Madam Speaker, the following questions will be answered today: Nos. 523, 526 and 527.
Question No. 523—Mr. Michael Kram
With regard to the Green and Inclusive Community Buildings program, of the $1.5 billion in funding to be delivered, since the program’s announcement on April 14, 2021: (a) what are the details of the projects approved to date, including the (i) name of each project approved, (ii) dollar amount of funds distributed to each project, (iii) name of each recipient of funding, (iv) location of each project by city, town or village, (v) province or territory; (b) what are the criteria and metrics used to determine which projects are eligible for funding; and (c) what are the criteria and metrics used to determine which projects receive funds, if different from (b)?Ms. Jennifer O’Connell (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities, Lib.)
Mr. Speaker, with regard to the green and inclusive community buildings program, of the $1.5 billion in funding to be delivered, since the program’s announcement on April 14, 2021, members should please note that Infrastructure Canada provides funding for public infrastructure projects through various programs to provinces, territories, municipalities and other recipients. This response is based on federal funding commitments and does not necessarily reflect when project spending occurred.
Members may refer to the attached annex for information with regard to projects approved to date.
With respect to part (b), all applications are reviewed for eligibility against the following criteria: The applicant must be an eligible applicant type; the applicant must be an eligible applicant type; the building/asset must be an eligible asset type; he building/asset must be a non-commercial community-oriented structure or space that provides open, available and accessible community services to the public; the applicant must have authority over the asset either as the asset owner or by having secured an agreement with the asset owner to carry out the project; the project must be implemented no earlier than April 1, 2021, and no later than March 31, 2026; for retrofits only, the applicant must submit their building’s structural information, energy profile and greenhouse gas, GHG, emissions using the RETScreen Expert software; for retrofits only, the project must not lead to an increase in GHG emissions in the building’s operation; impacts of climate change have been assessed and considered for the project; the applicant must commit to securing the necessary capital to proceed if approved for federal funding; the applicant must provide all necessary data and supporting documents; the applicant must attest to the manner in which the project will meet relevant building and construction laws and regulations, including completion or planned completion of such environmental assessment and consultation as may be required by federal and provincial/territorial governments; and the applicant must attest to the manner in which the project will align to the building standards and codes that apply to the jurisdiction of the existing building, as applicable.
With respect to part (c), these are the criteria used to assess and evaluate applications. For retrofits, the following criteria apply:
Construction start date: Projects that begin sooner will receive a higher score. Located in and demonstrates the ability to serve one or more communities with high needs: Projects that provide greater benefits to high need communities will receive a higher score. Increased accessibility: Where applicable, projects that demonstrate an intention to exceed (rather than meet) the highest standards for accessibility will receive a higher score. GHG reductions: Projects that demonstrate the ability to achieve greater GHG emission reductions relative to the building’s baseline will receive a higher score. Energy savings: Projects that will achieve at least 25% in energy efficiency improvements compared to the building’s baseline energy consumption, as calculated with the RETScreen Expert software, will receive a higher score and are more likely to be selected for funding; in select cases, projects with lower energy efficiency improvements could be considered and selected for funding. Climate resiliency and best practices adoption: Projects that demonstrate strong climate resiliency considerations and measures will receive a higher score; projects that provide reasonable and accurate detail for why climate resiliency is not relevant to their project will not be subject to this criterion and will be assessed relative to other project merits. Confidence in delivery/risk: Projects that demonstrate strong risk assessment and mitigation measures will receive a higher score.
Continuous intake retrofit projects with total eligible project costs between $100,000 and $2,999,999 are evaluated on a continuous basis, with projects needing to meet or exceed a minimum point threshold in order to be granted funding. Retrofit projects with total eligible project costs between $3,000,000 and $25,000,000 are evaluated on a competitive basis, with projects being scored and ranked against one another.
For new builds, the following criteria apply: Construction start date: Projects that begin sooner will receive a higher score. Located in and demonstrates the ability to serve one or more communities with high needs: Projects that provide greater benefits to high needs communities will receive a higher score. Increased accessibility. Projects that demonstrate an intention to exceed (rather than meet) the highest standards for accessibility will receive a higher score. Zero-carbon design standard: Projects that are designed to meet net-zero carbon performance without the need for a transition plan will be scored higher; projects that are exempted from this standard will not be subject to this criterion and will be assessed relative to other project design merits. Climate resiliency and best practices adoption: Projects that demonstrate strong climate resiliency considerations and measures will be scored higher; projects that provide reasonable and accurate detail for why climate resiliency is not relevant to their project will not be subject to this criterion and will be assessed relative to other project merits. Confidence in delivery/risk: Projects that demonstrate a strong risk assessment and mitigation measures will be scored higher.
