November 8, 1991              HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY PROCEEDINGS          Vol. XLI  No. 67

The House met at 9:00 a.m.

MR. SPEAKER (Lush): Order, please!

Before calling routine business, on behalf of hon. Members, I would like to extend a warm welcome to the House of Assembly today to fourteen Girl Guides, accompanied by their leaders Michelle Ansara and Denise Michelin; also twenty-four people from the Bridges Program, the YMCA and YWCA, St. John's.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

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

MR. GULLAGE: Mr. Speaker, I would just like to take a moment to commend an individual. Last evening I attended a ceremony on Signal Hill at Cabot Tower, a ceremony which saw the unveiling of the sites surrounding Cabot Tower, Signal Hill. The restoration of course has been going on for some time now of the entire surrounding area and indeed the hill itself, because it is of course, historic in every respect.

Paul Johnson, through the Johnson Family Foundation has been spending now considerable - million of dollars really, in restoring a lot of our heritage and a lot of our history, particularly on Signal Hill. I want to take a moment now to commend him for his work; he spent upwards of a million dollars on restoring this latest phase of Signal Hill and the restoration surrounding the Tower and last evening he was commended for his work by Environment Canada, and presented with a placque honouring his contribution at this particular time. I want to add to the Federal Government's comments and to their recognition of Paul Johnson in particular and the Johnson Family Foundation for the fine work that they have done in helping us restore our valuable heritage and in particular Signal Hill.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

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

MR. SIMMS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I just briefly want to be associated with the Minister's comments. The Johnson Family Foundation is noted for several involvements over the years and not just this particular project on Signal Hill; but the Signal Hill one is a tremendous example I guess, of what can be done with some outside financial help like that provided by Paul Johnson and his family, so we would like to be associated with those remarks.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for St. John's East Extern.

MR. HARRIS: St. John's East, Mr. Speaker?

MR. SPEAKER: East, sorry.

MR. HARRIS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I would like to express my appreciation as Member for St. John's East, to Paul Johnson and to the Johnson Family Foundation. The exhibit called The Lookout Project on Signal Hill is a remarkable achievement. It is a very significant contribution by Paul Johnson and his family's foundation, and it is one of these rare acts in our Province, Mr. Speaker, unfortunately too rare, of public philanthropy. As a personal contribution Mr. Johnson spent three years and considerable sums of money undertaking this remarkable project, and I commend it to all Members to go and have a look. It is an outdoor exhibit which brings to life the history and geography of the Province. It makes a visit to Signal Hill a much more enjoyable experience. It is a great contribution which will last for many years.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: Mr. Speaker, I want to advise the House that the present Minister of Justice and Member for Humber West will also be resigning his position as Chairman and Member on the Constitutional Committee. In the interim, I have asked the Member for Bonavista South to replace the Member for Humber West on the Committee, and of course the Vice-Chairman, who is Mr. Roberts, will continue now as Chairman. How we will structure it beyond that we will decide later, once some other decisions are made, and a further announcement will be made at that time. We will be asking Mr. Gover, other than the direct duties of Chairman, to take on all the other duties which the Member for Humber West would have otherwise performed in respect to the matter.

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

MR. SIMMS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

I appreciate the Premier mentioning this to me before the House opened, and I am pleased to see Mr. Gover being appointed to the Committee. I do not know if it is a sign of bigger things to come; who knows? We will have to wait and see.

Secondly, we have no difficulty with the Vice-Chairman carrying on in an interim capacity at least. He knows my views on it. I think the Chair should be occupied by an elected Member of the Legislature, so hopefully that is what will come out of it in due course, but that is his decision.

Finally, while I am on my feet, if I could, I think I should make the observation that we, on this side of the House, have some concerns about the Committee's plans, the immediate plans, because the Committee has decided to hold hearings beginning next Tuesday.

MS. VERGE: The Committee did not decide it (Inaudible).

MR. SIMMS: Well, the Committee did not decide it. Apparently the staff must have decided under the direction of somebody. Nevertheless, the Committee is beginning its hearings next Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, I think. I have a concern that there may be not quite enough notice for people in those areas, and perhaps there might be some reconsideration of that particular matter. Because we would not want to see occurring in this Province with our Committee what is happening with the Federally appointed Committee. So I just bring that to the Premier's attention. He might want to respond to it now.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: Yes, Mr. Speaker, I do want to respond to it now. To the best of my knowledge the Leader of the Opposition is not correctly informed. As far as I understand it the Committee decided when the hearings would take place and where. Now the Member for Humber East shakes her head but I am satisfied that the present Chairman of the Committee knows what went on in the Committee, and I have no hesitancy accepting his advice that the Committee decided.

Now all Members of the House know my own personal view that this is not the right way to go constitutionally. We have established this Committee solely because the Federal Government insisted on the process it has in place. I have expressed my opinion time and time again that it is not the right process, that it will not work, and I think I have been borne out when you see what has happened. My opinion of it has been clearly borne out and shown to, in the end, have been correct. Now I would not be at all surprised to see a similar thing happen to our Committee. Not because of organization or anything such as that, but because this is not the right process to deal with this situation at this time. So I do not want anybody to believe that because you do not take months in advance to line up and orchestrate people to come and appear and give (Inaudible), that it is going to be a sign of failure.

So with respect to the concern raised by the Leader of the Opposition, I understand his concern. I would not be a bit surprised to see that it is not heavily attended, it does not get a great deal of attention in the communities to which it will go. I was not convinced that such travelling around the Province was necessary or beneficial in the first instance. We put the Committee in place because the Federal Government insisted on having this process and we - if they insisted on meeting with local Provincial committees - have to have one.

So, Mr. Speaker, we will try it and see what happens, and deal with the problem if, as and when any arise.

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

MR. SIMMS: I realize this is not Question Period but since we are on the topic, perhaps by agreement, I would like to say to the Premier: my understanding is that the committee decided the locations and so on but not when the meetings would occur. Again, my concern is that the meetings begin next Tuesday. The advertising for those meetings has only just begun today, say, for example, Thursday, as I understand it in Central Newfoundland. There might be some advertising for a committee meeting on Tuesday, so I am not surprised that the Premier might have the view that these meetings might not work and people might not come out. Why would they? They do not have time to prepare. That is the only point we are trying to make. It is a reasonable request to ask that maybe the meeting scheduled for next week could be deferred for a week, or something, and give the people at least a week or ten days worth of notice so that they could properly prepare, because while you might think it might not work it is certainly our desire to see that they will work.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: Mr. Speaker, I will today raise with the Vice-Chairman, now acting Chairman of the committee, the concerns that have been expressed and let the committee make its own decision on the matter. They may decide to defer or they may decide to proceed as planned. We will let them decide.

Oral Questions

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

MR. SIMMS: Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the Premier. The Minister of Finance announced in his Budget on March 7 that Government was going to eliminated 2500 jobs, made up of 1300 permanent, 350 part-time, 350 seasonal, and 500 vacant positions that were going to be eliminated. Subsequent to that beginning last March, and right up until the House closed at the end of May, in this House and by questions on the Order Paper, we as an Opposition have been asking for the number of positions, the number of jobs, and the job descriptions of all those people laid off, the positions declared redundant, or vacant positions eliminated. Several Ministers, including the Minister of Finance and the President of Treasury Board assured us they would get that information. That was eight months ago, Mr. Speaker. Now I want to ask the Premier, since eight months have passed - and surely he knows the answer - can he tell us how many positions were actually eliminated.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: Mr. Speaker, let me set the record straight. The Government did not announce that it was going to eliminate 2,500 jobs or any such thing. What the Government said was, the Budget is going to be set at this amount. We have talked to the people who run the various departments, who run the various hospitals, and, in their estimation, it could possibly result in a certain reduction. Now, that is exactly what we decided, not to eliminate jobs. Mr. Speaker, we did not want to eliminate a single job, but the realism is that if you cut the budgetary expenditures there is a real prospect that it might eliminate a number of jobs. But the managers of the different governmental departments and agencies of Government had to decide how to spend the money, and we frankly admitted that it could conceivably result in a total loss of positions totalling 2,500, so many vacant positions being eliminated and so many jobs being actually lost, permanent and temporary.

Now, Mr. Speaker, as I recall, when the questions were asked we advised the House precisely how many were lost, let's say, in the Department of Education. We had the precise numbers and they were tabled in the House. There were some other areas, like hospitals and so on, where we couldn't very easily tell what the consequences would be. Now, I do not know what has happened since the House last sat, but I will endeavour to find out exactly what the impact is, to the extent that we can say so and advise the House.

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

MR. SIMMS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. A supplementary to the Premier. Rather interesting - when I was saying in my question that the Government was eliminating an estimated 2,500 jobs, the Minister of Finance was over there nodding to me behind the Premier's back, yet the Premier gets up and starts playing with words, and says, `Oh, we did not say that.' You did say that. The Government said they were going to eliminate an estimated 2,500 jobs.

Now, Mr. Speaker, he says that departments gave the information. That is totally inaccurate. The departments did not give any information. They have not provided us with any answers - none whatsoever. The Minister of Education did not give us the final number of jobs eliminated by his department - never did.

Now, Mr. Speaker, the President of Treasury Board told me on May 10th - six months ago - and I quote, `I have documentation now put together for hon. members from all departments. We will not give the names and addresses' - because we had asked for that information, as well - `but we will give all other information. I am now putting it together for all departments. The process will soon be finished.' That was six months ago.

Will the Premier instruct the President of Treasury Board to lay that information on the Table today, immediately, if he said it was just about ready six months ago? Surely, there is something wrong.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: Mr. Speaker, the Leader of the Opposition should tell his researcher to research the whole of Hansard when he seeks to dig out these kinds of questions, and look back and see the information that was tabled by the Minister of Education, because I sat in the House when the Minister of Education stood and provided figures. So he should tell his researcher to look at the whole of Hansard to get all of the information before he prepares these kinds of questions.

Now, Mr. Speaker, I do acknowledge that we explained to the House at the time that we could not get information readily from hospitals, for example, because the hospitals were manipulating and changing their position to best suit their management, and I have no quarrel with that. There may be some jobs that were intended to be altered and may not now be altered because they make adjustments. So it would be some considerable time before we would see the full effect of it. Now, in the meantime, the House closed and nobody has raised the question in the meantime.

Now that the Leader of the Opposition has raised the question again, I will take the question under advisement and I will ask the officials of the departments concerned to prepare as much information as they can as to the numbers, where they work, the different sectors they work in, and so on, and provide the information to the House, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SIMMS: A supplementary, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Leader of the Opposition, on a supplementary.

MR. SIMMS: Mr. Speaker, the Premier can try to wiggle around this all he wishes, the fact of the matter is, he went back on his word, and his Government went back on it's word. They committed to this House back in May to provide the information for all departments. He keeps turning around and pointing at the Minister of Education, who, by the way, only supplied a partial list. The Minister of Education did not give us the number of student assistants. As a matter of fact, he said he could not tell us about the colleges `because that would not be finalized until September' - that is what the minister said - `and we will provide that information to the House.'

Anyway, Mr. Speaker, I want to ask the Premier one final time, can he get the information, at least from the departments, in the next day or so? Because presumably it is all ready. He is trying to lead us to believe that it has all been done, all the information has been provided. Check Hansard. Can he get the information from the departments immediately, and try to get the other ministers responsible for universities, for the colleges, for the hospitals, to get that information for us, as well, so that we, as an Opposition, can do our job on behalf of the taxpayers of the Province?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: Mr. Speaker, we have now seen the wiggling, and it is an interesting wiggle that the hon. member does. It is a very interesting wiggle, indeed.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

PREMIER WELLS: Let me restate, Mr. Speaker, the answer I just gave, because obviously the Leader of the Opposition, in asking his question, either didn't listen to it or didn't want to hear what was in it. I acknowledged the questions asked, we provided the information available to us at the time, before the House closed.

AN HON. MEMBER: No, you did not.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

PREMIER WELLS: Mr. Speaker, we have no hesitation. Now, that the question has been raised again, for the very first time, I undertake to get the information at the earliest possible opportunity. I go further, Mr. Speaker, and I undertake, on behalf of the President of Treasury Board, that we will provide, before this House adjourns this morning, whatever information is readily available. It will be for different departments, whatever is available. I cannot say to the Leader of the Opposition that it will be absolutely perfectly detailed information this morning, but I will undertake that the President of Treasury Board will cause to be tabled, before the House adjourns today, whatever information is available, and to the extent that other information that can be obtained in the next few days and is not now available, will be obtained in the next few days. There is no problem with this, Mr. Speaker, none at all.

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

MR. WOODFORD: Mr. Speaker, my question is to the minister responsible for Forestry and Agriculture. It is no secret, Mr. Speaker, especially over the last twelve to eighteen months, that the pulp and paper industry in Newfoundland, in Canada, and in North America, as a whole, is having some very serious problems. There have been layoffs at the Abitibi-Price mill in Grand Falls, thirty-nine people laid off at Corner Brook pulp and paper last summer, and a two-week shutdown, and layoffs in the woods industry. Could the minister tell the House when he last had discussions with Abitibi-Price or Corner Brook pulp and paper concerning these very serious problems?

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

MR. FLIGHT: Mr. Speaker, about the middle of last week.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Humber Valley, on a supplementary.

MR. WOODFORD: Mr. Speaker, could the minister inform the House if, in his meetings with those people last week, they had requested any help, or if they had informed the minister of any more layoffs or downtime, especially pertaining to the Kruger operation in Corner Brook?

