February 1, 1944

POWERS OP COMMITTEES


Right Hon. W. L. MACKENZIE KING (Prime Minister) moved: That the standing committees of this house shall severally be empowered to examine and inquire into all such matters and things as may be referred to them by the house and to report from time to time their observations and opinions thereon, with power to send for persons, papers and records. Motion agreed to.


RAILWAYS AND SHIPPING

APPOINTMENT OF COMMITTEE ON ACCOUNTS AND ESTIMATES OF GOVERNMENT-OWNED TRANSPORTATION LINES

LIB

Joseph Enoil Michaud (Minister of Transport)

Liberal

Hon. J. E. MICHAUD (Minister of Transport) moved:

That Standing Order 63 of the House of Commons, relating to the appointment of Standing Committees of the House, be amended by adding to the Standing Committees of the House for the present session a Standing Committee on Railways and Shipping owned, operated and controlled by the Government, to which will be referred accounts and estimates and (bills relating thereto of the Canadian National Railways, The Canadian National (West Indies) Steamships, and Trans-Canada Air Lines for the present session, for consideration and report to the House; provided however that nothing in the resolution shall ibe construed to curtail in any way the full right of discussion in Committee of Supply; and that the said Committee consist of: Messrs. Donnelly, Dubuc, Durocher, Emmerson, Ferland, Gray, Hanson (Skeena), Harris (Danforth), Hazen, Howden, Jackman, Lockhart, Michaud, McCulloch, Maybank. Nicholson. Parent, Pouliot, Roebuck. Ross (Middlesex East), Sanderson, Shaw, Sissons.

Topic:   RAILWAYS AND SHIPPING
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF COMMITTEE ON ACCOUNTS AND ESTIMATES OF GOVERNMENT-OWNED TRANSPORTATION LINES
Permalink

Motion agreed to.


REPORTS AND PAPERS

TABLING OF REGULATIONS-PENSIONS AND NATIONAL HEALTH AND WAR VETERANS' ALLOWANCES


Hon. IAN A. MACKENZIE (Minister of . Pensions and National Health): I wish to table two orders in council, one amending the regulations made under the Department of Pensions and National Health Act, and the other amending regulations with regard to allowances under the War Veterans' Allowance Act.


NAT

Gordon Graydon (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Mr. GRAYDON:

Has that anything to do with the north west field forces?

Topic:   REPORTS AND PAPERS
Subtopic:   TABLING OF REGULATIONS-PENSIONS AND NATIONAL HEALTH AND WAR VETERANS' ALLOWANCES
Permalink
LIB

Ian Alistair Mackenzie (Minister of Pensions and National Health)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE (Vancouver Centre):

No. One has to do with increases in allowances under the War Veterans' Allowance Act, and the other deals wdth allowances given to those who have been serving and are still under treatment. It provides in a word that they shall continue to have pay and allowances of the rank, with a ceiling of the rank of lieutenant, until treatment has been completed.

Topic:   REPORTS AND PAPERS
Subtopic:   TABLING OF REGULATIONS-PENSIONS AND NATIONAL HEALTH AND WAR VETERANS' ALLOWANCES
Permalink
NAT

Gordon Graydon (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Mr. GRAYDON:

I do not know how comprehensive this is, but many complaints have been registered by members generally with regard to the situation and I hope that this clears it up.

Topic:   REPORTS AND PAPERS
Subtopic:   TABLING OF REGULATIONS-PENSIONS AND NATIONAL HEALTH AND WAR VETERANS' ALLOWANCES
Permalink

SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON REVISION OF STANDING ORDERS

LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; Secretary of State for External Affairs; President of the Privy Council)

Liberal

Right Hon. W. L. MACKENZIE KING (Prime Minister) moved:

That a special committee consisting of Messrs. Black (Yukon), Fauteux, Golding, Hanson (York-Sunbury), Isnor, Mackenzie (Vancouver Centre), Maclnnis, Mcllraith, Maybank, St. Laurent and Queleh, be appointed to assist Mr. Speaker in revising the standing orders of the house with a view to simplify, accelerate and expedite its business, and to report to the house during the present session.

