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MINUTES OF PROCEEDINGS

Meeting No. 55

Tuesday, May 9, 2000

The Standing Committee on Transport met at 9:10 a.m. this day, in Room 705, La Promenade Building, the Chair, Stan Keyes, presiding.

Members of the Committee present: Gérard Asselin, Roy Bailey, Murray Calder, Bill Casey, Stan Dromisky, Claude Drouin, Joe Fontana, Charles Hubbard, Ovid Jackson, Stan Keyes, Val Meredith, Lou Sekora.

Acting Member present: Tony Valeri for Joe Comuzzi.

In attendance: From Legislative Services: Jacques Lahaie and Richard Dupuis, Legislative Clerks. From the Library of Parliament: John Christopher and June Dewetering, Researchers.

Witnesses: From the Transport Canada: Valérie Dufour, Director General, Air Policy and Programs; Jacques E. Pigeon, General Counsel, Legal Services.

Pursuant to its Order of Reference of Tuesday, February 29, 2000, the Committee resumed consideration of Bill C-26, An Act to amend the Canada Transportation Act, the Competition Act, the Competition Tribunal Act and the Air Canada Public Participation Act and to amend another Act in consequence (See Minutes of Proceedings, Tuesday, April 4, 2000 , Meeting No. 42).

The Committee resumed Clause-by-Clause consideration of the Bill.

On Clause 6,

Bill Casey moved, -- That Bill C-26, in Clause 6, be amended by adding after line 40 on page 11 the following:

"67.3 (1) The Governor in Council shall appoint a qualified person as the Passenger's Ombudsperson after approval of the appointment by resolution of the Senate and House of Commons.

(2) Subject to this section, the Passenger's Ombudsperson holds office during good behaviour for a term of seven years, but may be removed by the Governor in Council at any time on address of the Senate and House of Commons.

(3) The Passenger's Ombudsperson shall be paid the remuneration fixed by the Governor in Council.

67.4 (1) The expenses incurred by or in connection with the operation of the Office of the Passenger's Ombudsperson shall not be paid out of public money.

(2) Each licensee shall contribute the prescribed amount to the Office of the Passenger's Ombudsperson for the purposes of defraying the expenses incurred by it or in connection with its operation.

67.5 (1) The Passenger's Ombudsperson may investigate any decision or recommendation made or any act done or omitted by the Agency in the course of its administration of this Part, or by a licensee in the course of its operations, and affecting any person or body of persons in his, her or its personal capacity.

(2) The Passenger's Ombudsperson shall carry out an investigation on a complaint made by any person affected, at the request of a member of Parliament to whom a complaint is made by any person affected, or of the Ombudsperson's own motion.

67.6 Upon completion of an investigation the Passenger's Ombudsperson shall report his or her opinion, and the reasons therefor, to the person affected, the member of Parliament, the Agency or the licensee, as the case may be, and make any recommendation that the Ombudsperson thinks fit, including a recommendation:
(a) that the omission be rectified;
(b) that a decision or recommendation be cancelled or varied;
(c) that any practice on which the decision, recommendation, act or omission was based should be altered;
(d) that any law on which the decision, recommendation, act or omission was based should be reconsidered;
(e) that reasons should be given for the decision or recommendation, or
(f) that any other steps, including the payment of money to the affected person, be taken.

67.7 The Governor in Council may make regulations
(a) prescribing the manner in which complaints may be made to the Passenger's Ombudsperson;
(b) prescribing the procedure to be followed by the Passenger's Ombudsperson in investigating a complaint;
(c) prescribing the method of calculating the amount to be paid by each licensee to the Office of the Passenger's Ombudsperson and the method of payment;
(d) generally for carrying out the purposes and provisions of sections 67.3 to 67.6.

67.8 The Ombudsperson shall, within three months after the termination of each financial year, submit an annual report to Parliament on the activities of the office during that financial year. The report shall be made by being transmitted to the Speaker of the Senate and to the Speaker of the House of Commons for tabling in those Houses."

After debate and by unanimous consent, Mr. Casey was allowed to withdraw his amendment.

Clause 6 carried.

On New Clause 7.1

Murray Calder moved, -- That Bill C-26 be amended by adding after line 19 on page 12 the following:

"7.1 The Act is amended by adding the following after section 85:

Air Travel Complaints Commissioner

85.1 (1) The Minister may designate a temporary member to act as the Air Travel Complaints Commissioner for the purposes of this section.

(2) A person may file in writing with the Air Travel Complaints Commissioner a complaint against a licensee in respect of its air service if the person made the complaint to the licensee and the complaint was not resolved to the person's satisfaction.

