March 19, 1952

LIB

William Alfred Robinson

Liberal

Mr. Robinson:

Does the hon. member advocate having those officials here?

Topic:   EDUCATION
Subtopic:   EQUALIZING OF OPPORTUNITY
Sub-subtopic:   ASSISTANCE TO PROVINCES
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PC

George Alexander Drew (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Drew:

I most certainly do not. That is exactly the point I am making. I have emphasized before that we do not want any additional branches started here. We have seen what happened in the case of the department of health. Health measures and hospitalization, except for military hospitals, were under the exclusive jurisdiction of the provinces. Little by little the dominion government have entered that field until now they have expanded their department of health to a point where, with publicity agents added, they have an organization that is incomparably larger that that to be found in any of the provinces.

Topic:   EDUCATION
Subtopic:   EQUALIZING OF OPPORTUNITY
Sub-subtopic:   ASSISTANCE TO PROVINCES
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CCF

Stanley Howard Knowles (Whip of the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation)

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

Mr. Knowles:

And still they have not brought in health insurance.

Topic:   EDUCATION
Subtopic:   EQUALIZING OF OPPORTUNITY
Sub-subtopic:   ASSISTANCE TO PROVINCES
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PC

George Alexander Drew (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Drew:

We do not want officials dealing with that, and unless we have those officials there is no place to which any minister of this government can go to get the necessary information except the place to which he should go, the department of education in the province. If he is going to do that, then let the government do the right thing in the first place and make the grants directly to the provincial governments or, on the other hand, provide the financial resources to the provinces which will make it unnecessary for the universities or schools to seek financial assistance outside of the department within the provincial government.

One of the reasons that I emphasize the importance of not getting into some new

department here under the guise of additional grants is the fact that even now a reading of some of the publicity releases would lead one to believe that the dominion government grants to universities are the main grants the universities are now receiving. Let us keep this in proportion. I for one supported and warmly supported the provision of $7,100,000 last year. I made it quite clear that I thought those grants should go directly to the departments of education. May I remind hon. members in this house that the Ontario government alone is providing $8 million in grants to the universities of Ontario, and over $60 million for education. Let us keep this in proportion, and keeping it in proportion let us realize that what has been granted so far may be useful and desirable assistance but is still only a small part of the money that is required by the universities of this country.

However, last year the dominion government did decide to make grants to assist universities. I do not know how, having done that, they can now come before this house and say they are unwilling to make grants in other fields because that would be trespassing on the constitutional responsibility of the provinces. After all, universities are just as exclusively under the jurisdiction of the provincial departments of education as any primary or secondary school.

Topic:   EDUCATION
Subtopic:   EQUALIZING OF OPPORTUNITY
Sub-subtopic:   ASSISTANCE TO PROVINCES
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?

Some hon. Members:

No, no.

Topic:   EDUCATION
Subtopic:   EQUALIZING OF OPPORTUNITY
Sub-subtopic:   ASSISTANCE TO PROVINCES
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PC

George Alexander Drew (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Drew:

By saying they are not, hon. members are simply demonstrating the fact that they do not understand the constitutional division of responsibility within this country. They are emphasizing the very strong reason why, over and over again, it is necessary for us to repeat what the actual division of constitutional responsibility is in these other fields.

Topic:   EDUCATION
Subtopic:   EQUALIZING OF OPPORTUNITY
Sub-subtopic:   ASSISTANCE TO PROVINCES
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SC

Solon Earl Low

Social Credit

Mr. Low:

Maybe it is the triumph of hope over experience.

Topic:   EDUCATION
Subtopic:   EQUALIZING OF OPPORTUNITY
Sub-subtopic:   ASSISTANCE TO PROVINCES
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LIB

Emmett Andrew McCusker (Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of National Health and Welfare)

Liberal

Mr. McCusker:

What about McGill university? It is not under provincial command?

Topic:   EDUCATION
Subtopic:   EQUALIZING OF OPPORTUNITY
Sub-subtopic:   ASSISTANCE TO PROVINCES
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PC

George Alexander Drew (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Drew:

In every province the universities are under the jurisdiction of the provincial authorities, to whatever extent they come under government responsibility at all.

Topic:   EDUCATION
Subtopic:   EQUALIZING OF OPPORTUNITY
Sub-subtopic:   ASSISTANCE TO PROVINCES
Permalink
LIB

Emmett Andrew McCusker (Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of National Health and Welfare)

Liberal

Mr. McCusker:

Now that is a different song.

