May 1, 1925

PRIVATE BILLS FIRST READINGS


Bill No. 58, from the Senate, for the relief of Thomas Aimer Shields.-Mr. Hudson. Bill No. 59, from the Senate, for the relief of Roderick James Ellis.-Mr. Boys. Bill No. 60, from the Senate, for the relief of Florence Mann.-Mr. Sheard. Bill No. 61, from the Senate, for the relief of Samuel John. Pegs, junior-Mr. Preston. Bill No. 62, from the Senate, for the relief of Harry Hambleton.-Mr. Sheard. Bill No. 63, from the Senate, for the relief of Izzie Klinmentz otherwise known as Izzie Climans.-Mr. Jacobs. Bill No. 64, from the Senate, for the relief of John Hutchison Durnan.-Mr. Sheard. Bill No. 65, from the Senate, for the relief of Richard James Wright.-Mr. Garland (Carleton). Bill No. 66, from the Senate, for the relief of Mary Ellen Ayre.-Mr. Boys. Bill No. 67, from the Senate, for the relief of Helen Marie Pritchard.-Mjr. Garland (Carleton).


CANADA-UNITED STATES TREATY BOUNDARY DEMARCATION

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:

Resolved, by the House of Commons,-That it is expedient that Parliament do approve of the Treaty between His Majesty, in respect of the Dominion of Canada, and the United States of America, for the further demarcation of the international boundary between Canada and the United States, laid upon the table of the House on Thursday, the 26th of February, 1925, which was signed at Washington on the twenty-fourth day of February, one thousand nine hundred and twenty-five, and which was signed on behalf of His Majesty in respect of Canada by the plenipotentiary therein named, and that this House do approve of the same.

He said: Mr. Speaker, hon. members of the House will observe that following this resolution on the order paper there is a resolution asking the approval of parliament of the Convention and Protocol between His Majesty, in respect of the Dominion of Canada, and the United States of America, for regulating the level of the Lake of the Woods. It might be well were I to take advantage of the opportunity on the first of these resolutions to say a word as to the use of the word " treaty ", in the case of the one resolution, and the words " convention " and " protocol " in the *case of the other.

International agreements take on a great diversity of forms, for example: Treaty, convention, acte final, declaration, agreement, protocol, exchange of notes, and so on. Of these, the treaty and the convention are the more formal, and are used for more important matters. In British practice, treaties and conventions are made between heads of states, while agreements, may be made between governments without the issue of full powers.

As between " treaty " and " convention ", the distinction is not definite. They do not differ as regards their structure. The terms are frequently used interchangeably, but as a rule a treaty is considered a more formal document than a convention; it is always used in making peace, and it is generally used in agreements as to boundaries. The agreement of 1908, between His Britannic Majesty and the United States, as to the Canadian boundary line, was styled a "treaty", and so is the document now under consideration -Boundary Demarcation Treaty-the Lake of the Woods agreement has been styled a " convention ".

It also makes use of the word "protocol." Protocol is a term used in different senses; it may mean a preliminary agreement to be embodied in a convention or treaty later, or an agreement on certain temporary or supplemental measures to be taken to carry out the intent of the main agreement. It is in the latter sense that it is used in the Lake of the Woods agreement: The protocol here provides for engineering reports on plans, representation on a temporary damages tribunal, and so on.

Coming now to the resolution which is before the House, as is indicated it asks the approval of this House in the first instance to the treaty between His Majesty in respect of Canada and the United States of America for the further demarcation of the international boundary between Canada and the United States. A copy of this treaty was laid on the table of the House on Thursday, 26th February, 1925. The negotiation and signature of this treaty has been in accordance with the practice which was laid down at the Imperial conference of 1923, and which has been followed with respect to other recent international agreements between the United States and Canada which have been before this parliament during the last year or two. The Halibut convention, the convention for the suppression of smuggling operations along the border and the convention for the extradition of traffickers in narcotics, were other international agreements that have been

Canada-U.S. Treaty

approved by this House and by the Senate. The latter two are about to be ratified. This treaty respecting the demarcation of the international boundary was signed at Washington, as I have mentioned, on 24th February, of the present year. It was signed on behalf of His Majesty in respect of Canada by the Hon. Mr. Lapointe, Minister of Justice, who received full powers from His Majesty to sign in his name on behalf of Canada. It was signed on behalf of the United States government by Secretary Hughes. This treaty was ratified by the Senate of the United States on March 12. After its approval by both houses of this parliament ratification in the name of the king will be sought and obtained and when ratifications are exchanged the treaty will then become binding upon the two countries.

