May 31, 1993              HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY PROCEEDINGS                  Vol. XLII  No. 7

The House met at 2:00 p.m.

MR. SPEAKER (Dicks): Order, please!

On behalf of all hon. members I would like to welcome to the House of Assembly the new MHA for Placentia, Mr. Nicholas Careen.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: And also on behalf of hon. members I would like to welcome to the public galleries forty-five grade seven students from Dunne Memorial Academy, St. Mary's, accompanied by their teachers, Mrs. Gibbons and Mrs. St. Croix.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: Finally, and by no means least, I would also like to welcome students from Greenwood Elementary School in Burlington, Baie Verte, White Bay District accompanied by their parents and two teachers, Archibald Antle and Garland Morris.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

Oral Questions

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

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. CAREEN: Mr. Speaker, I would like to address this question to the Minister of Environment and Lands please. A couple of months ago the owner of the former phosphorous plant in Long Harbour submitted a preliminary plan, a risk analysis I believe they call it, for the cleanup or the containment of hazardous waste at the plant site in Long Harbour. Has government approved the risk assessment by Albright and Wilson and have you given approval for the company to proceed with detailed planning for the cleanup?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Environment and Lands.

MS. COWAN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker, I commend the new member for jumping into the fray right off the bat.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MS. COWAN: We in the department have had a look at the plant for containment at the site, it is certainly not our first choice and we have let them know that it is not our first choice and that we will be asking them to explore other methods of dealing with the phosphorous. However, at the same time we are looking at their proposal for containment because we do not have any other option. Since they have presented it to us we must have a look at it however it is not our preferred option, we have let the company know that and we will be asking them to submit other options that are more in keeping with what the original proposal from the government was in 1982, that is to return the site to its actual former state.

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

MR. CAREEN: Mr. Speaker, did Albright and Wilson propose, as its preferred option, to contain the waste in some kind of storage rather than remove it from the site altogether?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Environment and Lands.

MS. COWAN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Yes, they did see it as the least costly for them. However, that is not a concern of ours. We see it as, we want the safest, possible environment for our people in that area therefore we will be asking them for other submissions as well so that we could look at a variety of options before we give them any sort of go-ahead.

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

MR. SULLIVAN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

In the Late Show, here in the House on Thursday, the Minister of Health stated that the former Conservative government had overbuilt hospitals in this Province, and he singled out hospitals in Grand Falls and in Port aux Basques. I ask the minister, has he targeted those hospitals for major new cuts in services or even for closure?

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

DR. KITCHEN: No, Mr. Speaker.

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

MR. SULLIVAN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

How does the minister square that statement with the statements made a couple of weeks ago by the administrator of St. Clare's Hospital in St. John's. She stated that the St. John's hospitals were under pressure, because patients are now being sent to St. John's for surgery and other specialist procedures which are no longer available in hospitals which served their home regions. I ask the minister: is that not the real reason for overcapacity in hospitals outside St. John's?

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

DR. KITCHEN: No. Mr. Speaker.

The two are not related.

MR. SPEAKER: A final supplementary. The hon. the Member for Ferryland.

MR. SULLIVAN: I guess the minister is using the same strategy that CN used to get rid of trains. They gradually shut down services until people got used to it, and then they took away our railroads. Isn't that the strategy with this government of hospitals outside St. John's, to take away services until people get used to it and centralize all services in St. John's except the most basic services?

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

DR. KITCHEN: Mr. Speaker, the first part of his comment comparing me with John Crosbie is something that I take great exception to, I have no desire to be compared to the hon. John Crosbie.

As far as the second part of his question is concerned: no, we have no plans to centralize health services entirely in the City of St. John's.

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

MR. E. BYRNE: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

My question is for the Minister of Education.

Has Memorial University shown the minister a schedule of proposed tuition increases for the next academic year or upcoming academic year?

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

MR. DECKER: No, Mr. Speaker, and that does not surprise me because no schedule exists yet.

MR. SPEAKER: A supplementary. The hon. the Member for Kilbride.

MR. E. BYRNE: Will the Minister of Education confirm that the University proposes to hike basic degrees in science and arts by 15.2 per cent? Will he confirm that the tuition costs for professional schools and professional degrees, proposed hike increase, is 32.9 per cent? Will he confirm that the proposed increase for med school students will be increased by 47 per cent in tuition costs this year?

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

MR. DECKER: Mr. Speaker, it's difficult to confirm the precise figures that the hon. member puts forward. I can tell the hon. member though that among the cost-saving measures that the University is dealing with, one of their suggestions is that they will, instead of raising tuition at a set rate right across the board, they are indeed looking at raising it at a higher percentage to certain of the professional schools, for example, the med school, or whatever, Mr. Speaker. I can't confirm or deny that it's 15.2 per cent or forty-seven point something per cent. But I can confirm that the University is considering an increase which will not be the same for all students.

MR. SPEAKER: Final supplementary, the hon. the Member for Kilbride.

MR. E. BYRNE: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. In the student newspaper The Muse, on Friday past, those proposed increases in tuition costs were outlined in the front-page headline. Is the minister concerned about the size of the increase that I've just outlined? Will he intervene to curtail rising tuition costs so that a university education is accessible to all young people in this Province, and not just to those who readily can afford to go there?

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

MR. DECKER: Mr. Speaker, of course I think any human being is concerned when the cost of anything, especially education, increases in this Province. However, I have no intention of intervening at this time. It is an established policy across the free world that governments do not intervene specifically in the cases of universities, in the way they handle their affairs. If we were to intervene, Mr. Speaker, then it would mean we would have to find more money to offset what the University would lose. With the fiscal realities that we live with, government is unable to do that at this time.

I certainly will continue to talk with the University on these matters, but we have no intention of intervening at this time, Mr. Speaker, unless the University does something that we consider to be totally out of whack, and if that were the case we would have to intervene but there would be a cost of intervening.

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

MR. MANNING: Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Tourism and Culture.

Approximately three years ago six development associations on the Southern Avalon made a joint proposal to government for a tourism development study. They were told at that time that they would not be funded because government was undertaking a tourism development study for the entire Avalon region. I would like to ask the minister: When does he anticipate the study will be available to municipalities, development associations and other groups and organizations interested in the development of tourism in these areas?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Tourism and Culture.

MR. WALSH: Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and I thank the hon. member for his question.

The Avalon region study is the last in a group of studies that are to be carried out in Newfoundland in the various regions, and it was felt that we should study the entire region rather than simply specific areas. That study is now about to get under way and actually has started in terms of terms of reference being laid out, and I would like to think that all of the towns and municipalities, and indeed various interest groups, will participate in the study. I can assure the member that a series of meetings will be held throughout the region to ensure that all of those with an interest will have an opportunity to have input into that tourism study.

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

MR. MANNING: Mr. Speaker, municipalities, development associations and other interested parties on the Southern Avalon at least have been kept in the dark on this study. It has been about a year ago now since we received correspondence that the study would be going ahead. Many are not even aware that this study is under way.

Will the minister tell this hon. House how the study or the terms of reference are being done and who is doing it? And why have local organizations - many local organizations - been completely ignored?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Tourism and Culture.

MR. WALSH: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

With reference to the actual study, the original plan was to do simply a specific area, that area being mostly metropolitan St. John's. The department felt that was not broad enough and that we should look at promoting regions in all cases throughout the Province, as we have done with the Viking Trail. That is an entire region all the way up to and including St. Anthony, as well as including parts of the Labrador Straits.

So it is our intention, and what our intention was, to make sure that we expanded the role. The actual terms of reference and those involved I will have to take under advisement and I will get that information to the member as quickly as possible.

MR. SPEAKER: A final supplementary, the hon. the Member for St. Mary's - The Capes.

MR. MANNING: A final supplementary, Mr. Speaker.

Rural Newfoundland began this process and they became involved to be a whole region. The minister is aware that communities on the Southern Avalon are relying heavily on tourism development to replace investments and jobs lost in the fishery. Every time they make a proposal to government they are told to wait for this comprehensive Avalon study. I would like to ask the minister if he could give us a time limit as to when the study will be underway or is it just an excuse to put people off and avoid making decisions?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Tourism and Culture.

MR. WALSH: Mr. Speaker, I can assure the hon. member, who is a new member to this House, that we will certainly complete the study a lot faster than it took in terms of seventeen years to complete the other studies. It is important that we reach out into every region of the Province to make sure it is done properly. It is very easy for us to either single out a community, or single out an organization, but if they do not fit totally into what the final results of the study are it is simply throwing money away. We have seen enough of that over the last seventeen years and we do not intent to continue with it.

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

MR. E. BYRNE: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

My question is for the Premier. The Minister of Education just indicated that the only time he would intervene, or government would intervene, into a situation at the University was if something was out of whack at the University. I would suggest that in the past four years tuition costs for students in a general arts program has increased by 60 per cent, in the professional schools it has increased by 100 per cent, and in the medical school it has increased by 115 per cent. I would suggest that this government intervene now because if anything was out of whack that is certainly out of whack, and I want to know if the Premier would intervene into the situation that is taking place at the University right now?

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

MR. DECKER: Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is making some sweeping statements and really, with all respect, I do not think he really knows what he is talking about.


MR. DECKER: To begin with I told him I cannot confirm or deny the statements he made about the 15.2 per cent and all this sort of thing, however, I have had quite a few talks with the University over the past number of months, as you would expect, and I suspect there will be an increase in tuition this year. Now, whether that is going to be 47 per cent or 35 per cent I do not know because I am not even sure it has been through the senate, Mr. Speaker. It is being discussed. I have to tell hon. members the reality is we have to pay the cost of operating the University. There are a whole lot of things the administration could do. They could lay off some professors, they could roll back wages, or they can deal with the pension fund. They are similar to government, they have to deal with the thing, but hon. members must also realize that notwithstanding the increases that the hon. member talks about - and they are open for debate - notwithstanding the increases, the perceived increases, some of them are real, we do have the cheapest university education in all of Canada.

MR. SULLIVAN: And the lowest standards.

MR. DECKER: The hon. member says "the lowest standards". That is an absolute total insult, and the hon. member should be breaking his neck to get on his feet and apologize for what is indeed -

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. DECKER: As the last report showed, it is one of the top universities in the world, Mr. Speaker. The hon. member should apologise to the people who are running that University.

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

MR. E. BYRNE: My question is for the Minister of Education. The proposed tuition increases that I have proposed or are at the table before you today are not open for debate. They are proposed changes. On June 11 the final decision will be made at the Board of Regents. The minister in my opinion must intervene. You talk about the lowest cost of university education in this Province. I would like to also remind the minister that we are, in this Province today, we have the hardest hit economy, and that accessibility to education is becoming extremely hard for students to get into university because of the tuition fees. What I'd like the minister to do is to confirm that he will talk to University officials and intervene to see what can be done on behalf of students at Memorial University for the upcoming academic year.

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

MR. DECKER: Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is already changing his tune. In his first line of questions this was all a fait accompli, done. He even gave me the announcement and all this. Now he's saying it's a proposal. That's exactly what I told him when I answered the question. That the University is considering a whole list of options. It all has to be approved by the Senate. I don't want to prejudge what the Senate's going to do.

The hon. member talks about accessibility. The reality is that we have a higher percentage of our students in university than any other province in Canada save Prince Edward Island. The highest in Canada. In excess of 40 per cent of the students who completed Grade XII in the past three years are attending university in this Province or outside. We have the second-highest in all of Canada, Mr. Speaker. Thirty-five per cent of our people are in university. By comparison, in British Columbia about 8 per cent of their students who completed high school in the last three years are in university. We have the second-highest in all of Canada, Mr. Speaker. So I don't know what he's talking about accessibility. I wouldn't want to see it much better than that.

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

MR. W. MATTHEWS: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. I have a question for the Minister of Fisheries. I want to ask the minister what government is doing about restructuring the processing sector of the fishery, which of course we all know is completely within the jurisdiction of the Province. Last week the federal minister made a statement to the editorial board of The Evening Telegram, indicating that he had asked the Province for a plan because he was willing to seek federal financial assistance to deal with the restructuring of the processing sector. Can the minister inform the House when he will have a plan ready from the Province to present to the federal government for financial support?

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

MR. CARTER: Mr. Speaker, beginning tomorrow night we're starting our meetings with respect to the recently released discussion paper on the fishery. That of course will be one of the things that will be addressed in the course of those meetings. Following that process, the government will be presenting to the House and to the people of this Province a White Paper in which we will then outline our thinking with respect to the fisheries of the future.

