John Patrick (Pat) NOWLAN

NOWLAN, John Patrick (Pat), B.A., LL.B.

Personal Data

Party
Independent Conservative
Constituency
Annapolis Valley--Hants (Nova Scotia)
Birth Date
November 10, 1931
Website
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pat_Nowlan
PARLINFO
http://www.parl.gc.ca/parlinfo/Files/Parliamentarian.aspx?Item=233615e5-2efe-4c21-add7-fe0441115d79&Language=E&Section=ALL
Profession
barrister, lawyer

Parliamentary Career

November 8, 1965 - April 23, 1968
PC
  Digby--Annapolis--Kings (Nova Scotia)
June 25, 1968 - September 1, 1972
PC
  Annapolis Valley (Nova Scotia)
October 30, 1972 - May 9, 1974
PC
  Annapolis Valley (Nova Scotia)
July 8, 1974 - March 26, 1979
PC
  Annapolis Valley (Nova Scotia)
May 22, 1979 - December 14, 1979
PC
  Annapolis Valley--Hants (Nova Scotia)
February 18, 1980 - July 9, 1984
PC
  Annapolis Valley--Hants (Nova Scotia)
September 4, 1984 - October 1, 1988
PC
  Annapolis Valley--Hants (Nova Scotia)
November 21, 1988 - September 8, 1993
PC
  Annapolis Valley--Hants (Nova Scotia)
November 21, 1990 - September 8, 1993
IND
  Annapolis Valley--Hants (Nova Scotia)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 2 of 722)


June 10, 1993

Mr. Nowlan:

Mr. Speaker, on a point of order. I want to compliment the parliamentary secretary for having had some discussions beforehand. Certainly this did not catch this member by surprise.

This is the way a good many bills can be dealt with especially when there is such a need to fill a very obvious gap in our jurisprudence with all the problems that have been mentioned about whether in the hurry to do this before we break all those issues have been addressed.

However the reason I speak is that I commend the parliamentary secretary for doing it this way. I totally resent again the government House leader imposing Standing Order 78(1) during report stage and then moving to complete report stage and third reading all at once.

I know this is not the time to discuss that but I just want to compliment the parliamentary secretary. This is the way bills can move rather than using that tremendous gag of time allocation which makes a travesty of this place.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   REVIEW OF ACT
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June 10, 1993

Mr. Pat Nowlan (Annapolis Valley-Hants):

Mr. Speaker, I am glad to participate in this debate. I do so with all appreciation and sensitivity to my colleagues from Atlantic Canada.

I have to say in the frankness of Parliament there are many Atlantic Canadians, not just on the Island, not just friends on the Island, but Canadians in other parts of Atlantic Canada who do not favour the fixed link for a

variety of reasons.

I want to declare my bias right at the start. I am philosophically against the fixed link, before getting into all the studies, before getting into the dollars and cents of this so-called contract out, build a bridge and 75 years down the road it has to be repaired. We talk about tolls. There are going to be tolls. That is my fundamental bias before getting into the facts and figures. That is where I am coming from.

June 10, 1993

Government Orders

I understand some of the debate going on, having good friends from P.E.I and there are members from P.E.I. in the House. No one will really know until if and when it is ever built how it is going to change the character of the Island.

As far as I am concerned-not being a native of the Island it may be a little easier for me to say-but I do resent some of the remarks made by the hon. member from Hillsborough whom I do respect. I do resent some of his remarks that members not from Atlantic Canada who raise questions in the House of Commons perhaps do not have the right to raise those questions. They have that right by the very fact that it is a bill before the House of Commons. It involves members from across the country and it involves the taxpayers of Canada.

One of the biggest shams of this bill is the business and charade that it is not going to cost the taxpayers any money. That is absolutely patently false. If the government had come clean on this public relations aspect of this bill many moons ago perhaps I would not feel quite as compelled to give another viewpoint from Atlantic Canada that it is not all peaches and cream in Atlantic Canada. I am not going to talk any more about the sociological aspects.

I used to practise law in British Columbia. I have a couple of children living there now. People may wonder why my friend from Cariboo-Chilcotin in British Columbia is pushing the fixed link, other than the fact that he is the parliamentary secretary to the Minister of Public Works.

That member knows as anyone who lives in British Columbia knows, when you start to talk about the economics of links there is a lot more. This is coming from a person from Atlantic Canada where perhaps I might be criticized a little. However, there is a lot more economic sense in developing some of the plans to link the mainland of B.C. with Vancouver Island which is a high growth area of Canada than the sterile fixed link in an area that does not have as much growth.

