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View Geoff Regan Profile
Lib. (NS)

Question No. 1314--
Mr. Robert Kitchen:
With regard to the statement by the Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons on November 2, 2017, that “Never before in the history of Canada have we seen a redistribution of Canada's wealth to the middle class and those aspiring to become a part of it”: does the government consider this statement to be accurate and, if so, what specific information does the government have to back up this statement?
Response
Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the comments by the Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons were in reference to the government’s efforts to support Canada’s middle class and those working hard to join it and to ensure the wealthy pay their fair share of taxes. Since coming to office, the government has helped middle-class Canadians by reducing the rate on the second personal income tax bracket from 22% to 20.5%, while asking the wealthiest Canadians to pay a bit more through the introduction of a new top income bracket of 33%. The government has also introduced the Canada child benefit, which is providing increased benefits to nine out of 10 families with children, and which is better targeted to those who need it most compared to the previous system of child benefits. In addition, the government is taking steps to address tax advantages that disproportionately benefit the wealthy.
The government is also taking steps to expand opportunities for individuals seeking to join the middle class. Investments in areas such as early learning, child care, and affordable housing will provide a foundation for upward mobility to those who are currently struggling with these needs, while investments in skills training will provide greater opportunities for workers to upgrade their skills and attain better-paying jobs.
Moreover, the government is taking actions to strengthen the position of middle-class workers in the workplace. The government has introduced legislation to restore a fair and balanced approach to organized labour and is working on further legislative changes and other policy options to address emerging issues in the labour market, such as unpaid internships and a fair wages policy for businesses that have dealings with the federal government.
The government supports Canada’s middle class and is working to deliver a more balanced and fair economy where growth is shared by all Canadians and does not just benefit the wealthy.

Question No. 1320--
Mr. Len Webber:
With regard to the seven Books of Remembrance that lie in the Memorial Chamber in the Peace Tower on Parliament Hill: (a) what is the government going to do to ensure uninterrupted public access to the Books during renovations on the Centre Block; (b) when will these changes take place; and (c) until what date will the alternate arrangements be in place?
Response
Hon. Seamus O'Regan (Minister of Veterans Affairs, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the Books of Remembrance commemorate the lives of more than 118,000 Canadians who have made the ultimate sacrifice while serving Canada in uniform. During the renovation of the Centre Block, the Books of Remembrance will be located in phase one of the Visitor Welcome Centre in a suitably designed space where public viewing and the daily page-turning ceremony will continue.
It is currently unknown how long the Books of Remembrance will remain in phase one of the Visitor Welcome Centre as the Centre Block renovation is in the early stages of its execution and a schedule is still in development.

Question No. 1321--
Mr. Len Webber:
With regard to the Peace Tower Carillon on Parliament Hill: (a) what is going to be done to ensure the weekday noon-time concert will continue to play while renovations on the Centre Block take place; (b) when will any changes take effect; and (c) until what date will the alternate arrangements be in place?
Response
Mr. Steven MacKinnon (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Services and Procurement, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the Parliament Buildings belong to all Canadians. Part of our responsibility is to engage them on the projects taking place here on Parliament Hill.
The government is considering several ways to ensure a positive visitor experience on Parliament Hill during this time.
Public Services and Procurement Canada, PSPC, is working with the House of Commons to ensure live performances by the Dominion Carillonneur continue for as long as possible during the renovation of the Peace Tower. The project is still in the early stages. PSPC is currently carrying out a detailed investigation that is critical to defining the scope, budget, and schedule of the renovations. At this point, no determination has been made about the timing of any potential impacts on the carillon or on alternative arrangements.

Question No. 1324--
Mr. Robert Aubin:
With regard to the statement by the Minister of Transport in the House of Commons on October 30, 2017, that “We are not getting rid of the function of checking the check pilots of the airlines”: (a) on what evidence or documents is the Minister’s statement based; (b) what are the details of the evidence or documents in (a); (c) has the Minister read the document entitled “Risk Assessment--Oversight of the ACP/AQP Evaluator Programs (Ottawa, ON; 6-10 February 2017) Conventional Tool”; (d) if the answer to (c) is in the affirmative, when did the Minister read this document; (e) did the Minister approve the policy as described in the document in (c); (f) does the Minister intend to overturn the decision made by the Civil Aviation Directorate and National Operations at Transport Canada to delegate responsibility for the evaluation of company check pilots to the airlines as of April 1, 2018; (g) when was the Minister informed that Transport Canada had decided to delegate responsibility for the evaluation of company check pilots to the airlines; (h) did the Minister speak to the Director of National Operations at Transport Canada about this statement; (i) if the answer to (h) is affirmative, what are the details of this conversation; (j) what other member countries of the International Civil Aviation Organization have transferred responsibility for evaluating company check pilots to the airlines; (k) has Transport Canada assessed the internal need for aviation safety inspectors; (l) if the answer to (k) is affirmative, what is the result of the department’s assessment; and (m) what is the impact of this need in terms of inspectors on the new policy adopted by Transport Canada?
Response
Hon. Marc Garneau (Minister of Transport, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the safety and security of Canadians is a top priority for the Government of Canada.
With respect to the statement by the Minister of Transport in the House of Commons on October 30, 2017, that, “We are not getting rid of the function of checking the check pilots of the airlines”, and with regard to parts (a) to (i), Transport Canada has a rigorous regulatory program in place and conducts oversight activities to verify industry compliance. Under the Canadian Aviation Regulations, it is industry’s responsibility to comply with all safety regulations and to operate safely.
On behalf of the minister, Transport Canada delegates the responsibility of conducting pilot proficiency checks of industry ?pilots by experienced and qualified pilots. For over 25 years, delegates have been monitoring industry pilots. Similar to our oversight regime, the department inspects based on a series of risk criteria. If a risk is identified with the company’s approved check pilots or with the company’s compliance with any regulations, the department will not hesitate to take action in the interest of aviation safety.
With regard to parts (j) to (m), the program is in compliance with the International Civil Aviation Organization, ICAO, standards and aligns with other civil aviation authorities such as the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, whose delegates are known as “check airmen”. The department’s use of ministerial delegates is also well established for aircraft certification, pilot testing of various licences, and pilot written exams.
Transport Canada requires that professional pilots receive a pilot proficiency check, PPC, to confirm and test skills and proficiency in dealing with aircraft standard operations and emergency procedures. The requirements and standards for these check rides meet or exceed ICAO requirements.
A pilot proficiency check is conducted every six months, year, or two years depending on the type of operation, size, and complexity of aircraft.
The department is aware that the United Kingdom Civil Aviation Authority has extended similar privileges to its senior examiners.
Transport Canada continually analyzes its workforce, and focuses on recruitment and retention of staff to ensure it has the necessary number of oversight personnel with the required skills and competencies to plan and conduct oversight activities. As in any workplace, total workforce can fluctuate at any given time due to changing demographics, promotions, retirements, and other factors.
The new policy will not impact inspectors. The department is focusing surveillance on areas of greater risk based on data. When an area is deemed a low risk, resources are reallocated to areas identified as higher risk.

Question No. 1326--
Ms. Elizabeth May:
With regard to the drafting of Bill C-45, the Cannabis Act: (a) did the government study the environmental impacts of the Canadian cannabis industry and consider this in the drafting of legislation; (b) if the answer in (a) is negative, why not; and (c) if the answer in (a) is affirmative, what are the details of any correspondence, reports, or documents related to the subject of the sustainability of the legislation contained in Bill C-45, including (i) date, (ii) sender, (iii) recipients, (iv) title, (v) summary of contents?
Response
Mr. Bill Blair (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada and to the Minister of Health, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, prior to the introduction of Bill C-45, Health Canada carried out the mandatory assessment of environmental impacts, strategic environmental analysis, in the context of developing a federal legal framework to legalize, strictly regulate, and restrict cannabis.
Under the proposed framework, licence-holders would be subject to federal and provincial/territorial statutes and regulations with respect to environmental protection. These laws and regulations establish clear rules to limit potential negative environmental impacts due to commercial cultivation and manufacturing, such as poor air quality, harmful effects of unauthorized pesticide use, water contamination, and improper use and disposal of harmful substances.
A key objective of the framework set out in Bill C-45 is to displace the illegal market. The current illicit cannabis market relies on unregulated cultivation and manufacturing practices, for example, potential mishandling of chemicals, including unauthorized pesticide use, or improper disposal and release of harmful substances, which may have detrimental effects on the environment. Reducing illegal cannabis production can be expected to lead to a decrease in negative environmental impacts due to these unregulated practices.
Consideration of environmental impacts will form a part of the regulatory impact analysis statement that will be required prior to the publication of federal regulations, subject to parliamentary approval of Bill C-45 by Parliament.

Question No. 1328--
Mr. Mark Warawa:
With regard to the so-called “Mandate Letter Tracker” on the Privy Council Office website: (a) is any third-party non-government analysis conducted to ensure that the claims made on the website are not Liberal Party propaganda; (b) if the answer to (a) is affirmative, what are the details of any such contracts, including (i) person who conducted the analysis, (ii) vendor, (iii) amount, (iv) date and duration of contract, (v) file number; (c) what are the costs associated with setting up the website, broken down by individual item; and (d) what are the anticipated ongoing costs of maintaining the website, broken down by individual item?
Response
Mr. Peter Schiefke (Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister (Youth), Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with regard to the so-called “mandate letter tracker” on the Privy Council Office, PCO, website, the response from PCO is as follows:
In response to (a), no. The Mandate Letter Tracker was produced by the results and delivery unit, RDU, in PCO with support from all federal government departments.
In response to (b), this is not applicable.
In response to (c), the development of the website was completed with existing Government of Canada financial resources. Ongoing maintenance of the website will also rely on existing financial resources. The tracking of mandate letter commitments and priorities is one of many roles and responsibilities of the results and delivery unit in PCO. These roles also encompass efforts to monitor delivery, address implementation obstacles to key priorities, and report on progress to the Prime Minister. The unit also facilitates the work of the government by developing tools, guidance, and learning activities on implementing an outcome-focused approach.

