William Kenneth ROBINSON

ROBINSON, William Kenneth, C.St.J., C.D., K.C.L.J., K.T.L., F.R.S.A., B.A., B.S.W., M.S.W

Personal Data

Party
Liberal
Constituency
Etobicoke--Lakeshore (Ontario)
Birth Date
July 16, 1927
Deceased Date
December 31, 1991
Website
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ken_Robinson_(Canadian_politician)
PARLINFO
http://www.parl.gc.ca/parlinfo/Files/Parliamentarian.aspx?Item=cf6f8abf-dbbd-4298-ac83-79a883e4ad0d&Language=E&Section=ALL
Profession
barrister, lawyer

Parliamentary Career

June 25, 1968 - September 1, 1972
LIB
  Lakeshore (Ontario)
July 8, 1974 - March 26, 1979
LIB
  Toronto--Lakeshore (Ontario)
  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Health and Welfare (October 1, 1977 - March 26, 1979)
May 22, 1979 - December 14, 1979
LIB
  Etobicoke--Lakeshore (Ontario)
February 18, 1980 - July 9, 1984
LIB
  Etobicoke--Lakeshore (Ontario)
  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of State for Social Development (March 4, 1980 - September 30, 1980)
  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada (March 4, 1980 - September 30, 1980)
  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue (March 1, 1984 - June 29, 1984)
  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue (June 30, 1984 - July 9, 1984)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 1 of 240)


June 7, 1984

Mr. W. Kenneth Robinson (Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of National Revenue):

Mr. Speaker, on Sunday, March 27, 125 demonstrators marched in support of three hunger strikers who have been camping outside the Polish Consulate in Mimico, a part of my constituency. For the last 16 days they have survived on water. After 18 days of this, permanent damage to their bodies may occur. They are starving in protest. They cannot bring their families into Canada because Polish authorities will not recognize the visas held by their spouses and children. These measures are drastic, and although the hunger strikers have been told it is blackmail and unfair pressure, they will continue with their protest.

One of the strikers, Grazyna Trzesicka, has attempted 11 times to reunite her family in Canada over the past two years, and 11 times she has been refused. Both Zygmunt Augus-tyniak and Wladyslaw Sliwa, whose applications were being considered by the Polish authorities, went on this hunger strike after a six-month delay for consideration was imposed, and after a "no" answer was finally given. All of the hunger strikers have been told that the decisions are final with no consideration whatsoever being given, and no appeal will be considered.

When applications for exit permits are refused, the remaining family members are often told they must bear the consequences for their relatives who emigrated illegally. This collective responsibility on the part of family members exists in all communist countries. We, as Canadian citizens, are quite fortunate. We have a choice. We have rights. We have a voice.

These hunger strikers have not seen their families in a long, long time. It is most unfortunate that people have to resort to these-

Topic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   POLAND-DENIAL OF EXIT VISAS-HUNGER STRIKE AT CONSULATE IN MIMICO, ONT.
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June 4, 1984

Mr. W. Kenneth Robinson (Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of National Revenue):

Mr. Speaker, I do not intend to respond to the Hon. Member in terms of who is stupid or who is not stupid. I do not think it is relevant to what we are talking about today. It is certainly not relevant to the matter which he has raised, and did raise, in his question of May 14, 1984.

I am responding to the question raised at that time by the Hon. Member for Simcoe South (Mr. Stewart) concerning the Royal Victoria Hospital of Barrie Foundation and the Department's refusal to allow tax deductions for payments of $500 made to the Foundation by taxpayers in exchange for a copy of a print of a painting by the Canadian artist, Ken Danby. The Hon. Member also seems to feel that the Department's position discriminates against hospitals in their fundraising campaigns. This is just not so.

In the matter at hand regarding the Royal Victoria Hospital of Barrie, I would like to point out that the Minister of National Revenue (Mr. Bussieres) is precluded by the confidentiality provisions of the Income Tax Act from discussing the particulars of the Department's dealings with this organi-

June 4, 1984

Adjournment Debate

zation. However, in general terms, it is the Department's practice to encourage, to the greatest extent possible, the acquisition of funds by Canadian charities. I am sure the Hon. Member will agree with that. Nonetheless, the Department of National Revenue, Taxation, must apply the law as it currently exists in this respect.

There are restrictions, however, as to what may and may not be considered a gift for the purposes of issuing an official tax deductible receipt for purposes of the Income Tax Act. In other words, there has to be an interpretation. Although the Minister may have discretion, he must listen to the advice he receives from his officials. He is obviously going to be very concerned about the whole question of precedent setting.

To be entitled to a tax deduction in such cases a taxpayer must have made a gift to a registered charity. As the Income Tax Act does not define the term "gift", it therefore takes on the common law meaning; that is, a voluntary transfer of

property without expectation of return, compensation or other consideration. Where a taxpayer receives an element of consideration in exchange for a payment to a registered charity no gift has been made and, accordingly, no tax deduction may be claimed. I would stress that the Department's position in this respect does not preclude registered charities from extending consideration to taxpayers in exchange for payments made. A charity may sell articles to a limited extent. However, as I am sure the Hon. Member will agree, there is a distinction to be drawn between payments made to a charity by a taxpayer in return for which no consideration is received, and those payments in return for which the payer receives something of tangible value. The former constitutes a gift for which an official tax deductible receipt may be issued. The latter can be considered as a payment for which consideration is received and thus for which no receipt may be issued.

Topic:   PROCEEDINGS ON ADJOURNMENT MOTION
Subtopic:   NATIONAL REVENUE-BARRIE HOSPITAL FUND RAISING CAMPAIGN-REFUSAL OF TAX DEDUCTIBILITY. (B) REQUEST THAT MINISTER RESIGN
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May 31, 1984

Mr. Robinson (Etobicoke-Lakeshore):

I agree that taxpayers have the same rights as any other citizen and they should be properly respected. I understand what the Hon. Member is saying, but all I am saying is that it is the way the Act is perceived and the way the power is used that is of the utmost importance to me.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   BUSINESS OF SUPPLY
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May 31, 1984

Mr. Robinson (Etobicoke-Lakeshore):

Mr. Speaker, it depends on whose glasses you are looking through and whether you are a pessimist or an optimist. I like to look at things optimistically, and I am looking at it from the right end of the telescope at this time. We are looking for all kinds of improvements, and I think we are going to get them. Probably a great deal of the impetus is a result as well of what the Hon. Member and his colleagues have been trying to do.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   BUSINESS OF SUPPLY
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May 31, 1984

Mr. Robinson (Etobicoke-Lakeshore):

Mr. Speaker, I believe that we all agree with the last points made by the Hon. Member. There is no reason to think otherwise.

Surely he realizes that the people who work in the Department of National Revenue are public servants who are also taxpayers. They are only doing the job that they are required to do under the Income Tax Act. While we may differ about how they are doing that job, we agree that they must carry out their functions in accordance with the present law. Does the Hon. Member not agree that the law should be changed but not by the Department of National Revenue but by the Government through the Department of Finance?

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   BUSINESS OF SUPPLY
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