April 22, 1936 (18th Parliament, 1st Session)


Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Marine; Minister of Railways and Canals)



I trust that my hon. friend from St. Lawrence-St. George (Mr. Cahan) is not serious in suggesting that the civil service commission be allowed to select the staffs for all the business that is conducted by the harbour boards from Halifax to Vancouver, fluctuating staffs, and so forth. I do not like to be unpleasant about the thing, but it does seem to me that my hon. friend might have made some such suggestion when his government was in power and the harbour boards were operating exactly the same business. I cannot imagine that he would seriously make the suggestion. I do not think it would have been wise to put the staffs under the civil service commission then any more than it is to-day. I cannot think of a better qualified board to determine the personnel than the three experts whom we shall appoint to have direction over this enterprise. I cannot think of any better way of building up a service that will be a credit to the dominion than to allow the commission to pick its own personnel, place them on a basis of efficiency, and carry on from there.

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