August 17, 1988

PC

Thomas Michael McMillan (Minister of the Environment)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. Tom McMillan (Minister of the Environment):

Mr. Speaker, obviously the Hon. Member did not listen to my first response. I told him that my decision to issue the permit was not based exclusively on the report he says is flawed. My own Department found the report flawed. We identified some 19 major omissions or problems with the study. On the basis of those 19 flaws, if you will, we specified 13 stringent environmental conditions that would have to be met. If they are not met, the permit will be revoked and the project will be terminated.

Oral Questions ABORTION

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   PRESERVATION OF WATER QUALITY IN SOURIS RIVER
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INTRODUCTION OF LEGISLATION

LIB

Robert Phillip Kaplan

Liberal

Hon. Bob Kaplan (York Centre):

Mr. Speaker, my question is directed to the Prime Minister. I want to ask him what his Government's policy is on abortion. After the Supreme Court of Canada struck down the old law almost seven months ago, the Minister of Justice said that legislation would be brought in regulating abortion on an urgent basis and that it would respect the Charter of Rights and Freedoms as defined by the Supreme Court of Canada. Since then there have been two wasteful and misguided government initiatives which have failed to produce anything. The Prime Minister now says that legislation will be brought in at an appropriate time.

After seven months of abortion on demand, thanks to this Government, isn't now an appropriate time? When is the Government going to bring in its legislation?

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   INTRODUCTION OF LEGISLATION
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PC

Martin Brian Mulroney (Prime Minister)

Progressive Conservative

Right Hon. Brian Mulroney (Prime Minister):

Mr. Speaker, I am surprised that a former Solicitor General would ask a question like that, notwithstanding certain important developments before the Supreme Court of Canada in what is a most serious and sensitive issue that has important moral and religious implications for Canadians as a whole and, if I may so, in a very special way for the women of Canada. It is an extremely challenging issue where we would all seek to bring together a position that can be supported by the largest number of people, given the pluralistic society in which we live.

My hon. friend appears to be berating me somewhat for not being more precise than that. I regret that, except to express surprise that he would say that of me when his own Leader indicated that his, his leader's views on this issue were irrelevant.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   INTRODUCTION OF LEGISLATION
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BOROWSKI HEARING BEFORE SUPREME COURT-GOVERNMENT POSITION

LIB

Robert Phillip Kaplan

Liberal

Hon. Bob Kaplan (York Centre):

The Prime Minister, I think, is responsible for the Government of Canada and for legislation that is needed on this subject, and the Leader of the Official Opposition did take a position on the resolutions that were brought forward.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   BOROWSKI HEARING BEFORE SUPREME COURT-GOVERNMENT POSITION
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PC

John Carnell Crosbie (Minister for International Trade)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Crosbie:

Yes, he ran. He wasn't here.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   BOROWSKI HEARING BEFORE SUPREME COURT-GOVERNMENT POSITION
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LIB

Robert Phillip Kaplan

Liberal

Mr. Kaplan:

I have the communique here. He did take a position on the resolutions. It was the Prime Minister who said he had no position on those resolutions. Then he said he would bring forward legislation. I would like to ask him about the Borowski matter. If the Government has not taken a position, why, with no position, does the Government feel justified in going back to the Supreme Court of Canada a second time to try to prevent a private citizen from having a case heard before the Supreme Court of Canada?

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   BOROWSKI HEARING BEFORE SUPREME COURT-GOVERNMENT POSITION
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PC

John Carnell Crosbie (Minister for International Trade)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. John C. Crosbie (Minister for International Trade):

Mr. Speaker, with respect to the Borowski case, the Chief Law Officer of the Crown, the Attorney General of Canada, has

August 17, 1988

Oral Questions

filed, as he must do, a brief in that case setting forth a factum, setting forth the law which the law officers of the Crown feel to be pertinent to the questions in the appeal. His document is a legal submission, Mr. Speaker, not a statement of government policy. It sets forth an analysis of the current state of the law rather than being a statement of what the law might be or should be. That is the position taken by the Attorney General, who, in these matters, must operate independently of the Government. The Government cannot direct the Attorney General, nor the law officers of the Crown, as to what legal opinions they must produce.

They must give their unvarnished legal opinions, undeterred by government policy and separate altogether from any directives or directions of the Government. The Attorney General asked the court to postpone the appeal until Parliament had dealt with the matter so that the questions could be heard in a legislative context. That was his request which the court turned down. The matter is now going forward.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   BOROWSKI HEARING BEFORE SUPREME COURT-GOVERNMENT POSITION
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CANADIAN RADIO-TELEVISION AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION FRASER VALLEY CABLE TELEVISION SERVICES

PC

Ross Belsher

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Ross Belsher (Fraser Valley East):

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Communications.

