March 19, 1941

LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Mr. HOWE:

Would it not be good policy to answer one question at a time?

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
CCF

Major James William Coldwell

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

Mr. COLDWELL:

I have a number of

questions to ask. If I give them all to the minister, he may feel inclined to answer them

19, 1941 1683

War Appropriation Bill

at the same time. This policy was outlined to and approved by t.he parliamentary committee on radio broadcasting which sat in 1938 and 1939. These high-power channels, if I may call them that, were looked upon as being ultimately intended for the purposes of the corporation's long-term national publicly-owned coverage. In accordance with this policy, I believe that all subsequent applications for power in excess of 1,000 watts have been rejected. My question in this regard is: If this policy has not been abandoned, have the stations at present obtaining high-power clear channels been so informed? There should be no misunderstanding and no possibility of the owners of the stations feeling that they have vested interests beyond what is covered by the original understanding.

In the Havana agreement, 730 kilocycles is described as a clear channel, but it was not included among the channels to be made available for Canada. In the minister's statements of February 3 and 5, this channel is allocated to station CKAC owned by the Montreal La Presse, which, I believe, is operating on 15,000 watts. My question is: Has Canada obtained this channel in addition to the clear channels obtained in accordance with the agreement made at Havana? If not, has it been obtained in substitution for one or more channels? What is the exact classification of this channel to-day? According to the announcement made by the minister on February 5, when the new allocations go into effect on March 29 the CBC's 50,000 watt Ontario regional transmitter CBL is to operate on a frequency of 740, which is a class 1A channel. Do the technical advisers in the minister's department, or the responsible technical officers of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation consider ten kilocycles to be sufficient separation on the average dial to obviate serious interference between this station near Toronto and station CKAC near Montreal, using 730 kilocycles? I ask this question because my experience, even with a high-powered modern set, has been that it is very difficult to separate stations close together, and I am wondering whether the separation in this instance is sufficient; for, after all, the broadcasting corporation's own stations so far as possible should be relieved of interference from a comparatively high-powered station not far away, and operating only ten units apart. I would ask the minister to look into that matter.

There is this further point: Out of the seventy privately-owned stations in Canada

War Appropriation Bill

which serve a local function, with power of

I, 000 watts or less, stations CKBI, Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, belonging to the Prince Albert radio club, station CFPL, London, Ontario, belonging to the London Free Press, station CHML, Hamilton, Ontario, belonging to the Maple Leaf Radio Company, and station CJBR, Rimouski, Quebec, owned by

J. A. Brilliant, have been allocated channels listed in the Havana agreement as clear, high-power channels. The first station I mentioned, and the last two, have been allocated 900 kilocycles, and the London station 1570 kilocycles. Again, how was this selection made, and what are the classifications of these channels?

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Mr. HOWE:

Surely they are not clear

channels allocated to Canada, are they? Are they not allocated to Mexico?

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
CCF

Major James William Coldwell

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

Mr. COLDWELL:

Then I have this further question: Do the allocations to CKBI, CFPL, CHML and CJBR imply a permission later to increase the power of all or any of these stations to the limit provided for such channels in the international agreements? Again I ask these questions designedly, because I believe it was the intention of parliament, the parliamentary committee, the minister and all concerned to see to it that our own publicly-owned broadcasting system is preserved. I raise these questions so that we may clarify the position, and make certain that there is no possibility of a privately-owned competing broadcasting system being permitted to set itself up in Canada, and thereby in any way interfere with or disturb our nationally-owned system.

Therefore I wish to ask this question: Did the immediate and future requirements of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's longterm plan of national coverage govern the allocation of frequencies announced by the Minister of Munitions and Supply on February 3 and 5? Were all the announced allocations duly recommended by the board of governors of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in accordance with the requirements of the Canadian Broadcasting Act, 1936?

If there has been any departure on the part of the department from the broadcasting board's recommendations, will the minister state in respect of what stations and frequencies, giving particulars and reasons why such departure or departures were taken at that time?

