April 11, 1945

WATERVILLE, N.S., EMERGENCY LANDING FIELD

NAT

Mr. BLACK (Yukon):

National Government

1. What is the total cost of property secured for the emergency landing field at Waterville, Nova Scotia?

2. What are the names and addresses of the persons from whom such property was purchased, stating the acreage secured and the amount paid for each property or asked for same?

3. Have final payments been made, and, if not, what claims are outstanding?

4. What have been the costs of improvements and to whom have payments been made?

5. What are the estimated costs to complete?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   WATERVILLE, N.S., EMERGENCY LANDING FIELD
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LIB

Mr. CHEVRIER: (Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

1. $27,990.

2. See statement hereto attached.

3. All payments have been made.

4. Payments made to various small suppliers and for work done by departmental forces

$ 9,172 91

Payments to Municipal Spraying and Contracting Company for field development $145,400 78 $154,573 69

5. All work contemplated has been completed at a cost of $182,563.69.

Questions

Details re property purchased for -landing

field at Waterville, NS.: Address-Name Area Amount

Cambridge Station-

H. & I. M. Best .. 9-6 S 480W. Duncanson .. 2-5 75J. F, Durno .. 49-8 2,084B. B. Forsyth .. 1-0 2,565W. G. Forsyth .. 11-3 6,314J. F. Foster .. 68-9 7,000R. A. Illsley .. 5-2 429J. L. McDow .. 0-5 990Mrs. L. H. Pineo ... .. 6-4 176A. Reece .. 31-2 857Maude Reece .. 49-2 1,875Helen Reeves .. 4-2 210C. E. Saunders .. 0-3 35L. Timmins .. 8-0 1,715Mrs. E. M. Webster .. 34-0 1,600J. T. Webster .. 2-0 100Cornwallis- R. H. Ward .. 0-5 1,485$27,990

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   WATERVILLE, N.S., EMERGENCY LANDING FIELD
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DEPARTMENT OF RECONSTRUCTION-HOUSING

?

Thomas Miller Bell

Mr. COLDWELL:

1 Has the civil service commission established the position of director of housing, or some similar position, in the department of reconstruction?

2. What housing activities, or authority, has been vested in the department of reconstruction?

3. What position, if any, has J. M. Pigott held, or does he now hold, with the department of reconstruction?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   DEPARTMENT OF RECONSTRUCTION-HOUSING
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LIB

Lionel Chevrier (Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Mr. CHEVRIER:

A position was established by the Civil Service Commission of Director General of Housing Development, Department of Reconstruction, and Mr. J. M. Pigott, by order in council P.C. 114/9151, dated December 6, 1944, was appointed to fill that position at no salary. Mr. Pigott, however, has never acted in this capacity and the order in council will be rescinded.

By agreement with the Minister of Finance, direct responsibility for housing will remain with his department. Activities of the Department of Reconstruction will be confined to * assisting the finance department and by stimulating housing construction.

Mr. Pigott is unpaid President of Wartime Housing Limited, a crown company responsible for building temporary housing for war workers. Wartime Housing Limited is, of course, at the service of other departments of government to meet emergent situations.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   DEPARTMENT OF RECONSTRUCTION-HOUSING
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QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS

EDMONTON AIRCRAFT REPAIR PLANT

CCF

Mr. COLDWELL:

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

1. What disposition is to be made of the aircraft repair plant at Edmonton, Alberta?

2. Is there an optional purchase or other contract covering this plant? If so, what are the terms?

3. Could not this plant be used for the retraining of discharged service men?

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS
Subtopic:   EDMONTON AIRCRAFT REPAIR PLANT
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WHITEHORSE RADIO STATION

NAT

George Black

National Government

Mr. BLACK (Yukon):

Will the government of Canada acquire the radio broadcasting station established at Whitehorse, Yukon, by the American army, when that army- withdraws from Yukon?

Topic:   WHITEHORSE RADIO STATION
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MOTION FOR PAPERS

RADIO BROADCASTING-FRENCH LANGUAGE STATIONS

PC

John George Diefenbaker

Progressive Conservative

Mr. DIEFENBAKER:

For a copy of all correspondence and other documents that have passed between May, 1944, and date hereof, between the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation or any official thereof and the Minister of National War Services, referring to or connected with, the application or applications that have been made for the establishment of French-language radio stations at St. Boniface, Manitoba; Prince Albert, Saskatchewan: Gravelbourg, Saskatchewan, and Edmonton, Alberta.

Topic:   MOTION FOR PAPERS
Subtopic:   RADIO BROADCASTING-FRENCH LANGUAGE STATIONS
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BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

EXPEDITING THE WORK OF THE SESSION- SUGGESTED MORNING SITTINGS


On the orders of the day:


NAT

Gordon Graydon (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Mr. GORDON GRAYDON (Leader of the Opposition):

I wonder if I might make a brief statement with respect to the business of the house. This is perhaps a more appropriate time than on motions.

