I am not here to represent the speculators or the branch-line owners, but I am here to represent the people who are served by these branch lines. The answers given to the questions put before the Government were not altogether satisfactory to me, with the exception of the statement made by the hon. Minister of Public Works (Mr. Carvell) that these branch lines would be operated. I understood the Government had power to force these companies to run these roads to the satisfaction of the people and of the Government. If that is the case it will be satisfactory. The people who live frotti twenty-five to one hundred miles away from the Intercolonial are certainly entitled to some consideration on the part- of the Government. I am not here to discuss politics, but I am here to discuss the interests of the people whom I represent, and who contributed their share to the building of the Intercolonial, which serves those living within a certain distance of each side of the road. But those living at a distance from the road and on. the shores, farmers and fishermen who are trying to make a living out of their industry, should have the advantage of railway transportation in order to be able to market their products to the best advantage. They have to sell their products at a lower price because of the high freight rates. If it is left in the hand's of the owners of these roads, and if nothing is
done to better the situation, I cannot see how it is going to end'. I would suggest that the Government take charge of these roads, as they have the power to take over any property that in- the public interest it may he necessary for them to acquire. If they cannot agree upon the price they have a way of taking over these roads by expropriation. Let them, then, expropriate the roads. Whether people are engaged in fishing or agriculture, we are anxious to give them every encouragement. I believe it is the duty of the Government to- take steps to serve the people throughout the country as- best they can and in such a way as to promote their interest and the public welfare generally.
Subtopic: EEVISED EDJTTON