March 18, 1935

GOVERNOR GENERAL'S SPEECH

ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF ADDRESS IN REPLY

CON

Pierre Édouard Blondin (Speaker of the Senate)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPEAKER:

I have the honour to inform the house that I have received a message from His Excellency the Governor General, signed by his own hand, reading as follows:

I have received with great pleasure the address you have voted in reply to my speech at the opening of parliament, and thank you for it sincerely.

Bessborough.

Government House,

Ottawa.

Topic:   GOVERNOR GENERAL'S SPEECH
Subtopic:   ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF ADDRESS IN REPLY
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SUPPLEMENTARY ESTIMATES, 1934-35


A message from His Excellency the Governor General transmitting supplementary estimates for the financial year ending March 31, 1935, was presented by Right Hon. Sir George Perley (Acting Prime Minister), read by Mr. Speaker to the house, and referred to the committee of supply.


ESTIMATES, 1935-36


A message from His Excellency the Governor General transmitting estimates-Canadian Government Merchant Marine, Canadian National Steamships and Maritime Freight Rates Act-for the financial year ending March 31, 1936, was presented by Right Hon. Sir George Perley (Acting Prime Minister), read by Mr. Speaker to the house, and referred to the committee of supply.


PRIVILEGE-MR. SAUVE

CON

Arthur Sauvé (Postmaster General)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. ARTHUR SAUVE (Postmaster General):

The hon. member for Gloucester (Mr. Veniot), during the discussion of the Post Office estimates on the 14th instant, called my attention to rumours of immense profits being made through the sale of stamps by the philatelic section of the department. To pre-

Privilege-Mr. Sauve

vent misunderstanding may I be permitted to quote from Hansard, pages 1723 and 1724. The hon. member stated:

Up until 1932 new issues were not sold through an agency, they were sold through the department; and if my memory serves me aright, in some instances amounts of $15,000, $20,000 and $30,000 were realized by the officials and paid into the treasury of this country.

The hon. member added:

At the present time any profit which might be gained through the sale of these stamps does not come to the government; all the government receives is the small amount it gets from the agency.

To this I replied, as reported on page 1723 of Hansard:

The philatelic branch has had a revenue of about $50,000 this year. It sells all stamps at face value. . . . They are not sold through an agency unless you call the philatelic branch an agency.

Further on the hon. member for Gloucester said:

To-day that revenue is nil, but those handling these stamps are making a fortune.

I then replied to the hon. member that if he wished to make a direct accusation of graft in regard to the sale of stamps, I would immediately look into the matter. The hon. member replied:

I did not say there was graft in the department. I said that the practice of the department led to graft to people outside the department but not in the department. I am not accusing the department of graft.

The hon. member added as reported on page 1725.

I want a definite answer to a question which interests the public as a whole concerning what to my mind is one of the worst principles ever established in the Post Office Department, namely, allowing outsiders to make a profit on the sale of stamps which should go to the government.

From the foregoing it may be inferred that the hon. member has clearly stated: That since 1932 the government has been deprived of some revenues by the fact that a philatelic section has been organized in the Post Office Department; that people outside the department have made immense profits through the sale of such stamps, and that the establishment of this section is "the worst principle ever established in the Post Office Department."

Since the hon. member claimed that he was not satisfied with the answer I gave on February 20 to the hon. member for North York (Mr. Mulock) and the further explanations given during the discussion of the

estimates, I promised to make a further inquiry into this matter. I wish now, with the leave of the house, to read a memorandum which will clarify the whole situation.

Prior to 1932 postage stamps sold to collectors were handled by the postage stamp division staff which also supplied all postage stamps to post offices. In view of serious criticisms made of the department that philatelists could not get proper information concerning stamps sold to collectors and also because the department seemed to be losing considerable revenue from this source, the work of the philatelic sales was organized in 1932.

No sale of unused stamps has been made under the philatelic section nor by the department since the philatelic section was formed, at more than the face value of the stamps.

In order that such work would be efficiently directed, this section, which forms an integral part of the organization of the department and is manned entirely by departmental employees, was placed under the direction of an official who had proper knowledge of such work and who could deal effectively with questions raised by philatelists. Since the organization of the philatelic section sales to collectors have averaged between $50,000 and $60,000 yearly and in the present year are expected to attain the highest figure in their history; the sales this year to date indicate a revenue of approximately $70,000.

Under the previous method of handling sales to collectors the average per annum was approximately $8,000 and the highest sale attained prior to 1930 was $30,000 in 1929. The revenue accruing from these sales has increased nearly nine times over any revenues received up to 1927 and has more than doubled under the present system the highest receipts prior to the formation of the philatelic section. The average sales for the past three years have been more than five times the overhead cost to the department, including salaries of the employees.