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

MR. W. MATTHEWS: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. The minister is on record as saying several times that the fishery of the future is certainly going to be different and there has to be restructuring of the processing sector. In fact he's said that he's willing to let the market forces dictate what plants remain open in this Province and what close. It's quite conceivable, I say to the minister, that within twelve months the moratorium could end. None of us expect it, but it's very possible. Then of course the decision has to be made whether to re-open the fishery or extend, hopefully, the moratorium benefits. In either case, a plan to restructure the processing sector is critical. I want to ask the minister: if the moratorium is extended, as many say it will be, will fish plant workers conceivably have their benefits terminated because the Province and the Minister of Fisheries have not put forward a plan for the processing sector?

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

MR. CARTER: Mr. Speaker, the problems that we're now experiencing in the fishing industry in Newfoundland are the responsibility of the federal government. They've recognized their responsibility by initiating the so-called moratorium package, and one would expect that at the end of the package period - whenever - June of 1994, if the stocks have not rebuilt to the point where Total Allowable Catch can be established then I would expect them to extend the moratorium package. That is something, of course, over which the Province does not have any control whatsoever. The government will make that decision, Mr. Crosbie will, if he is still minister then, which is highly unlikely of course, will make that decision and we will have to wait and see what happens.

MR. TOBIN: You will not be minister then.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

A final supplementary for the Opposition House Leader.

MR. W. MATTHEWS: That may be more detrimental to the Province than the minister thinks, if Mr. Crosbie is not Minister of Fisheries, I say to him; but having said that, Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Fisheries knows full-well that the processing sector of the fishery is completely within the Province's jurisdiction. It makes me wonder, when I listen to the comments that have been made by Mr. Crosbie, if perhaps there is not some concern there that if the Province does not get off its duff very quickly and present a plan for the processing sector, that conceivably fish plant workers may be left out in the cold when a new compensation package is put in place for the fishery.

My question to the minister is: Is he prepared to put the survival and income of 10,000 or 15,000 plant workers at risk because he and his colleagues have completely failed to do their homework? Will there be a plan in place the next few months so that if the federal government has to make a further decision on extending moratorium benefits that there will be a plan there for the processing sector that includes fish plant workers in this Province? That is the question to the minister.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

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

MR. CARTER: Mr. Speaker, I can appreciate how concerned the hon. gentleman must be when he realizes the Province does not just drop everything and respond to a demand from Mr. Crosbie that we produce a plan. I can name in many cases where the minister himself has been delinquent in producing certain information that we need, but again these are hypothetical questions. The fact of the matter is that if the fish stocks are not rebuilt to the point where we can sustain a fishery then I would expect the federal government to continue with their moratorium package and the Province, for our part will, in due course, announce what our thinking is, in the form of a White Paper. We shall follow the process that we are about to start now with respect to our discussion paper.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

The hon. the Member for Bonavista South.

MR. FITZGERALD: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

My question is to the Minister of Tourism and Culture. Will the minister advise the House if there will be any change this Summer in the length of time provincial historic sites around the Province will be open to the public?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Tourism and Culture.

MR. WALSH: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Last Summer we entered into a pilot project of keeping a number of historic sites open through to Thanksgiving weekend, and it is our intention to look to do exactly the same this year - possibly not with as many.

For the hon. member's position, we were very keen on keeping the historic sites in Bonavista open because it happens to be a major attraction during that Fall season - what we call 'a shoulder season' - and it is our intention to look to do the same thing again this year in his particular area.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Bonavista South.

MR. FITZGERALD: Mr. Speaker, at least some development associations understand that the sites will be only open for ten weeks, so there will not be a situation where they are open late in the season and extended beyond the Labour Day weekend.

I have been told by the staff in the minister's office as well that this Summer staff at the historic sites will be hired for only ten weeks or less. How does the Tourism Minister justify that with the government's stated commitment to tourism and development as a means of generating economic activity and employment in the Province?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Tourism and Culture.

MR. WALSH: Mr. Speaker, I justify it this year the same way we justified it last year. We put in place a budget that would keep the facilities open for a given period of time. I have said to the member that we are very concerned in particular of his particular region because we understand that there are a number of bus tours that come through, in particular during the months of September and October, and our department is looking at ways of maintaining those particular sites into and including Thanksgiving weekend.

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

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

Anyone who heard the minister - I guess it was last Wednesday - and the Premier on Friday, are convinced that the government is actively pursuing a course, or proposal, or plan, to sell off Newfoundland Hydro.

Mr. Speaker, last August I guess, which is eight or nine months ago, the minister said that government had studied the matter and decided the privatization of Hydro would be of no benefit to the Province. Let me ask the minister, what has happened since August to have changed government's mind, if privatization was of no benefit nine months ago, could he tell us of what benefit it is to the Province today and what has changed?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: Mr. Speaker, the government has indicated its general policy on privatization. Not alone in respect to Hydro but in respect to a variety of government agencies, and the government is taking a look at it and will make a determination as to whether or not it is appropriate to propose or consider privatization in respect of any particular Crown agency. We will not be making any speculative comments on whether or not it is going to be considered or whether or not it should be considered in any particular instance until we are ready to make a proposal for discussion. I assure the House, that any proposal for privatization will be given adequate public notice to allow full and complete discussion.

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

MR. TOBIN: Mr. Speaker, I would just like once again, to remind the Premier that the minister said in August that they had studied it and the sale was of no benefit to the Province. I will ask the Premier then, is he looking at the sale of all of Hydro's assets including the Upper and Lower Churchill, or is government only looking to sell off Hydro's power generation and distribution assets and operations on the Island?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: Mr. Speaker, the answer that I gave the House on Friday and I believe on Thursday, and that I just gave the House now, remains the same. There is no variation on it no matter how the question is asked.

MR. SPEAKER: A final supplementary. The hon. the Member for Burin - Placentia West.

MR. TOBIN: Mr. Speaker, let me ask the Premier a direct question and I would like him to answer the direct question.

Is he prepared to include the Upper and Lower Churchill in the sale of Newfoundland Hydro? Is he prepared to include both of them in the sale?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WELLS: Mr. Speaker, the answer to the question remains exactly as it was two days ago, one day ago and earlier today.

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

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

I have a question for the Minister of Health.

Mr. Speaker, I am wondering if the Minister of Health can inform the House whether or not he is aware, or has he has been advised of layoffs with the Burin Regional Health Care Board, and if so, what the magnitude of those layoffs might be?

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

DR. KITCHEN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

I will have to ask the hon. member to repeat his question. I was not paying attention.

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

MR. W. MATTHEWS: I will repeat the question, Mr. Speaker.

I want to ask the Minister of Health, is he aware of any layoffs by the Burin Regional Health Care Board, and if so, could he advise the House of the magnitude of the layoffs?

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

DR. KITCHEN: Mr. Speaker, the Burin Health Care Board submitted a plan which was agreed on by the Department of Health, and subsequently there were some questions on the Burin Peninsula as to whether the plan was appropriate. I am not sure whether the board has submitted an alternate plan or not, but I will check it out and see just where that stands and let the hon. member and the House know.

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

MR. W. MATTHEWS: A supplementary, Mr. Speaker.

I am wondering, while the minister is doing it, would he take the time or have his officials check out - there are layoffs, Mr. Speaker, I tell the minister - the impact on lab. and x-ray services at the Grand Bank Health Care Centre, there were layoffs at that Centre as well as at Blue Crest Interfaith Senior Citizens Home just this last week, and I am wondering if the minister would undertake as well, to have a study done or have someone look into the impact particularly on lab and x-ray services that will certainly be diminished for residents who use the Grand Bank Health Care Centre, would he make that undertaking?

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

DR. KITCHEN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Yes, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: A final supplementary. The hon. the Opposition House Leader.

MR. W. MATTHEWS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

I am wondering, Mr. Speaker, but I think I know what the minister is going to find once he gets word back, but there is very serious concern in the area, particularly from Lamaline through to Grand Bank, about services now being diminished at that health care centre, so I am wondering when the minister gets the news back, I just want to ask him for the record: is there any possibility that funding could be - because apparently all this activity is taking place because of a cutback in the board's budget from government -is there any possibility that the minister could look at reinstating some funding to allow those very important lab and x-ray services to be continued to be offered for those people?

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

DR. KITCHEN: Mr. Speaker, it is very unlikely that we can take money from some other part of the health care system to divert to an area of the Province which, by comparison with others, is extremely well serviced.

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

MR. SULLIVAN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

I would like to direct a question to the Minister of Tourism and Culture.

I ask the minister, would he inform the House if the number of students and the number of weeks worked by students in provincial parks this year is going to be reduced over last year?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Tourism and Culture

MR. WALSH: Mr. Speaker, in fact the number of students employed in parks this summer will be somewhat less than they were last year. In fact, the budget for the hiring of students in our entire summer program is down from some 200 and a little last year to approximately 175 students. So it might be, in the entire Tourism Department including the ferry service, the parks, our wildlife division, our tourist chalets, there may be a reduction of some thirty to forty positions this year.

MR. SPEAKER: Question period has expired.

The hon. the Minister of Tourism and Culture.

MR. WALSH: Mr. Speaker, I would like to ask leave of the House to revert to Ministerial Statements to deal with a statement with respect to National Tourism Week. I was delayed speaking at the Board of Trade today and was unable to be here for that particular section.

MR. SPEAKER: Does the hon. minister have leave of the House to revert to Ministerial Statements?


MR. SPEAKER: The hon. minister does not have leave and I understand the report will be tabled.

Presenting Reports by

Standing and Special Committees

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Port au Port.

MR. SMITH: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the Select Committee appointed to draft a reply to the Speech of His Honour, The Lieutenant-Governor, I present a report of the Select Committee as follows. To His Honour The Lieutenant-Governor, Frederick W. Russell: May it please Your Honour, we the commons of Newfoundland and Labrador in Legislative Session assembled beg to thank Your Honour for the gracious speech with which Your Honour has addressed the House. It is signed by myself, the Member for Terra Nova and the Member for St. Mary's - The Capes.

MR. SPEAKER: When shall the report be received?

MR. ROBERTS: The report shall be received now, of course, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: It is moved and seconded that the report shall be received now rather than tomorrow, carried.

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Works, Services and Transportation.

MR. EFFORD: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

I want to table the Report of the Tender Act Exceptions for March and for April 1993.

Answers to Questions

For which Notice has been Given

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Tourism and Culture.

MR. WALSH: Mr. Speaker, in response to my colleague the Member for St. Mary's, I guess. He was referring to terms of reference for the Avalon tourism study. The terms of reference are now being drafted. The steering committee is made up of representatives from six regions of the Avalon. They include the Northeast, the Isthmus, the Northwest, Mount Pearl, St. John's, and the Southern Avalon. They will meet in the very near future to finalize the terms of reference and at the end of that the terms of reference should go to tender before the end of June and the study should take approximately six to eight months.

The hon. the Minister of Social Services.

MR. LUSH: Mr. Speaker, I have an answer to a question asked by the Member for Bonavista South on May 28. In his preamble to the question the member said in February, three months ago, there were 64,000 individuals on social assistance which represented a caseload of 31,000. His question was: What is the caseload number of people on social assistance this month and how many of them are able-bodied young adults who are unable to find employment? It should be point out first that the number of people on social assistance in February was 67,000 and not 64,000, as he said, which represented a caseload of 31,904. For April, the last month for which statistics are available, there were 68,148 individuals on social assistance representing a caseload of 32,606, and 8613 of those individuals were able-bodied persons, 4556 of which are between the ages of eighteen and fifty years of age.

Orders of the Day

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

MR. ROBERTS: Mr. Speaker, as forecast on Friday I ask if you would be good enough first to call Order No. 3 which is Bill No. 1 and when we complete that we will go on with Bill 3 which is Order 6 and No. 5 which is Order 7.

MR. SPEAKER: I am sorry, that would be Order No. 3, Order No. 6 and Order No. 7.

The hon. the Minister of Health.

DR. KITCHEN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Speaker, this Bill, which I am about to introduce for second reading, will be the most significant bill that I have introduced into the House. Looking back over the past several years I have had the honour to introduce into this House, on behalf of the government, some very significant legislation. Four Budgets which set the tone for budgets across Canada, as this government set the tone across Canada for financial restraint. Also bills which preserved the integrity of the Public Service Pension Plan and the Teachers Pension Plan which by now would have been much closer to bankruptcy and legislation that guaranteed to credit unions their deposits to depositors and strengthened the ability of credit unions to survive in the competitive world of banking.

But far more important than that, Mr. Speaker, is this particular Bill which I am about to introduce this afternoon having to do with the prohibition of smoking in workplaces and public places. It is important not purely for the content of the Bill itself but it indicates a whole new direction on which we are about to embark in health care. We have in the past concentrated largely in health care, on people who are sick. Now what we want to do is to keep people from becoming sick because that is where it has to be.

