June 7, 1972

TABLING OF FOURTH REPORT OF CLERK OF PETITIONS

IND

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Independent

Mr. Speaker:

I have the honour to inform the House that the Clerk of the House has laid upon the table the fourth report of the Clerk of Petitions.

The report was then read by the Clerk, as follows:

Fourth Report of the Clerk of Petitions Wednesday, June 7,1972.

The Clerk of Petitions has the honour to report that he has examined the petition of Herman Weisz, of the City of Ottawa, Ontario, in relation to a report entitled "Concentration in the Manufacturing Industries of Canada", dated March 31, 1971 and published by the Queen's Printer for Canada on behalf of the Department of Consumer and Corporate Affairs, presented by Mr. Andrew Brewin, Member of Parliament, on Tuesday, June 6, 1972, and finds that the petition meets the requirements of the Standing Orders as to form.

Respectfully submitted,

Fernand Despatie,

Clerk of Petitions.

Topic:   TABLING OF FOURTH REPORT OF CLERK OF PETITIONS
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PETITION OF HERMAN WEISZ-RULING BY MR. SPEAKER

IND

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Independent

Mr. Speaker:

The House has just heard the Clerk read the fourth report of the Clerk of Petitions in relation to the petition filed yesterday by the hon. member for Greenwood. Since the filing of the petition yesterday, I have had an opportunity to study very carefully the contents and substance of that document. The substance of the petition is that the petitioner who was a public servant was largely the author of a report entitled "Concentration in the Manufacturing Industries of Canada" published by the Department of Consumer and Corporate Affairs. This report was attributed to be the work of a public servant, not the petitioner, under the direction of yet another public servant, also not the petitioner.

The suggestion is that it was wrong, and inaccurate in failing to give the petitioner credit for his part in the publication, thereby damaging his reputation. The petitioner urges the House of Commons to cause the person or persons responsible for the alleged wrongful appropriation of his work to publish a correction and to give him credit for his part in the publication.

Hon. members will recognize that it is a heavy responsibility of the Chair to ensure that petitions are in accordance with the historic practices and usages of the House. There is a fundamental right to petition the House of Commons, but that right should not be used to put aside other and probably more effective remedies. It is my understanding that there is an avenue open to the petitioner which has not been referred to in his statement of grievances. There is a precedent in the year 1956 to the

effect that the House will not receive a petition dealing with a matter, the jurisdiction of which has been assigned to another body. This precedent may be found at page 163 of the Journals of the House for Thursday, February 16, 1956.1 quote from the Journals of the House:

Mr. Speaker decided that, although the abovementioned petition met the requirements of Standing Order 70-

Now Standing Order 67.

-it was irregular in that it did not set forth a case in which the House had jurisdiction to interfere since Parliament had vested in the Governor in Council and in the Minister of Transport the exclusive authority to approve and issue licences for the operation of private television stations, and that the petition could not be received.

The Chair has other reservations concerning the substance and the language of the petition filed by the hon. member yesterday. The document, in my estimation-and I say this after much serious thought and consideration- is more in the nature of a remonstrance or a listing of grievances rather than a petition as it is understood by our usages and practices. Included in the substance of the purported petition are statements which, in my opinion, are charges of a very strong character against a minister and a senior departmental official.

As the House knows, assuming a petition to be acceptable from a procedural standpoint, further discussion or consideration of it may be carried out only by consent. We have to go back to the year 1962 for an instance where such unanimous consent was given to allow a debate in the House followed by a referral of the matter to a committee. Perhaps I might be allowed at this point to refer to Dawson's Procedure in the Canadian House of Commons, page 242, dealing with modern practice in relation to petitions:

