June 26, 1980 (32nd Parliament, 1st Session)


Frederick James (Jim) Hawkes

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hawkes:

If I could just take a minute or two I will explain the intent of the amendment. Of course the government has a majority and so can pass or reject this amendment, but on this side of the House we are persuaded that the country is facing a fairly long and very severe period of unemployment. I think it is clear from the minister's own testimony that through an employer tax credit provision there will be a maximum increase in publicly supported employment for a minimal dollar cost.
The intent of my amendment is to extend that provision for an additional two years. I think this would probably see us through most of the unemployment crisis because it is an employer tax credit program and it could defer the expenditure to as late as 1989. Not every employer would claim the tax credit immediately and the budgetary situation might ease in the years ahead. That is one of the advantages.
The additional clause which I propose would provide maximum flexibility for change through a joint resolution of both Houses, and also, the date could be altered. I think the mechanism for altering the date would enable the government to provide the greatest possible number of jobs at the lowest possible cost. The official opposition is convinced that those jobs are needed today and that they will be needed in the future. We would like hon. members on the government side to give serious consideration to the amendments and to vote for them.

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