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

MR. FLIGHT: Mr. Speaker, as it specifically applies to Corner Brook pulp and paper, or as he refers to it, Kruger of Corner Brook, we have recently been informed by the management, of the severe difficulties being experienced world-wide - certainly, Canada-wide, not only in Newfoundland - pointing out the kinds of problems that exist and the great difficulty they have in maintaining their position in the marketplace and speculating, possibly, on various things the Province might be prepared to look at with them to help them over this very severe slump in the pulp and paper industry. There has been no specific request, as such, just a desire to inform us as to where they are and what their problems are, making sure we are aware, and wondering whether or not we may meet, and discuss, by way of mutual interest, what may be done for the pulp and paper industry to get it over this very severe slump.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Humber Valley, a supplementary.

MR. WOODFORD: A final supplementary, Mr. Speaker. The first part of my question, the minister did answer, however vague, but the second part of my question, he did not. I will ask again, has he been informed by the officials of Corner Brook pulp and paper of any further downtime, or layoffs, this year?

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

MR. FLIGHT: Mr. Speaker, I have not been informed of any specific downtime and layoffs. I have been informed that, because of the situation in the industry, all options are open and management is trying its best to maintain the operation, maintain production, without any further cuts. But they have retained the option, and as the member would know, the union is aware, that if things get any worse, they may have to look at future downtime or layoffs. But, at this point in time, I am not aware, with certainty, that there will be any more layoffs. I will be advised, I am sure, when management makes a definite decision on that.

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

MR. A. SNOW: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. My question is to the Minister of Municipal and Provincial Affairs. Yesterday, I asked the minister a question regarding the Labrador travel subsidy programme. In the answer he gave me, and I quote from yesterday's Hansard, he said: `the programme for travel subsidy for sport and culture in Labrador is administered locally in Labrador by a committee responsible, and that committee of course saw fit to spend and allocate all of the monies available in the first half of the fiscal year....'

That was part of his answer. Now that the minister has had the opportunity to reflect on that answer over the past day, could he tell this House and the people of Labrador, if he is not aware that there is no such committee?

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

MR. GULLAGE: No, Mr. Speaker, the advice given to me was that, in fact, there is a committee in place, and the committee decides the allocation of the funds, based on requests for school teams, mainly, although we do spend some money from the money allocated in the culture area. It is mostly sports. My advice is that there is a committee that makes a decision. In case that advice is wrong I will certainly check it out but that is what I have been told.

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

MR. A. SNOW: Mr. Speaker, I don't know who gave him the advice but it is undoubtedly wrong. I realize that the minister does have a heavy portfolio, but this programme is not administered by a committee, it is administered by officials of his department. When he refers to a committee, he is talking about block funding of $75,000 to the high school athletic federation. They administer that. That particular fund is block funded. Only $75,000 -

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

The hon. gentleman is on a supplementary. Get to the question.

MR. A. SNOW: - of the $312,000. Now, that is the correct information.

Mr. Speaker, having been educated into how the funding is not being available, would he now -

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. SIMMS: It might not be important to you, but it is important to the people of Labrador.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please! Order, please!

The hon. the Member for Menihek, please get to the question.

MR. A. SNOW: Mr. Speaker, my question to the minister is: will he now go back to the officials in his department - I repeat, the officials in his department - and seek extra funds so that this programme can be continued for the remainder of the year.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

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

MR. GULLAGE: Mr. Speaker, again I can repeat, the advice I was given by my officials is that there is, indeed, a committee. The fact that it is faced off, I guess, theoretically, against $75,000 for travel for the school teams, is hypothetical, really. Because the committee is consulted on all of the money that is spent, I am told, all of the $300,000.

AN HON. MEMBER: That's not true!

MR. GULLAGE: They are consulted and they are part of the process. The money has been expended, as I explained yesterday in the House. All the money has been expended in the first half of the fiscal year, Mr. Speaker, and we do not have any other funds available at this time, we are unable to identify any other funds, to spend on that particular programme.

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

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

The Minister of Health, in the October 20 edition of The Evening Telegram indicated that nursing homes are not the answer for the future. While this may be so, the requests for admission to these homes continues to grow as our population ages. The requests for admission in personal care homes, nursing homes and chronic care facilities continue to grow almost daily.

How does the Minister plan to deal with the present situation of nursing homes, or requests for admission to nursing homes? I know his plan for the future. What about the present? What is he intending to do?

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

MR. DECKER: Mr. Speaker, when the government changed a couple of years ago, we inherited one hell of a mess in the Health department. We have, today, nursing homes which are meant to take level 3 people. We have level 1s in level 3s. We inherited that. We have personal care homes where they should be all level ones; in these homes we have some level threes because the level three beds are blocked by some people who should be in personal care homes. It is a mess we are trying to deal with over the next few years, but I am afraid that in the interim we might have to over billet; we cannot put people on the street obviously. We might have to over billet for the next short while until we deal with the mess - inappropriate placement, it is unbelievable.

It is not fair to the people themselves, it is not fair to the system, it is not fair to the tax payer, but I can assure the hon. Member and I can assure the people of the Province, that the whole situation is in good hands and we are trying to deal with it in a very caring, thoughtful manner, considering the best interests of the people who are in those homes. We apologise to the people who are inappropriately placed, we apologise for the mistakes that our predecessors made, but we assure them that we are trying to deal with it in a very humane, careful, thoughtful manner, and the people can be thankful for that.

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

MR. WINSOR: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Political rhetoric does not solve the problem. The Minister said, and I quote: 'only those with chronic health problems and special needs should live in these institutional settings'. Following from this, then, it is only logical to assume that he is looking at some kind of home support services as the article indicates.

Let me ask the Minister this, then. Does he have a program in place so that skilled workers can go into these homes to help these people, or is it going to be a make work program, Department of Social Services or some other agency, or is there going to be a training program that he is going to put in place to help these people in the home situation?

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

MR. DECKER: Mr. Speaker, I do not think Your Honour would give me the time to fully address this question, but I will attempt to address it.

The hon. Member is talking about what we inherited. We inherited a system where, through the Social Services Department, unskilled workers were given ten weeks of work to go in and deliver some home care. This Government is in the process now of moving all home care under the Department of Health, so that we can organize it and do it in a very rational manner.

We are in the process of putting in place five home care boards throughout the Province, five regions: The Labrador North Region, The West Coast Region, Central, Eastern and a St. John's Region and under the auspices of the Department of Health, there will be a committee which will decide the level of care that a person requires.

We are not necessarily talking about senior citizens, we are talking about all people who need some level of care, and that Home Care Board, with the experts, in consultation with social workers, with a medical doctor, with the various public health nurses and the support staff, that Home Care Board, will decide the level of care that an individual needs, be it a half hour of service in their homes, someone who just needs help with daily living, or be it the services that a personal care home would offer, or be it the hospital or be it the level three nursing home. A very organized approach, Mr. Speaker, so that we can get away from this nonsense, where, someone who is not qualified is looking after people trying to deliver a service they cannot give. That is the kind of thing we inherited.

Difficult, difficult in these trying times, because also, Mr. Speaker, we are paying off $550 million worth of interest every year, which these people ran up on their drunken sailor approach to handling the economy, we have that to deal with. We have a recession, so it is extremely difficult to do the good things that must be done, but we are certainly trying our best.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

The hon. the Member for Fogo, on a supplementary.

MR. WINSOR: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, on another matter regarding health care, doctors have now given notice that they will no longer perform some functions they previously did for free, such as medical notes, medical examinations and so on. Since many people in Newfoundland still need these services, especially low income people, are finding it very difficult to come up with the money. Has the Minister given any consideration in implementing a plan to compensate the low income workers of this Province who will now suffer financially and possibly medically as a result of not being able to get this medical examination for free?

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

MR. DECKER: Mr. Speaker, I wish hon. Members would ask the Internal Economy Commission for some help with their research, because they are making fools of themselves in asking questions which are not adequately researched.

The fact of the matter is that since the 1960's when Medicare was brought into this Country by a great Liberal Government, there have been certain services which were not insured, and medical, Mr. Speaker, has never been insured. I have had several medicals at the Grenfell Mission Hospital in St. Anthony. I had to pay out for them. Medicals for insurance purposes were never insured, Mr. Speaker. There are a whole list of services which have never been insured by Medicare, and I am not sure that they should be insured by Medicare, Mr. Speaker. So I think the hon. Member is going to have to go to the Internal Economy Commission and try to get some extra research help, because they are making total fools of themselves, and they are not serving the public of this Province adequately when they put out misleading information, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

The hon. the Member for Grand Bank.

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

It is obvious that the Minister's medicals did not do much for him, but my question is to the Premier.

In the last couple of months there have been a couple of Ministers relieved of their duties. For various reasons they have been relieved of those duties. A straightforward question to the Premier: Has either one or both of those Ministers continued to receive ministerial salary or benefits?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: As hon. Members know, Ms. Cowan is ill - quite ill. She remains a Minister, and will attend -

AN HON. MEMBER: Remains a Minister?

PREMIER WELLS: Absolutely remains a Minister.

The Minister of Works, Services and Transportation remains a Minister, absolutely.

AN HON. MEMBER: He resigned.

PREMIER WELLS: No, he did not resign. They remain Ministers, Mr. Speaker, and will continue as Ministers; being relieved of the responsibility for a temporary period. Now I would hope that will come to an end any day now and the matter will be dealt with.

As to Ms. Cowan, I am not sure. Ms. Cowan has a fairly severe illness. It is a peculiar kind of illness, and I do not want to get into a detailed discussion of Ms. Cowan's illness, but she is capable of performing certain duties as a Minister. She has other limitations that would prevent her from fully discharging the duties in a line department.

They both remain as Ministers, Mr. Speaker.

AN HON. MEMBER: They are being paid?

PREMIER WELLS: Of course they are paid.

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

MR. HEARN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

My question is to the Minister of Education. In light of the uncertainty in the date of implementation of the new tax reform measures, I wonder what advice the Minister has for school tax authorities who are now trying to plan the rates for next year? Are they going to be in existence; are they going to be able to function as usual; or are they going to continue to flounder, the way the Minister and his Department is doing?

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

DR. WARREN: Mr. Speaker, the School Tax Authority is doing their duty. They are committed to education in this Province. They are collecting every cent they can get, and I encourage them to continue in the efficient manner in which they have performed in the past.

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

MR. HEARN: Is the Minister now saying that school tax authorities will still be in existence next year, because if not, how does he expect the general public to support an agency that may or may not be in existence?

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

DR. WARREN: Mr. Speaker, I am not saying anything about next year. The Government has indicated to the public that we are reviewing the options with respect to the whole school tax system, in the context of the tax review; but the public of this Province know that they have to pay for education. They are paying, and will continue to pay. They understand the problems with the present school tax system, Mr. Speaker. I do not want to get into these at the present time, but I tell the public through this House, that if the school tax system is retained, there will be major changes in the system. We will not, as a Government, continue to finance education in a way which discriminates against areas of this Province and people in this Province who need more services.

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

MR. HEARN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

The Minister is continuing to confuse the public with his theories that he has been spouting for years. People are looking for some action. They want to know what is going to happen to school tax authorities. The Premier says that he does not know when the new tax measures will be implemented. The school tax authorities have to set up to function next year. Are they going to be able to function, or are they not? That is the question.

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

DR. WARREN: Mr. Speaker, business as usual until the Government makes it's decision.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for St. John's East.

MR. HARRIS: Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations. Last March the House was advised in connection with the workers of Baie Verte Mines, who had lost their employment, that they would receive payments available to them under section 37 of the Labour Standards ahead of other creditors. Can the Minister advise the House whether or not all these workers have, in fact, been paid the maximum amount they are entitled to under section 37 of the act, or is there still more than 100 people who have not been paid?

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

MR. GRIMES: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I thank the hon. Member for his question. I will have to check the details of it. The only thing I could tell you directly in the House today and report to the hon. Member is that, in fact, there have been no complaints of non-payment that have surfaced in my office, so therefore I work on the assumption that the agreements that were reached and the understandings that were taken at the time are being fulfilled.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for St. John's East on a supplementary.

MR. HARRIS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Perhaps the Minister should check with his deputy and other officials of his department, and I would ask if he would undertake to do that and investigate the complaint that has been made to his department - perhaps not to him - that in excess of 100 people have not received the maximum of $2,000 that they were entitled to under section 37 of the act as a priority over other creditors. The Minister appears not to be aware of this problem. That is the case I take it. Will he undertake to look into this immediately and see that the problem is rectified?

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

MR. GRIMES: Yes, Mr. Speaker, most certainly I will undertake to look into the matter and see whether or not there is a complaint that should be dealt with immediately.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Mount Pearl.

MR. WINDSOR: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. My question is for the Minister of Municipal and Provincial Affairs. Yesterday in the Minister's statement he said, and I quote: "It will be my intention to continue discussions with the remaining groups of communities with a view to bringing about, by co-operation, those ones where there is substantial agreement and where amalgamations can be accommodated." This is a welcome change of policy. Will the Minister confirm that that is indeed the policy, and that is a policy that will be applied in the northeast Avalon?

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

MR. GULLAGE: Mr. Speaker, the statement is entirely correct. We have, since the process began some two years ago now, worked in co-operation will all 113 communities involved in the amalgamation process. That co-operation, I would think, will continue. I do not see any reason why the municipalities would not want to co-operate. They have co-operated so far, and certainly from our side we intend to co-operate with them.