In Canada we have a relatively good health care system. It is not perfect, there are some who would think it is the best thing that ever happened to mankind, it is not. It is true that when a person becomes sick he/she may see a physician at no immediate cost to himself, it is paid from taxes. He/she may be referred to a hospital which is supported by taxes and is not a charge directly to the patient but one of the weaknesses in the Medicare system is the fact that if medicine is prescribed than it comes out of the pocket of the person unless one happens to be a senior citizen on guaranteed income supplement, in which case that person pays only the druggist fee for putting the pills in the package, and also for people on social assistance for whom many of the medicines are prescribed free of charge. Also there are other categories of people who are on private drug plans such as those which are provided by the government to its own employees, but for a great number of Canadians, particularly Newfoundlanders, those who are on low wages and who are not in companies, the medicine must be provided and this causes great hardship to people who have large medicine bills.

It is a weakness in the Medicare system in Canada and one which I believe Canadians are going to have to address. I have asked our officials here to work on this question to see if we can somehow devise a plan by which people who have extraordinary medicine costs can somehow be helped. That is only one aspect, the main thrust of this and other legislation which I am hoping to be able to introduce - not only legislation but the direction of health care - would be in the area of prevention of disease.

I am going to have quite a few words on the specifics of this Bill on smoking. Smoking is an extremely serious cost to the health care system. Over 700 people in Newfoundland die each year from smoke related diseases, from cancers of various types, from heart and stroke, from emphysema, from other serious diseases. It is not only smoking, smoking is serious and this Bill will deal with it but I want to set the tone, there is alcohol as well. Alcohol is a poison out there in the system. In this Province alcohol is available more than in any other province in Canada, except perhaps the Province of Quebec. There are forces at work which would make it even more available if they had their way. We have to be extremely careful, because of the severe consequences of alcohol and its consequences in the battering that occurs, in the loss of work, in the terrible habits that are accumulating, and I suppose virtually every family and every community in this Province is affected. I believe we have not only to war against smoking, but we have to go to war against the over-availability of alcohol.

A third item which we must concentrate on in prevention is the whole question of fitness. My hon. friend, the Minister of Municipal Affairs and fitness, I guess, mentioned the other day that this was Fitness Week. We have to spend a lot more time encouraging people to be physically fit and to exercise. Because Newfoundlanders are basically a plump people. Some people say we're all a little bit too plump. There are other words of describing that. It's part of the problem we have. We are not as fit as we should be physically.

These three things add to the burden of the health care system. It makes people sick and they end up in hospital. They end up going to the doctor. The doctor puts in his bills. We pay $134 million a year to doctors in this Province.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: (Inaudible).

DR. KITCHEN: No, for a variety of things. Secondly -

MS. VERGE: That's only to MCP.

DR. KITCHEN: Pardon?

MS. VERGE: That's only to MCP. That doesn't count what you pay (inaudible).

DR. KITCHEN: Fair enough. Exactly right. Then there's our food. I had occasion to meet with dieticians, not recently. The theme of their conference was trying to get people to eat food that was appropriate. That didn't make them have heart and stroke and other problems that lead to various forms of disease.

The other point I want to stress is the question of early diagnosis as well. The night before last I met with the Canadian Diabetic Association, Newfoundland branch. I didn't realize, I'm new to the health care system, don't know an awful lot about it, I'm finding out a lot - that there are over 1 million diabetics in Canada. They tell me that for every diabetic that's known there's at least one who doesn't know he has the disease. Diabetes is a disease for many people that can be controlled. If it's not controlled it can end up with pretty dire consequences. They were saying that in Newfoundland there's probably more than one in two not diagnosed. I regard that as a very serious question. That we don't even know who's sick. Who's at the beginning of sickness. So I believe early diagnosis is important.

Last night the hon. Members for Ferryland and St. John's East attended the candlelight ceremony for AIDS. It's always a very sad situation there, to see all of those people, to remember all those who died of AIDS and to think about those who have AIDS and those who might get AIDS. I looked at the statistics. Last year I think we identified - the last calendar year, 1992 - six people with having HIV. This year up until now, up until May 14, we've diagnosed eight. They tell me: we don't know who are HIV positive, because most people don't bother or don't know and they don't get tested.

That's a very serious question. Because if a person knows he has HIV he can take steps to protect other people. Not only that, he can probably take steps to protect his own health from deteriorating as rapidly as it otherwise would. The whole question of early diagnosis has to be looked at too, and I think we have to take these points extremely seriously.

Basically I believe we have to encourage people to take more responsibility for one's own health. In Newfoundland, it's not only that we have been dependent on Ottawa that people tell us economically we are in a state of dependency - but I believe in health care we too are in the state of dependency. We depend on the health care professionals to tell us what to do. What do I do, doctor? What do I do, nurse? What do I do? I do not know why it is that we cannot find out for ourselves what we should be doing in most cases - and there are people who do not see doctors very often because they take responsibility for their health, and I believe we, as individuals, have to take more responsibility for our own health, and we have to have the wherewithal and the knowledge to be able to handle that more carefully. There has to be an end to this dependency on the formal health care system of running to the doctor with every sniffle and cold, because we are over-dependent.

Another thing we have to do in health care, as part of this general thrust we are trying to make through health, is to move away from the institutionalization of people, and we have been doing that far too much. We are about to create community health care boards. As soon as the House closes we will get at it. Hopefully we may be able to get at it before, but it is hard to do things that take careful thought while the House is in session and many things are happening with all the committees of government and so on.

These new boards, I believe, should be under the control largely of the individual, of people, of individuals whose health is affected. There should be health care professionals involved, I am sure, but most of the people, I believe, on the health care boards should be those people who take responsibility for their own personal health and who represent their communities.

I was privileged not long ago to go down to Ferryland and see there a health scheme by which a committee of the community - it was chaired by the hon. the Member for Ferryland for two years, until he left it to engage in other worthwhile pursuits, so they have a new Chairperson down there now - but I was very impressed with what the committee was doing, and the way they were interacting with nurses and health care nurses in the area, and having meetings and trying to get people to take responsibility for their own health. I believe our community health care boards should be built, to some extent, on that model, to as large an extent as possible, so that the people of Newfoundland are concerned about health - not just the people who work in the health care system and are paid by government in hospitals.

The other point I want to make is that we have been putting people into nursing homes. A few years ago, as soon as a person hit the ripe old age of sixty-five, they said: I have done my share. I am going to take my suitcase and walk into a nursing home; or, maybe a son or daughter suggested: Father, get out of your house. I need it. Go out and get in a nursing home. Whatever it was, we saw a lot of people walking away from their homes and walking into nursing homes, and the cost of running a nursing home is becoming very, very great. We have built three nursing homes in the past several years - past last year. Say they cost $8 million each roughly. We had to borrow the money for that. Eight million dollars borrowed, at 10 per cent roughly over a period of time, is $800,000 in interest we have to pay each year, just for the building. You divide that by forty beds and you get $20,000 a bed every year while that is open. That is without anybody being in it. That is even if you keep it open it costs that much just to pay the money that we borrowed to build it. Then you put another $50,000 or $60,000 to operate it, depending on the level of care, and you are running into a pretty high priced facility - which should be available for someone who needs it. I agree. I am not quarrelling with that, but what I am quarrelling with is this whole question of trying to institutionalize people. I believe we can provide home care a lot more cheaply than that, and perhaps better care too. Maybe we can. Maybe it is better than just living in an institution.

The other thing that is happening, too, and we should be encouraging, is the - what I am taking about is the redirection of health care dollars from institutionalized, professionalised health care - not away from them - we have to look after people who are sick. I am not denying that, but what we have to do is try to prevent people from becoming sick, and when they do become sick perhaps we can provide for care in their own home or in their own

communities as much as we possibly can.

In hospital care, too, we have made many changes in the past few years. Now people go to hospitals for very short periods of time. I remember years ago I was in the hospital and it took a year to do what they had to do to me.

AN HON. MEMBER: And they still did not get it right.

DR. KITCHEN: That is it exactly. I remember we were there and they would do whatever they had to do with you then you took weeks and weeks getting better before they discharged you. You were not particularly sick toward the end of it but now that is not the way it is. People who are in hospital now are there for two or three days, or a week, and while they are there, except for maternity which is not a sickness, apart from those most people who are in hospital are extremely sick and that means that the stress on the nurses and the stress on the medical people is much greater than it was a number of years ago when some of the patients were pretty well better and some were sick for a brief period of time and were in hospital a long time.

What is going on in institutions now is very different from what was going on a number of years ago. What I am saying is that the whole health care system has to change, and one of the major changes that I would like to see introduced, and I am bringing in now is this Bill, and this I hope will be the beginning of a whole series of things which we can bring forward to change the health care system from a sick system to a wellness system, where we concentrate on keeping people well, and that is not going to be easy. I tried to get a few hundred thousand dollars diverted from this. We have a health care budget of pretty well $900 million. That is roughly what the health care budget is in this Province. I tried to squeeze $200,000 or $300,000 out of health care for prevention but I could not do it. I will do it next year though, I guarantee you. There will be nobody go across my budget next year. We have our priorities in place and we are going to do it. There is going to be prevention and even in the meantime we are going to try to gather together a few dollars to try to move forward in this question of prevention.

Now, I do not know if I need to go over the evils of smoking but we must take into account the very serious nature of the effects that smoking have, not only on the person who smokes. I do not even believe that a person should have the right to smoke and I tell you why. It is not a matter of human freedom but if a person smokes and makes himself sick and has to end up in hospital and we have to take our taxes to keep that person healthy there is something wrong there. Should a person have that right? Should a person have the right to destroy his health and the rest of us pick up the cost? I do not know whether we should or not. It is a question to ask. It is not only the effect on the individual but it is also the effect on the people who are in the vicinity and who have to pick up the secondhand smoke.

There is evidence that the secondhand or environmental smoke that comes from a cigarette laid on an ashtray, the smoke trickling up, the kind of combustion that takes place there, maybe even more serious, that smoke may be even more deleterious to health than the smoke that is inhaled through a filter and exhaled. That is a very serious thing and the smoker is hurting not only himself, or herself, but also the family. Can you imagine puffing smoke at children? In politics at one time it was always called the back smoke-filled room. How many hours, days, weeks, and months have I spent in the smoke-filled rooms of politics. It is a wonder we are here today.

I saw a video not long ago taken when a woman was in hospital and she was getting an ultrasound. She was pregnant and the ultrasound had to with the child. She was in bed, they were taking the ultrasound, and it was hooked up to a television monitor and the husband was there; she was not the smoker but he was and we could see the child's heartbeat inside the woman, you could see the heart, you could see it actually the way the television had it rigged out, you could see the beat, beat, beat, so he lit a cigarette, inhaled and exhaled in the way that you would, and the baby's heartbeat stopped. I do not know how long it stopped but you could see it stop and that kind of threw me for a loop, that the second hand smoke to a child, an unborn child, to a fetus, is scary, it is really scary. This whole question of smoke, I believe it is one of the most serious things that has affected people and we have to do something about it, so I have no hesitation in bringing in this Bill that would restrict smoking in the workplace and in public places to provide for a safer and healthier environment.

I note that some other provinces have this, but not very many; we will be amongst the first in Canada, I do not know if that is meaningful or not. In Ontario, they do have an act to restrict smoking in workplaces, and in Quebec an act respecting the protection of non-smokers in certain places, and in Manitoba, an act to protect the health of non-smokers, and I believe one of the Atlantic provinces has also introduced or is about to introduce some anti-smoking legislation. We will be right up there and I believe it is important for us to start showing some leadership in the field of health, and I have no hesitation in bringing this Bill in and, there is another bill coming forward, Order No. 9 here, which will be respecting the control of the sale of tobacco to miners and there are other things as well.

I would like for this Province to be amongst the leading provinces of Canada in taking firm steps to curb this terrible health hazard of smoking. I know it is difficult. You cannot condemn I guess, the person who is smoking, I cannot see how we could condemn the person, neither do I know how you can help people give it up. I am open to suggestions. Should we fund the patch, for example? I do not know whether we should or not; I have raised that question: should we fund the patch, the government? They say: well you know, if a person gives up smoking they save so darn much money that they do not need a few extra bucks to buy the patch, but I do not know. I do not know how you could help people -pardon?

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

DR. KITCHEN: Probably - but in any event, what we want to do with this Bill now, is to, if it gets through second reading, I would like then to have it referred to a committee over the summer, so that the various people who are affected, the workplaces and the public places, can have some input into this committee and then in the Fall, in the Committee of the Whole House, we can make any adjustments that are necessary in the Bill. I would like to have this publicly discussed so that it can be fixed up. We do not want to impose unnecessary hardship on businesses that are struggling to try, but at the same time, we are determined to protect the health of people in this Province.

The cost to hospitals of having people in with smoke related illnesses is about $60 million a year; $60 million a year that does not include physicians fees, that does not include time lost from the workplace, that does not include the effects on asthmatics and people with emphysema who are absorbing second hand smoke, nor on performance as well, so that the whole effects of smoking on society, the costs are, I would not say astronomical but they are extremely high, and in a Province such as we are, we have great budgetary constraints, where we cannot really do what we want to do, I do not believe we should be spending money on things that can be prevented.

