October 31, 1991               HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY PROCEEDINGS           Vol. XLI  No. 64

The House met at 2:00 p.m.

MR. SPEAKER (Lush): Order, please!

Statements by Ministers

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Mines and Energy.

DR. GIBBONS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Speaker, the mining industry is very important to the economy of this Province. Last year, mining accounted for 6.6 per cent of the provincial gross domestic product at factor cost and 4,420 people were gainfully employed. In comparison, forestry accounted for 0.7 per cent of the GDP at factor cost; fishing accounted for 2.2 per cent and pulp and paper accounted for 1.9 per cent.

Mr. Speaker, as most members of this House of Assembly are aware, the mining industry in Newfoundland and Labrador is experiencing some very difficult economic times. Low mineral prices, a high Canadian dollar, and low demand for iron ore and other products have had a negative effect on the industry resulting in mine closures and layoffs.

Mr. Speaker, while many of the factors contributing to the current downturn in mining and mineral exploration are beyond the Province's control, I believe there may be opportunities for further action by Government which would assure that the mining industry is a healthy and sustainable industry, operating for the long-term benefit of the people of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Mr. Speaker, to address these opportunities, I am pleased to announce the formation of a Ministerial Advisory Council on Mining and Mineral Exploration.

The Advisory Council will assess the Province's ability to attract investment in mineral exploration and mining and will make recommendations on possible government initiatives to enhance our competitive position relative to other areas of Canada, and the world.

I consider the establishment of this council to be particularly important at this time because of the recent closures and layoffs in the mining sector and because of the major reduction of activities in the exploration sector.

The Advisory Council will comprise senior officials from the mining and mineral exploration sectors, the mining service sector, labour, investment agencies and Government.

The following people have volunteered to serve on the Council: Mr. Peter Dimmell, President of the Newfoundland and Labrador Explorationists Group (NALE) and Regional Exploration Geologist for International Corona Corporation in St. John's, Mr. Bill Fotheringham, General Manager of Hope Brook Gold Incorporated, Corner Brook, Mr. Reg Gagnon, Vice-President of Operations Iron Ore Company of Canada, Labrador City, Ms. Adele Poynter, Commissioner of the Economic Recovery Commission, Mr. Bernard Sheppard, President of Maritec Limited, Springdale, Mr. Ray Smallwood, Vice-President and Branch Manager of Wood Gundy Incorporated in St. John's, Mr. Bob Young, the Atlantic Director of the United Steelworkers of America. The Mining Association of Canada will be nominating someone externally, shortly.

The Advisory Council will be chaired by my Assistant Deputy Minister of Mineral Resource Management, Mr. Paul Dean. Dr. Richard Wardle, Senior Geologist for Labrador, Geological Survey Branch will be principal secretary for the committee, and Dr. Byron Hynes, Manager of the Mineral Economics Section in the department, will be the principal financial resource person.

I expect the council to meet regularly over the next six months and to present a final report and recommendations in the spring of 1992.

I look forward to working with the members, and I thank all of them for agreeing to serve.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Green Bay.

MR. HEWLETT: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Of course, I welcome the announcement. It is about time. I suppose, like the old saying, it's better late than never. I represent an area where the mineral exploration industry is a major part of the local economy, and many of the companies involved find themselves down to about 25 per cent or less of their normal activity.

I do hope, arising from the deliberations of this particular advisory council will come some sort of incentive program, be it provincial and/or federal/provincial to stimulate mineral exploration, some changes in the tax structure, for instance, the payroll tax, etc., to encourage mining in our Province.

So I do hope that, in the end, this particular advisory council does some good, although I am rather disappointed that it has been appointed so late, with not one single operating mine in the Island part of this Province.

One disappointment, Mr. Speaker, the iron mines of Labrador, which have contributed greatly to the economic wealth of this Province, are having a tremendous problem, and there is no immediate plan to bring some relief to that area which is experiencing tremendous troubles right now. I am disappointed that that is not in there. Overall, I welcome it, and I hope it does some good, late as it is.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Forestry and Agriculture.

MR. FLIGHT: Mr. Speaker, it gives me great pleasure today, to announce Government's continued support for the Special Sawmill Assistance Program.

As hon. members may be aware, this program was established in 1976 to provide working capital loans at preferred interest rates to improve the viability of small and intermediate sized sawmill operations in the Province, and to stimulate production and employment in this industry during the winter months. The rationale for the program rests in the seasonal nature of the sawmill industry. Sales for the industry usually peak in the summer, resulting in a negative cash flow during the winter months. Average profits in the industry are simply not sufficient to support the inherent cash flow problem induced by winter season production. It is because of this, and the low equity base of most sawmillers, that commercial lending institutions are reluctant to lend working capital to these operations - hence the need for a Government sponsored program.

Up to 1989, Mr. Speaker, the Special Sawmill Assistance Program was renewed on an ad hoc basis through formal references to Cabinet each year. This created general uncertainty, and inhibited the implementation of needed capital improvements in the industry. In recognition of these difficulties, this administration decided in 1989 to offer the program on a permanent basis, which marked a significant change in policy with regard to Government's support for, and long-term commitment to, the sawmill industry.

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to announce that the Special Sawmill Assistance Program for 1991-92, which was previously administered by the Regional Development Authority, is now administered by the Enterprise Newfoundland and Labrador Corporation. The Program will commence on November 1, 1991, and will continue to March 31, 1992. The maximum loan to sawmillers will be $50,000 and it will be offered at the same preferred interest rate as is charged under the Enterprise Corporation's Small Enterprise Loan Program. Loans will be provided on an advance payment basis, and repayment schedules will be set over the May 15 to October 31 period. This assistance, Mr. Speaker, is restricted to sawmills that produced in excess of 75,000 board feet of lumber in the previous year.

In terms of Government specific financial commitment to the Special Sawmill Assistance Program this coming season, a sum of $700,000 will be made available over the period November 1 to March 31. It is expected that up to fifty small to intermediate sized operators will take advantage of this Program, directly contributing to the creation of approximately 5,800 person weeks of employment, which is equivalent to about 250 full-time jobs during the five-month period when loans will be made available.

Mr. Speaker, my announcement today, regarding the Special Sawmill Assistance Program reflects Government's commitment to this important industry and our resolve to see it make an even greater and longer lasting contribution to the rural economy of this Province. I encourage all eligible sawmillers to participate in this Program and pledge Government's support to ensure that the industry remains a vibrant and important sector in the overall forest products industry of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Humber Valley.

MR. WOODFORD: Thank-you, Mr. Speaker.

This statement by the minister is, without question, a positive statement. Its provisions will go a long way towards helping the sawmillers in this Province. If programmes in other departments were as positive as this, we would be in a lot better state than we are today, that I can assure you.

The programme, as the minister stated, was established in 1976 by the former administration and, no question, it is an excellent programme. Regardless of what programme is brought in, there is always room for improvement, and this is no different. It is of a seasonal nature. The loggers usually cut the logs in winter and bring them to the sawmills that are not sawing in winter because of ice and other natural conditions.

I have a few concerns and I would like the minister to check on a couple of points for me, namely, taking the programme from the Regional Development Authority and putting it with Enterprise Newfoundland, whereby it would come under the Small Enterprise Loan Programme. One question I have, and maybe the Minister of Development can answer it later, is whether the rate of 3 percentage points below prime will remain the same, or will it be higher? I do not know. Maybe the minister can answer that later.

The $50,000 limit per sawmiller is a fairly good limit for maximum. However, I caution the minister that if a few sawmillers take maximum, that would reduce the funding to others. But there should be some flexibility as to the $50,000 versus the $700,000.

Also, I caution the minister on the March 31 deadline. Last year, we ran into a problem. Because of the late spring and a lot of snow left around last April, many of the sawmillers could take advantage of the weather conditions and still buy the logs. So, it would be very useful to have some flexibility there.

All in all, Mr. Speaker, it is a positive statement. The logging industry in the Province is one of the few areas in which we can create new jobs. The pulp and paper industry in the Province cannot create new jobs. There are only x number of cords of wood going through the mill, period, but in the sawmill industry there is always a new job that can be created because of the production of lumber and the sale of lumber, so just keep that in mind as that is one of the areas where we can increase production and increase our jobs.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Oral Questions

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Leader of the Opposition.

MR. SIMMS: Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the Premier, relating to his statement in the House yesterday where he announced, everybody will recall, that the Government was removing Newfoundland's local preference policy. At that time the Premier gave us some estimates based on 1989 statistics, of the value of Government purchases and contracts which would be covered by the agreement.

He also said the agreement would apply initially to Government Departments, but would eventually be expanded to include Crown corporations, municipalities, hospitals, universities, colleges and school boards -

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. SIMMS: Yes, that is what I am saying - if the Premier will give me a chance to ask the question, he will have his opportunity to speak.

Now, Mr. Speaker, I want to ask him, when he does stand, if he will tell me or tell the House, how much does each of those other agencies spend on goods, services and construction? What portion of their expenditures would be covered by this agreement? Will he also tell us if any studies have been done by the Government at all, dealing with this particular issue as to what the ramifications might be to Newfoundland and Labrador; and if there are any studies, will he table them in the House immediately?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: Mr. Speaker, I do not recall having said that it will affect Government agencies first and then later on bring in Crown corporations. It is not so. It affects Government agencies now, once it comes into effect, if we go ahead and sign it. We have agreed in principle that we should sign it and if between now and next June 30th, all of the negotiations that are entrained come into effect and we sign it, then it will come into effect for Government and Government agencies.

Now if by that time the Maritime Provinces have also included their municipalities, universities, schools and hospitals, then it will come into effect in respect of that as well. If the Maritimes have not included their municipalities, universities, schools and hospitals, it will not come into effect for Newfoundland. But let us assume that it does, it will come into effect for all, not just Government now and others some time in the future.

Now, Mr. Speaker, in terms of the numbers, perhaps I did not make that quite clear yesterday. Some time between eighteen and twenty-four months ago the first consultations were started with industry when we started the initial discussions with the Atlantic Provinces on this proposal, and we got a variety of reactions. Some were enthusiastic, some were opposed, and the majority expressed concerns because they were afraid of the processes that were in place in the Maritimes, that they would not provide our producers and people with fair access. So we did not enter into the agreement then, and it was only later this summer that we started to get into the agreement. So I just want to make very clear that this process started some two years ago.

Now, the Leader of the Opposition asked about what studies and assessments we have done. That was done at that time, and there were assessments as to how it would affect and what would be the extent of the effect. As a matter of fact, I just got a statement this afternoon as to the level of the effect in the last year of the ninety-seven construction contracts, over $100,000. There were ninety-seven construction contracts, over $100,000, let by Works, Services and Transportation for the fiscal year 1990-1991. Only one was awarded because of the local preference policy, and that was awarded to the lowest bidder, which was not an Atlantic firm. It was a firm outside the Atlantic Provinces altogether. So in terms of 1991 what we are doing would have made no difference whatsoever to the construction contracts in 1990-1991. For the years 1982 - these are the assessment that were done. He asked for it.

MR. SIMMS: Why don't you answer the question I asked?

PREMIER WELLS: Well, you better ask it again, because I understood the question was, Mr. Speaker, what assessments or what studies have been done as to the impact on Newfoundland.

MR. SIMMS: That is right.

PREMIER WELLS: Okay, here is the answer. The hon. Member might not like it, but here is the answer.

For the years 1982 to 1991 inclusive, the average difference between each successful bidder and the lowest bidder for contracts let by Government funded bodies was only 2.75 per cent. That is the average difference. For the fiscal year 1990-1991, the total number of contracts awarded as a result of the local preference policy was 384. In the entire sector of some 116,000 different contracts, the total let was 384 for a value of $16 million which represents three-tenths of 1 per cent of the contracts and less than 3 per cent of the value.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Leader of the Opposition.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SIMMS: Mr. Speaker, it never ceases to amaze. I do not want to repeat the same question over again. I asked if they had done any studies and would he table them? That is basically what I asked, and would he table them? Now, there are other things, Mr. Speaker, that were not quite made clear either by the Premier yesterday. He mentioned in his first answer that he wanted to make himself clear. Well, let me ask him to clarify some other things. In his statement yesterday he listed ten private sector associations which he claimed supported the removal of Government's local preference policy. Then lo and behold last night on the television news, everybody saw it, the President of one of those ten associations said they did not in fact support this initiative. Now, my question to the Premier is quite simple, was he yesterday simply wrong, was he trying to mislead the House, or would he like to take this opportunity to clarify his statements and tell us if in fact there are any others of that list of ten who do not approve?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: Mr. Speaker, the initial discussions were started a year and a half ago and as a result of the responses we did not enter into the agreement. The Maritimes did but we did not because we said our people are concerned about what is in place in the Maritimes, so we were not party to the contract. Last May in the meeting with the other Maritime Premiers, they asked Newfoundland to again consider joining, and I said to them, no, we cannot because you do not have fair operations in place and we are concerned about it. Our people say if you were prepared to alter certain provisions in your contract and change certain practices we would be prepared to enter into discussions with them. As a result of that we entered into negotiations with the other three provinces and those negotiations have been going on since June, I believe, and we have come to deal with the concerns that were addressed. Now, Mr. Speaker, two weeks ago, as a result of these new developments, a meeting was called and the ten individual associations that I read out here yesterday which are listed on Page 4 of the statement, the Construction Association, Road Builders, Manufacturers, etc., etc., a meeting was called, and that meeting was held, I think, on October 23. At that meeting it became clear to the people who were involved in the meeting, it was being run by the ERC in fact, that there was a substantial consensus amongst -


PREMIER WELLS: Just wait. If the hon. Members want to answer their own questions that is okay but if they want to know what happened I will tell them.