The purpose of the treaty is to readjust the boundary line between Canada and the United States in three respects, and to provide for a continuance of the commission appointed under the treaty of 1908 to mark the boundary in certain areas. With respect to the readjustment of the boundary the details, I think, can be given in a few words:

First of all, article (1) of the treaty relates to the boundary line along the Lake ofthe Woods and the northwest angle. Theboundary line from the mouth of the Pigeon river to the northwest point of the Lake of the Woods, as defined in article (5) of the treaty of 1908, intersects at five points the boundary line

from the northwest point of the Lake of the Woods to the Rocky mountains as provided in article (6) of that treaty, and leaves two small areas of two and a half acres of United States waters entirely surrounded by Canadian waters. It is proposed to make the southernmost intersection the meeting-point of the two boundary sections, instead of the northwestern point taken in the treaty of 1908, thus leaving the water area in question a part of Canadian territory. It takes certain waters that at the present time are practically surrounded by United States waters, and brings them into Canadian territory.

Article (2) of the treaty relates to the boundary line from Lake of the Woods to the Rocky mountains. This line is defined in the boundary treaty of 1908 as consisting of a series of curved lines joining adjacent monuments, each following the curvature of the forty-ninth parallel. It has been found that such a curve, though small, not exceeding four inches in the one and one-third miles between monuments, is not as practicable a

boundary as the straight line which has been adopted in all other sections of the international boundary. The treaty therefore provides for straight lines between monuments. This involves a cession of some twenty-two acres of land all told to the United States.

The third article relates to the boundary line at Passamaquoddy bay and Grand Manan channel, New Brunswick and Maine. It is found by surveys that the terminus of the line in Grand Manan channel, laid down in the treaty of 1908, is less than three miles distant from the shore lines of Grand Manan island and of the state of Maine, and leaves a small zone of waters of controvertible jurisdiction between this terminus and the high seas. It is therefore provided that this line Should be extended 2,383 metres further through the middle of Grand Manan channel to the high seas.

The second part of the treaty relates to the continuance of the work of the boundary commission to be found in article (5). The original work assigned the commission, consisting of one Canadian and one United States commissioner, in marking the boundary, is nearing completion. It is, however, desirable to provide for its continuance, in order to inspect and keep in repair or relocate the monuments and buoys and keep open the boundary vistas. The boundary line between the United States with Alaska, and Canada is 5,520 miles, and is marked by 7,734 monuments; approximately 1,070 miles are timbered areas through which a twenty-foot vista has been cut. Experience shows that boundary monuments deteriorate and vistas are closed by growth unless inspection is continued. By article (6), the provision for the continuance of the commission may be terminated by twelve months' notice, any time after six years.

As to expenditure, there would be no outlay for salaries on Canada's part, as the office of boundary commissioner has been merged with that of the Director General of Surveys, and the other staff will be provided by the Topographical or Geodetic surveys. Any outlay woud be for actual work done in the field in repairing or relocating monuments, and might run from $2,000 to $10,000 in any year.

These, Mr. Speaker, are the essential features of the treaty which the House is asked to approve. Needless to say the matter has been the subject of very careful negotiation more particularly between the Minister and officers of the Department of the Interior of Canada and the Secretary of State and offi-

Canda-U\S. Convention

cers of the corresponding department of the United States, and it brings to a final conclusion or removes finally from the arena of future possible discussion some minor points that are of real significance with respect to the international boundary and which if left unsettled might come to create confusion or discussion in the future, but which if settled in the manner here proposed cannot do other than help to further the good relations which so happily exist between the American republic and our own country.

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Motion agreed to.


LIB

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

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING moved:

That a message be sent to the Senate informing their Honours that this House has adopted the above resolution and requesting that their Honours will unite with this House in approving the above mentioned treaty, and that the clerk will carry the said message to the Senate.

