April 11, 1928

CANADIAN NATIONAL RAILWAYS

ANNUAL REPORT TABLED


Hon. CHARLES A. DUNNING (Minister of Railways and Canals): I desire to lay on the table the annual report, in English and French, of the Canadian National Railway system; also a statement, in English and French, of revenues and expenses regarding the eastern lines, as defined in the Maritime Freight Rates Act of 1927, for the six months ending December 31, 1927.


DOMINION LANDS ACT AMENDMENT


Hon. CHARLES STEW7ART (Minister of the Interior) moved for leave to introduce Bill No. 199, to amend the Dominion Lands Act.


CON
LIB

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

Liberal

Mr. STEWART (Edmonton):

The purpose of this amendment is to permit the extension of the homesteading privilege to others than those mentioned in the amendment of 1925. It is to extend the privilege of granting a second homestead to those who have proven up prior to January 1, 1928. This is being done in order to meet the request of a large number of people in the prairie provinces who think that this privilege should be extended to allow farmers and their families to move into the northern portions of the district, and the father of the family to secure a second homestead.

The other amendment is a minor one with respect to school lands.

Motion agreed to and bill read the first time.

Topic:   DOMINION LANDS ACT AMENDMENT
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INSURANCE ACT AMENDMENT


Mr. T. L. CHURCH (Toronto Northwest) moved for leave to introduce Bill No. 200 to amend the Insurance Act (lapsed policies).


?

Some hon. MEMBERS:

Explain.

Topic:   INSURANCE ACT AMENDMENT
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CON

Thomas Langton Church

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CHURCH:

The object of this amendment is to require annually a sworn statement by insurance companies of their lapsed policies. Of the new business written annually, forty to fifty per cent is lapsed, surrendered or confiscated. This bill gives the superintendent of insurance power not only to check up the revenues, but also to protect the policy holders who have paid in less than three years' premiums, and who at present lose all the premiums they have paid in if they should happen to be out of work and are unable to continue paying the premiums. This will be a protection both to the public and the government.

Motion agreed to and bill read the first time.

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PRIVILEGE-MR. DUFF

LIB

William Duff

Liberal

Mr. WILLIAM DUFF (Antigonish-Guys-borough):

I desire, Mr. Speaker, to speak

to a question of privilege. I have been interested in public affairs in this country for some thirty-three years, and during that time I have always been ready, when my opponents met me on the political platform or elsewhere, to extend to them the courtesies which I expected from them. Yesterday afternoon, when the resolution of the Minister of National Revenue (Mr. Euler) was under discussion, dealing with proposed amendments to the Customs Act, the hon. member for West Hamilton (Mr. Bell) in my absence arose in his place and made certain statements. Those statements wfill be found at page 1892 of Hansard of yesterday. First, the hon. member said:

Then will the minister inform the committee if there was no breach of the Canadian law when the steamer Kennedy was taken in for hovering in the Northumberland straits with $20,000 worth of Scotch whiskey belonging to a company of which the hon. member for Antigonish-Guysborough was president?

A little further on will be found the second statement:

If the minister is correct in that, perhaps he will be able to inform the committee why the $20,000 worth of wet goods carried by the Kennedy was afterwards handed back?

Now, Mr. Speaker, as I said a moment ago,

I was not in the house yesterday to answer those statements. If they are true, I would have nothing more to say; if they are untrue, then the language permissible to me under the

Privilege-Mr. Duff

rules is not sufficiently strong to express my indignation. Of course, I regret that the hon. member is not in his place, and I would gladly wait for him to take his seat if I were not afraid that my hon. friend the Minister of National Revenue (Mr. Euler) will not within the next fortnight or month be in a position to go on with the legislation amending the Customs Act which is now before the house. Consequently I feel that in fairness to myself I must deal with this matter immediately.

Two years ago, during the course of the general election, the hon. gentleman addressed a public meeting in my home town of Lunenburg, where he had full opportunity to deal with the Kennedy matter, but seated with him on the platform were prominent Conservatives of the locality, and throughout his speech he never once dealt with smuggling, boot-legging and rum-running on the Atlantic or Pacific coast; he confined himself entirely to what had been taking place on the Quebec border. That shows the courage of the hon. gentleman. Yesterday he said:

-the steamer Kennedy was taken in for hovering in the Northumberland straits-*

I deny absolutely that the steamer Kennedy was taken into Pictou for hovering in the Northumberland straits during any period. There is no such vessel as the steamer Kennedy.