There was a substantial consensus amongst the persons present as to what should be done. In fact it was suggested that there should be a statement of their position and they set about to draft a statement that would reflect a consensus. Some of the members of these associations, not anybody present from Government, not anybody from the ERC, said if the Premier is going to this meeting with the Atlantic Premiers we should get this statement of our position to him before he goes to the meeting. That suggestion came from those, Mr. Speaker. Now, the news media, the Telegram in particular, I believe their report says we were railroaded or something, an unsuccessful attempt to railroad affirmation: Miss Campbell made it clear in a telephone interview with the Evening Telegram that all involved agree in principle with the idea of Newfoundland joining the Maritime Provinces in a procurement agreement at this time in the area of goods, services and construction, all involved agreed in principle. Now, Mr. Speaker, that is exactly what we did at the meeting in Halifax and here is the opening statement by the four Premiers: The four Atlantic Premiers have agreed in principle to expand the existing procurement agreement to include the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador. That is what was agreed in Halifax, Mr. Speaker. In terms of the resolution that was drafted, of the ten groups present, six will sign the resolution exactly as it was drafted, the statement exactly as it was drafted, so I am told. I have not talked to the individuals but I am told that six will sign it and a seventh had one minor alteration that had nothing to do with the substance and that alteration is apparently agreeable, so seven of the ten will sign that statement. Now, there are three others and the three others are these: the Construction Association and the Road Builders Association. Now, let me tell you the concerns, Mr. Speaker, of those two associations. They want to bring -

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

I remind the Premier that he has taken up a lot of time. I realize that we are getting into a complicated area, and when the Opposition asks these types of questions, they have to be prepared to get the full answer. I believe, in the meantime, that the Premier has substantially addressed the question raised by the Leader of the Opposition, and I think it is only fair that I should give him an opportunity, if he wants, to address something else that the Premier was addressing, or if the Premier could finish up in fifteen or twenty seconds.

PREMIER WELLS: Well, Mr. Speaker, I can only say to you that as I understand the Leader's question, it has not been answered. He wanted to know what were the positions of the individual groups. I am about to give it. Now, if he does not want it, I am quite prepared to sit down.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Leader of the Opposition.

MR. SIMMS: Mr. Speaker, just one quick supplementary. I will not debate the matter with the Premier. We know what he said yesterday in the House - it is in Hansard - and now we know that he is backing off a little bit from what he said yesterday.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Leader of the Opposition, continue with the question please.

MR. SIMMS: The supplementary is, Mr. Speaker: the Premier also said yesterday that some of the business groups told him that they may not be able to compete with Maritime businesses because of the higher tax burden that exists in this Province. I know that the Premier holds out some hope of negotiating a change in the equalization formula in order to get more money from Ottawa, but that is not a precondition of this agreement, I think he said that yesterday. So, I want to ask him: if in fact he is not successful in getting that change to occur, how will the Premier then reduce taxes on the private sector businesses so that they can, in fact, face Maritime competition? What idea does he have in mind?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: Mr. Speaker, I just want to clarify for a moment the terms and the concerns that those two associations had were including the MUSH factor. That has been arranged for. The second one was the exemptions in the Maritime Agreement. So the letter they signed indicated that they would sign it if those two concerns were addressed. They have been addressed. That is nine of the ten. The tenth is NOIA, as a concern. They wanted more detail about commitments to address workers' compensation, and so on. Now, Mr. Speaker, the question the hon. the Leader of the Opposition just asked was about tax exemptions.

Mr. Speaker, the objective is to try and place Newfoundland in the best possible position that we can. I am prepared to state to this House that I have complete confidence that what we have done will achieve that, and if we get the support of the Maritime Premiers, as they have indicated, I am confident that we can persuade the Federal Government to include, as a factor in determining equalization, the needs factor. That will enable us to set our tax rates to be more in line with the Atlantic Provinces. Now, Mr. Speaker, the Leader of the Opposition already knows the Government's commitment to address the tax and reform the tax, and that commitment is there, but we still must run the Province on a successful and sound financial basis, which we intend to do.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Menihek.

MR. A. SNOW: Mr. Speaker, on Tuesday I asked the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations about the Government's plans to assist the hundreds of displaced workers being laid off in western Labrador. Now I understand that they are in the process of establishing tripartite meetings with the Government, union, and the head office of the mining companies concerned in a couple of weeks, and I am pleased with that undertaking.

Mr. Speaker, I also understand that they are going to, hopefully, go beyond the contractual agreements that the mining companies have with their employees, and that they do indeed have a moral obligation to these employees.

We also understand, Mr. Speaker, and my question is to the Premier, we also understand in this Province that these mining companies are competing in the global economy, yet within the provincial infrastructure, if you will, especially with regard to taxation. I want to ask the Premier if he has any specific economic strategy to improve the economic viability of the mining operations in western Labrador?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: I am not a metallurgist, Mr. Speaker. I cannot improve the quality of the iron ore to make it more acceptable or more valuable than it is. We do not run the mining operations. They are private operations. We want to make sure that we have the maximum level of activity carried on in Labrador City, and in Wabush. At the moment, Wabush Mines does its pelletizing in Pointe Noire, in Quebec. The Iron Ore Company of Canada does its pelletizing in Labrador City. We want to increase the economic value to western Labrador, and to the Province as a whole, of the mining activity that takes place there. But the biggest factor in the problem in western Labrador at the moment is, Mr. Speaker, the steel industry, and the problems in the steel industry, with major steel companies in Canada. You cannot sell the iron if companies do not need the steel. That is really the fundamental problem.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Menihek.

MR. A. SNOW: Mr. Speaker, I was hoping that the Premier would be more forthright in answering a question, that is why I wanted to -

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. A. SNOW: It is a very important issue to the people in western Labrador, Mr. Speaker, and I would hope that the Premier would be forthright not just with this House but with the people in western Labrador.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

I would ask the Member to get on with his question, please.

MR. A. SNOW: I ask about the economic strategy, if he has any economic strategy. I did not ask about his knowledge about the mineral industry. But let me specifically ask the Premier if he would consider exempting the mining companies from the Provincial payroll tax?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: No, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, what economic strategy can there be, can this Government have, to improve the opportunity to sell minerals in western Labrador? We cannot improve Algoma Steel's operation, we cannot improve Stelco's operation, we cannot make the automobile industry more healthy, to increase the demand for iron ore. The relatively minor amount that is paid in payroll tax is not affecting in one iota what is happening in western Labrador in terms of the iron ore operation. That is determined by the demand for iron and the cost of producing it. Now that is so minuscule in relation to the overall operation that it has little or no bearing on it.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Menihek on a supplementary.

MR. A. SNOW: Well, since the Premier would not consider exempting the mining industry from this payroll tax because it is minuscule, and since the mining industry is the only resource industry not exempted from the payroll tax, will the Premier put the tax revenues collected from the mining companies into a special diversification fund or resource depletion fund so that this fund could then be used to help diversify the local economy? It could also be used in situations such as this to help the displaced workers.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: Mr. Speaker, the Government puts forward its tax policy and the House of Assembly either approves it or disapproves of it. We do so on the basis of managing and paying for the operations of Government within the Province. We do not collect from a specific industry to set aside for depletion in the mining industry or reforestation in the forestry. We set our general taxes to allow us to get an adequate level of revenue to manage the affairs of Government in the Province. The payroll tax was not imposed to provide for the mining industry or any other sector of the industry. It was imposed to enable us to generate revenue to deal with the impact of the Federal Government cutting back on the health and education portion of the established programme funding. That is why it was put into effect. Now it has nothing to do with the mining industry per se.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Fogo.

MR. WINSOR: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. My question was to the Minister of Social Services, but in his absence, since it relates to labour, I will ask the Minister of Labour. On Monday I questioned both Ministers. The Minister of Social Services indicated that some of the money of the $5 million that you announced was already spent. Is the Minister aware that several people who are clients of the Department of Social Services were called last week and informed they had a job; subsequently the next day the field workers called back the clients and informed them that there were no jobs available because their money had already been spent? Is the Minister aware of this?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations.

MR. GRIMES: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I am not aware of any specific incidents that may have occurred, such as that, in relation to the Department of Social Services and contact with field workers. It is quite possible that may have happened on one or two occasions when you look at the scope of the problem and the number of people who are trying to be assisted and addressed through this emergency employment response programme, and the fact that through Social Services close to $5 million was given in additional funding to the community development program part of that particular department, because that is an existing program that already had a backlog of applications before it that could not have been funded under ordinary budget measures for the year. It was identified that it was something that could readily put people to work almost immediately. In fact, it is possible that in one or two cases, somebody may have been told there was a job to start in a certain area tomorrow, and then there may have been changes. That will have to be confirmed or denied in the House by the minister responsible. But, if it did happen, it would not surprise me that it could occur in the sense that there was, indeed, on file a considerable number of applications and projects under the community development program that we tried to implement immediately and have had considerable success with. If anything, myself and the Minister of Social Services are very proud of the fact that we did not have to sit on that kind of money for weeks or months but were able to start the flow of the money almost immediately so that individuals could benefit from the expenditure of the money right away.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Fogo.

MR. WINSOR: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. A supplementary to the same Minister.

The minister in his release said, `The criteria for this program will also be extended. Not only will social assistance recipients be eligible to apply, but many others may avail.' What was the criteria for others, and how does it apply to future community development programs? Are these going to also be included in this new expanded criteria? Is that going to be the way the department is now going to operate?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations. I got it right this time.

MR. GRIMES: Yes. Thank you again, Mr. Speaker.

In response, the expansion of the criteria is on a one-time basis for purposes of this emergency employment response program only. To date, in information and in discussion with the Minister of Social Services yesterday, the indication - because we have been checking and trying to verify these numbers on an ongoing basis - is that close to 30 per cent of the people who had been put to work across the Province throughout the Island and Labrador, under the community development program, related to the emergency employment response additional money, have been for people who are other than the regular social services clients, people who are already on social assistance.

So, in fact, I do not know the numbers, but of those who have been put into positions, so far, the numbers given to me by the Minister of Social Services as recent as yesterday, is that 30 per cent of those placements are for people with the expanded criteria. Is it the intention for that kind of criteria to become the norm for Social Services in the normal Budget and in their normal program on an annual basis? The answer, to my knowledge, is no.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Fogo.

MR. WINSOR: A final supplementary, Mr. Speaker, to the Premier.

For a number of days, we have been trying to get information on this particular programme. I ask the Premier if he will undertake to have the appropriate ministers in each of the departments to inform the House of the number of jobs that have been created, the location, and the duration of each job, and will they be made available to this House in its next sitting?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: Mr. Speaker, I am sure, if they are here, they would make it available to him right now, today, perhaps, if he wants it. There is no trouble giving any information that is available. I do not have to direct ministers. All hon. members have to do is ask questions, the ministers will answer.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for St. Mary's - The Capes.

MR. HEARN: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker.

My question is to the Minister of Education. A few days ago, the Premier mentioned that he thought legislation would be brought in this session to bring together the Marine Institute and Memorial University. The following day, I believe, the minister confirmed this.

Seeing that the courses not leading to a degree will be transferred to the Cabot Institute, and all other courses will be transferred to Memorial University, will the minister tell us if the students who will be affiliated with Memorial University will be paying the same tuition fees as are now being paid by the regular students registered at Memorial University?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Education.

DR. WARREN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I would like to correct a little bit of information in the hon. member's preamble. No decisions have been made on which programs will be where. We are working out the details of where there is overlapping between the present Cabot Institute and the Marine college. There are some programmes which are duplicates, and eventually, we will decide where these are going to be. Fees, Mr. Speaker, will be determined in the same way they are now, depending on programmes. No proposal has been made or has been accepted, whereby the fees for non-degree programs would be the same as the fees charged by the University. These will be decided in due course.

MR. HEARN: A supplementary, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for St. Mary's - The Capes.

MR. HEARN: Mr. Speaker, the minister is evading the question. I mentioned courses being transferred to Cabot, which the minister knows is going to be done, that is the plan. But I asked him, Will those who will be affiliated with the University, in relation to degree-granting courses, be paying the same tuition fees as the students who are in the regular university programs?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Education.

DR. WARREN: Mr. Speaker, a year ago, actually more than that, in February, 1990, we issued a White Paper on the future of post-secondary education in this Province. This Government does not go from day to day, month to month, we try to look to the future.

Leadership it is called, vision; and one of the things we see happening, Mr. Speaker, is that, in this Province, the University, ultimately, will offer degrees in the area of Marine and Fisheries-related studies, in addition to all the other programmes that are now offered. When these degrees are determined, I am sure fees will be set in accordance with the requirements of the degree.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for St. Mary's - The Capes.

MR. HEARN: When I asked the question, Mr. Speaker, the President of Treasury Board said, yes, so I presume that is the answer, but, will the minister put it on record? Will the students who are being shuffled out of the Marine Institute into the University, be expected to pay the same tuition fees as the students who are presently in the regular university programmes, yes or no?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Education.

MR. WARREN: Mr. Speaker, I wish the hon. member would clarify his question. If he is talking about non-degree programmes, if they are part of the University, the fees will remain as at present with the normal increases. All fees are going to go up.

If degree programmes are developed in the future, the fees will be developed in accordance with the degree programme. I cannot now say that the degree programmes are going to charge x dollars. These fees will be determined at the time the degree programmes are developed.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Port de Grave.

MR. EFFORD: Mr. Speaker, I will defer, since there is only one minute left in Question Period.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. member cannot defer.

The hon. the Member for Green Bay.

MR. SIMMS: He cannot defer, if you don't want to ask, you don't.

MR. HEWLETT: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I have a question for the Minister of Mines and Energy.

There has been some talk, let us say, chatter, whatever, in industry and media circles as to whether or not all is well at the Come By Chance refinery, and I wonder if the minister could bring this up to date. Is all well at the Come By Chance refinery?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Mines and Energy.

DR. GIBBONS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. To the best of my knowledge, all is well; Come By Chance is, right now, about half-way through

an annual turnaround or maintenance review and I understand that will be completed next week.