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Motion agreed to.


CANADA-UNITED STATES CONVENTION LAKE OF THE WOODS AND RAINY LAKE LEVELS

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, Secretary of State for External Affairs) moved:

Resolved, by the House of Commons,-That

it is expedient that Parliament do approve of the Convention and Protocol between His Majesty, in respect of the Dominion of Canada, and the United States of America, for regulating the level of the Lake of the Woods, and of identical letters of reference submitting to the International Joint Commission certain Questions as to the regulation of the levels of Rainy Lake and other upper waters, laid upon the table of the House on Thursday, the 26th of February, 1925, which was signed at Washington on the twenty-fourth day of February, one thousand nine hundred and twenty-five, and which was signed on behalf of His Majesty in respect of Canada by the plenipotentiary therein named, and that this House do approve of the same.

He said: This convention provides a

settlement of negotiations which have been under way since 1912, when the two countries, the United States and our own referred the question of the regulation of the level and outflow from the lake of the Woods to the International Joint Commission. The commission reported in 1917; Canada accepted the recommendations in 1919; the "state of Minnesota objected; a conference was held in Ottawa in 1922; further negotiations were carried on at Washington in 1923, and the present convention was drafted. The Canadian government accepted it, but the United States took no action, mainly due to local Minnesota opposition, until February, 1925, when the Secretary of State stated that this government was prepared to accept.

This treaty was ratified by the United States Senate, March 14, of the present year.

The purpose of the convention is to raise the level of the lake of the Woods and maintain it at as uniform a level as possible, mainly in order to increase the power development on the Winnipeg river, flowing out of the lake of the Woods. The dams and other control works, and the enlargement of the outlet from the lake, are being carried on at the instance of the Canadian government, under the recent Norman dam agreement effected by the Minister of the Interior, and to which Ontario and Manitoba have consented. It is, however, necessary to secure the consent of the United States, as these developments may involve flooding of the low lands on the south United States shores.

The convention provides, briefly:

i. For the establishment of a Canadian Lake of the Woods control board andi afeo an international board of two engineers, to regulate the level of the lake when it rises or falls below certain levels, with appeal if necessary to the International Joint Commission.

ii. Enlargement of the outlets, by the Dominion.

iii. Assumption by the United States of liability for flooding United States lands, up to certain level of lake, and for certain protective works and alterations.

iv. Agreement by Canada to pay the United States in consideration of these undertakings $275,000, and half of any additional sum expended within five years, two-thirds of these amounts to be assessed on the power companies benefited.

v. No diversion of water to any other watershed except by agreement.

Accompanying the convention is a protocol, providing:

i. Submission of Canadian outlets plans to the international board of control.

ii. Submission of United States protective works to the international board of control.

iii. Representation of Canada on tribunal to assess land damages.

iv. One member of Canadian board to be also a Canadian member of the international board.

At the same time it is proposed to refer to the International Joint Commission, by identical letters of reference, certain questions as to the possibility of regulating the levels of Rainy lake (following into lake of the Woods) and other upper waters, the cost, the proper apportionment of the cost, and the nature and extent of interests benefited by

Canda-U jS. Convention

the present developments on Rainy lake and Kettle falls.

This Mr. Speaker is a pretty complete summary of the convention and the protocol. As hon. members are well aware, this matter also has been the subject of very careful examination and consideration by Canadian ministers of the crown and by officers of the Department of the Interior and members of the administration and corresponding departments of the United States, and the government believes that in the agreement that has been reached a further advance has been made in carrying out the original purpose of the establishment of the International Joint Commission, under which the sources of possible differences between ourselves and the United States are removed by resort to reason, rather than by any thought of an appeal to force. The treaty marks one further step along the path of international peace and goodwill of which we on this continent have given so happy an example to the rest of the world.