If we can prevent people from getting sick, then we do not need as much money in the health care system, and I would dearly love to give back to the Minister of Finance, $60 million a year and say: boy, I do not need it, we are all healthy here now, we have given up smoking. We do not drink anymore very much, and here is another $50 million, and not only that, we exercise all the time and here are a few more dollars and in fact we can cut back on the health care system immensely. I look forward to that time when we have a healthy bunch of people in this Province and we can - I won't say shut down the health care system. But we can collapse it, we can make it smaller. I believe every health care professional whom I've talked to about this is very enthusiastic about this, even though they make their living from sick people. Yet most physicians, the physicians and the nurses, are all enthusiastic about this legislation. I commend it to you. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

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

MR. SULLIVAN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. It's my pleasure to rise and speak positively about any legislation that's going to enhance the standards of living and affect in a very positive way people's lives.

It's well established by all associations pertaining to health matters. One specific one here, the American Heart Association, in its magazine Circulation indicated that: environmental tobacco smoke, or ETS as it's called, is a major preventible cause of cardiovascular disease and death. In fact, the AHA - the American Heart Association's council - went so far as to urge the elimination of all exposure to nonsmokers to ETS. I know that's going to a fairly strong extreme. But when you look at the costs that are being incurred in fighting that, and the affect it's having on other people's lives, other than the people who are doing the smoking and inflicting the cause, we have to look very seriously whether the measures here in this legislation, this Bill, have gone far enough.

In fact, it goes on to say that AHA released back in 1992 - and this November of 1992 - I read it in the Mayo Clinic health newsletter that I've been subscribing to and reading for several years, and other medical articles too. They went on to say: the risk of death due to heart disease is increased by 30 per cent among those exposed to environmental tobacco smoke, at home. It could be much higher exposure in the workplace where higher levels of ETS have been found to be present.

If you look at that increased risk alone just from this environmental tobacco smoke, has caused 40,000 cardiovascular related deaths in the Unite States alone, in addition to almost another 5,000 in lung cancer. So if you equate 45,000 deaths, just looking at the increased risk of ETS, if you put that on a scale in Canada, where there's a nine or ten to one usually ratio in numbers, and if you could equate the same here in Canada, we have between 4,000 and 5,000 deaths that would be directly attributed to the increased risks associated with environmental tobacco smoke. That is very significant and enough to very seriously consider taking some drastic steps to curb second-hand smoke and curb smoking in general in public places.

In another article it said: cigarette smoking is the leading cause of preventible premature deaths in middle-aged people. In fact, more than 80 per cent of deaths from coronary heart disease and about two-thirds from cancer are the causes of people who are sixty-five and over, in fact, where it has a more profound affect upon their lives. Because usually they're not in the situation where they can combat these specific diseases and they're not usually in the same form of health as the people who are much younger.

Male smokers, for example, have twice the death rate in this group as those who smoke as those who don't; for women, it's 1.8 times. When you look today there's an increasing number of women smoking today and starting at a much younger age. The affects are going to be even more pronounced in the future. You look at cigarette smoke, for example. There are about 4,000 chemicals alone in cigarette smoke. Imagine, 4,000 chemicals. Some of these chemicals are poisonous. There's DDT found in cigarette smoke, there's formaldehyde, there's arsenic and various other compounds that are very dangerous to people.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. SULLIVAN: Carbon monoxide, of course, and the incomplete combustion of that itself, and all the related particles, is causing - inhaling into people's systems in secondary smoke - very serious problems in innocent, unrelated people to cigarette smoking.

MR. W. MATTHEWS: Never smoked, did you Loyola?

MR. SULLIVAN: No, I gave up smoking when I was thirteen. That's when I got sensible.

Out of these 4,000 chemicals which are found in smoke it has been estimated that 70 - 90 per cent in that range, from different studies, are retained in the human lungs and some of these in minute amounts. Traces may not have a very significant impact at an early age but it is mostly the accumulation of these over a period of time that have serious impact. Surely one, two or a whole combination of these, with time, will have a very serious effect upon the health of ordinary people. Very much unaware, people who have never smoked themselves are now being the subject of increased cost to our medical system and poor health because other people are continuing to smoke.

There are a few other points here. I read in an article on advertising a few very interesting things on advertising. Research was done over a twenty-eight year period on ninety-nine publications. They found that those publications that have advertisers for smoking had thirty times the chance that they would not carry an article related to smoking and the ill effects. For every 1 per cent increase in advertising revenue that came into these magazines, there was three times the chance that they would not carry an article adverse to smoking. In other words the big tobacco companies are buying their way into the minds of people across this country and across the United States. I think it is a sad commentary when people, journalists and magazines, are depending upon the sources of revenue for something that is having an adverse affect upon peoples lives and it is an area which we have to do something about. It is estimated that $3.27 billion was spent on advertising in 1988 alone. In 1988 there was $3.27 billion spent, just in one particular year. If you break that down, that comes to $100 per second spent on advertising on the use of cigarettes, tobacco and other related products. That is not counting other related drugs to cigarettes.

So, if we look today, here in the legislation that is introduced here in Bill No. 1, "An Act Respecting A Smoke-Free Environment In The Workplace And In Public Places In The Province". I think it is a bill which is long overdue here in Newfoundland and I support it enthusiastically. In fact, as I said, I think we should go a little bit further supporting it but I have some great reservations in just legislation alone in bills. I have seen so many bills and legislation go through, nothing at all is done with enforcement. We are seeing it all around us. We see garbage thrown out of cars, it litters the roadside, beer bottles being thrown out because of the anti-drinking laws and still they pollute the countryside with beer bottles. You can walk every second day around the roadsides and collect beer bottles because we are not focusing on the real problem. The real problem is enforcement and there are fines there in the system, it is useless to have fines in the system if we are not going to enforce them. It is better to enforce a ten dollar fine 1,000 times than have to enforce $100,000 fine once. We have to get it through to the authorities and put extra pressure on the public, upon the enforcement officers to take the steps that are going to have a significant effect in curbing the violations of the system.

MR. W. MATTHEWS: No, authorities, your ears perked up there.

MR. SULLIVAN: I apologize for waking up the Minister of Works, Services and Transportation.

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. W. MATTHEWS: Yes, we will put you back to sleep soon enough.

MR. SULLIVAN: Peter Fenwick - I will send you over his article a little later but -

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. SULLIVAN: Getting back to the nature of the Bill, I think it is important that we do, and very seriously, that we do take steps to enforce this regulation. I have great concerns in this Bill, that when this Bill is passed, and I have every confidence that it will be - there is a responsibility here placed upon an individual and a responsibility placed upon an employer and it is the employers responsibility to see that the law is upheld within that person's premises. Now, it also gives the authority to the employer to have a restriction completely on smoking in that person's premises too, because the Bill says it 'may' - a person 'may' designate - so in other words there is no compulsion on the employer to designate at all. That is fine. I do not have a problem with that, but if somebody was in a lounge and is restricted to the one-half where you can smoke, or 20 per cent where you can smoke, and he walks up to the bar with a cigarette, the employer may be responsible for enforcing that, and therefore that person could be convicted for something over which he does not have fair control.

I know when we get into debate in committee there is an out there from a legal point of view in that Bill also, for the person where he would not be charged. He has to reasonably be able to control. I guess there is an avenue out there, but I think we have to put the greatest burden upon the abuser of the system - not the one who just lets the system be abused. I think it is very important that the penalties be in line with the seriousness of the abuse in the system. I am sure that is what the minimum/maximum things are proposing to do.

We have, up in our area, as the Minister of Health is well aware - he attended a function just last Wednesday, I believe, up in Calvert - the primary health care committee that was established just three years ago, in line with the World Health Organization, and with the support of Health and Welfare Canada, and with $170,000 initially per annum funding from the provincial Department of Health, established a primary health care project that is being pioneered in my district in Ferryland, and takes in part also of St. Mary's - The Capes district and Trepassey area, and a similar project going on in Denmark.

I had the privilege of being the Chairperson of that for two years. Upon being elected to the House last June I resigned from that, and extensive work was done to improve the lifestyles and the health of people within the area combined, and that is roughly 8,500 people on the Southern Shore from St. Shotts down to Bay Bulls. In that we have identified, through various interviews - hundreds of interviews and so on - the analyses of the interviews were compiled, and they identified cardiovascular related diseases as being one of the major problems in our area. Most people think that smoking and lung cancer is the first association they strike, and a lot of people fail to realize that lung cancer is only one of the adverse effects of smoking. It is not the number one cause of disease and cost for people who smoke. The number one cause is heart related diseases of a cardiovascular nature, and people who may not be in as good physical health as they normally would have the problem compounded with smoking. We found that smoking was a problem, but it is one that is very difficult to really measure in concrete terms, especially over a short haul.

We have been successful in changing the lifestyles and the views and thinking of people over the past three years. People have taken a greater care about their health. I have soon more nonsmoking signs on doors in houses than I ever saw in my life. I have seen people out doing their daily walks, into those weigh-in clinics, going down just every Wednesday in some areas and weighing in, in their own privacy, and keeping their own little score cards, and picking up information on diets and various other things that would improve and change their lifestyles and help their health in the long-term. That has crept into the system there. It has crept in in a very positive way, and it is a way, even though Health and Welfare Canada have Dr. Ross and his team of psychologists doing an evaluation, the results really cannot be seen - the full impact - in a short-term. The effect of this and its continuation is going to be seen in ten, fifteen, and twenty years, so we have to spend money today to improve our lifestyles in the future.

That is as important with health as any other area - to have proper planning. We have to make an investment today to reap a benefit, or our cost for health care through hospitals and through caring, through out-patient clinics all over this Province, is going to reach an astronomical level, if it is not, at the moment, as the Minister of Health indicated. It is close to that level. It is going to reach astronomical levels if we do not do something about it now to try to work on an education and a prevention process and change people's way of thinking. That is where the problem is lying, and I think we are failing today. We are failing today within many of our schools where young people are, where people get into a certain way of life. We have to focus a very intensive education program on smoking within the schools. I had the opportunity at a school where I taught to monitor that over a period of time. We had very few male smokers in the school where I taught. Very few. In fact, twice as many female smokers as male smokers, but the percentage was very low compared to the rest of the Province. Maybe because the staff at one time had eight people who smoked and they all gave up smoking over a period of a number of years. Your own way of thinking, your own lifestyle, and I guess it streams right out in society and the classroom and everywhere, it has an affect I think. I had the opportunity to teach science and biology in particular, in chemistry, and I had the opportunity to be able to deal with it in some ways under various topics the ill effects of these.

I think we've got to develop - maybe the Minister of Education, through some program through our school systems. Because it's difficult - it's never too late to change. Even when you're sixty-five and give it up, the affects are very pronounced too. It's well documented that a person can, over the period of a number of years, the ill affects of smoking can diminish. But we have to start it in the beginning. We have too many people we're trying to get away from the smoking habit when we shouldn't have that problem. We should be keeping people from ever getting into the smoking habit.

I think it's very important that we treat our health seriously. This is a small step. It's a small but important one. I won't get into too many specifics at this time. We have an opportunity to do that in the Committee there, and there are a few I want to comment on in a little more detail. I reiterate again, we cannot underestimate the importance of enforcing legislation on a bill that's brought in. It has no merit whatsoever if we don't do something about it and we don't have the resources to enforce it. Because a bill is passed here and it sits on a shelf. It has no significance to the outside public. We've got to do it. I know it's to come into affect I think in one year from the date in which it receives royal assent. That should give us a period of time to be able to properly inform the public and prepare them for I guess the consequences.

With that I conclude. I think this government has got to accelerate the pace at which they are dealing with the health care problems of this Province, or we're going to have a lot higher per cent of our budget dealing with health care. Especially here in a province that's diminishing and a lot of people are leaving our Province. The healthy people are leaving our Province. The people who are leaving to go to work are leaving our Province here. People who are not working, and the elderly and so on, who need care, they're the people who are here. The cost per capita of caring for these people is becoming, I guess - reaching extremely high levels. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

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

MS. VERGE: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I take pleasure in joining with my colleague, the Member for Ferryland and the Official Opposition health critic, in voicing support for this Bill to outlaw and limit smoking in workplaces and public places.

The Wells government took the lead in banning smoking in provincial government buildings and I commend them for their leadership in that respect, and for their initiative in putting forward this Bill. I have been a harsh critic of the Wells administration and I've said on more than one occasion that at least there's one good thing this government has done. That has been to ban smoking in provincial government offices. Prior to the ban of smoking in Confederation Building, let me tell you I suffered through many Cabinet and caucus meetings at which the majority of my colleagues smoked. Now in those days we had windows that could open, so at least I got some relief by opening the windows. Nowadays most of this building is hermetically sealed, so it's even more important now that smoking be banned.