Question No. 1330--
Mr. Mark Warawa :
With regard to the Fall Economic Statement tabled by the Finance Minister on October 24, 2017: for each investment horizon in chart 3.8 (10 years, 20 years, 30 years), how much total tax would be paid in a personal savings account, versus in a private corporation, for the entire life cycle of the investment, including taxes paid on the final distribution to the corporate owner of all funds?
Response
Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, as chart 3.8 of the 2017 fall economic statement illustrates, a high-income individual can realize significant tax advantages from holding passive investments in his or her corporation. By benefiting from a lower rate of tax on business income, the amount of after-tax income that can be invested passively in a private corporation is larger than what can be invested had the income been distributed as salary or dividends. As shown in the example, a corporate owner is able to earn after-tax interest income that is about 1.8 times more than he or she could realize at the personal level after 10 years, after distribution. After 30 years, the additional after-tax interest income from saving in a corporation is more than double what they could have obtained by saving at the personal level. This implies that investments made inside a private corporation are effectively subject to a lower implicit tax rate than investments made inside personal savings accounts.

Question No. 1333--
Mr. Tom Kmiec:
With regard to Canada’s participation in the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and testimony at the Standing Committee on Finance on November 7, 2017, by the Director, International Finance and Development Division, International Trade and Finance Branch, of the Department of Finance: (a) on how many of the AIIB’s 21 approved projects (Philippines: Metro Manila Flood Management Project, Asia: IFC Emerging Asia Fund, India: Transmission System Strengthening Project, Gujarat Rural Roads Project, India Infrastructure Fund and Andhra Pradesh 24x7--Power For All, Egypt: Round II Solar PV Feed-in Tariffs Program, Tajikistan: Nurek Hydropower Rehabilitation Project--Phase I and Dushanbe-Uzbekistan Border Road Improvement Project, Georgia: Batumi Bypass Road Project, Bangladesh: Natural Gas Infrastructure and Efficiency Improvement Project and Distribution System Upgrade and Expansion Project, Indonesia: Dam Operational Improvement and Safety Project Phase II, Regional Infrastructure Development Fund Project and National Slum Upgrading Project, Azerbaijan: Trans Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline Project to be co-financed with the World Bank, Oman: Duqm Port Commercial Terminal and Operational Zone Development Project and Railway System Preparation Project, Myanmar: Myingyan Power Plant Project, Pakistan: Tarbela 5 Hydropower Extension Project and National Motorway M-4 Project) as of November 9, 2017, did the government conduct its own environmental and human rights review as part of its project assessment; (b) on how many of the AIIB’s nine proposed projects (China: Beijing Air Quality Improvement and Coal Replacement Project, Oman: Broadband Infrastructure Project, Sri Lanka: Climate Resilience Improvement Project–Phase II, India: Bangalore Metro Rail Project–Line R6, National Investment and Infrastructure Fund, Madhya Pradesh Rural Connectivity Project, Amaravati Sustainable Capital City Development Project and Mumbai Metro Line 4 Project, Georgia: 280 MW Nenskra Hydropower Plant) as of November 9, 2017, did the government conduct its own environmental and human rights review as part of its project assessment; (c) broken down by individual project (i) what were the outcomes and findings of all the environmental and human rights reviews for all of the AIIB projects that the government conducted, (ii) when was each review completed; and (d) what was the criteria considered within the environmental and human rights reviews by the government when it conducted assessments of all of AIIB’s projects?
Response
Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, on November 6, 2017, Department of Finance officials testified at the Standing Committee on Finance on the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, AIIB. In the testimony, officials explained that the Government of Canada conducts assessments of projects being considered by multilateral development banks of which Canada is a member. As Canada is not yet a member of the AIIB, the government is not yet undertaking assessments of AIIB projects.

Question No. 1334--
Mr. Alupa A.Clarke:
With regard to the appointment process of the Commissioner of Official Languages in the most recent selection process with a cut-off date of September 12, 2017: (a) what was the total number of applicants; (b) what was the number of applicants who submitted applications after the initial cut-off date; (c) what was the number of candidates who passed the initial or preliminary round of screening; (d) what are the details of the steps in the selection process, including (i) number and types of exams given, (ii) number of interviews, (iii) other steps, including a description of each step; and (e) what was the intended date of announcement of the selected candidate for Commissioner of Official Languages?
Response
Mr. Peter Schiefke (Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister (Youth), Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with regard to the appointment process of the Commissioner of Official Languages in the most recent selection process with a cut-off date of September 12, 2017, the response from the Privy Council Office is as follows:
In response to (a), 67 applications were submitted.
In response to (b), 24 applications were submitted after September 12, 2017.
In response to (c), the number of candidates who passed the initial or preliminary round of screening has been withheld to prevent direct or residual disclosure of identifiable data.
In response to (d), candidates are assessed through a variety of means at various points in a selection process, e.g., the screening of applications against the education and experience criteria set in the notice of appointment opportunity for the position. The selection committee interviewed a short list of qualified candidates and checked their references. As the position requires proficiency in both official languages as set out in the Language Skills Act, candidates were also asked to undergo a language skills evaluation. Shortlisted candidates also underwent psychometric assessments to assist in determining their personal suitability for the position
In response to (e), the government is committed to carrying out selection processes as quickly as possible. At the same time, the government is committed to identifying the most qualified candidates through open, transparent, and merit-based processes, and will take as long as is required to find the right person for such an important leadership position. The appointment of Raymond Théberge as the new Commissioner of Official Languages was announced on December 14, 2017.

Question No. 1337--
Ms. Irene Mathyssen:
With regard to claims for disability benefits processed by the Department of Veterans Affairs and to the entire process required to treat those claims, including, but not limited to, receipt of claims, assessment of claims, investigation of claims and gathering of evidence, denial of claims, appeals processes, court appearances, and dealing with complaints, broken down by year since 2012: (a) how much money has been spent by the Department processing claims that have been denied, including (i) staff hours, (ii) court time, (iii) costs for experts, (iv) administration fees, (v) all other relevant expenses; (b) what is the number of claims that were denied and the proportion of total claims it represents; and (c) what is the average length of time for applications to be processed before being denied?
Response
Hon. Seamus O’Regan (Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, in response to (a), Veterans Affairs is unable to provide a breakdown of expenditures related to the processing of claims by approved claims versus denied claims as its financial system does not track expenditures in this manner. However, the overall administrative cost of the adjudication process within Veterans Affairs since 2012 is broken down as follows: 2011-12: $17.7M (Salary $16.7M / Operating $1.0M); 2012-13: $19.2M (Salary $17.8M / Operating $1.5M); 2013-14: $19.1M (Salary $16.9M / Operating $2.2M); 2014-15: $19.6M (Salary $16.5M / Operating $3.2M); 2015-16: $23.3M (Salary $19.8M / Operating $3.6M); 2016-17: $25.3M (Salary $ $22.1M / Operating $3.2M)
Figures have been rounded.
These expenditures are for the centralized operations division, which is responsible for the adjudication of most of Veterans Affairs Canada’s programs and benefits, such as disability awards and pensions, critical injury benefit, earnings loss, retirement income security benefit, and career impact allowance. These expenditures capture the administrative cost, salary and non-salary, of preparing, processing, and adjudicating benefit applications. However, there are other areas of VAC that also contribute to the adjudication process, including but not limited to the following: health professionals, e.g., doctors and nurses; bureau of pensions advocates, e.g., lawyers; and program management and field operations, e.g., case managers and veteran service agents. Expenditures for these areas are not included above.
In response to (b), from January 1, 2012 to November 21, 2017, there were 178,667 conditions ruled on by Veterans Affairs Canada. Of those, 60,293, or 33.7%, were denied. This is not representative of the number of veterans who have been denied disability benefits, as a veteran may receive rulings for multiple conditions.
In response to (c), for those denied, the average turnaround time was 126 days.
Veterans Affairs Canada is working hard to provide veterans and their families with the care and support they need when and where they need it. It is looking at the entire disability application process from intake to decisions to expedite decisions and respond to veterans’ needs more quickly.
Veterans Affairs Canada receives a significant number of applications that often require additional information from veterans. This process takes time to complete to ensure the correct information is gathered to make an informed disability benefit decision. This has affected its service standards for applications.
Although Veterans Affairs Canada has hired additional resources, it recognizes that the adjudication process needs to be streamlined even further and additional adjudicators hired to make application decisions in a more effective and timely manner.
Veterans Affairs Canada is working to implement further measures to reduce the backlog and improve program success by continuing to hire more front-line staff, simplifying the decision-making process for some medical conditions, and working with partners to speed up access to service health records.
The number of disability benefits claims submitted to Veterans Affairs Canada has increased by 20% in 2015-16, as compared to the previous fiscal year.

Question No. 1351--
Mr. Dave MacKenzie:
With regard to the November 24, 2017, claim of the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport in the House of Commons that Canadians expect a government to come out with legislation that is multi-jurisdictional: (a) does the Attorney General concur with the Parliamentary Secretary’s assertion; (b) is it the government’s position that the laws passed by the Parliament of Canada are not limited to the constitutional jurisdiction of Parliament; (c) has the present government proposed bills which would legislate beyond the constitutional jurisdiction of Parliament; and (d) if the answer to (c) is affirmative, which bills are they and what are their extra-jurisdictional provisions?
Response
Hon. Marc Garneau (Minister of Transport, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, on November 24, 2017, the parliamentary secretary made reference to Bill C-64, the wrecked, abandoned or hazardous vessels act, in the House of Commons, and in so doing, referred to the multi-jurisdictional aspects of the bill. In this regard, Bill C-64 includes provisions to enable multi-jurisdictional collaboration, such as delegation of authority and information-sharing provisions, as a result of consultations with indigenous groups, provincial-territorial representatives, port authorities, and other stakeholders. Bill C-64 also includes interdepartmental coordination provisions between the Department of Transport and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, with each having their respective areas of jurisdiction under the proposed bill. The proposed legislation enables collaboration and coordination while falling clearly under federal jurisdiction as it deals with matters pertaining to shipping and navigation.
The government introduced Bill C-64 following consultations with indigenous groups, provincial-territorial representatives, port authorities, and other stakeholders. The purpose of the proposed legislation is to help prevent future occurrences of abandoned and wrecked vessels and reduce the impact of those that do occur. By doing so, the proposed legislation would protect coastal and shoreline communities, the environment, and infrastructure. It also aims to reduce the burden on taxpayers. To date, governments have borne many of the costs to remove and dispose of problem vessels. This legislation is a core element of the national strategy on abandoned and wrecked vessels that was announced as part of the oceans protection plan in November 2016.

Question No. 1355--
Mrs. Cathy McLeod:
With regard to the meeting between the Chief Administrative Officer of the Thompson-Nicola Regional District and the Policy Advisor and Special Assistant for Western Canada and the Territories to the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, on June 1, 2017: what are the titles of all briefing notes provided by the government to the Policy Advisor and Special Assistant between May 1, 2017, and June 8, 2017?
Response
Hon. Amarjeet Sohi (Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, between May 1, 2017, and June 8, 2017, Infrastructure Canada did not provide briefing notes to the policy adviser and special assistant for western Canada and the territories to the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities with regard to his meeting with the chief administrative officer of the Thompson-Nicola Regional District on June 1, 2017.

