December 13, 1962

PC

Rémi Paul (Deputy Chair of Committees of the Whole)

Progressive Conservative

The Deputy Chairman:

Order. I think the hon. member is now discussing the procedure with respect to divorce bills generally and I would ask him to come back to the bill we are at present studying in committee.

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NDP

Reid Scott

New Democratic Party

Mr. Scoit:

I will be very glad to do so. I have made the point I wanted to make, I will be glad to come back to the bill. When the brief that was before the other place 27507-3-167J

Divorce Bills

was first shown to me this afternoon by the hon. member for Timiskaming and he told me of his objections, I did not really think that the things he said could possibly be true. So prior to this hour arriving I had occasion to take the brief that was before the other place and to study it. I understand that this was not done in the miscellaneous private bills committee, but the hon. member for Timiskaming has raised a very grave charge to which any member of the bar in any jurisdiction would have to listen.

Let us consider what happened here, Mr. Chairman, because with all the interjections the committee may have lost sight of it. The plaintiff commenced the divorce action and her husband was served with the papers. He then went to a solicitor in Ottawa and filed a notice that he wished to contest the divorce. This was done on the 4th of May, 1961. This was then a contested divorce action. Just a month later a document is prepared and is signed by the defendant husband in which he withdraws his objection, changes his mind and says that he is now domiciled in Montreal whereas he had previously said that he had never been previously domiciled in Canada at all.

The really serious part of this matter, Mr. Chairman, is that the second document is a sworn document sworn by the secretary of the lawyer acting for the wife. There is no court anywhere in Canada that would permit this matter to go through. If in a normal court of law a contested divorce action suddenly becomes an uncontested divorce action, the judge immediately requires the plaintiff, the defendant and the lawyers to come and explain to him why all of a sudden a defended action has become an undefended action. This is just normal court procedure. But, Mr. Chairman, if a judge in any court in Canada saw that the notice withdrawing objection was sworn by the secretary of the lawyer acting for the plaintiff the matter woud likely be referred to the discipline committee of the local bar association.

There is no possibility of any court in Canada permitting a divorce of this kind to go through without a very serious investigation as to how these circumstances arose. Yet this bill was before members of the other place and was passed by them. It then went to a committee of our own house and was passed. I cast no reflection on the members of that committee because obviously they did not have the facts before them. The bill has now come back to the house. Had it not been for the industrious methods adopted by the hon. member for Timiskaming in looking into these divorce actions, taking his duty seriously and going into the evidence as we are all supposed to do, if we are going to

Divorce Bills

legislate on these matters, this very serious matter would never have come to our attention.

Now, Mr. Chairman, the other matter raised by the hon. member lor Timiskaming was that of domicile. Of course, he is quite right. There is no domicile here in the province of Quebec. The man was born in Warsaw, came to Canada for a little while and wandered around from place to place. Eventually, he ended up in Miami and from Miami he went to New York. He was served with the papers in New York, but not at the address at which he was supposed to be living, an address 17 blocks away. This may be a minor discrepancy in the papers, however. Certainly, Mr. Chairman, there is no domicile here at all. Perhaps we should not concern ourselves because, as the hon. member has said, we do not really have to care about domicile.

However, we are trying to point out that this bill before us has never really received the proper study and consideration to which it is entitled. The committee of the other place and the committee of this house, perhaps through no fault of their own, are just not in a position to give these matters the study they properly deserve. My hon. friend says we should not concern ourselves with points of law. However, we are forced to do so. We are put in the position of being judges when these matters come before us, and we must consider them in that capacity.

Before I sit down, I should like to inquire of the chairman of the committee on miscellaneous private bills if he is prepared to move a motion that this bill be referred back to that committee for further study. I would be glad if he would do so, otherwise I would do so.

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PC

J. Nicholas (Nick) Mandziuk

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Mandziuk:

I am sorry, Mr. Chairman, I did not hear the hon. member.

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NDP

Reid Scott

New Democratic Party

Mr. Scott:

I was saying that the chairman of the house committee was good enough to indicate earlier that, in view of the issues we have raised, he would be prepared to move that this bill be referred back to the miscellaneous private bills committee. I wanted to extend him the courtesy of doing that, rather than moving it myself.

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PC

J. Nicholas (Nick) Mandziuk

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Mandziuk:

I shall so move, Mr. Chairman.