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

MR. WINDSOR: Mr. Speaker, the Minister is fooling only himself. Would the Minister care to explain his statement of earlier this week that the fact that the City of Mount Pearl has established a fire hall, fire station and fire department in the City, is a danger to the people, is a safety problem? Would the Minister like to tell us how adding fire equipment and thirty-five or thirty-eight fire fighting people is creating a safety hazard?

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

MR. GULLAGE: Mr. Speaker, I welcome the opportunity, I can assure you.

Mr. Speaker, we have in place now a regional fire fighting service called the St. John's Fire Department which serves the northeast Avalon including Mount Pearl. The fact that the council of Mount Pearl has seen fit to man the existing station with a composite fire department, really, comprised of full-time paid fire fighters and volunteers is beside the fact. The Government intends, and has done so by way of resolution, to have and continue to have as it has now, a regional fire fighting service with equipment put in place, proper equipment that can service the needs of Mount Pearl, the needs of Paradise near by, and whatever communities can be served from that particular station. The equipment that is in place is not the proper equipment. The station does not have an aerial truck, for example, which costs a quarter of a million dollars and has to be put in place, I am told, to serve the area surrounding and including Mount Pearl. They cannot adequately cover, as I have said, the people of Mount Pearl, and cover for example, Donavans. Donavans is a major industrial park that requires equipment different than the equipment that is in place right now.

We also know, Mr. Speaker, that it will be necessary on an ongoing basis to provide service to the station in Mount Pearl when it is manned and in operation - backup service from other stations throughout the northeast Avalon - as in fact the existing five stations back up one another right now. So we fully intend to ensure that Mount Pearl is protected as it is now and protected by way of a station located in Mount Pearl with proper equipment and manned with trained firefighters comprised of people from the St. John's Fire Department, as in fact Mount Pearl is a party to and part of that agreement right now.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

Question Period has expired.

Before continuing with the routine business, on behalf of hon. Members I would like to extend a warm welcome to the members of the select committee on the Constitution from Ontario. These members are presently seated in the Speaker's Gallery. They are: the hon. Jenny Carter; the hon. Ernie Eves; the hon. Charles Harnick; the hon. Margaret Harrington; the hon. Yvonne O'Neill; and the hon. David Winninger. They are accompanied with staff members. Mr. Harold Brown, the Clerk of the House, and Philip Kaye, the research officer.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: Also, on behalf of hon. members, we would like to welcome twelve Grade XII students from Xavier High School in Deer Lake. They are also the basketball team which will be playing Mount Pearl. They are accompanied by their teachers, Bernard Ball and Charlie Barker.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: In the galleries today, as well, are sixty Grade IX students from St. Peter's Elementary School, Mount Pearl, accompanied by their teachers, Mr. Denine and Mr. Hatch.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

Presenting Reports by

Standing and Special Committees

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

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!


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

MR. HOGAN: I was waiting for the rubber boot gang to finish, Mr. Speaker.

I would like, at this time, to table the financial and statistical report from the division of Developmental and Rehabilitative Services in the department.

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

DR. KITCHEN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

In accordance with the requirements of The Financial Administration Act, I would like to table a pre-commitment totalling $58,475,000 against 1992-1993 appropriations, to facilitate the calling and awarding of tenders for highway projects under the Canada-Newfoundland Economic Regional Development Agreement, The Trans-Canada Highway Agreement, and Regional Trunk Roads Agreement, and the Provincial Roads programme.

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

MR. BAKER: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I would like to table the report of the Public Tender Act exceptions for September.

Orders of the Day

MR. BAKER: Motion 2, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: Motion 2.

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

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

Bill 44.

Are we ready for the question?

MR. WINDSOR: Mr. Chairman.

MR. CHAIRMAN: The hon. the Member for Mount Pearl.

MR. WINDSOR: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I would just like to take a few more moments. I have already spoken to this bill on two or three occasions. I would like to speak to it once more because I think, as I said yesterday, I do not think this bill is indicative of the real problem. This is an aspirin, a band aid solution; these are temporary jobs. This is funding for make-work programmes to try to help people who are in desperate situations over the coming months, to try to provide some employment to them so that they can feed their families and meet their commitments to get them though the winter.

But this is not the major problem. We are extremely concerned, obviously, about how the funds are being spent, about how they being allocated and the priorities that are being placed on them. We are continuing now, to have little bits of information being passed to us as to how the funds have been distributed and to which districts. My colleague from St. Mary's - The Capes outlined interesting facts last night, that so much - $18,000 I believe - has been spent in his district, whereas next door in the minister's own district, there has been three hundred and ninety-something thousand dollars spent.

Mr. Chairman, before the member for Lewisporte disappears - I was interested to read in `The Telegram', last night, of some statements coming from his own district about this programme. People of Horwood are not very happy with the Member for Lewisporte. They are saying they cannot get access to any of the funds that have been given to the Lewisporte area development association. I think they say, if I could quote them, Mr. Chairman - I have a very interesting statement here. They dealt with the minister. `A spokesman for the residents says the MHA for Lewisporte district is just not addressing the problem and he won't even return their calls.' It is interesting, Mr. Chairman. And we wonder why the people of Horwood are not able to get access to any of these funds, while people in Loon Bay and Birchy Bay, right next door, and Lewisporte, itself, are being given employment opportunities. Why are the people of Horwood being discriminated against? Essentially, Mr. Speaker, the people of Horwood are the same people who were told by the previous administration that their roads would be paved. It was not an election promise, as some hon. members opposite would like to have it portrayed. They were given a firm commitment by Government that roads would be paved and, of course, as soon as this Government took office that commitment was cancelled. It was not a commitment but a project that had been announced and the project was cancelled. Now, we see these people once again being discriminated against. The Member for Lewisporte is not in good stead in his district. I might say that people are having trouble finding him. Last summer, they found him high and dry on a rock out in the middle of Notre Dame Bay. It is now called MHAs rock, a new piece of geography in Newfoundland. It is a rock that has been there for centuries and everybody who ever went to Twist Chain Tickle knows where that rock is. The member found it one night and he very nicely distributed parts of his yacht all around that rock. That is quite a story from that area, Mr. Chairman, and people get a great kick out of it.

Mr. Chairman, as I started to say, and as long as my throat holds out, this piece of legislation is not, in itself, such a substantial piece of legislation, but it is indicative of the malaise that we face in this Province today, from an economic point of view. It shows the desperation of not only the people, but the desperation of this Government. It is an admission of their failure to create economic activity, and to create job opportunities. They have brought us very quickly into one of the worst unemployment situations we have faced in the history of this Province. Their own policy was against creating short-term employment opportunities. That was a stated policy of this Government and they have now had to change it out of desperation because there are so many people out there who are facing a long, cold winter and need help. I guess the frustrating part about it is that, even now, it is being distributed along political lines.

Well, Mr. Speaker, we need to address the much larger question, the state of the economy today. It is time for this Government to realize that their fiscal and economic policies are failing badly. It is time for them to realize we must have new initiatives and we must bring in place programmes to help private enterprise. This was a Government who said there would be no handouts. This is a Government who said, `We have to let private enterprise develop the Province. We have to let private enterprise create the jobs.' The Premier even paraphrased me one time, when he said, `It is Government's role to create an economic climate that is attractive for private enterprise to invest in,' a statement that I made, I would say, a hundred times over the past few years, one that I believe in, and one that I think, perhaps, the Premier, is finally starting to believe in. But what has this Government done to do that? These are hollow words, Mr. Chairman, if a Government does not put in place programmes to entice investors into this Province. How much have we seen? Precious little.

We saw a great announcement a couple of days ago, from the Minister of Development, in relation to the Marystown shipyard. Let me say that we welcome that particular company into Newfoundland and Labrador. They have tremendous strength and experience and expertise in the shipbuilding industry world-wide. We welcome this Norwegian company. I am familiar with them, of course, from past days dealing with them and with other similar companies, and I have seen some of their facilities in Norway.

They are one of the largest shipbuilding companies in the world and I think we are very fortunate to have this company invest in our Province. Unfortunately, Mr. Chairman, the investment, from their point of view, was far too small. It was not an investment, but a fire sale, that we saw. I think they paid something like $20 million - the minister can correct me - $20 million or $20.5 million to purchase a shipyard that is worth, I don't know how many tens of millions.


MR. WINDSOR: - Is it worth $40 million?

AN HON. MEMBER: Cow Head (inaudible).

MR. WINDSOR: Is that the debt that is on the shipyard now or was that the capital cost? But, then, you have the Cow Head facility, which I understand, was part of it, as well. We have already spent $12 million to put the initial wharf and docking facilities there six or seven years ago, and I believe there is $35 million or $38 million presently being spent; the contract is not completed. So, we are talking a $50 million facility at Cow Head and a $40 million facility, the minister says, in the existing shipyard - I would say it would be more that $40 million. I tell the minister, I don't think he could build that facility for $40 million today. The replacement value - what would be the replacement value of the Marystown shipyard?

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. WINDSOR: I realize it only has a value, and if nobody wants it, it is not worth anything. I realize that.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. WINDSOR: No, that's right, we put it up for sale, but we didn't want to give it away. So we managed to receive $20 million for $90 million worth of infrastructure. Maybe that is not such a bad deal. Obviously, the minister was totally incapable of attracting enough contracts to the shipyard to keep it operating. We are at the lowest employment level we have been, probably in the history of the shipyard, so, out of desperation, it was important to do something, and here was an opportunity. And I suspect that Kvaerner actually got the best side of that deal; they came in at a time when the minister was desperate, the shipyard was desperate, and the economy was desperate, which is always the best time to buy something. Now is the best time to start a business; certainly, interest rates are the most favourable we have seen for years. But why are interest rates so favourable? It is not because the banks and financial institutions are such great corporate citizens that they want to give everybody a hand, you can rest assured on that. When times are tough they make them tougher. They are acting out of desperation, as well, because they are not doing any business now. Their level of business had decreased drastically because of the state of the economy. So it is not out of love for private entrepreneurs that the banks have lowered their interest rates, Mr. Chairman, it is out of sheer desperation, themselves. They are getting desperate. Of course, the Bank of Canada is getting desperate. They are setting the pace, of course, and setting interest rates, as they always do. The Governor of the Bank of Canada basically controls interest rates and the other banks follow. They set the scene. So, the interest rates have been deliberately lowered to try to bolster up the economy a little bit.

It is indicative, Mr. Chairman, of the problem we are faced with, and that this Government has failed to address. As I said yesterday, I have not seen one new initiative come from Government to create jobs, to help private enterprise invest. In fact, programmes that we had initiated a few years ago to entice private enterprise to invest in the Province have been eliminated. Even the job-sharing programme, Mr. Chairman, which was an excellent programme - the Government of Canada now is doing one, I think, through CEIC and this Government may be involved in a small way - whereby the company who would hire an additional employee would receive 50 per cent funding from Government. It sounds like a handout, but it is not, Mr. Chairman. It is a matter of saying, we have to support that individual through a social program or we can assist private enterprise to create another job opportunity, to hire that person so he or she can be gainfully employed in a useful occupation, earning a full salary instead of social assistance. And the private enterprise, in turn, has a staff person, an employee working for them, at half the normal wages.

Now, that makes a lot of sense, Mr. Chairman, when you have a tremendously high unemployment rate in the Province, when you have business and industry who need additional assistance but because of the state of the economy are having problems finding it. That is the kind of programme that causes private enterprise to immediately invest money into the employment situation, and it is the kind of programme that would entice other investors into the Province, or those from within the Province to invest money that is now sitting in bank accounts.

I am told, Mr. Chairman, that right now, deposits in banks in saving accounts is probably the highest in our history. That tells us a lot too, Mr. Chairman. That tells us that there is no confidence in the economy, there is no confidence in what is going to happen tomorrow, and there is no confidence in those people that they can sustain themselves and their families tomorrow if they take those dollars and invest them in new enterprises.

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please!

The hon. the member's time has elapsed.

MR. WINDSOR: It is also, Mr. Chairman, an indication of loss of confidence in the Government.

I will have another opportunity, Mr. Chairman. Thank you.

MR. CHAIRMAN: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: Mr. Chairman, I am going to table some information on the numbers of persons who have been affected by the layoff. I am going to use a few minutes, perhaps abuse a few minutes, of the Committee's time to provide this information, because I am sure hon. members would like to hear some of it, some surprising figures.

We, Mr. Chairman, when the Opposition and leaders of the Public Service Union started to make these outlandish claims about how we are going to devastate the health care system, we are going to devastate the public services, we had to admit that if all of the saving we put in place were to be affected by salaries, there could be this number that could be affected. Now, Mr. Chairman, the numbers are startlingly low, but we saved the money. All that says to me is that there was tremendous waste in the public service and in the public sector generally, and we have caught a good deal of it without affecting large numbers of people.

Let me give some figures, Mr. Chairman. The grand total of vacancies, temporary positions and full-time positions in the direct public service, in the governmental departments, the line departments, is a total of 404. The grand total is 404. Yet, the Opposition and leaders of the public sector unions would have had us believe, and had the people of the Province believe -

AN HON. MEMBER: Thousands.

PREMIER WELLS: Thousands. We are going to devastate the public service. The hon. Member for Mount Pearl kept saying it is not 2000 it is going to be 3500. You will see when the numbers come in. I remember his roaring speeches in the House. Mr. Chairman, the total number is 404. Let me tell you something else, Mr. Chairman. In terms of the breakdown on the sector, of that total, in terms of the management or non-bargaining unit there was more than there was in the bargaining unit. There was a total of 140 in management, a non-bargaining unit, and a total of 110 in the bargaining sector. Now, Mr. Chairman, that is the reality of it.