They have changed supplier of crude oil; they have recently gone through a change of supplier from the previous supplier and I understand that there is crude available on site now from that new supplier, and will be there for when the start-up is due to occur again, as soon as the maintenance turnaround is over.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Green Bay, on a supplementary.

MR. HEWLETT: Mr. Speaker, a supplementary to the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations. I am wondering if the minister could report that, from the point of view of his portfolio, all is well at the Come By Chance refinery?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations.

MR. GRIMES: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I can just report to anything that has been brought to my attention. There are no outstanding difficulties other than anything that has normally been going on at Come By Chance.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Opposition House Leader. There is time for a quick question.

MR. MATTHEWS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I have a question for the Minister of Fisheries.

I am sure the Minister of Fisheries is aware of problems that have been experienced at the Belleoram fish plant, some snags with the lease of Daley Brothers, and operators since then. I am wondering if the minister could inform the House, whether or not he has looked seriously at trying to resolve the situation with regard to the lease, which I think is presently held by Daley Brothers at Belleoram, and if that matter will soon be resolved?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Fisheries.

MR. CARTER: Mr. Speaker, the plant in Belleoram has been leased on a number of occasions and thus far it has not been too successful. It is under a lease to a company and we have talked to the principals of that company to endeavour to get them to release their hold on the building; to date, we have not been too successful, but we are now negotiating with another company, and negotiations are ongoing with the people who have the lease on the building.

MR. SPEAKER: Question Period has expired.

Notices of Motion

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Government House Leader.

MR. BAKER: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

On behalf of the hon. the Minister of Justice, I give notice that I will on tomorrow ask leave to introduce a bill entitled, "An Act Respecting The Consolidation And Revision Of The Statutes Of Newfoundland."

As well, I given notice that I will on tomorrow ask leave to introduce a bill entitled, "An Act Respecting The Application And Effect Of Certain Acts Passed In The Present Session Of The Legislature Upon The Revised Statutes Of Newfoundland."

Finally, Mr. Speaker, I give notice that I will on tomorrow ask leave to introduce a bill entitled, "An Act To Remove Anomalies And Errors In The Statute Law."

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Health.

MR. DECKER: Mr. Speaker, I give notice that I will on tomorrow ask leave to introduce a bill entitled, "An Act To Amend The Hospitals Act, 1971."

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Education.

DR. WARREN: Mr. Speaker, I give notice that I will on tomorrow ask leave to introduce a bill entitled, "An Act Respecting Colleges Of Applied Arts, Technology And Continuing Education."

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Menihek.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. A. SNOW: Mr. Speaker, I give notice that I will on tomorrow ask leave to introduce the following resolution:

WHEREAS mining is the only industry in the resource sector subject to the payroll tax; and

WHEREAS minerals are a non-renewable resource and the economies of mining communities are vulnerable to the depletion of the resource;

BE IT RESOLVED that payroll tax revenues collected from the mining companies and from companies which service the mining industry be invested in a special fund, and that expenditure from the fund be directed to the diversification of the economies of the mining towns and the assistance to persons affected by the economic dislocation in the mining industry.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

Orders of the Day

MR. BAKER: Motion 3, Mr. Speaker.

Motion, the hon. the Minister of Municipal and Provincial Affairs to introduce a bill, "An Act To Amend The Urban And Rural Planning Act," carried. (Bill No. 45)

On motion, Bill No. 45, read a first time, ordered read a second time on tomorrow.

MR. BAKER: Motion 4, Mr. Speaker.

Motion, the hon. the Minister of Municipal and Provincial Affairs to introduce a bill, "An Act To Establish The St. John's Centennial Foundation," carried. (Bill No. 41)

On motion, Bill No. 41, read a first time, ordered read a second time on tomorrow.

MR. BAKER: Motion 5, Mr. Speaker.

Motion, the hon. the Minister of Municipal and Provincial Affairs to introduce a bill, "An Act To Revise And Consolidate The Law Respecting The Prevention Of Fire," carried. (Bill No. 53)

On motion, Bill No. 53, read a first time, ordered read a second time on tomorrow.

MR. BAKER: Motion 6, Mr. Speaker.

Motion, the hon. the Minister of Municipal and Provincial Affairs to introduce a bill, "An Act To Facilitate The Amalgamation Of Certain Municipal Authorities And Municipal Services In Relation To The Northeast Avalon Region," carried. (Bill No. 50)

On motion, Bill No. 50, read a first time, ordered read a second time on tomorrow.

MR. BAKER: Order 4, Mr. Speaker.

On motion, a bill, "An Act Respecting The Office Of The Auditor General And The Auditing Of The Public Accounts Of The Province," read a third time, ordered passed and its title be as on the Order Paper. (Bill No. 1)

MR. BAKER: Order 5, Mr. Speaker.

AN HON. MEMBER: Orders 5, 6, and 7?

MR. SPEAKER: Orders 5, 6, and 7, by leave?


On motion, the following bills, read a third time, ordered passed and their titles be as on the Order Paper:

"An Act To Ratify, Confirm And Adopt An Agreement Between The Government Of Canada And The Government Of The Province Respecting Taxation Of These Governments And Their Agencies." (Bill No. 8)

"An Act To Amend The Hearing Aid Dealers Act." (Bill No. 10)

"An Act To Amend The Optometry Act, 1981." (Bill No. 9)

MR. BAKER: Motion 2, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Finance.

DR. KITCHEN: Mr. Speaker, I wish to inform the House that I have received a message from His Honour The Lieutenant Governor.

MR. SPEAKER: To the hon. the Minister of Finance: "I, the Lieutenant-Governor of the Province of Newfoundland, transmit Supplementary Estimates of sums required for the Public Service of the Province for the year ending the 31st day of March, 1992, by way of Supplementary Supply and in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution Act, 1867, I recommend these Estimates to the House of Assembly."

Signed: James A. McGrath (Lieutenant-Governor)

On motion, that the House resolve itself into Committee of the Whole, Mr. Speaker left the Chair.

Committee of the Whole

MR. CHAIRMAN (L. Snow): Order, please!

Bill No. 44.

The hon. the Member for St. Mary's - The Capes.

MR. HEARN: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

A few days ago, when we were on this bill, the more we got into the different headings the more we realized the magnitude of the concerns that were there concerning some of the expenditures.

Perhaps, the one that highlighted discussion last day was the one on Municipal and Provincial Affairs, from project funding to community sport facilities, grants, and so on. However, there are a number of others, and the one I want to start on today, is the one on social services. Now, it is unfortunate that the minister is not here, but I am sure we can continue it some day when he is here.

In Question Period today, Mr. Chairman, the Member for Fogo talked about some of the problems being faced by people who were referred to go to work on some projects sponsored by the Department of Social Services. Some time ago, as a little bit of history, Government brought in $14 million, I believe was the amount, as an emergency job creation program. The major problem with it, of course, was that, in some cases, it was just making up for what they had taken away in the last Budget. This heading here, Social Services, certainly fits in there, because they are only replacing part of the amount axed from the community development projects that was usually there in the past few years to help create jobs for those who are less fortunate than many others who find work in the Province.

However, this year was an extremely bad year, not only for those who are always on the borderline of trying to find employment but for some long term workers. So the Government brings in a programme which they figure will cost around $14 million or $15 million and they talk about creating all these jobs. It is going to be, of course once again, fairness and balance right across the Province. People who are on social assistance will qualify and people who are on the borderline, people who have run out of social assistance, people who have never received social assistance, all will be able to go on these programmes.

So what happened, Mr. Chairman? Well, we are going to find out what happened one of these days when we get a list of the projects that were approved and we see where most of the money was spent. The same thing happened that has been happening ever since this Government took power, they looked after themselves. When we hear about them talking about fairness and balance, the facts and figures speak for themselves. Because there was never a government in the history of this Province that was more blatant in patronage than the present administration.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: (Inaudible).

MR. HEARN: I get a kick out of the person who is disrupting me, the Member for Port de Grave. Because if there was anybody who talks negatively about this Government more so than the people on this side it is the Member for Port de Grave.

Anyway, Mr. Chairman, a number of people who are social service recipients, who depend upon social assistance to keep them going, wanted to take advantage of this programme. Because when you go to work on these programmes you are actually out working. I mentioned yesterday when I was talking about the perhaps guaranteed income, that a lot of people want to sit home and take handouts from governments, whether it be the Federal Government or Provincial. Most Newfoundlanders have a sense of pride and want to work, even if it means going to work on programmes sponsored through the Department of Social Services.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: (Inaudible).

MR. HEARN: Mr. Chairman, there is a tremendous amount of noise. I cannot even hear myself.

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please!

MR. HEARN: Years ago when we had very little social assistance in the Province it was looked upon as dole, I guess from the word, it is sort of doling out or a handing out something to people who were really destitute. Most people who were in the work force would not even accept such a handout because it seemed as if somebody was doing them a favour. We have seen changes now in our Department of Social Services, and it is not looked upon as a department whereby you only go if you cannot find any - it is a department that is there to help people. Supposedly to help people. The Department of Social Services, to assist you in your different social needs, and that includes assisting you at a time when you just cannot make it on your own financially, economically.

So these programmes came out and people wanted to go to work so that they could at least better themselves somewhat from accepting the monthly cheque from the Department of Social Services. Most people who qualified went in, registered at the local offices, and in some cases were told: no, you know, you may be well down the list because there are people who are much worse off than yourself. But many of those who were legitimately qualified to go on these programmes were told: yes, you qualify, we are referring you to work on a certain project. These people went home, well pleased, knowing that they would be back to work within a few days. However, they did receive a call within a few days. It was to tell them: we are sorry, you cannot go to work on the project because all the money is used up.

Now, the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations when he was speaking today said that: this can happen. You know, sometimes in the haste, or there might be a couple of examples whereby this happened. I say to the Minister that there are many examples where it happened. Not a couple, or not a couple of dozen. We could probably say there may be more than a couple of hundred. There are all kinds of examples from all kinds of areas in the Province whereby people were actually referred. Not only did they sign up, thinking they were qualified, and then told they could not get a job - that might be logical. There may be more demands than the amount of money available to take so many people on. But when you are told, yes, you qualify and you are going on a certain project only to be called and told, sorry, we cannot put you on, this sometimes can also be understandable if it happens on a few occasions, but when it is widespread and blatant then we wonder where is the management in the entire project.

Something that is a lot more serious than that is the fact that in certain parts of the Province where the local Social Service offices applied for projects, or sent in ideas they had for local and regional organizations such as Rural Development Associations or councils sent in projects, immediately after the announcement was made they had been told: sorry, you do not qualify because we have no money left. They are told that after all the money has been allocated: not because you were not in early enough. They are basically being told - if they were told the truth they would be told: you do not qualify because you are not in a Liberal district.

In one district in this Province there are three local social welfare offices. One office did not get any money at all to spend on job creation programmes even though the need is great. The second office had projects in, the local or Regional Development Association in the area had projects in, and they were told: sorry, we have no money. The third office, however, did get lots of money, all kinds of money. The only thing about it, the people who were registered at this office from the Tory district were told: sorry, we made a mistake, you cannot go to work tomorrow as we told you, we are out of money. Yet the section of the office covered also a large section of a Liberal district. In that district, that section of the area covered by the office, people were lined up in droves being referred and going to work on the projects. Somebody told me it is like the old days when you lined up to go to work on the base. One fellow went in and signed up. He said they told him there was no job available for him. All the money was gone. And he said there was a bunch there from next door and just because they were across the line everyone was going to work. He said: What is wrong? What am I?' And the problem was he was a Tory and consequently he did not get a job.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. HEARN: And if you do not think it is factual then we will wait until the Premier brings in the list of projects, the people who went to work, the number of jobs created and the areas in which they were created, and then we will see whether or not what I am saying is factual. Now it will be interesting to see if the lists are doctored over the next day or so, but the point is I expect to see a flood of people from my area being hired this evening to offset the mistakes that have been made.

I do not know whether the gentlemen opposite know it or not, but what is happening certainly in the field of social services - I cannot speak for the other areas, we have not any forestry up there to be worried about. Municipal authorities of my area I know did not get any money to spend on job creation projects. They did not get any money period. Two of them have had to resign because they cannot even get a response from their phone calls to the Minister's office.

But on the social welfare projects people who live next door are lined up going to work, and people on the other side of the line are being told: sorry, we referred you but the money is used up. You cannot go to work, but the people over here can. The people who work for the department are themselves extremely concerned. They said they had never ever seen the like of it. The social workers have referred people because they met the qualifications, because they had been told they had x number of dollars to spend, they referred people to jobs and they were told that these people had to be called and told that they could not go to work because the money was spent. If that is not being blatant then -

AN HON. MEMBER: Shameful.

MR. HEARN: It is shameful. The President of Treasury Board says it is shameful, and I hope he calls the Minister of Social Services in and takes him across his knee - now, that would be something to see -and has a hard and fast chat with him. Because that is exactly what is happening in relation to the field of social services.

So when we are asked to approve $4.5 million to create jobs we would like to know where, we would like to know how many, we would like to know the qualifications, and we would like to know, of course, whether or not the money is being spent with fairness and balance. If it is, then we will say, a job well done. However, as of now the facts, I think, will speak for themselves.

There are a couple of other topics here that we would like to get into, Mr. Chairman, but I am sure there are others who want to speak, so we will wait a while.

MR. CHAIRMAN: The hon. the President of Treasury Board.

MR. BAKER: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

I was very interested in the comments of the Member for St. Mary's - The Capes. I have been expecting that at about this point in time they would start asking the usual questions concerning supplementary supply and the details of programmes and so on. I know about those things, Mr. Chairman, because I sat in Opposition for four years and we went through the same process, exactly the same process. The more things change the more they remain the same.

Mr. Chairman, there is one big difference this year - one big difference this year. In four years sitting in Opposition asking for details of supplementary supply, asking for details of programmes and so on, I do not think I got a single answer, not a single answer in four years. However, things changed today. Today there is going to be a flood of information, a veritable avalanche of information, specific details of projects, an avalanche of information to members opposite concerning the supplementary supply bill, an avalanche of information, something that in four years in Opposition I could not get. I could not get any details at all in four years.