The next question which arises is this: In view of the allocation to privately-owned

stations of some twenty-five class III channels, involving the possibility of using up to 5,000 watts, has the basic principle of the corporation's plan of national coverage been modified to permit of such increases?

I believe the remaining questions relate more or less to the possibility of the setting up of a United States chain in Canada. I ask these questions because it has been suggested to me that unless we safeguard the present position, such a condition might develop. Are stations CFRB Toronto and CKAC Montreal, agencies or outlets of a United States commercial network? What is the exact relationship between these stations and the Columbia broadcasting system?

Has the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, as the national network authority, control of this entire network affiliation, and any stations which may be affiliated with the two stations to which I have referred?

Is it the policy of the board of governors of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation to retain and to maintain a de facto control over all networks or hook-ups, as outlined to and approved by the parliamentary committee on broadcasting of 1939? That refers, of course, to the discussion which took place in the committee and to its subsequent report.

The last question I would ask the minister is this: In view of the importance of radio broadcasting in connection with the present war, and in view of the extent to which it has been used for propaganda and other purposes, has the government considered the advisability, under the circumstances, as a war measure, in the near future to purchase, lease, expropriate or otherwise acquire the outlets from United States networks to which I have just referred, namely, stations CKAC and CFRB?

I have asked these questions because several persons have drawn to my attention some changes which seem to have been made. In view of the minister's statement made in 1937, and the approval given to that policy by the parliamentary committee, before the Havana agreement becomes effective on March 29 I believe it would be well for the house to understand the situation as it now exists, and it should receive assurances that the privileges which have been granted to certain privately-owned stations shall not cause any misunderstanding in the future as to the determination of the House of Commons and the Dominion of Canada to retain this great public service

War Appropriation Bill

as a national public service nationally controlled, serving the Dominion of Canada, and one which shall not be allowed to become a profitable organization for any private group or interests in the country.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Mr. HOWE:

I shall be pleased to submit the hon. member's questions to the technical officers in my department, and to give the answers at a later date. In the meantime, however, I would say that so far as the board's attitude toward the power of stations is concerned, there has been no change in policy whatever. In other words, new stations are limited to 1,000 watts. They are granted

1,000 watts, if a wave length can be made available. Stations of high power are being maintained at the power they had when the board took control.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

Is it not quite clear that under the authority of the War Measures Act the government has power to-day to take over the two stations to which reference has been made, if, as and when it deems it desirable so to do?

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Mr. HOWE:

Oh, quite. So far as those two stations are concerned, we have the power, without spending any money at all, to stop them from being outlets for the two chains. The government believes, however, that its coverage to-day is satisfactory and it sees no difficulty about that situation.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
LIB

Donald Alexander McNiven

Liberal

Mr. McNIVEN:

Mr. Chairman, last Saturday and Sunday a number of members of the House of Commons enjoyed the hospitality of the city of Hamilton as guests, of the hon. member for Hamilton East (Mr. Ross). The hon. gentleman has for some time established a reputation for geniality and joviality, but a geniality and joviality with a fixed purpose, because the group which journeyed with him to Hamilton included representatives of the nine provinces and members of the Liberal, Conservative, and Cooperative Commonwealth Federation parties in this house.

In Hamilton we saw its peace-time industrial life; we saw and heard how Hamilton had converted and adapted its peace-time industrial life to the war effort. We saw Hamilton's war industry in action. We learned of its intricacies; we saw its magnitude; we observed its efficiency along a wide and varied front. The hon. gentleman whose guests we were has rendered a public service not only to the city of Hamilton but to the whole dominion in promoting a better relationship between central Canada and those of use who come

from distant parts of Canada, and also in according an opportunity to understand industry and its contribution to the war effort in these perilous times.