Then, Mr. Chairman, there was a great hue and cry: it is going to unfairly affect women. Women were going to be unfairly affected and this was going to be a move against women, was the way it was argued. Remember those great arguments that were being made, particularly by the Member for Humber East. Let me tell you, Mr. Chairman, the breakdown: In the non-bargaining sector there were forty-one male employees laid off, eleven female, and a total of eighty-eight vacant positions eliminated. That is what happened.

In the bargaining sector, Mr. Chairman, there were a total of sixty-one male and thirty-nine point five female, so I guess that must have been a half time position, so forty female and sixty-one male, and twenty-six vacant positions eliminated.

The President of Treasury Board just gives me overall general figures, 2.4 per cent of female employees were laid off and 2.3 per cent of male employees. We have a lot more male employees so obviously the numbers for males would be much higher, but the percentages in each category were roughly the same. The grand total in the public sector, Mr. Chairman, was 404. Those are the thousands we were going to lay off.

Mr. Chairman, in the hospital sector it is more difficult. We do not yet have the numbers because you cannot really get a handle on it. There are people coming in for ten hours part-time instead of twenty hours part-time, so the same numbers would be affected but there is less work available. There are all sorts of factors, but in terms of the management positions I can give you that. There were 58.14, whatever that means, female management positions eliminated and 41.86 male management positions eliminated in eleven hospitals and nursing homes throughout the Province.

In terms of the community colleges, Mr. Chairman, the former Government had just put this structure in place and all they had was top weight. They put in place an inordinately expensive proposition so there were significant numbers laid off there, Mr. Chairman. The total layoffs and redundancies were 245 in the colleges and institutes. That does not include the university.

AN HON. MEMBER: Redundancies and layoffs?

PREMIER WELLS: Redundancies and layoffs combination, Mr. Chairman, 245. I will table this information and I will undertake with the House to try and get further information. It is a bit difficult to get the precise numbers in the medical sector. It is most difficult to tie it down and get absolute numbers. It is clear, Mr. Chairman, that there were far, far less numbers affected than we had anticipated. We could not stand in the House and say, no, it is only going to be these few numbers because we did not know how the managers were going to manage the budgetary reductions, but they were managed in such a way that there was

a far less severe effect on employment, and for that, Mr. Chairman, I have to say we are absolutely delighted, but we point out to hon. members Opposite and to the general public of the Province, when the Government cut in this way, we knew what we were doing. We knew there were excess expenditures, non-essential expenditures, a lot of money was being wasted and we could still provide good quality public services with a good deal less money than was being spent in the past. I might also point out, Mr. Chairman, some interesting comments over the course of the summer.

For example, there were more hospital beds open at the General Hospital this year than there were the year before, and I am told, but I am going to have it checked to make sure, it has been suggested to me that in fact there are more nurses employed this year than there were before, there were more nursing positions, yet they saved a good many millions of dollars by the Government being fairly tight in its budgeting, and I have no doubt, Mr. Chairman, that we will be able to achieve further savings in this coming year and we will be working toward that end; to try and cut out the waste that had crept into the public service and the public sector over a large number of years.

We still have a big task ahead of us, Mr. Chairman, to make sure that we manage the affairs of the Province in a sound and sensible way, but as I am sure all hon. members realize, the Government is dedicated to achieving it. Thank you very much.

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

MR. HEARN: Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. Now I think we have seen it; we have heard the admission that the Premier was wrong all along. First of all, he talks about not being able to lay off so many people simply because they found out that the fat really was not there, consequently the Budget is out of whack.

By eliminating vacant positions you certainly do not save any money, so once again it has no effect on your Budget; oh, we have eliminated x number of positions - but they were already vacant, so there is no savings there and when you got down to the nuts and bolts of it, they found out that they could not cut because cuts had already been made over the years and the public service had been trimmed, in fact to the point in some areas where there were not enough workers to do the jobs.

Now here we have the Premier this morning after saying that, after admitting that he had goofed, saying: but we are going to continue to trim the public service to save money. He was not listening to the radio this morning when the Minister of Social Services was saying that he had to beef up his department, so one of them does not know what is going on and it could be either one or the other.

The Minister of Social Services this morning said: more people are needed on the front line and he is right, he is definitely right, social workers, social assistance people - the Minister is right. If the Minister would research Hansard, he would find out that he was told some months ago that he should not be eliminating positions on the front line.

Let me give the Minister an example: in his own home town of St. Mary's, where the former minister, because they were Tories as he said here in the House and it is in Hansard, eliminated the supervisor's position and put all the extra work load on the people who were involved, who were left there, the social workers, the social assistance workers, whatever.

AN HON. MEMBER: Arnold's Cove.

MR. HEARN: Arnold's Cove might have been cut also. If that is the case I am sure they are finding what our people are finding, that they can no longer handle the work load and the member nods his head in approval, that the people on the front line are now overworked.

Last night we saw an example of the increase in case load, consequently somebody has to address the ever increasing problems. Who are the people to do it?...the front line people. You do not help people by eliminating positions on the front line, as was done in St. Mary's. What is happening, you have the secretary having to do the work of social assistance workers to try to help out in the office.

The other thing I heard the Minister say this morning, with which I agree fully, is that there are too many levels of bureaucracy in the Department. The Minister is again right. A few months ago when the supervisor's position was in place in the district office, certainly the one in St. Mary's, a fair number of decisions could be made locally. There was somebody there to say yes or no to reasonable requests. Now, over the last few months, for the smallest of requests we must go to Harbour Grace. To get the message to Harbour Grace and to get a reply back takes days, sometimes. Then quite often it has to be passed on because the direction, apparently under the former Minster, had to come from him. So it would take months sometimes to get an answer to the simplest of requests - bureaucracy.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. HEARN: Well, maybe it is not the Minister's fault, but the bureaucracy has increased. So when the Minister says that he has to eliminate lines of bureaucracy, he is right. Many simple requests have to be dealt with at the local level in order to help people when they need help.

Just looking at the list that was supplied this morning: from 1986, 1987 to 1988 we saw a drop in the caseload. From 1988 to 1989 we saw another drop in the caseload, down to 19,600. Then, from 1989 to l990, when this Government came into power, we saw an increase in the caseload, up to over 20,000 again; from 1990 to 1991, up to 23,000; from 1991, last year to this present year, the projected increase up to 24,900 in the caseload. Now, a lot of that has to do with the economy and world-wide recession; not necessarily the inefficiencies of Government, but certainly it adds to it. What it does point out, forgetting the politics or the reasons, is that there are a lot of people out there right now who require help from the Department of Social Services. In order to be able to address these needs, the Minister needs front-line people, and he is right when he says: we must beef up the front line. I hope his colleagues in Government understand that, and you cannot beef up your front line by eliminating positions. Hopefully, to cut out the bureaucracy, to cut out the waste of time in going through these bureaucratic levels, to be able to help people where they need help, hopefully the Minister can reinstate some of the positions that were cut by the former Minister when he was in the Department.

The child welfare cases have also increased; in the first four months, 756 versus 710 just four months ago; more work for the front-line people. Youth corrections, which undoubtedly in some areas are dealt with originally at the local level, are up significantly - 25 per cent in youth correction cases - an increase. Now that, I think, says a lot more than the fact that there is an increase in numbers. Why have we so many problems with our youth? One of the big answers of course, is unemployment; looking for something to do, and idle hands make light work, people say. Consequently, when you do not have anything to do, the tendency is to do the wrong thing, to get involved with the wrong bunch. So consequently the employment picture is extremely important here. That is why, when we have been talking the last few days about the need to create jobs, keeping in mind that everyone appreciates the efforts that have been made to date, but it is only a drop in the bucket. To really zero in on the problem we have to try to find better employment opportunities, not only for the working people out there, but for the young people who are unemployed, because here we can see what is happening - a 25 per cent increase over last year in youth corrections, people in open and secure custody. That is terrible.

The other thing it points out, I suppose, or it questions, is our educational system. The Minister of Education last night made some very good points when he said that education is the answer to a lot of our problems. By properly educating our people, we will avoid a lot of the economic problems we are facing today. Sometimes we wonder. We see a lot of training programmes now being brought in, but we wonder who really benefits from them, whether it is the people who obtain the training, or whether it is the facilities, the institutions, that provide the training and develop the courses, and charge exorbitant fees for doing so; or the consultants who go out and do all the studies to find out whether or not certain jobs should be placed in certain areas or whatever. So I question how we are spending some of the money that is targeted under educational headings. We have to look, I think, at getting the dollars where the dollars are needed, and that is into the pockets of the people who are directly affected or benefit from our educational services.

The ironic thing, I suppose, about the Minister of Education's comments last night, as he talked about our future depending on education, he was saying that in one breath, and on the other hand he has completely disrupted the educational system in the Province. He has put the educational system back about twenty years by cutting here, there and everywhere, by cutting off relations with the field, by creating so much uncertainty in the field of education that it is not supported any more as it was, by affecting the operations of school boards, by cutting funding to them, by cutting positions, by causing confusion over the dealings with teacher assistance - teacher aides, and so on. So it is great to be able to talk about something, but to be able to deliver is something else.

Hopefully, Mr. Chairman, in light of the horrendous facts and figures provided over the last few days by the Minister of Social Services that is one field at least we can address. If the Minister gets his front line people maybe we can start addressing some of the needs.

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

MR. SIMMS: (Inaudible).

MR. K. AYLWARD: The Leader of the Opposition is giving me a hard time already, and I have not even started speaking, Mr. Chairman. I must say that I want to congratulate the new Leader of the Opposition and the Leader of the Progressive Conservative Party on his new role. I wish him luck, but not too much, in carrying out his duties - not as much he would like to have himself. Also to the new House Leader I bring the same greeting. That is about as nice as I am going to get this morning, Mr. Chairman.

I have heard a few things about our economic performance, and I have heard a few things from the Opposition about getting public input into our economic policies and so on, but I think, Mr. Chairman, that the Opposition has missed the boat a little bit. The new PC party is now planning provincially to have public forums on policy input - that is what I read in the paper - new policy input plans, and they are going to go around and have these little meetings with people around the Province and get their input on the economy. Now we are way ahead of that, Mr. Chairman, and we decided to put a plan of action in place to deal with the problems.

Now the only thing is I noticed that when the leader spoke about going around he promised that the forums would be low cost with no high registration fees or high priced meals - calling public meetings is just an opportunity for people to give their ideas.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. K. AYLWARD: And on other things too, I am sure, on policy. That is a good idea for a party that is in Opposition because you have to get new ideas to be a good Opposition and to present constructive ideas to the Government in power. This is what we used to do as a matter of fact, some very good ideas, now with the Government trying to resolve the problems that we have. But you know, Mr. Chairman, you cannot just solve the problems by going out and borrowing money all the time. It would be a lovely thing to be able to do, and it is something that the former Government did many times when they got into trouble.

I think one of the problems we have, and many of us have on this side, is that we all have social consciences too, but the problem is even if you wanted to go and borrow the funds you would have an extremely difficult time in doing so. So you are really caught between the proverbial rock and a hard place trying to figure out how you resolve the problem in the economy. Therefore the Government is being squeezed on all sides in trying to develop and deal with a crisis which is mostly not of our making and we are trying to come up with some solutions. So we are trying to plan long-term for the long-term, we are trying to deal with the short-term through some employment programmes which the Government has brought in and developed. They are very good I might add. I commend the Cabinet Ministers responsible for the new programmes because they have dealt with some needs in certain areas that were never addressed in recreation, tourism, and forestry and in other areas. These funding mechanisms have been put in place to allow for some funds to be spent in areas that were needed, not just going out and making work for the sake of making work. Some things that were needed to be done we could do with the short-term projects which are for benefit for the long-term which is again what the Provincial Government is trying to do. I have to respond to some comments made by the Opposition. When they talk about the economy and the recession it is almost like they are saying this Government is responsible but the Provincial Government of Newfoundland does not set the interest rates in Canada. Mr. Mulroney, who appoints the governor of the Bank of Canada, sets the interest rates. The Government of Newfoundland does not set the Canadian dollar rate, it does not set the US dollar rate, so when Abitibi-Price is having a problem, and when Kruger are having problems exporting to the US, or the fishing companies are having problems because of a low Canadian dollar, or a high Canadian dollar versus the US dollar, the Provincial Government has a hard time dealing with that. How do you deal with that when it is not your responsibility, when it is not in your jurisdiction? So, on those two ends we have been nailed but it is totally out of our jurisdiction and we are trying to deal with it as best we can. Our budgetary problems are there now in most instances because of a recession created, and a decline in the fishery, again created and due to something that is beyond our control, beyond this Government's control. This Government is attempting to get some of that control and attempting to deal with the problem. You can throw all the volleys you want but the fact of the matter is that we are not responsible for it. We will do everything we can to resolve it but we are not totally responsible for it. What gets me a little poisoned, Mr. Chairman, is that the Federal Government - it does not matter what stripe they are - but it just so happens that they are better buddies of the crowd on the other side than they are of this side because they are of the same political stipe. Now, the same crowd up in Ottawa are paying about as much attention to Newfoundland these days as they are to a whole range of other groups in Canada, as you can see by the public opinion polls. I had a press release that came to my office the other day. It says: the Federal Government takes action to assist farmers - again, and again, and again - Agricultural Minister, Bill McKnight today announced an $800 million farm aid package as part of a comprehensive strategy. The strategy includes stepping up pressure to resolve the international trade war between the US in Europe which has drastically undercut Canadian grain prices and exploring increasing credit for grain sales and other products to the Soviet Union. Last week Mr. Mulroney called on his group of strategists on farm aid to come up with other ways to help the grain sector.