Now then, there are two explanations actually, Mr. Chairman. The first explanation is that it is only right the Opposition should have it. That is the sensible approach, it is only right the Opposition should have it. The second reason is that in one particular instance in this supply bill - and I would like to very briefly run through it in terms of the general amounts. In terms of Fisheries, Forestry and Agriculture, the expenditures in Municipal and Provincial Affairs, and in Social Services, these expenditures are related primarily to the new programmes, the programmes that we started. These particular departments really do not have a problem, an urgency, in terms of pressures of time. They do not, because there are monies that can be transferred and we can wait for the next two or three weeks or a month until the supplementary supply bill gets through the House.

However, there is one lot of projects here under Environment and Lands that we really need approval of that money today. So, one of the reasons that the information is going to be given from all departments, in addition to the fact that it is only right to do it and the members have asked for it, is because of that particular segment of the programme administered by Environment and Lands having to do with environmental cleanup grants and subsidies to organizations around the Province. In that particular case we need the money approved now because commitments have been made to development associations and so on out of that $500,000 that we cannot hand over to them until the supply bill actually goes through the House. The reason this is different from the other departments is that in Environment and Lands there is no other money to transfer in from other votes. There is simply no extra money at this point in the year in Environment and Lands.

So, two reasons why you are going to get all the information: One, because it is right to give it; and the second because I would like to have the supplementary supply bill, especially the allocation to Environment and Lands, through today so that we can give the money to these development associations tomorrow. It is as simple as that.

So, Mr. Chairman, for the remainder of the afternoon I expect that my colleagues will be extremely anxious to get up and go through project by project, amount of money by amount of money, exactly what has been happening in the response programme. Mr. Chairman, you are going to be impressed, you are going to be really impressed.

The speed with which the programme was put into action, the speed with which thousands of people have been put to work, is absolutely amazing. The departmental officials have been very excellent in terms of doing their job and getting the programmes in place. Members opposite have had some criticism about one department, Social Services. I can tell Members opposite that Social Services was very quick in getting a lot of the money allocated simply because they had on file from their regular programme, lots and lots - as a matter of fact, enough to spend maybe $8 million or $10 million extra. They had on file applications to their regular community development programme. So they could very quickly get into gear. I would like to congratulate them and the other departments for doing such a superb job at very quickly responding to some of the needs that are out there.

So, Mr. Chairman, I am sure that between now and 4:00 p.m. or 4:30 p.m. Members on this side will gladly give all the information that Members opposite want, and be very happy to give it, all of it. It is an indication of the kind of attitude that we believe should be followed in the House of Assembly.

MR. CHAIRMAN: The hon. the Member for Menihek.

MR. A. SNOW: I am pleased, Mr. Chairman, to have the opportunity to speak to Bill 44, and respond to the remarks made by the hon. Member for Gander, the President of the Treasury Board.

Mr. Chairman, this Government since they have come to office and campaigned on a slogan of 'a vote for a real change,' I believe it was -

SOME HON. MEMBERS: (Inaudible).

MR. A. SNOW: - and fairness and balance. I have been reminded by the hon. Minister of Finance and the Member, that such fairness and balance, they have campaigned on that.

Now, Mr. Chairman, I want to speak specifically about my district, about the fairness and balance that has occurred since that day, April 20, I believe it was, 1989. One of the first things that occurred was the public debate in western Labrador about commitments made by the then Premier of the Province, Tom Rideout, and the Leader of the Opposition, Mr. Wells. Commitments made during the election with regard to the establishment of the Labrador West campus of the Labrador Community College, but more specifically the first-year university programme to be located and set up in western Labrador.

The hon. Minister of Education announced that they would not be establishing a first year university programme in western Labrador. After a concerted effort, led by local citizenry, the Premier forced the Minister to live up to the commitment made by him while he was leader of the Opposition, and we indeed do have a first year university programme being offered through the Labrador West campus of the Labrador Community College in Labrador City. It is a very good facility, a facility that is being made available to residents of western Labrador who for years had not had the opportunity of attending a first year university programme and staying at home in Labrador City or Wabush.

As a matter of fact we are getting people to relocate from other areas of the Province, moving in there to attend the school. They have a tremendous faculty, a good facility, and I want to commend the Government for coming to the help of the residents of western Labrador with our insistence and the insistence of course of local citizens who lobbied and pressured this Government into living up to their commitment. But some of the other things that have occurred in western Labrador since that day, April 20th, 1989; I will not list them in chronological order and neither will they be in order of importance, I will just list them and talk about them as they come into mind. One of which is the closure of a Motor Vehicle Registration office, an office that had been set up there - I believe back in the early 70s - and local people could make use of this facility to be able to register their motor vehicles. In the cost saving measure the Government said: well, we are going to make it more efficient, we are going to shut down the one in Wabush and shut down the one in Clarenville and make it more efficient for the people of Labrador and the people of Newfoundland.

Now, Mr. Chairman, they may have saved some money. I think the saving was around $30,000 in the case of the office in Wabush, but the amount of aggravation that has caused the people of Labrador City and Wabush, the $30,000 is ridiculous, Mr. Chairman, considering the millions and millions of dollars that are hauled out of the people's pockets in western Labrador, and this Government, this regime saved a paltry $30,000, by shutting down that office which provided a tremendous service to the people of western Labrador. They conducted approximately, I think it is something like 30,000 transactions in a period of a year.

Now, Mr. Chairman, that is a tremendous amount of local service to be offered to a community and that service is no longer available. You would be amazed at the amount of aggravation that causes local citizens with regard to licensing their vehicles or acquiring drivers permits, that type of thing that the Motor Vehicle Registration office provided for years to these people who produce more wealth for this Province per capita than any other electoral district in this Province, Mr. Chairman. The miners in western Labrador do that.

I can quote where the Minister of Finance has said that very same thing in his speeches I believe to the Board of Trade in St. John's or somewhere in Halifax, and the people of western Labrador are very proud of that. But, Mr. Chairman, what they would like to have is fairness and balance; they did not want to see the $870,000 cut that was given to the Captain William Jackman Memorial Hospital which meant they had to cut back service. They did not want to see that, they wanted to have an improved service; they did not want to see their service cut back in western Labrador to the extent that this regime has seen fit to do, because it is unfair.

The Government here does not recognize the function, the specific functions that that hospital does differently in my district than it does in the other districts in this Island portion of the Province. We live so far away from another hospital; it is very expensive for people to get to other areas of this Province, more specifically to the Island portion of the Province from western Labrador than it is from a place like St. Anthony or Corner Brook or Deer Lake. So, I do not believe that they specifically recognized the importance that should have been placed on the geographic considerations, if we can call them that.

We see million of dollars dragged out of western Labrador in the form of not contributing the amount of municipal grants that would have been accruing to the towns of Labrador City and Wabush, if the previous grant structure had been left in place. I believe the Town of Labrador City is going to lose in the vicinity of $2 million over the next three or four years. If the previous grant structure had been left in place the Town of Wabush, indeed would probably lose in the vicinity of around three-quarters of a million dollars-

MR. GRIMES: That is the only place that happened, was it?

MR. A. SNOW: - and the hon. Member for Exploits has suggested that, that indeed is not the only place that that is happening and I will agree with him, that it is just not my district that has been treated unfairly; there are thousands of people being exploited by his lack of concern -

AN HON. MEMBER: Yes, exploited, good word; exploited.

MR. A. SNOW: I wonder if that is where the naming of his district is coming from ?... because of the exploiting of the people, the exploiting of the people that is occurring since that day, April 20, 1989. There are thousands of communities being affected in this Province by the changing of the municipal grant structure. I can remember being up at one of our local clubs in western Labrador at a function.

AN HON. MEMBER: The Kiwanis Club.

MR. A. SNOW: No, the Labrador West Caribou Hunter's Association Club. The name of that club could probably deceive you in one sense but it represents a rod and gun club type of mentality person, if you will. We are concerned about fish, animals, and wildlife so we get together up there. I am a member of the club and proud to say I am a member of the club.

AN HON. MEMBER: Are you for or against gun control?

MR. A. SNOW: Mr. Chairman, one hon. Member has asked whether or not I am for or against gun control. I am in favour of a lot of the things this club is articulating, as a matter of fact, asking this Government to change some of the fishing regulations in this Province and how they affect the tourist industry in western Labrador. The fishing regulations have to be changed. I knew that would catch the Minister of Development's ears because this club -

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please!

The hon. Member's time is up.

The hon. the Member for Port de Grave.

MR. EFFORD: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

I will be over next week.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. EFFORD: Mr. Chairman, I want to take a few minutes to talk on this particular bill that is before the House of Assembly. In relation to the taxpayers of this Province and what they contribute towards this House of Assembly and the salaries paid to the people, which we have to be very careful of in this day and age because of the shortage of money in the Province, especially for the essential needs, especially health, education, and social services of which I was Minister for a couple of years before I was removed from that position. Nevertheless the problems in social services remain there even though I am no longer there. It is incumbent on every Member in this House of Assembly to be honourable in his position in the House of Assembly when it comes to the rules and regulations set down by this Legislature and the effect it would have on the taxpayers of this Province. I refer particularly to the Morgan Report. It is too bad that the part-time Member left his seat. I would have hoped that he would have stayed but I guess he knew I was getting up so he ran out. I want to refer to Page 34 of the Morgan Report.

AN HON. MEMBER: Is that a part-time job?

MR. EFFORD: I do not know who he is. 'We re-emphasize in closing, the fact that to be a Member of the House of Assembly today and to fulfil the functions required both to the Legislature and the constituents is a full-time occupation.' Mr. Chairman, I have been a Member since 1985 and I can assure you that it is a full-time occupation. In fact you must spend day and night, seven days a week in order to look after your constituents. On Page 13 it very clearly says that: a Member needs to contribute all of his or her time and efforts to the task and if there are Members who because of business or professional reasons cannot devote themselves full time to their responsibility they should be honour bound to inform the Speaker what proportion of their time they can devote to their duties. Their indemnity and their non-taxable allowance should be prorated accordingly.

Every single year, Mr. Chairman, since I became a Member of this House of Assembly I reported my investments, what monies I have in what firms, how much stocks I have, and it is printed on the front page of the Evening Telegram or some newspaper every single year. I was told to do that by this House of Assembly, by this Legislature, and I followed that, and I would assume that every other hon. Member in this House of Assembly would do the same thing. Now, jokingly a lot of people accuse me of being the richest man in the House of Assembly but I do not mind the jokes.


AN HON. MEMBER: But aren't you?

MR. EFFORD: I am not the richest but I am also not the poorest.

No, I am not the poorest either. But I tell you, in checking with the Speaker's office, I have found out, beyond a doubt, that there has been no member - no member in this House of Assembly - who has reported anything to do with the Speaker in regard to their occupation otherwise outside of this House of Assembly. So we basically go on the assumption that every MHA in this House of Assembly is a full-time member. We go under that assumption unless we have information otherwise.

If, for argument sake - if, i-f - if for argument sake, there is a member, or members, earning monies, not through interest or not through investments, because he does not work at that, but earning monies out working in a firm on a day-to-day basis, then he or she would be assumed to not be a full-time member. It is only an assumption, a hypothetical statement, if I were running a business, then I could not be a full-time member. If I were running a business, and I were not a full-time member, and the Morgan Report very clearly says than I should report that to the House of Assembly, to the Speaker, to the Chairman of the Internal Economy Commission. That has been here in this Legislature for two years. Every member, he or she, should know, must know, the rules of the Morgan Report. Therefore, if I know the rules of the Morgan Report, and I am working in a business, and I am not spending full-time as an MHA, and I am clearly, clearly, intentionally not reporting it, I know what I am doing, I am receiving monies under false pretences. That is a criminal offence, number one. It is inappropriate for any member of this House of Assembly to do that. It is not honourable for a Member of the House of Assembly to do that. But apart from what is expected of a member, what the appropriate or inappropriate action is, it is a criminal offence to receive money under false pretences, intentionally, knowing full well that it is the law.

I am shocked to know, Mr. Chairman, that no member of this House of Assembly - and we are setting the examples for the rest of the Province - I represented fishermen this year who, forced through darkness and forced through fog, had to try to save their full year's investments, their full lifetime's investments - not full year - their full lifetime's investments, and sneak around the fog to try to get some fish. They were accused by people in this House of Assembly, some of the members who I suspect are working otherwise, of breaking the law.

A person goes into a shop and picks up an article and does not pay for it, and he walks outside; that is breaking the law. A person takes something belonging to somebody else; that is stealing. That is breaking the law. Are we saying that Members of the House of Assembly are exempt, and can do as he or she wishes with the taxpayers money; fill their pockets to their own delight, and they are not breaking the law? They are not breaking the law? Is that what we are saying? We are exempt from breaking the law? We can do what we feel like? You hear the jokes on the street that all politicians are crooks. I am beginning to wonder if that is an actual fact.

What do I publicize my investments every year for? I do not get any great pleasure in people making statements on the street, and people saying that when you go to look for (inaudible), look who you are; you do not need anything. You have lots of money. You do not need this. You do not need that. So, you put up with that sort of thing, but it is my responsibility. It is unfortunate that a politician has to place (inaudible) and everything he has personally and privately is public, but you know that before you get elected. You know, when you run for public office, what is expected of you. You know that you have to make that thing publicized. When this Morgan Report was printed, Mr. Chairman, and was commissioned by the House of Assembly, it was commissioned for a reason, to make sure, and to ensure that Members of this House of Assembly got what was rightfully theirs; got compensated for the job which they were doing in fulfilling their position as a Member of the House of Assembly, not only financially, but in the things that he or she needed to do that job. It was done for that reason. But it was also done for another reason. It was also done to protect - to protect - the taxpayers of this Province; to put some ground rules down, to put some laws down that would ensure that every person elected to the House of Assembly would do the honourable thing and make sure that he or she did not do anything to conflict with the laws of the land and the laws of the House of Assembly. And, Mr. Chairman, that is the clear thing.