Topic:   EDUCATION
Subtopic:   EQUALIZING OF OPPORTUNITY
Sub-subtopic:   ASSISTANCE TO PROVINCES
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PC

George Alexander Drew (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Drew:

I am not going to be diverted by these silly interruptions. It is not a different thing. Neither this government nor any provincial government has ever taken it upon itself to run universities. They have assisted universities, and I hope that no hon. member in this house will ever suggest that we are going to have universities run from the department of education in the 55704-39

Education

province, as provincial universities in that sense. I hope that even by the indirect devices which are being employed we are never going to have the universities under the direct responsibility of this government or any succeeding government in the dominion of Canada.

What I am simply seeking to point out is this. We are dealing with a subject which calls for attention. Whether it be by grants such as were made in support of the universities or whether it be by other methods, the one thing that is absolutely necessary, unless we are going to be headed for serious trouble in this country, is that the financial resources be made available to our schools- our primary schools, our secondary schools, our technical schools and the universities- so that every child in Canada may have the chance to get the education for which his brains qualify him.

I said that there were different methods; but the method that I prefer-and I have indicated that for a long time-is for the dominion government to get out of the tax fields that they invaded and to let the provinces have the tax resources that will permit them to raise the taxes for the things they are called upon to do. This dominion government today is a trespasser in the field of provincial taxes. They have not carried out their promise to vacate the tax fields they entered during the war, and they are doing nothing to make it possible for new arrangements to be made on a satisfactory basis.

Topic:   EDUCATION
Subtopic:   EQUALIZING OF OPPORTUNITY
Sub-subtopic:   ASSISTANCE TO PROVINCES
Permalink
LIB

Jean Lesage (Parliamentary Assistant to the Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. Lesage:

Name the tax fields.

Topic:   EDUCATION
Subtopic:   EQUALIZING OF OPPORTUNITY
Sub-subtopic:   ASSISTANCE TO PROVINCES
Permalink
PC

George Alexander Drew (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Drew:

Mr. Speaker, I am assuming that any hon. member of this house who is qualified to sit in this house knows the tax fields that they have invaded.

Topic:   EDUCATION
Subtopic:   EQUALIZING OF OPPORTUNITY
Sub-subtopic:   ASSISTANCE TO PROVINCES
Permalink
LIB

Jean Lesage (Parliamentary Assistant to the Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. Lesage:

But you know that you are skating on thin ice.

Topic:   EDUCATION
Subtopic:   EQUALIZING OF OPPORTUNITY
Sub-subtopic:   ASSISTANCE TO PROVINCES
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PC

George Alexander Drew (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Drew:

Mr. Speaker, I am not skating on thin ice. I am dealing with a subject that has been discussed with the most complete frankness on this and on many other occasions. Let me point out one of the reasons why we are now faced with the necessity for early action in this matter. The estimates tabled today indicate that the dominion government is going to raise $600 million more in the coming year than in the year gone by. The taxes of this country are going to be increased by $600 million. That makes it more difficult for the provinces to meet their requirements. It makes it absolutely impossible for most if not all the provinces to find those additional moneys that are necessary today in order to deal with

Education

the question of education. That is something that must be clearly in the mind of every hon. member.

May I also point out that when we are confronted with a $600 million increase in taxation in Canada for the coming year, we realize that this increase is being made at a time when the provincial governments have been asking for assistance in many fields in which it has not yet been given, and that the $600 million increase does nothing to meet those demands. That is the reason why I suggest that the motion now before us can properly be taken simply as a request that this government recognize the need for facing this problem at this time, that it stop evading its responsibilities, and that it call the provinces together in a real dominion-provincial conference and try to find a basis for the adjustment of taxation which will give to the provincial governments that measure of taxing power which they have a right to expect if they are to carry out their responsibilities.

After all, we have seen that problems have been raised by the methods that were employed in making the grants to the universities last year. It is only within the last few days that a statement has been made that arrangements are expected soon, between the

dominion government and the government of the province of Quebec, which will make it possible for the grants to be made to the universities of that province. We do not want any repetition of that difficulty in any future attempt to solve this urgent need.

In this whole problem it seems to me that the time has come to recognize that the inability of the provinces to meet the need for increased payments for education is simply an incident of the continued and deliberate evasion by the dominion government of its solemn obligation to vacate those tax fields it entered during the last war and to find some satisfactory basis of taxation which will give to the provincial governments not only financial capacity to meet their requirements but the real responsibility for those things which are exclusively within their field.

Mr. Speaker, may I call it six o'clock?

Topic:   EDUCATION
Subtopic:   EQUALIZING OF OPPORTUNITY
Sub-subtopic:   ASSISTANCE TO PROVINCES
Permalink

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

LIB

James Joseph McCann (Minister of National Revenue)

Liberal

Mr. McCann:

In the absence of the house leader, I wish to announce the business for tomorrow. According to standing order 15, we will deal with public bills and orders.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
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At six o'clock the house adjourned, without question put, pursuant to standing order.



Thursday, March 20, 1952


March 19, 1952