The Prime Minister, Mr. Mulroney, is totally getting involved in trying to help the farmers in western Canada and for that we applaud him, but farm aid and farming is in a provincial jurisdiction. We have given them, the Federal Government of Canada, tax dollars from all of us since 1986. I will read off the amount of farm aid given to western Canada since 1986. In 1986, $1 billion, $1.1 billion in 1987, $850 million in 1988, $500 million in 1990, $640 million in 1991, and I think the $800 million is on top of the $640, and they are not finished yet, they are still looking for more ways. They are working on all the Governments in the world, they are going to GATT, and they are trying to work out the problems with the trade war on grain. Good stuff. And what do we have? We have a 200 mile fishing zone out there and they do not even know it exists. The fishery around here is trying to protect the fish stocks, we have real problems, and they do not even know it exists. Mr. Crosbie, is trying to do his best but I am starting to get extremely disappointed with what is happening up there concerning our fishery. Our Government is attempting and trying to give as much attention to the issue as they can but it is very difficult when their ears are closed.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible)

MR. K. AYLWARD: It is a major, major problem but we are not to blame. We are trying our best. I mean, you cannot - you are there working in an environment where we hardly control any of the levers, and it is ridiculous.

Our Minister of Fisheries and this Government have put a number of proposals forward for aid programmes, for joint sharing of the management of the fishery, and the response has been too negative. They haven't been listening. So it is time that the Federal Government listened to the Provincial Government down here so that we can attempt to deal with the problems. But when I hear the Opposition saying, you know: `You are not doing anything over there and you don't have a plan, and you aren't going anywhere,' well, I say they are absolutely wrong. Because we are doing the best we can, given the circumstances.

I would like to quote from a press release from the hon. Government of Newfoundland, 1984, that is, the former government: `Most experts believe the recession in Newfoundland has bottomed out, finally, but it will be some time before we will see our revenues rebound strongly. Until then we must be realistic and wise managers of the income that we do have. To get $25 million' - which was what the impact was then, in 1984 - `in our income tax, we would have to raise our income tax substantially and our sales tax would have to be raised to 14 per cent.' That was back in 1984.

So, what we are saying there is, we have to be wise managers of our money, and they were saying that in 1984. They were saying we had a major problem then.

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please!

The hon. Member's time has elapsed.

AN HON. MEMBER: By leave!

MR. K. AYLWARD: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I will just conclude by saying that I look forward to hearing some constructive ideas from the other side. But we are doing the best we can over here. We are not going to do everything right, but we are trying to do the best we can, and I look forward to many positive measures coming forward that we have already initiated. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

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

MR. WARREN: Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. I don't know if it will be constructive criticism or not, but that will be left for the members of this House to judge. However, in the next few minutes, I want to discuss my last twenty-four hours or so that I spent up in Labrador.

Back in September, the Premier announced an advisory committee on the economy, led by Mr. Harold Lundrigan. During the last two days, this committee went to Labrador West and had public meetings. In Goose Bay, yesterday, they accepted briefs. Last night there was a round table discussion. My hon. colleague from Stephenville said, `Let's hear something concrete, something serious.

I would like to say to my hon. colleague that each and every person who spoke to this group that the Premier announced back in September gave a loud and clear message. That message was that if the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador doesn't pull up its socks and better treat the people of Labrador, then the possibility exists that they will be asking for alternatives. It is serious. Every person who spoke - Peter Woodward, the President of the Chamber of Commerce, Dr. Sparkes, the President of the Labrador Community College, Carol Brice-Bennett, Memorial University, Tom Paddon, with the combined councils - the same message was there, loud and clear: If the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador continue to treat us as second-class citizens, then we want something else. And I said, in my remarks, that if, today, the people in Labrador were given a choice by secret ballot, it would be most interesting to know what the final tally would be. I do not think it would be in favour of remaining part of the Province of Newfoundland. That is the unfortunate, sad part about it, that governments since 1949 have looked at Labrador as second-class citizens. Back in September, when interviewed by The Labradorian, in response to the question, `Mr. Premier, do you not think that Labrador is something special? Do you not think that Labrador is unique?' the Premier had the gall to say, `Labrador is no different from the Burin Peninsula.'

Labrador is a lot different from the Burin Peninsula, a lot different from the Avalon and Bonavista Peninsulas. It is unique, Mr. Chairman. Yesterday, it was said by the LIA and by everybody else that it is unique and it definitely needs attention. Roughly 30,000 people are there. Look at all the monies coming out but actually not put back there. Most interesting was what Peter Woodward said yesterday. Now, I am sure a lot of my colleagues opposite know who Peter Woodward is. He said, in two years time, when the Trans-Labrador Highway is completed to Goose Bay, except for probably milk products that are controlled by boards in our Province, practically 85 per cent or 90 per cent of the goods needed in Labrador will be trucked from Quebec over to Goose Bay, and the only goods that the people of Labrador will be buying from the Province will be those controlled by marketing boards.

AN HON. MEMBER: What does that have to do with the bill?

MR. WARREN: Mr. Chairman, that has a lot to do with the bill, because it is about government spending, and this bill is about government spending. I say to my hon. colleague, who spent some time in Labrador over the years, that I am sure he had the same feeling then as is up there now, except that it has mushroomed - the feeling is increasing, because the Premier has continuously said Labrador is no different from any other part of our Province. That is not correct.

This Government has gone now for the last four months without anybody from Labrador in the Cabinet. My colleague from Eagle River is capable of being in Cabinet; he should have been in Cabinet a long time ago.

MR. SIMMS: Let's see if we're successful getting `Aubrey' in first, then we will work on `Danny'.

MR. WARREN: No, Mr. Chairman, I say to my hon. Leader that I would like to see the Member for Labrador in there first. He should have been in Cabinet a number of weeks ago.


MR. SIMMS: That's the difference over here, we're allowed to speak our minds. It's not like that over there!

MR. WARREN: Mr. Chairman, at the meetings yesterday, the message was loud and clear to Mr. Lundrigan. Because I understand the way this system works is that Harold Marshall is called with some kind of a problem, he calls Susan Sherk, who, in turn, calls Harold Lundrigan with the problem, and Harold Lundrigan then goes to the Premier. That's what is happening in Labrador.

MR. SIMMS: What about the Minister of Development?

MR. WARREN: The Minister of Development is way out of the picture altogether.

MR. SIMMS: What?

MR. WARREN: The Minister of Development is completely out of the picture. In fact, Mr. Chairman, I understand that an employee who recently resigned in Labrador is taking the department, is taking Government, to court, with legal action over unlawful dismissal, apparently, just to show the incompetence of the minister.

AN HON. MEMBER: His logic is shattered (inaudible).

MR. WARREN: Mr. Chairman, let me say to my hon. colleague, the hon. the minister's logic in keeping a Government report -


MR. WARREN: The hon. the Member for St. Barbe, the hon. the minister, knows that he has had a report on the Government stores for the last nine months, and he will not release the report to the public.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. SIMMS: Why do you respond? They are really upset over there now.

MR. WARREN: The hon. gentleman has the report of the Government stores and will not release it to the public. Well, I had to go ahead and release it, and he is very upset.

AN HON. MEMBER: Is he embarrassed?

MR. SIMMS: No, not one bit.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. SIMMS: He has really got you going.

MR. WARREN: Mr. Chairman, I don't know why the hon. the Member for St. Barbe is upset.

MR. SIMMS: The House Leader should talk to him and try to settle him down. He has gone right off the head over there this morning.

MR. WARREN: He gets upset as soon as I mention his department. Knowing he doesn't have any credibility, he gets upset. None of the employees in his department look upon him as a very strong minister. They have more respect for Harold Marshall and Susan Sherk.

Mr. Chairman, my hon. colleague from Eagle River phoned all the councils in my district and said, I want to advise you that you have $20,000 approved for this or $15,000 approved for this. I must say, the member did a good thing. By the way, I am quite pleased with the number of projects ongoing in my district this past year through emergency programming. I compliment the Department of Social Services and the Department of Fisheries. My hon. colleague, the Minister of Fisheries, announced six projects, one in each community, in my district a few days ago. But these are things that should be done, not because it is a Liberal or a Tory district, but because the need was there. I am quite pleased that the minister did see fit to announce them.

But my colleague, the hon. the Leader of the Opposition, will want to hear this before he gets too carried away: I want to give one example of how competent the minister's department is in Labrador, and let the minister know about an incident that happened in Rigolet.

AN HON. MEMBER: What does that have to do with the bill?

MR. WARREN: It has a lot to do with the bill, because the money has been spent from his department.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. WARREN: Exactly. Let me just tell the minister what happened.

AN HON. MEMBER: What department are you talking about?

MR. WARREN: The Department of Development.

AN HON. MEMBER: You're saying there is money in (inaudible)?

MR. WARREN: Well, there are monies in the bill to be spent.

Anyway, Mr. Chairman, the Town Clerk from Rigolet was told by the Member for Eagle River -

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

The hon. member's time has elapsed.

MR. WARREN: By leave, Mr. Chairman!


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

MR. EFFORD: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

I was worried there for a second, I thought the Chairman had forgotten the district that I represent.


MR. CHAIRMAN: I was going to say `minister'.


MR. EFFORD: The old floorwalker should stay here and listen for a few minutes.

Mr. Chairman, I am not going to be political at all, this morning. I have to take a couple of minutes of the time of the House of Assembly to make some comments, not political comments, but just common sense, some comments that need to be made this morning in answer to some of the accusations that were made by the hon. the Member for Mount Pearl and the floorwalker from Torngat Mountains just a second ago, and the Member for St. Mary's - The Capes.

AN HON. MEMBER: The phantom!

MR. EFFORD: The phantom! From where?

AN HON. MEMBER: From George Street.

MR. EFFORD: The phantom from George Street. But you know, you can't keep standing up in the House of Assembly, making accusations without any foundation, just for the sake of making them. I have to stand in defence - it is not very often I stand in defence of anybody, because I am usually attacking - of the hon. the Minister of Development.

The Member for Torngat Mountains just commented that the minister is not a strong minister, that he is not in control of his department. The job-sharing Member for Mount Pearl, stated that what the Minister of Development did in Marystown in the last couple of weeks, with the sale of the Marystown shipyard, was not close to what he was going to sell it for.

MR. MURPHY: A dollar. He is right.

MR. EFFORD: One dollar, he was right on that. I have to comment, he was certainly right on that. But let me say, if what they are saying is true, that the minister is not a strong minister, not in control of the department, and they are judging according to the ministers they had over seventeen years, what would you call those ministers? - Non-existent?

MR. MURPHY: A good question.

MR. EFFORD: A good question - I don't know, according to that, if there is a word in the dictionary that could describe it. Because the former Minister of Development who spoke, (inaudible) the hon. the Member for Mount Pearl, said that -

MR. MURPHY: `Barrett' - he spent more time on airplanes than he did in the House.

MR. EFFORD: More times outside of Newfoundland.

AN HON. MEMBER: More points than Wilt Chamberlain.

MR. EFFORD: That is a good comparison, more points than Wilt Chamberlain. Yes, that is a fact! But nonetheless, let us get down to some facts.

In the twenty-four years since the Marystown Shipyard was founded, how many dollars did the former government put into it? One question, very simple, how many dollars did the former administration put into the Marystown Shipyard in all of its existence? Would you believe $105 million?


MR. EFFORD: $105 million -

AN HON. MEMBER: That cannot be right.

MR. EFFORD: - in the twenty-four years the former administration put $105 million into the Marystown Shipyard. Now listen, they intended selling it and the Member for Mount Pearl was a part of that Government, I believe he was then the Minister, and he went out and advertised with all of the ability and expertise that they had in the Government, they put it up for sale. A very reasonable decision to make, to try and sell the Marystown Shipyard; something that was costing the tax payers a lot of money, and Government should not be involved in that sort of business, yet they put it up for sale. Do you know what they were offered for it, for a $105 million investment? One dollar. And by putting up that one dollar they were still requested to put up working capital. One dollar for a $105 million investment - and we wonder why they built the cucumber farm? We wonder why, with their expertise, they tried to sell a shipyard for one dollar.

AN HON. MEMBER: They would not sell it, they (inaudible).

MR. EFFORD: Now what did our - as the Member for Torngat Mountains just said earlier - our weak Minister of Development do today? Not a strong Minister he said. His ministers could not sell it or only tried to and had an offer of one dollar - what our present Minister of Development, who is not in control of the Department, who does not understand business at all, what has he done? Just recently, it was announced last week - with a debt load of $36 million - he went and he attracted a firm from Norway, a world wide, world renowned firm from Norway which has all kinds of manufacturing expertise right around the world. He sat down, a man who has no ability, sat down and sold the same firm that they could not sell for one dollar, for $20.5 million. Now everybody in this Province should be aware of that. $20.5 million.

