January 14, 1958

LABOUR CONDITIONS

FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS

PC

Francis Alvin George Hamilton (Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. Alvin Hamilton (Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources):

Mr. Speaker, I promised the other day to give some information to the house concerning various work projects for this winter. In regard to forest access roads we have had information from eight provinces, namely Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Ontario, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia.

All the provinces mentioned have expressed a direct interest in forest access roads and want more information as to how the program can be carried out. Nova Scotia has under way a program which would appear to be eligible for assistance. A representative from New Brunswick was in Ottawa on January 9 to discuss details. As hon. members may have heard the announcement over the radio on January 10, Premier Frost of Ontario has expressed his concurrence in the proposed program for forest access roads.

As to costs of the forest access program, Nova Scotia has forecast that it might be able to spend $100,000 on forest access roads; Saskatchewan, $325,000, and Alberta, $180,000. British Columbia has indicated it would be prepared to participate in a large way. In a few days' time we hope to have some information from the provinces of Ontario, New Brunswick and possibly Newfoundland. The federal share of these costs will be 50 per cent. I shall be pleased to keep the house informed of any further developments in this field.

Mr. Speaker, I should like to make the same sort of announcement concerning the campground-picnic area development announced at the beginning of the new year. Hon. members will be interested in hearing that letters have already been received from five provincial governments indicating an interest in the campground-picnic area program, and one other province has indicated that it will participate.

The province of British Columbia has indicated that it will spend an estimated 96698-208J

$360,000 between January 10 and March 31 and $400,000 in April and May, with half these amounts to be covered by federal contributions.

The province of Alberta has indicated that it expects to spend during the remainder of the present fiscal year an amount of $75,000, and a similar amount during the first two months of 1958-59. Half these amounts will be covered by federal contributions.

The premier of Saskatchewan has indicated his interest in the program and has asked his minister of travel and information and his minister of natural resources to study possible programs at once. The provinces of New Brunswick and Newfoundland have informed me that programs will be undertaken. In the case of New Brunswick discussions have already been held at the official level.

In addition to the written notification received from the five provinces mentioned, the premier of Ontario has publicly announced the interest of Ontario in participating in the program. Advice was kindly passed to my department at the official level before Premier Frost made his announcement.

I am sure hon. members will be pleased to hear of the excellent response already shown by provincial governments to the offer of federal assistance toward campground and picnic area programs.

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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LIB

Jean Lesage

Liberal

Hon. Jean Lesage (Monlmagny-L'Islel):

May I ask the minister whether, in respect of the government's participation in these programs, the contracts for works are awarded on a tender basis?

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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PC

Francis Alvin George Hamilton (Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hamilton (Qu'Appelle):

Mr. Speaker, in some instances, as in the province of Saskatchewan where they use their own public services to provide those roads, I think we shall have to take into consideration their local problems. I would hope that in our urgency to get this work program started immediately the house would not insist that we go through all the procedural processes that have to be gone through in calling tenders. I assure the house that wherever possible I shall ask the provinces-and I imagine they will agree-that if it does not interfere with their normal processes, the tender system be used.

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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LIB

Jean Lesage

Liberal

Mr. Lesage:

Does the minister not believe that the tender system should be used unless the work is done by the province's work force on a day basis?

Winter Employment Projects

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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PC

Francis Alvin George Hamilton (Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hamilton (Qu'Appelle):

I do not think I have to say much more than I have said, Mr. Speaker. I am primarily concerned with providing work immediately, and I know that in connection with the other part of my program in the parks we have had to use unorthodox methods in getting the work started. As a matter of fact it is starting and will be starting in most places tomorrow, and we have asked for tenders. Tenders have been asked for in an unorthodox manner, such as wiring as many people as we can. We have had to make some very quick decisions to get equipment ready for them, and I would hope that in the circumstances the house would consider the prior task that we are trying to complete of providing work immediately, and not hold me up too much by recourse to enforcement of the usual safety precautions.

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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LIB

Jean Lesage

Liberal

Mr. Lesage:

I have only one thing to say, and that is I have taken note of the admission of the minister that he is using unorthodox methods.

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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CCF

Alexander Malcolm Nicholson

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

Mr. A. M. Nicholson (Mackenzie):

I should like to ask the minister if he has been able to reach a decision with respect to whether the Flin Flon-Hanson lake-Prince Albert road, which passes through a forest area, is being included in the project.

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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PC

Francis Alvin George Hamilton (Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hamilton (Qu'Appelle):

All I have from the provinces is a statement of intention and of the rough amount they expect to spend. In the case of Saskatchewan we have not considered whether that road comes within their project. As a matter of fact I am not too much concerned, because as long as they provide something that meets the criteria we have laid down we will pay our half the costs if it provides the amount of work we are hoping to achieve through winter employment.

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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LIB

William James Henderson

Liberal

Mr. W. J. Henderson (Kingston):

Would the minister assure the house that this is not a preview of the 20-cent a day labour camps for the unemployed in the early thirties?

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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PC

Francis Alvin George Hamilton (Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hamilton (Qu'Appelle):

Mr. Speaker, I doubt whether this is in order on motions, but I should like to say in answer-

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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PC

Daniel Roland Michener (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Speaker:

Order.

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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PC

Francis Alvin George Hamilton (Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hamilton (Qu'Appelle):

-that we follow the recommendations of the Department of Labour.

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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PC

Daniel Roland Michener (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Speaker:

Order. The practice of the house when a statement has been made on motions is for only one speaker from each group to comment, and we have been around the circle now. Is there anything else under the heading of motions? Orders of the day.

On the orders of the day:

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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CCF

Hugh Alexander Bryson

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

Mr. H. A. Bryson (Humboldl-Melforl):

Mr. Speaker, I should like to address a question to the Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources arising out of the statement he made earlier today with regard to the forest road program. My question deals with the figures he placed on the record, being those that were proposed by the provinces involving the share of money they are prepared to put up as their part of the program. Are the figures arrived at by the provinces contingent on limitations imposed upon them by the federal government with regard to the amount of money the government is prepared to spend on this project; and will agreements be signed in time for spring operations to be started?

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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PC

Francis Alvin George Hamilton (Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hamilton (Qu'Appelle):

The answer is that the estimates submitted by some of the provinces were based on the amount of work they thought they could complete by the date suggested in my letter to them of January 2.

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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CCF

Hugh Alexander Bryson

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

Mr. Bryson:

Would the federal government be prepared to match any amount dollar for dollar?

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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PC

Francis Alvin George Hamilton (Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hamilton (Qu'Appelle):

We have not set any precise limit, but it is certainly obvious from the fact that we are in the winter season that only a certain amount of work can be done. I do not know what the final amount will come to. We have estimated roughly $1 million, which I think will about cover the program, but the amount may be higher or lower.

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   FURTHER STATEMENT ON WINTER EMPLOYMENT PROJECTS
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REQUEST FOR STATEMENT ON STEPS TO PROVIDE FULL EMPLOYMENT

January 14, 1958