Question No. 1360--
Mr. Guy Lauzon:
With regard to Bill C-2, An Act to amend the Income Tax Act: (a) did the Minister of Finance sign the proposal to have Cabinet adopt this legislative proposal as its policy; (b) if the answer to (a) is affirmative, on what date did he sign it; (c) on what date was the legislative proposal adopted as the policy of Cabinet; (d) on what date was it decided to propose that the amendments in clause 1 of the Bill would have effect for the 2016 tax year; (e) on what date was the drafting of Ways and Means Motion No. 1 completed; (f) on what date was the drafting of the Bill completed; (g) on what date did the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons hold the Bill review meeting; (h) was the Minister of Finance in attendance at the meeting referred to in (g); and (i) on what date was it decided to schedule the tabling of Ways and Means Motion No. 1 for December 7, 2015?
Response
Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, as publicly stated by the government House leader on November 4, 2015 as the reason to call back the House in December 2015, the Government of Canada took the first step to fulfill one of its key mandate commitments on December 7, 2015, which was to give middle-class Canadians a tax break.
On that date, the Minister of Finance tabled in the House of Commons a notice of ways and means motion to reduce the 22% personal income tax rate to 20.5%. To help pay for this middle-class tax cut, the government asked the wealthiest one per cent of Canadians to contribute a little more. Therefore, the motion also included provisions to create a new top personal income tax rate of 33% for individual taxable incomes in excess of $200,000 and provisions to return the tax-free savings account annual contribution limit to $5,500 from $10,000.
These measures were included in Bill C-2, which was tabled in the House of Commons on December 9, 2015, and received royal assent on December 15, 2016. By proposing that these tax changes take effect as of January 1, 2016, the government was able to offer immediate help to nearly nine million Canadians, while laying the groundwork for long-term economic growth.
The government applies the principles set out in the Access to Information Act in processing parliamentary returns. Information related to cabinet deliberations and decision-making has been withheld on those grounds.

Question No. 1361--
Mr. John Brassard:
With regard to the climate change report prepared by Abacus Data and presented at the meeting of the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment on Friday November 3, 2017, in Vancouver, British Columbia: (a) when was the tendering process for this study released; (b) how many firms replied to the tender; (c) who was questioned for the data that was used for the report; (d) what are the details of the contract with Abacus Data related to the report, including (i) contract amount, (ii) date, (iii) duration, (iv) description of goods or services provided, (v) file number; and (e) what are the details of all meetings between the Chairman of Abacus Data and Environment and Climate Change Canada or the Privy Council Office, including (i) date, (ii) ministers and exempt staff in attendance as well as any other attendees, (iii) agenda items, (iv) location?
Response
Hon. Catherine McKenna (Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, Environment and Climate Change Canada has no contract recorded in relation to Question No. 1361.

Question No. 1362--
Mr. Louis Plamondon:
With regard to the Office of the Governor General, for the years 2015, 2016 and 2017: how many people did it employ, including (i) the list of all employees, by position, with job descriptions, including the Office of the Secretary to the Governor General (OSGG), (ii) the total of all salaries, including benefits, of the management positions for the OSGG?
Response
Mr. Peter Schiefke (Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister (Youth), Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with regard to the Office of the Governor General, for the years 2015, 2016, and 2017, the response from the Office of the Governor General is as follows: The office of the secretary to the Governor General is headed by the secretary who serves as a senior adviser to the Governor General and Herald Chancellor of the Canadian Heraldic Authority.
As of March 31, 2015: Salaries: $11.62M Benefits: $1.89M As of March 31, 2016: Salaries: $11.94M Benefits: $1.87M As of March 31, 2017: Salaries: $11.71M Benefits: $1.80M.
With regard to policy, program and protocol, this branch plans and implements the Governor General’s program domestically and abroad, including over 500 events yearly; administers visitor and interpretation services--over 300,000 visitors last year--at both official residences, Rideau Hall and the Citadelle; provides editorial and public affairs services, and is responsible for providing overall support to the viceregal family.
The number of FTEs, which includes the secretary’s office, is as follows: As of March 31, 2015: 83 As of March 31, 2016: 92 As of March 31, 2017: 95.
The Chancellery of Honours With regard to the chancellery of honours, the chancellery branch administers all aspects of the Canadian honours system including the Order of Canada, the bravery decorations, the meritorious service decorations and the sovereign’s medal for volunteers; and the Canadian heraldic authority which creates and records armorial bearings.
The number of FTEs is as follows: As of March 31, 2015: 28 As of March 31, 2016: 36 (additional funds allocated following the honours review: https://www.budget.gc.ca/2015/docs/plan/ch4-2-eng.html). As of March 31, 2017: 39.
Corporate Services With regard to corporate services, the corporate services branch supports internal services and implements central agency policies and guidelines that apply across the organization. This branch is divided into two components. One component encompasses financial and materiel management, information technology, information resources, and mail management. The other component encompasses people management, i.e., human resources; workplace management, i.e., accommodations, security, and transportation services, as well as strategic planning and internal communications.
The number of FTEs is as follows: As of March 31, 2015: 49 As of March 31, 2016: 46 As of March 31, 2017: 39.

Question No. 1373--
Mr. Jamie Schmale:
With regard to directives and instructions provided by the Privy Council Office (PCO) to any department or agency since November 4, 2015, and excluding any instructions provided by the Legislation and House Planning section of PCO: what are the details of all directives and instructions including (i) sender, (ii) recipients, (iii) date, (iv) directive or instruction provided?
Response
Mr. Peter Schiefke (Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister (Youth), Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the Privy Council Office does not track all directives and instructions provided to other departments or agencies. Attempting to address this inquiry within the allotted time frame could lead to the disclosure of incomplete or misleading information.

Question No. 1377--
Mr. Dan Albas:
With regard to the statement by the Minister of Finance in the House of Commons on November 30, 2017, that “No one outside the closed circle within the Department of Finance and those who needed to know within our government would have known about our actions in advance of that date”, in reference to the tabling of the Notice of Ways and Means Motion to amend the Income Tax Act: what are the titles of all individuals who knew about the actions prior to December 7, 2015, and when did they know?
Response
Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the Department of Finance Canada’s responsibilities include the development and evaluation of federal taxation policies and legislation. Accordingly, the department supported the Minister of Finance in developing the notice of ways and means motion tabled in Parliament on December 7, 2015, as well as the implementing legislation, which was introduced in Parliament as Bill C-2 on December 9, 2015. The department also worked on preparing communications material to support the December 7, 2015, announcement, including a news release and a backgrounder.

Question No. 1382--
Mr. Phil McColeman:
With regard to the statement by the Minister of National Revenue in the House of Commons on November 6, 2017, that “Over the past two years, we have invested nearly $1 billion to combat tax havens. This investment has helped our efforts to recover nearly $25 billion”: (a) how much of the nearly $25 billion has been recovered from tax havens; and (b) what is the breakdown of the $25 billion by country or continent where the tax haven is located?
Response
Hon. Diane Lebouthillier (Minister of National Revenue, Lib.): :
Mr. Speaker, with respect to the question, here is the response from the Canada Revenue Agency, or CRA. In terms of part (a), fiscal impact is the traditional measure used for the CRA’s departmental performance report to report on the audit assessment and examination results from compliance activities. More specifically, it consists of federal and provincial taxes assessed, tax refunds reduced, interest and penalties, and the present value of future federal tax assessable arising from compliance actions. It excludes amounts reversed on appeal and uncollectable amounts.
Over the past two fiscal years, the CRA identified $25 billion in fiscal impact from audit activities: $12.7 billion in 2015-16 and $12.5 billion in 2016-17. Some of the CRA’s audit functions focus on large business and aggressive tax planning by high net-worth individuals. Audits in these areas have yielded approximately two-thirds of this fiscal impact, $15.9 billion. A large part of these adjustments for large businesses, by value, are based on CRA reassessments of intra-company transfer prices on payments made to related companies in low-tax jurisdictions.
Taxpayers, especially those with complex tax structures, may have many transactions, both domestic and international, that lead to a specific account balance requiring payment. The complexity of the calculations for payments on taxes owed and the attribution of them to audits versus other sources of debt in a given year is very difficult to do accurately. Audit assessments, particularly those involving large amounts or related to aggressive tax planning, are frequently appealed and then litigated, and as a result, it can be several years before there is judicial confirmation of the amount owed. In addition, there can be issues securing payment from taxpayers and bankruptcies can also occur. As such, the CRA cannot provide a specific number in the manner requested.
However, the CRA can confirm that in fiscal year 2016-17, the CRA resolved $52.1 billion in outstanding tax debt from all revenue lines, most notably individual tax, corporate tax, GST/HST, and payroll deductions, which were payable for current and previous years.
In terms of part (b), as noted, the CRA does not track fiscal impact in the manner requested.

Question No. 1383--
Mr. Alain Rayes:
With regard to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, for the years 2015, 2016 and 2017: what was the total remuneration paid by the Corporation, including all bonuses, the overtime buyout, the celebrity premium, the clothing allowance and all other premiums, for each (i) male host of a French-language television news program, (ii) female host of a French-language television news program?
Response
Mr. Sean Casey (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, in processing parliamentary returns, the government applies the Privacy Act and the principles set out in the Access to Information Act. The requested information has been withheld on the grounds that it constitutes competitive as well as personal information.

Question No. 1384--
Ms. Lisa Raitt:
With regard to the Disability Tax Credit and individuals who self-identify with type 1 Diabetes: (a) what percentage of individuals with type 1 Diabetes were (i) approved, (ii) rejected, for the Disability Tax Credit during the 2015-16 fiscal year; and (b) what percentage of individuals with type 1 Diabetes were (i) approved, (ii) rejected, for the Disability Tax Credit between May 2, 2017, and December 5, 2017?
Response
Hon. Diane Lebouthillier (Minister of National Revenue, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with respect to the question, here is the response from the Canada Revenue Agency, CRA. In terms of parts (a) and (b), to be eligible for the disability tax credit, an individual must have a severe and prolonged impairment in physical or mental functions, as defined in the Income Tax Act and as certified by a medical practitioner. Eligibility is not based on a diagnosis, but rather on the effects of the impairment on their ability to perform the basic activities of daily living. Eligibility determinations are not made, or tracked, based on diagnosis. Therefore, the CRA is unable to respond in the manner requested as the data is not available.

