March 22, 1962

LIB

Maurice Bourget

Liberal

Mr. Bourgel:

Can the parliamentary secretary tell us what is the price of concentrate per pound? Is the price mentioned in the contract?

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PC

Edmund Leverett Morris (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Morris:

The item in the supplemen-taries, $2,400,000, is intended to cover 342,000 pounds.

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LIB
PC

Edmund Leverett Morris (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Morris:

Yes.

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Item agreed to.


PC

Paul Raymond Martineau (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Progressive Conservative

The Chairman:

Department of Transport, vote No. 663.

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORT Railway and steamship services-

663. Construction or acquisition of auto-ferry vessels and equipment as listed in the details of the estimates, provided that treasury board may increase or decrease the amount within the vote to be expended upon individual listed projects- further amount required, $71,885.

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LIB

John Whitney Pickersgill

Liberal

Mr. Pickersgill:

I am sure the minister would like to tell us what this is all about. We always like to hear from the minister.

Supply-Transport

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PC

Léon Balcer (Minister of Transport)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Balcer:

Mr. Chairman, this vote deals with the Pelee island ferry. The vote is in the amount of $46,860 for general alterations and additions to the ferry vessel Pelee Islander operating between Pelee island and the mainland in Ontario; and the remainder, $25,025 for modifications to the ferry vessel Lord Selkirk operating between Wood Island, Prince Edward Island, and Caribou, Nova Scotia. The remainder, namely $25,025, is for modifications to the ferry vessel Lord Selkirk operating between Wood Island, P.E.I. and Caribou, Nova Scotia.

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LIB

Maurice Bourget

Liberal

Mr. Bourgel:

Can the minister tell us whether those contracts were allocated or whether they were given to the companies after tenders had been obtained in both cases?

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PC

Léon Balcer (Minister of Transport)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Balcer:

As far as the Lord Selkirk is concerned, the alterations and modifications were done at Pictou, Nova Scotia. Unfortunately, I have not here the information to tell me whether it is an allocation or whether it was done by tender. However, my recollection is that both jobs were allocated.

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LIB

John Whitney Pickersgill

Liberal

Mr. Pickersgill:

I wonder whether I could ask the minister this question; I appreciate the fact that it is perhaps not strictly relevant to the repairs to the Lord Selkirk. However, is the department giving any consideration to putting a new ferry on the Wood Island-Caribou service? As the minister very well knows, the service is quite inadequate, having regard to the demand for it at the present time. There is a great deal of agitation to have improvement in that service.

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PC

Léon Balcer (Minister of Transport)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Balcer:

Yes, Mr. Chairman. A second ship for this service has been approved in principle by treasury board.

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LIB

John Whitney Pickersgill

Liberal

Mr. Pickersgill:

Does the minister think the contract is likely to be let quite soon so that it might perhaps be ready for the season of 1963?

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PC

Léon Balcer (Minister of Transport)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Balcer:

Yes.

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Item agreed to. Air transport board- 664. Subventions for air carriers as detailed in the estimates, $300,000.


LIB

John Whitney Pickersgill

Liberal

Mr. Pickersgill:

I think perhaps the minister would wish to give some explanation of this item.

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PC

Léon Balcer (Minister of Transport)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Balcer:

This $300,000 is a subsidy. It represents monthly subsidies of $25,000 being paid at the present time to Pacific Western Airlines covering operating losses on the prairie route on which are Edmonton, North Battleford, Prince Albert, Saskatoon and Regina. The committee might recall that this service was carried on for a long time by

Supply-Transport

Canadian Pacific Airlines and then was turned over to Pacific Western Airlines, One of the main sources of revenue was a mail contract. Unfortunately, this mail contract was terminated. I do not remember the exact date of its termination, but it was some time in 1960. As this route was not a money producing route with the loss of this mail contract, the company was faced with a rather large deficit. The company was obliged to withdraw from the service or to suspend the service. However, as in this area the service was considered to be essential and as no other air line was ready to carry on that service, the air transport board decided to give this subsidy of $25,000 a month. This subsidy is going to be paid until the air transport board makes its report on the prairie milk run route. This report should be made within a couple of months. As you know, Mr. Chairman, the air transport board has made a complete survey of all the regional carrier operations all across Canada starting with the eastern provinces. The last hearings were held a few weeks ago in the prairie provinces. Until this report on the prairie run is received, it is the intention to carry on paying the $25,000 a month to Pacific Western Airlines.

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LIB

John Whitney Pickersgill

Liberal

Mr. Pickersgill:

I suppose it would be considered a vicious attack to suggest that there was any connection whatsoever between the subsidy and the fact that this air line serves Prince Albert. I therefore would not think of drawing attention to that fact. But speaking seriously may I say this. As Your Honour is well aware, the question of the milk run in western Canada to which the minister refers and with which, as he pointed out, this matter is directly connected, is one on which I know my friend the hon. member for Lau-rier has a few observations he wishes to make. However, unfortunately because of an indisposition-

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PC

Gordon Minto Churchill (Minister of Veterans Affairs; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Progressive Conservative Party House Leader)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Churchill:

Is he politicking?

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LIB

John Whitney Pickersgill

Liberal

Mr. Pickersgill:

No, he is not politicking. I wish he were but in fact he is not. Owing to an indisposition he was unable to be here today, but I hope he will be here tomorrow. I know he has one or two observations he wanted to make on this matter. As it appears to be ten o'clock, Mr. Chairman, perhaps we could pause at this point.

Item stands.

Resolutions adopted in committee of supply this day reported and concurred in.

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March 22, 1962