, that gentleman managed the Intercolonial railway at a salary of $7,000 a year, and; every-

i

body seemed perfectly satisfied. Eventually a change was made, and the railway was placed under the control of a Board of Management, Mr. Pottinger being one of the members of that board; and after the change of Government the board was dissolved, and Mr. Gutelius was appointed manager at a salary of $20,000 a year. I do not know whether the report is true that his salary has been increased to $25,000, but I do know that he was paid $20,000 a year after his appointment. I know also that he has brought to the Intercolonial railway a very large number of high-salaried officials from other railways. Under those conditions, it seems to me that the people of the Maritime Provinces have some reason to find fault, or, at least, to bring to the attention of the Minister of Railways the condition of affairs in regard to the operation of the Intercolonial railway. I do not propose to take up the time of the committee in discussing the question of whether the appointment of Mr. Gutelius was made in consideration of the services which he rendered to this Government in connection with the investigation of the Transcotinental railway, but I desire to draw the attention of the minister, and particularly the attention of the members from the Maritime Provinces to the fact, which is without question, that the present manager of the Intercolonial railways has adopted a policy of 'bringing from other railways men with whom, I suppose, he had been associated for some years in the operation of other railways, and placing them in responsible positions on the Intercolonial railway.

I maintain-and I want to put it in the strongest manner possible-that these positions should go to those who are trained on the Intercolonial railway and who are just as capable, just as willing and would make just as good a record for the Intercolonial as importations brought from the outside *by the present manager. I do not propose to take up the time of the committee in discussing the Transcontinental railway as that matter will come up upon another vote. My hqn- friend claims, that the traffic on the Intercolonial last winter was very heavy and that is put forward as an excuse for the failure of the Intercolonial to carry the freight which was offered to it at Montreal and other points. The principal reason for this failure to handle the traffic, it seems to me, was due to the fact that upon undertaking the operation of the Transcontinental railway from Moncton west, the minister took the rolling

stock and equipment from the Intercolonial and placed it upon the Transcontinental railway thus sacrificing the interests of the people of the Maritime Provinces. The freight that should have gone over the Intercolonial day after day and week after week was held up for weeks and months- I know that it was held up for over a month at least-and business men, manufacturers and people generally in the Maritime Provinces were unable to get their shipments of merchandise and other articles through to the great detriment of the business interests of the Maritime Provinces. While the department were serving the people in the western section .of the country, the people of the Maritime Provinces were suffering because this rolling stock was being used for the purposes of the Transcontinental railway. I desire to show the conditions that existed in the Maritime Provinces as a result of freight being held up at different points. I have in my hand a letter written by a very prominent manufacturer in Amherst. He is not a political friend of mine, but I know him very well and I know my hon. friend from Cumberland (Mr. Rhodes) would realize that a letter from him would mean a great deal and should have consideration. I do not propose to read the whole or it, but the writer says:

The following letter by Mr. William Knight in regard to the continual bungling and inefficiency which is characterizing the management of the Canadian Government railways appeared in a recent issue of the Moncton Transcript. It will be of special interest in Amherst not only because Mr. Knight is a prominent citizen of the town but also because he points out some of the harm which is being done Amherst industries and people by the bungling. The letter is as follows:

We hear a great deal these days about loyalty to the Empire as well as to Canadian institutions. ' This condition is very laudable. In fact, any other stand by the individual is quite inexcusable. But I have been wondering why this spirit of loyalty does not equally apply as well to Canadian Government railways and their management. ,

It is understood that munitions and allied freight have the right of way, which, of course, is quite correct. But is no attention to be paid to commercial freight at all? Is no effort to be made to relieve the apparent congestion? Or are Canadian industries to be allowed to go to the dogs?

The Amherst Foundry Company is now closed down for lack of coke supply. A car of coke for this industry crossed the line into Canada on February 16th. Since that date nothing has been heard from it. I have tried every conceivable means to get information as to where this car has been side-tracked and why, and when we may expect to receive it in Amherst, but no information is forthcoming. Evidently

the railway management does not consider Canadian industries worth its notice, let alone the ordinary courteous treatment due to a business inquiry. Other industries are in somewhat the same condition, I understand, through similar causes.