Question No. 1385--
Ms. Lisa Raitt:
With regard to the Privy Council Office’s “Mandate Letter Tracker” and the 13 commitments listed as “underway with challenges”, as of December 5, 2017: (a) what specifically are the challenges, broken down by commitment; (b) what specific actions is the government planning in order to overcome the challenges, broken down by commitment; and (c) for each of the 13 commitments, does the government plan on keeping its commitment or not?
Response
Mr. Peter Schiefke (Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister (Youth), Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with regard to (a), transparency and accountability are central themes of the Government of Canada’s mandate, as illustrated by the November 2015 public release of ministerial mandate letters. The Canada.ca/results website creates a central, accessible space anyone can go to, to monitor the progress against the government’s commitments to Canadians as outlined in the ministerial mandate letters. The website includes not only an overall status of progress for all commitments, but also a paragraph with more information on the status of implementation. For those commitments that are “under way with challenges”, more information on the specific challenges can be found in that paragraph.
With regard to (b), an “underway with challenges” status means progress toward completing this commitment is going more slowly than expected or that the commitment is complex by its very nature. The government is working with departments to overcome the challenges identified. While the 13 commitments that are “under way with challenges” can be found across a variety of the government priorities, four are under the indigenous priority, and progress requires longer-term, transformative changes that are part of reconciliation with indigenous peoples. Some of the other commitments are taking longer to implement than anticipated. More specific context is given in the text associated with the 13 commitments classified as “under way with challenges”, as well as a link to additional information as appropriate.
With regard to (c), as of December 5, 2017, the government is planning on keeping all the 13 commitments that are “under way with challenges”. Updates to the status of commitments will be reflected in future updates of the mandate letter tracker.

Question No. 1388--
Mr. Dave MacKenzie:
With regard to the $576,500 paid to Vox Pop Labs Incorporated for Project Tessera: (a) what goods or services did the government receive as a result of the payment prior to project’s originally scheduled end date of September 30, 2017; (b) did Vox Pop Labs Incorporated fulfill the conditions of its applications; (c) how did Vox Pop Labs specifically fulfill “Justification 6” of its application where it stated “the project will be created and launched in a timely fashion, resulting in a significant impact during the celebratory period in 2017”; (d) how did Vox Pop Labs specifically fulfill “Justification 7” on its application, where it was projected that the project would reach in excess of 1,000,000 individuals; and (e) how many individuals have viewed Project Tessera, since January 1, 2017, broken down by month, or what is the best estimate, if exact figures are not available?
Response
Mr. Arif Virani (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage (Multiculturalism), Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with regard to (a), Vox Pop Labs Incorporated--Vox Pop--originally received a contribution from the Canada 150 Fund of $576,500 for Project Tessera, a Canada 150 signature project. Vox Pop subsequently received a supplement of $228,782, bringing the total contribution to $805,282.
The Government of Canada supported Project Tessera under the Canada 150 fund through a contribution and not a contract. Therefore, the Government of Canada is not procuring goods or services. Project Tessera is not a Government of Canada project; Project Tessera belongs to Vox Pop Labs Incorporated.
Vox Pop Labs Incorporated has changed the name of their project from Project Tessera to Echoes.
With regard to (b), Vox Pop is fulfilling its obligations as per the contribution agreement with the Canada 150 fund. The key activities for the project as outlined in the original contribution agreement are as follow: create a digital quiz that will survey users on themes such as culture, values, symbols, and belonging to Canada, and encourage participants to learn about their own national identities and cultures and explore the commonalities they have with other people across the country; generate a unique data set on public perceptions about Canada and what it means to be Canadian in 2017; and ensure the findings of the survey, including all relevant data, are placed in the public domain and freely accessible to Canadians by December 31, 2017. The survey results will serve as a legacy of Canada 150 for future generations.
The “digital quiz” now called Echoes was launched on Monday, December 4, 2017. Echoes will generate a unique dataset on public perceptions about Canada and what it means to be Canadians in 2017.
With regard to (c), the launch of the project was originally scheduled to coincide with the Canada Day celebrations; however, after completing the analysis of their panel studies, Vox Pop Labs determined that their design did not sufficiently capture a user’s sense of collective and individual belonging to the Canadian cultural mosaic as per the goals of the project specified in the contribution agreement. Vox Pop Labs chose to delay the launch so the survey could be improved.
With regard to (d) and (e), the Echoes survey was launched on Monday, December 4, 2017. It is too early to say how many individuals will participate.

Question No. 1389--
Mr. Wayne Easter:
With regard to the contract that was signed between Transport Canada and the City of Charlottetown and any of its agencies pertaining to the Charlottetown Port Authority: (a) what are the guidelines or conditions of use; and (b) do these include a provision for industrial use?
Response
Hon. Marc Garneau (Minister of Transport, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with regard to (a), Transport Canada transferred the port of Charlottetown under the port divestiture program on April 21, 2005, to the Charlottetown Harbour Authority Inc.
The operating agreement between Transport Canada and the Charlottetown Harbour Authority Inc. dictated conditions of use for the first four years of operations. The agreement expired on April 21, 2009.
After this date, the Charlottetown Harbour Authority Inc. is free to use the facility as it wishes, provided it follows all applicable federal, provincial, and municipal laws.
With regard to (b), there are no specific provisions on the industrial use of lands in any of the agreements. As mentioned, any and all use of the property must follow all applicable federal, provincial, and municipal laws pertaining to that specific use.

Question No. 1393--
Mr. Robert Kitchen:
With regard to the November 21, 2017 news release titled “Government of Canada provides financial support to Ontario college students affected by labour dispute”: (a) what are the details of the financial support, excluding any support students would have normally received had a labour dispute not occurred, including (i) how many students received payments, (ii) what was the average amount received by a student, (iii) what percentage of the payments required repayment, such as loans; (b) broken down by type of financial assistance received, as referenced in (a), what criteria was used to determine if an applicant would receive financial assistance; (c) how many students applied for the financial support referred to in (a); and (d) how many of the students referred to in (c) were granted financial assistance?
Response
Mr. Rodger Cuzner (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, Canada’s prosperity depends on young Canadians getting the education and the experience they need to prepare for the jobs of today and tomorrow.
With regard to (a), affected students will be eligible to receive additional financial assistance for the weeks added to their school terms.
With regard to (a)(i), nearly 140,000 Canada student loans and grants recipients were affected by the strike. Where extensions to school terms occur, the associated assessments for additional financial assistance will take place until the spring of 2018. As a result, final statistics on additional payments due to the strike will only be available approximately six months after the conclusion of the academic year.
With regard to (a)(ii), the amount each student receives will depend on their individual eligibility for Canada Student Loans and Grants, and on the time period by which their individual programs are extended.
With regard to (a)(iii), final statistics on additional payments due to the strike will only be available approximately six months after the conclusion of the academic year.
With regard to (b), criteria to determine a student’s eligibility for financial assistance due to the strike do not change from the regular assessment process. Affected students who received the Canada student grant for full-time students will receive an additional amount of grant based on their family income and extended weeks of study; Canada student loan recipients may be eligible for up to an extra $210 per week, depending on individual needs—that is, additional cost of living and available resources.
With regard to (c), nearly 140,000 students affected by the strike could qualify for additional financial support. Students from Ontario will not be required to reapply, as data on extended sessions will be available to assess their additional needs. Students from other provinces studying at Ontario colleges will need to reapply; however, data will only be available approximately six months after the conclusion of the academic year.
With regard to (d), final statistics on additional payments due to the strike will only be available approximately six months after the conclusion of the academic year.

Question No. 1394--
Mr. Todd Doherty:
With regard to homeowners whose property was burned as a result of the wildfires in British Columbia: are they required to declare timber salvaged from their property as a capital gain?
Response
Hon. Diane Lebouthillier (Minister of National Revenue, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the determination of how income from the sale of trees on a woodlot would be taxed under the Income Tax Act is a question that would require a review of the facts and circumstances of the particular situation.
“Woodlot” is used in a broad sense to mean land covered with trees. A woodlot includes treed land held primarily as a source of fuel, posts, logs or trees, whether the trees are grown with or without human intervention. The term also includes treed land that is part of a cottage property and a farmer’s wooded land.
Generally, where a woodlot is a non-commercial woodlot and money or other valuable consideration is received for the sale of timber or the right to cut timber, the sale proceeds are subject to tax on capital account, as a capital gain, generally as a disposition of personal-use property. Generally, a loss on the sale of personal-use property is not deductible.
A capital gain is generally calculated as the proceeds of disposition on the sale of property minus the adjusted cost of the property and related selling expenses. Depending on the situation, capital gains could result from the sale of salvageable lumber.
For more information on capital gains, members may refer to “T4037 Capital Gains 2016” on www.Canada.ca.
The CRA recognizes the difficulties faced by Canadians affected by wildfires in British Columbia and understands that natural disasters may cause hardship for taxpayers whose primary concerns during this time are their families, homes, and communities.
The Canada Revenue Agency, or CRA, administers legislation that gives the Minister of National Revenue discretion to grant relief from penalty or interest when the following types of situations prevent a taxpayer from meeting their tax obligations: extraordinary circumstances, actions of the CRA, inability to pay or financial hardship, or other circumstances. For more information about the circumstances that may warrant relief from penalties or interest, members may refer to “Cancel or waive penalties or interest” on www.Canada.ca.

Question No. 1401--
Mr. Harold Albrecht:
With regard to the Canada Summer Jobs Program for the Summer of 2017: (a) which organizations received funding; and (b) how much funding did each organization receive?
Response
Mr. Rodger Cuzner (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the list of organizations funded through the Canada summer jobs program for the summer of 2017, including the amount paid, will be made public on the program website. It will be available at www.canada.ca/canada-summers-jobs.

