June 23, 1944


Section agreed to. On section 5-Duties of the minister.


NAT

John Ritchie MacNicol

National Government

Mr. MacNICOL:

I have a few questions with regard to paragraph (a). Reference is made to employment in industry. My first question is: Does this refer to employment of men and women in industrial plants engaged in some way in the production of munitions, or does it refer to men and women in private plants not in any way engaged in producing munitions as coming under the minister's duty to provide employment?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ESTABLISHMENT OF DEPARTMENT TO FORMULATE AND CARRY OUT RECONSTRUCTION PLANS
Permalink
LIB

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

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

As I read the section it first of all emphasizes the importance of the minister giving his attention to the members of the armed forces and those who are engaged in war industries. That is the purpose of the section.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ESTABLISHMENT OF DEPARTMENT TO FORMULATE AND CARRY OUT RECONSTRUCTION PLANS
Permalink
NAT

John Ritchie MacNicol

National Government

Mr. MacNICOL:

Does that apply to plants not engaged in war work?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ESTABLISHMENT OF DEPARTMENT TO FORMULATE AND CARRY OUT RECONSTRUCTION PLANS
Permalink
LIB

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

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

That particular section does not apply to them, but the general purpose of the minister would be to seek to further full employment in industry generally. To that extent it is part of the minister's business to get as much information as he can that will help towards that end.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ESTABLISHMENT OF DEPARTMENT TO FORMULATE AND CARRY OUT RECONSTRUCTION PLANS
Permalink
NAT

John Ritchie MacNicol

National Government

Mr. MacNICOL:

Paragraph (c) of section 5 reads:

to formulate plans for industrial development and conversion. . . .

In carrying out his duties would the minister be able to initiate programmes such as obtained in England prior to the beginning of the war when the British government by regulation insisted on the necessity of fifty per cent British content in any goods imported into England for exportation to Europe, or any goods made in England for exportation to Europe. Would the minister have anything to do with making a regulation like that?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ESTABLISHMENT OF DEPARTMENT TO FORMULATE AND CARRY OUT RECONSTRUCTION PLANS
Permalink
LIB

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

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

I think that would be a matter of government policy as to the extent of assistance to be given to industry and the like. That would be a matter of policy to be settled by the government. The reference here is to formulating plans for industrial development and conversion. The emphasis is rather on the general policy of bringing forward different projects for new developments or civilian uses for war plants, with a view to having them carried out. There is nothing to prevent the minister from making a recommendation such as my hon. friend has mentioned, but the paragraph does not impose on the minister any obligation of the kind.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ESTABLISHMENT OF DEPARTMENT TO FORMULATE AND CARRY OUT RECONSTRUCTION PLANS
Permalink
NAT

John Ritchie MacNicol

National Government

Mr. MacNICOL:

That is a fair answer. The paragraph refers to formulating plans for industrial development. Would that enable the minister to surround himself with capable industrial advisers to inaugurate new lines of manufacturing by making a survey of what we now import with a view of ascertaining if some or all those lines could be manufactured in Canada?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ESTABLISHMENT OF DEPARTMENT TO FORMULATE AND CARRY OUT RECONSTRUCTION PLANS
Permalink
LIB

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

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

Yes. I think the next section answers my hon. friend's question as -to how he might go about it. The explanatory note refers to powers of the minister. The section reads:

The minister, to enable him to .perform the duties imposed upon him by this act, may: . . .

And then paragraph (e) is as follows:

inaugurate conferences of representatives of primary producers, industry, science and labour as well as representatives of dominion, provin-' cial and municipal authorities engaged or likely to engage in any reconstruction plan.

The minister can bring together any experts he believes will be helpful to him, whether they are individual experts or representatives of industry or officers of industrial establishments, and get their advice with relation to plans for industrial development.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ESTABLISHMENT OF DEPARTMENT TO FORMULATE AND CARRY OUT RECONSTRUCTION PLANS
Permalink
NAT

John Ritchie MacNicol

National Government

Mr. MacNICOL:

Under paragraph (c)

would the minister have power to consider and perhaps order, as a means of giving vast employment, the initiating of works such as a canal around the Fort Vermilion rapids on

Department of Reconstruction

the Peace river and again around the Fort Fitzgerald and Fort Smith rapids on the Slave river, since the elimination of those rapids would permit the free transportation of coal from Hudson Hope on the Peace river right down to Aklavik, and that Canadian coal could be used for the heating of the north country? Would he have the authority to initiate such works as that?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ESTABLISHMENT OF DEPARTMENT TO FORMULATE AND CARRY OUT RECONSTRUCTION PLANS
Permalink
LIB

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

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

My reply would be that undoubtedly the minister will welcome suggestions from all sources, and particularly from members of parliament, as to where it might be possible to further some national need or purpose by particular industrial or public works projects such as my hon. friend has mentioned. In the case mentioned by my hon. friend, if he were to speak to the minister himself, the minister would then, I assume, confer with the officials of the Department of Public Works, or the Department of Transport, or whatever departments are concerned, and would ask: "Has this project been considered? Here is a matter that ought to be looked into. If it is thought that that particular area is in need of development works, had we not better consider this among others?" I would not say that the minister would be able to get his way all the time, but certainly that would be one of the things which he would wish to bring to the attention of the departments concerned. In the light of the expenditures involved in the whole programme it might be necessary for the minister to weigh those different projects and come to the cabinet and say: "Here are so many. I would strongly recommend that we do a certain amount." He might not recommend the whole. The government policy as a whole would decide on how far it would be possible to go.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ESTABLISHMENT OF DEPARTMENT TO FORMULATE AND CARRY OUT RECONSTRUCTION PLANS
Permalink
NAT

John Ritchie MacNicol

National Government

Mr. MacNICOL:

I have in mind northern Alberta. I am not sure that the government of Alberta have assisted but I am sure they would. In northern Alberta there is a movement to develop the vast coal resources at Hudson Hope and to take them by water down the river. They could then come down as far as Peace River town with very little dredging in the river. The construction of the two canals I mentioned would permit them to take the coal right down to Aklavik at the mouth of the Mackenzie river where they certainly need coal and where coal now costs a tremendous sum of money, because it is taken from away to the south of Edmonton by rail up to Waterways and then on down from there another 1,661 miles. I certainly would strongly advise the new minister to consider that as a project. It would create

a lot of work and help open up that great country.

Section stands.

Progress reported1.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ESTABLISHMENT OF DEPARTMENT TO FORMULATE AND CARRY OUT RECONSTRUCTION PLANS
Permalink

At eleven o'clock the house adjourned, without question put, pursuant to standing order. Monday, June 26, 1944


June 23, 1944