Do we put up any working capital? No; no working capital whatsoever. Will they maintain the same employees benefits? Yes, absolutely. Will all the agreements that are in place now, be the same for the employees? Yes. In fact, I will take it one step further, even beyond the information, I would say that, with this company who has the world reputation for manufacturing and some 18,000 employees, I would say, over the years when they get their feet in and become established, it would be even better than it is today for the workers in Marystown. Even better than it is today.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. EFFORD: Will all the training be in place? Yes, and improvements. Will all the jobs be in place under the present agreement? Yes, and as they build up and as they increase and as they pick up more contracts, there will be more jobs no doubt. What are they going to do with the Marystown Shipyard as far as it concerns the rest of North America? They are going to use it as a leading company for manufacturing and fabrication for the rest of North America. Just imagine, Newfoundland, little old Marystown, little old Newfoundland, a company with 18,000 employees has been brought into the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador and for a change, instead of giving away everything as we did for the last eighteen years, with the former administration giving away everything, we are finally getting something based with some solid foundation, some world expertise, expertise and knowledge gained all over the world is going to happen right here in Marystown.

Now I ask you, does that say that the Department of Development is under the leadership of a weak Minister? Absolutely not. There is a lot of difference between one dollar and $20.5 million. I am accused of being the richest man in Newfoundland, the richest man in the system. I wish I had the difference between one dollar and $20.5 million in my bank account. I would not worry about what I was going to do next year.

AN HON. MEMBER: In addition to what you have.

MR. EFFORD: In addition to what I have, yes. I wish that we had the difference between that one dollar and the sale to put in the pockets of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians all over the years to create jobs.

AN HON. MEMBER: Same as Sprung.

MR. EFFORD: Mr. Chairman, it is very evident that the sale of the Marystown Shipyard is not only beneficial to the workers in Marystown, but it is beneficial to every taxpayer in the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador. That is the key. Not only to the workers and the good people in that area, which is of vital importance. Because there are enough people working in doubt of their jobs and in fear of losing their jobs. Now there is some solid foundation put back into that Shipyard that should have been put there many years ago. And that the protection and the future of the Marystown Shipyard is not a worry with those people any more.

I can tell you, with a company that has 18,000 employees worldwide, you can say nothing else but there has to be confidence placed in the minds of every person. The business group. I saw some business people on CBC television the other night, worried about the future of their own personal business, like Home Hardware, like the restaurants, like the small hotels and stuff up there. I mean, they must have a tremendous uplift now over the fact that this agreement has been signed. It is not talk any more, it is not lip service any more, it is a reality.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. EFFORD: One hundred and fifty. I wonder could I get on there, and get a trip to Norway? One hundred and fifty employees, just imagine. One hundred and fifty employees going to Norway next year for a training programme. Just imagine the expertise that they will bring back and pass on to other employees and other people in the area.

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

The hon. Member's time has elapsed.

MR. EFFORD: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I now put the question. Question?

SOME HON. MEMBERS: By leave, by leave!

MR. CHAIRMAN: The hon. Member by leave.

MR. EFFORD: Well, I will just take another minute, Mr. Chairman, to clue up. Because I do want to pass along not only congratulations to the Minister of Development and his Department for doing such an excellent job, but we have to congratulate and pass a few comments along to the people in Marystown for their expertise, that they have kept that going over the years. It was not their fault that the former administration bungled everything that was within there, and never put any sound administration to deal with the debt load and everything.

But the fact is now there is a future, there is a bright light at the end of the tunnel, and there is a future for the people in the Marystown Shipyard and Cow Head. That is the good, positive thing for the people of Newfoundland and Labrador. We will not have the burden of paying out the taxpayers' money. We can put it into other areas where it is needed, in health, education, to educate and train our young people - we are going to get some positive feedback in the future.

Once again, Mr. Chairman, congratulations to the strong Minister of Development.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

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

MR. WOODFORD: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I would like to have a few comments pertaining to Bill 44. I guess a lot has been said over the last number of days pertaining to different problems around the Province. Very little, I suppose, when you talk about the very Bill itself. One of the things that strikes me in the Bill, one that comes to mind and the one that I would like to have a few comments on, is the one pertaining to forestry and agriculture.

I am not even going to allude and talk about the actual funding itself pertaining to different projects under this particular part of supplementary supply. But I would like to talk about industry in itself in general across the Province, and more specifically as it pertains to the district of Humber Valley.

Over the last couple of years for different reasons - I will not say, and I would be the first to say, it is not all because of a government; whether it is Provincial or Federal - some of the problems associated with the closing of industries in this Province, no doubt, are the responsibility of the Provincial Government as well as the Federal Government.

But, Mr. Chairman, when you look back over the past couple of years, and see the industries, and take note of the industries that have closed in this Province, it is just staggering; and we are not finished, Mr. Chairman. The hon. Member just got up and mentioned about the Minister of Development and the Marystown Shipyard. Mr. Chairman, I would like to remind hon. Members that it was not too long ago when each year forty or fifty people from Marystown were going off to Norway, training in welding and in other industries as well, bringing back the expertise to be used on the Hibernia development specifically. It was the right thing to do, and it still is, as far as I am concerned, the right thing to do. The only difference, Mr. Chairman, is that I hope this time when they come back they will be able to put their expertise to use.

You talk about times and circumstances making a difference in an industry in the Province. When they went before and came back, like I said, it was based primarily on the Hibernia development; this time, Mr. Chairman, when they come back, they have a 95 per cent chance of putting their expertise to work, because the project is started. That is why the Minister was so successful in selling the Marystown operation to Kvaerner of Norway. They have been in the industry for a lifetime, and when I say lifetime, I do not know exactly, but I would say they started in shipbuilding and all, over 100 years ago, if I am not mistaken. I believe they operated out of Stavanger or Stord, in Norway, operating all over Europe, started to get into North America, and have operations in the North Sea. They are a very reputable company, and I am sure that if it is any way possible, they will make a difference to the Marystown operation. But, Mr. Chairman, and I would like to go on record as saying this, it all depends on tenders. When the tender is called is one thing; when the tender is let is another. I have a company very close to my area of the Province, namely Lundrigans, who put millions and millions and millions into work on the Hibernia development, in getting ready for it. Mr. Chairman, they lost their shirts on getting ready for Hibernia. They did not get the tenders, or some of the tenders that were involved. Mr. Chairman, when you have the hon. Member for St. John's South talking about promises - now you had better not start bringing up about promises - because a lot of that can be sort of-

AN HON. MEMBER: The refrigerator list.

MR. WOODFORD: Yes, the refrigerator list, I could start with that. That is promises, Mr. Chairman, not only were the promises made, and still are being made today, but those were private companies, and the same people are there today. The Premier and his Administration have all kinds of confidence in them, because Mr. Lundrigan is chairing the Advisory Council today, going around the Province, asking the people to give him some ideas on what they should do to create jobs in this Province.

I would say, Mr. Chairman, that according to the numbers that are showing up at those meetings, I do not think there are going to be very many ideas come back. People do not have time to go to the meetings for one thing. They probably do not even have the resources unless they live close to the meeting hall, very close to the meeting hall, because they are too busy trying to fill their stomachs and look after their families. They just do not have the time, and the ideas are just not there.

When I see the Vice-Chairman of the Advisory Council, in an interview with CBC, saying that Newfoundlanders and Labradorians should depend more on themselves, and should show more initiative, and not be coming to Government looking for handouts, then I question the validity of that statement. When that same individual, only a few short years ago, took something like $200 and some odd million out of the coffers of this Province to modernize the pulp and paper industry in this Province. Then they come back and tell the ordinary taxpayer that they should not come looking to Government for help. That is a representative of Kruger.

Mr. Chairman, I have to touch on something that is becoming very dear to my heart, especially lately, and that is the fishery. The fishery over the last couple of years, especially, has taken a beating. I go on record as agreeing with most of the speakers who spoke last night and during the last week or so, on both sides of the House, with regard to overfishing. I for one, as far as I am concerned, would go on record and would request and state that not one pound of what can be allocated strictly under the Canadian Government, under the Department of Fisheries, should be allocated to a foreign country unless we get something in return. Give us something. Either when it is caught bring it into our plants or forget it. When I look at a company in my district that has to beg for 1000 tons of squid, from the offshore quota for squid and wait twelve to eighteen months to get a permit, and when I see someone being offered and given permits to harvest 31 million tons of squid offshore that to me, Mr. Chairman, is wrong. That is a travesty and that is an injustice that should not be put up with regardless. I do not care who is in Ottawa, whether it is Mr. Mulroney, whether it was Mr. Trudeau, Ms McLaughlin, or whoever goes there, I will be the first one to say get off your butts and do something about it. It is about time.

Mr. Chairman, we have ten or twelve tuna fishermen in this Province with a commercial license, begging to get out and hook a few tuna, good prices, guaranteed sale, and what do they have to do to get the twelve licenses? Here we go the other day and give ten or twelve licenses to Japanese vessels just off the coast. That to me is wrong and that is the type of thing that we have to address, but we have to do it collectively. You are not going to gain anything by getting up in this House and tearing strips off anybody, whether they are here or whether they are outside this Province, namely the Feds. Do it in a constructive manner and we may be able to accomplish something, but if we are going to get up here for our own personal egos and try to gain political points we are not going to win. Once election time is called we are answerable to the people in our districts. I am answerable to the people in the district of Humber Valley and if I cannot answer in a positive and constructive way what I have done for the previous three and a half to four years then I should not be the candidate and I should not be elected. We are there to work on behalf of each and every constituent in this Province and not just in our districts, and if we have to take on somebody else to do it then we will do it. Our administration took them on before, the same political stripe and political strip opposite, both federally and provincially, and out of that came some positive results for the Province as a whole.

Mr. Chairman, the forestry industry in the Province is at an all time low.

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please!

The hon. Member's time has elapsed.

The hon. the Member for St. John's South.

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

It has been extremely interesting over the last couple of days and last night to hear hon. Members on both sides of the House debating this Interim Supply Bill in conjunction with funding that is needed to provide employment for Newfoundlanders throughout the Province. I find it extremely difficult, Mr. Chairman, to watch the constant, as my friend for Humber Valley said, the constant political rhetoric that goes on, but I suppose when one hon. member gets up and says something it beckons another hon. member to get up and respond. I guess that is the nature of debate. I think we have beaten this down pretty well. We have beaten it to death, as such. I do not think, for one minute, that the Member for Grand Bank, the hon. the Opposition House Leader, or any members in this House want to interfere with funding that is associated with providing the employment that is needed by so, so many Newfoundlanders.

You know, Mr. Chairman, the hon. the Member for Port de Grave talked about the Marystown deal. Well, an awful lot of things that were said in the last couple of days in this House of Assembly, whether you want to or you do not want to, you must associate them with the problems that this Government and other provincial governments are having with the Federal Government in Ottawa. I mean, you cannot lose $728 million in transfer payments and not have an impact in the Province of Newfoundland. You cannot have the horrendous amount of dollars required by this Government to service debts and what have you, and when you get into a circumstance where our fishery was such a disaster last summer, a total disaster, and through no fault really of anybody - the cold water and so forth and so on, the scientists tell us. The reality - and the Member for Humber Valley must know this - is that we can wait no longer to address our concerns for our fishery with those who control our fishery, namely the Federal Government. We have to do something. We all understand that, and I look forward to seeing a much more concerted effort in the next year in telling Ottawa that we can no longer put up with it.

Now, in my district, Mr. Chairman, again talking about what has taken place with the Minister of Development in Marystown, it is obviously a very positive step when we can at least see a possibility in the Marystown Shipyard and the Cow Head area, of 600 or 700 jobs in the next couple of years. That is positive when we have negatives going on in Labrador West where the steel industry is crumbling, where forest products and paper are obviously having some problems. All of these things are negatives and it is good to see a positive.

The Newfoundland Dockyard has been down there, historically, putting out fine quality work under archaic circumstances for years and years and years. I would love for hon. members to come down and look at the equipment that the competent tradesmen have to try and work with. It should be in a museum. It should be in the Smithsonian Institute, the drill presses and the rolling mills and the other equipment that is down there. We have begged and pleaded with our friends in Ottawa for them to come and at least do one or the other, change the face of the Newfoundland Dockyard. It only needs a paltry - I know it sounds like a lot of money - $20 million to put that yard, strategically where it is, in a very competitive position to get involved with some of the topside work that is going to take place on the GBS that is going to go offshore, and hopefully the other production platforms. To see that dockyard just crumble and fall to pieces is a shame, a pure shame. Mr. Crosbie, Marine Atlantic and the feds owe the workforce of that yard.

We hear the Member for Burin - Placentia West, day in and day out -now, the Minister over here, the creditable Minister of Development, has delivered for him, has delivered for the Member for Burin - Placentia West. He is going around smiling now since last Tuesday, beaming, cannot wait to get on the airplane and join me, cannot wait to get up to White Horse and tell me about how good all his constituents feel.

But you know, Mr. Chairman, again the Feds, just on UI alone - I mean it is a tragedy in this Town today when you look at three regional offices that were in the City that are all now - that anybody who has anything to do with CEIC or UIC has to go to Water Street, an extremely congested area, and line up like cattle to try and get some information from placement officers and to file UIC claims. Now is that what Newfoundland has become?

Mr. Valcourt, of course we remember that particular gentleman when he was Minister of Fisheries and what he did for this Province - absolutely nothing. Now he is the man who looks after the UIC office. What has he done to the students at Memorial University who for years and years had their own little UI office up there where they could go in and discuss their problems and what have you? In the spring of this year, Mr. Valcourt is shutting that down and forcing the students from the university to go down to the congestion of Water Street and try to get their problems solved. These are the shameful things that are going on.