Those of us who were privileged to visit Hamilton have extended to the hon. gentleman our personal appreciation, and I am quite sure that those who were with that party would join with me in a public recognition of the opportunity thus accorded. The opportunity gave rise to less serious moments, for Hamiltonians are good entertainers, and on this occasion we had an opportunity of hearing from Mr. Black, president of the Otis-Fensom Elevator company; Mr. Myler, president of Canadian Westinghouse Limited; Mr. Morton, vice-president and general manager of the International Harvester company; Mr. Sherman, president of Dominion Steel and Foundry ; Mr. Maybury, representing the Firestone Tire company; Mr. Hart of the National Steel Car company; and Mr. Hilton, representing the Steel company of Canada.

Each of these gentlemen gave a brief outline of his particular industry and of what it was doing in connection with war work, and extended to the members of the House of Commons a warm and cordial invitation to come to the city of Hamilton and see for themselves what each of these respective industries was doing. That invitation was given in warmth and sincerity, and I would advise all those who are in the neighbourhood of Hamilton to take advantage of it.

One member of the party, not any of those to whom I have referred, suggested to me the adjournment of the House of Commons in order that our entire membership might see and observe for itself, a procedure, which, I believe, would serve to dispense with that paltry, petty, picayune criticism which, during the last three or four weeks, has characterized much of the debate on this resolution.

Shortly after our arrival in the city of Hamilton, our host arranged for us to visit the plant of the Canadian Westinghouse Company. That company first came to Canada in 1896, and started on an expansion programme in 1903, with the result that to-day its plants cover an area of fifty-three acres and has some 4,600 employees. They are now building a new plant, started some four months ago, which we were not privileged to see or go through, inasmuch as its purpose, devoted to the war effort, is shrouded in secrecy. We had an opportunity, however, of observing

War Appropriation Bill

plants in operation, and their domestic establishments where everything of an electrical nature is manufactured-irons, toasters, washing machines, refrigerators and many other household and ofrice conveniences. Radios are being made there; and as an instance of how this company has adapted itself to Canadian war requirements, we saw radio cabinets, hitherto made of imported wood, manufactured from Canadian elm, cabinets of which any home might well be proud.

On the commercial side we saw ignition switches being manufactured for motor cars; electric motors up to 7,000 horse-power. In 1903, when this company first embarked on this line, the height of their ambition was to manufacture an electric motor of 100 horsepower. In that plant, too, they are manufacturing air-brake equipment for locomotives, freight and passenger cars; also brake equipment for the electric cars used on our street railways, and brake equipment for motor cars.

In the power equipment plant we were privileged to see giant transformers up to a capacity of 50,000 k.v.a.; immense water wheel generators up to a capacity of 70,000 horsepower, being manufactured and turned out for the development of electrical energy in Canada. Dynamos, too, are constructed there. The activity of this plant takes on a new significance in the light of the Prime Minister's statement to this house this afternoon when a shortage of power was visualized even in the United States of America.

We saw, too, the manufacture of a plant which, as nearly as I can remember, was called an electric pot line. This electric pot line is essential to the mining of aluminium. These pot lines are being manufactured in large numbers and shipped to the aluminium mines on the Saguenay river in the province of Quebec. I learned that these electric pot lines were essential to the manufacture of aluminium and that, by their use, those engaged in that branch of mining were able to extract approximately fifty-eight pounds of aluminium from every ton of ore. The importance of this industry to the life of Canada can be visualized *when it is remembered that several thousand pounds of aluminium are required in the manufacture of every plane.

One interesting item which is being manufactured there and which we saw, was the bomb racks attached to aeroplanes for the holding of bombs and their subsequent release. They looked to me comparatively simple, about 51 feet long and 11 inches in width. They are required to carry a bomb weighing 1,000 pounds, and before those bomb racks are released from the plant they are subjected to a test of 4,000 pounds so as to make defi-

TMr. McNiven.]

nitely certain that they perform their intended function.

We also saw in progress the manufacture of miscellaneous war equipment and component parts for Canada's war effort. There is another phase of the Westinghouse production which I shall mention in a moment or two when I come to the plant of the Otis-Fensom Elevator company.

