-so far as I am concerned, by a member of the Opposition. I use the word "unfortunately" advisedly in this connection, because it is an undisputed fact that under existing conditions it is impossible for a member of the Opposition to obtain any consideration whatever for his constituency, no matter how pressing the need may be.
Mr. MACKIE (North Renfrew) :
I think it is due to the minister as well as to myself to reply to my hon. friend's statement. He did me the courtesy to tell me last night that he was going to refer to this. The crux of the whole matter was reached in the last few words of his speech -he is peeved that North Renfrew has some public works that South Renfrew has not. The Pembroke dock was built of lumber seventeen years ago, and well built, by the Laurier Administration. With very little repair work we have succeeded in holding it fit for traffic, but to-day it is a risky proposition to cross it and go out to the landing pier. There is a sign to-day on the dock, placed there by the department, reading as follows: "This dock is dangerous1. Parties using it do so at their own risk." A short time ago another communication was received by the wharfinger instructing him that proceedings were about to be taken to close this wharf. It serves the island of Calumet and the mainland of Pontiac county in Quebec, and the weekly traffic on the ferry alone is 1,400 passefigers. But for that service eight to ten thousand people would be shut off from their market at Pembroke. We have also the liner running daily to Des Joachim; it accommodates yearly over 10,000 passengers. The work which at present is being done to the dock is the refacing of it; every foot of this lumber will be used in the reconstruction that will be carried on this winter. The only cost will be the time of the workmen and the snikes that will be used. It is an interprovincial oneration and as such is of more benefit to the residents of Pontiac than to the merchants of Pembroke.
Will my hon. friend say what kind of business is carried on on Alumette island?
Mr. MACKIE (Renfrew) :
I suggest that the hon. gentleman study his geography so that he may know the difference between Alumette island and the island called Calumet, 40 or 50 miles further off.
Well, it makes no difference; the question applies just the same.
Mr. MACKIE (Renfrew) :
Undoubtedly my hon. friend's constituents find Portage du Fort as conveniently situated in respect to Renfrew as Desjardinsville is to Pembroke. The hon. gentleman refers, I may say, to the liquor traffic. The Petawawa wharf was constructed by Mr. Moffatt and it proved to be of faulty design; the large river drives could not pass under it and very extensive alterations had to be made. In the provision for reconstruction this also will be included. The traffic on this wharf is very considerable, but to-day there is a fence across it which prevents the passing of any traffic. A good deal has been said about the post office clock, and I would like to make a brief reference to it while I am on this subject. We had a splendid clock suspended from our post office building, but in 1914 and 1915 it was frequently so heavily laden with recruiting signs that finally it tumbled down. The department offered to replace it at once but I asked them not to replace it until peace was declared. In due course the matter was taken up and I asked the department instead of installing a suspended clock to go about $1,200 or $1,500 further
5 a.m. and give us a tower there. I wish also to make a comparison between the Arnprior wharf and the wharf in North Renfrew. The Arnprior wharf structure cost $35,000, and as the hon. member for South Renfrew knows, not a passenger boat lands at that wharf. In fact, on the lake they have only one ferry and it is miles removed from Arnprior. They have a solitary tow-boat which last year was tied up to the wharf in North Renfrew for six Saturday and Sunday nights during the season. Now, we ask for repairs to that wharf in order to restore the necessary facilities.' There are other matters which I would like to deal with, Mr. Chairman, but the hour is late so I shall not proceed further at this time.
Telegraph and telephone lines-Quebec county-telephone lines-general repairs, $3,000.
What repairs are intended to be made here?
These repair works
are recommended by the superintendent as being necessary to put the sections now operated in thoroughly good condition. He says that the sum of $2,850 will be sufficient to provide a substantial line and that it will be an advantage to have the work done at once.
The line between
Loretteville and St. Gerard needs to be completely renewed, and I hope that the minister will make the necessary provision for this work.
I would like to ask the minister if a demand has been made on behalf of the people of Isle aux Coudres for the extension of the telephone line a distance of about two miles. I have taken this matter up with the minister by correspondence and with the officials of his department and I have not received a favourable answer.
This matter is now under investigation by the officials in charge of the telegraph service, and as soon as I have their report I shall be pleased to forward it to' my hon. friend. I sincerely trust that it will be of such a character that we can extend the line in accordance with his request.
But some amount will have to be provided for in case it is decided to proceed with the work. It should not cost more than $1,000.
I wish again to impress upon the minister the necessity of seeing that this line from Loretteville to St. Gerard is repaired. This work has been requested for quite a long time but nothing has been done.
Suppose we let this
item pass in any case. We can make more progress with $3,000 than we can with nothing.
If it is intended to go ahead with the work that I have mentioned will the necessary money be available?
This is a general vote; it can be applied to any partv of the telegraph system.
I wish to mention a matter which was brought to my attention by an officer of the Archives Department, and who gave me to understand that he had seen the Minister of Public Works and that an item of $10,000 would be placed in the
Supplementary Estimates to care for the historic spots known as Fort Cumberland and Fort Moncton near the town of Amherst. I am sure that my hon. friend has a resolution from the town council of Amherst as well as other communications with regard to this matter. As my hon. friend knows, it is desirable that these places shall be preserved and cared for as historic sites. I am sure my hon. friend has visited those places which are going to destruction very rapidly. A small amount should be placed in the Estimates to have the sites, if not completely restored, at least kept in the condition that they are in now. I notice other items in the Estimate for the preservation of historic spots.
I concur most heartily in the suggestion put forward by these different bodies in the neighbourhood of these old forts and embodied in resolutions as referred to by my hon. friend. I had a conversation with the gentleman connected with the Archives Branch, and my suggestion was that the scope of the National Battlefields Commission be enlarged and that the care of those historic sites be placed under that commission. That commission reports to my colleague the Minister of Finance (Sir Henry Drayton). I am taking the question up with him, and while sufficient time has not elapsed for it to receive the consideration which it deserves, I am hopeful that he will see his way clear to provide an extension of the National Battlefields Commission Act, so that that commission can take these sites under their direction.
We have passed fifty or a hundi'ed million dollars of Estimates without very much consideration, and I would like to move that the committee rise.