January 29, 1963 (25th Parliament, 1st Session)


Paul Joseph James Martin


Mr. Martin (Essex East):

I am sure the minister did not mean that. But because he has made the observation, I think some comment is essential. I clearly indicated when speaking on the resolution that a complete parallel between what we proposed and what exists in various European nations was not possible in Canada because in every instance we were dealing with unitary states in Europe, whereas in Canada we have a federal state with ten provincial bodies operating and exercising sovereign powers under section 92 of the British North America Act. This difference between our constitutional set-up and that of the European countries offers in itself no justification, it seems to me for the suggestion made by the minister. As I pointed out, or endeavoured to point out, in my previous statement, there must be the closest possible co-operation between the federal and provincial governments to make effective the purposes of a planning board which is intended to deal in a total way with the economic problems of Canada. Indeed, I complained that this bill was deficient, as we shall later show when we come to the pertinent clause, in that it does not make provision for the co-operation which must prevail between the two senior levels of government. The minister is quite right that because of the property and civil rights clause in the British North America Act, it is open only to the provinces to exercise those powers which are exercised, for instance, in the United Kingdom under the town and country planning act. But it should be possible, having in mind the fiscal powers of the federal government with regard to its general and unlimited tax policy, for the federal government to be able to work out arrangements in connection with the provincial power over industry, let us say, in any given province in order to meet the problem of, for example, the relocation of industry mentioned by the hon. member for Essex West the other evening. This bill will be one

National Economic Development Board
having a most limited scope unless we provide in it an obligation of the board and of the government to bring about a co-operative effort between the two levels of government to achieve objectives which we think even in a limited way are encompassed in clause 9 of the bill.
Clause 2 agreed to.
On clause 3-Establishment of board.

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