We next proceeded to the plant of Dominion Foundries. It was an eye-opener to many of us who are not accustomed to great industrial enterprise. There are great blast furnaces, together with batteries of crucibles and retorts for treating molten metal. We saw gun barrels sixteen to twrenty feet long, ten to twelve inches in diameter, sizes never before made in Canada. We saw a block of metal placed in huge retorts, heated, shaped and then put on a series of lathes from which it was turned into the shape which we ultimately saw. We then saw that barrel wrapped, ready for transfer to another plant, where it will be bored. May I emphasize, on the authority of those who conducted us through the plant, that never before in the history of Canada have gun barrels of this calibre, of this size, or practically of any size been made in the dominion.

In that same plant we saw armour plate up to 5i inches in thickness being made, and armour plate of 3 and 3J inches in thickness for the manufacture of tanks, for use in corvettes and other equipment, in process of being made. We were told, too, that never before in the history of Canada had armour plate of this type and of this thickness been made. That plate is shipped to the Angus shops in Montreal to be manufactured into tanks. We were told that certain sections of that metal were shipped to Yalcartier, where they were subjected to the most rigid tests in order that they should function as intended.

We saw, too, the smaller sizes being made, every sheet of which is tested in the plant of Dominion Foundries. They have built a gallery to which each section is taken and a machine gun is turned upon it. The gentleman in charge said that it was a most dangerous place to be, for the bullets ricocheted in all directions. However, not a sheet of this metal is accepted unless it has the imprint of a bullet upon it.

Next, we were taken to that portion of the plant utilized for the manufacture of tinplate. The tin-plate is cut to all sizes and used subsequently in the manufacture of metal containers. I do not know the extent to which heretofore tin-plate has been manufactured in Canada, but I do know that the facilities at the city of Hamilton have been

War Appropriation Bill

substantially increased in the plants of Dominion Foundries, and that the Steel company of Canada is opening, in the immediate future, a new plant for its manufacture. It was interesting at the end of the process to see a section of that tin-plate taken and tested for its tensile strength and also tested chemically in order to make sure that no injurious substances were contained in the metal itself.

Later in the afternoon we went to the plant of the Otis-Fensom Elevator company, which until recently was not engaged in war activities. They have just completed a new plant, the construction of which was started on November 15 last. It is partly occupied now and will be completely occupied in the immediate future. It covers 7J acres of ground and cost, I understand, somewhere around $5,000,000.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
LIB

Thomas Reid

Liberal

Mr. REID:

May I ask if the tin-plate is completely finished?

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
LIB

Donald Alexander McNiven

Liberal

Mr. McNIVEN:

As I understand it, the tin-plate is really steel rolled to a certain thickness, carried through a solution of tin, and then put on immense rolls, from where it is carried to various shearing machines, by which it is cut into sizes required by the manufacturer. We saw every step of that process.

In this new building we saw long rows of lathes of every kind and description, made, it seemed to me, in almost every city in both Canada and the United States. In that factory we saw the Bofors gun, which is, I understand, the most efficient and effective anti-aircraft gun yet made. We saw these gun barrels in their initial stages and processed from lathe to lathe until finally they came out a complete unit, boxed and ready for shipment to Great Britain. This was the most interesting part of our experience, inasmuch as we saw the boring of the Bofors gun, and observed how the gun was finally rifled in order to give it greater projectile strength. The Bofors gun shoots 120 2-pound shells a minute, and the life of the gun is exactly seven minutes; after that, its value is pretty much that of scrap.

I regret that the limitations which were placed upon us prevent me from giving figures of the production of the Bofors gun, but I can assure you, Mr. Chairman, from information we received, that the production, already quite substantial, will be doubled within the next few weeks and will progress steadily from that point until a maximum production is reached.

A few days ago, in glancing over the Ottawa Citizen, I noticed an item, "How Germany

Trains Her Workers." I quote one paragraph from that article, which is an excerpt from the Manchester Guardian:

The foundations of the German training system are four-week courses of intensive training. The trainees are first given a job (before training), and are paid during their training time at unskilled rates. After the four-week course they are taken over by the firms and further trained in the works. As much as possible of the training is done in the factories and as little as possible outside, in the technical institutes, Labour Front camps, and training courses.

