June 26, 1925

LIB

Charles A. Stewart (Minister of Mines; Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. STEWART (Argenteuil):

There is no doubt that so far as the legality of the scheme is concerned you could say to the licensees: Keep your timber. But you 'have stepped in and deprived them of the privilege of logging, made it very expensive, and the logical thing to do was to exchange that timber for timber of equal value, just as we are doing at Banff national park to-day, because we do not want the licensee to cut the timber and destroy the scenic value of the park. I am trying to substitute for that timber other timber of equal value. But in this particular case we did not seem to be able to come to an agreement about it. Always there was a difference of opinion as to the value. My hon. friend is keeping away from the question of the value of [DOT] the berths altogether.

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PRO
LIB

Charles A. Stewart (Minister of Mines; Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. STEWART (Argenteuil):

Upon the

estimates of trained cruisers.

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PRO
LIB

Charles A. Stewart (Minister of Mines; Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. STEWART (Argenteuil):

Yes, and

on behalf of the licensees.

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CON

Henry Lumley Drayton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir HENRY DRAYTON:

The chairman

has called my attention to a la/ter report to council by Sir James Lougheed. There was no action taken by council except that the matter was referred to the Department of Justice. This will show the view of Sir James Lougheed:

The city of New Westminster takes its water supply from Coquitlam lake, and the Vancouver Power Company have constructed a power dam on Coquitlam river at the outlet of the lake, using the lake as a reservoir. With a view to preserving the waters of the lake from contamination and to regulate the supply for both the city and the power company, an order in council was passed in 1920 establishing the Coquitlam Conservation reserve, which covered the watershed of the lake; and in this connection an agreement was entered into in 1913 between the city of New Westminster, the Power Company and the Crown. Through an inadvertence, the northern portion of timber berth No. 507, comprising approximately 4.256 acres, was included in this reserve, and Messrs. Hall and Irwin now make application to be granted other timber in lieu of that contained in their berth, and advance the following in support of their application;

My hon. friend will find on the file, in the first instance, a legal opinion that the original order in council of 1910 did not control the situation, and in the second instance, that in so far as the city was concerned, the regulations which were then drawn as to the manner in which logging operations were to be carried on would enable logging to be done without any danger to the city's water supply. The report goes on:

That they were advised by the mayor of NewWestminster that if any attempt were made to remove timber from their berth into Coquitlam lake, he

would apply for an injunction restraining them from doing so:

That the mayor took the ground that the cityhad the right to preserve the purity of the water of

the lake, and had also the right to preserve the timber upon the lands within the reserve:

That the Vancouver Power Company had erected a dam across the Coquitlam river, at the outlet of the lake, without a sluiceway for the passage of logs, and had diverted some of the waters from the Coquitlam river, thus preventing them from bringing their logs down the river:

With a view to removing the possibility of litigation arising among the parties interested, as a result of a portion of berth No. 507 having been included in the conservation reserve, the undersigned recommends that the licensees of berth No 507 be allowed to select, in lieu thereof, other available timber on Dominion lands of equal value.

I see that the action that was taken by the Privy Council was to refer the report back to Sir James Lougheed on November 24, 1920, and in April, 1921, it was referred to the Department of Justice. I am not going to detain the committee any further, Mr. Chairman.

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?

An hon. MEMBER:

Hear, hear.

Supply-Interior

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CON

Henry Lumley Drayton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir HENRY DRAYTON:

I am so glad to be able in some way to please the hon. member. It makes me feel quite happy now, so much so that I am tempted to go on and stop again just for the purpose of pleasing him when I stop. We will have another start and another stop and some more pleasure for my hon. friend.