During the discussion prior to orders of the day on Monday, the Prime Minister indicated eagerness to have the present session cease- its activities as soon as possible. To that proposal I attempted to place before parliament the unfair position in which the government's failure to call parliament at the proper time had placed the official opposition and other hon. members in the house who desire an orderly and regular conduct of the nation's business in time of war. I indicated at the time that the proposal of the Prime Minister would be considered by my followers and myself and that in due course we would make known our decision in the light of what we thought was in the national interest.

Business of the House

There is little real justification actually, in the light of what has taken place since last January, for asking parliament to pull in its belt a notch and prematurely cut off discussion. The failure of the government to call parliament when it should have been called last January lies at the bottom of the whole problem. The language and tone of the Prime Minister's remarks on Monday are said to have been construed by some as meaning that he might adjourn, prorogue or dissolve the house before the war appropriations and civil supply bills are through. In that connection I desire to point out that this party is plainly on record in this debate, that so far as we are concerned the war appropriation bill and the supply bill must be passed. I can scarcely believe that the Prime Minister would by adjournment, prorogation or dissolution, do anything to prevent the passage of his own government's war appropriation bill or the legislation respecting supply while there is still time to pass them. It would be a national catastrophe for either the government to decide or any other group to prevent the voting of the money needed to carry on the war and the civil government. We caution the government or any other group against incurring that heavy responsibility; if they do, it will be theirs alone. We are therefore prepared, Mr. Speaker, to sit in morning sessions from now on, and on Saturday of this week if necessary in order to clear up the order paper and to make it possible to obtain royal assent to all of the legislation before the end of the week. We feel that this offer of practical cooperation will meet with a similar cooperative response from the Prime Minister and the government.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
Subtopic:   EXPEDITING THE WORK OF THE SESSION- SUGGESTED MORNING SITTINGS
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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):

Mr. Speaker, may I say

just a word to my hon. friend. I was naturally pleased to hear him say that his party did not intend to prevent supply from being voted or the necessary appropriations made for the conduct of the war. He said that he was making the statement he has just made because my remarks of a day of two ago, on Monday, I think it was, were being construed as meaning that I might possibly have parliament dissolved before the effluxion of time by the constitution. May I relieve my hon. friend's mind immediately about any summary dissolution of parliament. If the business of parliament is not concluded before midnight on Monday of next week, this parliament will be dissolved because it has run the full limit of its time. I have at no time had any thought or intention of recommending dissolution with a view of shutting off

discussion in the house. As a matter of fact hon. members well know that the sole reason the government has continued up to the last, or almost the last day of the term of parliament before going to the people, has been our desire to avoid a general election while the war was still in progress. This government would have gone to the people a year or more ago had we been considering our immediate political fortunes rather than what was owing to the men who are fighting Canada's battles at the front.

When Monday night comes I will have the satisfaction at midnight of realizing that I have been faithful to the mandate received from the day on which the people of Canada charged this government as a Liberal government with the duty of carrying on Canada's war effort. Hon. members will recall that there was before the country at the time of the last general elections not merely the Liberal party, the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation and the Social Credit party, but also a party known as a National Government party, which was the Conservative party under another name. The National Government party was defeated at the polls and the Liberal party was returned, while the war was on, by an overwhelming majority. I have felt that the people having themselves stated that they did not wish to have a national government, but wished to have a Liberal government direct the conduct of the war, it was a trust given to us which we should carry out, and my colleagues and I have acted accordingly. As I say, I shall be very happy indeed when Monday night comes to realize that during all the difficulties of this period of the war we have maintained that trust, and that at no time in the whole period have we done other than seek to make the war effort of Canada as effective as it could possibly be made. We have not failed to ask the house for any appropriations that we believed the navy, the army or the air force required, or for what was needed by the forces in the way of munitions and supplies, food and the like. We have not hesitated to ask this parliament to grant what was necessary and I am happy to say that parliament has given us its support to that end.

What has been done in the prosecution of the war, as I have said over and over again, has been done by the people of Canada themselves with the government acting as their agent in carrying out what it believed to be the wishes of the people. During the last two years, when my own party had thought it advisable that we should not be confronted with obstacles at the last minute, or that we

Business of the House

should not wait longer than some other governments of the commonwealth have waited before appealing to the people, I could see the political advantage that might be gained in having an election, but I took the position very firmly that, while the men were fighting at the front, we should not, if it was possible to avoid it, have an election brought on at a time when they would not be free to discuss the issues with as much calm and regard for their own future as was desirable. This was the case, for example, at the time when we adjourned last August and could have immediately presented our programme of social reform to the people.

