May 7, 1924

LIB

Lewis Herbert Martell

Liberal

Mr. MARTELL:

Then do not repeat

rumours.

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CON

James Arthurs

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ARTHURS:

I do wish, however, to

place on Hansard the remarks of the Minister of Finance made last year when he was introducing the budget. I quote from pages 2648 and 2649 of Hansard, 1923:

Any minister, any government, any parliament must be free to deal with these cases as they arise. But the conditions to which I refer are exceptional. Speaking broadly, it is possible to give the country a reasonable assurance of stability of tariff. Such assurances are very desirable, for no business man would care to enter upon enterprises which may be brought into peril by frequent tariff changes.

Yet we find the Minister of Agriculture to-day openly stating that he is going to keep biting away until he gets the whole structure destroyed.

The tariff as it will be when the changes proposed to-day go into effect-

I am quoting now from the Minister of Finance.

-will be a moderate tariff and probably as low as any country can afford to have under the present conditions. It will not meet the desires of those who would rigidly apply the principles of free trade. It will not meet the wish of the advocates of high protection. After all life is largely made up of com-

promises. In the realm of political affairs orderly government can be possible only where a spirit of compromise exists. Subject to the' exceptional conditions such as I have mentioned, I think the country should be content to accept the tariff as it will now stand as one as fair and reasonable as can be prepared under all the circumstances, and business men should be able to carry on the various enterprises without the fear of being soon disturbed by further changes

"Without the fear of being soon disturbed by further changes."

Stability of tariff cannot be expected while tariff rates are high. But where the rates are, for the most part, as in our tariff moderate, a reasonable measure of tariff stability should be assured. "

Those are the remarks of the Minister of Finance made last year in the course of his budget speech.

The government are claiming great credit for having reduced the sales tax. We must all remember that they are the parties

5 p.m. who were responsible for the sales tax; it is only a few months since it went into force at the rate of 6 per cent as proposed by these hon. gentlemen themselves. They have increased the number of items which are not subject to the sales tax, but I notice that they have missed many very important items which should have just as much consideration as those which have been exempted. For instance, take the case of lumber. Every farmer, every householder, almost every man in Canada, uses lumber; it is an essential to the farmer and the householder, yet we find that the taxes upon it are retained. And to make matters worse, throughout Canada we have hundreds of small saw mills, little planing mills, little factories of one kind or another, the product of which until the present year had been exempt from taxation, and while the rate has been lowered from 6 to 5 per cent, the output of these small mills is now subject to taxation.

I have no desire, Mr. Speaker, to prolong this .debate, I am satisfied that the people are well acquainted with the lack of sincerity on the part of the government. The fact is that the government are prepared to sacrifice any one, any industry, any political tradition, for the purpose of retaining power.

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LIB

Lewis Herbert Martell

Liberal

Mr. MARTELL:

May I ask my hon.

friend a question? Where does he get his evidence that the people are axvare of a lack of sincerity on the part of the government? Is it not only a statement made by my hon. friend himself to bolster up his case.

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CON

James Arthurs

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ARTHURS:

My hon. friend will have a chance to talk.

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LIB

Lewis Herbert Martell

Liberal

Mr. MARTELL:

I will talk at the right time.

The Budget-Mr. Arthurs

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CON

James Arthurs

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ARTHURS:

The whole budget this

year has been prepared for the purpose of purchasing the support of our western friends, and has, I believe, succeeded in that object. But the rest of Canada, the vast majority, must know that they pay for all this. The friends of the present tariff proposals claim that the reductions will benefit the farmers of the West to the extent of $10 each per year. If that be true, it surely will not make them rich. Tariff reductions do not usually mean lower prices; in fact, if competition in business is lessened by the lowering of duties, prices go up, not down. If factories are closed for any reason the farmer loses a market accordingly and is forced to export to other countries, generally protected against him. The greatest need of the farmer to-day is a market near home where his profit will not be taken away by transportation charges. I have heard it stated by a man who has made a study of these matters that the difference between the freight rate in 1914 and that in 1924 from the middle West provinces to Liverpool on one carload of wheat would pay the duty upon all the agricultural implements used on a farm over a period of ten years.