I had no information that anything of that kind was being attempted at any of our Canadian factories, and it was a real thrill to have the Otis-Fensom people show us through their trade school. In fact, it was a part of their plant in which they took greater pride than in anything else. They established this trade school, and in reply to questions they said that they drew their recruits from likely applicants. They gave some preference to graduates of technical schools or the youth training movement, and found that these youngsters were more receptive to future training than those who came in completely uninitiated. It is a large school, and in order to have a training staff they sent three of their men to England to get the necessary technical instruction. These men are now instructing advanced pupils and the advanced pupils in turn will instruct others, so that from this school they expect to build up their personnel in order to carry on the work of that factory.

The same thing is being done in the Westinghouse plant. Certain girls are there now, being given definite technical instruction in the inspection and testing of the products of that plant.

We then went to the plant of the National Steel Car company. I was in that plant on the 23rd day of June last. The manager, Mr. Hart, informed me that four months before that date the site upon which that plant stood was a swamp. I could scarcely believe it; for I was in a building that was approximately 1,200 feet long and 400 feet wide, and it was equipped for the manufacture of 3-5 and 3-7 anti-aircraft shells. They were actually being turned out on the 23rd day of June. Mr. Hart told me on that occasion that they employed some 1,800 people in that plant and that they had little or no difficulty in getting the required number of employees. When I asked him from what source, he said that many of the people who were employed in the plant had not had any work for a couple of years. Many had been taken off the relief rolls of the city of Hamilton.

Going through that plant, we saw steel ingots put into the blast furnaces; we saw them brought to red heat; we saw them put

War Appropriation Bill

through the presses, progressing from one press to another, from one lathe to another, until finally the 3-5 or 3-7 anti-aircraft shell appeared on the inspection table ready for inspection and shipment.

The inspection completed, the shells are boxed in cardboard cartons, eight to the carton. Formerly these shells were shipped in wooden boxes at a cost of $2.50 each and took up twelve square feet of shipping space for their transhipment to the old land. Now the cardboard carton is used at a cost of 50 cents, with a corresponding saving in labour and shipping space. I am not able to give the quantity of shells being turned out in that plant. I mentioned having been in the plant on June 23, 1940, and I can say that the production on that date was quite substantial, and that on March 16 last, the production was seventeen times the figure which was given to me on June 23, 1940

The National Steel Car also manufactures steel freight and passenger cars; and when we remember the statements made in the last few days as to possible shortage of rolling stock, we may be grateful for the efficiency of the plant. It also turns out truck bodies and car frames. When I was there in June last, they were turning out 200 a day. On Sunday last, we saw long lines of freight cars loaded with truck bodies painted in familiar military colours, enabling the motor car industry to function with that efficiency which provided transportation for British troops in Libya and in certain other parts of Africa.

There were 1,800 employees in that plant in the month of June. There are many hundreds more employed at the present time, and I should like to pay a tribute to Mr. Hart, general manager of that company, who apparently is the hardest worker among his employees, for he is there day and night, at all times helping and encouraging.

As a result of my experience there and my observations of what was going on, I could not help being impressed with the fact that all our activities are inter-related and that all of us as individuals or groups are inter-dependent. The products of Canada, products of the land, the sea, the mine and the forest, are brought together, fused by the ingenuity and skill of man. We saw both in action, peace-time pursuit and war-time activity. My Hamilton experience has made me a better Canadian and has given me a greater appreciation of Canada's potentialities and resources, and still greater confidence, if that were possible, in the Minister of Munitions and Supply (Mr. Howe), the guiding genius, directing hand and correlating head of Canada's ministry of munitions.

May I in the time that remains to me make some remarks with regard to my own province of Saskatchewan. I know that as soon as I mention Saskatchewan, the popular mind immediately turns to wheat-thinks of the wheat farmer as the wheat miner who alternately spends his winters in Florida and on relief. Just in that regard I should like to emphasize that Saskatchewan does grow wheat. It grows the best wheat in the world, and has perfected mass production of that commodity.