Now I am not a lawyer by any means, I have no legal expertise whatsoever. I hardly know about paying a parking ticket. I know that I have to go with the money, but as far as the legal implications, I do not even bother with it. I have no expertise there whatsoever. But I know I can read, and section 362 of the Criminal Code clearly deals with the false pretences and what false pretences constitutes in the way of breaking the laws - section 362. And I see heads on the other side, I see the way they are looking, and there is no reason for anyone to look dismayed or shocked. Nobody has anything to be afraid of or guilty of whatsoever. I am only making a statement. I have not accused any individual. I have not accused one individual. I have not named an individual. The only thing I said in the press the other day when the press were trying to get me to name someone, I said they referred to one individual, one Member on the other side, and I said, 'Sure, I have heard other names.'

I referred to the Member for St. John's East. His name was mentioned in the press last year. That same Member requested that Members on this side of the House of Assembly would make public their expense account because he tried to say his expense account was very, very small and he wanted everybody else to publicize their expense account. He did not tell them that Members on both sides got so much money every year to buy a computer and they spent that money to buy a computer, but his computer was given to him by the House of Assembly. He never had to buy it out of his expense account, so he came off looking good by saving $5,000.

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please!

The hon. Member's time is up.

MR. EFFORD: By leave, Mr. Chairman.

MR. CHAIRMAN: No leave.

AN HON. MEMBER: A good speech John. That was very informative.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible) another minute.

MR. EFFORD: Another minute?

MR. CHAIRMAN: The hon. the Member for Port de Grave by leave.

MR. EFFORD: Just to clue up, Mr. Chairman.

So, Mr. Chairman, it is very clear. Next Wednesday when the House of Assembly re-opens I will be reconvening in the House in Question Period hopefully - I will try to get recognized. If not on Wednesday it will be Thursday, and if not Thursday it will be Friday, but I can assure this hon. House that I will stand until I get recognized, and I will bring out to this hon. House of Assembly exactly what is happening in this House of Assembly and let the chips fall where they may.

MR. CHAIRMAN: The hon. the Member for Torngat Mountains.

MR. WARREN: Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.

I want to continue on Bill 44, Mr. Chairman. It is most interesting that there is one department in particular, the Department of Development. Today in The Evening Telegram I noticed that the Minister of Development came out - and I would like to quote what was quoted in the Evening Telegram today, what the Minister is alleged to have said. The first headlines say: Furey denies withholding report on Government's Labrador stores. It goes on down and it comes to: But Mr. Furey said Mr. Warren's statements are just another example of his usual misrepresentation of the facts. He said the general contents of the study were released in March and many of its recommendations were implemented. In Phase One, the Minister said, six options for the future of the stores were recommended. The most acceptable was the co-operative.

Now, Mr. Chairman, let me go ahead and say to the Minister that the Minister has not told the truth to The Evening Telegram.


MR. WARREN: The Minister did not tell the truth to The Evening Telegram because, Mr. Chairman. In the report, Phase one does not mention one thing about public consultation, and the Minister of Development did not tell the truth to The Evening Telegram, I will repeat again, Mr. Chairman. He said Phase Two: a government committee made up of representatives from the Department of Development, Enterprise Newfoundland and Labrador in the Labrador Region, the Economic Recovery Commission and Intergovernmental Affairs. Now, Mr. Chairman, the minister could not have read the report, because Phase 2 does not mention anything about this committee as the minister said! So, after all, the release that I made public the day before yesterday is factual, because the minister is not following what the report says. In fact, Phase 2 says: `A key task force required in progressing towards this objective will be the establishment of a transition team headed by a third party.' Headed by a third party - outside of Government altogether!

Now, what he has done is, he has composed a Committee of Government. So you can see the minister is not doing anything that is in the report. What does it say? It says, `identify parties interested in assisting with the programme; examine the feasibility of establishing local advisory committees; select a member of each local advisory committee; organize a discussion of new ownership; meet with the union.' Mr. Chairman, let me just tell the House what happened yesterday. Now, here is how sneaky and slimy the minister was in the last twenty-four hours.

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please! Order, please!

The hon. member is using unparliamentary language and I ask him to withdraw it.

MR. WARREN: Mr. Chairman, if I used any words that were unparliamentary I definitely withdraw them, no problem about that at all.

I will say, just look how crafty the minister was yesterday evening. I got a call last night, I say to the minister, from my district, about the Government store report. All of a sudden, a person in one particular community said, `Mr. Lawrence O'Brien was here yesterday, and he told me that he has been asked to check out the future of the Government stores. Since I brought the report out, in twenty-four hours, the minister goes and gets one of the members of his staff to go to the Coast, just as quickly as that.

Now, the report was not released in March. But I advise the minister, and I have no doubt the minister will do likewise - I have eight copies here now, and this report is going to be released to all of the media today. Because I think they need to have this report to know what it contains.


MR. WARREN: Now, Mr. Chairman, let me say to my hon. colleague, the Minister of Development - and I want to be a bit complimentary to the minister, this time, because I believe that this report does have good recommendations in it. But, it is no good to have the recommendations in there when the report says it should take eighteen months for those stores to be turned over to a co-operative, if the consultation process is carried out.

The Labrador Inuit Association has been asking the minister's office, ever since March, for a copy of this report, and his office has refused to give it.

Back in August, the minister said, and was quoted in the famous "Evening Telegram", that shortly he would be taking the report to Cabinet.

Now, how could he say that he had started on the report back in March when Cabinet had not decided in August? And, apparently, Cabinet has not decided yet. So the report, apparently, has not been sanctioned by Cabinet. But, I tell the minister this, that each and every person in my district where those five stores are located does know by now what is contained in that report.

A few days ago, the minister looked across at me and said, You got the report illegally. I think that was the comment the minister made. Now, I say to the minister, when that report was delivered to me, it was in a brown paper bag, almost like the $50,000 that was delivered to the Confederation Building in brown paper bags. Unfortunately, the person involved is no longer employed, because he would have been fired, anyhow, so he is gone.

I want to say that this report does contain recommendations that need to be talked through with the people in the five different communities. Hopefully, the minister will see fit to make sure that the report is implemented as efficiently and as quickly as possible. Subsequently, then, we can see those stores operating more efficiently.

I say to my colleagues opposite, until we get the list of all the projects from the Departments of Municipal Affairs, Environment and Lands and Social Services, we will not let Bill 44 go through.

Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.

MR. CHAIRMAN: The hon. the Minister of Municipal and Provincial Affairs.

MR. GULLAGE: Mr. Chairman, I welcome the opportunity to make a few brief comments on this bill in Supplementary Supply. Previously approved, of course, under the Estimates, was a little over $1 million, which would include community water service districts, and also under recreation capital grants, some $1.7 million. So, altogether, we previously had approved some $1.9 million, in that vicinity - ballpark figures - between community water services and recreation capital grants. We were fortunate to add to that, under supplementary supply, some $1 million, which would incorporate both community water services and recreation grants.

I am pleased to be able to announce that in Labrador, specifically, which would interest the Member for Torngat who just spoke, we have already announced the spending for Labrador. Just to give you some indication, I can give you the detail. In Nain, we are constructing a 100-metre shooting range, $15,000, 70/30. Labour is over $10,000 there, thirty-eight person weeks in that project.

In Makkovik, in the bowling lanes area, we are repairing the roof, $15,000, and, again, there are thirty-eight person weeks. The labour cost is $10,500, and the materials, $4,500.

In Charlottetown, we are doing renovations to the rec centre, which is also $15,000, with thirty-eight person weeks; Pinsent's Arm, completing the recreation centre, $10,000. Again, $7,000 of that is labour, $3,000 materials, twenty-five person weeks; In St. Lewis, we are completing an outdoor rink, $10,000, $7,000 of which is labour, $3,000 materials, with twenty-five person weeks.

In Lodge Bay, repairing doors and painting the rec centre, $10,000, twenty-five person weeks; West St. Modeste, playground equipment and a trail - trail work, $15,000, thirty-eight person weeks; L'Anse-au-Loup, concrete pool and outdoor rink, $15,000, thirty-eight person weeks. The regional board, itself for the region, repairing the Zamboni and painting the arena, $15,000, thirty-eight person weeks; Happy Valley - Goose Bay, providing some dollars, $15,000, to clear the Snow Goose Ski Slopes, thirty-eight person weeks; In Hopedale, upgrading the outdoor rink, $15,000, with thirty-eight person weeks.

So, altogether, of approximately $1 million, assuming we do a 50-50 breakdown of the $1 million available between community water services and recreation, we are spending, in Labrador, $150,000. So I think that is a major contribution to recreation and badly needed projects in communities. Looking at that list of communities, they all badly need the work involved and certainly badly need the projects, because they have been prioritized. We have already made this announcement, and I can assure you, it is being well received by the people of Labrador.

I welcome the opportunity of making these few brief comments on work that we have announced so far and, a little later, as we announce more projects, I will be happy to announce those to the House, as well.

AN HON. MEMBER: Table it.

MR. GULLAGE: Yes, I can table this.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

MR. CHAIRMAN: The hon. the Member for Fogo.

MR. WINSOR: Mr. Chairman, the minister has just confirmed in spades what we suspected had happened in those projects. I just made some notes going through. I see there was some funding for Nain and some for Makkovik.

AN HON. MEMBER: How much?

MR. WINSOR: Fifteen thousand dollars for each one. But then, we go on down the list, Pinsent's Arm, St. Lewis, Lodge Bay, West St. Modeste and a number of other places, and I think they may all be in Eagle River district - a great number of them, two are in the district of Torngat Mountains. Now, I might have missed one at the end because I was trying to write them down. Mr. Chairman, it is very obvious what has been going on, when the minister has chosen only to release funding for the Labrador districts.

Now, the minister said there was $1.75 million for community water services. We would also be interested to find out how that money was spent. Perhaps, the Member for Gander, who, I think, got a fair chunk of that money -


MR. WINSOR: Mr. Chairman, the Member for Gander did quite well out of that $1.75 million that was allocated last spring for community water services to a town in his district, to the east of Gander. He did quite well out of that money. Perhaps the member, when he gets up, will tell us what portion of that money -


MR. WINSOR: Now, Mr. Chairman, perhaps he can tell us what portion of the money went there.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. WINSOR: Yes, of course, because we were fair and forthright in dealing with people.

Now, Mr. Chairman, we want that list. Since the minister wants to table this, perhaps he should show us where the $1.75 million went throughout the district.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible) program.


MR. WINSOR: No, no, no. The President of Treasury Board was not present. The minister said, We are adding $500,000 to the previously committed $1.75 million. Now, we have never seen a listing of where the $1.75 million went.

MR. BAKER: (Inaudible) the bill.

MR. WINSOR: No, it has nothing - except the minister referred to it, so I have to refer to what the minister said. Now, the President of Treasury Board is uncomfortable, and I wouldn't wonder that he is uncomfortable if he knows what I know about the money that was allocated under water community services. Let me tell you, what was spent throughout the Province was not in fair proportion compared to what was spent in the minister's district.

Now, that is not to say that the community of Benton did not deserve some money for water and sewer. They have terrible water and sewer problems there and have had them for a number of years.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. WINSOR: He got more than $50,000.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible) he said.

MR. WINSOR: He said - I know different, though.

The minister went on to say that we spent - this is going to bring up nearly $1.7 million spent on community sports facilities. Now, you would almost believe that the minister approved $1.7 million, last year, for community recreation facilities. Now, Mr. Chairman, he did not approve one cent, not one dime; those were ongoing commitments that had been made three, four or five years ago, not one dollar in the last two years. This year, 1992, is the first time that there have been applications sent to municipality recreation commissions throughout this Province, inviting their submissions, the first time, Mr. Chairman, since this Administration took office, that this has occurred. And I might add that some of the guidelines are pretty ludicrous, too. Mr. Chairman, I don't know where they built outdoor rinks, I don't know what kind they have built, but I tell you that no child in Newfoundland will skate on a rink for which you are going to have estimated costs of $30,000. You would not even put a light on a rink for $30,000, let alone build one. A total cost of $30,000 for a skating rink is in his guidelines.


MR. WINSOR: It is in the new guidelines sent out to communities. They have to come up with 25 per cent, up to a maximum of $30,000 funding from Government.

Now, Mr. Chairman, we could go on with a considerable -

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible) in Labrador.

MR. WINSOR: Yes, we know it is only a list of projects in Labrador. Do you know what I suspect we are getting here, Mr. Chairman, a sting operation, another sting operation, because there are reasons why that list is not revealed, and we are waiting. It is supplementary supply and you may have to wait a little longer, maybe until next Wednesday, if that list is not -

MR. SIMMS: The Government House Leader just told me that all of the projects have been approved.

MR. WINSOR: They have all been approved. What about the $5 million in social services?

AN HON. MEMBER: What about all the recreation (inaudible)?

MR. WINSOR: What about the $5 million in social services?

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. WINSOR: That is just in recreation, oh, yes, we know, only in recreation, but the environment ones should be coming, because we know -

AN HON. MEMBER: Is that all that has been spent in recreation?

MR. WINSOR: We did not get anything on water services. The minister's department keeps saying that they don't have them approved, yet the minister's officials, on October 9, said applications had to be in the next day, because programs had to start immediately, since, they said, they wanted to do it before the snow came. Now, Mr. Chairman, that was over three weeks ago and the minister has yet to announce publicly - we do not know what is happening behind the scenes in some Liberal districts as to what announcements have been made. We know about $300,000 in Labrador that he announced some time ago, and he just announced $110,000, so there is another $200,000 or so that the Member for Eagle River knows about, that we have not been able to get access to here in this House, Mr. Chairman.

MR. DUMARESQUE: (Inaudible).