That is a portion of a letter written by a gentleman in Amherst, and making complaint as to the condition of affairs on the Intercolonial railway because freight was being held up. The acting minister may make the same answer that he gave to the hon. member for Northumberland (Mr. Loggie), and say that it was a hard winter. But this appeared on February 16, and at that time the weather conditions were not unfavourable to getting freight through. But when you come to realize that seventy-five engines were taken off the Intercolonial railway and placed upon the Transcontinental you will readily understand why freight became congested and was held up at junction points along the line of the Intercolonial. What was true in Amherst was true in Moncton. I was in Moncton during the Easter holidays, and I was talking to a very prominent business man there, a builder and contractor, who told me that his business was entirely held up because some lumber that he was bringing from British Columbia was delayed at Montreal. He had to discharge his hands, and the work was shut down waiting for this freight to be brought forward. These are matters that should occupy the attention of the Acting Minister of Railways and the Government in the interest of that portion of the country which is served1 by the Intercolonial. I do not know whether the same complaints have come to other hon. members of this House; I have not only had personal complaints, but I have had numbers of letters, and I have seen complaints in the newspapers published in that portion of the country in regard to this matter. I contend, as a representative from the Maritime Provinces, that the Intercolonial to-day, as it has been ever since the present general manager has had charge of it, is rum more in the interest of the Canadian Pacific than in the interest of the Government or people of Canada, or the patrons of the road. They have changed the methods and management of the road to conform to the system of operation of the Canadian Pacific. They have adopted the standard rules, as the Canadian Pacific have, and they have changed the system in dining car service, as was sworn to before a committee of this House of which I have the honour to be a

.

member. The superintendent of the dining car service, when put on the stand recently, stated that they had changed the system of the dining car service so that it would be conducted in the same way that other railways conducted their dining car service. What is true of that is true of nearly everything in connection with the road. They have increased the freight rates to compare with those of the Canadian Pacific. The Intercolonial railway was built particularly in the interests of the people of the Maritime Provinces at the time of Confederation. When I say that I do not mean to argue that freight should be carried free. The Intercolonial should be operated so as to maintain, as nearly as possible, an equilibrium between expenditure and revenue. I believe, and so do a great majority of the people in the Maritime Provinces, that at the present time the Intercolonial is being operated just to suit the convenience of the Canadian Pacific railwav. and practically at their dictation.

Another matter to which I wish to refer is the wages paid to the ordinary labourer on the Government railway system. Speaking on this point in the House the other day, the hon. member for Queens and Shelburne said i [DOT]

Mr. . F. B. McCurdy (Shelburne and Queens) : Drew attention of the Minister of

Railways to a matter affecting a large number of employees on the Intercolonial railway. I understand that the scale of pay allowed to trackmen, ash-pit men, and that class of labour, has been $1.60 per day. In these days of much travel, when the railway is busy, and also in view of the conditions which prevail in the outside labour market, I would ask the Acting Minister of Railways If he cannot see his way clear to make a revision upward of that scale of pay?

Hon. J. D. Reid (Acting Minister of Railways) ; With reference to the question of labour on the Intercolonial and rates of pay, I may say that this matter was taken up by the Minister of Railways and Canals with the general manager as far back as February last, and my information is that last month the wages of trackmen were increased to $1.75 a day, on country sections, and to $1.85 a day in cities. It has also been decided, commencing on the 1st of April last, to pay the coal shovel! lers, ash-pit men, etc., referred to by my hon. friend, at the rate of $1.70 per day. These advances have been made voluntarily by the minister and the general manager.

I suppose the minister thought that he was acting very magnanimously when he increased the wages of the ashpit men and common labourers from $1.60 to $1.70 a day, and the men on the country sections from $1.60 to $1.75 and the men in the city sections from $1.60 to $1.85 a day ! Let us see whether this is a

fair rate of wages to be paid to the ordinary labourer in this country.

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CON

Hugh Boulton Morphy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MORPHY:

The hon. member quoted the minister as saying that a voluntary increase had been made in the men's wages. Have any requests come from the men themselves for an increase of pay?

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LIB

Arthur Bliss Copp

Liberal

Mr. COPP:

I could not say whether there has been any special request, but we all know there have been any number of requests through their unions.

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CON

Hugh Boulton Morphy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MORPHY:

I understood this increase was a voluntary one on the part of the minister.