The department does not attempt to provide continuous sale of used postage stamps. A small quantity of such stamps is made available through preparation of these stamps for sale by an employee. When such stamps are available they are sold in numbers not greater than ten stamps of any one particular issue to one person, in order that collectors generally may have the privilege of obtaining them when possible, instead of allowing the whole supply to be bought in by dealers.

As shown in figures given in answer to a question asked in this house this year, the revenue for the last two fiscal years totalled

Questions

$155 from the sale of used stamps. Practically all used stamps sold to the public are sold by stamp dealers who obtain their supplies, not from the Post Office Department nor from any post office official, but from supplies salvaged from private sources. The Post Office Department does not deal in stamps having a known enhanced philatelic value, nor does it charge a premium on any stamps it sells. It sometimes happens, however, that stamps sold by the department at face value subsequently increase in their philatelic value, which has no relation to their value as postage.

The department has no official information regarding the prices at which these stamps are selling now to stamp collectors in the country, nor does it concern itself with such prices. The Post Office Department does not conduct its philatelic sales through any outside agency. All sales of stamps of any kind to collectors and dealers are made through the philatelic division of the department. All revenue from these sales is deposited to the credit of the receiver general of Canada on post office account, and becomes an integral part of post office revenue. There has been no deviation from this rule at any time.

In the statement that I have just read to the house the hon. member for North York (Mr. Mulock) also will find the answer to both questions asked by him and appearing on page 1854 of Hansard of March 14, in the French version and on page 1724 in the English.

Topic:   PRIVILEGE-MR. SAUVE
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PRIVATE BILLS

FIRST READING-SENATE BILLS


Bill No. 34 for the relief of Marie Philo-mene Florence Maher McCaffrey-Mr. Heaps. Bill No. 36 for the relief of Charles Henry Campbell-Mr. White (Mount Royal). Bill No. 37 for the relief of Maria Elphin-stone Hastie Ivinnon-Mr. Bell (St. Antoine).


QUESTIONS


(Questions answered orally are indicated by an asterisk.)


ROYAL CANADIAN MOUNTED POLICE

LIB

Joseph Enoil Michaud

Liberal

Mr. MICHAUD:

What was the total cost to the dominion government for the maintenance of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in New Brunswick, in the years 1932, 1933, and 1934?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ROYAL CANADIAN MOUNTED POLICE
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CON

Hugh Guthrie (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GUTHRIE:

1932

$212,501 911933

395,941 201934

356,864 86

Note.-The figures set forth above include

92582-113J

all expenditures during the respective years shown for:

(1) The enforcement of federal statutes, including those connected with the preventive service.

(2) The enforcement of provincial statutes and the Criminal Code.

(3) The R.C.M. Police assumed the duties of the enforcement of the provincial statutes and the Criminal Code in the province of New Brunswick, and also the duties of the preventive service, from the 1st of April, 1932.

(4) The following amounts have been received or will be received shortly from the New Brunswick government, under the terms

of the agreement:

1932 $ 75,000 paid

1933

100,000 paid1934

75,000 paid

1934 (Outstanding and

to be paid shortly).. 25,000

and which should be deducted from the total costs above quoted.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ROYAL CANADIAN MOUNTED POLICE
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CANADIAN LEGATION-PARIS

LIB

Mr. POULIOT:

Liberal

1. What is the total amount paid to the Hon. Philippe Roy, Canadian minister to France, from January 1, 1931, until now?

2. During that period, did he spend anything for entertainments?

3. If so, what is the total of that expenditure?

4. What was the total cost of the Canadian legation in Paris for the same period?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   CANADIAN LEGATION-PARIS
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CON

Sir GEORGE PERLEY: (Minister Without Portfolio)

Conservative (1867-1942)

1. The total amount paid to the Honourable Philippe Roy, Canadian minister to France, from January 1, 1931, to the 31st January, 1935, for salary, allowances and travel, was $99,956.63.

2 and 3. Expenditures for entertainment were made from the allowances granted to the Canadian minister at Paris. In addition, there has been paid from the vote for the Canadian legation at Paris, an amount of $498.96-the expenses of Dominion day reception, 1st July, 1934-Jacques Cartier celebration.

4. The total cost of the Canadian legation in Paris from the 1st January, 1931, to the 31st January, 1935, was $342,222.92.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   CANADIAN LEGATION-PARIS
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March 18, 1935