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CON

Arthur Meighen (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Right Hon. ARTHUR MEIGHEN (Leader of the Opposition):

The previous treaty did

not appear to be of such importance as to require very prolonged consideration on the part of the House, but this treaty is of real significance. I do not now feel as familiar with the subject as I once was, but the treaty *in question is a result of a submission which was made nine or ten years ago to the International Joint Commission of certain differences which had arisen and problems that were on the horizon with respect to the lake of the Woods and adjacent territory, the inlet and the outlet. Canada's case was very thoroughly presented before that tribunal, as was the American case, and a finding was made in which the Canadian commissioners concurred and the American commissioners as well. But a very strange incident occurred with the American commissioners. While concurring, all or some of them submitted as well a sort of subsidiary report, and the concurrence with the majority or the unanimous report was subject to whatever results might flow from the submission of these subsidiary recommendations. Anyway, the consequence was that the United States did not approve of the finding of the international board, and thus there has been a delay extending over all these years. What I would like to be clear on, first of all, is as to what concessions have been made, if any, to the United States, in order to induce them to concur in the treaty. That is to say, what is there embodied in this treaty that is in the nature of a concession, a change

from the original terms of the finding of the international board. In view also of the rather involved character of the arrangement now come to, embodied in this convention and in the protocol which subjoins it, it does seem to me the House owes it to the importance of the subject to go into committee of the Whole, so that we can get more detailed information. Possibly it would be better-although on this I do not insist-to go into committee of the Whole at another date, when such information as we can get now can be studied with the treaty itself, and we prpbably can make more rapid progress. The consequences of the treaty are very great, or rather the importance of hon. members understanding its terms is quite considerable. The great power interests which depend on the outflow of the lake of the Woods will in future rest their lights on the terms of the treaty and, as well, on its fairness will depend in considerable degree the presence or absence of friction between the two countries in years to come.

Topic:   CANADA-UNITED STATES CONVENTION LAKE OF THE WOODS AND RAINY LAKE LEVELS
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LIB

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

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

The request,

or the suggestion rather, my right hon. friend has made, that the House go into committee of the Whole on this resolution will require the unanimous consent of the House, if we are to conform to the rules covering the consideration of the resolution as it appears on the order paper. I may say, speaking for the government, we have no objection whatever to adopting the course mv right hon. friend has proposed. Indeed, I think it is a wise suggestion, and has much to commend it, and I shall be very happy if the House will agree to permit the resolution to be considered in committee of the Whole. If unanimous consent is given we can so arrange. I understand, if we adopt the suggestion, another resolution will have to be drawn.

Topic:   CANADA-UNITED STATES CONVENTION LAKE OF THE WOODS AND RAINY LAKE LEVELS
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LIB

Hewitt Bostock (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

It can only be done by

unanimous consent. Is it the wish of the House that the Prime Minister shall have leave to withdraw the present resolution?

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Motion agreed to.


LIB

Hewitt Bostock (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

Is it the pleasure of the

House that this resolution be taken up on Monday next?

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Motion agreed to.


OLD AGE PENSIONS

LIB

James Murdock (Minister of Labour)

Liberal

Hon. JAMES MURDOCK (Minister of Labour) moved:

That it is expedient that the final report of the special committee of the House of Commons which was ap-

Old Age Pensions

pointed at the last session to make an inquiry into an old age pension system for Canada, be referred to a special committee of the House for examination and report with reference to the correspondence which has occurred since last session with the several provincial governments arising from the proposal of the special committee for co-operative action between the federal and provincial authorities on the subject of old age pensions.

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CON

Henry Herbert Stevens

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. H. H. STEVENS (Vancouver Centre):

I am not rising at all to question the desirability of this motion. I wish, however, to ask the minister a question and to direct his attention to one or two matters. In the first place, I notice that this is a motion to refer the report made in the previous session to a special committee of this House. Is it the intention that such special committee this year shall prepare and suggest to the House legislation necessary to give effect to the substance of the report, and is it the intention of the government to bring in such legislation this year?

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LIB

James Murdock (Minister of Labour)

Liberal

Mr. MURDOCK:

That would appear to be a matter for later consideration when the report of the committee has been received. The proposal of the special committee last year, which proposal was adopted by this House, was for co-operative action between the federal government and the various provincial governments on an old age pension plan, and the federal government was to take the matter up with the provincial governments. That has been done. If my hon. friend will look at Hansard of March 2, 1925, he will find a brief outline of the answers received from the various provinces, or I can read them to him now, if he would like to have them on Hansard again.

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CON

May 1, 1925