It has been often said by hon. members to my left that the farmer pays it all, but has to compete without protection in the world's market. Both these statements are misleading and untrue. It is quite true that the farmer pays his share of the customs duties in proportion to the amount of goods used by him, but so does the mechanic and the labourer-in fact every citizen of Canada. In most cases the amount of duty paid is in proportion to the purchasing power of the buyer which is one of the good points of a customs tariff. The only exceptions to that rule are articles which are taxed for revenue purposes only. Hon. gentlemen to my left, and hon. gentlemen opposite, are fond of asserting that they believe in a tariff for revenue only, but the most oppressive tariff on the poor man and the settler is the tariff for revenue only. I notice that for many years there has been a tendency on'the part of various ministers of finance to commend a tariff for revenue on the ground that it is more quickly and readily computed and easier to collect. For instance it is only a few years since we first had a duty upon sugar. But since then we have had duties imposed upon tea, coffee, and other articles that constitute a direct tax upon the people.

I want to point out in answer to some remarks made by the Minister of Agriculture that the farmers of Canada at the present time are enjoying a very considerable mea-118

sure of protection. I have here some returns brought down by the government which show the amount of duty collected upon various articles imported. For instance there is a duty of approximately 19 or 20 per cent upon frozen mutton and lamb, and the importations for the year 1922, the latest period I have, amounted to $520,669, in value, whilst the amount of duty collected was $94,024.

I also have the imports of pork for the same year. The value amounted to $4,420,440 and the duty paid was $854,114, a rate of 20 per cent. On imports of barrelled and pickled pork the rate of duty was about 21 per cent, and the duty collected $162,901. Even on eggs we find there is a duty of approximately 10 per cent, and we imported last year from the United States upwards of 8,000,000 dozen. The average for many years past has been in that vicinity. So that if we take these articles-and I am only selecting those which come into open competition with our Canadian producers-we find that our farmers do enjoy a considerable amount of protection. But I do not believe they enjoy enough, and I am willing to support any man who will give our farmers the benefit of exactly the same tariff that another country enforces against them. If the United States imposes a duty of 8 cents a dozen on eggs entering that country I believe we should impose a corresponding duty on American eggs sent to Canada. The same with butter and other commodities. If we do that we have a chance to bargain with our competitors, we have a chance of making better terms with them. In the meantime, through the medium of these duties we have a chance of helping our farmers out of the existing situation.

Now, Mr. Speaker, I do not intend to detain the House by speaking at much greater length. We have in this chamber substantially three parties at the present time. To my left we have the Progressive party whose principal object seems to be to get what they can for themselves regardless of anybody else. They say openly that they do not care what happens to any industry, that they do not believe in helping any industry which is not native to the country-that they do not want any exotics. May I point out to hon. gentlemen to my left that the largest silk producing country in the world is the United States of America, a country that does not grow any silk. The largest cotton producing country in the world, I believe, is Great Britain and yet no cotton is grown in the United Kingdom. The two countries named have built these industries up and they are just as valuable to them as any other form of industry could

The Budget-Mr. Arthurs

be-and they give employment to the people. Our Progressive friends apparently believe that all they are here for is to make certain demands for free agricultural implements, and a few other things and go home happy.

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LIB

Lewis Herbert Martell

Liberal

Mr. MARTELL:

Would the hon. gentleman give authority for his statement?

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CON

James Arthurs

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ARTHURS:

If you read Hansard you cannot get away from-that conclusion. Then there are hon. gentlemen opposite who are more or less of a mixture. They have one free trader among them, and they have several other hon. gentlemen who are absolutely in favour of free trade on everything except the article that is produced in their particular part of the country. I refer to the representatives from the coal mining districts. They comprise eight or ten men who are perfectly willing that every other industry should go to the wall provided they can only get an increased duty on coal.

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LIB

Lewis Herbert Martell

Liberal

Mr. MARTELL:

Name them; do not confine yourself to making declarations.