Question No. 1409--
Ms. Candice Bergen:
With regard to Ministers who are responsible for various regional development agencies: (a) between January 1, 2017 and December 8, 2017, how many days did the Minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency spend in (i) Nova Scotia, (ii) New Brunswick, (iii) Prince Edward Island, (iv) Newfoundland and Labrador; (b) between January 1, 2017, and December 8, 2017 how many days did the Minister responsible for Western Economic Diversification spend in (i) British Columbia, (ii) Alberta, (iii) Saskatchewan, (iv) Manitoba; (c) between January 1, 2017 and December 8, 2017, how many days did the Minister responsible for the Canada Economic Development Agency for the Regions of Quebec spend in Quebec; (d) between January 1, 2017 and December 8, 2017, how many days did the Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Initiative in Northern Ontario spend in Northern Ontario; and (e) between January 1, 2017 and December 8, 2017, how many days did the Minister responsible for the the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario spend in Southern Ontario?
Response
Hon. Navdeep Bains (Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with regard to the information requested on travel by the minister responsible for the regional development agencies, please refer to the proactive disclosure on travel for the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development at the following link: https://www.ic.gc.ca/app/ic/trvlHsptltyDsclsr/pblc/indx.do?lang=eng.
In addition to travelling to various cities across Canada, the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and his staff meet with stakeholders from all regions of the country to discuss regional and local issues on a regular and ongoing basis.

Question No. 1411--
Mr. Dean Allison:
With regard to Bill C-27, An Act to amend the Pension Benefits Standards Act, 1985: (a) did the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons convene a bill review meeting prior to the Bill's introduction; and (b) did the Minister of Finance attend the bill review meeting?
Response
Mr. Kevin Lamoureux (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the details of a bill review process, including individual ministers’ involvement in the process, are considered a cabinet confidence.

Question No. 1422--
Mr. Harold Albrecht:
With regard to revenue which will be received by government as a result of the sale of marijuana after July 1, 2018: (a) what is the projected annual revenue generated from taxation on marijuana; and (b) what percentage of the revenue referred to in (a) will be given to (i) provinces, (ii) municipalities, (iii) First Nations, Inuit, and Metis organizations, (iv) other organizations, broken down by recipient?
Response
Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, on November 10, 2017, the Department of Finance Canada published for consultation a proposed excise duty framework for cannabis products. The proposed framework will support our twin goals of keeping cannabis out of the hands of youth, and profits from its sale out of the hands of criminals as we work to legalize and strictly regulate access to cannabis. The public consultation period closed on December 7, 2017.
Finance Canada is still assessing the potential size of the legal cannabis market, which will be a key factor in determining how much revenue will ultimately be collected under the proposed excise duty framework. In the short term, the size of the legal market will depend on a number of factors, including the supply of legal product, and the distribution and retail systems developed by provinces and territories, the details of which are still being assessed.
At the finance ministers’ meeting on December 11, 2017, ministers agreed that for an initial two-year period following the legalization of non-medical cannabis, taxation revenues will be shared on the basis of 75 per cent for provincial and territorial governments and 25 per cent for the federal government. Provinces and territories will work with municipalities according to shared responsibilities towards legalization. From 2018¬-19 to 2019-20, the federal portion of cannabis excise tax revenue will be capped at $100 million annually. Any federal revenue in excess of $100 million during this time will be provided to provinces and territories.
The department will report on its fiscal projections at a future date.

Question No. 1425--
Mr. John Nater:
With regard to responses provided by the government to questions on the Order Paper, since November 4, 2015, where the government cited the principles of the Access to Information or Privacy Act as a justification for not providing the requested information: for each response that has such a citation, or any similar type of citation, what are the specific principles used to justify withholding the information, broken down by response and by question?
Response
Mr. Kevin Lamoureux (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, Parliament adopted the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act in 1983. Since then, successive governments have provided information in parliamentary returns in a manner that respects the principles governing the disclosure of government information contained in these acts.
Since parliamentary returns are not formally processed under these acts, specific sections are not quoted to justify non-disclosure. However, parliamentary returns officers consult officials responsible for access to information and privacy to ensure that the Privacy Act and the principles governing exclusions, exemptions, and prohibitions contained in the Access to Information Act are applied to proposed responses to parliamentary returns.
Abacus Data Inc.Access to Information ActAccess to information requestsAlbas, DanAlbrecht, HaroldAllison, DeanAsian Infrastructure Investment BankAubin, RobertAviation safety inspectorsBains, NavdeepBergen, Candice
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Lib. (ON)

Question No. 1292--
Mr. Steven Blaney:
With regard to staffing levels at the regional development agencies, broken down by agency: (a) how many full-time equivalents were employed by each agency as of (i) April 1, 2015, (ii) April 1, 2016, (iii) April 1, 2017; and (b) what is the breakdown in (a) by city or location of employment?
Response
(Return tabled)

Question No. 1293--
Mr. Steven Blaney:
With regard to government expenditures on tickets for sporting events since September 19, 2016, broken down by department, agency, Crown corporation, or other government entity: what was the (i) date of event, (ii) location, (iii) total cost, (iv) cost per ticket, (v) number of tickets, (vi) title of persons using the tickets (v) title and description of event?
Response
(Return tabled)

Question No. 1297--
Mr. Pierre-Luc Dusseault:
With regard to the passport applications processed by the Passport Program since 2010: how many applications were processed for postal codes from the Estrie region, broken down by year?
Response
(Return tabled)

Question No. 1298--
Mr. Gordon Brown:
With regard to the government’s plan to negotiate mutual logistics support arrangements with Spain and Chile, as required, to provide at sea replenishment, until the arrival of the joint support ship (JSS), as referenced in the government’s response to the House of Commons Standing Committee on National Defence’s Report titled “The Readiness of Canada’s Naval Forces”: (a) what estimations have been done to determine the cost of having Spain and Chili supply the Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) and will the contract including costs be tabled; (b) what studies have been done to ensure Spain and Chile can provide the necessary capabilities for the RCN; (c) what are the operational limitations imposed on the RCN in relation to its contract with Spain and Chile, including (i) period of use, (ii) restrictions to operations, (iii) utility of vessels for multi-role capabilities (hospital, HADR, and ammunition carriage) and will the list be tabled in Parliament; (d) was the feasibility of contracting the construction of a third JSS in Canada performed and will this assessment be tabled in Parliament; (e) was the feasibility of procuring a second Resolve Class Auxiliary Oiler Replenishment vessel performed and will it be tabled; (f) what analysis was done to understand the impacts of the support arrangements with Spain and Chile on Canadian jobs, as well as the readiness of the RCN in comparison to acquiring an additional Resolve Class ship Auxiliary Oiler Replenishment; (g) what is the duration of the contract with Spain and Chile; (h) how does this contract help Canada's middle class in the near and medium term; and (i) will the government table any study of social, economic or political risks associated with contracting Spain and Chile to supply the RCN into the mid-2020s when the first JSS will be ready?
Response
(Return tabled)

Question No. 1299--
Mrs. Karen Vecchio:
With regard to all the contracts entered into by each minister’s office or the funds from the budget allocated to each minister’s office, other than for the salaries of employees in that office, since April 23, 2016: what are the (i) names of the beneficiaries, (ii) amounts, (iii) contract dates, (iv) funding dates and durations, (v) titles of the individuals who signed the contract on behalf of the office, (vi) description of their purpose?
Response
(Return tabled)

Question No. 1300--
Mr. Gérard Deltell:
With regard to regional development agencies’ files requiring decisions by the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, since November 4, 2015, broken down by agency, and for each file: (a) what is the file number; (b) on which date did the agency receive the application, request or else, precipitating the need for a decision by the Minister; (c) on which date did the agency seek the Minister’s decision; and (d) on which date did the Minister make his decision?
Response
(Return tabled)

Question No. 1301--
Mr. Gérard Deltell:
With regard to government-wide advertising activities, broken down by department, agency, Crown corporation and other government entity, since June 15, 2016: (a) how many advertisements have been (i) created in total, broken down by year and by type (cinema, internet, out-of-home, print dailies, print magazine, weekly or community newspapers, radio, television), (ii) given an identification number, a name or a media authorization number (ADV number); (b) what is the identification number, name or ADV number for each advertisement listed in (a)(ii); (c) for each advertisements in (a), what is (i) the length (in seconds or minutes), if applicable, (ii) the cost for the production or creation, (iii) the companies used to produce or create, (iv) the number of times it has aired or been published, specifying the total number of times and, if applicable, the total length of time (in seconds or minutes), broken down by month, (v) the total cost to air or publish, broken down by year and month, (vi) the criteria used to select the advertisement placements, (vii) media outlets used to air or publish, broken down by month, (viii) the total amount spent per outlet, broken down by month; and (d) if known, what was the start and end date of each advertising campaign?
Response
(Return tabled)

Question No. 1302--
Mr. Tom Kmiec:
With regard to the federal riding of Calgary Shepard: what is the total amount of government dollars received by business, corporations, and entities within the riding between April 11, 2016, and the present date, including (i) each department or ministry through which the funding was received, (ii) the name of the initiative or program providing the funding, (iii) the date of each transfer, (iv) the amount of each individual transfer?
Response
(Return tabled)

Question No. 1303--
Mrs. Cathy McLeod:
With regard to the creation of the Ad Hoc Cabinet Committee on Federal Recovery Efforts for 2017 British Columbia BC Wildfires, announced by the Prime Minister on July 14, 2017: (a) what are the titles of all briefing notes provided to the committee between July 14, 2017, and October 30, 2017; (b) what are the details of all meetings of this committee, including for each meeting the (i) date, (ii) location, (iii) agenda, (iv) minutes; (c) what analysis has been conducted from July 14, 2017, to present by the government with regard to the long-term impact of the 2017 BC wildfires on BC residents, communities, businesses, and First Nations; (d) what analysis has been conducted from July 14, 2017, to present by Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada with regard to the long-term impact of the 2017 BC wildfires on First Nations in BC; and (e) on what date will the committee disband?
Response
(Return tabled)

Question No. 1304--
Mrs. Cathy McLeod:
With regard to the First Nations-Canada Joint Committee on the Fiscal Relationship: (a) what are the names and titles of each member of the Committee; (b) has the list of committee members changed since December 12, 2016; (c) what are the titles of all briefing notes provided to the Committee between December 13, 2016, and October 30, 2017, by Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada; (d) what are the details of all meetings of the Committee, including, for each meeting, the (i) date, (ii) location, (iii) agenda, (iv) minutes; (e) what are the total travel costs covered by the government for the Committee; (f) what are the total accommodation costs covered by the government for the Committee; (g) what is the daily per diem rate, which members of the Committee are entitled to; and (h) what is the total paid out in per diem for the Committee?
Response
(Return tabled)

Question No. 1305--
Mrs. Cathy McLeod:
With regard to the Privy Council Office and the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls: (a) what is the total amount of money allocated to the Privy Council Office from the National Inquiry's budget; (b) how was the money referred to in (a) spent, and what is the itemized breakdown of all such expenditures; (c) how many employees within the Privy Council Office have been assigned to the National Inquiry between August 1, 2016, and present; and (d) what action has the Privy Council Office taken to support the National Inquiry?
Response
(Return tabled)