The Depuiy Chairman: I believe that this committee should carry the bill and then before the bill is read a third time it will be in order to move an amendment to the effect that the bill be referred back to the

miscellaneous private bills committee. I think it is the desire of the committee to follow this procedure.

Clause 1 agreed to.

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Preamble agreed to. Title agreed to. Bill reported.


PC

Marcel Joseph Aimé Lambert (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Speaker:

When shall the bill be read a third time, now?

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NDP

Stanley Howard Knowles (N.D.P. House Leader; Whip of the N.D.P.)

New Democratic Party

Mr. Stanley Knowles (Winnipeg North Centre):

Obviously, Mr. Speaker, you cannot know what went on in committee of the whole. There was an undertaking that if this bill were proceeded with to third reading today, there would be a motion that it be not now read a third time but that it be referred back to the standing committee on miscellaneous private bills. I assume the hon. member for Marquette is going to make that motion.

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PC

J. Nicholas (Nick) Mandziuk

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Nicholas Mandziuk (Marqueiie):

That is quite right; I move that the bill be referred to the miscellaneous private bills committee, before receiving third reading.

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PC

Marcel Joseph Aimé Lambert (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Speaker:

I think the proper procedure would be for the hon. member for Marquette to move the third reading and then an amendment could be put by someone that the bill be referred back to the committee, pursuant to citation 416, I think it is.

Mr. Mandziuk thereupon moved the third reading of the bill.

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NDP

Reid Scott

New Democratic Party

Mr. Reid Scoit (Danforih):

I move:

That the bill be not now read the third time but that the said bill be referred to the standing committee on miscellaneous private bills for reconsideration.

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PC

Marcel Joseph Aimé Lambert (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Speaker:

I find some difficulty with the wording of the hon. member's amendment. I think the amendment should be that after the word "be" in the motion the following words be deleted and there be substituted therefor, "referred back to the miscellaneous private bills committee".

The hon. member for Danforth (Mr. Scott) moves, seconded by the hon. member for Timiskaming (Mr. Peters) in amendment:

That the bill be referred back to the miscellaneous private bills committee.

The question is on the amendment. Is it agreed?

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Amendment agreed to.


PC

Marcel Joseph Aimé Lambert (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Speaker:

Therefore, the main motion is now that the bill be referred back to the committee. Is it agreed?

Motion as amended agreed to.

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PC

Marcel Joseph Aimé Lambert (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Speaker:

In view of the fact that it is now one minute to six, I will call it six

o'clock. The hour appointed for consideration of private members' business having expired, the house will revert to the business that was interrupted at five o'clock.

(Translation):

The house in committee of supply, Mr. Paul in the chair.

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INTERIM SUPPLY


Resolved, that a sum not exceeding $330,089,511.93 being the aggregate of- (a) one twelfth of the total of the amounts of the items set forth in the revised estimates for the fiscal year ending March 31, 1963, laid before the House of Commons at the present session of parliament, except atomic energy item 5, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation item 5, finance items 45 and 50, forestry item 11, labour item 40, legislation items 30 and 35, mines and technical surveys items 30, 35, 40, 70, 80, 125 and 130, national defence item 70, national health and welfare item 25, northern affairs and national resources items 10, 45 and 90, public works items 5, 45, 70, 100, 105, 125, 145, 168, 170, 180, 190 and 200, Royal Canadian Mounted Police items 5, 15 and 25, transport items 35, 40, 60, 80, 85, 100, 125, 222 and 225, loans investments and advances item L20, $292,175,958; (b) an additional one twelfth of the amounts of defence production item 25, external affairs item 5, northern affairs and national resources item 105, of the said revised estimates, $1,842,041.67; (c) one twelfth of the total of the amounts of the items set forth in the supplementary estimates (A) for the fiscal year ending March 31, 1963, except external affairs item 112a, transport items 213a and 222a, $8,738,178.92; (d) ten twelfths of the total of the amounts of the items set forth in the supplementary estimates (B) for the fiscal year ending March 31, 1963, $27,333,333.34, be granted to Her Majesty on account of the present fiscal year ending March 31, 1963. At six o'clock the committee took recess. (Text): AFTER RECESS The committee resumed at 8 p.m.