I give full credit to the members who spoke from Hillsborough, Egmont and Cumberland-Colchester-a colleague of mine from Nova Scotia who has been doing a great job from his point of view-in making sure the

fixed link comes forward and gets into the House and through the House into creation.

I point out to all those people, especially to my friend from Cariboo-Chilcotin who was not here at the time, that there is another sham around here. It is not just the sham in dollars that every taxpayer has the right to ask about. The member from Hillsborough should not complain that members have raised questions about the fixed link because taxpayers are involved.

There is a great shell game on the cost of the subsidy that is supposed to pay for the bridge. Even the studies the hon. member for Cariboo-Chilcotin mentioned show the big difference between the subsidy actually being paid out and the subsidy being computed to help Strait Crossing build the bridge, supposedly without any taxpayers' dollars.

Mention was made of the ferry workers and where they are going to fit into it. Well, we can talk about other aspects of this matter in terms of the fish stocks and the fish beds that are going to be affected but there is another sham here.

One of the times the matter of the fixed link was on the floor of the House and had a little flurry of activity was back in the sixties. There is a member from Moncton here whose mother was the member from Moncton and has a gold-plated shovel. Perhaps it is appropriate to have a shovel when talking about the fixed link. However she actually helped dig the foundation of the causeway around Moncton. All the studies up until that time had the causeway as the answer to join up P.E.I.

You can go to Moncton today. You can travel down there in the summertime. You can go over on the ferry. You might have to wait a while, but at least you have the character of an island. You will not get this Coney Island fixed link where people are going to build their substations and their offices on the mainland, scoot over to the island, do their little business and then scoot off.

Anne of Green Gables is going to become the ghost of Cavendish beach if this fixed link goes through. Even the Japanese will not be hoodwinked into visiting the character of the Island and staying a few days and making-

June 10, 1993

well, not making love, but in effect getting acquainted with Anne of Green Gables, and certainly getting excited by Lucy Maude Montgomery and her story. What are they going to do now? They are going to take their diesel buses we see outside the House of Commons and they are going to diesel onto the Island, shake hands with Anne of Green Gables and get off the Island before the sun goes down. That is what might happen.

There is a sham in the figures. There is a sham about politics. Perhaps I can understand the government's point of view to get the bill through. That is another thing. Perhaps in an election government candidates will say they are doing this and maybe other candidates too, but I just do not know if that is going to work.

What really bothers me about this whole aspect regardless of some of the rhetoric that I have used in these few minutes is that Canadian taxpayers have been inundated-look at poor Premier Bob Rae, look at any premier you want-with fiscal restraint. The thing about fiscal restraint is we are not supposed to have megaprojects.

In an interesting article in The Financial Post Diane Francis is starting to question equalization. I read it and I hope to get a letter off to Diane Francis because she certainly forgot a little history.

The Rowell-Sirois commission said that Atlantic Canada deserves equalization to help offset the high tariff policy that built up industry in Ontario. There was a fellow named C.D. Howe who killed the shipbuilding industry in Atlantic Canada and took it up the St. Lawrence River to the Saguenay because they were afraid of German U-boats. There are those types of things in history and Diane Francis did not really get into them.

My concern is with the good sincere Canadians, taxpayers all, from coast to coast who with equalization helped Atlantic Canada address some of its problems because it does not have the economic growth. Would they agree to look at a fixed link? I think this might be the last straw. In effect Canadians, all taxpayers who have good projects in their areas, are going to ask why we are building a billion dollar bridge which was not part of the study, as other members have said. Tb be frank, as far as I am concerned, if we are going to have a fixed link,

Government Orders

build a tunnel. However, I do not know what the cost of that would be.

Mr. Speaker, I see you are giving me the high sign that I have one minute left. Seriously, as a federal member of Parliament, I sympathize with my colleagues from P.E.I. as members of Parliament. I understand the division on the Island.

However, I am very concerned in this time of fiscal restraint that taxpayers are going to wonder about the credibility of a government that goes ahead with this type of project. All over the land they see local projects not as big as a billion dollar bridge, but other projects be they in the cities or the country, be they day care or helicopters, and they wonder: How can a government go ahead after all the talk about a fixed link from Confederation on and at this time build a fixed link?

That will have implications for Atlantic Canada which makes it important for Atlantic Canadians to know about some of the shams in this bill.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   MEASURE TO ENACT
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June 10, 1993

Mr. Pat Nowlan (Annapolis Valley-Hants):

Madam Speaker, my question is for the minister of fisheries but it is not on fish. It is in respect to his position in terms of ACOA. Could he please seriously bring us up to date on the status of the Canada-Nova Scotia food agricultural agreement in which so many projects are on hold until we sort out a few problems?