Question No. 1306--
Mr. Gabriel Ste-Marie:
With regard to Motion M-42 on tax avoidance in Barbados, voted on by the House on October 26, 2016: (a) was there any analysis by the Department of Finance; (b) did the Minister of Finance notify his department of the motion; (c) did the Department provide any recommendations regarding the motion; (d) did the Department request a legal opinion on the legality of paragraph 5907(11.2)(c) and subsection 5907(11) of the Income Tax Regulations; (e) did the Minister submit a position on the motion to the Treasury Board; (f) did the Minister provide his colleagues with a proposed position on the motion; (g) did the Minister discuss the motion with his colleagues; (h) did the Minister discuss the motion with the Prime Minister; (i) did the position in (e) include his department’s recommendations; (j) did the Minister recuse himself from his caucus’s discussions on the motion; (k) did the Minister recuse himself from any discussions on this matter since the last election; (l) did the Minister reveal to the Department during discussions on Motion M-42 that he was potentially in a conflict of interest as a Morneau-Sheppel shareholder; (m) did the Minister reveal the magnitude of the amount he had at stake in the debate on Motion M-42; (n) before legalizing tax avoidance by the Cooks Islands, did the Minister notify the Prime Minister; (o) does the Department have a legal opinion stating that paragraph 5907(11.2)(c) of the Income Tax Regulations meets the requirements of the Canada-Barbados Income Tax Agreement Act, 1980; and (p) under which section of the Income Tax Act did the government adopt subsection 5907(11) of the Income Tax Regulations?
Response
(Return tabled)

Question No. 1312--
Mr. Kennedy Stewart:
With regard to housing investments and housing assets held by the government: (a) how much federal funding has been spent in Burnaby on housing over the period of 1995-2017, broken down by year; (b) how much federal funding is scheduled to be spent on housing in Burnaby over the period of 2015-2019, broken down by year; (c) how much federal funding has been invested in cooperative housing in Burnaby over the period of 1995-2017, broken down by year; (d) how much federal funding is scheduled to be invested in cooperative housing in Burnaby over the period of 2015-2019, broken down by year; (e) how many physical housing units were owned by the government in Burnaby over the period of 1995-2017, broken down by year?; (f) how many physical housing units owned by the government are scheduled to be constructed in Burnaby over the period of 2015-2019, broken down by year; and (g) what government buildings and lands have been identified in Burnaby as surplus and available for affordable housing developments?
Response
(Return tabled)
8555-421-1292 Staffing levels at regiona ...8555-421-1293 Government expenditures on ...8555-421-1297 Passport applications8555-421-1298 Mutual logistics support a ...8555-421-1299 Contracts and funding for ...8555-421-1300 Regional development agencies8555-421-1301 Government-wide advertisin ...8555-421-1302 Federal funding in the rid ...8555-421-1303 Ad Hoc Cabinet Committee o ...8555-421-1304 First Nations-Canada Joint ...8555-421-1305 Privy Council Office and N ...
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CPC (ON)
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2017-12-08 12:18

Question No. 1260--
Mrs. Shannon Stubbs:
With regard to comments made by the Minister of Finance on October 19, 2017, that he has recused himself “at least twice” in order to avoid a conflict of interest: (a) how many times has the Minister recused himself in order to avoid a conflict of interest; and (b) for each instance in (a), (i) what was the topic or item, (ii) on what date did the Minister become aware that the item could cause a conflict of interest, (iii) on what date did the Minister recuse himself, (iv) on what date did the Minister report his recusal to the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner?
Response
Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner is an independent officer of the House of Commons who administers the Conflict of Interest Act and the Conflict of Interest Code for Members of the House of Commons. The Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner is responsible for helping appointed and elected officials prevent and avoid conflicts between their public duties and private interests.
As per her recommendations, the conflict of interest screen is administered by the minister’s chief of staff and supported by the department. Instances that are caught by the conflict of interest screen are reported to the Ethics Commissioner’s office.
Minister Morneau continues to work closely with the Ethics Commissioner to ensure all the rules are being followed, and has gone above and beyond her recommendations.

Question No. 1262--
Mrs. Shannon Stubbs:
With regard to the announcement made by the Minister of Finance in Hampton, New Brunswick, on October 18, 2017: why was the Member of Parliament for Saint John—Rothesay not invited to attend the announcement?
Response
Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the Department of Finance is unable to respond as it is does not manage the Minister of Finance’s invitations to parliamentarians.

Question No. 1263--
Mr. Charlie Angus:
With regard to First Nations Child and Family Caring Society of Canada and Assembly of First Nations v. Attorney General of Canada (representing the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada), Canadian Human Rights Tribunal File No. T134017008: what are the total legal costs incurred by the government in this matter since January 25, 2016?
Response
Hon. Jody Wilson-Raybould (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, to the extent that the information that has been requested is protected by solicitor-client privilege, the federal crown asserts that privilege and, in this case, has waived that privilege only to the extent of revealing the total legal costs. Justice lawyers, notaries, and paralegals are salaried public servants and therefore no external legal costs were incurred. Based upon the hours recorded, client departments are charged an internal government rate. In this case, the calculation amounts to $807,000 since January 29, 2016.

Question No. 1264--
Mr. Dan Albas:
With regard to Statistics Canada's Table 204-0001, “High income trends of tax filers in Canada, provinces and territories, and census metropolitan areas (CMA), national thresholds annual (percent)”, for 2015 and 2016, and broken down by year: (a) what is the number of tax filers in the (i) top 1%, (ii) top 10%, (iii) bottom 50%; and (b) what is the percentage of federal and provincial or territorial income tax paid as a percentage of total tax paid for each group in (a)?
Response
Hon. Navdeep Bains (Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with regard to Statistics Canada's Table 204-0001, ''High income trends of tax filers in Canada, provinces and territories, and census metropolitan areas (CMA), national thresholds annual (percent)'', for 2015 and 2016, and broken down by year, the 2015 update will be released on November 15, 2017. Data for 2016 will be released the following November, 2018.

Question No. 1265--
Mr. Mel Arnold:
With regard to the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Hudson: (a) when will the ship be back in service; (b) why did the refit of the ship not meet its original completion date and has the refit of the ship been delayed; (c) will the refit be completed under the original $4 million budget and, if not, what is the new budget; (d) how many voyages and research missions have been cancelled as a result of the delay; (e) what are the details of the cancellations in (d); and (f) what are the details of any briefing notes related to the ship, including for each the (i) recipient, (ii) date, (iii) sender, (iv) title, (v) summary, (vi) file number?
Response
Mr. Terry Beech (Parliamentary Secretary for Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with regard to part (a), on November 13, 2017, the CCGS Hudson arrived at its home base of Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. Further work, which has been planned for many months, will be undertaken on the Hudson in preparation for its 2018 programming which is projected to commence on April 4, 2018.
With regard to part (b), the refit of the vessel did not meet its original completion date, as the refit work being carried out by a contractor was not completed on time.
With regard to part (c), the contract for the refit has not been amended to increase the budget. A determination of the final budget cannot be made at this time, as Public Services and Procurement Canada is reviewing the terms of the contract with the original shipyard.
With regard to part (d), a total of seven science missions were impacted due to the unavailability of the CCGS Hudson for the 2017 field season. Of those, one mission was conducted on another Coast Guard vessel, four requests for proposals were issued to carry out other missions on charter vessels, one mission was cancelled outright, and another mission was substantially reduced.
With regard to part (e), the two missions involving cancellations are as follows. The majority of the Atlantic zone off-shelf monitoring program, AZOMP, mission scheduled for May 2017 was cancelled as the initial attempt to charter a vessel was unsuccessful. Some of the high-priority activities, namely the recovery of a subsurface oceanographic mooring and the deployment of Argo floats in the Labrador Sea, have been rescheduled on other Coast Guard vessels. The Natural Resources Canada Baffin Bay geoscience mission had to be cancelled, as no charter was available for the required time frame to conduct the mission.
With regard to part (f), (i) Commissioner Thomas; (ii) September 13, 2016; (iii) Gregory Lick, Director General, Operations; (iv) Memorandum for the Commissioner Vessel Life Extension of CCGS Hudson; (v) The memo seeks effective project approval and spending authority to proceed with the vessel life extension of the CCGS Hudson, at a cost of $26.6 million. The memo also explains that the department will manage project expenditures until the funds become available in fall 2016. (vi) GCCMS: 2016-012-00707; EKME#3656821.
Not all briefing notes are included, pursuant to the government security policy and/or the Access to Information Act.

Question No. 1266--
Mr. Todd Doherty:
With regard to the 3 metric tonnes of Nova Scotia lobster confiscated by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans on October 16, 2017: (a) what country were the lobsters destined for; (b) who owned or was in possession of the lobsters prior to confiscation; (c) what are the reasons for the confiscation; (d) what was the condition of the lobsters on October 16, 2017 (alive, processed, etc.); (e) what is the current status and condition of the lobsters; (f) where and how were the lobsters stored or located once confiscated; and (g) what is the process by which the lobsters will be disposed of (sold as government surplus, returned to water, etc.)?
Response
Mr. Terry Beech (Parliamentary Secretary for Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, as this occurrence is the subject of an ongoing investigation, Fisheries and Oceans Canada cannot respond to this question at this time.
View Geoff Regan Profile
Lib. (NS)

Question No. 1237--
Mr. Peter Kent:
With regard to the decision taken by the World Heritage Committee of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on July 7, 2017, to inscribe Hebron and the Tomb of the Patriarchs as a Palestinian site on the World Heritage List and on the List of World Heritage in Danger: what is the government’s official position on the UNESCO decision?
Response
Hon. Chrystia Freeland (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, Canada is disappointed by the continued politicization of the work of the world heritage committee as evidenced by the decision to include the Old Town of Hebron/Al-Khalil on the list of World Heritage in Danger.
This decision hurts UNESCO and it does nothing to advance prospects for the comprehensive, just, and lasting peace to which we aspire for the sake of all Israelis and Palestinians.
Canada is not a member of UNESCO’s world heritage committee. Therefore, Canada could not vote against this decision, but expressed our opposition during the world heritage committee meeting in Krakow, Poland, in July 2017.