All new build projects are evaluated on a competitive basis, with projects being scored and ranked against one another.
All of the above information can be found in the green and inclusive community buildings applicant guide at https://www.infrastructure.gc.ca/alt-format/pdf/gicb-bcvi/GICB-Applicant-Guide-BCVI-Guide-du-demandeur-EN.pdfQuestion No. 526—Ms. Heather McPherson
With regard to orders issued under section 4(1)(b) of the Special Economic Measures Act and section 4(1)(b) of the Justice for Victims of Corrupt Foreign Officials Act, broken down by year since 2014, month since 2022 and action (freeze, seize or sequestrate): (a) how many times have these orders been used; (b) how many properties have been frozen, seized or sequestrated as a result from these orders; and (c) what is the assessed value of properties frozen, seized or sequestrated?Hon. Robert Oliphant (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)
Mr. Speaker, with regard to (a), (b) and (c), Canada’s sanctions regime prohibits persons in Canada and Canadians abroad from engaging in activities related to the property of sanctioned persons, including the provision of financial or related services. As a result, the assets of sanctioned persons are effectively frozen. They cannot be sold and they cannot be transferred, making transactions involving these assets prohibited.
Together with like-minded international partners, the Government of Canada evaluates potential targets for sanctions that would have the greatest impact on the Russian government and put maximum pressure on President Putin.
Through budget 2022, the Government of Canada is proposing amendments to the Special Economic Measures Act and the Justice for Victims of Corrupt Foreign Officials Act that will allow courts to order seized or restrained property belonging to sanctioned persons, including Russian elites, oligarchs and their proxies, to be forfeited to the Crown.
The proceeds generated from forfeited assets may be used for the reconstruction of a foreign state adversely affected by grave breaches of international peace and security, the restoration of international peace and security, and the compensation of victims affected by grave breaches of international peace and security, gross and systematic human rights violations or acts of significant corruption.
The management and disposal of assets are expected to be handled by the Minister of Public Services and Procurement Canada under the Seized Property Management Act. These changes will make Canada’s sanctions regime a leader in the G7.
The Government of Canada has also recently proposed legislation that would render foreign nationals sanctioned in response to Russian aggression in Ukraine inadmissible to Canada. These changes would allow Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada officials to deny temporary visas overseas. They would also allow the Canada Border Services Agency to deny entry to, and remove, individuals subjected to sanctions.
Federally regulated financial institutions, or FRFIs, are regulated and supervised by Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions, OSFI. This includes foreign banks operating in Canada. OSFI expects FRFIs to comply with all relevant Canadian sanctions legislation and to ensure they have adequate procedures in place to comply on an ongoing basis with existing laws and any future laws.
Disclosures on the existence of sanctioned assets are made by reporting entities, such as Canadian financial institutions, to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the RCMP.
The approach adopted by the Government of Canada has been to use sanctions authorities under section 4(1)(a) of both the Special Economic Measures Act, or SEMA, and the Justice for Victims of Corrupt Foreign Officials Act, or JVCFOA, to prohibit certain activities through regulations made under the relevant acts.Question No. 527—Mr. Chris Lewis
With regard to delays in the processing of applications for Temporary Foreign Workers (TFW): (a) what is the current processing time; (b) how many applications are still awaiting a decision or are still being processed as of April 29, 2022; (c) what are the government’s specific targets, including the related timelines, for reducing the processing times; (d) what is the breakdown of (a) and (b) by sector and occupation; (e) how many government employees or full-time equivalents were assigned to processing TFW applications as of (i) January 1, 2020, (ii) April 29, 2022; and (f) how many employees who process TFW applications were on leave as of April 29, 2022, due to not meeting the government’s vaccine attestation requirements?Mr. Irek Kusmierczyk (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Lib.)
Mr. Speaker, with regard to (a), as of April 30, 2022, the current monthly average processing time for employers seeking labour market impact assessments, or LMIAs, from Service Canada to support the entry of temporary foreign workers, TFWs, was 37 business days. The processing times vary between program streams and by processing regions.
With regard to (b), as of April 29, 2022, 11,044 LMIA applications from 7,421 employers are awaiting a decision.