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CON

James Arthurs

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ARTHURS:

Then we have another class of men-

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LIB

Lewis Herbert Martell

Liberal

Mr. MARTELL:

That is only an assertion on your part.

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CON

James Arthurs

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ARTHURS:

-who are quite willing to sacrifice any industry except one. There are sixty-four gentlemen in that group.

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LIB

Lewis Herbert Martell

Liberal

Mr. MARTELL:

That is only your assumption.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
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CON

James Arthurs

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ARTHURS:

They are all in the province of Quebec and they are quite willing that any industry should suffer except the boot and shoe industry. They do not want that industry to be touched at the present time.

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LIB

George Perry Graham (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Liberal

Mr. GRAHAM:

What is the matter with the boot and shoe industry?

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CON

James Arthurs

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ARTHURS:

It is all right. As a matter of fact hon. gentlemen opposite have almost as many policies in the House as they had in the country. They are quite willing to grasp at anything that will be of advantage to them politically. On the other hand everybody knows where the official opposition stand. We advocate the same policy that we did in 1879, and we intend to adhere to it. When the people have another opportunity to express their opinion they will declare that they are in favour of a policy which will protect our industries and our workmen, a policy which will protect Canadian workers, from competition with German labour at forty

cents a day, and will at the same time protect and build up the farming industry in this country.

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LIB

William James Hammell

Liberal

Mr. W. J. HAMMELL (Muskoka):

The

Acting Minister of Finance is entitled to the thanks and appreciation of this House for his able budget. The annual financial statement was presented to us in a clear and concise manner, and reflected the undoubted business ability of the minister in charge of our financial affairs. The seat to the right of the Prime Minister, vacant as it is at present, inspires me with a feeling of sorrow for our Minister of Finance. I only hope that the Right Hon. Mr. Fielding will make a rapid and complete recovery from his present illness, and that very soon we may enjoy his presence in this chamber.

I find myself in complete accord with the tariff policy of the government, and I iam certain it is a step in the right direction. I hope that a thorough study of the tariff situation will continue, so that in another year we may have more numerous and more substantial reductions all along the line. I have sufficient faith in our Canadian manufacturers, and sufficient respect for their business abilities, to believe they are capable of competing with the producers of any nation, and that the great majority of them will receive with joy any efforts and policies directed toward alleviating the burdens of our people.

I do not intend to take up the time of the House with any dissertation on the merits of the respective measures proposed. I realize that both from this side of the House, and from members of the Progressive party, a very able and clear defence of this year's budget proposals has been made during the course of this debate and I feel sure further arguments are unnecessary. I regret, however, that there should be lack of complete accord in this regard. I would ask the hon. members who form the official opposition to consider that their policy of high tariff and complete protection from outside concurrence has been followed for more than half a century. During this long period our manufacturers do not seem to have progressed towards the goal of tariff independence which our past policy has attempted to find for them. Would it not be showing a truer spirit of Canadianism to unite in an effort to give a thorough test to this change of policy. Why can we not get together and endeavour to accomplish under this new policy the results which we have been endeavouring to bring about since the adoption of a tariff policy of protection and failed?

I would ask the attention of the House to the matter which I am about to discuss, and

The Budget-Mr. Hammett

in giving the House the assurance that I will not repeat what has already been said during this debate I add that I have reason to believe that I will find support for the policy I wish to advocate in every section of this chamber.

Mr. Speaker, great stress is continuously laid on the necessity of developing our natural resources and often we hear very able discussions on our agriculture, our mines, our forests and our fisheries. Has it ever occurred to you that one of our important natural resources, which is indeed a basic industry of this country, seldom receives attention? Yes, indeed, we too aften forget our tourist industry and the scenic beauties of our country which form that great national asset from which we draw our invisible exports and which is a source of great revenue under present conditions where it is the subject of nearly total neglect and which could produce many times the revenue now derived if only we would give that part of our foreign and internal trade some attention. In taking up the time of this House in an endeavour to portray the immense undeveloped wealth with the great possibilities of this field, I believe that I am pointing a certain way to provide more employment, a greater home market for the farmers and to increase our revenues without depleting our resources.