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CON

George Gordon

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GORDON:

I do not want to compel

the stop -that my hon. friend mentions, but I might point out that before Sir James Lougheed made his report, cruisers were sent out to examine this berth. The members of the syndicate also had their cruisers go to British Columbia, and in the report of Sir James Lougheed it is mentioned that they took several months. Finally he came to the conclusion that this berth should be exchanged for timber of equal value. The city of New Westminster was threatening litigation. As a matter of fact, on the Coquitlam river logging operations have been carried on for a great many years, vast quantities of logs having gone down the river. Whether the timber on this berth was available for ready cutting and placing in the river, I do not know, but at all events the timber was of some value to the persons who bought this berth, and Sir James Lougheed, appreciating the value of the Coquitlam river for the purpose of floating the timber on that side of the *berth adjacent to it had this inquiry made. As will be seen by the report, he appreciated the fact, too, that this reserve having been created' and an agreement having been entered into with the city of New Westminster which prevented the licensee from cutting this timber, the Department of the Interior was unable to deliver the property which it had agreed to sell to these licensees; that is, they were unable to give the right to cut on this berth.

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CON

Henry Lumley Drayton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir HENRY DRAYTON:

I am going to

give the file to my hon. friend and ask him to read what he is saying from the file.

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CON

George Gordon

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GORDON:

As a result. Sir James

Lougheed came to the conclusion that they . had a good case; otherwise he would never have recommended that they be given in lieu of this berth timber of equal value.

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CON

Henry Lumley Drayton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir HENRY DRAYTON:

Let the hon

member read it.

Mr. 'GORDON: I do not need to read it.

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CON
CON

George Gordon

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GORDON:

The inference is a fair

one. It was drawn to the attention of the

minister of that day that the city of New Westminster was threatening proceedings against any persons who might attempt to interfere with their power rights and he 'had an enquiry made by the officials of his department; and the conclusion he reached was that the licensees should be given timber of equal value because in his opinion they had a good claim. During his tenure of office it was impossible for his officials to come to any agreement with the licensee for another berth and for three or four years cruising took place every summer on other berths. On two occasions at least the suggestion was made that the licensees should accept other limits but no agreement was reached between the department and themselves. They wanted more than the department was prepared to give them and the result has been that these men have allowed, not the $126,000 which they paid, with interest and so forth, but $120,000. This means a net loss to half a dozen in the syndicate of some $22,800.

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CON

Henry Lumley Drayton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir HENRY DRAYTON:

I asked the hon. gentleman to read from the memorandum but he would not do so for the simple reason that he knew it was useless. He afterwards said that he was drawing a deduction. Well, we can all draw deductions.

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CON

George Gordon

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GORDON:

I said that it was the

deduction that Sir James Lougheed drew.

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CON

Henry Lumley Drayton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir HENRY DRAYTON:

The situation

really was this: Sir James Lougheed saw the danger of litigation and he made the suggestion that timber should be exchanged. That is all there is to the Lougheed recommendation.

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CON

George Gordon

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GORDON:

Sir James Lougheed recognized that the licensees had a good claim in law. Their position was that if the power company attempted to interfere with their rights by flooding the land back of berth 507 they would apply for an injunction to prevent the operation of the dam. And the city of New Westminster itself was threatening proceedings if the company attempted logging operations contrary to the regulations. So that the whole question was in a state of threatened litigation and when the matter was drawn by the city of New Westminster to the attention of Sir James Lougheed he adjusted the difficulty, or rather attempted to adjust it, in the comprehensive report he submitted. But the fact is that he recognized that there was a claim strong enough to warrant him in recommending to council that an equal value of timber should be given to the licensees.

Supply-Interior

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PRO

George Arthur Brethen

Progressive

Mr. BRETHEN:

I understood the minister to say that this money is given to reimburse the licensees for expenditures made on the property.

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LIB

Charles A. Stewart (Minister of Mines; Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. STEWART (Argenteuil):

Not altogether. There have been expenditures in connection with the surveys on berths proposed for exchange. These disbursements amounted to some $22,000 and interest was allowed only on actual investment in the berth in the way of fire dues and ordinary timber charges.

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June 26, 1925