Cable television companies in the Fraser Valley have recently notified their subscribers that they are about to receive additional services. Rates will be increased to cover the cost of three new channels which will be arbitrarily added to the cable service.

In light of the fact that many of my own constituents, especially seniors in the Fraser Valley and I am sure others across the country, do not want the additional channels, could the Minister request the CRTC to re-examine these proposed changes immediately?

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   CANADIAN RADIO-TELEVISION AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION FRASER VALLEY CABLE TELEVISION SERVICES
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PC

Flora Isabel MacDonald (Minister of Communications)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. Flora MacDonald (Minister of Communications):

Mr. Speaker, the decision to award licences for new specialty services was taken by the CRTC last November. It included in those series of decisions a structure for the imposition of new tariffs regarding the services.

The CRTC also indicated at that time that the carriage of these services would be by cable but it would not be mandatory. In other words, the services would be carried by the cable distributors based on the requirements of the local market.

The CRTC also at that time did a study indicating that it felt that the over-all rate of the increase of the new tariffs would not be excessive, and the Government in responding to

those services and to the appeals therefrom last January did not see fit to vary that decision.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   CANADIAN RADIO-TELEVISION AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION FRASER VALLEY CABLE TELEVISION SERVICES
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PC

John Allen Fraser (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Speaker:

The Hon. Member for Prince Albert, a single question please.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   CANADIAN RADIO-TELEVISION AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION FRASER VALLEY CABLE TELEVISION SERVICES
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DEPARTMENT OF REGIONAL INDUSTRIAL EXPANSION

NDP

Stanley J. Hovdebo

New Democratic Party

Mr. Stan J. Hovdebo (Prince Albert):

Mr. Speaker, the Government is continuing to reduce services to remote and rural areas of Canada.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   DEPARTMENT OF REGIONAL INDUSTRIAL EXPANSION
Sub-subtopic:   FUTURE OF REGIONAL OFFICES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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PC

John Carnell Crosbie (Minister for International Trade)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Crosbie:

What nonsense.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   DEPARTMENT OF REGIONAL INDUSTRIAL EXPANSION
Sub-subtopic:   FUTURE OF REGIONAL OFFICES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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NDP

Stanley J. Hovdebo

New Democratic Party

Mr. Hovdebo:

My question is for the Minister of Regional and Industrial Expansion. We have seen a cut in postal and transportation services. Now it has come to light that the Department of Regional and Industrial Expansion intends to close its offices in Prince Albert and La Ronge, Saskatchewan, and in Prince George, British Columbia. These DRIE offices administer the special ARDA and the Regional Economic and Development subsidiary agreements.

Instead of forcing northerners to travel many miles to reach other offices and take advantage of the services there, will the Minister make a commitment today that these three offices will remain open as long as these programs are in effect?

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   DEPARTMENT OF REGIONAL INDUSTRIAL EXPANSION
Sub-subtopic:   FUTURE OF REGIONAL OFFICES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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PC

Robert René de Cotret (Minister of Regional Industrial Expansion; Minister of State for Science and Technology)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. Robert de Cotret (Minister of Regional Industrial Expansion and Minister of State for Science and Technology):

Mr. Speaker, I would only like to reassure my hon. colleague that the whole thrust of what this Government is doing in the area of regional development is to decentralize the decision-making process so that regions can make their own decisions that have an effect in those regions.

We have done that with the Western Diversification Office, we have done that with the Atlantic agency, we have done that with Northern Ontario, and we have done it with Quebec. That is the spirit in which the whole program is working.

I will be happy to look into those three specific cases, but let me assure my colleague that decentralization on local decisionmaking fits perfectly well with the whole thrust of what we are doing.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   DEPARTMENT OF REGIONAL INDUSTRIAL EXPANSION
Sub-subtopic:   FUTURE OF REGIONAL OFFICES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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PC

John Allen Fraser (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Speaker:

I want to advise the House there will be a single question from the Hon. Member for Etobicoke North. Then before going into Routine Proceedings, as I think has been arranged among Members, there will be a statement by the Minister for International Trade. The Hon. Member for Etobicoke North.

August 17, 1988

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   DEPARTMENT OF REGIONAL INDUSTRIAL EXPANSION
Sub-subtopic:   FUTURE OF REGIONAL OFFICES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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AIRPORTS

August 17, 1988