These rulings and the procedure surrounding the reception of petitions have acted, in recent years in particular, to discouraging petitioning. At many times the House has shown itself willing to waive its rules, however strict, to allow the introduction or the passage of a measure it desires, but it has consistently refused to do the same with petitions. Not only is the possible subject-matter limited today, but the forms are strictly observed. The examination by the Clerk of Petitions ensures that many petitions will never be received by the House. Even if they are drafted properly and deal with a proper subject, the petitions cause little stir in the House: the Speaker informs the House that they may be received and they disappear from sight without comment. At best a member may present a petition in person and read the prayer; his fellow members nod agreeably and the petition disappears; there is no debate. The result of these restrictions and this procedure is that petitions are of little use today. Petitions for private bills are still common, but the old tradition by which an individual could pray for redress of wrongs and expect an alleviation of difficulties has fallen into disuse. It is unlikely ever to be revived.

In light of what I have read and said I wonder whether hon. members would not agree that, if allegations con-

June 7, 1972

Regional Economic Expansion

tained in a document were allowed to be inserted into our records, another possible injustice would be created.

I might refer hon. members to Citation 333 of Beau-chesne's Fourth Edition in reference to the use of language in a petition.

For the reasons stated, I feel that the document filed yesterday is not a petition which meets the requirements of the practices and usages of the Canadian House of Commons covering the receipt of petitions. With regret, because I know the matter is perhaps of interest to members, and certainly to the hon. member for Greenwood, I suggest that the matter cannot be brought to the attention of the House by way of petition. The hon. member knows as well as I that there are other ways a grievance can be submitted to the House. There are many avenues open to the hon. member if he wishes to pursue the matter, but I suggest, with regret, that the avenue of a petition is not the proper one at this time.

Topic:   PETITION OF HERMAN WEISZ-RULING BY MR. SPEAKER
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ROUTINE PROCEEDINGS

REGIONAL ECONOMIC EXPANSION

LIB

Jean Marchand (Minister of Regional Economic Expansion)

Liberal

Hon. lean Marchand (Minister of Regional Economic Expansion):

Mr. Speaker, I should like to inform the House that, following consultations with the provincial governments, the Governor in Council has decided that regions now designated for purposes of the Regional Development Incentives Act should continue to be designated for an additional period of 12 or 18 months.

Regions designated in August, 1969, for a period ending July 1, 1972, will continue to be designated for a further period of 18 months, that is, until December 31, 1973. These regions include all of the Atlantic provinces except Labrador, all of eastern and parts of northwestern Quebec, part of northern Ontario, southern Manitoba, parts of southern and northeastern Saskatchewan, southern Alberta, and southeastern British Columbia. Regina, Saskatoon and Renfrew-Pembroke will also continue, until December 31, 1973, to be designated as special areas for purposes of industrial incentives.

Regions designated in January 1971 for a period ending July 1, 1972, will continue to be designated for a further period of 12 months-that is, until July 1, 1973. These regions include southwestern Quebec and parts of eastern Ontario.

By July 1972, current designations will have been in existence for somewhat less than three years. Six to nine months were required to bring the program into fullscale operation and, during the initial two years of the program, manufacturing investment, activity, in Canada as in many other countries, was at a relatively low level. As a result, experience under the regional development incentives program is only now becoming sufficient to permit meaningful evaluation. Intensive work to that end, and to

review related aspects of the regional economic expansion program, is underway and will be followed by a process of thorough consultation with each of the provincial governments. The decision to continue existing designations will provide the time needed to complete this process.

Topic:   ROUTINE PROCEEDINGS
Subtopic:   REGIONAL ECONOMIC EXPANSION
Sub-subtopic:   ANNOUNCEMENT OF CONTINUANCE OF PRESENT DESIGNATED REGIONS FOR FURTHER PERIOD
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PC

James Aloysius McGrath

Progressive Conservative

Mr. James A. McGrath (St. John's East):

Mr. Speaker, first of all I wish to thank the minister for extending the usual courtesy by providing an advance copy of his statement. Second, I should like to say we particularly welcome the announcement contained in the minister's statement that he is at long last undertaking an evaluation of the whole regional development program. This has been suggested many times in the House during the past two to three years. It has been suggested by the Canadian Council on Rural Development and by others as well. I can only say we hope that when this review is completed it will be made public to allow for critical and, if you like, independent analysis of that evaluation.