Question No. 1238--
Mr. Bev Shipley:
With regard to the conflict of interest screen for the Minister of Finance: (a) since November 4, 2015, how many times did the chief of staff warn or notify the Minister that he may be contravening the conflict of interest screen; (b) when did each instance in (a) occur and what was the nature of each warning or notification; (c) for each instance in (a), was action taken as a result of the warning or notification, and if so, what action was taken; (d) did the Minister disclose the fact that Morneau Shepell relocated its headquarters to Barbados in 2016 to his chief of staff; (e) did the Minister attend any meetings concerning the Barbados tax treaty or the use of Barbados as a tax haven, and if so, did the Minister inform his chief of staff about the meeting; and (f) did the chief of staff advise the Minister that the changes proposed in the consultation paper “Tax Planning Using Private Corporations” could benefit Morneau Shepell or the Minister personally, and if so, on what date was the advice given?
Response
Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner is an independent officer of the House of Commons who administers the Conflict of Interest Act and the Conflict of Interest Code for Members of the House of Commons. The Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner is responsible for helping appointed and elected officials prevent and avoid conflicts between their public duties and private interests.
Per her recommendations, the conflict of interest screen is administered by the minister’s chief of staff and supported by the department. Instances that are caught by the conflict of interest screen are reported to the Ethics Commissioner’s office.
Minister Morneau continues to work closely with the Ethics Commissioner to ensure all the rules are being followed, and has gone above and beyond her recommendations.

Question No. 1239--
Mr. Bev Shipley:
With regard to correspondence, in both paper and electronic format, between the Premier of Ontario and the Prime Minister, in relation to the proposed tax changes announced by the Minister of Finance on July 18, 2017: what are the details of all such correspondence, including the (i) date, (ii) format (email, letter), (iii) sender, (iv) recipient, (v) title, (vi) summary of contents?
Response
Mr. Peter Schiefke (Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister (Youth), Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the Privy Council Office does not have any correspondence, neither in paper nor electronic format, between the Premier of Ontario and the Prime Minister, in relation to the proposed tax changes announced by the Minister of Finance on July 18, 2017.

Question No. 1241--
Mr. Bev Shipley:
With regard to the Minister of Finance’s paper entitled “Tax Planning Using Private Corporations” and the consultations, which closed on October 2, 2017: (a) how many submissions did the Department of Finance receive by (i) mail (paper), (ii) email, (iii) phone; (b) for each submission in (a), what are the details, broken down by submitter’s (i) profession, (ii) province; (c) how many submissions were in favour of the government’s proposed changes to passive income rules; (d) how many submissions were opposed to the government’s proposed changes to passive income rules; (e) how many submissions were in favour of the government’s proposed changes to so-called “income sprinkling” rules; (f) how many submissions were opposed to the government’s proposed changes to so-called “income sprinkling” rules; (g) how many submissions were in favour of the government’s proposed changes to so-called “income stripping” rules; (h) how many submissions were opposed to the government’s proposed changes to so-called “income stripping” rules; (i) how many submissions were received after the deadline, and what did the government do with these submissions; (j) which section of the Department of Finance was responsible for receiving submissions; (k) what is the government’s estimation of revenue to be generated by the proposed changes to passive income rules; (l) what is the government’s estimation of revenue to be generated by the proposed changes to so-called “income sprinkling” rules; and (m) what is the government’s estimation of revenue to be generated by the proposed changes to so-called “income stripping” rules?
Response
Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with regard to part (a), over 21,000 submissions were received in response to the consultation on tax planning using private corporations via email in the dedicated consultation mailbox. This total includes over 11,000 form letters. In addition to the emails received through the consultation mailbox, over 10,000 related items of correspondence to the Minister of Finance were received by the department.
With regard to part (b), the department has not kept a record or a tally of submissions based on their source, such as place of residence, occupation, etc. Individuals and groups making submissions to the consultation mailbox were not asked to provide this information .
With regard to parts (c) to (h), the department is in the process of reviewing submissions to ensure that comments and proposals are properly taken into account in the further development of the policy. Through this process, the department is not keeping a record or a tally of all these submissions based on their degree or type of support. That said, various opinions were expressed.
With regard to part (i), the consultation mailbox received over 200 submissions via email from October 2, 2017 to October 17, 2017, i.e., the date of the question. Concerns raised in these submissions will be considered by the Department of Finance.
With regard to part (j), the tax policy branch of the Department of Finance is receiving the submissions directly.
With regard to part (k), as announced in the fall economic statement 2017, the government will propose measures to limit tax deferral opportunities related to passive investments, and will release draft legislation as part of budget 2018. The department will provide a revenue estimate after key design aspects are determined.
With regard to part (l), the government’s estimation of revenue to be generated by the proposed measures to limit income sprinkling using private corporations is about $215 million in 2018-19, growing to $245 million by 2022-23.
With regard to part (m), the government announced in the fall economic statement 2017 that it is no longer moving forward on the proposed changes regarding the conversion of income into capital gains and that the draft legislative proposals released with the consultation will not proceed.

Question No. 1242--
Mr. Pierre Poilievre:
With regard to the working group referred to by the Minister of Finance’s spokesman in the Toronto Star on February 28, 2017, “to collaborate on transparency and beneficial ownership”: (a) what is the mandate of the working group; (b) on what date was the working group created; (c) on what date does the working group anticipate concluding; (d) since being created, on which dates has the working group met; (e) for each meeting in (d), what were the items on the agenda; (f) what is the membership of the working group, broken down by (i) position or title, (ii) level of government, (iii) department, (iv) responsibilities related to the working group; (g) who was present for each meeting in (d); (h) was the Minister of Finance present for any items pertaining to Barbados being used as a tax haven; (i) If the answer to (h) is affirmative, did the Minister disclose the fact that his company, Morneau Shepell, relocated its headquarters in 2016 to Barbados; (j) if the answer to (i) is affirmative, did the Minister inform his chief of staff; (k) if the answer to (i) is affirmative, did the Minister inform the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner; and (l) if the answer to (i) is affirmative, did the Minister inform the Prime Minister?
Response
Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with regard to parts (a) and (b), the Government of Canada is committed to implementing strong standards for corporate and beneficial ownership transparency that provide safeguards against money laundering, terrorist financing, tax evasion, and tax avoidance, while continuing to facilitate the ease of doing business in Canada. Timely access for competent authorities to accurate and up-to-date beneficial ownership information is vital for combatting illicit financial flows, including money laundering, terrorist financing, and tax evasion and avoidance.
The federal-provincial committee on taxation is a committee composed of senior federal, provincial, and territorial tax officials who meet generally on a semi-annual basis to discuss common tax policy issues and examine their consequences for the national and provincial/territorial economies. The proposal to create a working group of federal, provincial, and territorial officials to examine tax avoidance and evasion, with the first issue proposed for examination being strengthening the collection of beneficial ownership information, was first adopted at the federal-provincial committee on taxation held June 6-7, 2016 in Winnipeg and support for the formation of this working group was confirmed by finance minister at the federal, provincial, and territorial finance ministers’ meeting on June 19 and 20, 2016. Key objectives for the working group are to raise awareness and understanding of the international standards and importance of corporate and beneficial ownership transparency, and collaborate on identifying and advancing options to improve availability of accurate beneficial ownership information.
With regard to parts (c) to (e), the work of the working group is ongoing. The working group met via conference call on September 26, 2016, February 14, 2017, September 12, 2017, and September 29, 2017.
The objective of the working group is to collaborate to advance the issue of strengthening the transparency and collection of beneficial ownership information. The agenda for the first meetings centered on the development of the working group’s objectives and terms of reference and an analysis of the current state of the corporate registry requirements in each of the participating jurisdictions. Subsequent working group meetings have focused on an international comparison regarding what other jurisdictions have proposed or introduced to strengthen the collection of beneficial ownership information and a discussion on potential options for strengthening the collection of beneficial ownership information.
With regard to parts (f) to (l), the working group operates at the officials’ level. Participants at the federal level are officials from the Department of Finance responsible for tax policy, in the tax legislation division, and financial sector policy, financial crimes, and officials from Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada responsible for federal corporate law policy, marketplace framework policy and Corporations Canada. The working group is supported by at least one official from each of the provinces and territories with responsibility for tax and/or corporate law policy.
Various officials from the Department of Finance, from Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, and from most or all provinces and territories participated in each working group meeting, but specific attendance was not recorded.
The working group has not discussed items pertaining to the use of any particular jurisdiction for the purposes of tax avoidance or tax evasion.

Question No. 1244--
Mr. Arnold Viersen:
With regard to the relationship between the Canadian Standards Association (CSA), the Standards Council of Canada and the Department of Industry, since January 1, 2016: (a) what role does the CSA play in the development or recommendation of regulations imposed by the Department of Industry; (b) what specific measures are in place to ensure that groups recommending standards or regulations are not influenced by foreign money; (c) what specific regulations, which were recommended by the CSA, have been put into place by either the Standards Council of Canada or the Department of Industry; (d) what is the website location of any regulations referred to in (c); and (e) what are the details of any memorandums at the Department of Indsutry, which reference the CSA, including the (i) date, (ii) sender, (iii) recipient, (iv) title or subject matter, (v) file number?
Response
Hon. Navdeep Bains (Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with regard to part (a), the Canadian Standards Association, operating as CSA Group, is one of nine standards development organizations accredited by the Standards Council of Canada, SCC, which can be found at: www.scc.ca/en/accreditation/standards/directory-of-accredited-standards-development-organizations. CSA Group is not a regulatory entity and does not report to the Minister of Innovation, Science or Economic Development, ISED, either directly or indirectly through the SCC. SCC is a federal crown corporation whose role includes the coordination of Canada’s voluntary standardization network. SCC does not have any regulatory authority in its mandate.
With regard to part (b), SCC is not aware of any specific measures in place to ensure that groups recommending standards or regulations are not influenced by foreign money. SCC takes its mandate from the Standards Council of Canada Act, its governing legislation, to promote efficient and effective voluntary standardization in Canada, which can be found at: http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/S-16/index.html. SCC promotes the participation of Canadians in voluntary standards activities and coordinates and oversees the efforts of the persons and organizations involved in Canada’s standardization network.
With regard to part (c), neither SCC nor CSA Group is a regulatory entity. SCC is not aware of any regulations put in place that have been recommended by CSA Group.
With regard to part (d), neither SCC nor CSA is a regulatory entity.
With regard to part (e), ISED officials have confirmed that there are no active memoranda referencing the CSA since January 1, 2016.