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   CANADA-NOVA SCOTIA AGRICULTURE AGREEMENT
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June 10, 1993

Mr. Pat Nowlan (Annapolis Valley-Hants):

Mr. Speaker, I will just make a very short comment on this amendment because I think a couple of other members want to speak.

I know the parliamentary secretary wants to move the matter along. Quite frankly I may surprise the parliamentary secretary because my objection to the amendment really was the five-year period. I have the greatest respect for the member for Halifax who moved the amendment for the member for Moncton.

I was involved in legislation when I sat on the other side where there were review procedures under the National Transportation Act. I think it was three years. I was bothered by the five-year period. I listened quite seriously to the parliamentary secretary. I frankly think he makes a good case.

It is a new bill. I commend the member from Westminster who the member for Winnipeg Transcona mentioned. I was here when she introduced her private member's bill. I have concern as other members have mentioned-she certainly did in her thoughtful speech- about this legislation because there were some serious issues involved in it.

Other interest groups outside the House have raised serious questions but I tend to agree with the parliamentary secretary. We know there is an issue. All members want to try to resolve this horror of stalking people, basically women. I am not talking about children; they are stalked too.

There is not a member in the House who has not had some constituent in that type of situation. There is no doubt about it. We cannot get away from it. We try to equalize everything. There is emancipation of men and women. The fact of the matter is that with the law of the land and the way women are treated unfortunately by

some men they are still at a very real disadvantage in many ways.

Will the bill meet all the problems? Obviously there will still be some horrors occurring in our streets, towns and cities, but at least the bill is trying to address the problem.

I do feel a five-year review could very well be an impediment. I would hope the new government after the next election will be watching this matter. I do not think we will wait for the Supreme Court of Canada to decide five years down the road that it is an interesting time to review it. I tend to share the views of the parliamentary secretary.

Just briefly on the Young Offenders Act which is also included in the bill, I tell the House I have just had a questionnaire returned. The number of replies absolutely boggled my mind. I have sent out a few questionnaires in my term as a member. Never before have I had more returned and signed with the comment page filled with substance.

Some people do not think these questionnaires are even read. Other than members' pensions which get a real response from members, some of whom have tried to address it, one thing that surprised me was the reaction of the public on the need to reform the Young Offenders Act. I appreciate what the parliamentary secretary said. I was here when the Young Offenders Act came in. I was here in 1985 when the amendments came in.

In view of the horrors with young offenders and because of protection under that law, I am afraid the new Parliament better not wait for a year or two years but it better address the issue. It really has had a lot of response, certainly from my constituents. It is one of the consistent themes in the over 2,000 questionnaires I have received back.

Some may wonder about 2,000 questionnaires. I do not know how much experience some members have had, but I remember Pierre Elliott Trudeau in his heyday in 1968 sent out a questionnaire to his riding of Mount Royal of 50,000-plus and he received 760 back. He thought that was great. In my history, other than having sent out the last one, we get about 1,000 back. Just three years ago they did not even sign. There is always a little hook to get a constituent to sign so they can perhaps go

June 10, 1993

on a mailing list. What really impressed me was that over two-thirds signed and made substantive comments.

In conclusion the parliamentaiy secretary has a good point on the five-year period. TTiat is way too long. I hope it will weigh on the conscience of a new government to make sure it happens even quicker to meet the exigencies of the situation. The new Parliament had better address the Young Offenders Act because that is a scar on the conscience of society that has to be met.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   REVIEW OF ACT
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June 4, 1993

Mr. Nowlan:

Yes, Mr. Speaker, just very briefly. If there is another question I will take it in the short time for comments.

I understand what the minister explained and I gave him some credit. We had discussions yesterday as the minister well knows. I am sorry about the position I am in because of the Standing Order 78(1) closure motion.

After the discussion yesterday and knowing that some of it happened very recently, I thoroughly expected the proper thing would be to have the debate. I not surprised with the turn-out in the House on a Friday afternoon we could have got into second reading without a closure motion, had exchanges on certain questions and the matter would have still proceeded. If it did not get through this Friday, I certainly feel with the Prime Minister taking such an active interest, and with the consistent interest of the minister, it is not be beyond the realm of probability or possibility that there could be third reading debate and a vote next week in the extended hours we will have then.

Government Orders

The minister speaks very sweet language. He has worked with this and I give him credit. In his own speech he said he was very happy when it was finally consummated. I am saddened that from his work and the Prime Minister flying north the parliamentary process as far as I am concerned has been abused in trying to do a good thing.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   NUNAVUT LAND CLAIMS AGREEMENT ACT
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