April 9, 1918

UNI L

Frank Broadstreet Carvell (Minister of Public Works)

Unionist (Liberal)

Mr. CARVELL:

I think I realise what my hon. friends are asking for. During the last three years there has been issued a memorandum which is supplementary to the report of the Auditor General. That memorandum, as I understand it, has not been issued this year, the reason being that practically everything that heretofore appeared in the memorandum will now appear in the report of the war purchasing commission. The Minister of Militia, therefore, is not able to give that information to-night. I would suggest that perhaps we might confine our discussion tonight to Civil Government, which is the

[iMr. iMurphy._l

item under discussion, and I am sure the minister, when the matter comes up on the next occasion, will be able to give the House all the necessary information.

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L LIB

Charles Murphy

Laurier Liberal

Mr. MURPHY:

d agree with the Minister of Public Works (Mr. Carvell) that to-night the discussion, on which we have not yet entered, should be confined tp the proposed appropriation immediately before the Committee. But might I also point out that a statement of the transactions carried out by the war purchasing commission will not give the House information as to what has been paid for salaries, for instance, for salaries in connection with the board of food control or in connection with the central appeal judge's office and matters of that kind which I understand are taken out en bloc of this war appropriation? It is item's of that kind, in regard to which it has been found difficult to get information. .

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UNI L

Frank Broadstreet Carvell (Minister of Public Works)

Unionist (Liberal)

Mr. CARVELL:

That is quite true, and the House is certainly entitled to all that information. That, of course, would not appear in the report of the war purchasing commission, which would give only the actual purchases. There will however be another way of getting at it.

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L LIB

Rodolphe Lemieux

Laurier Liberal

Mr. LEIMIEUX:

The Minister of Militia will find no difficulty with his estimates, if, after discussion with his deputy minister, he gets that detailed statement for which, since the beginning of the war, we have been accustomed to ask. The affairs of the Militia Department have increased so much that the estimates which are before the House are not sufficiently explicit for hon. members. I may say to the minister that he will find no difficulty in having his estimates passed, because he has the good will of the House and has always, since the opening of the session, answered very willingly and generously the requests made to him. But to facilitate the work of the Committee, we certainly require this detailed statement, which the minister's predecessor used to distribute each time his estimates came up before the House. I agree that as regards Civil Government, this statement is not so much needed.

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Major General MEWBURN:

I can assure the hon. member that that statement will -be forthcoming. It is probably due to ignorance on my part that it has not been distributed. As to the memorandum published last- year, all purchases of the Militia Department which have been made by the war purchasing commission will be included in its report, which is in process of preparation.

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Major General MEWBURN:

We have

every day been asking the war purchasing commission to expedite it. As regards salaries and expenses paid in connection with the tribunals under the Military Service Act, no money had been paid out by the Department of Militia and Defence in connection with the operation of that Act. Except as regards any military representation who may have attended the tribunals. The whole administration and operation of that Act has been in the Department of Justice, and the Minister of Justice has had full and absolute control of its administration. So far as the Militia Department is concerned, we have had nothing to do with the Military Service Act until such period as we have been notified that the individual man has been refused exemption, and he is a soldier when he is handed over to us.

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L LIB

Jacques Bureau

Laurier Liberal

Air. BUREAU:

As the Minister of Public Works has suggested, if we are to consider anything this evening, it should be the salaries, and the only source of information is the Auditor General's Report. We have had the estimates of the other departments before us; we have not yet had the estimates of the Militia Department. I have, however, no objection to offer to that. I see a note I took the other night while we were putting through the estimates of the Department of Agriculture and the Department of the Naval Service. At that time a remark was addressed to the Minister of Militia by his predecessor. I am rather afraid to embarrass somebody else by keeping the promise I made to the ex-Minister of Militia that night. The note asks this question: Why should not the Deputy Minister of Militia receive the same salary as the Deputy Minister of Agriculture or the Deputy Minister of Naval Service?

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L LIB
L LIB

Jacques Bureau

Laurier Liberal

Mr. BUREAU:

The Deputy Minister of Justice receives eight or nine thousand dollars.

Mr. LEMIEL'X: More than that.

