October 18, 1945

LIB

Ernest Bertrand (Postmaster General)

Liberal

Hon. ERNEST BERTRAND (Postmaster General):

I wish to make a statement in connection with the rates and weight limits of parcels being sent to England and on the continent.

In the course of the past few weeks, I have answered questions on the subject. Letters in regard thereto have been received by some of my colleagues and myself, and open letters, which unfortunately did not put facts in their true light, have been sent to newspapers. It is hoped that this further statement will clear up the matter.

Shortly after the end of the war in Europe attempts were made to restore mail service, particularly parcel post services to European countries, and it has been found possible to resume the mail service for correspondence to most places, but the parcel post services are another matter and they have presented many difficulties arising out of factors entirely out of Canadian postal authorities' control.

As the house knows, shipping facilities are not always of the best, and the question of the ability of the country of destination to provide delivery has been found to be the main difficulty. We have been successful in resuming the parcel post services to England (up to a weight limit of five pounds), to Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Sweden and Switzerland up to eleven pounds, and to Italy and the Vatican City state up to four pounds for gift parcels containing food, drugs, toilet articles and used clothing.

This has required constant effort, as in all cases, with the exception of one, the Netherlands, our parcel post services are at present operating through Great Britain, who are sorely pressed as regards staff and accommodation but have been most cooperative in assisting us to the greatest degree possible. The shipping situation from the United Kingdom also comes into the picture, but we are sure they are placing all facilities possible at our disposal. The fact that England has set a weight limit of five pounds and is transmitting parcels to the continent up to a weight limit of eleven pounds shows her willingness to help devastated countries.

As regards the question of parcel post rates, the parcel post service to the Netherlands, which I previously stated operates on the direct route without going through England, is, of course, the cheapest service. On all eleven pound parcels to the Netherlands, the rate is SI.60; to France it is $2.25; to Switzerland $2.10; to Belgium $2.05, and to Sweden $2.60.

Taxation

Parcel postal rates from Canada to other *countries are based on the charges due to the *country of destination and any intermediary *countries, when it is found necessary to route the parcels through those countries. Also on the amount due Canada for handling and transportation by railway in Canada, including the conveyance across the Atlantic at 75 cents per cubic foot, which is the same for any parcel going to continental Europe, except the Netherlands.

In the case of those countries in Europe to which it has been possible to resume parcel post services, it has been found1 necessary to route the parcels through England. Direct steamship services will be used as soon as they become available and when we are assured of proper accommodation and regularity of service.

Our main efforts, of course, have been directed to the reopening of these various parcel post services to those countries in Europe who have so greatly suffered during the war, and which would permit some measure of relief being sent to them by civilians in Canada. It is quite true that in some cases the rates might be considered a trifle high, but it is purely a question of what we have to pay other countries for handling in addition to the cost of the conveyance in Canada and transatlantic dispatch to Europe.

Complaints have also been lodged as to the delivery of parcels, a number of which have not reached their destination. This is absolutely beyond our control. All parcels were sent in good condition from Canada and with the least possible delay. While we are following up these matters with diligence, we cannot press the receiving countries to change their own regulations.

Topic:   POSTAL SERVICE
Subtopic:   PARCELS TO GREAT BRITAIN-WEIGHT LIMITATIONS
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PC

Thomas Ashmore Kidd

Progressive Conservative

Mr. KIDD:

Before we leave this statement of the Postmaster General, I should like to refer to a question I submitted to him in writing a few moments ago. It is as follows:

Will the minister kindly inform the house whether immediate steps can be taken to speed un the regulations to permit ten pound parcels sf food or clothing to be sent from Canada to Great Britain, the same as applies to civilians in continental Europe?

I intended to ask this question, and I thank the minister for his lengthy reply.