The minister's statement extending the term of all designated regions until December 31, 1973, really comes as no great surprise. We are, however, a little surprised at the brevity of the minister's statement; we are surprised that he said so little. In fact, we expected that he would take advantage of this opportunity on motions to respond to some of the criticisms that have been levelled at the program both inside and outside the House. Having said that, I readily admit that the minister has done a commendable job before the Standing Committee on Regional Development in his many appearances during the course of examination of his estimates. But that is not quite the same as making a statement of policy on motions in the House and giving the opposition parties a chance to reply for the record.

I had hoped that rather than continue to scatter public funds under the Regional Development Incentives Act in this ad hoc fashion across half the populated area of Canada, the minister would have shown greater selectivity and hence a greater appreciation of the regionally disadvantaged areas of the country. In our view it is not reasonable to suppose that development of viable secondary industries can be promoted in each and every one of the population centres across the vast area of the designated regions in this country which are found in every province in the land. In each of the designated regions there are centres which have a potential for the growth of secondary industry. It is in these centres that the incentive program should, in our view, be concentrated. This concentration can be done through the mechanics of industrial complexes, if you like, similar to the new Multiplex Corporation which is now under way in Saint John, New Brunswick, and which we feel hold the ultimate promise for the success of regional development in this country. However, this blunderbuss approach of the minister in fact defeats the purpose of the program by lavishly extending the designated regions right across the country.

We had hoped that the minister would take advantage of this procedure in the House to reply to the genuine reservations and concern that we have over the effects that the budgetary provisions with respect to capital

June 7, 1972

write-off and accelerated depreciation will have on grants under the Regional Development Incentives Act. The Atlantic Provinces Economic Council has indicated that in its view the accelerated write-off and capital depreciation provisions in the new budget will in fact dilute the effects of the Regional Development Incentives Act. Questions in this regard were directed to the minister in the House and to the Minister of Finance, but members have not been able to extract any assurances to the contrary. I have also been advised that the Atlantic Development Council, which answers to the minister, has this important matter under study.

May I say in conclusion that we regret that the minister has not revised the whole designated area concept and its application right across the country because we believe this defeats the very purpose of the government's policy to end regional disparity in this country.

Topic:   ROUTINE PROCEEDINGS
Subtopic:   REGIONAL ECONOMIC EXPANSION
Sub-subtopic:   ANNOUNCEMENT OF CONTINUANCE OF PRESENT DESIGNATED REGIONS FOR FURTHER PERIOD
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NDP

John Stratford Burton

New Democratic Party

Mr. lohn Burton (Regina East):

Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the minister for supplying a copy of his remarks to opposition spokesmen ahead of time. The first statement made by the minister is not true. He said,

. . . following consultations with the provincial governments, the Governor in Council has decided that regions now designated . . . should continue . . .

The cabinet made a decision on March 30 to continue the present basic designated regions to the end of 1973. The present designated regions were established in mid-1969 and have been in effect for almost three years. The government provided for a review by setting the June 30 expiry date this year. But now we are told there is to be no change. This is evidence that the program has failed. There is great disappointment and there will be great disappointment, particularly among the provinces, that there has been no change in content or in boundaries. The sum of $250 million has already been committed, much of it still to be spent, and the commitments are accelerating, but we have business as usual for the next 18 months.

In addition, there is no change in policy with regard to grants to foreign-controiled firms. I think we might have expected some change associated with Bill C-201. Why should any foreign-controlled firm want to take over a Canadian enterprise when it can get this type of industrial incentive grant to expand its present operations or to set up a new operation in Canada? In addition, they have over half the country to choose from when picking a location. The government should also note that Ontario is doing away with its program of forgiveable loans to foreign-controlled firms because the loans are doing no good.