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LIB

Arthur Bliss Copp

Liberal

Mr. COPP:

I was reading from the minister's speech. I am not one to find fault with the salaries that are paid Government officials, unless they are very very extravagant, such as the salary paid to the General Manager of the Intercolonial and some of his officers-$12,000 for instance, to one man, and $10,000 to another. I am not going to find fault with the salaries that are paid the men in the offices at Moncton. But I do wish to draw the attention of the Government to the wage the ordinary labourer on the Intercolonial railway is being paid. I maintain that he is not being paid a wage sufficient to enable him and his family to live decently and honestly in the city of Moncton or any other city in the Maritime Provinces. It is all very well to say that the man on the farm gets only $1.50 or $1.75 a day, but it must be remembered that the great majority of that class of labour own a small house, and have a few acres of land, a cow, and a few hens. They raise some of their own meat, and with all these advantages can live decently on that wage. But a man with a family, living in the city of Moncton, or any other city, who has to pay rent and taxes, educate his family, and meet the hundred and one demands that are made, upon him, will any hon. gentleman say that a man can do this on $1.75 a day? I have read some parts of the report made by the Cost of Living Commission, laid upon the table of the House early in the session. Among other interesting things in that report, which was made by a commission appointed by this Government, I find a table compiled, no doubt, from evidence adduced before the commission, which gives the average cost of living for a period of five years. The commission estimated i that in the year 1913 it would cost a man $9.63 a week to keep himself and a family of five; that is, I suppose,

living like an ordinary, decent man should live. .

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CON
LIB

Arthur Bliss Copp

Liberal

Mr. COPP:

I just copied out the details, but I can let my hon. friend know to-morrow. According to this table it will cost a man with a family of five a little over $500 a year to live. Now, if the [DOT] $1.70 per day man, whose wages the minister has so magnanimously raised from $1.60 to$1.70, works 300 days a year- if he works every working day in the year, he can only earn $530. The $500 that the commission estimates it would cost him to keep himself and his family does not allow one cent for rent, for clothing, for education, for church and charitable purposes, or for medical attendance and things of that kind. He earns, then, $530 at the outside, and his bare living expenses, according to this table, amount to a little over $500. I have no doubt there may be some errors here and there; I do not know the gentleman who made up the statement, but if it is worth anything, it must mean that this man is going to be some two or three or four hundred dollars behind at the end of the year if he lives as an ordinary, decent, intelligent man should live. Under those conditions, if the minister is not in a position to do so himself, he should have someone work out a reasonable table and evolve a minimum wage for the ordinary labourer which will enable him to make a decent living. In the city of Moncton the working man who goes down into the ashpit in the early morning and works there for ten hours gets $1.70 a day, whereas the general manager of the Intercolonial gets his $20,000 a year with free house rent and everything else in connection with it absolutely free. Compare the condition of that labourer's child with, the condition of Mr. Gutelius' child. I am not so unreasonable as to say that the general manager of the Intercolonial should not receive a [DOT] larger salary than the ordinary labourer who does the inferior work on that railway, but the latter should be placed in such a position that his child can go to school decently clad and mingle with the children of the other officials of the Intercolonial or other citizens. I make that claim, whether it be right or wrong, On behalf of the labouring men on the Intercolonial. As long as I have an opportunity to raise my voice in defence of the ordinary people of this country, I will say that this matter should be taken up by this Govern-

ment in order to see that a reasonably fair deal is meted out to them. I do not propose to labour that question further; I simply want to bring it to the attention of the acting Minister of Railways. If the Government cannot see their way clear to increase the wage of the common labourer, then they should cut off something from the salary of the high officials and add it to the wages of those who are receiving a mere pittance and doing the hard part of the work.

I also want to call attention to a matter which is working havoc and causing loss to the Intercolonial, that is, the policy that has been followed by the Intercolonial of withdrawing the Ocean Limited train during the winter months. My hon. friend may say that it does not pay to run the Ocean Limited from Halifax to Montreal during the winter months. I do not see how you can figure out whether the running of a certain train pays or does not pay. An engineer who understands the working of a railway and the running of trains may he able to say what it costs per mile to operate a certain train from Halifax to Montreal. Many business men, however, might make up their accounts at the end of a week or at the end of a month and find that they had not made any money, but is that any reason why they should go out of business? They should rather put more energy into their business and make the next week or month make up for what they have lost, and pay a good dividend. The Ocean Limited has been running for the past few years and is looked upon practically as a tourist train and as a great advertisement for the Maritime iProvinces. The Matapedia Valley is considered to be one of the most beautiful spots in the whole Dominion, and coming through there on the train at daylight the passengers have an opportunity of seeing that section of country that we all admire, and we feel that the operating of that train has been of great service. The Canadian Pacific and the Ocean Limited come from Halifax to Moncton as one train; at Moncton one section knowm as the Ocean Limited goes on over the Intercolonial to Montreal; the jther section known as the Canadian Pacific goes on down to St. John and then through the state of Maine and on to Montreal. Just as soon as passenger traffic commences to drop off in the winter, the Ocean Limited is taken off and the whole traffic handed over to the Canadian Pacific Railway. What is the result? We are all creatures of habit. It is as natural for us to travel always over a certain road as it is for us