MR. WINSOR: Now, the Member for Eagle River says he can give it and I have no doubt that he can, because, according to this list, the bulk of it went to his district, anyway. So, there is no doubt about it, he can provide the list, having seen what we have just seen here.

MR. SIMMS: Are we going to get the rest of the lists when they are ready?

MR. WINSOR: Mr. Chairman, the Government House Leader made the commitment some time ago that the total list of the money allocated would be provided this evening. Now, it is getting late in the afternoon -

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. WINSOR: What is that?

MR. SIMMS: That is under the $14 million dollar programme he is talking about, now.

MR. WINSOR: It is the total $14 million programme we are looking at.

AN HON. MEMBER: That is what we (inaudible) the programme. That is only half of it, as I understand it.

MR. SIMMS: The water is.

MR. WINSOR: That is half of that programme, $110,000.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. SIMMS: (Inaudible) from the recreation portion.

MR. WINSOR: Yes, but he only named - just let me see the list.

AN HON. MEMBER: It is all from Labrador.

MR. WINSOR: Yes, it is $110,000, the minister said; the total comes to $110,000.

MR. SIMMS: How much was approved for recreation? Is $110,000 all that was approved? Is that all that is going to be approved?

AN HON. MEMBER: Is that all that is going to be approved for recreation for the whole Province?

MR. BAKER: This is not Question Period. We will answer all this.

MR. WINSOR: Mr. Chairman, this is of vital concern.


AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible) will give you the answers now.

MR. WINSOR: This is a farce, Mr. Chairman.

MR. SIMMS: The minister will answer it.

Okay, the minister is going to answer. I will defer to the minister.

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please!

The hon. the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations.

MR. GRIMES: Mr. Chairman, as the President of Treasury Board indicated earlier in this debate, in Committee, we would like to provide a substantial amount of information regarding the expenditures that are outlined in Bill 44, Supplementary Supply, particularly as it relates to the Emergency Employment Response Programme. I will just clarify a couple of things that have been discussed and brought up by the previous speaker, before, in the absence of the Minister of Social Services, I take this portion of the allotted time to discuss, in some detail, the social services component.

The list tabled by my colleague, the Minister of Municipal and Provincial Affairs, outlined, if you take the totals, I believe, $150,000 in terms of recreation grants for Labrador. These have been allocated early. In our co-ordination of the programme, we wanted to get projects on the ground in Labrador, because of weather conditions and timing and everything else, so we asked the minister, in his department, to prioritize the funding of projects in Labrador.

In the minister's department, there is $1 million total for the Emergency Employment Response Program in Municipal and Provincial Affairs; the intention is that it be fifty/fifty, half for recreation and related programs and half for local service district water services and those kinds of things. Again, there may have to be some flexibility depending on what it is we can deliver and I have asked the Minister of Municipal and Provincial Affairs, other than the Labrador component, again, to wait a little while so that, along with the little bit of money that we have in my department, between us, we can actually fill in the gaps in terms of looking at where the money has been allocated through Social Services, Forestry and Agriculture and Environment and Lands and we will try to fill in as many gaps as we can with the remaining $2 million dollars.

MR. SIMMS: The remainder of the funds allocated to his department have not yet been approved without (inaudible).

MR. GRIMES: We have been looking at them; they have been assessed and re-assessed and we fully expect that within the next week or so we will have all of it done. And, at the time, as the President of Treasury Board indicated, we would like to be in a position to present to the legislature, to the House of Assembly, a list of the projects approved in each department, how many projects, how many jobs if we can identify that specifically, how many person weeks of work and also how many individuals were positively affected and assisted by this program.

MR. SIMMS: You will give us a list today, from all four departments, of those things approved, is that correct?

MR. GRIMES: As many as we can, we will indicate to the legislature in the time remaining in this debate. On that basis, I would like to provide, if I could, some preliminary information, at least, from the Department of Social Services. There are a couple of things I would like to point out in relation to this.

First of all, the initial indication when we made the release on October 4th and announced the Emergency Response Program, was that we would fund social services an additional $5 million for community development programs, because they could identify them fairly quickly and they are projects that we could put in place almost immediately.

As we went through the projects and also found that we were having a great deal of success, particularly in Forestry and Agriculture and with Environmental projects in putting projects on the ground and in action right away - and the minister, I am sure, in this debate, if given the opportunity, will indicate projects that are up and running and have been, some for as many as two weeks now, with people employed and working, and how many persons have been impacted and so on - they, because they have had experiences in previous years delivering those programs, were first off the mark along with social services and the community development programs.

Just to point out a couple of things, because it has been raised, and it is a little disappointing, I guess, to see the inference that some hon. members would suggest there are political overtones to decisions that are made here -


MR. GRIMES: The hon. the Member for Fogo indicates that the list provided for Labrador shows that, which is the furthest thing from the truth. You have to remember that in Torngat Mountains, the smallest district in the Province, with only six communities, two of the six were given funding out of that Labrador money from recreation, in terms of Municipal and Provincial Affairs.

In Employment and Labour Relations, in the $1 million that is there for short-term make work projects, in the department of which I am minister, which will not be tabled today because it is not in the Supplementary Supply Bill - we are using monies already there; it is not related to this bill - in fact, we have covered four of the other communities. One is also already approved under Fisheries response. The only one we know of, to date, in Torngat Mountains, where there is no project identified to be funded, is Davis Inlet, and mainly because, so far, we know of no request. In most cases, the members for the districts have come forward, along with constituents and with development associations and councils, and so on, with bountiful requests. For some reason, there has been none for Davis Inlet. Each of the other communities in Torngat Mountains has been taken care of, in one department or the other, with at least one program in the community. The same thing cannot be said to be true for Eagle River, where there are twenty-one communities. Maybe half of those might be taken care of, but that is all.

Let me deal for a few minutes, if I could, Mr. Chairman, with social services. Just to give an overview, first of all, up to the latest report this morning, there are some 129 projects approved in social services, providing job placements for 1,851 individuals. To date, well in excess of 300 people have actually already started work, and over the life of the project, over the next ten or twelve weeks or so, the other 1,500 will go to work and qualify in one form or another for assistance throughout the remainder of the winter. The difficulty with that is, through the organization in the regional offices, that allocation totals a little bit more at the present time than the $4.5 million asked for in this bill, so we have asked the minister, again, as we continue to monitor this programme, to go back and rearrange a couple of the projects to bring it back to the $4.5 million, because that is all he has authority to spend.

In relation to remarks made earlier about some kind of political overtones associated with this, it is true that there are half a dozen of the regional offices that did not have any of their projects approved. The minister is checking into it, as to why that occurred. The initial expectation is that, because of the case loads within those offices, and the work load, they were a little later than many of the other offices in getting their community development projects in. In fact, the monies were largely allocated up to the total of the $4.5 million. As I indicated, we are slightly over that now, and trying to move back to the number which is permitted to be spent. Strangely enough, though, the suggestion was that in those areas they would all be - I call them Progressive Conservative districts, but members on the opposite side refer to them as Tory districts, so I guess I can say that, too. But they were suggesting that all those could be attributed to being whether you are sort of Liberal, Tory, or whatever. I might point out that in the Western region, for example, in Flowers Cove - and I am never too up-to-date on this map as to where all the stuff is, whether it is Liberal, PC, or anything else, because that is not a consideration in our decision-making, but Flowers Cove is in a Liberal district, I believe - in Flowers Cove, there were no projects approved. St. Anthony has zero, I do not know what happened there. I guess, if we were doing a patronage thing, we did not do a very good job of it. There are others. If we look in an area of the Province that is near and dear to myself, I think if we were going to do something with patronage and pork barrelling, I would ask the minister to do a little better job than this, because Botwood, which is in the district that I represent, has one project approved, and Grand Falls, a district up the road, represented by the Leader of the Opposition, has three.


MR. GRIMES: Three projects have been approved in social services.

MR. SIMMS: Do you know which ones they are?

MR. GRIMES: I will get to the details of that in just a second.

If, in fact, the minister were going to be involved in some kind of blatant pork barrelling or patronage, I would ask him to do a lot better job than this.

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please!

MR. SIMMS: Mr. Chairman, on a point of order.

Is the minister saying there are three projects, under social services, approved for the District of Grand Falls or approved for the Grand Falls - Windsor office? Because it is Grand Falls - Windsor office, these days.

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please!

There is no point of order, it is a point of clarification, I guess.

The hon. the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations.

MR. GRIMES: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

As the Member for Grand Falls and the Leader of the Opposition know, of course, the regional office in Grand Falls covers the Grand Falls - Windsor area, as well as Bishop's Falls, in the district of Exploits.

In fact, the three projects that are approved through that office, at this point in time, are for some interdepartmental support staff or the council which covers the newly-amalgamated Town of Grand Falls - Windsor, for some work to be done at the golf club which services all of the residents of the Grand Falls area.

MR. BAKER: Is the golf course in Windsor or in Bishop's Falls?

MR. GRIMES: The golf course is, I guess, technically in Winsor - Buchans. It is outside of Grand Falls - Windsor on the way to Badger. And, strangely enough, it also covers the Red Indian Lake Development Association that has a project which will occur in the Millertown -Buchans area, because that office covers that area, as well.

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please!

The hon. member's time has elapsed.

MR. GRIMES: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I can give more details at a later point.

MR. CHAIRMAN: The hon. the Opposition House Leader.

MR. MATTHEWS: Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. I have just a few remarks on the Supplementary Supply debate, and specifically, since today we are seeing the presenting and tabling of information -

MR. SIMMS: He did not table it.

MR. MATTHEWS: Well, we hope he is going to. He has not finished yet, so I suppose he will speak again and hopefully, then, he will table what he has.

MR. SIMMS: What about the Minister of Forestry? I thought they wanted the bill today.

MR. MATTHEWS: The specific request to the Government House Leader was that we get a list of projects approved -

MR. SIMMS: Communities.

MR. MATTHEWS: - with location, that means communities, amount of dollars per project, and number of jobs created. Now, that was the request to the Government House Leader, so I hope that he is going to -

MR. SIMMS: He is not listening.

MR. MATTHEWS: - provide that information to us.

First of all, before I get going, I want to say to the Government House Leader and to the ministers, that they finally realize they are governing in Newfoundland and Labrador and not somewhere else in Canada or the United States. The Premier gives me a strange look, but I have a reason for saying that, because we all know that he spends a fair bit of time in Upper Canada. But we are dealing with Newfoundland and Labrador and it is going to be important for any government, regardless of political stripe, to provide for short-term work in this Province. The Government, for the first two-and-a-half years, denied that you would even consider that. You have to do both when you are governing Newfoundland and Labrador. You have to look at the long-term objectives, Mr. Chairman, to prepare for the long-term and try to get long-term work, long-term industry in the Province. But, as well, there has always been a need in this Province, and I suggest there always will be a need, to provide for short-term employment, and that is because of the nature of our Province. And the Premier alluded to it yesterday, when he talked about the size of our Province and how sparsely we are spread, and the geography and the coastline. We all want the services and we all want the jobs, so it is very important that whichever party governs this Province realizes that. And, finally, this Government realized that there was need to provide funds for short-term employment, which I am very pleased with.

Now, having said that, the reason why I made the request to the Government House Leader for the list of approvals, the location, the amount, and the jobs created, was that we are receiving considerable feedback from around the Province that there are some significant problems with the mechanics of the program, that people were called to go to work and told, `You will be starting work on Monday' - now, this is not an isolated case, there are many, many people - `You are supposed to come to work on Monday.' I know cases where they were called last Wednesday, and then, Monday, were called back and told, `I'm sorry, we don't have a job for you, now.'

MR. TOBIN: The minister should be listening to this.

MR. MATTHEWS: Yes, the Minister of Social Services should be listening, because most of the feedback coming into our offices is about the community development program. People were called and told, 'Sorry, you cannot now come to work on Monday. The department has overspent. Our district office doesn't have the money it thought it had,' or `It has to send back some of its money,' that it is not there for them to spend and, consequently, they have over-employed, I guess, is a way of putting it. And, of course, the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, today, has confirmed that, that really they spent more that the $4.5 million, I guess.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. MATTHEWS: They overspent by $400,000. The minister has confirmed, really, what those people had been told, these individuals who thought they had a job, that, indeed, the department has overspent, as the President of Treasury Board says, by about $400,000. Now, that is little consolation to those people who were called last Wednesday or Thursday and told, `Come to work Monday.'

I have had a number of calls from my district which is served by the social services district office in Grand Bank, from people who thought they were going to work on Monday, and were called Monday morning and told, `You can't come to work because the department has overspent.' That is just in mine.

The Member for Fogo said he had a number of calls, the Member for St. Mary's - The Capes has probably had the most on this side, and I am sure there are members opposite who, in their own areas, have found the same thing has happened - people who thought they had a job, were called Wednesday and called again on Monday and told, `Don't come to work, boy, because the department overspent and we can't hire you.'

So, I say to the Minister of Social Services that the problems we are experiencing is with the Community Development programme, for the most part.

Now, I want to say to the Minister of Municipal and Provincial Affairs that he has tabled a list here, today, dealing with recreation capital grants, I guess, you would call it, from his department - Labrador-oriented. But they are very heavily slanted towards the Member for Eagle River's district. Now, you can get up and try to justify that any way you want. I am not suggesting for a moment that the money is not needed in Eagle River. I am not suggesting that at all, because I am sure it is, or I would hope that the Government would not spent it if it is not needed there. But, when you look at the balance of the money spent, in Labrador where most of it has gone, to Eagle River, on the surface that does not look very fair. So, we have that concern about the programme, as well, not only with Municipal and Provincial Affairs, but with the other departments administering the employment programs that were announced by the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations a week or two ago. We have those concerns because feedback is coming to us on that.

So, these are the questions we want answered. And we are dealing with Supplementary Supply. We realize Government is anxious to have the bill passed to have supplementary supply granted, but I want to go on record here as saying that until we get the list -

AN HON. MEMBER: Broken down.