Twenty-five or thirty years ago anyone who possessed sufficient temerity to include the natural beauty of his country in a tabulation of the national wealth would have been regarded as a sentimentalist and likely a subject of derision.' It is true that John Ruskin, some fifty years ago, in his political economy had pointed out that exceptional beauty might be the highest value that land could possess. I doubt if hard-headed business men ever took this policy seriously until more recent years. It is true that political orators have long been accustomed to refer with a vague and impressive gesture to "our wealth of natural scenery." This was regarded as one of those high-sounding meaningless phrases which always express more or less than the truth. Yet to-day, Mr. Speaker, everywhere exceptional natural scenery is being recognized as one of the most valuable assets a nation can possess. Its conservation and delevopment is receiving ever-increasing attention in practically every civilized country in the world. The Great War forcibly brought to the fore this immense asset and even the unsightly devastation in the war zone has been and is still being exploited for its scenic value and in this case it would be difficult even to imagine that that deso-118i

lated area is possessed of beauty. On the other hand, it is only natural perhaps that it should have taken so much time for the value of natural scenic beauty to be realized. Beauty after all is a very intangible thing, as compared with those other products of nature. You cannot touch our scenic beauties. When we trade in them we deliver our merchandise through the eyes of the purchasers. Such, however, is not the case with our farm products, our timber, our mineral products and the products of our fisheries. In these cases we deliver something very tangible; articles of commerce that can be measured or weighed, and upon which supply and demand generally recognizes a price of sale. The requirements for these articles do not have to be created, they are part and parcel of our everyday existence. In the case of beauty we can only deal on the demands for pleasure and recreation, on the desire of humans to explore new fields and discover new playgrounds. This trade, though perhaps intangible as compared to our lumbering industry, has become very real and I hope .to convince lion, members that it is to our interest to hasten its development.

The importance of exceptional natural scenery from the economic point of view lies of course in the tourist traffic it is capable of attracting. The desire to travel, to see the beauties and wonders of other lands than our own is almost universal and with the improved methods of travel of the last half century, its gratification has been placed within the reach of people of even moderate means. Once a journey of some two hundred miles was a costly and tedious affair and it was even considered dangerous. Today conditions have entirely changed and we are apt to look at a journey of that length more as an outing than travel. This, of course is specially true since the advent of the motor car; travel can now be enjoyed by almost everyone, and upon this form of recreation and education increasing millions are being spent from year to year.

It is admitted generally everywhere that previous to the Great War foreign tourist travel in Europe was worth annually to the countries visited well over a billion of dollars. In France alone this revenue was placed by economists at something between $500,000,000 to $600,000,000. For Switzerland the sum of .$150,000,000 was claimed from this same source and in Italy $100,000,000. The Rhine, that great show river of Europe, was said to be worth about $100,000,000 annually to Germany as were also the numerous seaside resorts of

The Budget-Mr. Hammell

the Baltic and the North sea. It is claimed -and this is said to be a conservative estimate -that Americans alone spent in excess of $450,000,000 in one year in Europe and that their additional outlay on this continent amounted to another $300,000,000. Figures carefully compiled by hotel and transportation companies in the New England states show a revenue from tourist traffic of over $100,000,000 per year. No resources are destroyed by such a trade. The national wealth increases without depleting the national resources. Take the pine woods of Maine, for example, where revenues are estimated at over $40,000,000 per year, not a single stick of timber needs to be cut to produce this revenue. And, again, it has been proven, beyond doubt that such places as Bermuda, Florida and California are adding more to their wealth through the commerce in their climate and scenic beauties than through the products of the soil.

The war, probably was the greatest factor in making statesmen realize the immense economic value of the tourist traffic, tor the first time Europe realized the magnitude and very great importance of the revenue they lost by the cessation of this traffic. Travel is necessarily international and national in character; but, as is apparent, the greatest benefit is derived from outside travellers as they are bringing in outside wealth. In France, a full year before the end of the World War, it was publicly declared that the country must look to tourist travel as one of the easiest ways of replenishing her depleted treasury. They at once created a special department of the government known as the Tourist bureau for the purpose of developing the tourist business of France, and voted 30,-

000.000 francs for this purpose. Italy has taken official steps along the same lines as well as Switzerland, whilst in other countries official recognition has been given to the great importance of this basic industry. For such it is.