I listened with interest to the speeches of the minister when he introduced the Bill, and of my colleague. They're two of the best speeches I've heard in this Assembly for quite some time. The minister talked about the need for a fundamental change in our government health care delivery. He advocated re-orienting the system so that there is much more emphasis put on preventing illness and promoting wellness. This is a pet concern of mine which I have spoken about in the minister's hearing a number of times before. Last December during our all-night sitting between the hours of 2:30 and 4:30 in the morning the minister put forward his bill to authorize the Cabinet to set up regional community health boards. Now, that is a bill that excited me but I pointed out weaknesses in it. It is simply a shell of a piece of legislation because it does not require the Cabinet to do anything. It empowers the Cabinet to set up one or more regional community health boards but enables the Cabinet to continue to do what it has been doing, which is nothing.

The government announced an intention to set up regional community health care boards over a year ago and the previous minister, the current Minister of Education, last Spring used to hold up a circle chart showing the responsibilities that would be assigned to the regional boards and bragging that the government would have the first such board, the one for Western Newfoundland, in place by the Fall, but in fact, Mr. Speaker, nothing has happened. The new minister seems to have abandoned the circled chart and we do not have a regional community health board for Western Newfoundland.

However it is done we have to find ways to put more emphasis on promoting health. We have to help people change their habits so they exercise more, eat better, and take more responsibility for their own health. The minister's budget is the largest of any department of government. The Estimates which we have before us now call for Department of Health spending of $875 million. Now, the bulk of that is slated to go into institutions, physicians and drugs, and a minuscule portion of it is set aside for community health, for education, and for positive preventative programs.

Under the category of community health there is a $26 million spending forecast so we have roughly $25 million for community health out of a total health budget of $875 million. We are talking less than 3 per cent of the provincial Department of Health spending going into community health and less again going into promotion, advertising services to prevent illness. One of the challenges then is to address that imbalance, to boost the education and prevention effort, and lessen the treatment required.

Our health system is complicated. The federal government has a critical role in providing funding and the federal government, through legislation, has attached strings to the funding it gives the provinces, so any fundamental change in our health system is going to require co-operative effort by the federal and provincial governments. Mr. Speaker, we have no choice but to change. The system we have, which offers many advantages, is simply too expensive and the challenge is to find ways to reform the system to retain the advantages but re-orient it in such a way that in the future Canadians will be able to afford a good health care system.

So far we have heard politicians talk about the problem. I suppose that is the a step. There has been some mention of co-pay or user fee, but, Mr. Speaker, charging patients really is not addressing the fundamental problem. It seems to me, we have to look at the essence of the system we have. We have a system that is physician controlled, physician driven; physicians, doctors, have a virtual monopoly over the most important services and physicians are in control of treatment, of tests and of institutional care and of prescription of drugs. Physicians are pretty much in control. The Minister of Health and his staff are not in control. The hospital and nursing home administrators are not in control, all these people have important policy and administrative responsibilities, but when you get right down to it, it is the physicians who are making the decisions that affect the spending of the bulk of public funds for health.

The physicians, really are not accountable, so one of the basic challenges is to find ways to make physicians accountable, to provide a positive reward system for physicians caring for patients in ways that will promote positive behaviour and individual responsibility and, Mr. Speaker, I think it is time for us to examine the monopoly that physicians enjoy. Is it really necessary for physicians alone, among health care professionals, to have the power to provide as many services at public expense as they do? MCP, our Medical Care Commission, does not pay for nurses to provide services to patients, does not fund nutritionists to give diet counselling, does not fund chiropractors to give services to patients. Now in some instances, Mr. Speaker, upon physician referral, some other health care professionals may recover the cost of their services from MCP, but again, it comes back to the physicians being in control.

The Southern Shore Community Health Program that both the minister and the Member for Ferryland talked about, seems to me to be a step in the right direction. I was glad to hear the minister speak about it because somebody suggested to me recently that the provincial government's commitment to that program may be diminishing. I do not know the details of the results of the program, I listened with interest to my colleague but I was involved in some early discussions among the ARNN and representatives of the World Health Organization and people in Denmark, who had operated a similar program, and it seemed to me that the model offered many advantages.

I was glad to hear the minister say that in engendering more self-help, more individual responsibility for health, we have to get people exercising more and eating better. He talked about the significance of the provincial government fitness programs, referring to programs of his colleague - that would be his colleague, the Minister of Municipal and Provincial Affairs - Mr. Speaker, sadly, the government has significantly cut funding for those programs for fitness and recreation programs. Now there may be room to economize there, I am not saying that, but the words of the Minister of Health and the actions of the government in budgeting for Municipal and Provincial Affairs community recreation and fitness programs seemed to be inconsistent. I'd be interested in hearing the Minister of Health discuss how better levels of fitness can be achieved despite the cuts in provincial funding.

The minister asked rhetorically whether we shouldn't think about funding the patch as a preventative measure, as a measure of getting people to give up smoking. I jokingly retorted across the House - I don't think the minister understood what I meant - that the government is presently funding the other `Ps'. Many Newfoundlanders and Labradorians in recent months have been talking about the four `Ps'. The four `Ps' are: the pill, the pogey, the package, and the patch. The government obviously are funding the pill, the pogey and the package. So perhaps for the reasons the minister suggested it would be worthwhile, it would pay dividends, for the government to fund the patch. Since there's all kinds of research referred to by the minister, cited in more detail by the Opposition critic, about the harmful effects of smoking, the cost to people's lives and health, and the cost to taxpayers because of the need to provide treatment for people who become ill as a result of smoking. If we could cut down on the rate of smoking by making the patch more readily available then perhaps that would be a wise use of taxpayers dollars.

The Opposition critic talked about the incidence of smoking and a profile of people who are smoking, pointing out that there's been a rising incidence on the part of women. Saying women and girls at younger ages have taken up smoking. That's been a concern of mine. It seems to me that advertisers and tobacco companies very cynically took advantage of the womens' movement by linking in their promotional efforts smoking with liberation, smoking with freedom, smoking with power.

Alcohol and beer companies have done the same thing. So what we have now are many teenage girls and young women who have taken up smoking and have gotten hooked - because after all, it is an addictive chemical, an addictive substance - who've taken up drinking in a heavy way and are hooked on it. Once you form those habits it's very hard to give them up.

It seems we have to find strategies for countering or banning advertising by tobacco, alcohol and beer companies which has been so effective in appealing to young people, and young girls in particular. We have to find ways of assisting women as well as men in knocking the habit. There are probably some different reasons why women are smoking compared to men. There may be some biological or physiological factors that make it more difficult for some people, women or men, to break the habit. We have to find ways of helping them.

I'll sum up my remarks on the content of the Bill by again expressing support and praise for the government in taking a leadership role in curbing the rate of smoking and doing away with smoking in workplaces and public places so that nonsmokers will no longer be subjected to the same extent to unwanted second-hand smoke. I share the concern expressed by my colleague about enforcement. As my colleague said, there's not much point in having a good piece of legislation if there isn't appropriate follow up and enforcement.

Finally, I'd like to raise a question about process. This is a very important measure. The minister said at the top of his speech it's the most significant bill he's had the privilege of introducing in this Legislature. It is a measure that will affect virtually everyone in the Province. It will affect very directly business people and owners of public premises. It will affect every citizen who makes up the public, and I would suggest this is a prime piece of legislation for referral to a legislation review committee.

I would not want to do anything to stall or delay, but since the Bill now provides for its coming into force one year after Royal Assent, I would like to suggest that we refer the Bill to a legislation review committee for hearings and consideration over the Summer; come back and pass the Bill in the Fall so that it can receive Royal Assent before Christmas, and have it come into force this time next year - six months after Royal Assent.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

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

MR. J. BYRNE: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

I also rise in support of the Bill with respect to a smoke-free environment. Mr. Speaker, I do not smoke. I have never smoked, although I come from a family of twelve children and my parents, they all smoked, except myself, so I will try to keep an open mind on this. From talking to smokers, I thank God I do not smoke and I never smoked.

I would like to commend the minister on his attempt to deal with the problem of smoking in the workplace and in public in general, in trying to deal with the problems and costs for the health care system. Although I was having supper with an individual the other night and he smoked - he has smoked all of his life - and he put the argument forth that they do not really cause that much trouble for the health care system because -

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. J. BYRNE: I do not necessarily agree with the argument, but he was saying that if a person started to smoke when he was fourteen or fifteen, whatever the case may be, and he smokes all of his life and ends up in hospital when he is fifty or sixty or seventy, with some disease, he is after paying for his health care costs long beforehand, when you take into consideration interest and whatever the case may be - but that is an argument that he was putting forth, not necessarily one I agree with.

I was recently reading an article on smoking, smokers in general, or whatever the case may be, and I was surprised to find out that young teenage girls are the biggest growing sector in the smoking area. I think we need to educate these people more than we have been doing, with respect to prevention and what it does cause down the road - the health hazards. With respect to that and the environment, it is only this past weekend, when I was out all day Saturday with a group of young people from Logy Bay, down Middle Cove and Outer Cove, cleaning up our byroads - the pop bottles and snack boxes and whatever the case may be - and I had a chance to speak with those individuals after, and I think that is where we have to come from, to educate them at a very young age, to know what the end result is down the road.

Being a nonsmoker, I will try to keep an open mind on the concerns that smokers have, and nonsmokers. The negative effects that second-hand smoke has on smokers has been studied to some extent, but I am not sure of the conclusions yet. We hear all kinds of facts and figures thrown around all the time, but it constantly changes from one day to the next, so I will try to keep an open mind on that.

My biggest problem with smoking, personally - I never had a problem with smokers' secondhand smoke - personally - I never asked anybody to put out a cigarette, but as I get older I find that the places that it does start to bother me is in restaurants and in supermarkets. You see people picking up groceries, that type of thing, in supermarkets, having a lit cigarette. I do not think it is the place for it, so we certainly should be looking at that area. Today I believe that most smokers actually do respect the rights of the nonsmokers, and I do not think they have any problem if you ask them to put out a cigarette or anything like that.

I have some concerns with respect to the Bill itself, and I know we are going to be reviewing it down the road, but the employer or the owner does not have to provide a space. This Bill says an employer may provide a space, but where? He may provide space outside if he so wishes. I notice now, coming into Confederation Building or any public building, people are out on the steps in the middle of Winter, smoking and lighting up cigarettes and having a smoke, because they are addicted of course. Are we looking to cure one problem and start another problem or are we going to have people smoking out on the steps getting pneumonia and this type of thing because they have to have a cigarette, so I think this is something which we have to be very careful of.

I believe that we can carry this too far, I have had occasion to be in hospital recently, over the past couple of years and there is supposed to be no smoking in hospital rooms. We have terminally ill patients in hospitals and in private rooms or whatever the case may be and they are not allowed to smoke. We can carry this a little bit too far, so we should look at that also. There are going to be costs involved with respect to this, especially for owners and the employers, to provide space if they so wish for proper ventilation and that type of thing. If they do that there will be cost involved with renting. If a company is renting space and he has to provide more space for non-smokers or whatever the case may be, there will be costs involved there for so much money per square metre or whatever the case may be. There may be costs involved with owners having to construct a room or space for non-smokers. This would put a burden of course on employers, on top of what has been there now with respect to the taxes. So I am wondering, is there going to be any assistance for employers or owners along that route?

Another concern which I would have, when you read the legislation, is how far do owners go to enforce the regulations? Is it going to be sufficient to go to an individual who is smoking in a non-scheduled area and say: listen put out the cigarette please. Will that suffice? Will he be after doing his duty when he does that or will you have to say - okay, ask, if he is in a bar for instance, will he have to go to the bouncer and say: listen, this person will not put out his cigarette, throw him out. That in itself will cause problems. Also would he have to call the police? Where is it going to end? How far along does the enforcement go? For my own interest, I was wondering, are there going to be inspectors appointed for this? To inspect and check out buildings from one end to the other, all over the Province? If there are going to be inspectors hired, how many are going to be hired? What will be the cost to the government? These are all factors which have to be looked at. If there are no inspectors hired, how will the legislation be enforced or as some of the previous speakers mentioned, can it be enforced? What is the point of bringing in legislation if it cannot be enforced?

Mr. Speaker, I am not going to take up a lot of time with respect to this legislation because I know it may possibly be referred to committee or whatever the case may be put these are just a few of the concerns that hit me right off, in just reviewing the Bill. There is also another one there with respect to the fines for the employer or the non-employer. Now I believe we are being legislated to death in a lot of cases, although I do agree with this legislation. But the fines, from $500 - $5,000 for an employer or an owner, this may be too stiff in my estimation. The people who should be hit, if there is going to be anyone hit, with this legislation are the people who would be violating the regulations.