to eat. If one acquires the habit of going to a certain hotel, it is the most natural thing in the world to continue going to that hotel. How then can the manager of the Intercolonial railway or the Minister of Railways, who is head of the department and who has charge of the operation of that road, expect to build up a traffic for the Ocean Limited over the Intercolonial railway, when every few months of the year that train is taken off and that traffic is handed over to the Canadian Pacific Railway? The people living along the Intercolonial are absolutely dependent upon the Maritime Express and those of us who go down to the Maritime Provinces know that it is a miracle if she is not from two to five hours late in the winter season. I think I am voicing the sentiments of every member in the Maritime Provinces when I say that when we go down there in the winter season we travel by the Canadian Pacific and pay the fare of $6 through the state of Maine rather than go by the Maritime Express, and what is true of ourselves is true of the travelling public; they will not travel by the Maritime Express unless they are compelled to and want to get up into the northern part of New Brunswick. We are advertising extensively and endeavouring to make the Intercolonial part of a great system, and when we realise that the Government have of their own volition taken over the Transcotinental railway and are going to make that a part of the Gov. ernment system, it is a sin and a shame-

I was going to say it was a disgrace-that they are operating the Intercolonial railway as a branch line, as an adjunct of the Canadian Pacific railway. I ask the minister to consider Whether or not in future that cannot be changed and a better system evolved by which the people of the Maritime Provinces will receive better treatment and will have the Ocean Limited running throughout the whole year. If they lost a little money this year, that is no reason why the train should be withdrawn and, on the plea that there is only room for one, hand over the ' whole traffic to one, that one being the Canadian Pacific.

I have spoken in no fault-finding spirit. From the newspaper reports, not only in Liberal but in Conservative journals, the hon. gentleman will find that there is a great deal of dissatisfaction. I trust that if the acting minister continues at the head of the department, I, as one member from the Maritime Provinces, extend, to him the strongest invitation to come down to the Maritime Provinces and see for himself the operation of the Intercolonial. Let him

coine and stay a few weeks. One cannot get a grasp of the management of the Intercolonial by rushing over as ministers of railways usually do. If we are to have an Ontario man for all time as Minister of Railways, he should come to the Maritime Provinces and get some insight into affairs, some knowledge of that portion of the country. Then the people who are served fey the Intercolonial may hope to have a fairer deal than they have been given under the present general manager, who has been brought from another competitive railway and put at the head of the Intercolonial, and who is operating the system to the great dissatisfaction of the people of the Maritime Provinces and in a way that I believe must redound to the discredit of the present Administration and to the minister in charge of the department.

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CON

Hugh Boulton Morphy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MORPHY:

Mr. Chairman, I have

listened with great interest to the remarks of the hon. member for Westmorland (Mr. Copp). I regret that there are only four of his colleagues on that side of the House who have thought it worth while to be present to listen to his statements. For he has made a very strong impression upon my mind. We at the other end of the country have been taught that the Government, in the Intercolonial, was a spendthrift, throwing away the people's money in useless and- extravagant works- branch lines and others. The hon. gentleman has paid to the Government, not designedly, I think, a compliment in accusing them of stinginess in dealing with this road. It is pleasant to me to be disillusioned. I myself had begun to think, from the charges which had been made, that the Government were frittering away the public money on this road. But the hon. gentleman has absolutely convinced me that such a suggestion has no foundation and that, if anything, the Government have been too stingy in running' the road and in affording the accommodation which the hon. gentleman thinks the people should have. It settles my doubts on the question when I was inclined to think the other way.

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LIB

George Perry Graham

Liberal

Mr. GRAHAM:

But I do not recall that the hon. member for North Perth (Mr Morphy) made any such charge against the Government.

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CON

Hugh Boulton Morphy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MORPHY:

I say I was in doubt, in fearful doubt. But the hon. gentleman (Mr. Copp) has dispelled my doubts. I congratulate the Government on their careful,

prudent, economical administration of the road.

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LIB

May 3, 1916