I know also that the wheat surplus to-day is what the Minister of National Defence (Mr. Ralston) referred to the other day as a headache. But there have been and are great men in the world. The name of one man has come down in history as the result of an idea, generated 2,500 years ago, when Joseph decided to store corn in Egypt. As a result of his wisdom and foresight, the people of that day and generation were saved from starvation, and his prudence and foresight have been remembered all down the ages by the phrase, "There is corn in Egypt." I say to you there is corn in Saskatchewan, and that corn (wheat) will yet fulfil a useful function. Wheat was a factor in the last war. I heard Sir George Paish say two years ago that had it not been for the bountiful harvests of western Canada and the ability of the British navy to ensure its safe transportation, Great Britain would have been starved into submission in 1916 or, if not, in 1917. Wheat will yet be a factor in this war. Wheat will ultimately be a peacetime asset of great value, enabling Prime Minister Churchill to carry out his pledge to the people of the devastated parts of Europe that there will be food in abundance for all.

In the corridors of this building I sometimes hear Saskatchewan referred to as the problem province. May I say, however, that is heard only in the corridors of this building. We have had a long chain of agricultural disasters; rust, wind, grasshoppers, drought, low prices and many other things. But, great as these other problems are, the greatest with which we have had to contend and from which we suffer at the present moment, is the fact that by reason of the manner in which Canada's war effort is being conducted, there are a million people in Saskatchewan who have not been given an opportunity to pull their full weight in Canada's war effort. I submit that we have given abundant evidence of our willingness to pull that full weight, and that we deserve better treatment.

May I remind hon. members that Lieutenant-General McNaughton, commander of Canada's army, was born at Moosomin, Saskatchewan, and also that Saskatchewan citizens of every race and creed have enlisted

War Appropriation Bill

in Canada's armed forces. May I remind them also-and this was a surprise to the Minister of National Defence for Naval Services (Mr. Macdonald)-of the number of recruits for the navy who came from the prairie provinces, and, in particular, from Saskatchewan.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
LIB

Thomas Reid

Liberal

Mr. REID:

They are good sailors, too.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
LIB

Donald Alexander McNiven

Liberal

Mr. McNIYEN:

Exceedingly good sailors, as was proven by their experience on board the Fraser and the Margaree. On the Fraser, when it was rammed in the bay of Biscay, there were twenty-three sailors from Saskatchewan, many of them from the city of Regina. Two of those young lads, Donald Snelgrove and Ronald Young, were plunged into the bay of Biscay and swam around for an hour and ten minutes before being rescued. Taken to England, they were stationed on board a boat there, and it had to be moved because the jetty to which it was moored was bombed. A little later, a bomb lit on the right of the boat and, a few minutes later, one on the left. On leave in London, they were on the third floor of a seven-storey hotel, and a bomb came through to the fourth floor. They spent the day in helping the air-raid wardens and the relief department in carrying succour to those who were injured, and during that afternoon a thermite bomb fell on the street sufficiently close to bum the coat of one of those lads. In all of these experiences they escaped unhurt.

Later, they boarded the Margaree, and when she was sunk a few months ago, those two lads were the sole survivors of the Saskatchewan contingent on board that boat. The Saskatchewan boys had entered into a compact that those who survived would, on their return to Canada, visit the homes of those who were lost. Those two lads arrived back in Regina; and in order to carry out that compact, borrowed a car and visited the parents of the other twenty-one who were lost on board the Fraser and the Margaree and carried to those parents a message of sympathy in which we could all join. Singularly enough, on the way home a tire blew out and the car turned over three times. Once again the two lads emerged unhurt. Their reaction to these experiences was that if there is anything in that old story about the cat, they had still two lives coming to them. What an experience for boys not yet 19 years old!

