June 1, 1939

CON

Hugh Alexander Stewart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEWART:

I do not desire to violate the rules, but the minister has discussed one amendment; I take it that there are others. Does the issue relate to just one amendment; are the others which are set out in the votes and proceedings merely for the purpose of carrying it out?

Topic:   INCOME WAR TAX ACT
Subtopic:   CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS-CONTROL OF THE COMMONS OVER FINANCIAL MEASURES
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LIB

James Lorimer Ilsley (Minister of National Revenue)

Liberal

Mr. ILSLEY:

The other two amendments are merely verbal, clerical.

Topic:   INCOME WAR TAX ACT
Subtopic:   CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS-CONTROL OF THE COMMONS OVER FINANCIAL MEASURES
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CON

Hugh Alexander Stewart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEWART:

Consequential?

Topic:   INCOME WAR TAX ACT
Subtopic:   CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS-CONTROL OF THE COMMONS OVER FINANCIAL MEASURES
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LIB

James Lorimer Ilsley (Minister of National Revenue)

Liberal

Mr. ILSLEY:

Just verbal corrections-a little improvement of phrasing.

Topic:   INCOME WAR TAX ACT
Subtopic:   CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS-CONTROL OF THE COMMONS OVER FINANCIAL MEASURES
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CCF

Major James William Coldwell

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

Mr. M. J. COLDWELL (Rosetown-Biggar):

I do not think it is a question of discussing the merits or demerits of the amendment which has been made. To my mind, and I speak entirely as a layman, the question involves the privileges of this chamber, and the fundamental privilege of this chamber is that it shall have unchallenged control of the pursestrings, if I may put it that way. The long history of the development of our parliamentary institutions has been a struggle by the commons for the control of taxation and the expenditure of revenue; and in spite of the fact that the motion which has been moved to concur in the senate amendment is couched

Income War Tax

in very careful language, and sets out the privileges of this house in this regard, I think that it is unwise for this House of Commons to accept that motion, even in the form in which it is made. The time has long since passed when this parliament should have modified the powers of the other chamber. Nearly thirty years ago the British parliament made the House of Commons supreme over the House of Lords, and our position in this parliament is similar to the position of the British House of Commons before the passage of the Parliament Act in 1911. It seems to me that we should not concur in any manner in the action of the senate, that we should affirm our right in the proper way, which is to refuse to admit that the other chamber has any right whatsoever to interfere with a decision of this house regarding a matter of taxation and of revenue. In effect, although the motion to concur is carefully phrased, we are allowing a precedent to be made. We are objecting to it; nevertheless the precedent is there-

Topic:   INCOME WAR TAX ACT
Subtopic:   CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS-CONTROL OF THE COMMONS OVER FINANCIAL MEASURES
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LIB

James Lorimer Ilsley (Minister of National Revenue)

Liberal

Mr. ILSLEY:

It has been done before.

Topic:   INCOME WAR TAX ACT
Subtopic:   CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS-CONTROL OF THE COMMONS OVER FINANCIAL MEASURES
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CCF

Major James William Coldwell

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

Mr. COLDWELL:

And the record would show that we have at least accepted under protest what the other chamber has done in this regard. Although the end of the session is in sight I believe the course of wisdom would be for this house to refuse to accept these amendments and, if necessary, to call a conference to discuss them. Under no circumstances would I, as a member of this house, accept any infringement of the rights of the house by the other chamber. I

believe the time has come when we should have greater power in this chamber than we have at the present time. Therefore I rise to express a point of view and to declare that so far as we are concerned-I think I am speaking for our little group-we shall have to oppose the motion to concur, on the grounds I have given.

Topic:   INCOME WAR TAX ACT
Subtopic:   CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS-CONTROL OF THE COMMONS OVER FINANCIAL MEASURES
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LIB

Ernest Lapointe (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada)

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE (Quebec East):

Perhaps I might explain the situation with regard to this difference of opinion between the senate and this house touching the rights of the senate on bills relating to money matters or to taxation. It is a long-standing conflict in this country, and the proposal for a conference might be stronger if we were not fully aware of the views of the senate-what they are and what they have been-and of our own views as well. Obviously there will have to be a settlement of this conflict some day. I would refer hon. members to page 172 of Beauchesne's Parliamentary Rules and Forms, citations 582, 583 and 584, wherein they will see that the senate on one occasion went to the extent of asking the 71492-305

legal opinion of two eminent lawyers, the late Eugene Lafleur, K.C., and Mr. Aime Geoffrion, who both gave the opinion that while the senate had no right to originate a money bill, they had the right to amend it as fully as the House of Commons. On May 22, 1918, the senate adopted a report, which of course is an ex -parte document, setting forth certain conclusions. The first reads:

That the Senate of Canada has and always has had since it was created, the power to amend bills originating in the Commons appropriating any part of the revenue or imposing a tax by reducing the amounts therein, but has not the right to increase the same without the consent of the crown.

