April 21, 1922 (14th Parliament, 1st Session)

LIB

William Richard Motherwell (Minister of Agriculture)

Liberal

Mr. MOTHERWELL:

Well, the circumstances I had in mind related to the election campaign of 1911, in which reciprocity was an issue-why the air was blue with it. My hon. friends have very short memories. But let us get back to agriculture for a moment, and to natural fertilizers, not artificial fertilizers.
With regard to cold storage, I may repeat briefly what I said last night in reply to the hon. member for Victoria and Carle-ton (Mr. Caldwell). Under the terms of a cold storage act passed many years ago, substantial assistance was given to those engaging in the construction of cold storage plants. Until about 1917 or 1918, thirty per cent of the cost of construction was paid by the federal government as a subsidy to all cold storage plants constructed under plans and specifications laid down by the Department of Agriculture. That law was changed to apply only to municipal cold storages, in order that the burden on the revenues of the country might be decreased. Very few plants- possibly only one or two-have been constructed under the amended law. I would like to have advised the Minister of Finance to revert this year to the original enactment providing for the thirty percent subsidy, but I did not think I was justified in doing it this year. Possibly

we may be able to do so another year when the treasury is less depleted-and I think if we did, it would go a long way toward meeting the situation. Of course, I cannot pledge the Government to that policy. The question of cold storage is becoming a very vital one, not only in my hon. friend's province but in other provinces as well. British Columbia in particular.
The question of lectures has been referred to. I have driven twenty-five miles after dark from Abernethy to Indian Head to hear an agricultural lecture, only to listen to an address by someone who did not know beans when the bag was open. I do not know whether any of the lecturers my hon. friend refers to have been down in his district since the first of January. I am prepared to take responsibility for any shortcomings in that regard, even those which date back to the time prior to my taking office; if these men are there yet, I am responsible for it.

Topic:   DATE OF THE BUDGET
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