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L LIB

Jacques Bureau

Laurier Liberal

Mr. BUREAU:

I do not want to make any remarks as I know I should embarrass the Deputy Minister of Militia who is present to-night, but I want to make a reservation for myself and ask the Minister of Militia's permission to come back on the subject later on, although we may not be discussing the question of salaries, so that

I may keep the promise I made to the former Minister of Militia and also follow the dictates of my heart. I want to impress upon the Minister of Militia that this is a true demand we are making. I know nothing about the operation of the Department of Militia, but I am told that the Deputy Minister of Militia is also vicepresident, or occupies a prominent position in the Militia Council, and I have been informed that this Militia Council holds meetings, if not daily, two or three times a week, and that it involves extra work. If I speak now, it is just to get a reservation and to ask the minister's permission to come back to this subject, as I have something else to add, and I am in a very peculiar position, having to make the statement before the deputy minister himself.

Major-General MEWBURN: Of course, the hon. member is free to ask any questions and I shall endeavour to answer them, but if he does not wish to ask them to-night, he will have another opportunity. What was

the question he wished to ask?

/

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Jacques Bureau

Laurier Liberal

Mr. BUREAU:

I wish to make a plea in favour of an increase in salary to the deputy minister! The Deputy Minister of Immigration receives a salary of $6,000; the Deputy Minister of Naval Service receives a salary of $6,000; the Deputy Minister of Justice receives a salary of $10,000, and I understand that the largest and heaviest burden of administration in civil government falls upon the shoulders of the Minister of Militia and his deputy.

Major-General MEWBURN: As regards

salaries of deputy ministers, I do not hesitate to say that in the short time I have been administering the Militia Department and, from the knowledge I have of some of the other departments, I think the deputy ministers are (very much underpaid for their services. I am a great believer in trying to get efficiency from a business standpoint, and I know that in private concerns you could not get a man for twenty or twenty-five thousand dollars a year to assume the same responsibilities and carry out the same work that are put upon the shoulders of deputy ministers. From my personal knowledge since I have been in the Militia Department and from my intimate connection with it for years past, I know that not only the deputy minister but some of the other officials have not worked by the clock but have worked until all hours of the night in order to cope with the burdens laid upon their shoulders.

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Jacques Bureau

Laurier Liberal

Mr. BUREAU:

I may take that as an

intimation that my Tequest will be granted without any further remarks on my part?

Major-General MEWBURN: I certainly

will be pleased to concur in that, if I can get it done.

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Charles Murphy

Laurier Liberal

Mr. MURPHY:

Will the minister explain the increase in the salaries of these two officials. One of them is apparently in the first division.

Major-General MEWBURN: Yes, in subdivision A of the first division. There are three statutory increases of $100 each. Mr. Brown has gone up as chief accountant, and the other is Mr. Lewis, who appears here as assistant secretary of the militia council, with a salary of $2,600. He was formerly in subdivision B of the first division at the same salary.

Contingencies-Sundries, $ 11,000.

Mr. MoMASTER: What does this item include?

Major-General MEWBURN: Telegraph

and telephone communications from different parts, cablegrams, etc. I have not the details here, but I can get them for my hon. friend if he desires.

Progress reported.

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PUBLIC WORKS ACT AMENDMENT.


On motion of Hon. F. B. Carvell (Minister of Public Works), Bill No. 40, to amend the Public Works Act, was read the second time.


NAVIGABLE WATERS PROTECTION ACT.


Hon. F. B. Carvell (Minister of Public Works) moved the second reading of Bill No. 41, to amend Navigable Waters Protection Act. He said: I had intended to ask for the second reading of this Bill, but if my hon. friends think it is time to adjourn I will not press it.


L LIB

Jacques Bureau

Laurier Liberal

Mr. BUREAU:

We do not object to giving the Bill its second reading provided it is distinctly understood that if we object to the principle of the Bill, we can discuss the principle in Committee.

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UNI L

Frank Broadstreet Carvell (Minister of Public Works)

Unionist (Liberal)

Mr. CARVELL:

The hon. member can

discuss anything in Committee. I could not keep him from discussing it if I wanted to.

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April 9, 1918