May 27, 1935

CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

I do not think there is anything in that; I do not think there is an atom of truth in it. I do not think that anyone but the railways themselves -decides what shall be declared obsolete.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LAB

Abraham Albert Heaps

Labour

Mr. HEAPS:

It appeared in an American newspaper.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

I read in American newspapers a good many things which I should not like to believe, and I am not sure that I have not read in Canadian newspapers things I should not believe.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

My question was whether there had been a meeting of the *association of railways on this continent a.nd at that meeting it was decided what should1 be done in a general way with respect to new equipment.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

I have never heard of any such meeting.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

What kind of equipment is proposed?

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

The information I have is, I believe, correct, generally speaking; there may be some slight variations. The Canadian National will order refrigerator cars, gondola cars, snow ploughs, automobile cars and sand cars, as well as some diesel engines and passenger locomotives. The Canadian Pacific Railway will order box cars, refrigerator ears, mail express cars, coaches, coal cars and 'heavy locomotives and passenger locomotives. That is the list that has been given.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LAB

Abraham Albert Heaps

Labour

Mr. HEAPS:

'Could1 not that same equipment be manufactured in the railway shops?

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

I will deal with that later.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

What kind of locomotives is it proposed to secure?

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

The Canadian Pacific

Railway is ordering heavy locomotives and passenger locomotives-technical details I am unable to give-and the Canadian National, diesels and passenger locomotives.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

Has the minister

considered the effect of such improvement upon the general labour situation? We have been told here that there are a large number of railway men unemployed, and with better equipment of that kind less labour is likely to be employed. I was told when I was in Winnipeg the other day that the possible effect might be to cut out the intermediate

[Mr. Manion.j

divisional point and have the trains driven straight through, say from Winnipeg to Calgary or Edmonton; the locomotive would not have to be changed. If that is the sort of equipment that is being proposed then it is a matter for serious consideration whether the present traffic necessities of the country demand motive power of that type, especially as it may have the effect of laying off a very large number of train crews who with the present type of equipment to-day are necessary. I should be very glad if the minister, who has become more or less an expert in railway matters, would inform the house with regard to this aspect of the case.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

Of course I do not believe there is any truth in the suggestion made to my hon. friend and also made to me that this equipment will interfere at all with the present employment in the shops of the railways. That is the statement that is made; it has been stated to me that if the railways buy this equipment, because of having a little better equipment they will be able to give more efficient service and this will mean less work in the shops.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

Less in the shops

and less in the running trades.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

I do not believe there

is anything to that, though far be it from me to think I am in any way an expert in the matter. But that has been put up to the railway companies and they say to me that it is not correct.

As regards the work in the railway shops, it was the intention of the administration, as I mentioned in the house before, to ask the railways to give as much of this to the railway shops as they economically could. I find in the statement the railways have given me that they count on giving nearly $4,000,000 worth. I did use the figure $3,000,000. By the figures they have given me, the Canadian Pacific and Canadian National shops will get nearly $4,000,000 worth of extra work in connection with this $15,000,000.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LIB

William Daum Euler

Liberal

Mr. EULER:

Is it only repairs?

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

There are some refrigerator cars that the Canadian National are counting on making in their own shops.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

Why should not

all the equipment be made in the railway shops?

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

If my hon. friend will permit me, I will give the *information. The reason they do not make it all in the railway

Public Works Program

shops is that they are not capable of doing so, despite all the propaganda which has been sent out from practically every railway shop in the dominion. I am making that statement not on my own authority but on that of Mr. Hungerford and Mr. Coleman. I put that question u,p to them because from all over the country I have been receiving from every shop the statement that is implied in the hon. gentleman's remark that the shops of Canada should be and are able to manufacture these different types of equipment without, as they suggest-, practically any increase in capital expenditure, and1 that therefore this Should be left entirely to them. I put that up to both Mr. 'Coleman and Mr. Hungerford, and I have before me messages which I should like to read to the committee as coming from both those gentlemen, who are the best authorities I know of on the railway situation. The one from Mr. Hungerford I received just a few days ago, because I wanted to reply to these railwaymen. I said: I do not intend to attempt to answer them myself, but I think you men should put in writing your opinions. As a matter of fact I did not speak to Mr. Hungerford at all; I had my deputy draw the matter to his attention. iMr. Hungerford's reply is in the form of a telegram addressed to me from Montreal under date of May 23, as follows:

Replying to your inquiry as to how the railways would be affected if the various car and locomotive building establishment were compelled to go out of business. It has never been the policy of this company to construct m its own shops any substantial amount of new equipment. While some of our shops are equipped and are suitable for the construction of a certain few classes of equipment, they are not suitable or equipped for the construction of the general run of new modern equipment. If car and locomotive building companies in Canada ceased to operate it would be necessary to remodel and further equip certain railway shop plants which would involve substantial capital expenditure and be a duplication of existing manufacturing facilities.

S. J. Hungerford.

The reply from Mr. Coleman is in the form of a letter addressed to me from Montreal. also under date of May 23, as follows:

The shops of the Canadian Pacific, with the partial exception of one shop, were not primarily designed, or equipped, for the work of building new equipment. To adapt them properly for the construction of a considerable amount of such equipment, at a reasonable cost, would involve capital expenditures for new machinery and' other facilities, which the railway company does not desire to undertake.

The policy of the railway companies in this country has been to operate their shops on repair and conversion -work and to refrain from entering into general competition with Canadian manufacturing companies so long as they can obtain material and equipment from

such companies at fair prices. No departure from that policy should be undertaken without grave consideration because of the disturbance to industry which would be involved.

We would view with concern the permanent closing down of equipment building plants in Canada, as in their absence, with return to normal traffic conditions, the demand for additional equipment would place the railways to some extent at the mercy of foreign manufacture.

Yours sincerely,

D. C. Coleman,

Vice-President.

That is the opinion of the two railway companies. I might deal with this a little more fully; it will probably answer the questions as I go along, because I have had the same arguments put up to me by every railway shop in Canada. I suppose we are all sympathetic to the railway shop men, but we must not forget that the railway shop men of both companies have been kept at work at any rate to a certain extent throughout the depression, largely by the assistance of the government. Undoubtedly that is true of the Canadian Pacific, because on two occasions we lent them money to keep their shops open for certain periods of the year.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LIB

William Daum Euler

Liberal

Mr. EULER:

The government gave them

money.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, 'UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OP RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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May 27, 1935