A great deal of study was given to this program by the committee. There are many problems in its administration, but the minister has allowed the program to be used for short-run objectives. An evaluation program has not been developed even though the minister said last year that they were starting such a program. It is urgently needed now.

A Montreal Star editorial in the June 6 issue pointed out the following:

The program, then, is ripe for a thorough reassessment. It is too expensive, and the needs for regional development are too pressing for policies to be taken on faith.

Regional Economic Expansion

In committee I raised a question on the legality of the grants because clause 7 specifies that "no development incentive may be authorized ... if ... (a) it is probable that the facility would be established, expanded or modernized without the provision of such an incentive." Two deputy ministers have said that grants are merely likely to accelerate decisions rather than to effect a negative decision. But the minister has told us that no legal opinion has been obtained from the Minister of Justice on whether any grants can be given under these circumstances, and he gave no undertaking that such a legal opinion would be given.

To sum up, Mr. Speaker, we believe that regional disparities must be overcome. Every Canadian in every region of the country has the right to share in national prosperity. The government is placing emphasis in its program on these give-away grants, now totalling a quarter of a billion dollars. The government has the wrong priorities in its program. The taxpayer is tired of paying money to industrialists, with no results to show for it. The program needs a complete overhaul.

A new program must be developed that includes direct state intervention to establish the nucleus of an industrial strategy in each region, an overhaul of the corporate tax structure to reflect the real social costs of locational choices by industry, a carefully planned infrastructure program co-ordinated with industrial development, and there must also be genuine consultation and co-operation with the provinces and with local groups and organizations rather than the phony consultations that the minister has just reported.

Finally, Mr. Speaker, where is the progress with regard to other programs which I think all of us can go along with, such as the multiplex program already referred to and the agricultural services centre program? These other types of programs certainly need much more priority than has been given to them.

Topic:   ROUTINE PROCEEDINGS
Subtopic:   REGIONAL ECONOMIC EXPANSION
Sub-subtopic:   ANNOUNCEMENT OF CONTINUANCE OF PRESENT DESIGNATED REGIONS FOR FURTHER PERIOD
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?

Mr. C.-A. Gauthier@Roberval

Mr. Speaker, I beg to congratulate the minister for the statement he has just made, namely that it has been "decided that regions now designated for purposes of the Regional Development Incentives Act should continue to be designated for an additional period of 12 or 18 months". I would have liked to receive a copy of his statement earlier, but it has just been put on my desk. It is regrettable because I would have had many comments to make on this matter.

The minister has also said and I quote:

Regions designated in January 1971 for a period ending July 1, 1972, will continue to be designated for a further period of 12 months-that is, until July 1, 1973. These regions include southwestern Quebec and parts of eastern Ontario.

Mr. Speaker, some might say that I talk in a parochial spirit, but I always think about the Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean area. I congratulate the minister for the projects that have been carried out in this area, particularly in the Roberval riding, because the constituents are satisfied with the programs that have been implemented, although they are unhappy about the manner in which they were announced. I warn the minister not to use this kind of announcement concerning these programs as a political stepping-stone because I discovered when the last two

June 7, 1972

Immigration

were made that we were faced with a real Liberal organization and the people were saying that the event was "patronized" by the Liberal party.

Topic:   ROUTINE PROCEEDINGS
Subtopic:   REGIONAL ECONOMIC EXPANSION
Sub-subtopic:   ANNOUNCEMENT OF CONTINUANCE OF PRESENT DESIGNATED REGIONS FOR FURTHER PERIOD
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IND

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Independent

Mr. Speaker:

Order. If the hon. member will look at Standing Order 15 (3), he will see that any remarks he may make should be limited to the minister's statement and should not be designed to provoke a debate.