So, if you are going to make stiff regulations it should be with respect to the people who would be violating it but then again this could be argued, everybody has rights or whatever the case may be, so we have to be careful on that. I would like to say that I do support the intent of the Bill and that I look forward to the Legislative Review Committee, possibly I may be able to have some input there to address some of my concerns. I am sure as time goes by we will be hearing a lot about this Bill from the general public and especially the smokers, who it affects most. So, on that, Mr. Speaker, I will end. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: If the hon. the Minister of Health speaks now he will close the debate.

DR. KITCHEN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. A number of points were raised, I will not attempt to answer them all but I will certainly take them under advisement. I am a bit concerned about the remarks made by the last speaker, the Member for St. John's East Extern, on the one hand he is for the Bill and on the other hand he is against it. I do not know if you know about this one, about the girl who asked her mother if she could go swimming:

Mother may I go out to swim?

Indeed you can my daughter,

Hang your hat on a hickory limb,

But don't go near the water.

Now, that is like the hon. member, he is for in the spirit of the Bill as long as we do not do anything about it. We must stamp out this smoking.

AN HON. MEMBER: Would you recite that again.

AN HON. MEMBER: No, no, don't tempt him, no, don't tempt him.

DR. KITCHEN: I appreciate the problems and this is why we are introducing it gradually. I would prefer a much tougher bill as two other members from the opposite side said, but we have to be reasonable about this. We can put undue hardship on businesses and this is why we are giving them a whole year to get their act in order, this is why we are saying `may provide' rather than `must provide'alternate space, but at the same time, let no one think that we are just introducing cosmetic legislation. This is serious legislation.

We must stop the deaths of over 700 people a year, through smoke related illnesses and the impact that smoking has on other people. This has to be stopped, otherwise we will never be able to afford to operate the health care system, so we are serious in this matter, extremely serious. Possibly, later on, we may be able to introduce more serious legislation. I agree to that, legislation is not the only answer, there has to be a vigourous education campaign. It has to be addressed in part to people in high schools, that is a very important point and I think we will debate that more when we get into Bill 9, when we focus on the raising of the level of purchase of tobacco up to nineteen, because most people get hooked on nicotine in their early years. If you do not smoke by the time you are twenty or twenty-five, the chances are you would not be smoking at all, so people get hooked when they are young and they stay hooked, this is the problem with the thing but that is for another bill.

One thing I want to comment on is the user fee question which one of the members raised. We have other ways I think of controlling the overuse of physicians services, than user fees. Right now, in the Province, we have a joint committee of physicians and the Department of Health, and we have a capped floored budget, a certain amount of money spent on physicians fees, that is what it is going to be, and we have signed a five-year agreement and that five-year agreement is in place for awhile, but what it does, is that physicians watch physicians, and there is established - I do not know if it is fully established now, but it is about to be established or it has been recently established by the joint committee - a Physicians Review Committee, whereby, the practice of what physicians do is monitored by other physicians and by MCP, so that anyone whose practice is out of line can be talked to by this peer review committee, and I think that is extremely important. I believe that will cut down the overuse of physicians services, which maybe some physicians drift into when they tell people to come back and come back and come back, and that may do more than the institution of user fees, because what user fees would do basically, would be to deprive people who cannot afford it, medical care.

People who can afford will still overuse, if they are in that habit, if you want to see the doctor and you have a fair amount of money, it does not matter if there is a five-dollar fee there, you can afford to pay it so you keep going twenty times. It is the person who does not have the money that you deprive, so what happens is that the abuse is not stopped, it is just that the person who cannot afford to pay the fee is deprived, perhaps of badly needed service. So I do not think we will be, I am not sure, but I do not think we will be bringing in user fees because the experience has shown that it is not effective in arriving at the goals to which it is supposed to.

Anyway, as far as the Southern Shore is concerned and the experiment that was there, we are awaiting a report from the valuator and we will look at it to see how it is going there. I think I will stop there, Mr. Speaker, and move second reading of this Bill.

On motion, a Bill, "An Act Respecting A Smoke-Free Environment In The Workplace And In Public Places In The Province," read a second time, ordered referred to a Committee of the Whole House on tomorrow. ( Bill No. 1).

MR. ROBERTS: Mr. Speaker, my friend, the Minister of Tourism and Culture has promised us that he will use not more than the hour allotted to him, so could we call Order 6, Bill No. 3, Sir?

Motion, second reading of a bill, "An Act Respecting The Department Of Tourism And Culture," ( Bill No. 3).

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Tourism and Culture.

MR. WALSH: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. It is indeed with a degree of pride and confidence that I stand to speak and introduce the Act Respecting The Department Of Tourism And Culture.

As most people in the House know, this new department was established on July 17 of last year, and it was a major platform in the Strategic Economic Plan as put forward by the Premier and the government in June of last summer. The new department saw portions and segments of other departments coming together to form this new division known as Tourism and Culture. The various areas that came together consisted of: Parks and Wildlife; responsibilities for the arts and cultural centres; public libraries; Wildlife division; the craft industry, or the cottage industry, as we commonly know it; and other aspects relating to that, including Historic Resources and others.

The concept behind the new department is very simple. The intent was to bring together all the various components that could be utilized and developed in promoting our tourism industry in the Province, and to set out with that a comprehensive plan whereby we could market each of those components, instead of separately, we could do it together. The idea also behind the department was to ensure that when looking to prepare a development plan that would take us into the next century that the aspects built into the new Department of Tourism and Culture would, without a doubt, build upon our successes of the past but also allow us to look forward to the kinds of things that we could do to enhance the tourism industry in our Province.

The tourism industry in Newfoundland is worth some $440 million annually. It currently consists of the employment of some 12,000 people. Those 12,000 individuals are employed in some 2,000 separate companies throughout the Province. It is the goal of the department in terms of working with our partners in the industry to turn that $440 million industry into some $800 million over the next ten to twelve years. Our intention is to do that by systematically working together to build upon what we currently have. In doing that we should not have any difficulties because of our partnerships and our willingness to work together with other groups and other agencies to take that $440 million industry that we now have, as I said, and to turn it into an $800 million industry over the next ten years.

There are many areas in which we hope to do that. I think one of the most crucial ones we've been moving towards over the last number of years is our sense of cooperation and our willingness to work with the federal government on a number of subsidiary agreements that we have, but also in terms of working with them in what we've been able to accomplish in our dealings with ACOA. A lot of the facilities in our Province have been upgraded through funding that has been provided by ACOA. I have to give them full marks in terms of their endeavours within the tourism industry.

We also believe that over the coming years the best opportunity for Newfoundland and Labrador to achieve the kinds of dollars and the new input that we're looking for from either international, and in particular European dollars, can come through tourism by way of our promotion of this industry. The Cabot 500 Corporation is now in place and we're going to see with that a tremendous new thrust in our tourism development in the Bristol area of England, but also in terms of England itself, Ireland and Scotland, by encouraging those people to visit our Province and to come here and to be a part of what it is that we are hoping to do for the Cabot 500 Corporation, which will be in 1997.

We are also looking to build upon other aspects of our industry, and that in particular being the Wildlife branch. We're very confident that we're able to take our outfitting industry, that today is worth some $11 million, and build upon that as part of our adventure tourism over the coming years. That's a package that we hopefully will be able to release to the public in the next few months. Our adventure tourism package, in particular for the outfitters, will see us working with outfitters in order to build upon again the shoulder seasons. We believe that with the camps that are strategically located throughout the Province we are able to convince our operators in the outfitting industry to build yet another business for themselves, and that is during the winter seasons.

We can do that by putting together tourism packages that will allow people who are coming to take advantage of our Fall and in particular our winter seasons to use everything from snowmobiles to cross-country skis to visit, I guess, the hinterland of our Province. By getting into the interior of our Province, by moving from camp to camp they are able to see and enjoy what we have that is the beauty of our Province.

Under the new Department of Tourism and Culture one of the aspects that we intend to work very hard on with the industry is the tourism marketing approach to what we want to do in the Province. What we intend to do is to establish in Newfoundland and Labrador a top of mind destination for residents from the United States and Canada and other countries, who are seeking in particular our culture and the historic as well as the recreational aspects of our Province. We want to establish and implement programs tailored to encourage also Newfoundlanders to see more of our Province.

As of today, as a matter of fact, we've just begun the Ours To Discover promotion in our Province. That's a promotion whereby we work with six other partners in this Province to promote tourism within our own Province, to recommend to people in our Province to see more of what is Newfoundland and Labrador. In particular, to make sure that people in our Province are aware of the various festivals that are taking place this Summer. To take advantage of the various events that are planned throughout the Province, and to encourage them to visit as many parts of the Province as they can. To make sure that they take the time to visit and tour the Viking Trail, which goes from Deer Lake all the way through to St. Anthony and across to the Labrador Straits, where they have an opportunity to visit not only Red Bay but to visit areas such as the Point Amor lighthouse; and for me, what is probably one of the most under-promoted and underrated sites in North America, and that is the burial ground of a Maritime Archaic Indian on the Labrador Straits, the burial ground of a twelve-year old boy who was buried there some 7,500 years ago.

These are the kinds of things that I believe we can carve out a special niche. There is nowhere else in North America that we know of, a burial ground that is some 7,500 years old. What we want to do is to encourage people and historians and tourists to come from around North America to see that.

In my own district, most people are not aware of the fact that the only place in North America where guns were actually fired in the Second World War in a real battle where people lost their lives took place on Bell Island, where a number of ore carriers were sunk by a German U-boat during the Second World War. The guns that are still there on the hill overlooking the Tickle were fired back at the German U-boats in defence of the ore carriers.

Those are the kind of things that are a part of this 500 year old history that we know to be Newfoundland and Labrador, so we want to build upon those aspects, as I said not just in my own district but in other parts of the Province. We want to make sure that the tourism planning and research branch of our department is able to carry out the kind of work we want them to do. We want to make sure that we are able to maintain strategic and proper planning. We want to make sure that we have good solid research initiatives to ensure the continued and co-ordinated development of all tourist and cultural services in our Province. We want to make sure that they are in a position to evaluate the kind of programs that are being offered to us by the free enterprise area. We want to ensure that the planning and research division are there to work closely with those that are looking to invest their own dollars in this industry to ensure that they have the proper statistics and background and information that they will need.

Mr. Speaker, the new Department of Tourism and Culture, as I said, encompasses a number of different areas and one that we see a tremendous amount of, not only hope, but a tremendous amount of opportunity for growth is in the craft development or what we commonly refer to as the cottage industries. We want to make sure that the mandate for this particular group which is to develop, co-ordinate, and promote programs and activities is designed to not only support for also to stimulate the individuals that are involved, the companies that are involved, and, in particular, the associations that are involved in the craft giftware and also the apparel manufacturing sectors that make up the cottage industries or the craft industries in our Province. This particular branch we are working with called craft development will ensure that the marketing, design, and promotion of our crafts in this Province receive what is without a doubt needed in terms of allowing them to establish themselves not only in this Province but throughout North America.

For the first time this year the new tour guide that we are offering, and we will send some 400,000 copies throughout North America over the next twelve months, has a particular section dedicated strictly to our craft and our cottage industries. There are a number of pages in that tour guide that specifically show and depict the kind of things that we are well known for.

Another initiative that we are taking through this department this year will see the creation of, and the establishment of, display cases within the tourist chalets that we have within the Province with one specific intention in mind, and that is to focus on, depict, and display, the crafts that have been produced in our Province in that given region. Now, it is not the intention of the centres to sell the product but rather to have it on display and to advise tourists where they can purchase those particular craft items in that geographic region of our Province. The one in Deer Lake, as an example, will not only promote that region but it will also promote the crafts and handiworks that are produced along the Viking Trail and in Labrador. It will tell the tourists where those items can be purchases and where they should come from.

Mr. Speaker, one of the other aspects of the new Department of Tourism and Culture is in our cultural affairs division. We intend to provide through that division an overview and involvement in cultural activities both inside and outside the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador. We intend to ensure that whenever possible we are able to not only promote on our own stages local talent, but we are encouraging any shows that are coming into our Province, that intend to be a part of the cultural affairs division in terms of the kinds of shows that we are putting on our own stages, we are insisting that those groups that are coming in also employ, wherever possible - and we give preference to those who can employ wherever possible - our own local talent. We want to ensure that we give those people an opportunity to grow and be exposed to some of the world-class talent that we are bringing to our Province. That is happening on a regular basis and I am proud to say that last year we saw probably an 80 per cent increase in that activity.

I am also very pleased to say that last year for the first time the percentage of shows or concerts that took place on the stages of the Arts and Culture Centre, for the first time was, in actual fact, in a higher percentage using Newfoundland artists than ever before. Last year some 60 per cent of the shows that were on the stages of our Arts and Cultural Centres either one, involved local talent, or two, were entirely produced by local talent. I think that is a major step forward to ensuring that we are not only promoting the cultural industries for the sake of employment, but that we are also offering a commitment that we are promoting culture in our Province for its own sake - and that is something that we have to continue to do.