Topic:   POSTAL SERVICE
Subtopic:   PARCELS TO GREAT BRITAIN-WEIGHT LIMITATIONS
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TAXATION

STATEMENT AS TO TABLING OF REPORT OF ROYAL COMMISSION ON COOPERATIVES


On the order for motions: Hon. L. S. ST. LAURENT (Acting Minister of Finance): Yesterday the leader of the opposition (Mr. Bracken) inquired about the tabling of the report of the royal commission on the taxation of cooperatives. With the scanty information I had been able to obtain over the telephone I told him that it had not yet been received from the printer and that it would be tabled as soon as it was received. The leader of the opposition then said, as reported at page 1210 of Hansard: Would it not be possible for some of us on this side to see that report before we proceed with the budget debate? It may not be possible to make it available to every member of the house before the budget debate, but I think that before important speeches are made on the budget we should have the opportunity of seeing that report. To that I replied: I think that the request made by the hon. leader of the opposition is quite fair. I will communicate with the officers of the department and see if there are not copies that could be made available to the hon. member and to such other members as may wish to see it, rinless of course, I am assured that the report will be available in print almost at once. The leader of the opposition had said that the Minister of Finance- had referred to this report in his budget speech; and I felt that if it had been used by the Minister of Finance it would be only fair that it should also be available to other members who might wish to take part in the same debate. But on further inquiry I found that all that the Minister of Finance said with respect to it is to be found at page 1008 of Hansard, and it is as follows: The second royal commission was directed to report on the taxation of cooperatives. Its report has been received only very recently and it is now being printed for tabling in the house and distribution. There has not as yet been time to give full study to the report but, if it is possible to do so, I shall introduce in the committee on ways and means further resolutions for such changes in taxation as seem desirable after consideration of the recommendations of this commission. I also inquired about the report itself, and I found that only two copies had been received by the government from the commission. Apart from the briefs, evidence and other material collected by the commission, the report consists of 417 pages. The preamble is a matter of 14 pages; the main part of the report 107 pages. Then there are appendices and charts, original work made and submitted by the commissioners on their responsibility, making up in all 417 pages. One of the copies was sent at once to the king's printer to be printed. He has been communicated with, and we have been informed that if he were to attempt to do the work in the king's printer office it would be a matter of some months before he could get around to it because of the pressure of the daily printing he has to do Questions while parliament is in session; and it has been farmed out to a contractor. It is hoped that within three or four weeks it may be available. The other copy which was submitted to the President of the Privy Council was referred, without being examined at all, to the Minister of Finance, and is now in the hands of the experts of the Department of Finance who are preparing memoranda in connection with it for submission to the Minister of Finance. Under these conditions I cannot take the responsibility of taking it away from the experts and making it available for discussion in the debate. It could not be discussed in the debate in the budget without being tabled. I can assure hon. members that everything is being done that can be done to expedite its preparation, but, as Acting Minister of Finance I would not take the responsibility of taking it away from the experts to whom the Minister of Finance referred it for the preparation of memoranda for his use in bringing those recommendations before his colleagues, and making it available to other members of the house. I regret that circumstances are such that I cannot have copies available for hon. members, who I know are, like many others, much interested in ascertaining what are the recommendations in this report.


QUESTIONS


(Questions answered orally are indicated by an asterisk.) special depreciation allowances


LIB

James Joseph McCann (Minister of National Revenue; Minister of National War Services)

Liberal

Mr. McCANN:

I desire to answer this question orally. The answer to the first part is, none. The answer to the second part is, answered by No. 1. I recognize that this is not a satisfactory answer, but it is technically a correct answer to the question as we understand it. If the questions were drafted a little differently, however, we could give the information requested by the hon. gentleman. The first question would then be in this form:

Since November 10, 1944, under order in council P.C. 8640 of that date, how many certificates have been granted by the Minister ol Reconstruction for depreciation allowances under section 6 (1) (n) (ii) of the Income War Tax Act?

The second question would be:

What is the total amount of depreciation to be allowed under the said certificates on the assumption that the construction in respect of

which the certificate was requested is carried out according to the plan submitted and within the prescribed period?