Standing Orders

Topic:   SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON REVISION OF STANDING ORDERS
Permalink
NAT

Gordon Graydon (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Mr. GORDON GRAYDON (Leader of the Opposition):

May I ask the Prime Minister if it is possible to have this committee sit at an early day in order that we may be able to do something in connection with the rules of procedure before the session ends?-I mean a considerable time before the session ends, because I do not want the committee to bring in its report at the end of the session and have a discussion on it drag on into another session.

Topic:   SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON REVISION OF STANDING ORDERS
Permalink
LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; Secretary of State for External Affairs; President of the Privy Council)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

May I say to my hon. friend that the purpose in having the motion introduced at this early stage of the session is that the committee may get to work just as soon as possible. I would hope that it might have some recommendation to make to the house in the course of a few weeks or days. Certainly there is every desire on the part of the government to have the committee report as quickly as possible.

Topic:   SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON REVISION OF STANDING ORDERS
Permalink
NAT

Gordon Graydon (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Mr. GRAYDON:

The sooner the better.

Topic:   SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON REVISION OF STANDING ORDERS
Permalink
LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; Secretary of State for External Affairs; President of the Privy Council)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

Yes, that is right.

Topic:   SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON REVISION OF STANDING ORDERS
Permalink
IND

Joseph Sasseville Roy

Independent

Mr. J. SASSEVILLE ROY (Gaspe):

Mr. Speaker, if I am within the. rules I should like to say a few words about the formation of this committee that the government proposes to establish. In his speech yesterday the Prime Minister spoke at some length and offered the suggestion that Wednesday sittings be done away with in order to give members the opportunity to do more work on committees, and also to give more time to the members of the cabinet to look after their very important work. What I want to know is this: how are the members who are not members of the committees to make the contribution they should like to make in order to help the administration of the country? On February 22 of last year I suggested that members from the province of Quebec opposing the government should be given places on those important committees, but my suggestion was turned down. If we are to take it for granted that the opposition should be represented on all committees that have to do with important matters affecting the country, then I suppose, according to the same principle, members from the province of Quebec who in this house are opposing the government should be given the opportunity to make their contribution and bring their views to those committees. Therefore, if my request is in order, I would ask that opposition members from the province of Quebec be nominated to the important committees that the government intends to establish before long.

Topic:   SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON REVISION OF STANDING ORDERS
Permalink
NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson

National Government

Hon. R. B. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

Mr. Speaker, I understand this motion is debatable, and I desire to say a word in reference to it. I had the honour of serving on a committee which in 1928 revised the rules of this house under the chairmanship of Mr. Speaker Lemieux, with the help, as a friend of the court, of the present Clerk of the House of Commons. We thought we had done a pretty good job at that time. I regret that the country as a whole, as I understand it, now thinks there were some grave errors and omissions in the work of that committee. I agree that as a result of the demand of public opinion the whole position should be reexamined, and I am glad that the Prime Minister has brought forward this motion.

I sympathize to some extent with the point of view of the hon. gentleman who has just spoken (Mr. Roy), but in connection with a matter of this kind I fear a large committee would not be as effective as a small one. I hope that while there may be some disadvantage-none is apparent to me, at all events-the Prime Minister will adhere to the principle of a small committee. I think it can do more effective and more continuous work than a large committee.

The position taken by the hon. member for Gaspe illustrates what is taking place in this house with a multiplicity of parties. We do not need to tell members of this house what difficult situations arise as a result, but such is democracy and- we have to meet it. At the same time a situation of this kind, which has to do with the internal economy of the house, makes it impossible to give representation to every political party that springs up ephemerally, and temporarily I hope, in this House of Commons. Therefore I am going to support the motion as put, in the hope that useful work will be done by this committee, but without any great 'hope that there will evolve any revolutionary departure from the rules; because after all this is the people's parliament, the high court of Canada, a deliberative assembly wherein the people's representatives meet to express the point of view of those who have sent -them here, and I strongly deprecate the curtailment of the right of free speech.

Topic:   SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON REVISION OF STANDING ORDERS
Permalink

February 1, 1944