The House of Commons has never accepted the theory enunciated in the report from which I have just quoted, but has always contended that the senate has not the right to amend money bills, especially bills respecting taxation. As I have pointed out, it affects the balance of ways and means which the House of Commons has fixed to meet the expenditures for the following year, and this is certainly the prerogative and privilege of the House of Commons. As I say, the House of Commons has never conceded that claim of the senate; but in this instance the amendment is not, after all, so objectionable and has been accepted under protest.

Far from to-day's procedure creating a precedent, I find that there is even a formula in Beauchesne's Parliamentary Rules and Forms, form 59. The form there reads:

That the clerk do carry back the bill to the Senate and acquaint their honours that this house hath agreed to their amendments, the Minister of Finance accepting the said amendments with a protest against the right of the senate to make amendments to money bills.

Our motion to-day goes further than that, because it is more assertive of the rights of the commons. A conference would be useless. The senate is absolutely firm as to its rights, and we are equally firm on our side, but as I say, ultimately the question will have to be settled. I do not wish to say anything which might be misunderstood, but I believe it would be in the interests of the second chamber not to precipitate a conflict on this question.

Topic:   INCOME WAR TAX ACT
Subtopic:   CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS-CONTROL OF THE COMMONS OVER FINANCIAL MEASURES
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LIB

Arthur Graeme Slaght

Liberal

Mr. A. G. SLAGHT (Parry Sound):

I desire to express my views, and I can do so without detaining the house by saying that the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar (Mr. Coldwell) has stated precisely the opinion I hold on this question.

Mr. A. MacG. YOUNG (Saskatoon): Although this bill may contain nothing very objectionable in form and substance, the principle involved in accepting in this

4848 . COMMONS

Supply-Public Works-Harbours and Rivers

chamber what we believe to be an infringement of our rights is a principle that should not be entertained. I protest strongly against accepting that principle in this house.

Topic:   INCOME WAR TAX ACT
Subtopic:   CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS-CONTROL OF THE COMMONS OVER FINANCIAL MEASURES
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LIB

Louis-Prudent-Alexandre Robichaud

Liberal

Mr. L. P. A. ROBICHAUD (Kent, N.B.):

I trust that to-day I shall not be denied my just right to speak in this house. I do not think it makes much difference what we do with these amendments. We need not have any fears about establishing a precedent or waiving our right to the sole privilege of imposing burdens on the people. That precedent was established, without protest, yesterday.

Topic:   INCOME WAR TAX ACT
Subtopic:   CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS-CONTROL OF THE COMMONS OVER FINANCIAL MEASURES
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LIB

Walter Edward Foster (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

Shall the motion carry?

Topic:   INCOME WAR TAX ACT
Subtopic:   CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS-CONTROL OF THE COMMONS OVER FINANCIAL MEASURES
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CCF

Major James William Coldwell

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

Mr. COLDWELL:

On division.

Motion agreed to; amendments read the second time and concurred in.

Topic:   INCOME WAR TAX ACT
Subtopic:   CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS-CONTROL OF THE COMMONS OVER FINANCIAL MEASURES
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DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS


The house in committee of supply, Mr. Sanderson in the chair. Chief engineer's branch. Construction, repairs and improvements of harbours and rivers. 5-iS. Quebec. Aguanish-wharf, $5,500. Anse au Beaufils-to complete concrete pavement (revote), $2,400. Bagotville-wharf repairs, $7,200. Baie des Sables-wharf extension. $25,000. Baie Ste. Catherine-to purchase and repair wharf, $25,000. Baie St. Paul-protection work extension (revote $14,800), $23,500. Berthier-dredging (revote $8,500), $10,000. Berthierville-protection wall and ice-breakers (revote), $20,000. Black Cape (Howatson's Point)-wharf extension (revote $3,700), $33,700. Boischatel-wharf extension, $15,000. Bromptonville-protection work, $20,000. Cacouna-wharf repairs, $14,600. Cap Chat-deepwater wharf (revote $20,000),