(3) The Commissioner, or a person authorized to act on the Commissioner's behalf, shall review and attempt to resolve every complaint filed under subsection (2) and may, if appropriate, mediate or arrange for the mediation of a complaint filed under that subsection.

(4) On request by the Commissioner or a person authorized to act on the Commissioner's behalf, a person shall produce for examination by the Commissioner any document, record or thing that is in the possession or under the control of the person and is, in the opinion of the Commissioner, relevant to a complaint.

(5) The Commissioner or a person authorized to act on the Commissioner's behalf may provide to the parties a report that outlines their positions and any settlement that they reached.

(6) The Commissioner shall, at least semi-annually, prepare a report setting out the number and nature of complaints filed under subsection (2), including the names of the licensees against whom the complaints were made and describing the manner in which they were dealt with and any systemic problems observed. The Agency shall include the Commissioner's reports in its annual report."

After debate, it was agreed, -- That the amendment be amended in sub-paragraph (1) by replacing the word "may" with the word "shall".

Joe Fontana moved, -- That the amendment be further amended in sub-paragraph (2) by replacing the word "may" with the word "shall".

The question being put on the sub-amendment, it was agreed to.

Val Meredith moved, -- That the amendment be further amended in sub-paragraph (5) by replacing the word "may" with the word "shall".

The question being put on the sub-amendment, it was agreed to.

Joe Fontana moved, -- That the amendment be further amended in sub-paragraph (6) by adding after the word "report" the following:

"to the Governor-in-Council through the Minister"

The question being put on the sub-amendment, it was agreed to.

Bill Casey moved, -- That the amendment be further amended by adding after sub-paragraph (6) the following:

"(7) upon completion of an investigation, the passenger ombudsman may take any recommendation that the ombudsman sees fit, including a recommendation that any law on which the decision, recommendation, act or omission was based should be reconsidered."

The question being put on the sub-amendment, it was negatived.

After debate, New Clause 7.1, as amended, carried.

Clause 8 carried.

By unanimous consent, Clause 13 was allowed to stand.

On Clause 15,

Claude Drouin moved, -- That Bill C-26, in Clause 15, be amended by replacing line 39 on page 18 with the following:

"setting aside the temporary order."

The question being put on the amendment, it was agreed to.

Clause 15, as amended, carried.

On Clause 17,

Val Meredith moved, -- That Bill C-26, in Clause 17, be amended by deleting lines 26 to 38 on page 20.

After debate, the question being put on the amendment, it was negatived on division.

Val Meredith moved, -- That Bill C-26, in Clause 17, be amended by replacing lines 7 to 9 on page 21 with the following:

"than 49% of the votes that may ordinarily be"

After debate, the question being put on the amendment, it was negatived on division.

Val Meredith moved, -- That Bill C-26, in Clause 17, be amended by replacing lines 20 to 23 on page 21 with the following:

"votes to not more than 49% of the total number of votes"

After debate, the question being put on the amendment, it was negatived on division.

Joe Fontana moved, -- That Bill C-26, in Clause 17, be amended by replacing on line 34 on page 20 the figure "15%" with the figure "20%".

After debate, the question being put on the amendment, it was negatived.

Clause 17 carried on division.

On Clause 18,

Stan Dromisky moved, -- That Bill C-26, in Clause 18, be amended by replacing, in the English version, line 29 on page 22 with the following:

"incidental services, provided or made available by a subsid-"

The question being put on the amendment, it was agreed to.

Stan Dromisky moved, -- That Bill C-26, in Clause 18, be amended by replacing lines 40 and 41 on page 22 with the following:

"subsection comes into force, or in respect of Canadian Airlines International Ltd. or Canadian Regional Airlines Ltd. if that airline becomes a subsidiary of the Corporation before that subsection comes into force, three years after the person or airline becomes a subsidiary."

The question being put on the amendment, it was agreed to.

Stan Dromisky moved, -- That Bill C-26, in Clause 18, be amended by adding after line 44 on page 23 the following:

"incidental services" include, in respect of a subsidiary referred to in subsection (2) or (7),

(a) ticketing and reservation services;

(b) information, including notices and announcements, that it publishes or causes to be published to inform its customers in respect of its routes or tariffs;

(c) services provided or made available to customers at an airport, including the control of passengers embarking and disembarking aircraft, announcements directed at customers and counter services; and

(d) services related to baggage or freight claims and client relations."

The question being put on the amendment, it was agreed to.

After debate, Clause 18, as amended, carried.

Clause 19 carried.

At 11:09 a.m., the sitting was suspended.

At 11:15 a.m., the sitting resumed.

At 11:19 a.m., the Committee adjourned to the call of the Chair.

 

 

 

Guyanne L. Desforges
Jacques Lahaie
Clerks of the Committee