Personal Data

Progressive Conservative
Fraser Valley East (British Columbia)
Birth Date
January 19, 1933
Deceased Date
December 12, 2003
store manager

Parliamentary Career

September 4, 1984 - October 1, 1988
  Fraser Valley East (British Columbia)
November 21, 1988 - September 8, 1993
  Fraser Valley East (British Columbia)
  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport (April 5, 1989 - May 7, 1991)
  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans (May 8, 1991 - June 24, 1993)
  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans (September 1, 1993 - October 26, 1993)
  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (September 1, 1993 - October 26, 1993)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 7 of 107)

March 23, 1993

Mr. Ross Belsher (Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of Fisheries and Oceans and Minister for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency):

Mr. Speaker, in reply to the hon. member I would like to explain first how the jurisdiction of our fisheries is shared between the federal government and the province of Ontario.

Section 91(12) of the Constitution Act of 1867 gives the federal government the responsibility for the sea coast and inland fisheries.

In non-tidal waters, the provinces have partial jurisdiction over fisheries that arises from provincial ownership of the water-bed or where the water-bed is privately owned, from their jurisdiction, as a result of section 92(13) of the Constitution Act of 1867 over property and civil rights.

As part of their jurisdiction the provinces allocate the fishery in non-tidal waters after conservation needs have been met. Moreover, nearly 100 years ago the federal government delegated administrative management responsibility to the Government of Ontario. I want to emphasize this point very clearly. The province of Ontario like other inland provinces is the manager of those fisheries within its boundaries.

The province wants to amend the Ontario fishery regulations so Ontario could issue aboriginal community fishing licences under the Ontario Game and Fish Act to the Williams treaty bands to fish for food and social and ceremonial purposes. Proposed changes to the Ontario fishery regulations, which are passed pursuant to the Fisheries Act, must be processed by the federal government.

Provinces proposing regulations should consult with parties likely to be affected by the regulation so that their concerns can be considered. I do not think it wise or appropriate for the federal government to re-enter the field of regulating Ontario's fisheries either in part or in whole. I do not think Ontario anglers need a second level of bureaucracy imposed on them.

March 23, 1993

Adjournment Debate

It is the minister's intention to honour the long-standing agreements authorizing Ontario to exercise management responsibilities in this area. Consequently should Ontario submit a final version of the proposed regulation the federal government will process it in the usual manner.

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March 23, 1993

Mr. Ross Belsher (Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of Fisheries and Oceans and Minister for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency):

Mr. Speaker, I rise in order to respond to the question asked by the hon. member for Calgary Northeast with regard to the Department of National Revenue's policy concerning uncollectable GST and more specifically with respect to its application to the yes referendum committee.

It has always been the department's policy to administer the Excise Ikx Act in a fair, impartial, predictable and consistent way, using the rules, sanctions and processes securely founded in law. The majority of Canadians meet their tax obligations with good grace.

Sometimes, however, there are situations when the government is not always able to collect the amount of tax due. In the case in point the Canadian Referendum Committee, which ceased to exist as of February 26, 1993 under the terms of the Referendum Act, has no remaining assets and is unable to conduct any further activities.

It is unfortunate that the inaccuracy of the information provided to the department and the department's misconceptions regarding funding and viability of the committee has led to this amount being uncollectable.

March 23, 1993

I want to assure the House that the action taken by the Department of National Revenue with the yes referendum committee in this situation is the same that the department would take with any other registrant in similar circumstances.

I assure the House that the Department of National Revenue administers the Excise Tax Act in such a manner that all taxpayers are treated equitably and fairly.

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March 22, 1993

Mr. Ross Belsher (Fraser Valley East):

Mr. Speaker, I ask all members of the House of Commons to take notice of the return from Croatia of the 1st Combat Engineer Regiment.

The 120 personnel from 1st Combat Engineer Regiment stationed at Canadian Forces Base Chilliwack spent six months with the United Nations protection force in the former Yugoslavian republic of Croatia.

In the very difficult environment of post-breakup Yugoslavia the troops distinguished themselves and carried out their duties of maintaining roadways and constructing facilities for use by UN forces. My congratulations to their commanding officer, Major Carmen Bradley.

I was honoured to meet the families of these troops during a welcome home ceremony this past Saturday evening at the base. I doubt whether people who have not been involved with the Canadian forces or had loved ones in the force realize the stress that the children and spouses go through during extended absences like this. These people on the home front have also done an excellent job of supporting the troops.

My congratulations and appreciation goes out to the forces coming home and to their families. We are proud of you.

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March 16, 1993

Have any public servants who have been offered early retirement

and or a severance package been subsequently rehired on contract

and, if so, (a) how many (b) at what cost (c) what is the estimated

cost had these individuals been retained?

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March 16, 1993

Mr. Ross Belsher (Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of Fisheries and Oceans and Minister for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency):

Mr. Speaker, I commend the hon. member on his perseverance in the situation in the Rouge Valley.

The IWA or the Interim Waste Authority was established by the Government of Ontario to examine and review all potential landfill sites within the regions of Durham, Peel and York metro. The members of the advisory board are charged with making a single recommendation for a landfill site in each area by mid-1993.

The inventory of the potential sites was based on scientific and technical data rather than on political and social pressures or considerations. That is the over-all game plan of the Ontario government. It functions at arm's length from the Government of Ontario and its recommendations reflect the members' technical assessment and not the government's plans or policies.

The IWA has reduced its long list of 50 sites down to a short list which still includes M-6, an area bordering on the Rouge Valley. Consequently M-6 will be assessed in terms of its technical feasibility. Adjacent land use and other influencing factors will be weighed accordingly when its suitability is being considered.

March 16, 1993

Subsequent to the IWA final recommendations, public hearings will be held to encourage input and inquiry into the appropriateness of the recommended sites following the consultation stage. The final decision will still rest with the Ontario cabinet.

In all likelihood the next stage of technical assessment will eliminate M-6 from the short list. As IWA operates independent of the government's proposed plans for land use in the Rouge Valley and as the government's current support for a park in the Rouge Valley neither restricts nor encourages the IWA's review process, advising the Ontario government of the federal government's concerns would not prove effective at this time.

The minister of natural resources made the Government of Ontario's position quite clear on January 19 of this year when he announced the creation of an urban park within the Rouge Valley and the preservation of

8,000 acres of adjacent agriculture land. The M-6 site is located within the area identified for preservation as agriculture land.

In evaluating the suitability of M-6, the IWA will now have to take into consideration the Ontario government's expressed intention to establish a park in the Rouge Valley. It is a decision which will likely have considerable influence in the IWA's final assessment of M-6 suitability for landfill purposes.

I remain confident in the Ontario government's commitment to the Rouge Valley park. I am hopeful that the IWA recommendations will not favour the M-6 site, given its current and projected adjacent land use.

When the IWA recommendations-

Subtopic:   SITTING RESUMED The House resumed at 6 p.m.
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