The answer to the first question is, 1,159; the answer to the second question is $157,956,313.07. If that answer is satisfactory to the hon. gentleman who put the question I will table it together with a copy of the order in council under which that comes into effect.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
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LABOUR EXIT PERMITS-EMPLOYMENT OF WOODSMEN IN UNITED STATES

PC

Mr. FLEMING:

Progressive Conservative

1. How many labour exit permits were granted to men to take employment in the woods in the northeastern states of the United States of America, (a) in 1944; (b) in 1945 to date?

2. What is the maximum number of such permits which may be granted for such purpose, and will this maximum be increased?

3. Within what area of Canada have American timber operators been permitted to canvass or advertise for Canadian labour, (a) in 1944; (b) in 1945?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   LABOUR EXIT PERMITS-EMPLOYMENT OF WOODSMEN IN UNITED STATES
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LIB

Mr. MITCHELL: (Minister of Labour)

Liberal

1. The number of labour exit permits granted to men to take employment in the woods in the northeastern states of the United States of America was: (a) In 1944-12,902; (b) In 1945 to date 16,447.

Since more than one labour exit permit may be issued to any one man during any one year it is necessary to state that in 1944 the maximum number of Canadians working on woods operations in the United States with labour exit permits at any one time was 4,993. In 1945, this figure is 4,616.

2. The maximum number of such permits which may be granted for such purpose is 5,060. It is proposed to increase this number to 5,750.

3. American timber operators have been permitted to canvass for Canadian labour in the provinces of New Brunswick and Quebec in both 1944 and 1945. None have been permitted to advertise.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   LABOUR EXIT PERMITS-EMPLOYMENT OF WOODSMEN IN UNITED STATES
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WAR ASSETS

CCF

Mr. McCULLOUGH (Assiniboia):

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

1. How many corvettes have been declared surplus and handed over to the War Assets Corporation for disposal?

2. What has been the cost of each corvette?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   WAR ASSETS
Sub-subtopic:   CORVETTES
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LIB

Mr. McILRAITH: (Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Reconstruction)

Liberal

1. 87.

2. 30 corvettes at $958,160 each; 7 corvettes at $780,296 each; 4 corvettes at $718,120 each; 46 corvettes at $690,000 each.

Questions

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   WAR ASSETS
Sub-subtopic:   CORVETTES
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UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE-SASKATCHEWAN

CCF

Frank Eric Jaenicke

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

Mr. JAENICKE:

Did any of the following persons receive unemployment benefits under the Unemployment Insurance Act during the year 1944, and, if so, how much did each of them receive: P. C. Colquhoun, Maple Creek, Sask.; C. Dixon, Luseland, Sask.; H. P. Kruesel, Kerrobert, Sask.; F. Lang, Tramping Lake, Sask.; J. T. Letourneau, Lisieux, Sask.; G. N. Morrison, Eastend, Sask.; A. R. Porter, Truax, Sask.; A. L. Rees, Stranraer, Sask.; G. Slade, Sceptre, Sask.?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE-SASKATCHEWAN
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LIB

Humphrey Mitchell (Minister of Labour)

Liberal

Mr. MITCHELL:

I am not sure that the information requested should be put on the records of the House of Commons, for very-practical reasons. In the first place, there are

2,500,000 people insured under this plan, and if we are to have the proceedings of the house cluttered up with this kind of thing I do not know where it is going to end. I think also there is another principle which enters into it, which I am sure my hon. friend will see if he looks at this matter from the point of view of the workingman or woman. Pride is a very necessary element in our relations with each other, and these people do not like to have any benefits received under this or any other plan bandied about. However, I should be

glad to give my hon. friend the information privately or make it available to him if that should be necessary.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE-SASKATCHEWAN
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CCF

Frank Eric Jaenicke

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

Mr. JAENICKE:

That is satisfactory.

volunteers FOR ACTIVE SERVICE REMAINING IN CANADA

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE-SASKATCHEWAN
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IND

Mr. GAGNON:

Independent

1. How many volunteers who enlisted for

active service remained in Canada, in the various war service offices: (a) army; (b)

navy; (c) air force?

2. How many of such volunteers were Frenchspeaking?

3. How many of such volunteers were Englishspeaking?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE-SASKATCHEWAN
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October 18, 1945