As regards our own Dominion, it is pleasing to note that probably the greatest step towards the conservation of natural scenery and beauty was taken by our federal government. I refer to the creation of national parks. Has it ever occurred to hon. members that though this was one of the last of our resources to be recognized economically, it was also the first in regard to which the great principle of public ownership was adopted.

The first serious step in this direction was in 1885 when the government set aside 10 square miles for public park purposes including Banff Hot Springs. This area was

increased to 260 square miles about two years later. During the discussion on this bill, I noted with special interest the words of Sir John A. Macdonald, speaking in this House on May 3, 1887. He foresaw with his usual shrewdness the economic value of such a park, and he stated that, in his opinion, not only would it recuperate the people, but it would recoup the treasury as well. I believe I am on safe ground when I say that this prophecy has proven true. To-day this area comprises 2.751 square miles and has the additional charge of protecting wild animal life. Gradually were added Jasper park, Kootenay national park, Waterton lakes national park and other smaller, but nevertheless beautiful and important sections, until we now have practically 10.000 square miles of National parks in Canada. And from information I have been able to gather, several areas are again being considered by the provincial governments for addition to this reserve of beauty.

Unhappily the original step of reservation was not followed by any intensive policy of development, and it was not until 1911, a few years only before the Great War, that the National Parks branch was created, as a special division of the Department of the Interior. That this step was amply justified is evidenced by the rapid development which has taken place since that date. It is a matter of common knowledge that the very active policy of this department, the development of good roads and other conveniences, the advertisement of our railways and steamship transportation companies and widespread publicity from other sources have resulted in a steady growth of travel from other countries to these parks which now bring in many millions of dollars a year. Now, Mr. Speaker, though the extent of our National parks may appear to be great, in reality they represent only less than one half of one per cent of the total area of this country, and they do not begin to represent the great areas eminently suitable for this purpose. We possess a great number of areas extremely suitable for the attraction of the tourists of other lands, and the sooner we realize the economic importance of such a trade, the sooner we shall actively develop this element of our foreign trade.

I might instance a few of the very outstanding territories, beginning in the extreme east. First, we have the well known Bras d'Or lakes of Cape Breton and the many beauty spots of the Land of Evangeline. We then have that wonderful Garden of the Gulf in Prince Edward Island. Travelling west up the St. Lawrence river, we have countless

The Budget-Mr. Hammett

quaint and historic points in the old province of Quebec, including the far famed Murray Bay, of which I hope we may hear more from the hon. member from that wonderful district. Who will deny the beauties of the Laurentides and of the Saguenay district? Coming to this city in which we legislate, we are at the entrance of that wonderful district of the Gatineau rapidly becoming known from end to end of this continent and beyond. Who will not admit the wonderful beauties of the Thousand Islands at the head of the St. Lawrence river and the attraction which they have for thousands of visitors annually. Still further west we have the Muskoka lakes district and the Georgian bay country, and the same condition is found through to our Pacific coast. There is not, in my opinion, a single province of this Dominion which does not possess some territory of outstanding beauty and interest capable of attracting tourist traffic and providing a real benefit to the entire country.

Because I am more familiar with my own district and believe it to be one of the very best from the tourist standpoint, I will devote particular attention to it and endeavour to make my point for the development of this part of our basic resources by showing what this district has already done and what it is capable of doing. The Muskoka lakes district and the Georgian bay country are really the " Playground of America" in the making.