Mr. Speaker, one of the most exciting areas for this new department is in the historic resources division. The mandate of that particular division is to protect and preserve the historic resources of our Province and to promote appreciation of these various resources. We also hope and intend to co-ordinate the orderly development of the historic resources in our Province, and do that through study and interpretation. We intend to make sure that the operation of our provincial museum network, our provincial historic sites, make sure that some of the other programs we are involved in, such as archaeology, environmental assessment - and included in that would be our continuing to work with the Newfoundland and Labrador Heritage Foundation. That division, of course, is made up of museums and historic sites and the technical services that we offer not only to various groups across the Province but also that we offer internally, and also on a national basis.

A number of people from the historic resources division have spent sabbaticals from our department working in many parts of Canada, and in particular in the national archives and in the national office of historic resources for Canada, and they have been there for up to, in some cases a year and more because of their technical background and the kind of background that they are able to offer. Mr. Speaker, we are proud of the work they have done and we are also proud of the work that we hope they can achieve for us now that they are back with us and working in our own historic resources department.

In the formation of the Department of Tourism and Culture last year, Mr. Speaker, or in the formation that we are looking to deal with today in this Bill, we also saw the parks division come into its own. The mandate of the parks division in the new Department of Tourism and Culture is to administer, manage, plan and establish the various parks in the Province. We want to also, through our parks division, manage our wilderness and ecological reserves.

Mr. Speaker, in doing that, of course we always have to be very mindful that we must operate and maintain a system of parks throughout the Province that are beginning to once and for all meet the needs of the travelling public. This year sees the completion of some five provincial parks, mainly those that are tied to the gateway of the Province, and by that I mean people coming through Port aux Basques or through Argentia. We now have some five parks that are up to standard in terms of meeting virtually all the needs that any tourist would want - the kinds of needs and services that traditionally we have only seen in the national parks. We call them and refer to them as `comfort stations'. By that I mean there is everything from the hot showers to the washers and dryers so that people can wash their clothes and enjoy the comfort of the park with all the proper facilities. That is also a part of what we are trying to do. We want to be sure that the natural environment is protected and that the physical and natural resources of each park are also protected. We want also, wherever possible to educate and inform our visitors about the parks, about their resources, and we want to initiate and administer the land acquisition proceedings that are required to ensure that not only the parks we have are protected, but that where possible and where needed further land can be acquired and further land can be developed for that particular reason.

So, Mr. Speaker, our parks division is broken down into four particular sections and they are, of course, the administration support, the operations, the information and education, and also the planning and development.

In a nutshell and probably in an overall view that is what the new Department of Tourism and Culture is all about. I have covered virtually all aspects of the new department for those who may not be fully aware of the scope and size of the new department. The only one I really have not given the kind of credibility I should have to are two other branches of the department that I personally am most proud of because of the kind of work they have been able to do over the last number of years. In many cases these two divisions have probably been, I guess, the focal point of being the most aggressive in their own way, and in some cases they have probably been various areas that we have not given the kind of support we should have but are now beginning to do so, one being the provincial archives and the other one being wildlife.

MS. COWAN: Hear, hear!

MR. WALSH: Mr. Speaker, the provincial archives division of the department has a mandate that is very basic and that mandate is to collect, preserve, and to make available all records received from government and also from private resources which have any bearing on the history of the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador regardless of its physical form or the characteristics of those records. I was very please about two to three months ago to have received from Mr. Ian Reid the records and old newspaper clippings as well as the records for the Reid Newfoundland Company, a company that was instrumental in the development of the railway across this Province. In a ceremony at the provincial archives building, at the Colonial Building some months ago, Mr. Reid presented those historic documents to us. I am very pleased to say that they are now in our hands and in the process of being catalogued so that we will have them for posterity sake, but also for those who may one day wish to review the kind of activities that the Reid Newfoundland Company were involved in.

Also, Mr. Speaker, I guess the last division of this new Department of Tourism and Culture is wildlife, and it is the one that is responsible for so many aspects. Now, I know my hon. colleagues on the other side believe that wildlife means Friday night on George Street but that is not correct. The wildlife I am referring to is the wildlife that we have to manage and the resource that we have in our Province. The mandate for our wildlife branch is very simple. It is to maintain the ecosystem upon which wildlife and our people depend, and to make sure that we provide for the humane and sustainable use of that wildlife, and also to help establish and maintain a social environment that is conducive to effective wildlife conservation. Now, I have to tip my hat to this particular branch because in all cases they look at the resource, the wildlife resource as truly a renewable resource and on many occasions we have been asked to increase the hunt, be it for resident or nonresident people. In all cases I must give full marks to the wildlife division for one basic rule that they have and that is, if they intend to err, if they intend to make a mistake, they intend to make it on the side of conservation because, Mr. Speaker, we have to protect our wildlife for the generations to come.

Another structure, Mr. Speaker, for that particular department is very simple and very basic, it consists of the administration, the protection, the research and management and also, Mr. Speaker, the information and education. So, that, Mr. Speaker, is the new Department of Tourism and Culture, one that I am proud to say today managed to introduce and be a part of what is now National Tourism Week, which will take place all of this week. I regret that I do not have a copy of my statement here because if I did I would have an opportunity to recap each and every point but I will not do that, Mr. Speaker, I will save that for my closing remarks.

Therefore, Mr. Speaker, I am proud to stand here and move second reading of a Bill - "An Act Respecting The Department of Tourism and Culture". (Bill No. 3)

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MS. COWAN: Hear, hear! Well done, good department, excellent minister.

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

MR. MANNING: Mr. Speaker, I am pleased today to stand and respond to Bill No. 3 - "An Act Respecting The Department of Tourism and Culture".

Allow me first to say that I am very pleased with the new department and I look forward to a new era for tourism and development for Newfoundland and Labrador under it's guidance. I realize that the economic benefit to Newfoundland and Labrador through tourism is tremendous, creating 12,000 jobs and bringing in revenues of $440 million. I believe that the future will only improve on what we already have.

This week being National Tourism Awareness Week is very important. The theme for this year is, `Tourism and the Environment' and I encourage the minister in his department to work with the Minister of Environment and Lands in her department because I believe that Tourism and the Environment go together, especially here in Newfoundland. As we drive through our districts and around our Province we have a major problem with garbage in Newfoundland and Labrador. I believe that even though we may have guidelines and codes to try to improve on that problem, that enough emphasis is not placed on it, Mr. Speaker, to try to solve the problem.

I am very concerned about my own district and the tourism development in that area over the next couple of years. Several years ago our area developed the terms of reference and selected a company to carry out the study. We are not funded because the department had a larger plan for the Avalon region including the St. John's and Mount Pearl Cities. Mr. Speaker, I understand the regional aspect of tourism and that we all cannot have our own little enclaves and sidelines to try to develop but we must look at the broader picture. I am worried about my area and other parts of rural Newfoundland getting lost in the shuffle especially on the Avalon Peninsula, that we may be lost in the shuffle, Mr. Speaker, with the development of St. John's and Mount Pearl and other areas.

I believe that we have as much or as more to offer as the cities but we all must work together. We must make sure that the little guys do not get lost in the shuffle. My district, and I am sure that I have heard other members allude to their districts, I believe that my district has one of the most important tourism developments in the Province and that is Cape St. Mary's Ecological Reserve. Over the past couple of years we have held several meetings in our area discussing the plans for the ecological reserve at Cape St. Mary's. I express my gratitude to the people who have come out into our area to allow our people and the public to have an input into that development but I ask the Minister of Tourism and Culture and his department, under Parks and Recreation, to make sure that our mainstay, which is our fishery in our area, does not clash with the development at Cape St. Mary's. Some of our fishermen are very concerned that the development at Cape St. Mary's will wipe out one of the most fertile fishing grounds in Newfoundland and that is off Cape St. Mary's. I express deep concern on behalf of those fishermen today even though they know how important Cape St. Mary's is to tourism and to Newfoundland and to our area, but they also realize that the mainstay is the fishery.

I understand, Mr. Speaker, that the only wildlife is not on George Street, as the minister alluded to. I have been on George Street and it is not half as wild as other places in the Province; but I have enjoyed growing up in rural Newfoundland where our wildlife plays a major part of life in our area, and I ask that this part of the department be given its full hand in maintaining the wildlife, especially as it pertains to tourism.

Tourism, Mr. Speaker, is an untapped resource in our Province as far as I am concerned. I believe that the potential that we have is unlimited if it is developed properly and at a slow, easy pace. We all try to jump on the bandwagon when we see other parts of our Province developing faster than we have, such as up on the Viking Trail or down on the Burin Peninsula or wherever, but I understand that we must develop it properly in order to ensure the greatest benefits from it. I ask the minister, through his department, to make sure that as Newfoundland is developed as a tourism area for people to come to, that we make sure that we maintain our culture and our way of life, because everything cannot be lost for the almighty buck, and I am concerned that is what may happen to us in the years ahead.

Mr. Speaker, National Tourism Week, which we are in the middle of now, is very important to Newfoundland and Labrador. I believe that a major national industry such as tourism plays an important role in countries all over the world, and that we are not competing now with the operations on the other side of our Island. We are not competing with some tourism development up in Labrador. We are not competing any more with people who are in Atlantic Canada. We are competing with a global economy, a global tourism market, and I believe that we must strive to make Newfoundland known all over the world and to make it a tourism destination that everybody will want to come and see.

I believe that the government has taken the right initiative in developing the Department of Tourism and Culture. I believe that if the road is taken to take our time and develop it properly that we will benefit in the long term.

I wish the minister well in his new department, and I hope that as tourism critic on this side of the House I will play a part in that development in the best way I can.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

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

MS. VERGE: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

The first news release I issued as an Opposition member back in May of 1989 was a statement faulting the Premier for his Cabinet structure. If you recall, the Premier set up a giant Department of Municipal and Provincial Affairs and put in that department the division of cultural affairs. He assigned responsibility for cultural affairs, the arts council, arts and culture centres, libraries, historic sites, museums, to the Department of Municipal and Provincial Affairs.

The stated rationale of the Premier and First Minister was that culture is a community matter. Cultural affairs, not surprisingly, got lost in that department. Issues such as water and sewer and amalgamation overshadowed the arts. The short-lived Rideout administration had set up a Department of Culture, Historic Resources and Tourism and I recommended that model. Three years later, the Wells Administration essentially made that choice in setting up this new Department of Tourism and Culture. Culture obviously has a relationship to tourism, although culture is something that is basic to our existence and has many dimensions other than tourism. There is a tourism value of our culture, of our arts, but the value far transcends our tourism businesses and the one concern I have, is that, the larger significance of the arts and culture will be lost by combining it with a Department of Tourism and Culture.

It was the government's so-called Strategic Economic Plan which called for the creation of this department and the Premier's action in setting it up was in direct response to the publication of the plan, so that the orientation from the beginning is economic, is the revenue-raising aspect of the arts and culture. To guard against having too narrow a perspective; it is extremely important that the provincial government develop and adopt a culture policy. Early on in the term of this administration, a cultural policy committee was established. It was a committee that had been recommended to the previous government by the Artists Coalition and actually we had an interesting Private Members debate about arts policy in the House of Assembly back in 1988. The motion was made by the Member for St. John's East, Gene Long, and members of all three parties supported it. The Wells administration took that advice and early in its term set up the Arts Policy Committee. The administration appointed Dr. Patrick O'Flaherty, chairperson of the committee, and designated six or eight people from different parts of the Province, some artists, others involved in the arts as supporters to make up the committee.

The committee, in a relativity short period of time, without getting any remuneration whatsoever not even honoraria, produced an excellent document in keeping with the amount of funding the government provided the committee, the publication itself was low budget; I note in marked contrast to the expensive package that the Economic Recovery Commission just put out for the Ambassador Program. This arts policy report was completed and given to the government in the Spring of 1990, more than three years ago. The document has a preface and I would like to quote from that, it is a short statement by artist Pete Soucy: `It appears to have been forgotten that the arts begin with artists. Of what the Province calls a culture budget, only 3.5 per cent actually supports arts productions. There is no mystery to our current problems.' That is artist Pete Soucy.

In the beginning of the document, there is a plea for a provincial government arts policy. I will read the first paragraph: `There is an urgent need for the provincial government to develop and implement an arts policy for Newfoundland and Labrador. It should do this in a decisive and rational way, if it does not do so arts policy will emerge as a result of uncoordinated government action through action by other parties or through no action.' Now, this sentence is underlined: `Arts policy will be made by somebody or other in the years ahead.'