NDP

Thomas Rodney Berger

New Democratic Party

Mr. Berger:

Mr. Chairman, when the committee rose I had been talking about the Columbia river treaty. I said that it was an improvident treaty. I said that it assigned to Canada the job of storing vast quantities of water while effectively depriving us of the right to use the waters of the Columbia, not only for the purpose of generating electric power but also for industrial and agricultural purposes. I said the treaty would stunt the agricultural and industrial development of British Columbia, and indeed of the prairie provinces, not just for years to come but for generations to come. I pointed out that under successive governments Canadians have given up control over their resources, over their minerals, over their oil, over their manufacturing industries, over their savings; and now

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this government proposes that Canadians should give up control over their water resources in an area, the Columbia river basin, occupying 40,000 square miles.

The government has already signed this treaty. It has not yet brought it before the House of Commons for ratification. We in the New Democratic party can assure the government that when it is brought before the House of Commons, unless the government makes out a case, which so far is lacking, to justify this treaty, a case which no member of the ministry so far during this parliament has made any attempt to adumbrate to the house, the members of this party will resist the treaty. There is no question about that.

Under the old Liberal government Canadians were simply hewers of wood and drawers of water. The old Liberal government was the government in power when Canadians gave up control over their key industries and key resources to United States interests. No one can say that things have not changed under the Conservative government. Our function under the Columbia river treaty is one of storage. We are going to store the water of the Columbia river basin, water which will be used for agricultural and industrial development in the United States. Under the Conservative government we have become hewers of wood and storers of water.

For too many years we in Canada have been giving up control over Canada itself. There is really no necessity, I suppose, to recapitulate to members of the committee what has happened. We no longer control our own oil; the United States does. We no longer control our own mineral resources; the United States does. We do not control any longer our automobile manufacturing industry; the United States does. We do not control our appliance industry; the United States does. We do not even control our own savings any more: the great financial institutions of this country, the mortgage companies, the insurance companies, the investment companies are under control of United States interests.

To a great extent this has happened by default. The old Liberal government, and the same is true of the present government, did nothing to encourage the generation of Canadian capital. They did nothing to expand Canadian ownership. They did nothing to discourage the acquisition of Canadian resources by United States interests.

It is true that these developments took place in the private sector of the economy.

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But in the case of the Columbia river treaty- which we contend is nothing more or less than a gigantic give-away of the control over the water of a whole river basin-there can be no excuse. The government is not dealing here with a development that has taken place in the private sector of the economy; the government is dealing here with a public resource. For the government to retain control over the water resources of the Columbia river basin would not entail any encroachment on private enterprise; it would not impair the right of businessmen, leaders of industry and the like, to carry on their operations as they saw fit. In this case it is a situation where the government has complete control and, in my submission, complete responsibility for what happens to the water resources of the Columbia river.

In this case this is what the government is doing: In the past Canadians, through the failure of previous governments to act, have given up control over their oil, their mineral resources, their agricultural resources, over resources of every type and variety. But this is the first time that we are actually giving up control over a whole river basin. This, I suggest, constitutes some kind of a record, a record of which this government should not be proud.

Let me tell the members of the committee what this treaty does. Let me inform the members of the committee why the members of the New Democratic party oppose this treaty. Let us take a look at the treaty. I have said that Canada's only function under this treaty is to build storage dams. That is mandatory under article II of the treaty. I notice that the Minister of Public Works has joined us this evening, and he may deal with this subject if he decides to defend the treaty, if he can. It is true that the treaty provides for the development of power at Mica creek. This is the one dam where there will be generating capacity developed in Canada. But because the treaty prevents us from diverting the waters of the Kootenay river into the Columbia river the potential generating capacity of the Mica creek dam is markedly reduced. I suggest it is unlikely that if this treaty is proceeded with the Mica creek dam will ever be built. Under the treaty, if there is any delay in building these storage dams and, I repeat it is mandatory that we build these dams-

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James Ross Fulton

Mr. Fulion:

Has the hon. member read the treaty? If he has, does he not admit that the treaty specifically gives us the right to divert the waters of the Kootenay river into the Columbia river in stages, should we wish to do so?

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NDP

Thomas Rodney Berger

New Democratic Party

Mr. Berger:

I have read the treaty. The minister will admit, I think, that we cannot achieve any substantial diversion until 60 years have passed.

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December 13, 1962