I do not desire to tire hon. members with a mass ot statistics bearing on this important phase, but I would ask their indulgence for a few moments and that they allow me to quote a few of the most important. First it is necessary to realize the value of this industry, and I believe a fair conception of what it is now worth is possible by the following statistical comparison. Taking only those industries which are absolutely basic we get this amazing comparison. The figures are for the year 1923, and are as follows:

Agriculture and agricultural products.. .. $407,760,000

Wood and wood products 228,756.205

Tourist travel, estimated 136.000,000

Animals and animal products 135,000.000

Minerals and mineral products 123 142,653

Is it not amazing to find this item of production to which we have paid so little attention with a value higher than that of our animal and animal products or than the wealth (produced by our mines? What could we not expect from this important national resource if we were to give it the attention which it undoubtedly deserves?

In the Georgian bay we have, not a thousand islands but thirty thousand, and in

the Muskoka lakes district we have scores and scores of wonderful lakes of various sizes in that wonderful district of the Highlands of Ontario. At the present time some development has taken place and the country is fairly well supplied with navigation and railway transportation. There are also some good roads, but I say without hesitation that only a very small start has been made and the development is not at all commensurate with what is possible and with what should take place. A carefully planned development would make of this locality just what nature seems to have intended for it, the playground of America

Taking only the three districts of the Georgian bay, the Muskoka lakes and the Lake of Bays, all within the electoral district of Muskoka, we find that, taking only the principal hotels and resorts, there is already accommodation in 155 such public places for over 10,000 guests. Besides this there are a large number of cottages and many people spend their holidays under the protective shelter of tents. But this is not all; there are besides a large number of summer resorts and residences privately owned and privately occupied, and each year sees an increase in the number of these. Hundreds of these places are owned by our American friends and you may rest assured that they are our unpaid advertisers.

Let us for a few moments look at the visitors who came to these hotels. In the Royal Muskoka, alone, that wonderful summer resort, set like a sentinel in the midst of that myriad of sparkling lakes, brooks and rivers that are everywhere to be found, that district which is the holidayers' preferred haunt, the fishermen's paradise and the ideal place, if one there is. where the strength, waning from a season's labours can be recuperated with the unparalleled enjoyment of the beauties and tranquility of nature, 14,950 guests were registered, during 1923, of whom 45 per cent were from the United States. Supposing that each of these guests spent only $100 on their holiday we have for the visitors of this hotel alone a total of $1,495,000. At the Bigwin Inn, on Bigwin island in the Lake of Bays, another diamond set in a district so beautiful that it beggars description, the season of 1923 saw 1,720 guests of whom 42 per cent came from the country to the south. The total given is exclusive of 455 guests comprising four separate parties staying from two to four days.

At this point I would quote some figures taken from the register of Bigwin Inn showing the number of guests from the various prov-

The Budget-Mr. Hammell

inces of the Dominioa who stayed at the hotel in the year 1923. From Alberta there were 3, from Manitoba 1, from Ontario 923, from Nova Scotia 2, from Quebec 54 and from Saskatchewan 2. From the United States there were the following: California 3, Connecticut 4, Delaware 3, District of Columbia 5, Florida 3, Illinois 63, Indiana 15, Iowa 2, Kentucky 1, Maryland 14, Massachusetts 13, Michigan 76, Minnesota 2, Mississippi 2, Missouri 1, New Jersey 12, New York 227, North Carolina 1, Ohio 162, Oklahoma 4, Pennsylvania 99, Rhode Island 3, Virginia 2, West Virginia 2, Wisconsin 2. This makes a total of 721. Taking as a survey, that each of the 155 places referred to, with their accommodation for 10,000 guests only, filled their rooms five times each during the entire season, we have a total of 50,000 guests, which at an average expenditure of only $100 each would mean a total expenditure of $5,000,000. From a very conservative estimate of the value of the investment in that region we find that in cottages, resorts and launches the total investment in the three sections of Muskoka, Lake of Bays and Georgian bay, and Muskoka lakes, is well in excess of $20,000,000. And the investment is rapidly increasing from year to year.

On the Muskoka lakes alone we find this remarkable summary of investment, and my authority is no less a person than the manager of the Muskoka Lakes Navigation Company:

Summer cottages

Lake Joseph 175

Lake Rosseau 230

Lake Muskoka 490

Total 895

At an estimated average value of 15,000 this represents alone an investment of $4,500,000.