It is important for the artistic community and the community at large that the makers of the policy be the provincial government. This is because it is only the government that can represent all interests in the arts field, practitioners, audiences, administrators, educators, and the taxpayers.'

Mr. Speaker, it has been more than three years since this document was handed the Wells administration and we still have no provincial arts policy. We do not even have any sign that the government is thinking about developing an arts policy. What we have is the strategic economic plan, a misnomer for a manifesto mainly authored by the Premier's chief propaganda officer, the $99,000 a year chief of staff, Edsel Bonnell.

Mr. Speaker, there are some appealing clichés in this strategic economic plan but several of the recommendations are presented with no supporting rationale and I will cite some examples. On Page 50 there is a recommendation, an action item, I think is the bureaucratic jargon. Action Item 69, further develop the fine arts school at Sir Wilfred Grenfell College in Corner Brook as an Atlantic fine arts centre of learning for the development of drama, music, folklore, visual arts, writing and associated disciplines.

Mr. Speaker, nobody at Grenfell College was consulted about that before the document was published and as far as I know nobody has been consulted since. Where this came from is a mystery. The idea may have some merit but it is not meaningful. There is nothing behind it. There was no research done. The people directly involved were not consulted. Action Item 71, transfer administration and control of arts and culture centres to appropriate regional or community organizations. Mr. Speaker, a few years ago the Stephenville Festival made a proposal to the provincial government, to the Wells administration for control of that facility to be transferred to the festival or to a regional agency of which the festival would be a partner. There have been sporadic discussions but basically the Wells administration has not responded.

The O'Flaherty report, the Arts Policy Committee Report, did a critique of arts and culture centres and recommended that as a pilot project the Stephenville Centre, which incidentally is the centre with the lowest audience attendance and box office receipts of all the centres, be transferred to the Stephenville Festival or a regional authority. Now, that recommendation was made three years ago. The Stephenville Festival made a detailed proposal to the government over a year ago, and still no response.

Mr. Speaker, the arts policy report talked about policy being made somehow, perhaps by default, and that is essentially what has happened. Arts and culture centre revenue has plummeted. I do not know if the minister realizes this but for the six arts and culture centres in the Province the government back in 1987-88 realized $1.6 million in revenue, $1.6 million that year. In 1988-89 it went down to $1.3 million, in 1989-90, $1.5 million, in 1991-92, $1 million, and 1992-'93, $900,000. Last year, despite a forecast of $1.1 million, only $900,000 was raised in revenue from arts and culture centres. Now this year, for some reason, the government is predicting $1.1 million again. Why would the government expect to get that much revenue, given the trend toward decreasing revenue? What is wrong?

Mr. Speaker, the government has published a document stating that it is going to transfer administration and control of arts and culture centres to appropriate regional or local authorities. There have been discussions with people in Gander, carried out by the Member for Gander. There have been attempts by people in Stephenville to have a dialogue with the government about a regional authority there assuming control of that centre. There are four other centres located in St. John's, Grand Falls, Corner Brook and Labrador City. The people in those areas have been ignored. In the meantime, the managers and staff of each of those six centres are extremely demoralized. They do not know what is going on. Not only has the administration been very poor in communicating with the public - they have been shoddy in their dealings with their own employees.

So, Mr. Speaker, we have this fancy, slick document called the Strategic Economic Plan, but what does it really mean? The recommendations on the arts and culture were made in a policy void. The provincial government does not have a comprehensive arts policy, despite the plea from the O'Flaherty Arts Policy Committee two years before the Strategic Economic Plan was published. The action items in the plan presumably were dreamed up by bureaucrats in the Economic Recovery Commission, or maybe by the Premier's PR people.

There was a public consultation process that preceded the publication of this document, but somehow action items turned up in the document which were not the subject of presentations or discussion during the public consultation process.

Mr. Speaker, in this year's Budget the government, as one of its major policies, significantly dropped funding for so-called third party organizations. Arts organizations were hard hit. Look at the contrast between what's in the Strategic Economic Plan and what's in this year's Budget. On pages 49 and 50 of the Strategic Economic Plan there is another action item. This sounds good. I was impressed when I read it. It says: Action item 68. Recognize the Western region of Newfoundland and Labrador as a specific cultural destination to maximize the economic benefits from its unique attractions, such as the two UNESCO World Heritage sites - L'Anse-au-Meadows and Gros Morne - located within a few hours drive from each other; the 4,000-year old Maritime Archaic Indian burial ground at Port au Choix; the Basque whaling station at Red Bay; the historic Grenfell mission headquarters in St. Anthony; the Stephenville Festival of the Arts; French heritage festivals in the St. George's - Port au Port region; and other events and attractions of cultural importance.

That sounds good. I would support that. What did the government actually do in its Budget? Slashed support to the Stephenville Festival. The Tourism and Culture grant is being cut in half from $35,500 last year to $17,800 this year. That's adding insult to injury. The Member for Stephenville, the hard-done by Member for Stephenville, I understand privately has been trying to make the Premier and the minister see the error of their ways, but the Festival preparation has begun. One of the worst features of this administration is its incompetence in administering. Even when they have a good idea they bungle the implementation. How can the government rationalize the action item in the Strategic Economic Plan talking about the tourism value of the Stephenville Festival, touting tourism and culture as one of the very few growth opportunities for our economy, and then cutting in half the department's funding to the Stephenville Festival? The two are completely at odds.

Then we see that grants to festivals generally are also being cut in half. Last year it was $150,000, this year it'll be only $75,000. So which festivals will be hit? How do those two developments relate to one another? Well the answer is that there is no co-ordination. This Strategic Economic Plan is not being taken seriously. It is a PR document. It was an election manifesto.

Mr. Speaker, the Newfoundland and Labrador Arts Council is the only provincial source of arms length funding for the arts - for the producers of the arts, for the people Pete Soucy was talking about. The O'Flaherty Arts Policy Committee called for a significant increase in funding for the arts council. The committee recommended that the government increase funding to $750,000 - and remember, that report was presented to the government three years ago. In fact, the government increased the budget from $385,000 to $485,000 a couple of years ago, but kept the amount constant, or froze it last year, and this year is proposing to reduce it slightly. So the amount of funding the government is making available for the creators of the work is still a pittance in relation to what is being paid out for administrators, civil servants, bureaucrats and buildings.

The minister's predecessor - the Minister of Municipal and Provincial Affairs - the late member for Placentia, when he tabled an annual report of the arts council, said in the House of Assembly, and I quote: "Yet the council's budget is still far too small. In each of its grant in sessions for projects seed and sustaining funding, the council is still unable to meet even 50 per cent of the viable and worthy requests that come to them."

Over the past year the provincial government entered into a co-operation agreement with the federal government for funding cultural industries. That agreement promised a boost for arts businesses in the Province, but the terms of reference are narrow and many accomplished artists who are in need of small amounts of assistance have been shut out. Writers have not by and large benefited from that new source of money. So, Mr. Speaker, I would say to the minister that somehow he has to take a leadership role in developing and adopting a provincial culture policy, a provincial arts policy and find a way to concentrate more available public funding for the artists themselves and not have such a disproportionately large amount of what is budgeted for the arts ending up going for buildings and bureaucrats.

Now, Mr. Speaker, even though the value of our cultural infrastructure, of our arts and culture centres has been questioned, when you look at the cost in relation to the benefit, even though we realize that buildings are disproportionately expensive, the minister made an election announcement that for the 500th anniversary of Cabot's discovery of Newfoundland, the government would be seeking to build in St. John's, no discussion of building in another part of the Province, would build in St. John's a giant new arts complex. A large centre for an art gallery, for a museum -

MR. SPEAKER: On a point of order, the hon. the Minister of Works, Services and Transportation.

MR. EFFORD: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Speaker, I am finding it very difficult to hear and I want to hear what the hon. Member for Humber East is saying, there is a terrible lot of noise around here. It is impossible to hear. I am trying and straining -

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: Well, it is unusual to see the hon. member up on a point of order of this nature but certainly we want to indulge him and make sure that he hears every word that the hon. member says. This is a unique event in the history of the House I would think.

The hon. the Member for Humber East.

MS. VERGE: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Well I have noticed that the Member for Port de Grave, the new Minister of Works, Services and Transportation has taken a greater interest in what I have been saying since my question to the Premier last week.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MS. VERGE: There is a good reason for that, there is an old saying; don't get mad, get even. He did talk last week about there being a long road that has no turns and I say, so true, so true. I will be watching for twists and turns in the ministers discharge of his duties, to quote a favourite phrase of the Premier. We will watch how the minister discharges his duties. We will watch where the jobs and the contracts go, don't worry, don't worry.

Now, Mr. Speaker, I was referring to the election promise of the new Minister of Tourism and Culture. Remember this was a campaign in which the Premier was not going to be making any promises but the Minister of Tourism and Culture said, that for the 500th anniversary of Cabot's discovery, which is four short years away, that the government would be seeking a giant new Arts Complex for St. John's. He did not stop for a moment to raise the question of whether this grand building should be in St. John's, whether instead perhaps it should go in Corner Brook, or Gander or some other location, Carbonear perhaps, nor did he acknowledge the critique in the arts policy report about the problems that we have had with buildings.

This Province is buildings rich in the arts. We have six government-owned and operated arts and culture centres, and those Centres are devouring a disproportionate amount of what the government is spending for the arts. Revenue is declining so we have to ask: are those centres being managed properly? Are we getting the kind of return that we should? Is there not merit in the ideas of the Arts Policy Committee for reform? Is there a gain to be derived from adopting the policy committee's recommendation for the Stephenville Centre pilot project?

Mr. Speaker, the minister has talked glibly about the government's intention simply to hand over these centres to regional authorities, without acknowledging that the way they are operated now, there is a huge amount of public subsidization involved. He seems to assume that volunteers will be able to instantly generate thousands and thousands of additional dollars in revenue, so that the centres will become self-sustaining. Well, Mr. Speaker, the figures in the minister's own departmental estimates, show how preposterous that notion is; how can he expect volunteers to do so much better than his own staff are doing? Looking at the minister, I would suggest that he has not even thought about these things -

MR. ROBERTS: Is the hon. member for (inaudible) debate because we do not want to be here tonight.

MS. VERGE: I assure the Government House Leader that we won't be here tonight talking about this Bill. Some of us will be in estimates committee meetings tonight -

MR. ROBERTS: Well then, the hon. member had best call the adjournment. It's about to be 5:00 p.m.

MS. VERGE: I have two more minutes, I'd say to the Government House Leader. I was just about finished in any case.

To sum up, I support the Bill. I agree with the idea of having Culture in a relatively small government department. I was vehemently against the former arrangement in which Cultural Affairs was buried in Municipal and Provincial Affairs. I have some concern about having too narrow a focus on Culture by linking it exclusively with Tourism, with looking at only the immediate short-term economic value of cultural industries, and not seeing the larger significance of culture. But I would be prepared to support this arrangement, provided I saw the government developing a comprehensive culture policy as called for three years ago by their own arts policy committee.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: (Inaudible).

MS. VERGE: Remember, the O'Flaherty Committee was a group of people appointed by the Wells administration who worked freely and voluntarily.

Mr. Speaker, with those remarks, and considering all the interference, I would adjourn the debate.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

It is moved and seconded that the House do now adjourn until tomorrow at 2:00 p.m.

All those in favour of the motion,`aye'.


MR. SPEAKER: Contrary-minded, `nay'.

MR. ROBERTS: Mr. Speaker, I thought -

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

MR. ROBERTS: - the motion was that we adjourn the debate, first of all.


MR. ROBERTS: Okay. Tomorrow we propose to carry on with the legislation. The hon. the member -

MR. SPEAKER: Do we call it 5:00 p.m.?

MR. ROBERTS: - hasn't quite - I don't know if she's finished her speech or not, but she certainly hasn't exhausted her time. It's only the members she's exhausted, not the time.

We propose on Wednesday to ask the House to debate the resolution that stands in the name of -

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible).

MR. ROBERTS: No, I don't care if we stop the clock or not. If the hon. member is going to be pig-headed and keep going, I'm going to carry on just with the business of the day.

As with the agreement -

AN HON. MEMBER: (Inaudible)!

MR. ROBERTS: As with the agreement made here in the House -

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

I point out that if we don't call it 5:00 p.m. we have to return at 7:00 p.m. If that's the hon. the Government House Leader's wish then we'll do so. From a point of technicality we will have to return at 7:00 p.m. So. Unless some....

MR. ROBERTS: Mr. Speaker, I shall be very brief. On Wednesday we propose to ask the House to debate the motion that stands in the name of my friend for Burgeo - Bay d'Espoir. Because we've agreed we'll let the House know on Monday. Tomorrow we'll carry on with the debate on this Bill.

I move that this House do now adjourn until tomorrow at 2:00 p.m.

MR. SPEAKER: I've put the motion previously. The motion was carried.

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