Again we have to ask ourselves, Mr. Chairman, of the sincerity of the Tory Government in Ottawa. No jurisdiction over the Prairies, absolutely no jurisdiction over the Prairies whatsoever, but because the Prairies suffer the consequences of having a drought or whatever happened through no fault of their own, and so the farmers should be helped. I am not standing here saying that the farmers should not be helped, but I ask hon. Members is it fair that the Federal Tories turn around and subsidize the farmers where they have no jurisdiction as such, only on the finished product, to the tune of $800 million, then they turn around and the Atlantic region - we are like Lazarus at the table waiting for crumbs to fall down - and give us a paltry $38 million through the whole Atlantic region.

Mr. Chairman, as hon. Members we all know that cannot be rationalized; there is no way in the world to rationalize it. I would like to remind hon. Members opposite that it is not so long ago that the previous administration under the leadership of Mr. Peckford had a terrible time, and they took on the Federal Tories. Now if we say anything about the Federal Tories they scowl at us, but Mr. Peckford was raising his arms: They sold the shop!.. and he went on and on and on and on.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. MURPHY: And on and on. But I have asked the new Leader of the Opposition on two occasions now to tell us how he feels about the Federal administration in Ottawa and what decisions they are making that impact the Newfoundland people. Does he align himself with the Mulroney Government? Does he align himself with the Mulroney policies? Does he align himself?

AN HON. MEMBER: Jean Chretien!

MR. MURPHY: He has not answered. It is time for the Leader of the Opposition to stand up and talk about GST, and talk about Free Trade, and talk about the impact that certain Mulroney policies have brought down around the shoulders of this Province and the Atlantic region in general.

So, Mr. Chairman, it is time to stop this debating and getting up and down, and it is time for the Opposition to give the people of Newfoundland the funding required so we can get them to work next Monday or Tuesday. As little as it is, it is better than nothing, and that particular programme is the initiative of a very poor government; the initiative of the Minister of Social Services, the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, and the Premier himself recognizing the necessity and responding to the necessity. That is what it is, it is a government that cares; it is a government that is doing its best when you consider the yoke of financial burden that was thrown around this government and thrown around our necks. We came in here and opened the books, and they were the same colour as this party, extremely red - extremely red.

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please!

The hon. Member's time is up.

MR. MURPHY: Oh, I have only just started. I will be back.

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

MR. TOBIN: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I would like to -

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: What is that?

Okay, Mr. Chairman, I am prepared to give him leave to table the questions provided it does not come out of my ten minutes. Is that agreeable? Is that okay, Government House Leader, is that okay?


SOME HON. MEMBERS: (Inaudible).

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

MR. FLIGHT: I thank the hon. Member for deferring to me for a moment; it will only take a moment, Mr. Chairman, as the House will know, as you will know -

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please!

MR. FLIGHT: As the hon. House will know and as you will know yesterday I tabled a list of projects that the Department of Forestry and Agriculture had developed, Emergency Employment Projects, and the hon. Opposition had some difficulty with it as I had neglected to list the number of employees per project and the number of work weeks, so I instructed my staff yesterday to do just that and what they have done now is, taken each individual specific project, identified the number of work weeks that will be involved and the number of employees, and, Mr. Chairman, it gives me great pleasure to table this list, and I hope this satisfies the Opposition. I cannot sit without saying that this is the kind of information that I never would have expected to have gotten from the previous Government during my seventeen years in opposition.

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

MR. TOBIN: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, I would like to say that it is obvious somebody is showing the Minister of Forestry and Agriculture what to do because he does not know how to do it himself. When I look over there and see the Minister of Social Services and the Member for St. John's South sitting together, just after listening to the Member for St. John's South wondering whether or not we supported Mr. Mulroney, it was my colleague for Grand Bank who reminded me that it was the Minister of Social Services and the Member for St. John's South who were going to support Sheila Cobbs for the leadership of the Liberal Party and we wondered what changed their minds. I mean the Member for St. John's South made no secret of his wish to see Sheila Cobbs as the Leader of the Federal Liberal Party, he made no secret of that as did the Minister of Social Services; what changed their minds from the time they were telling us that they were going to support Sheila Copps for the Leadership?

AN HON. MEMBER: Copps, Copps!

SOME HON. MEMBERS: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: Mr. Chairman, I am still going to say Sheila Cobb.


MR. TOBIN: Yes, Sheila Cobb, Mr. Chairman, and I wonder why the Minister of Social Services - it was in the papers, he had his picture in the papers, he was going to be the co-ordinator for Sheila Cobb, in Newfoundland; or Sheila Copps, Mr. Chairman, I am sorry. What changed his mind from supporting Ms. Copps to go with Mr. Chretien? We have his picture in the papers supporting - Mr. Chairman, if I had been a Liberal, God forbid, I would probably have supported Ms. Copps as well because I think she would have been a lot better for the Liberal Party than Mr. Chretien, but when the Member for St. John's South gets up and wonders whom we are going to support, whether we support Mulroney or Joe Clark whatever the case may be, why does he not get up and tell us why he decided to change to Mr. Chretien from Ms. Copps, why does he not tell us? That is the question.

I would suspect that had something to do with more than that and had something to do with a promise that was made probably to somebody else if Chretien was elected, and they had a greater commitment to Mr. Chretien, to the person, than they had to either one or the other, that is the problem.

AN HON. MEMBER: Not true.

MR. TOBIN: Yes, Mr. Chairman, it is. I have to say, Mr. Chairman, that for thirteen days we have been asking questions as to the lists of jobs, and it did not take the Minister of Social Services very long before he had his list. It was a good job, a very thorough list despite the pork barrelling. The Minister of Social Services, who had the largest Department going, who had the largest Department of any of them could get that list and put it on the table of the House in detail. Yet the Minister of Forestry and Agriculture could not do it and he has been around Cabinet two and a half years in a little small Department, a very junior Department compared to what the Minister of Social Services has, yet he could not get his list tabled until I gave him leave a couple of minutes ago. I just had to give him leave to do it. The Minister of Employment did it first. There is one thing I have to say and that is when I looked at the list that the Minister of Social Services tabled this morning in terms of the unemployment statistics, or those people on social assistance, he tabled them from 1986 to 1992. The list was tabled from 1986 to 1992. Mr. Speaker, the least number of people on social assistance were during the two years I was Minister of Social Services because what we were doing was right. The highest time the case load has ever been is since this Minister became the Minister of Social Services. It got worse since he became Minister. The best time it was when I was Minister and the worst time is since my friend became Minister, the other side of Placentia Bay.

MR. EFFORD: You have to look at who was in between there.

MR. TOBIN: That is the key, yes, that is the key.

The Member for St. John's South asked me to talk about the Marystown Shipyard. Yes, Mr. Chairman, I will do it with delight. The Marystown Shipyard was operated by the Newfoundland Government for twenty-four years and the first time in twenty-four years that people were laid off is now. When the Peckford administration was in power we built supply vessels on spec, we built ferries, we build middle distance vessels, we put in place a $25 million subsidy, we constructed the first phase of Cow Head and the second phase of Cow Head. The people of Marystown were faced with a decision, do we want the Wells Administration or the Norwegians to look after their wellbeing and welfare? Who do we think is the best to look after the workforce of the Marystown Shipyard, the crowd that took it from 500 to thirty-five people, or the Norwegians? When you have to make a decision in this Province between Norwegians protecting your work culture or the Wells Government protecting your work culture the decision is easy, go for the Norwegians because this group over here, Mr. Chairman, have no commitment to rural Newfoundland, none whatsoever. The Minister of Education got up this morning, Mr. Chairman, and if I ever seen an educator in this Province, next to Dr. Kitchen, next to the Minister of Finance who twists and turns about defending and promoting the profession of which they are involved, and their Members, then it is the Minister of Education. It is obvious that the Minister of Education is not committed, he does not have the commitment to that Department and it is time that he started doing something. We saw a report come out last week from one of the labour people. Mr. Andrews did a report as to how this Government treated teacher assistants, and whether or not the truth was being told in this House last year. Mr. Chairman, it was obvious to everyone that what the Minister of Education and what the President of Treasury Board were saying last year was not true.

The President of Treasury Board did not tell the truth in this House last year regarding the way the teachers' assistants were being treated; nor did the Minister of Education. That is true, Mr. Chairman. They did not tell the truth, and the mediator said they did not tell the truth. What did the Minister of Education say when that happened? He still tried to squirm and squiggle, Mr. Chairman. He did not tell the truth in this Legislature; nor did the President of Treasury Board.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: Well, Mr. Andrews said it; the report said it. The report said it. I did not write the report, the mediator report. I did not write it, Mr. Chairman. No one on this side wrote it. Why can you not treat the teacher assistants fairly? Why do you always have to be playing little games with the union? Why, Mr. Chairman, why? That is the question that has to be answered. I think he lacks any commitment to education in this Province; any commitment, Mr. Chairman; any commitment to education in this Province.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: Mr. Chairman, listen to that - Mr. Nutri-System.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: Yes, after what you said to me last night, I will have that name on you forever.

Mr. Chairman, we have a serious problem in this Province, and most of it, not all of it, but most of it has been created by this Government. Most of it has been created by this Government. Now there are a few good Ministers, Mr. Chairman, give them credit, there are a few good Ministers. Yes, I will name one, the Minister of Social Services.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: Yes he is. He is a good Minister, and I can name two. I would be hard-pressed to name three; hard-pressed to name three, Mr. Chairman, but I can name two.

AN HON. MEMBER: How about Mines and Energy?

MR. TOBIN: He is a lot better than the other Member for St. John's, the fellow who never got in Cabinet. He is a lot better than the Member from his neighbouring district who never made it to Cabinet. Now, Mr. Chairman, if he does not make it this term he will never make it. If he does not make it this term, he will never make it.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: I have not smoked since 1985. I quit tobacco in 1985, unlike the Member for St. John's South, Mr. Chairman, still smoking. Oh, he is still smoking, blowing smoke in everybody's face, Mr. Chairman, and saturating their clothes with stifling smoke and all that. He is one of those fellows who does all that; does not respect the rights of the non-smokers. He is one of them, Mr. Chairman. The Minister of Social Services is not a lot better. He is alright since he gave up chewing tobacco, but he is not a lot better. But the fact of the matter is that there is an economic crisis in this Province. The Marystown Shipyard hopefully, Mr. Chairman, will be the success story of the century.

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please!

The hon. Member's time is up.

MR. TOBIN: Hopefully it will be the success story of the century, but I will get back to it at a later date.

Okay, go again Mr. Chairman.

MR. CHAIRMAN: Are you ready for the question?

MR. TOBIN: No, Mr. Chairman.

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

MR. TOBIN: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Mr. Chairman, I was saying that hopefully the Marystown Shipyard will lead the way in economic development in this Province. Apart from the fact that it was a real fire sale, apart from that fact, Mr. Chairman, that assets valued at $100+ million were sold for $20 million, apart from all of that, Mr. Chairman; apart from the fact that the Cow Head facility that is now under construction was $38 million; the Marystown Shipyard Synchrolift must be worth at least $50 million and they got it for $20 million. But let us put that aside for a minute. I personally know of no company that the Minister of Development could have attracted better to operate the Marystown Shipyard than the Kvaerner Rosenberg Group. I think that they were the best ones possible, and I think the Minister made the right choice in bringing them as the operators of the Marystown Shipyard. There is no doubt in my mind; no doubt in my mind.

Mr. Larsen, Mr. Chairman, a very credible individual, as a matter of fact it was this group here, when we were in Government, who brought the Rosenberg Group to the Province, headed by Mr. Whalen, who went out and did a lot of work on it and brought Mr. Larsen as part of it. It was this administration that brought the Norwegians to Newfoundland in conjunction with the Marystown Shipyard, formed the consortium named Vinland Industries, had the technology transfer put in place where the people were trained, and continued by the Minister of Development; I will give him credit for that.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: What was that?

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: Mr. Chairman, I was not the one looking for the security job in there though.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).


AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: I never said - why is the Minister so sensitive? I never said he was, Mr. Chairman. Why did he react like that? I never suggested that he was in there looking for any contracts. I do not know why he got so excited. Got on the defence so quick. But the fact of the matter is that Larsen -

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: No, I will not sit down. I have ten minutes. Larsen was the best group in this Province. The best group that you could bring to this Province was Kvaerner, and I give the Minister of Development full credit for that. I believe that if there is anyone who can make a go, other than government, of the Marystown operation it is that group of individuals. Now I just finished doing an interview on the Marystown Shipyard. We talked about the debt load that was there. Let's just talk about it for a minute, Mr. Chairman.

Can somebody tell me which shipbuilding industry in this country that is not subsidized? For example - none, right. Just a few weeks ago the Nova Scotian government had to pump millions into the operation for them to get a job to build these mine sweepers. There is nobody who knows how much Federal money, let alone provincial money, has been pumped into that frigate programme in New Brunswick. Because that is one disaster. The further they get behind the more money is thrown at it, because the cost of the material and everything goes up, but it is still the Federal Government putting money in.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: Well, I do not know what they call it, but the thing is, there is Federal money that is going in there that is not going in around here.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: Okay, it should be looked at too. The Quebec yards for years have received millions from the Quebec government and the Federal Government. Mr. Chairman, look at the yards in Great Britain. There are some over there that have a subsidy programme up to $50 million. So the debt load of the Marystown Shipyard is not much greater - as a matter of fact I would suspect that if one was to look at the debt load of the Marystown Shipyard accumulated over twenty-four years, it was probably less in the Marystown Shipyard than any other place.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: Mr. Chairman, I would not expect the Minister of Forestry to know what I am talking about because he does not know his own Department. Why would he know anything about shipbuilding?