Resort houses

Lake Joseph

12Lake Rosseau

32Lake Muskoka

26Total

70

The estimated total investment of these resorts is conservatively placed at $2,000,000.

There are besides a fleet of 22 steamers valued at $367,000 and 390 gasoline launches estimated to be worth $1,000,000. The total investment represented is $7,867,000. In this district alone the number of visitors during 1923 is placed at over 30,000, which at the average expenditure of only $100 each would mean a total of $3,000,000.

To handle this traffic, the help engaged on steamers, in the resort houses and in the cottages would represent 3,000 at an average of $7,500 per day for wages alone. The average daily population would be about

7,000 visitors and 3,000 employees, a continuous population of 10,000 per day during the summer months. So that, at an average of $1 per day per person, you would have a total of $10,000. per day for food alone. One could go on endlessly quoting statistics of the importance, from the tourist standpoint, of this locality; and what applies in one part of our country would be more or less general to all those wonderful sections that our country possesses.

I have here a mass of statistics from different parts of the country, but at this late hour I will not attempt to read them. They are along the same line and perhaps some other hon. gentleman at a more favourable opportunity may allude to them. Just recall to mind the number of already famous places from the Pacific to the Atlantic and it is easy to realize that this Dominion can be made the playground of America, the paradise of holiday seekers. Why, the possibilities of the Muskoka district alone are practically immeasurable A careful study of population and travel distances has shown that within one day's journey to this famous region there are in the United States 43,000,000 of people who own and operate 5,200,000 automobiles.

I want to put on Hansard at this point some statistics prepared for me and published in Automotive Industries of February 21 of this year. From these figures it will be seen that Ontario has a tourist field to draw from which has a population of nearly forty million people, operating over six million motor cars:

State Total registra- tions Passenger cars Trucks Ratio to population Approxi- mate population

Illinois

Indiana 5R3 349

Michigan 730!658

New jersey

New York

Ohio 1,068,700 1,064,624

Pennsylvania V) 11)0} Ot/u

6,062,255 5,149,202 913,053 43,497,8f4

The Budget-Mr. Hammell

If only one in the hundred of the automobile owners could be enticed to spend a vacation in the Muskoka lake district and that each party consisted of three you would have a total of 156,000 people from that section of the United States alone spending at least 815,000,000. And this of course is a very conservative estimate.

Turning for a minute to the automobile traffic over our borders, we find still more amazing results. In the year 1923 the Customs department recorded entries of 1,936,598 cars. A large number of this total of cars stayed in Canada for a period of only 24 hours or less; on the other hand, more than 200,000 stayed for a period ranging from two days to one month, and some 3,000 cars stayed from one to six months. Even taking a most conservative estimate of three passengers per car, and an average expenditure- of only $20 per car, we obtain a total expenditure from this source alone of $40,000,000. And when we consider the cost of maintenance and upkeep, gasoline, oil, and so forth, for the car and the food and lodgings for the passengers, without even including the large sums spent for souvenirs, entertainments and so forth, we readily realize that -this is a most conservative total.

One need not however consider these figures large, as they are very much below the business which we have a right to expect. With our immense resources for pleasure making and the unsurpassable natural beauties which we possess, it is within our power to develop a tourist traffic which will be one of our largest assets of external trade and one which, whilst producing immense revenue, will take nothing of our wealth of natural resources. Yes, indeed, Mr. Speaker, we could develop a tourist traffic which would go far towards replenishing our treasury and bringing to us a trade which would be the source of much employment and considerable revenues to our transportation companies.

At this point let me read a paragraph from a letter dated April 23, 1924, which I have received from the Canadian National Railways. The writer says: .

During the months of June, July and August, 1923, which would be considered the tourist months, the lines of the Canadian National Railways in the United States sold approximately 250,000 tickets for Canadian points, representing a revenue to the Canadian National Railways of approximately $2,000,000.