With regard to (c), to address the high program demand—which, as a reference, is 49% higher than forecast for April 2022--reduce the inventory and improve processing times, the program has increased its resources and since January has doubled its productivity, with approximately 2,000 files processed per week. As a result of these efforts, the national average processing time went from 44 business days in February 2022 to 37 business days in April 2022. The department has seen continuous improvement, largely due to the implementation of processing improvements, including streamlining and simplification measures.
With regard to (d), average processing times of the top 10 sectors of LMIA applications assessed in April 2022 were as follows: Full-service restaurants and limited-service eating places, 35 business days; computer services and related services, 23 business days; private households, 25 business days; cattle ranching and farming, 33 business days; general freight trucking, 66 business days; vegetable and melon farming, 24 business days; fruit and tree nut farming, 21 business days; residential building construction, 40 business days; building finishing contractors, 32 business days; services to buildings and dwellings, 49 business days.
Average processing times of the top 10 occupations of LMIA applications assessed in April 2022 were as follows: General farm workers, 28 business days; cooks, 34 business days; food service supervisors, 35 business days; home child care providers, 25 business days; transportation truck drivers, 80 business days; retail sales supervisors, 37 business days; administrative assistants, 34 business days; software engineers and designers, 15 business days; computer programmers and interactive media developers, 19 business days; carpenters, 39 business days.
Sectors, as based on the North American industry classification system, or NAICS, and occupations, as based on the national occupational classification, or NOC, are only entered into the LMIA system when the assessment has started or a decision has been rendered. Therefore, as of April 29, 2022, only 25% of all current applications awaiting a decision have a sector and occupation assigned to them. Processing times listed for the sectors and occupations just mentioned are for completed files.
With regard to (e), the program had approximately 400 full-time equivalent, FTE, employees assigned to it in 2020. By the end of April 2022, program capacity exceeded 500 FTEs, and 60 additional bilingual resources are expected to be hired in the short term.
With regard to (f), information on employees on leave without pay by program is not available.
Madam Speaker, if the government's response to Questions Nos. 521, 522, 524 and 525 could be made orders for return, these returns would be tabled immediately.
Some hon. members: Agreed.
Question No. 521—Mr. Len Webber
With regard to electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure in Canada: (a) what does the government project to be the number of registered EVs in Canada for each of the next 10 years for each province and territory; (b) what is the projected infrastructure investment in electrical grids in each province and territory required to meet this demand; (c) what is the projected number of public charging stations in each province and territory over each of the next 10 years; (d) how much (i) has the government contributed to EV infrastructure in each of the past five years in each province and territory, (ii) is the government projecting to contribute in each of the next 10 years in each province and territory; and (e) what federal standards are being considered for EV charging infrastructure?
(Return tabled)Question No. 522—Mr. Len Webber
With regard to correspondence received by ministers: (a) how many pieces of correspondence (both mail and email) have been received by each minister in each of the past four years (2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021); (b) for each of the past four years, (i) what is the average response time for a final response to correspondence received from members of Parliament, (ii) what is the average response time for a final response to correspondence received from non-members of Parliament, (iii) when does the oldest unresolved correspondence file date back to, (iv) how many pieces of correspondence did not receive a response; (c) what are the targeted service standards; (d) how many pieces of correspondence were redirected to another individual for a final response; and (e) for each minister’s correspondence unit, (i) what is the total annual budget, (ii) how many employees are assigned to handle ministerial correspondence, (iii) what other metrics are recorded and tracked by the correspondence units?
(Return tabled)Question No. 524—Mr. Terry Dowdall
With regard to contracts provided to consultants related to the processing of requests made under the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act (ATIP), signed since January 1, 2020: (a) what are the details of all such contracts, including for each the (i) vendor, (ii) value, (iii) date, (iv) description of services provided, (v) start and end dates of the contract, (vi) number of ATIPs processed by the consulting vendor, (vii) file number, if known; and (b) of the ATIP requests received since January 1, 2020, and broken down by month, how many have been assigned to (i) government employees, (ii) consultants for processing?
(Return tabled)Question No. 525—Mr. John Nater
With regard to Canadian military equipment and other government assets left behind in Afghanistan following the Taliban takeover in 2021: (a) what is the total estimated value of the equipment left behind; and (b) what is the breakdown of the equipment left behind, including the (i) description, (ii) volume, (iii) value of each item left behind?
Madam Speaker, I ask that the remaining questions be allowed to stand.
Some hon. members: Agreed.