MR. MATTHEWS: - broken down, with location, amount, number of jobs, then we are not going to deal with this piece of legislation, we are not doing it. I hope the Government House Leader realizes -

MR. SIMMS: And the Premier.

MR. MATTHEWS: - and the Premier; of course, the Premier was asked in Question Period, today, and I know ministers are attempting to give some answers.

MR. SIMMS: They are still playing games.

MR. MATTHEWS: I saw the Minister of Forestry and Agriculture rise in his place, I guess, he is going to give, hopefully, some answers, and table projects that have been approved by his department.

I want to go on record, Mr. Chairman, as saying there is no way we are going to allow this bill to pass through this House until we get the information we have requested. Because we want to see where the taxpayers' money is being spent. We think that is only being responsible, particularly when we have calls coming to our offices complaining, I say to the Premier, from people who were called last Wednesday and Thursday and told to come to work on Monday and then called back and told, `I am sorry, you can't come to work because the department overspent.' We don't think that is good enough, and until we get the answers to those problems and those questions, we are not going to have the granting of supplementary supply.

MR. CHAIRMAN: The hon. the President of Treasury Board.

MR. BAKER: Just one minute. I would like to point out to members opposite that, in one of these departments, Environment and Lands, there is a real problem in terms of being able to pay development associations money before the Supplementary Supply Bill is approved. I explained that to members opposite, and they are going to have to answer to the associations for those amounts of money that cannot now be sent to them, if they fail to approve supplementary supply today.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. BAKER: I was getting to that.

The only thing we can lay on the table today is a list of the projects that have been approved, and so on, and we are in the process of doing that. The only ones available from the Department of Municipal and Provincial Affairs, at this point in time, you have; the Labrador ones were done very quickly because of the season, and that is the only thing that has been done so far. You have that. You will have all for Forestry and all for Environment and Lands in a few moments, if you will be patient. There is a problem with the Social Services -

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. BAKER: Well, are you going to listen or not? I just want to explain to you that on the forms that the minister has, there is a $400,000 overrun, which means that some of these have to be removed. So, in actual fact, that is not the list of the projects. I believe some of them have to be removed, that is my understanding - a $400,000 over expenditure there.

So, if we were to give this out - now, we can let hon. members have a look at it, I suppose - if we were to make this public, and then things were removed, this would cause problems. As soon as we know what has to be removed, we will table the full and complete list from every single community. So, there is a problem with the social services ones, a $400,000 over-expenditure.

MR. TOBIN: (Inaudible).

MR. BAKER: That was explained. A half-million of the original $5 million was put into some forestry projects that were ready to go immediately. So there was only $4.5 million extra, ultimately, put in the Department of Social Services in the Community Development Program, and an extra $500,000 in the Forestry programme. So, $4.5 million extra is available in the Community Development programme, but there is an over-expenditure.

MR. TOBIN: (Inaudible).

MR. BAKER: No, not really. There was $5 million approved. We took $500,000 out, and, in the process, afterwards there happened to be an over-expenditure, or a planned expenditure in social services that was $400,000 over the $4.5 million. The sequence was wrong, that is all.

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please!

The hon. the Leader of the Opposition.

MR. SIMMS: Mr. Chairman, time is drawing nigh, and we made an agreement to see the Lieutenant-Governor at 4:30 p.m., but I do want to make this point.

The Government House Leader cannot come into the House, and all of a sudden, issue little threats. I mean, he called us today -

MR. MATTHEWS: This morning.

MR. SIMMS: - this morning. He called the Opposition House Leader this morning and said, all of a sudden, `We need the money for the Environment and Lands projects.' Now, `this morning'- it is not like he called us several days ago and we have been hanging this up, or anything like that. He called this morning, and we - we, being the caucus - collectively, said: `Fine.' We have no problem agreeing with that request. We have no problem at all being co-operative, as long as they are co-operative with us.

So, we made a simple request. Following up on questions we asked a couple of days ago for the same information, we asked if he would provide us with a list of projects approved, the numbers of jobs, the amount of money, etc., from each of the departments involved in that special $14 million project that was announced by the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. SIMMS: Well, I say to the minister, we are not going to give the Government - they had all day. What we have been seeing is ministers getting up and playing little games, like the Member for Exploits, who got up and made this little speech about, `Oh, I wonder where St. Anthony is. Is that in a Liberal district,' and all that foolishness and silliness. He wasted ten minutes when he got up.

We have asked for the information to be provided to us in list. It has not been done, and the promise we made to the Government House Leader is that if he provided those lists to us, we would have no problem agreeing to letting supplementary supply go. Up until now, we have not seen what we have asked for, and unless we do, and the Opposition House Leader has made it very clear, we will be debating it again next week.

MR. CHAIRMAN: The hon. the Minister of Forestry and Agriculture.

MR. FLIGHT: Mr. Chairman, as according to the wishes of the Hon. House Leader, I have no problem in listing, or tabling, for that matter, the projects that were approved, in most cases, projects on the ground, and people working. However, I do have some difficulty, Mr. Chairman, in tabling this list right now. The reason is this, that the bulk of the projects are, indeed, on the ground and I have no problem tabling them, but we still have projects to commit to individual development associations, and they may not be committed. I have a list here. I didn't know that we were being asked, today, to table this list, and this afternoon I

AN HON. MEMBER: We asked on Monday.

MR. FLIGHT: Well, you may have asked on Monday, Mr. Chairman, but as I said, I arranged for my department to send me a list of the projects that are approved and pending approval. The great bulk of Forestry's is approved. The jobs have been ongoing for two weeks, and I will table those. My problem is, included in the list of the projects that are ongoing is a list of contracts under negotiations that may or may not be provided. So I am not going to table a list -

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible) list.

MR. FLIGHT: Right here?

AN HON. MEMBER: Explain Forestry first.

MR. SIMMS: He should be explaining the one he has the most problems with.

MR. FLIGHT: Alright, Mr. Chairman. There is no problem explaining the Department of Environment and Lands list. Here it is, and I will read for the record the projects that are now under contract, that are ready to go, that, as a matter of fact, are ongoing: Lamaline Town Council, $9,000; Red Harbour Council, $24,000; Virginia River Clean-up, $16,000; Manuel River Heritage, $32,000; the Council of Steady Brook, $20,000; Victoria Town Council, $16,000; Placentia Town Council, $20,000.

Now, Mr. Chairman, I am prepared to table those seven projects, but I need time to go out and take them off the list, because there are another ten projects that we are discussing; there is one in the hon. member's District of Green Bay, but I cannot say with confidence that that particular project will, indeed, be done.

AN HON. MEMBER: What's the emergency?

MR. FLIGHT: Well, I just listed $200,000 worth, basically, of work, and there is only $500,000 in the whole programme.

AN HON. MEMBER: You don't have to table it, it is written in the record.

MR. FLIGHT: I have read it into in the record.

So, Mr. Chairman, if the hon. members are interested in having the Forestry projects read into the record - The Lourdes Development Association, $50,000; Codroy Development Association, $80,000; Bonavista South Development Association, $50,000; Random North Development Association, $50,000; Southern Shore Development, $30,000; Upper Trinity Regional Development Association, $15,000.

I might point out, Mr. Chairman, that a lot of those development associations, although reference to the development association would indicate, in a certain given district, a lot of those development associations cut across provincial district lines and they administer projects and hire from the immediate area; so, although the indication might be, at first glance, that that development association is - for instance, as my hon. friend from Grand Falls knows, the Exploit Valley Development Association provides projects and their mandate is to hire from pretty well the whole central region. So, Exploits Valley Development Association, $99,000; Benton Local Service District, $60,000; Baie Verte Development Association, $100,000; that, I might point out, was indicated long before the results of the bi-election. Bay d'Espoir, $170,000; Bay St. George, (inaudible); White Bay North Straits Association, $90,000; Exploits Valley Development Association, $120,000; Eastern Pond, wherever that is, $70,000; McKenzies Brook, $60,000; Halls Bay South, $60,000.

Mr. Chairman, I might point out, too, that in this list that my officials have just provided me, there are brackets with `c',`c', `c' on some of these. By the time I get back to my office, they may be under consideration - `c' means `cancelled', for one thing. I don't know, and I won't know until I get back to my office.

But, Mr. Chairman, we have committed $1.8 million out of a potential $2 million allocation, and, of that, $1,024,000 is out under contract. There is, roughly, another $652,000 being negotiated. Mr. Chairman, I don't know what other information the hon. members want.

MR. CHAIRMAN: The hon. the Member for Burin - Placentia West.

MR. TOBIN: Mr. Chairman, I would like to make a few brief comments about what is taking place here, today.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

AN HON. MEMBER: Rise the Committee.

On motion, that the Committee rise, report progress and ask leave to sit again, Mr. Speaker returned to the Chair.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. Member for Trinity - Bay de Verde.

MR. A. SNOW: Mr. Speaker, the Committee of the Whole on Supply have considered the matters to them referred, have directed me to report progress and ask leave to sit again.

On motion, report received and adopted, Committee ordered to sit again, presently by leave.

MR. SPEAKER: Admit His Honour, the Lieutenant-Governor.

May it please Your Honour, the General Assembly of the Province has, at its present session, passed certain bills, to which, in the name and on behalf of the General Assembly, I respectfully request Your Honour's assent.

A bill, "An Act Respecting The Office Of The Auditor General And The Auditing Of The Public Accounts Of The Province." (Bill No. 1).

A bill, "An Act To Ratify, Confirm And Adopt An Agreement Between The Government Of Canada And the Government Of The Province Respecting Reciprocal Taxation Of These Governments And Their Agencies." (Bill No. 8).

A bill, "An Act To Amend The Hearing Aid Dealers Act." (Bill No. 10).

A bill, "An Act To Amend The Optometry Act, 1981." (Bill No. 9).

HIS HONOUR, THE LIEUTENANT-GOVERNOR: In Her Majesty's Name, I assent to these bills.

Mr. Speaker and Members of the Honourable House of Assembly:

I want to take this opportunity to thank the members of this hon. House, you, Mr. Speaker, and the Table officers, for the many courtesies that have been extended to me, as the Queen's representative during the past five years. I am about to depart from office and I know that the same courtesies will be extended to my distinguished successor.

This, of course, is the only institution that represents all of the people of Newfoundland and Labrador and, as such, it is the most important institution in our Province. I wish you well in your important deliberations during these difficult times, in the development of our Province and in the evolution of our national Constitution.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

The hon. the Government House Leader.

MR. BAKER: Motion 2, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Leader of the Opposition.

MR. SIMMS: Mr. Speaker, this is Thursday. There is a motion before the House, already, to adjourn, I believe, is there not, at 4:30 p.m.?


MR. SPEAKER: It has been moved and seconded that this House do now adjourn.

All those in favour of the motion, please say 'aye'. Those against the motion, 'nay'. I declare the motion defeated.

The hon. the Government House Leader.

MR. BAKER: Motion 2, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: Motion 2.

MR. SIMMS: On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. There is a motion before the House that the House adjourn automatically. You just take the vote in the House. If the motion is defeated, you come back tonight. That is all, come back tonight.

Not only that, while I am on my feet, I will tell His Honour that the Government House Leader - the mace is not even there.

MR. SPEAKER: I am sorry. We will start again.

MR. SIMMS: We will start again, yes.

Mr. Speaker, I want to inform the House, as well, that it was our understanding we had an agreement with the Government House Leader and the agreement between the Government House Leader and the Opposition House Leader was that at four-thirty we would forego the Late Show, have His Honour in and the House would adjourn following that procedure. Now, that was the arrangement, that was the agreement, that was the word of the Government House Leader with the Opposition House Leader. Now, either it was or it was not.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Government House Leader.

MR. BAKER: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

I know that the Opposition Leader is used to fulfilling the other role, but I would like to remind him, he is in a new role now, and maybe that is part of the problem here.

First of all, Mr. Speaker, we have a number of conversations and a number of arrangements like this and obviously, His Honour, this being the end of His Honour's term, was invited to come and give Royal Assent to bills that were ready for Royal Assent, and this was done. There was an agreement, because of this, to forego the Late Show and have His Honour in here to do the appropriate things. At the same time, I indicated to the Opposition House Leader that, in terms of the amount of money allocated for Environment and Lands in this particular bill, there was an emergency situation, and I explained that in the House today, the fact that with other Government departments we could get these projects started by shifting money, and properly, accordingly to the Financial Administration Act, and when the supplementary supply was available then, of course, the money could be replenished. But with Environment and Lands there is a special problem, there is no money there and, therefore, there is nothing to move around and these programs cannot now begin until the Supplementary Supply Bill is through, and we wanted these programs to begin very quickly, because the development associations concerned are expecting that the money is available. There is a problem with that one allocation. So I would like to have the Supplementary Supply Bill today.

Then there was a great deal of talking back and forth about information. So, I said to the Opposition House Leader -

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

Just for the sake of clarity and everything else, I just want to make sure we are now going by leave of the House. We did have some confusion with the mace not being on the Table. So do we just understand that we are going now by agreement of the House to whatever point the Government House Leader wants to make, and we allow the appropriate response and then do whatever we are supposed to do.

AN HON. MEMBER: He is responding to a point of order, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: Oh, he is responding to a point of order, all right. Fine! I was not aware of that.

MR. BAKER: Where was I? Oh, yes, the necessity of getting the Supplementary Supply Bill through. I indicated to him that we needed this. So there was conversation back and forth about the information, and I said, `Look, we have absolutely no problem tabling information on things that are underway and so on and we have no problem in being open and giving the information that is available at the present time.' So we came to the first lot of information. All this was done very quickly, at the last minute, and Members opposite know the problems with retrieval of large amounts of information, so it was done very quickly. It was done after Cabinet this morning because Ministers were tied up in Cabinet, and so it was very quickly done. So we had the first lot tabled from the Minister of Municipal Affairs. These are the projects that have been approved and they are all in Labrador because we all wanted to get an early start there. So that is one of the programs.