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: The debt load - I tell you, I will ask for leave if he keeps that up. The debt load of the Marystown - I continue to get up - Shipyard is no greater than the debt load at any other shipyard in this country. There are thirty-five unionized people as of next Friday who will be working at the Marystown Shipyard. As a matter of fact I understand that after today there will not be a ship at the Yard. There are thirty-five unionized people left at the Marystown Shipyard. That is down from over 500 when government changed two and a half years ago. It is the lack of any commitment by this Government to the facility.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: Now the Member for Placentia, the Minister of Social Services, knows full well - I just heard what he said - that if it had not been for the actions of this Government and Mobil Oil there would be a major offshore development taking place in Argentia today, as well as in Mortier Bay. I do not say it to be parochial or anything else. But if the construction had to stay and remain in Placentia Bay where it was supposed to be, where it was designated to be, if that had to happen there would be people working today on a site in Argentia, and the Minister of Social Services knows what I am saying is true.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: Mobil Oil! Mr. Chairman, there would be people working today in Placentia. Because Argentia was designated as a site. Last week I heard the Minister of Development on the radio saying basically that Argentia, they are going to catalogue it, so that people will realise that it has the potential for future development, and all that. Good stuff. But Argentia was designated as the site for the assembly of the topsides, under the previous administration, and the Minister of Social Services knows what I am saying is true.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible) changed in 1987.

MR. TOBIN: Mr. Chairman, it did not change in 1987, it changed after this crowd came to power. Argentia, today, would have people working at the Hibernia development project had it not been for this Government and Mobil Oil. There is no doubt about that.

AN HON. MEMBER: Bull Arm (inaudible) like that.

MR. TOBIN: I am not saying anything about Bull Arm or any place else, all I am saying is that the Minister of Social Services stood by and let that happen. That is what has taken place in this Province.

AN HON. MEMBER: Your time is up.

MR. TOBIN: No, it is not up, Mr. Chairman.

I can continue, and I just might continue until this afternoon. I just might continue to debate this issue. If the Minister of Development keeps telling me to sit down I just might continue this debate.

MR. MATTHEWS: If you are provoked, you will.

MR. TOBIN: That's right, if I am provoked any further, Mr. Chairman, because I have been known to be a person that can be pretty independent at times, and get stubborn.


MR. TOBIN: If the Leader asks me to do something, I will do it, no doubt about that. But I would not put my picture in the paper supporting one candidate for the leadership of the Liberal Party nationally, and when the Premier came to me and said something, tear up the paper and say I am not supporting her. I would not do that like the hon. member. No one would put me on that kind of a string, Mr. Chairman.

MR. SIMMS: You wouldn't jump out the eighth floor window for the Premier.

MR. TOBIN: No one would put me on that kind of a string, where I would have to phone her and say, I am sorry, I have to support Mr. Chretien.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. TOBIN: Why would you not support her? Your picture was in the paper.

MR. MATTHEWS: Did you hear what he said? He said he would jump out the eighth floor window for the Premier.

MR. TOBIN: Yes, that is what he said in the House last session. Well, there is a good chance if he jumped from the eighth floor of this building, he might not even get injured. There is a good possibility, if he landed in the right place he would not receive any injuries, I am sure of that, Mr. Chairman.

AN HON. MEMBER: Time is up.

MR. TOBIN: Could I have leave, Mr. Chairman. I have more to say.

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please!

The hon. Member's time has elapsed.

Are we ready for the question?

MR. TOBIN: No, Mr. Chairman, I am not ready for the question.

MR. CHAIRMAN: Are we ready for the question?


"That it is expedient to introduce a measure to provide for the granting to Her Majesty for defraying certain expenses of the public service for the financial year ending March 31, 1992, the sum of $8,725,000."

Motion that the Committee report having passed a resolution and a bill consequent thereto, carried.

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

MR. SPEAKER (Simms): The hon. the Member for Trinity - Bay de Verde.

MR. L. SNOW: Mr. Speaker, the Committee of the Whole on Supply have considered the matters to them referred, have directed me to report that it has adopted a certain resolution and asked that a bill be introduced to reflect the same.

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

On motion, a bill, "An Act For Granting To Her Majesty Certain Sums Of Money For Defraying Certain Additional Expenses Of The Public Service For The Financial Year Ending March 31, 1992 And For Other Purposes Relating To The Public Service," read a first, second and third time, ordered passed and its title be as on the Order Paper. (Bill No. 44)

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

MR. BAKER: Order 4.

Motion, second reading of a bill, "An Act To Amend The City Of Corner Brook Act, 1985, The City Of Mount Pearl Act And The Municipalities Act". (Bill No. 11).

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

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

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

First of all, let me say what a privilege this is. I have never had the experience of being in the House when Your Honour was in the Chair, and I am now very happy to have had that opportunity.

This particular bill, Mr. Speaker, is fairly simple. It is to give a little more authority to the City of Corner Brook, the City of Mount Pearl, and the municipalities under the Municipalities Act. The City of St. John's already has those powers. It is simply: "In addition to the existing legal remedies available to a council, the amendments would specifically empower a council to seek an injunction or other declaratory relief to enforce stop and remove orders with respect to buildings and property." So it allows them to more effectively control development within their municipality, Mr. Speaker. I am very pleased to introduce second reading.

MR. SPEAKER (Lush): We are waiting for the Member for Humber Valley to get himself in readiness, if that is okay with hon. members.

The hon. the Member for Humber Valley.

MR. WOODFORD: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

I am sorry about that, Mr. Speaker. I thank hon. members for giving me a chance to have a peek at the bill.

This is, if I recollect properly, a minor amendment to all three acts: The City of Corner Brook Act -

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. WOODFORD: Yes, primarily to buildings and so on. It is just that it is a different section of each act, that is the only difference. I have read this over before. Now,it is starting to come back to me, and I do not see anything there that would change from the previous one except for the legal procedure in dealing with anybody who has not been issued a permit and continued on with the building, and the council had the right to go in and tear that down. I will not go through it in detail, Mr. Speaker. That is about all I have to say on it.

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

If the hon. the minister speaks now, he closes the debate.

MR. BAKER: Mr. Speaker, I move second reading.

On motion, a bill, " An Act To Amend The City Of Corner Brook Act, 1985, The City Of Mount Pearl Act And The Municipalities Act," read a second time, ordered referred to a Committee of the Whole House presently by leave. (Bill No. 11).

MR. BAKER: Order 9, Mr. Speaker.

Motion, second reading of a bill, " An Act To Amend The Intergovernmental Affairs Act, 1975'. (Bill No. 28).

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

MR. BAKER: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This is one of the acts related to some changes that were made two-and-a-half years ago. There was a series of them, I remember, that came through the House, and this is one that has been on the Order Paper and did not get dealt with. It deals with Intergovernmental Affairs.

There was an Intergovernmental Affairs Ministry, which has since been eliminated and the Premier is handling the Intergovernmental Affairs business. So he is Premier, as well as being responsible for Intergovernmental Affairs. It makes that change. Also, there is one other. There is now no Deputy Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, but there is an equivalent position of Secretary to Cabinet for Intergovernmental Affairs. So it makes those two changes, Mr. Speaker.

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

MR. SIMMS: Yes, Mr. Speaker, this is pretty straight forward. We could debate, I suppose, forever and a day, the value of it, but there is no real difficulty with it. Obviously, if there is not, now, a Department of Intergovernmental Affairs, and if it is not reporting to a minister, you have to make the appropriate legislative change, that is all that does. And if there is no department, as such, then there is obviously no deputy minister, as such. So it is pretty hard to argue with wanting to eliminate that position. To create the position of Secretary of the Cabinet is one that could provoke a bit of debate, I guess, if one were so inclined but, really, there is a Secretariat now, as I understand it, is there? There is still an Intergovernmental Affairs Secretariat. So the position now, instead of Deputy Minister, will be simply, Secretariat.

There is no real problem with it, I guess, Mr. Speaker. There is no time to debate it today.

MR. SPEAKER: The President of Treasury Board. If the hon. the minister speaks now, he closes the debate.

MR. BAKER: Yes, Mr. Speaker, the Leader of the Opposition is quite right, there is an IGA Secretariat reporting to the Premier and Cabinet, as well. But there is still a need for people to do analysis, especially of things having to do with land claims, and things having to do with Constitution, and things having to do with other cost-shared agreements and all this kind of stuff. So there is still need for the analysts. So they exist.

So I move second reading of Bill 28, Mr. Speaker.

On motion, a bill, "An Act To Amend The Intergovernmental Affairs Act, 1975," read a second time, ordered referred to a Committee of the Whole House presently, by leave. (Bill No. 28).

MR. BAKER: Order number 17, Mr. Speaker.

Motion, second reading of a bill, "An Act To Amend The Newfoundland Geographical Names Board Act, 1974,". (Bill No. 43).

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

MR. FUREY: Mr. Speaker, I am acting on behalf of the Minister of Environment and Lands for this piece of legislation. It is a pretty straightforward bill. All it is, if Members will refer to the explanatory note, is a very straight change of name. It is a very simple housekeeping change of name.

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

MR. WARREN: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. We see nothing wrong with this Bill. In fact, it just changes the name from Newfoundland Geographical Names Board to the Newfoundland and Labrador Geographical Names Board. So actually, Mr. Speaker, just recognising that Labrador is part of this Province. Subsequently, we see nothing wrong with this Bill.

I just want to say one thing. That one member on this Board, Dr. Gordon Hancock, I must say is a real good person who is very knowledgeable about the geography of Newfoundland. In fact it is only just the past two or three years, since Dr. Hancock has been on this Board, that he has made it a point, when we are talking about name changes or selections of names in particular, on the north coast of Labrador where we have the long Inuit or Indian names, I have had many conversations with Dr. Hancock concerning the islands of (inaudible) and some other names up there. The members on the Board would want some input, and I must say I get along with the Board very well.

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

MR. SIMMS: Yes, Mr. Speaker, just a brief comment on this board, because when I was Minister of Forestry and Lands, I think I can say modestly - I say it modestly, anyway - one of the things I wanted to do was try to activate the committee, the Geographical Names Board, that had been in existence for about twenty-odd years, and no reflection on the personalities on the committee or anything else, but they really did not get out around very much, and there was not much interest created in the preservation of some of the historical names of Newfoundland communities, sites and the rest of it. So we got the committee activated a bit, and we encouraged the committee in fact, and the present Minister of Forestry and acting Minister of Lands is probably familiar with it, but we got the committee to take an active interest around the Province. In fact, Members Opposite and Members on this side will recall some of the things that have happened in terms of name changes. Out in the district of Twillingate, for example, the historic district of Twillingate; the Minister of Fisheries would be aware of some of the name changes of some of the communities. I am trying to think off the top of my head. Whale's Gulch was a well known community out in that area, and now it has been changed. What is it called? Valley Pond, and there were changes like this, and it provoked a bit of interest. In fact, for the first time -

AN HON. MEMBER: Gay Side (inaudible).

MR. SIMMS: Gay Side was another one, that is right. As a result of all of that activity of the Geographical Names Board - that is where a lot of that came from - the radio stations, CBC in particular, CBC Radio carried a whole number of programmes on it and sort of reactivated the interest, I suppose, of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians in a lot of the name places in Newfoundland and Labrador. So one of the things that Board can do, I think, is create that kind of interest. I think it is important, and they also have made decisions, by the way, to preserve names that were in existence, even though there were groups looking to change names and so on, so they play a valuable role, as insignificant as the Geographical Names Board may sound to most people. I just wanted to make that comment.

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

If the Minister speaks now, he closes the debate.

MR. FUREY: I thank the Members for their comments, and I apologize to my colleague, the Acting Minister of Environment and Lands. I was told he would not be here for the last fifteen minutes, so I move second reading on Bill 43.

On motion, a bill, "An Act To Amend The Newfoundland Geographical Names Board Act, 1974" read a second time, ordered referred to a Committee of the Whole House presently by leave. (Bill No. 43).

MR. BAKER: The next order, Mr. Speaker, is by leave, the committee stage of Bill No. 11.

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

MR. CHAIRMAN: Order, please!

A bill, "An Act To Amend The City Of Corner Brook Act, 1985, The City Of Mount Pearl Act And The Municipalities Act." (Bill No. 11).

A bill, "An Act To Amend The Intergovernmental Affairs Act, 1975." (Bill No. 28).

A bill, "An Act To Amend The Newfoundland Geographical Names Board Act, 1974." (Bill No. 43).

Motion, that the Committee report having passed the bills without amendment, carried.

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

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

The hon. the Member for Trinity - Bay de Verde.

MR. L. SNOW: Mr. Speaker, the Committee of the Whole have considered the matters to them referred, have directed me to report bills 11, 28 and 43 without amendment and ask leave to sit again.

On motion, report received and adopted, Committee ordered to sit again on tomorrow.

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

MR. BAKER: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. It is my intention next week to call a variety of bills. These bills will be chosen, I guess, during the next few days and in conversations between myself and the Opposition House Leader, Members will be informed as to which bills will be called, and there are quite a number of bills that we are considering dealing with next week.

I would like to remind Members of the House that Monday is a holiday, so the House will not be sitting on Monday so that the next occasion when we sit will be on Tuesday, the 12th of November.

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