February 20, 1923

AUDITOR GENERAL'S REPORT

LIB

William Stevens Fielding (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Hon. W. S. FIELDING (Minister of Finance) :

With the consent of the House I desire to move that the Auditor General's Report for the year 1921-1922 be referred to the standing committee on Public Accounts.

Topic:   AUDITOR GENERAL'S REPORT
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Motion agreed to. Winnipeg Unemployment


THE LATE HON. JAMES A. STEWART

LIB

Hewitt Bostock (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

I have the honour to

inform the House that I have received this day a letter from Mrs. Stewart conveying to the House her sincere thanks for the sympathy expressed in her deep sorrow.

Topic:   THE LATE HON. JAMES A. STEWART
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MEMORIAL TO THE LATE COLONEL BAKER. M.P.

LIB

William Frederic Kay

Liberal

Mr. W. F. KAY (Missisquoi) moved:

That the following members of parliament, to wit: Messrs. Ross (Kingston), Boivin, Kay and Mewbum be appointed a special committee to act with a like committee of the Senate in further considering and determining the form of the memorial to be erected in the Parliament Buildings to the late Lieut.-Col. Baker, M.P., who lost his life on the field of battle, and that a message be sent to the Senate to acquaint Their Honours accordingly.

Topic:   MEMORIAL TO THE LATE COLONEL BAKER. M.P.
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LIB

Hewitt Bostock (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

By Rule 40 this would

require two days' notice, but I suppose it is moved by unanimous consent.

Topic:   MEMORIAL TO THE LATE COLONEL BAKER. M.P.
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Motion agreed to.


SELECT STANDING COMMITTEES

CHANGE IN MEMBERSHIP

LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Liberal

Right Hon. W. L. MACKENZIE KING (Prime Minister) moved:

That the name of J. A. Clark be taken from the list of members comprising the standing committee on Mines and Minerals and that that of the Right Hon. Arthur Meighen be inserted in lieu thereof, and that the name of the Right Hon. Arthur Meighen be taken from the Banking and Commerce Committee and that of J. A. Clark be inserted in lieu thereof.

Topic:   SELECT STANDING COMMITTEES
Subtopic:   CHANGE IN MEMBERSHIP
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Motion agreed to.


COMPANIES ACT AMENDMENT


Mr. W. M. GERMAN (Welland) moved for leave to introduce Bill No. 22, to amend the Companies Act. Some lion. MEMBERS: Explain.


LIB

William Manley German

Liberal

Mr. GERMAN:

If hon. gentlemen would

take the trouble to read the bill, it would not be necessary for me to explain it. It is to amend the Mining Companies Act in order to allow mining companies to pay dividends out of capital. At first blush that would seem to be not quite a proper thing to do, but the matter has been inqvdred into and the law officers of the Crown have decided that this is quite a proper act to pass. It has been thought that companies whose property has depreciated through the taking of wealth out of the ground should be allowed under certain circumstances, which are safeguarded in this bill, to pay dividends out of capital. Prior to doing that, they must satisfy the althori-ties that they have ample assets to pay all their liabilities.

Motion agreed to and bill read the first time.

28i

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UNEMPLOYMENT IN WINNIPEG


On the Orders of the Day:


LIB

Edward James McMurray

Liberal

Mr. E. J. McMURRAY (North Winnipeg) :

I wish to make inquiry of the government concerning the unemployment situation in the city of Winnipeg. I am in receipt, as I believe also are the other representatives of Winnipeg constituencies, of a communication from the mayor of Winnipeg enclosing a letter written by him on the 15th of February to the hon. Minister of Labour (Mr. Murdock), together with a copy of a resolution passed by the city council. It purports to state that an order in council- No. 220-was passed by the government, in which the government undertook, under an arrangement made last year at the Unemployment conference, to make provision for one-third of the relief that would be granted to the city under certain circumstances and after investigation. This order in council,

I believe, dealt only with the case of ex-service men. The resolution in question, which I understand was sent to the Minister of Labour showed, that in Winnipeg at the present time the unemployment relief office is looking after 6,181 unemployed, which would mean that 1,500 would be taken care of under the assistance granted by the government. I am instructed to make inquiry of the government what attitude they purpose taking in connection with this demand for further assistance from the city of Winnipeg.

Topic:   UNEMPLOYMENT IN WINNIPEG
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LIB

James Murdock (Minister of Labour)

Liberal

Hon. JAMES MURDOCK (Minister of Labour):

Mr. Speaker, during the month of December representations came from the Prime Ministers of Manitoba and British Columbia, to ascertain what the purpose of the federal government was to be this winter relative to the conditions ol unemployment that were alleged to exist-After very careful consideration of the unemployment problem as it seemed to exist generally in Canada, it was determined by the government that it would be unnecessary-to adopt any general unemployment relief scheme such as had been in effect during the two preceding winters, and on December 22, a telegram was sent to the Prime Ministers' of Manitoba and British Columbia indicating the view of this government on the subject. From that telegram the following, which evidences the position of the government, is taken:

Information reaching the federal government does not lead to the view that any situation exists at the present time which is at all comparable to that prevailing during the two last preceding winters.

Winnipeg Unemployment

The situation, therefore, as it appears to the federal authorities, is not one which justifies action on their part in assuming at present any portion of the obligations falling customarily to the municipal and provincial authorities.

That information was conveyed to the mayors of a number of cities east and west that had also inquired what the attitude of the federal government was to be during the present winter. During the past thirty days, certain deputations waited upon the government, and representations were made indicating that in certain municipalities in Canada there was a condition of unemployment particularly affecting returned men, that the municipal and provincial authorities had taken no action to alleviate, the result being that in those municipalities relief bodies had been formed composed of returned soldier organizations, charitable organizations, and other welfare societies, with, in some cases, representatives from the municipal authorities on these bodies. It was believed that in such cases it might be advisable for the federal government to assist such organizations formed in that way. The result was that Order in Council No. 220 was passed on the recommendation of the Minister of Soldiers' Civil Re-establishment. This order provides that in the case of unemployed ex-service men requiring relief, and not being in a position to secure proper assistance from municipal or provincial authorities but obtaining aid only from the organizations to which I have just referred, the federal government would participate to the extent of paying one-third of the disbursements incurred since January 1, 1923. That, in brief, is the position that has been taken up to the present time, and there does not appear to be any necessity whatever for changing the general policy as applicable to the entire Dominion. I am not clear at the moment whether Winnipeg, under Order in Council No. 220, will be able to participate in any way whatsoever, or to secure any assistance from the federal government.

Topic:   UNEMPLOYMENT IN WINNIPEG
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February 20, 1923