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View Ron McKinnon Profile
Lib. (BC)
I call this meeting to order. Welcome, everyone.
Welcome to meeting 49 of the Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security. We will start by acknowledging that we are meeting on the traditional unceded territory of the Algonquin people.
Today's meeting is taking place in a hybrid format pursuant to the House order of November 25, 2021. Members are attending in person in the room and remotely using the Zoom application.
Pursuant to the order of reference of Thursday, June 23, 2022, the committee resumes consideration of Bill C-21, an act to amend certain acts and to make certain consequential amendments (firearms). Today, the committee starts clause-by-clause consideration.
I'll now welcome the officials who are here with us this afternoon. They are available for questions regarding the bill but will not deliver any opening statements. We have, from the Department of Justice, Marianne Breese, counsel, Public Safety Canada legal services; Paula Clark, counsel, criminal law policy section; and Phaedra Glushek, counsel, criminal law policy section. From the Department of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, we have Rachel Mainville-Dale, acting director general, firearms policy.
I thank you for joining us today.
I will now provide some guidance on the clause-by-clause consideration process for Bill C-21. Actually, I believe the clerk has distributed a document to everyone that gives the outline of how to proceed. We will start with clause 0.1, and we will go forward, but not backwards, typically, right?
Does anybody have any questions regarding the clause-by-clause consideration of this bill?
I'll recognize Raquel in just a minute.
We also have our legislative clerks here to guide us along our way, as well as our regular clerk, who is keeping an eye on us.
Ms. Dancho, go ahead, please.
View Raquel Dancho Profile
CPC (MB)
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
I appreciated very much the one-pager you provided to us—I believe it was today—and I just wanted to confirm what a few things meant.
As you noted, a few of us are new to this process. This is, for example, the first time that I am doing clause-by-clause study for a bill, and I appreciated your mention that we will go through this process deliberately so that everyone understands what we're doing.
I did want to clarify a few things.
You mention in the second paragraph that “[t]he Chair may be called upon to rule amendments inadmissible if they go against the principle of the bill or beyond the scope of the bill”. You also go on to say “or if they offend the financial prerogative of the Crown”.
Can you provide a little more insight into what that might look like, particularly on “if they offend the financial prerogative of the Crown”? Is this saying that if there's any amendment or anything that brings in a financial component, it's out of order?
View Ron McKinnon Profile
Lib. (BC)
Actually, on that one in particular, I believe it's BQ-25 that requests that the Crown institute a “repurchase” plan, and that requires a charge against the treasury and it requires a royal recommendation. We, as a committee, aren't empowered to do that.
In general, if a change is not within the spirit and scope of the bill, it would be out of order as well. That will be determined on an amendment-by-amendment basis.
Okay? Are there any further questions?
Okay. Let's get into it.
The chair calls new clause 0.1. The first amendment we have there is G-1.
View Raquel Dancho Profile
CPC (MB)
I'm sorry. I have one more question.
Now that you've clarified that for me, for one of the amendments—or two of them, actually—I'm a bit concerned about their scope. In particular, I want to say G-4 and G-46. We feel that they're quite significant changes, which they are. That's factual.
Since G-4 is up quite soon—I think it's the fifth or sixth amendment that we would be going through, so I'm assuming we'd be getting there quite quickly—we're wondering, given the substantial change they're proposing, if the government is able to provide more information.
If we could perhaps park those amendments into next week, then we can revisit them once the government has provided more information, in particular on G-4, which in essence proposes a ban on nearly all semi-automatic rifles and shotguns, Mr. Chair—
View Pam Damoff Profile
Lib. (ON)
I have a point of order, Chair.
View Ron McKinnon Profile
Lib. (BC)
Go ahead, Ms. Damoff.
View Pam Damoff Profile
Lib. (ON)
G-4 hasn't even been moved yet. Should we not be going in order? Don't these have to be moved in order to be discussed?
View Ron McKinnon Profile
Lib. (BC)
Yes, when we get to G-4, it has to be ruled as admissible or not.
We can defer dealing with a specific clause of Bill C-21—we can stand it and then come back to it—but we can't do that, as I understand it, with amendments. Amendments change things in the order—
View Raquel Dancho Profile
CPC (MB)
I have a follow-up question.
View Pam Damoff Profile
Lib. (ON)
Sorry. I have a point of order, Chair.
View Ron McKinnon Profile
Lib. (BC)
View Raquel Dancho Profile
CPC (MB)
I have a follow-up question. Thank you.
What I'm asking, though, is that if it's moved, we can't park it until later. That's why I'm bringing this up now, before it is moved.
Again, that amendment would ban almost all semi-automatic shotguns and rifles—
View Pam Damoff Profile
Lib. (ON)
I have a point of order again, Chair.
View Raquel Dancho Profile
CPC (MB)
—so we're asking if the government can provide a little more information so that we can better understand the impact of it before it is moved, and then we can talk about it in more detail.
View Ron McKinnon Profile
Lib. (BC)
It will be when that time comes.
Go ahead on your point of order.
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