Within the last few days, this city has been honoured by a visit from Wing Commander Ernest McNab, a son of Saskatchewan. I may remind hon. members that he is a son of the lieutenant-governor of Saskatchewan. He covered himself with glory, brought glory to Canada and to his native province, and carried

consternation and dismay to the enemy. In this city he was interviewed by the press but refused to talk of his personal exploits. He displayed a modesty which he learned at his mother's knee. He spoke of team work; that spirit he absorbed from the Saskatchewan atmosphere. That spirit is characteristic of the attitude of the people of Saskatchewan to-day; they desire to play their part and pull their weight with the other provinces of the dominion in order that this war may be speedily brought to a successful conclusion. In the armed services, Saskatchewan people have played their full part.

In Saskatchewan, national registration was accomplished in the three days set apart in August, and Regina, which I have the honour to represent, was one of the three constituencies in Canada which carried out national registration on a purely voluntary basis. Over forty thousand men and women were enrolled during those three days without the expenditure of a single dollar of public funds. We have also more than doubled our quota in every one of the war charity appeals of this dominion. In my own city in the last two campaigns the Red Cross succeeded in raising $90,000 in cash at a cost of less than $400.

The war savings certificates campaign has just been concluded. Our city has a recorded population of about 55,000 people, and of this population 15,025 men and women pledged themselves to make monthly contributions to Canada's war effort by the purchase of war savings certificates to a total of $825,000. This has all been accomplished from a sense of duty, and despite difficulties which in 1933 reduced our per capita income to $133, an income lower than the per capita of any other province. Happily, our income is double that to-day, but it is not from surplus income that these contributions are being made. The people of Saskatchewan realize their obligation and these accomplishments are only evidence of a willingness, a desire and an inclination to endure further sacrifices in order to do their part.

I should like to refer to the matter of military establishments. Yesterday the hon. Minister of National Defence put on Hansard a table showing the pay and allowances according to military districts. I do not think this table answers the question which I asked. The total to which I referred was $253 million, but the total of what he has given is not anywhere near that amount. From the figures that have been given, it will be noted that No. 12 military district, located in Saskatchewan, has a lower total of pay and allowances than any other district in the dominion. The military pay and allowances

War Appropriation Bill

for Canada in 1940 amounted to $183,122,000, which was distributed among the various provinces as follows:

Prince Edward Island $ 1,824,000

Nova Scotia 18,660,000

New Brunswick 8,772,000

Quebec 27,264,000

Ontario 74,064,000

Manitoba 17,760,000

Saskatchewan 9,552,000

Alberta 7,344,000

British Columbia 17,748,000

It may be inferred from these figures that Saskatchewan men have not been enlisting. What has happened is that Saskatchewan men have been transferred to other units and have been sent to other points for military training. I was really alarmed the other day when I heard the Minister of National Defence outline the plans for the formation of a tank corps and an armoured division. He stated that the training of these units would be carried on at Petawawa, Kingston, Listowel and Barriefield. Reference was made to Lord Strathcona's Horse, which, I believe, originated in the west but now is identified with the city of Listowel. It seems to me that the logical place to recruit an armoured division or a tank corps is in the prairie provinces. In Saskatchewan alone there are more than 47,000 tractors and over 7,000 combines in operation. Our men are experienced in driving tractors and combines; they are used to handling motors. Apparently, however, the whole outfit is to be recruited and trained in the central provinces. Once more we are being deprived of that to which I think we are entitled.

I contend that there should be a wider distribution of war industrial plants in Canada. As was said by the hon. member for Temis-couata (Mr. Pouliot) the other day, there is a possibility of invasion. Just recently, an editorial in one of the Ottawa papers commented upon this. It will be remembered that a year or two ago, the Hon. Doctor Manion referred to the possibility of bombing planes coming down through Hudson bay and James bay to bomb Toronto, Hamilton and other centres. On Sunday last, Mrs. Black, a former member of this house, referred to the possibility of this happening. If that is so, some of these industries should be established on the prairies which are a long distance removed from any such possibility.