Cape Cove (Anse du Cap)-wharf reconstruction (revote), $36,000. Cap des Rosiers-wharf, $20,000. Cap Vert (M. I.)-landing pier, $6,100. Chambly Basin-protection work, $10,000. Chicoutimi-contribution towards protection work, $35,000. Colonie des Greves-protection work, $8,000. Contrecceur-protection work, $35,000. Cross Point-wharf reconstruction. $56,000. Disraeli-protection work, $15,000. Drainage schemes, $100,000. Drummondville-protection work, $25,000. East Angus-protection work, $10,000. Garthby-protection work, $10,000. Granby-protection work, $6,000. Grande Entree (West Point), M.I.-breastwork extension (revote $5,500), $6,400. Grand Metis-wharf and dredging (revote), $15,000. Grande Vallee-reconstruction of jetty (revote), $9,300. fMr. Young.} Greenlay-protection work, $20,000. Harrington-wharf extension (revote $20,000), $42,000. lie aux Coudres-wharf extension, $10,000. Kamouraska-wharf repairs and improvements, $19,000. Lachine-protection work, $9,000. Lac Megantic-protection work, $10,000. Lacolle River-dredging, the provincial government to contribute a like amount (revote). $5,500. Lanoraie-protection work, $12,750. Louiseville-protection work $10,000. La Tabatiere-wharf extension, $10,500. La Tortue-dredging the provincial government to contribute, $16,000. L'Anse a Brillant-fishing harbour (revote), $7,300. Longue Pointe de Mingan-breakwater, $20,- Lome dry dock-new power house-pump house equipment and machine shop, $100,000. Magpie-breakwater, $14,000. Malbaie-wharf extension, $56,000. Manicouagan-wharf improvements-one-third of cost to be contributed by the Ontario Paper Co., Ltd. (revote), $26,000. Marsouins-wharf extension, $21,500. Matane-harbour improvements (revote $40.000), $78,000. New Carlisle (Marsh Creek)-fishing harbour (revote $37,000), $100,000. ^Newport Point-wharf (revote $10,000), Old Harry, M.I.-breakwater (revote $8,000) $9,000. Perce-;wharf, $25,000. Paspebiac (Barachois)-fishing harbour, $20, Petite Madeleine-wharf, $8,800. Pointe aux Anglais-breakwater (revote) $16,600. Pointe aux Trembles-protection work, $50, 000. Pointe du Lac-icebreakers, $5,400. Pointe Lebel-wharf (revote $12,000), $25,000 Port St. Francois-wharf reconstruction $52,000. Quebec, St. Charles River-protection work $60,000. Quebec-wharf extension, $55,000. Rageneau-wharf (revote $14,700), $20,000. Rawdon-wharf, $5,000. Richelieu river-improvements, $325,000. Richmond-protection work, $15,000. Rimouski-harbour improvements, $186,200. Riviere au Renard-fishing harbour (revote $25,000), $51,000. Riviere des Hurons-contribution towards dredging, the balance of the cost to be borne by the_ province (revote), $44,000. Riviere du Loup, en bas-wharf (revote), $36,400. Riviere du Pot au Beurre-contribution towards improvements, the provincial government to bear a like amount, $10,000. Riviere Noire (St. Simeon)-wharf, $20,000. Ruisseau a la Loutre-wharf extension, $25,000. Ruisseau Chapados (Gascons)-fishing harbour (revote), $7,100. Ruisseau Masse-dredging-the provincial government to contribute a like amount (revote $10,250), $11,300. Ruisseau Pariseau - contribution towards dredging, the balance of cost to be borne by the province (revote), $10,000. Ste. Anne de Bellevue-dredging (revote $3,300), $4,400. Supply-Public Works-Harbours and Rivers St. St. St. Ste. Anne des Monts-wharf repairs. $50,000. Ste. Emelie-wharf reconstruction (revote), $30,000. St. Hyacinthe-protection work, $30,000. Ignace de Loyola-wharf, $33,000. , Irenee-wharf reconstruction, $25,000. i5t. Jean, I.O.-wharf reconstruction, $10,000. St. Jerome-protection wall, $11,000. . St. Johns to Lake Champlain-dredging (estimated cost $415,000), $100,000. St. Joseph de Sorel-protection work, $10,000. St. Joseph d'Alma-wharf, $4,300. St. Lambert-protection work, $25,000. St. Laurent, I.O.-wharf reconstruction, $3,000. , , . , St. Maurice de L'Echourie-wharf repairs and improvements (revote), $13,000. St. Omer-dredging, $9,000. St Romuald-protection work, $25,000. Sacre-Cceur (Anse de Roche)-wharf reconstruction, $10,000. Sault au Mouton-channel, $3,000. Sorel-harbour improvements (revote $8,000), $250,000. % , , Tadoussae (Anse a l'Eau)-wharf reconstruction and improvements. $16,000. Terrebonne-protection wall, $18,000. Valleyfield-protection work, $25,000. Vercheres - wharf reconstruction (revote $1,500), $25,000. "Vercheres-protection work, $15,000. Varennes-protection work, $22,000. Woodman's Beach-wharf extension, $3,015.


