March 18, 1903 (9th Parliament, 3rd Session)


William Humphrey Bennett

Conservative (1867-1942)


That will be a very encouraging reply to give to gentlemen who wish to engage in this business. It is quite as vague as the promises made by the government to the manufacturers of this country. The hon. minister states that he will wait until the contract expires and then pronounce his ultimatum as to whether there are to be tenders called for and competition invited in the purchase of this article. How does the hon. minister expect that any person else is going into the manufacture of this alcohol if he is not to know until the expiration of the contract what the minister's policy is ? Does not the hon. minister think that it is due to himself to state what his policy is, because, after all said and done, this $22,500 which is paid during the year to this company, is not the personal money of the hon. Minister of Inland Revenue. It is the money of the people of Canada. What does the hon. minister propose to do next year ? Is he going to buy this article from the company without any competition 1 Would it not be better for him to say frankly, so that if any person else wishes to engage in tire manufacture of wood alcohol he can at once invest in the necessary plant, that there will be competition in the purchase of this article ? Is the hon. minister prepared to go that far ? I have reason to believe there are other people who are anxious to engage in the sale of this article, but knowing the influence of these gentlemen who are behind this concern, they have reason to believe that if they had this article to sell they would not find a purchaser in the Inland Revenue Department, because the rule must prevail, as it has prevailed for the last five years, that the purchase of this article should be made from this company exclusively. Here we have the hon. Postmaster General stating that he had arranged with this concern, that they were to be encouraged and that their output was to be taken, or a part of it.

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