This section reads:
Notwithstanding the provision of section 3 of this Act, it is hereby declared that the powers of any such company have been so restricted since the date of the enactment of Chapter 37 of the Revised Statutes of Canada, 1906, that is to say, the 31st January, 1907.
It not only applies to the Toronto-Niagara company, but it applies to any company that dates since that time, if there are any such companies in Canada. We were informed that no other companies were affected by this section, excepting the Toronto-Niagara company. I do not know whether that is the case or not, and I question if the minister or any hon. member can say whether we are interfering with the rights of any other company by this legislation or not. But the legislation is certainly vicious, inasmuch as it is retro. active. I do not want to be misunderstood. I want to vote for a clause that will give the city of Toronto the power to deal with
this, question tor the future, but I do not want to vote for a clause that dates back to 1906, and takes away certain rights which that company legally and properly enjoyed at that date, and enjoys to-day. If it is right that the city of Toronto should have the right in the future in the public interest, let us give that right, but let us not, in order to do so, introduce such a section into the General Railway Act of Canada when we do not know who will be struck by it. We are not certain how far this provision goes, and I want the minister to consider that point. There may be other companies that have obtained rights as far back as 1906, which rights may be affected by the legislation we are passing here.