May 31, 1939


Item agreed to. Chief engineer's branch. Dredging. 319. British Columbia, $225,000.


CON

Harry James Barber

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BARBER:

Would the minister give the particulars of this vote. I notice the details show $9,300 for new plant, and there is an increase of $40,000 in the item. Where is that money to be expended?

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LIB

Pierre-Joseph-Arthur Cardin (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. CARDIN:

My notes indicate that

this increase of $40,000 is required to provide for repairs to dredge No. 305; for hauling out, repairing and installing new lighting plant in dredge Arrow Lakes; for ten new pontoons and one new pipe scow for dredge No. 305, and to provide for several annual maintenance works formerly charged to harbours and rivers generally. There is a contract for repairing dredge No. 305 amounting to $37,675, and on that contract we have to pay this year a balance of $18,375. The sum of $3,925 is allotted for repairs and improvements to the dredge Arrow Lakes; $9,300 is provided for ten pontoons and one pipe scow for dredge No. 305, and $9,970 for increase in day

4820 COMMONS

Supply-Public Works-Telegraph Branch

labour works to provide for annual maintenance works. That makes up the total increase of $40,000. .

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Item agreed to. At six o'clock the committee took recess. After Recess The committee resumed at eight o'clock. Chief architect's branch. Maintenance and operation of graving docks, locks and dams, etc. SZI4. Maintenance and operation of locks and dams, $62,800.


CON

John Ritchie MacNicol

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MacNICOL:

Is the Rideau canal

being operated this year? In former years from my window in the hotel, I used to see boats going up and down, but I have not seen any this year.

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LIB

Pierre-Joseph-Arthur Cardin (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. CARDIN:

This vote does not cover

the Rideau canal; that would be under the Department of Transport.

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Item agreed to. Chief engineer's branch. .Construction, repairs and improvements-har-hours and rivers. 337. British Columbia-harbours and rivers generally for maintenance of services, no new Works to be undertaken, $100,000.


IND
LIB

Pierre-Joseph-Arthur Cardin (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. CARDIN:

General repairs and maintenance on the wharves controlled by the department,

. Item agreed to.

Telegraph branch.

Telegraph and telephone services-operation and maintenance.

$),0. Land and cable telegraph lines-lower St, Lawrence and maritime provinces, including working expenses of vessels for cable work, $135,000.

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CON

Hugh Alexander Stewart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEWART:

There is an increase of

$2,000 in this vote. I take it that the policy of the department is not to undertake any extension of telegraph or telephone lines unless it is almost inevitable. Services are provided by the provincial governments and local companies apart from those maintained under this and following votes. What is the present policy of the department with regard to extensions, and what is the reason for the increased expenditure?

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LIB

Pierre-Joseph-Arthur Cardin (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. CARDIN:

The increase is due to

Statutory increases to employees. As far as the policy of the department is concerned,

we do not go into any territory which is served by a private company or a provincial organization. We do what might be termed pioneering work in order to give communication services to localities where it would be unprofitable for a private company to operate. We resist, as far as humanly possible, all requests made for the establishment of new lines, We are following the policy that prevailed some years ago.

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CON

Hugh Alexander Stewart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEWART:

There is some revenue

derived from these operations; perhaps the minister could give the details for all the items down to No. 345.

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LIB

Pierre-Joseph-Arthur Cardin (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. CARDIN:

In connection with item

340, the last report I have is for 1937-38 when the expenditures were $132,000 and the revenue $42,000, leaving a deficit of about $89,000. I am giving round figures. In 1928-29 the deficit was $163,000, but it has been reduced every year, and this last deficit is the smallest we have ever had. Under item

341, Alberta and Saskatchewan, the deficit was $57,000. Under item 343, British Columbia, northern and Yukon districts, the deficit for 1937-38 was $51,000. Under item 344, Vancouver island district, the deficit for 1937-38 was $43,568.

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CON

Hugh Alexander Stewart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEWART:

Have any of these lines

been sold in the last year or two?

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LIB

Item agreed to. Telegraph branch. Telegraph and telephone services-operation and maintenance. British Columbia-Vancouver island district, $94,000.


CCF

Charles Grant MacNeil

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. MacNEIL:

Has any action been taken toward establishing telephone communication with Stuart island in British Columbia? Representations were made recently that over 4,000 boats had tied up at that point last year while waiting for slack water. A large number of these boats had urgent need to get in touch with the mainland by telephone or telegraph but were unable to do so from the government wharf or any adjacent point. This settlement is increasing in number and in case of accident it would be necessary to communicate with the hospital authorities.

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LIB

Pierre-Joseph-Arthur Cardin (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. CARDIN:

There is no indication of any such request having been made, and I have no information before me on the matter, but I shall be glad to look it up and give my hon. friend an answer to-morrow.

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IND

Alan Webster Neill

Independent

Mr. NEILL:

I am familiar with the situation there, because it is just a few yards outside my district. The need is as the hon.

Supply-Public Works-Telegraph Branch

member has stated, but instead of putting two or three cables and a considerable land line on rocky islands it might be more profitable from, the point of view of expense and service to put in a couple of radiophone machines at the nearest accessible point. These machines , are working well and are being improved every day. I think they would be less expensive, cost less to maintain, and be more effective. The request did not reach the hon. member and myself in time to have an item included in this vote, but I would ask the government to consider including an item in preparing another vote.

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CON

Thomas Langton Church

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CHURCH:

This is an item for telegraph and telephone services in British Columbia, in the northern and Yukon districts. In view of the great emergency on the Pacific ocean to-day what coordination is there between the government of Great Britain and the Canadian government regarding these communication services? Will the minister lay on the table of the house any information he has along that line? Has the minister had correspondence with the British admiralty? Is there any coordinated policy betwen the two governments with respect to these communication services? If not, the votes are wasted.

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May 31, 1939