Topic:   ROUTINE PROCEEDINGS
Subtopic:   REGIONAL ECONOMIC EXPANSION
Sub-subtopic:   ANNOUNCEMENT OF CONTINUANCE OF PRESENT DESIGNATED REGIONS FOR FURTHER PERIOD
Permalink
SC

Charles-Arthur Gauthier

Social Credit

Mr. Gauthier:

Mr. Speaker, I did thank the minister in the first place, because he likes to be thanked.

Just the same I want to draw his attention on the matter because all the constituents of Roberval were disgusted, including some of the most sincere liberal organizers.

I have pointed out to the minister in committee the projects concerning the small local industry. I think that in general, too much attention has been given to the large industry, the so-called millionaire industry at the expense of the small local industry. Yet it is the latter which provides jobs and not the large industry. Indeed, as soon as some aid is granted to the large industry, it abolishes jobs, while the local industry does the opposite.

The minister is well aware of that fact, since I have already drawn his attention on it. I hope he will take the matter in consideration because I know he is not stubborn. Indeed, he takes heed of criticism and I hope he will do so when announcing the establishment of industries in the Roberval constituency.

Topic:   ROUTINE PROCEEDINGS
Subtopic:   REGIONAL ECONOMIC EXPANSION
Sub-subtopic:   ANNOUNCEMENT OF CONTINUANCE OF PRESENT DESIGNATED REGIONS FOR FURTHER PERIOD
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IMMIGRATION

SUICIDE OF ALICIA WIERCIOCH-REQUEST FOR UNANIMOUS CONSENT TO MOVE MOTION UNDER S.O. 43

LIB

Stanley Haidasz

Liberal

Mr. Stanley Haidasz (Parkdale):

Mr. Speaker, under Standing Order 43 I ask permission of this House to move the following motion:

That the House of Commons Standing Committee on Labour, Manpower and Immigration investigate the circumstances of the suicide of Alicia Wiercioch, a mother aged 35 years who was ordered deported by the Immigration Appeal Board, and that the committee review the Immigration Appeal Board Act and related federal legislation and regulations and consider amendments to these and other acts as necessary.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   SUICIDE OF ALICIA WIERCIOCH-REQUEST FOR UNANIMOUS CONSENT TO MOVE MOTION UNDER S.O. 43
Permalink
?

Some hon. Members:

Hear, hear!

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   SUICIDE OF ALICIA WIERCIOCH-REQUEST FOR UNANIMOUS CONSENT TO MOVE MOTION UNDER S.O. 43
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LIB

Stanley Haidasz

Liberal

Mr. Haidasz:

Mr. Speaker, in view of this tragedy and other near tragedies and hardships related to the operations of the federal legislation and regulations dealing with immigration and deportation cases-

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   SUICIDE OF ALICIA WIERCIOCH-REQUEST FOR UNANIMOUS CONSENT TO MOVE MOTION UNDER S.O. 43
Permalink
IND

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Independent

Mr. Speaker:

Order, please. The hon. member has indicated what his motion is. As he knows, the rules are clear that the case cannot be argued. The hon. member has already indicated the terms of the motion. I think the Chair has no alternative at this point but to inquire whether there will be consent. This motion is put to the House under the terms of Standing Order 43 and requires unanimous agreement. Is there unanimous agreement?

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   SUICIDE OF ALICIA WIERCIOCH-REQUEST FOR UNANIMOUS CONSENT TO MOVE MOTION UNDER S.O. 43
Permalink
?

Some hon. Members:

Agreed.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   SUICIDE OF ALICIA WIERCIOCH-REQUEST FOR UNANIMOUS CONSENT TO MOVE MOTION UNDER S.O. 43
Permalink
?

Some hon. Members:

No.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   SUICIDE OF ALICIA WIERCIOCH-REQUEST FOR UNANIMOUS CONSENT TO MOVE MOTION UNDER S.O. 43
Permalink

June 7, 1972