There have been other occasions when an election might have been politically advantageous, occasions that are well known to all hon. members of the house, but I have said, no, each time with only one limitation, which was that I would not ask parliament to deprive the people of the rights which they have under the constitution of saying what government was to carry on in Canada for the next five years. I said repeatedly I would not ask for an extension of the time of parliament and thereby deprive the people of their right to say whom they wished to have administer the country's affairs over the next five years. I have been true to that trust. I have held, as I say, firmly to the position that if we reached the time when the five years were up, we would go to the people as soon thereafter as possible. And that position has been maintained. Happily we have now come to the time when I believe we can say, in the words of the Commander-in-Chief, General Eisenhower, that German resistance has been crushed on the western front. I do not think it will be very long before German resistance on the eastern front and throughout the whole of Germany will be effectively ended. Therefore there is strong reason to believe that what we have tried our utmost to secure to Canada's fighting men will be secured to them, namely, that they will have achieved victory before they are obliged to consider the issues of a general election.

No one can say the war may not run a little bit longer than some at the moment anticipate. I shall be very greatly surprised if, before the San Francisco conference is concluded, as I said in a recent broadcast, the war in Europe will not have been officially declared to have been brought to a victorious close. We shall then have achieved what has been one of the great purposes of this administration, namely, to carry through Canada's part in this great war along the line of a total effort and that right up to the last hour afforded us by the constitution so to do. By delaying an appeal

to the people until it was required by the constitution, we have secured to our fighting men like opportunities to those which other citizens of Canada will have of studying the questions that will be of most importance to their future. Therefore my hon. friend or any other member of the house need not be in the least concerned about the intention of the government to dissolve this parliament prior to the time at which the constitution makes it necessary unless the house itself should decide to .get through with its business before that time.

Now I come to the question as to whether parliament should have been called earlier. Parliament has had five full sessions. It was adjourned early last December, and hon. members expected to meet again on January 31. When parliament adjourned on December 7 I said to my colleagues that, while we could not be sure when the war would end, obviously it was desirable for us to have a general election before the victory loan campaign came' on, if the war ended or the decisive battles had been fought soon enough that we could feel that we were taking no chances that the men at the front would not have the opportunities I have just mentioned. Had the decisive battles been fought in the month of December, as was expected by many, or in January or February, as others thought, this house would have been dissolved at that time and the election campaign would have been concluding at about this time. I canvassed the situation carefully with the national war finance committee, to ascertain if they could not move back a little the date of the seventh victory loan to enable us to await somewhat longer the outcome in Europe before dissolving, if we were to have the election before the victory loan campaign took place. But I was told that it might prejudice the loan very greatly if any change were made in what had come to be the customary date. Reasons were given to me wdiich I thought were sound, and, in those circumstances, naturally the government felt that it was our duty to the war effort of the country that no steps should be taken by us which would prejudice that all-important aspect of our war effort. So, as I say, if it had been possible to get the election over before the victory loan campaign, the election would have been over.

Then why was parliament called? The calling of parliament was planned for the simple reason that in the event of its being impossible to have the appeal to the people before the victory loan campaign, it was felt we should bring the house into session to see if some progress might not be made particularly in

Business of the House

relation to the war appropriations, so as to leave that much less for the next House of Commons to undertake in the way of passing needed appropriations. It was not intended to deal with all the business of a new session, for that belongs to the new parliament that will come into existence after the general election. We had the assurance, by a two-thirds majority, that this house would aid the government in a vigorous war effort. With that assurance in mind, within two days after parliament adjourned on December 7, an effort was made to arrange to have the Minister of National Defence in his seat when the house next met should it be be found possible and advisable that another session, however short, should be held. It was felt desirable that the minister should be here, since the subject we would take up first would be the war appropriations; and we sought immediately to obtain a seat for the minister. It was not possible to bring the house together earlier, because to carry out an election under our legislation as it stands to-day, even a by-election*, requires at least two months from the time the writ is issued until it is returned. As I say, with the assurance that we would have the vigorous support of the house in our war effort, we assumed, I shall take it entirely upon myself and say I assumed, at a time of war that every hon. member of the house would appreciate a motive of the kind, and that no opposition would be offered which would make it impossible for the Minister of National Defence to be in the* House of Commons to assist in getting through the estimates that might be necessary.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
Subtopic:   EXPEDITING THE WORK OF THE SESSION- SUGGESTED MORNING SITTINGS
Permalink
?

Some hon. MEMBERS:

Oh, o'h.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
Subtopic:   EXPEDITING THE WORK OF THE SESSION- SUGGESTED MORNING SITTINGS
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April 11, 1945