I am not speaking in a spirit of jealousy or with a desire to have removed any plants which are located in eastern centres at the present time. I have, however, too much respect for the good people of Hamilton to wish to expose them to the danger of bombing should industrial plants continue to be concentrated there and in other centres. We

have no war industries in Saskatchewan. Just one small contract in Saskatoon for the manufacture of universal gun carriages.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
NAT

Karl Kenneth Homuth

National Government

Mr. HOMUTH:

Does the hon. member say that there are no war industries in

Saskatchewan?

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
LIB

Donald Alexander McNiven

Liberal

Mr. McNIVEN:

None at all.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
?

An hon. MEMBER:

Except wheat.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Mr. HOWE:

What about air training?

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
LIB

Donald Alexander McNiven

Liberal

Mr. McNIVEN:

Hon. members representing different provinces have outlined the war activities in their respective provinces. I

notice that British Columbia had, in 1940, a payroll of over $17,000,000. That province has varied industries. They supplied about three-quarters of the timber which was used in Canada's war effort during 1940, I believe a total of 374 million feet.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
LIB

Thomas Reid

Liberal

Mr. REID:

We provided a market for your wheat.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
LIB

Donald Alexander McNiven

Liberal

Mr. McNIVEN:

Of that immense total, only eight million feet was supplied by Saskatchewan.

I come now to the maritimes. The hon. member for Queens-Lunenburg (Mr. Kinley) gloried in the contribution which Nova Scotia was able to make. I read now that traffic is so heavy on the Atlantic portion of the Canadian National railways that there is practically no such thing as unemployment in that section. I understand that the war traffic required 258,000 freight cars, and that more than 7,500,000 tons of war materials have moved over the Atlantic division into the maritime provinces, creating on the Atlantic coast of Canada two of the greatest harbours on the north American continent.

I am not jealous of that, but I do desire most seriously that the people of Saskatchewan be given an opportunity to pull their full weight, and that some effort be made to develop our resources. Yes, Mr. Chairman, we have industries out there. We have resources, besides wheat; and if I had the time, I could speak for hours in telling you not of beauties and grandeur but of the resources of Saskatchewan which are not related in any way to the production of wheat. There are, however, certain things we need. More than $300,000,000 of public money have already been expended in subsidizing certain industries, building new plants in the eastern and other parts of Canada, and not a single dollar of that has been expended in Saskatchewan-with the exception of some airports.

When I first attended the university in Winnipeg some thirty-five years ago, that city was not as large as the city of Regina is

War Appropriation Bill

to-day. At that time Calgary was a mere dot on the map. To-day, both those cities have outstripped Regina, and largely because of power developed at Winnipeg and at Calgary, which has brought industry to their doors. Ours is not a well-balanced economy; and if we are going to place ourselves in a better position economically, we must have the development of a block of power. From where, do you say? My reply is that in southern Saskatchewan we have twenty billion tons of coal-yes, I said billions. It is lignite coal, true, but it is a better coal than the brown coal of Germany upon which that country must rely to-day. It is a better coal than the brown coal of Norway and Sweden which was used to develop the iron and steel industry of those countries. It is a coal with an overburden of from 40 to 150 feet. Right there to-day immense steam shovels are operating to remove that overburden and to mine the coal. After it is sized, it is placed on freight cars, all at a minimum of cost.

Already at the mouth of the mine there is an electric plant generating electric current, and distributing it over a limited area in southern Saskatchewan. A company has recently offered to build at the mine mouth a plant which will develop electrical energy at a price of six-tenths of one cent per kilowatt hour, delivered at Regina, 128 miles distant. I realize that power is essential, and feel that something could be done by the government of Canada to establish a war industry in that part of the country, thereby justifying the development of power at the coal mines in Saskatchewan.

In addition to that, there is at Fort a la Corne on the North Saskatchewan river, a hydro site which has been investigated and surveyed. All it lacks is capital for development. Then, there are at Lloydminster in northwestern Saskatchewan, gas and oil fields, which could be utilized for the development of a block of power.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
NAT

Karl Kenneth Homuth

National Government

Mr. HOMUTH:

Surely the development of power is a provincial matter?

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   WAR APPROPRIATION RILL
Sub-subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink

March 19, 1941