LIB

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

Liberal

Hon. P. J. A. CARDIN (Minister of Public Works):

When the house rose last night we were considering harbours and rivers, proposed expenditures for the province of Quebec. The hon. member for Leeds (Mr. Stewart) had raised a question with regard to the proposed expenditure for Richelieu river improvement. This matter was discussed last year and the year before. It relates to the regulating of the flow of the Richelieu river by the erection of a dam which would retain the flow of water in the spring after dredging has been done, from St. Johns to the boundary. As far back as 1907 the United States authorities objected to this dredging being done. They contended that there existed in the bed of the river a natural obstruction to the flow of the water, and that if the obstruction were removed by dredging, the flow of the river would increase and thus lower the level of lake Champlain. At that time the proposal of a dam was discussed between the Canadian and the United States authorities, and the principle of a regulating dam was adopted by both countries. This dam is built with a certain number of sluices which can be opened in the spring when the water is high; as soon as the river comes to its natural level, the doors will be closed and the water will be kept at th; ' level in lake Champlain and the Richelieu river in the vicinity of the boundary.

The votes of last year, two years ago and this year have contemplated the carrying on 71492-305J

of that project, which is designed particularly to reclaim a large area of low land between St. Johns and the boundary. It is estimated that hundreds of thousands of dollars would be realized on these low lands if the water could be made to disappear more quickly in the spring. Under present conditions the water stays on these low lands so long that in most years it is impossible for the farmers to draw any benefit from their lands, owing as I have indicated, to the natural obstacles in the bed of the Richelieu river. If we disposed of those obstacles the water would flow away more rapidly, thus permitting cultivation of the low lands. But we cannot dredge that out without establishing a control of the flow of the river during the rest of the year.

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS
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CON

Hugh Alexander Stewart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEWART:

These obstacles to which the minister refers would be below the dam?

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS
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LIB

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

Liberal

Mr. CARDIN:

No, above the dam. They prevent the water from flowing away quickly enough in the spring to allow cultivation of the low lands. But we cannot dispose of these natural obstacles, because if the channel were opened for the water to flow away more rapidly in the spring it would flow rapidly as well during the rest of the year, and the level of the water of lake Champlain would be lowered.

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS
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CON

Hugh Alexander Stewart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEWART:

It seems to me that maintaining a dam to keep up the level of the water will defeat the object in view in removing the obstacles, unless the obstacles are below the dam.

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS
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LIB

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

Liberal

Mr. CARDIN:

Probably I am not making myself clear. At present there are obstacles in the river from St. Johns to the boundary. The river is not very deep. In the spring when the water is high in lake Champlain and in Canada adjoining the boundary the water cannot flow away rapidly enough on account of these natural obstacles. If we would dispose of these natural obstacles the problem would be solved; but we cannot dispose of them without providing a regulating system for the summer season. Therefore we are providing a dam in which the doors will be opened in the spring so that when the dredging is done the water will flow away as rapidly as possible. As soon as the high waters are disposed of the doors of the dam will be closed, keeping the water at the same level as it is at present, and thus avoiding any lowering of the level of lake Champlain.

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS
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June 1, 1939