The present situation is not changed at all by this bill. Then came requests from the province of Saskatchewan and the province of Ontario, and some from the province of Nova Scotia on certain other lines, which would have so overwhelmed the first bill with changes that I thought it better to withdraw it, and introduce a new one covering the requests made by the different provinces.
I thought I had made it plain. So far as British Columbia is concerned, it is to prevent the importation of liquor into the province except through the local government, which has control of the matter now.
In Quebec the business is handled by a commission appointed by the local government, and not by the local government itself. This will bring the commission under the law, as well as the government of British Columbia. As far as Ontario and Nova Scotia are concerned, it is requested that certain sections of the Doherty Act, sections 4, 5 and 6, if I remember rightly, shall be made a part of Part IV of the Canada Temperance Act. That is the act upon which New Brunswick, Ontario and Nova Scotia took a vote some time ago. There are certain sections of the Doherty Act which the temperance people of these provinces think should be made a part of Part IV of the Canada Temperance Act, and this the bill proposes to do.
There is very little -new legislation. It is only transferring legislation from one place to another, made necessary through the provinces having adopted these different acts.
I had some conversation with the Minister of Agriculture this morning concerning this matter, and I have looked into it a little further during the day. I find there are a number of hon. members who are interested in this question of the reduction of compensation, and I would ask the minister to be good enough to let the bill stand over until about Wednesday, when the budget debate will be over.
The committee will remember that when this bill was up before, almost everyone who spoke agreed as to the compensation allocated for pure bred cattle. The sum of $150 was thought by some hon. members to be too small, it being a reduction of $100 from the old indemnity, but as a matter of fact, in getting out this>
new schedule of indemnities we have felt that the reductions made are not as large as the reductions that have taken place in the commercial value of animals. Consequently, the indemnity is really just as high as in the former schedule. Giving high indemnities is very nice, of course, if you have lots of money, and we would like to give high indemnities for the sake of the man who has had his animals slaughtered. It is a tremendous loss to a man to have his whole herd slaughtered, as sometimes happens, but our first consideration is the public safety and to get as much value as possible for the money expended in the way of eradicating tuberculosis. In actual practice it does not help to eradicate the disease to give indemnities bordering on the value of the animal. If the indemnity is too low, the owner is not tempted to get his cattle tested at all, and if it is too high, he is apt to be careless on the
ground that the indemnity will be so high and generous, plus the salvage of the animal, that not much loss will be incurred, and there is a predisposition to carelessness on his part. So we have reduced the indemnity to correspond with the reduction in the value of the animals as compared with two years ago. I shall be very glad to hear from the committee, not from the angle of buying these cattle, because we are not buying them, but from the point of view of indemnifying the owner for the loss he has sustained, and helping him to start over again with government assistance. To that extent, also, we are protecting the public from the further spread of this disease. I firmly believe that when an indemnity is too high it actually encourages the dissemination of the disease, and that is not what any of us want.