It has been estimated that Canadians spend annually approximately $50,000,000 in seeking vacation, health and pleasure in the United States. Is it not right to believe that if our 9,000,000 of people furnish that revenue to our neighbours, we can reasonably expect

from their 110,000,000 of population at least ten times as much, or some $500,000,000?

In this connection I may quote no less an authority than Dr. P. E. Doolittle, President of the Canadian Automobile Association. In a letter addressed to me under date of April 14, 1924, he says:

I have several times made a statement on the public platform that our objective in cash value for tourist business should be $500,000,000 annually, or ten times the amount Canadians spend at winter resorts in the United States; the population being more than ten times ours would make it an even trade off for them to visit us in ten times the numbers that we visit them.

This should be our objective, and we should also endeavour to convince Canadians that there are within our borders natural beauties that are well worth a visit to see and to enjoy.

I am not asking that we should discourage visits to the United States. I realize that a great part of this traffic takes place during the winter months, when their latitude supplies such places as California and Florida with a climate which is naturally much sought for during our cold winter months. I would ask these people however, if they have not already done so, to visit our beauty spots during the summer season,-then when they again journey to the warmer climes they would be anxious indeed to become the advertisers of our wonderful playgrounds.

I repeat, Mr. Speaker, that the most profitable source of revenue, in so far as export trade is concerned, is produced by our tourist traffic, and these invisible exports should furnish a very great source of revenue. I firmly believe that our government can no longer afford to neglect this basic industry, for such it undeniably is, and should at once give it the consideration which it truly deserves.

I would point out, especially to my friends the Progressives, that great benefits to the farming industry of this country would ensue from the development of our tourist traffic. It is conservatively estimated that oneJhalf the expenditure of tourists goes for food, and that one-third of every dollar finds its way into the rural sections. Such being the case -and from a wide study of the conditions I am convinced that this estimate is very near the mark-if we developed our tourist traffic to produce even $300,000,000 per year it would add a market of $100,000,000 for our farmers. Is there any one who would deny that this large sum would be of very considerable influence and benefit towards rectifying t'he conditions of which we are complaining to-day?

I would suggest, Mr. Speaker, for the serious consideration of the government,

The Budget-Mr. Hammell

first, that a thorough study of the situation be made in order to establish a special government department, preferably in charge of a cabinet minister, for the purposes of developing our tourist trade.

There should be established active cooperation with the various provinces and with every interested organization. Advertisements should be carefully arranged so as to coincide with the advertisements carried on by transportation companies and others. Every effort should be made to see that tourists receive the best treatment possible and that they be warned against any-and there exists some, unfortunately-who charge exorbitant prices. Good roads should be developed with national aid, where they are built in those beautiful scenic places which we possess, such as for instance, the Gatineau valley in the province of Quebec, the Bras d'Or lakes in Cape Breton and the Highlands of Ontario in the region of the Georgian bay and the Muskoka lakes. Careful planning would be necessary, and I am sure that within a very short time the expenditure would be more than justified. And after all, I am convinced that one very good way of obtaining really desirable settlers in our country is to enable them to see how beautiful it is and how great are the advantages. It is also one of the very finest of methods to encourage the development of all our industries. When an investor realizes for himself the immense natural advantages which we possess it will not be long before he is looking for places where he can invest capital in the development of industries.

If I had the time, Mr. Speaker,-I wish to finish before six o'clock-I could instance some very outstanding cases in your own province where very great development has taken place, especially along power lines, simply due to the mere accident of some tourist happening t'o visit that country.

I do not wish to take up more of the time of the House with this subject, which is so important, but I truly am convinced, that the government should give this matter full and earnest consideration. I believe that approval will follow from every corner of this chamber and that it will be looked upon very favorably by all the diversified interests melted into our national life.

Suffice it to say in closing that there seems no better way to develop and settle our

country from every standpoint than to take advantage first of our natural scenic beauties and by their very attraction prove to one and all the wonderful possibilties of this great Dominion.

At six o'clock the House adjourned, without question being put, pursuant to rule.

Thursday, May 8, 1924

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   THE BUDGET
Sub-subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE ACTING MINISTER OF FINANCE
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May 7, 1924