Topic:   PRIVILEGE-MR. DUFF
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?

An hon. MEMBER:

The W. C. Kennedy.

Topic:   PRIVILEGE-MR. DUFF
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LIB

William Duff

Liberal

Mr. DUFE:

Don't worry; I am coming to it; take your medicine. There was a schooner called the W. C. Kennedy-and this is not the first time that a few of my Tory friends have referred to it. It was brought up before the special committee of this house which investigated the customs department in the session of 1936. It was also brought up by some more of my Conservative friends before the customs commission, and last year I had the privilege of coming to Ottawa, at the country's expense, and giving evidence before the commission with regard to the W. C. Kennedy.

It is quite true 'that I had the schooner W. C. Kennedy built in the year 1920 for parties in Newfoundland, but as they could not take delivery of her I formed a company to take over the boat. She is a little three-masted schooner. If I remember correctly, I sold the W. C. Kennedy in 1923, about six months before she was illegally seized- mark you, not legally, but illegally seized- in Northumberland straits, nine and a half miles east by south of Pictou island. At the time of this illegal seizure I had no interest whatever in the schooner, and I had nothing rMr. Duff.]

whatever to do with paying the deposit of $400, which I have been accused of doing, not openly by a few individuals but surreptitiously. ,

Now, sir, the really serious charge is that I was president of a company which owned $20,000 worth of scotch whiskey, or, to put it in the words of the bon. member for West Hamilton:

-$20,000 worth of Scotch whiskey belonging to a company of which the hon. member for Antigonish-G-uysborough was president.

I say that this statement is not true. Perhaps under the rules I cannot characterize it as false, but I do say that it is absolutely untrue; there is not a scintilla of truth in it.

I never was an officer of any company or any body of individuals that purchased Scotch whiskey or liquor of any kind to smuggle into Canada. I was never the president of, nor had I any connection with, any company that smuggled liquor into Canada. I never had any connection with any person who either purchased, smuggled or sold or handled whiskey or any other liquor in Canada. Before the commission in Ottawa I made a sworn statement that I never bought liquors, that I never smuggled liquors to sell, and that I never sold liquors. Under the circumstances I submit, Mr. Speaker, that it is grossly unfair for any hon. gentleman to get up on the floor and make such unfounded statements in respect to another member which cannot be proven, as was done by the hon. member for West Hamilton, in respect to myself.

Topic:   PRIVILEGE-MR. DUFF
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PRIVATE BILLS

LIB

Hewitt Bostock (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

In order to facilitate the business of the house, I suppose I might call the numbers of these bills and make one motion for their first reading. By unanimous consent I will do so.

It is moved by Mr. Jacobs, seconded by Mr Wellington Hay, that Bills 167, 172, 173, 174, 175, 176, 177, 178, 179, 180, 181, 182, 183, 184, 185, and 186 be now read the first time.

Motion agreed to on division.

Topic:   PRIVATE BILLS
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FIRST READING-SENATE BILLS


Bill No. 167, for the relief of Katie Abramo-vitch.-Mr. Jacobs. Bill No. 172, for the relief of Claire Ellen Burke.-Mr. Anderson (Toronto). Bill No. 173, for the relief of George Edgar Gooderham - Mr. Young (Toronto). Bill No. 174, for the relief of Pearl Hazel Clement.-Mr. Arthurs. Bill No. 175, for the relief of John Arthur Towers Irvine-Mr. Church. Questions Bill No. 176, for the relief of William Henry King.-Mr. Clark. Bill No. 177, for the relief of John Pepper.- Mr. Garland (Carleton). Bill No. 178, for the relief of Caroline Mildred Potter.-Mr. Edwards (Waterloo). Bill No. 179, for the relief of Fanny Alrheta Schaefer. Mr. Clark. Bill No. 180, for the relief of Ivy Ethel James Sergent.-Mr. Robinson. Bill No. 181, for the relief of Angelo Spada-fore.-Mr. Garland (Carleton). Bill No. 182, for the relief of Lena Zimmerman Staples.-Mr. Hock&. Bill No. 183, for the relief of Audie Bertha Stewart.-Mr. Pettit. Bill No. 184, for the relief of Gertrude Aileen VanderVoort.-Mr. Casselman. Bill No. 185, for the relief of Roy James Vollans.-Mr. McPhee. Bill No. 186, for the relief of John Young. -Mr. Clark.


QUESTIONS

April 11, 1928