The programs in Forestry and Agriculture and in Environment and Lands - at the time I did not realize there was a problem with any on the list. The Minister, in his explanation, says some of them are still under negotiation and may or may not be completed. It is a complete list.

AN HON. MEMBER: Didn't you realize that?

MR. BAKER: I did not realize that, no.

AN HON. MEMBER: I thought it was an emergency.

MR. BAKER: Well the emergency is with only one lot, not with them all. You have to understand that. The emergency was that we cannot now provide the money to the development associations out there who maybe even have gotten permission to go ahead, and they maybe even have started spending money. Yet we cannot pay them the money in that first week until the Supplementary Supply Bill is through.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. BAKER: We cannot use special warrants simply because the House is in session, so we are in a bit of a bind.

Anyway, the lists are available there. The Minister read them out, so they are on the record, and I am sure that you could have a look at the list. He did not want to table them because some of them, he noticed, are under negotiation right now and may or may not go ahead.

Then we get to Social Services which originally had an allocation of $5 million and $500,000 was, by agreement, put into Forestry and Agriculture because there are a lot of forestry projects ready to go. So $4.5 million ended up there. There is a list of projects there totalling $4.9 million and that has to be reduced by $400,000. So again, some of these projects on that Minister's list will not go ahead, obviously, for whatever reason.

So the list is more than complete, is my point. There is too much on the list. So we have the information here. Now, that is the situation. That is as much of the information as I could get. So the agreement then was to forego the Late Show and His Honour would come in, but there was never any commitment that if - Now the Member opposite said, 'if we do not get the information then we are not going to pass the Supplementary Supply Bill.' He said that, and I understand that. I said to him, 'Well, there is information I am going to have to give him and there are things that I can do.' Okay? Now, it is left at that.

One of the things, I suppose, that we could do is to continue the debate for another while, defeat the motion to adjourn, which is proper - the Member is right, there is a motion to adjourn on the floor - and we can go until five o'clock, I assume, because five o'clock is the limit of time in the afternoon.

AN HON. MEMBER: That is right.

MR. BAKER: We had twenty-five minutes left where we could have gone through it, because we had not yet deal with the Social Services situation. We could have gone through the Social Services list. The Minister could have gone through that and given additional information. So it was quite straightforward, I just thought there was extra time and we could use it.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Opposition House Leader.

MR. MATTHEWS: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker.

Part of what the Government House Leader says is correct. He contacted me this morning, for the clarification of Members, to advise me of the problem that he had, particularly with the Environment and Lands $500,000 Supplementary Supply request. Of course, I could not make a decision at that time to tell him we would pass this bill. I had to take it, quite naturally, to the Caucus, which I did. I informed him that if he could provide me in the House with the list of projects approved by each department, the location, the amount of money spent, and the number of jobs, then, yes, we would seriously consider letting the Supplementary Supply Bill pass. Now, that is what happened.

The Minister informed me that he did not know if he could get that information. He said, 'you know what happens when you request stuff, sometimes there is difficulty in getting it.' I said, 'well, you understand where I am coming from and our position on it.' So, consequently, we agreed, as well, that we would debate the Supplementary Supply Bill until four thirty, and we would then have the Lieutenant Governor in and, consequently then, Mr. Speaker, we would adjourn until tomorrow, Wednesday at two of the clock in the p.m. as we say. Now, that was what we discussed because we know the Government side wanted to close for Friday because of their annual meeting. We know the request for Monday, to prepare the House for Tuesday for the swearing in of the new Lieutenant Governor. Now, that was the understanding and the agreement. Subsequently, we do not feel satisfied with the information that has been provided on the employment programs and, as I said, when I spoke earlier this afternoon, the major problem with the employment programs stems from the community development social services component.

I want to say to the Government House Leader, you are saying you are overspent by $400,000, but I cannot understand it because -

AN HON. MEMBER: It is unbelievable (inaudible).

MR. MATTHEWS: Precisely! I was going to ask the question, why would people have been called and told, do not to come to work Monday because we are overspent. That is the word that is out and about the Province, that the Department overspent. They have not overspent, they have over-approved projects by $400,000 and now they have to go back through the list and decide which ones they are going to cancel.

MR. BAKER: No, no.

MR. MATTHEWS: No, what? What are you going to do then? I mean, is that what I heard the Government -

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. MATTHEWS: I am sure he can. I am just telling you what I understood from the Government House Leader, that the problem was that there had to be an adjustment in the social services list, and I am trying to understand why that had to happen. My point is you are not overspent as you are telling your district offices, you are not overspent at all because the money has not been spent. How can you spend money you do not have? That is the problem, and that is why we are not satisfied, as I said, to let this thing go.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. minister aside, I want to get straight what we are now doing. We are on a point of order. Is the minister addressing a point of order?

AN HON. MEMBER: Yes, he is.

MR. SPEAKER: Okay. The hon. the Minister of Social Services.

MR. HOGAN: Thank you.

Mr. Speaker, just as a point of explanation, it is not overspent, it is overcommitted. The system of recovery - and my friend from Treasury Board is not fully aware of this, but -

[Technical malfunction]

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. HOGAN: Mr. Speaker, what happened in this particular instance was that there was a regular Community Development programme approved in the Budget this year, and after that money was spent for the year, there were a number of projects that were yet to be approved, left over from the original programme.

As the hon. member from Marystown is probably aware, in those programmes there is such a thing as block funding, where there is a blanket amount awarded to each region and, subsequently, to individual district offices. Amongst the first group of approvals, which were basically approved en masse, there was a great bulk of block funding totalling, I am going by memory, approximately $1.3 million.

Now, by tradition, and as the member can confirm over there, normally, there is a 10 per cent to 15 per cent return on these projects because of no-shows, the jobs not being done, and so on. When we realized that there were so many projects approved, we froze the approval process in the department and, when the smoke settled, as the fellow says, we went out to the district offices and the regional offices and advised them not to spend their block funding money.

MR. TOBIN: (Inaudible) block funding.


They were told to freeze their block funding money and advise headquarters of the amounts in each case. In any projects where there were no-shows, for example, if a project were approved and there were fifteen people to work on it, and they had hired thirteen and two did not show, do not hire the extra two, send the money back for those two, and so on back across the Province. Normally, as hon. members are aware, that has a return factor of 10 per cent to 15 per cent. We were hoping to recover the 10 per cent in that fashion and we will be more knowledgeable on it next week when we have a settled amount.

MR. TOBIN: (Inaudible).

MR. HOGAN: The block funding has been identified and issued to district offices but it is not spent, and no people gone to work on the block funding - I shouldn't say no people gone to work on the block funding, but the normal practice is, that is the last money to be spent. We will recall the block funding to bring down the total, or reissue to specific projects that are not yet approved.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Leader of the Opposition.

MR. SIMMS: Where is the list? We still have not seen the list. We have been arguing about this now for half-an-hour. We still have not seen the list. I want to make sure we understand what we are talking about. We know there is a problem with the Social Services one and we want answers to it. We are not prepared to let the Social Services one go until we get the answers. The point here, I understand, that the Government House Leader is trying to make is that the $500,000 under the Environment and Lands grouping, that clause, is the money that you need approved because development associations are sponsoring the projects under Environment and Lands. The departments are sponsoring them in the other departments. Is that correct?

MR. BAKER: That is right.

AN HON. MEMBER: That is wrong.

MR. SIMMS: The Government House Leader says yes, the minister says no.

AN HON. MEMBER: What did he say?

MR. SIMMS: He is saying no. The $500,000 in Bill 44, whatever clause it is, under Environment and Lands, is the problem. The money under Environment and Lands, under that clause, is money that you are going to allocate to development associations and the like which are sponsoring the projects.

AN HON. MEMBER: For cleanup.

MR. SIMMS: That's what I said.

MR. FLIGHT: (Inaudible), as well.

MR. SIMMS: But, the thing is, we were not told anything about emergency or urgency in Forestry.

AN HON. MEMBER: No, environment and Lands.

MR. SIMMS: Environment and Lands. Now, where is the list of projects for Environment and Lands?

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. SIMMS: Well, what is it doing there? Why didn't he table it an hour ago?

AN HON. MEMBER: Because he explained.

MR. SIMMS: No, Mr. Speaker, what he did was he got up and played games, he started reading them off and all that nonsense. He should have tabled it an hour ago.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Forestry and Agriculture.

MR. FLIGHT: Mr. Speaker, I can be very specific, whether I will satisfy the hon. the Leader of the Opposition or not. I can only stand here with certainty this afternoon and tell the hon. House that seven projects under Environment and Lands have, indeed, been funded and signed. I have it on this list, for a total of about $150,000.

MR. SIMMS: So you don't need that half-million!

MR. FLIGHT: However, Mr. Speaker, I have also on this list, work that is worth $1.5 million, but I can't tell this House with certainty that all of these projects will, indeed, be funded, because we are negotiating with the town councils or with the development associations.

AN HON. MEMBER: Emergency (inaudible).

MR. FLIGHT: There is an emergency.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

The hon. the Opposition House Leader.

MR. MATTHEWS: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Speaker, I really wish this had not happened here today. It is too bad that there are not more people here today who could witness this because, if you remember what I said here earlier this afternoon, that we wanted to know where the request for additional monies, taxpayers' money, was going to be spent. Seriously, in the last fifteen minutes here it has been really justified to me, solely, that the concerns we raised earlier were very, very legitimate because the Government are so ill-prepared -

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. MATTHEWS: - they are so ill-prepared, they do not know what want the money for, they do not know where they are going to spend it, they have overcommitted and they cannot give us answer here this afternoon as to what they want the Supplementary Supply for. Now, that is the problem.

When the Government House Leader called me this morning and told me that he needed $500,000 for Environment and Lands for cleanup because there were development associations involved, I took it very, very seriously, Mr. Speaker, because I knew that he probably was in a bind. But when I come in here now and find out that the minister says there are seven projects of about one hundred-and-something thousand dollars - he is really not sure - then our concerns are legitimate on behalf of the taxpayers of this Province, and to do anything else, Mr. Speaker, other than what we have done here this afternoon would be totally irresponsible. I, as House Leader on this side, am not prepared to pass Supplementary Supply, it is as simple as that.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Government House Leader.

MR. BAKER: Mr. Speaker, very slowly again, and I hope the hon. mMember listens and I hope he understands this time, in the Supplementary Supply Bill there is a $500,000 allocation for Environment and Lands. We cannot approve $100 of that and leave the rest.

AN HON. MEMBER: Couldn't we do that?

MR. BAKER: No. The heading is the $500,000. Projects have been committed under that allotment and people out there now, development associations out there now, want their money. Now, that would not ordinarily pose a problem if it were one of the other Departments that would have money that could be moved temporarily and then replenished when the Supply Bill got through the House. That is the normal thing. With Environment and Lands the money is not there for even those seven projects, to transfer it,and so on. So that is what the emergency is. I do not know if I can explain it any more clearly than that. The minister read out the projects that were approved and, therefore, it is on the record.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. BAKER: Yes, he read them out. It is on the record, and the situation is exactly as I described it. That is the one heading that needs to be approved, and that is exactly what I said in the first place, and that is the situation. So I hope hon. members opposite understand that now, that there is a problem there and we cannot transfer the money in, and you understand all that. There is a problem with that heading. I just wanted to make sure that hon. members understood that problem.

AN HON. MEMBER: You want the list.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Leader of the Opposition.

MR. SIMMS: This gets crazier every moment as we go on. Mr. Speaker, earlier we were simply waiting for the list to be tabled and we still have not seen the list. Now, somebody said that the minister read it. Well, not everyone was here or listening, but the important thing is we want to see the list. I did not hear them all.

The second thing we now find out is that there are seven projects totalling $150,000. Now the question is, if we were good-natured or good-hearted enough, if we were satisfied with the seven projects that he is talking about, if we wanted to approve those we could check with the Clerk and see if that is allowed. I asked the Clerk earlier if we could approve a clause, and the Clerk's advice was, presumably, we can do whatever we wish. As the House we are masters of our own rules, presumably. Sometimes I wonder. So if we could approve one clause, then maybe we could approve $150,000 out of Environment and Lands, if we could see the seven projects and if we knew what they were and where they were for and everything else. That is all we are asking, and if the money is really needed.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Development.

MR. FUREY: Mr. Speaker, this has got to be a first. I mean, it is the first time that I have ever seen an Opposition, publicly in the media and elsewhere, demand that the Government spend money creating jobs. They have been in the media demanding that we spend money to create jobs. Now they come to the legislature, we look for the appropriation and they will not give it to us. They will not give it to us.

Now, the hon. the Minister of Environment and Lands laid out his whole list of approvals today; the Minister of Municipal Affairs explained where he would be spending his money; the Minister of Social Services explained where he would be spending his money; and the Minister of Environment and Lands said to you, `We have seven projects negotiated and there are some more outstanding that are currently being negotiated.' And he will probably tell you what they are if you want to take the consequences of them falling apart.

MR. SIMMS: Oh, there you go!

MR. FUREY: If you want to take the consequences of them possibly falling apart.

AN HON. MEMBER: Stop worrying and get on with things.

MR. FUREY: So, Mr. Speaker, you cannot talk through both sides of your mouth.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

I ask the hon. member to take his place.

It being 5:00 p.m., adjournment is before the House.

It is moved and seconded that this House do now adjourn.

All those in favour of the motion, please say, `aye'. Those against the motion, please say, `nay'.

I declare the motion defeated and ask hon. Members to join me at 7:00 p.m.



The House resumed at 7:00 p.m.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

The hon. the Government House Leader.

MR. BAKER: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Some things have happened in the last couple of hours and I would now like to move that the House at its rising do adjourn until 2:00 p.m., Wednesday, and that the House do now adjourn.

On motion, the House at its rising adjourned until tomorrow, Wednesday, at 2:00 p.m.