Question No. 1248--
Mr. Bob Benzen:
With regard to the decision by the Ontario Superintendent of Financial Services to appoint Morneau Shepell as the administrator for the pension plan of Sears Canada Incorporated: (a) when did the Department of Finance first become aware of the decision; (b) which other departments or agencies were notified of the decision, and when were they notified; (c) was any government agency or department consulted prior to naming Morneau Shepell as the administrator, and if so, (i) who was consulted, (ii) on what date did consultation take place; (d) did the Minister of Finance recuse himself from this matter; and (e) if the answer to (d) is affirmative (i) what specific steps were taken by the Minister, (ii) on what date did the Minister recuse himself, (iii) who is replacing the Minister with regard to ministerial responsibility on this file?
Response
Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, private pension plans are regulated under the applicable pension standards legislation, which can be either federal or provincial, depending on the employer’s business operations. Plans sponsored by employers in federally regulated industries, which include banking, interprovincial transportation, and telecommunications, are regulated under the federal Pension Benefits Standards Act, 1985, PBSA.
The Sears pension plan falls under provincial jurisdiction and is regulated by the Ontario Pension Benefits Act. Decisions pertaining to the supervision and administration of this plan are the sole responsibility of the Ontario Superintendent of Financial Services. The federal Department of Finance is not involved in any way.

Question No. 1251--
Mr. Pierre Poilievre:
With regard to appointments by the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) of administrators to wind-up the pension plans of bankrupt or insolvent companies, since January 1, 2004: (a) has OSFI hired Morneau Shepell; and (b) if the answer to (a) is affirmative, what are the details of each instance, including the (i) internal tracking number, (ii) name of the company for which OSFI was seeking an administrator, (iii) date OSFI commenced its search for an administrator, (iv) date Morneau Shepell was hired, (v) date the contract was approved by the Treasury Board Secretariat, (vi) value of the contract, (vii) position or title of the public servant who approved the contract, (viii) date Morneau Shepell concluded its work?
Response
Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions, OSFI, is an independent federal government agency, established under the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions Act, that regulates and supervises more than 400 federally regulated financial institutions and 1,200 private pension plans to determine whether they are in sound financial condition and meeting their regulatory and supervisory requirements.
OSFI is funded mainly through assessments on the financial institutions and private pension plans that it regulates. The deputy head of OSFI is the Superintendent of Financial Institutions, who is appointed for a seven-year term and may not be removed without cause.
OSFI does not hire replacement administrators, rather it has the authority to appoint a replacement administrator under subsection 7.6(1) of the Pension Benefits Standards Act, 1985, PBSA. As such, there is no formal contract between OSFI and an appointed replacement administrator. OSFI does not consult with the Department of Finance on the appointment of replacement administrators.
As per the provisions of the PBSA, a replacement administrator is appointed if the plan administrator is insolvent or unable to act or the Superintendent of Financial Institutions is of the opinion that it is in the best interests of the members, or former members, or any other persons entitled to pension benefits under the plan that the administrator be removed. Replacement administrators may recover their reasonable fees and expenses from the pension fund.
View John Barlow Profile
CPC (AB)
View John Barlow Profile
2016-11-03 12:21 [p.6528]
Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to rise and speak to this. I would like to invite the finance minister, the trade minister, the minister of innovation, and the Minister of Natural Resources to come on down and play The Price Is Right, because it seems as if they will sell their integrity and whatever it takes to get ahead as long as the price is right. That seems to be the game that the Liberal Party is playing with this. Who knows what the showcase showdown will be at the end of this show? I am sure that those who are spending $1,500 to attend these exclusive events will be the ones who will enjoy the benefits of the showcase showdown. However, the message I would like to leave for those who have paid the $1,500 to get these exclusive opportunities to shake hands with and wag the ear of the ministers is that they have overbid. A smarter bid of one dollar would have been a better investment, also of their time.
I want to go back to what the Prime Minister said after he was elected a year ago. I quote from annex B, which states:
Ministers and Parliamentary Secretaries must avoid conflict of interest, the appearance of conflict of interest and situations that have the potential to involve conflicts of interest.
The Prime Minister himself clearly stated to the ministers and parliamentary secretaries that there should be no preferential access to government or appearance of preferential access accorded to individuals or organizations because they have made financial contributions to politicians or political parties.
A lot of the questions we are getting from across the floor are asking whether any laws were broken. The election laws were not broken, but what was broken was a very profound promise by the Prime Minister to do things differently.
He states in that quote, “must avoid conflict of interest” or “the appearance of conflict of interest”.
It is quite obvious that these statements are not worth the paper they are written on. We are back to the age-old Liberal mantra that they are entitled to their entitlements no matter what the cost. Again, if the price is right, they will be there to try to grant whatever it is those people are asking for. I would like to talk about some of those who have done so already, and we are barely just over a year into their mandate.
The Minister of Natural Resources attended an event on August 29 in Edmonton at the offices of MacPherson Leslie and Tyerman. This is the minister for natural resources, mining, oil and gas, forestry, and nuclear energy. The expertise of this law firm with which he had a private meeting just happens to be mining and resource permits and regulations. Not only was this a meeting with this law firm, but it was a private party, and the only people who were allowed to attend were people who paid the $1,500 fee to join the Liberal Laurier Club, which is an exclusive fundraising arm of the Liberal Party. Therefore, to say that this was an open consultation with the energy sector or stakeholders in the mining or oil and gas sector, I think, is quite disingenuous. This was an event exclusively for members of the Liberal Laurier fundraising club, who have paid a $1,500 membership fee, to get an opportunity to speak with the Minister of Natural Resources.
I could tell members right now that, of the 100,000 Albertan energy workers who are out of work, not one has had the opportunity to speak to the Minister of Natural Resources. They are the ones who need that $1,500 to pay their mortgage because they are out of work, and yet a very exclusive, elite group of lawyers in downtown Edmonton has the opportunity to meet with the Minister of Natural Resources. I am certain that mining and resource development permits were a hot topic at that meeting. I am sure there are thousands of Alberta energy workers right now who would love to have an opportunity to sit down with the minister of natural resources and talk about some of the things that they on the ground feel the minister would be able to implement, such as policies and regulations that would help them get back to work, rather than spending his time meeting with lawyers in downtown Edmonton. However, the unemployed energy workers simply do not have the $1,500 or probably the connections to have that opportunity to meet personally with the Minister of Natural Resources.
He is obviously not alone. On April 7, the Minister of Justice attended a Liberal fundraiser hosted by a prominent Bay Street law firm at $500 a ticket. Why would the Minister of Justice be meeting exclusively with a law firm in downtown Toronto?
Let us keep going.
The Minister of Justice attended another event, this time for only $1,000 a ticket—she had a discount—on April 28. This was a meeting in Vancouver and included Gordon and Catherine McCauley. Gordon just happens to be CEO of Viable Healthworks and director of Centre for Drug Research and Development. I am sure they were talking about anything other than marijuana laws or decriminalizing marijuana. I am sure those were not topics at that event.
The Minister of International Trade will be attending a Liberal Party of Canada event that advertises a wonderful evening with the Minister of International Trade, in Toronto. When I go to that website and click on it to get a password to attend, I cannot get that password. This is supposed to be open. If I want an opportunity to talk to the Minister of International Trade about what happened with CETA or what is going on with the trans-Pacific partnership, which farmers and ranchers in southern Alberta are very eager to see proceed, unfortunately, I do not have access to what is supposed to be an open and transparent process to meet with government members of Parliament, ministers.
The finance minister recently had an event in Halifax, on October 13. The ticket price for that event was $1,500. Again, that was pretty exclusive company. Fifteen business executives, including land developers, bankers, and mortgage brokers, each paid $1,500 to have an opportunity to meet with the finance minister. I am sure they were not talking about downtown Halifax developments or the Halifax Port Authority. I am sure it was just to get some consultation on the upcoming budget, which will be much better than we heard in the update, hopefully.
Again, I would love to carry on.
I am going to add the innovation minister. He was the top guest at a Vancouver event, where the ticket price was $1,500. He also must have had a tough time, as he is taking a discount. His next one is at a private residence where the tickets are only $400.
The Prime Minister himself is not free from these either. He has attended 17 of these, some of them with a ticket price as high as $1,525.
The Liberals have 89 of these events planned over the next few months. Despite the rhetoric we are hearing in question period or here today about not breaking any laws and trying to be open and transparent, despite the reaction they are getting from Canadian taxpayers that this is wrong, they do not care. They are plugging right along with continuing to host these things. It is an absolute affront to this House and to Canadian taxpayers, a slap in the face, saying they don't care what people think about the optics of these types of fundraisers, and they are going to go right ahead and do them anyway.
The finance minister talked quite a bit that this was going to be consultation, that this was a chance to speak to Canadians about the budget process, but the federal lobbying commissioner, Karen Shepherd, is now investigating these pay for access fundraisers; the Ethics Commissioner has called these fundraisers unsavoury; and even former Liberal minister Sheila Copps has asked the Prime Minister to ban these elite fundraisers, saying that during the Chrétien years, when she was minister, “You go and you get an envelope, ‘I need this, I want this, I want this’”.
It is quite clear that this has nothing to do with consultations. This is about what they can do for people and how much it is going to cost.
If he talked about consulting with Canadians, there are other ways to do it. We have a break week next week. I am going to be in my riding of Foothills. I have four round tables planned during that week, throughout the riding. I am going to be consulting with hundreds of Foothills residents about what they think is important as we go through the budget process, and certainly they are going to be focusing on Alberta jobs.
I am renting rooms at the Legion, at a local hotel, and at a local restaurant. Do members know how much I am charging people to attend? I am charging zero, absolutely zero. That is how consultation with Canadians should be done. It should not be done at $1,500 a head.
They are talking to the wealthy, the entitled, the elite. They are not talking to average hard-working Canadians, the ones they should really be paying attention to because those are the ones who really matter, with what is going on and the decisions that the Liberal government is making.
In conclusion, I am certainly hearing from my constituents, in disbelief, that this is utterly the kind of attitude of entitlement to their entitlements. It is the same old Liberal Party.
View Luc Berthold Profile
CPC (QC)
View Luc Berthold Profile
2016-06-14 19:00 [p.4513]
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to be sharing my time with the member for Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan.
The budget debate will come to a close this evening. In summary, contrary to its promise to create a small deficit of only $10 billion, the government will saddle Canadians with a budget deficit that could reach $29.4 billion this year alone. Canadians did not vote for that.
Just six months after it was elected, the Liberal government seems to be suffering already from an incurable Liberal disease: acute spendicitis. That is what I will try to show in my speech this evening.
By analyzing the expenses incurred to set up offices for the ministers in this cabinet after they were appointed, we realize, fortunately, that not all the ministers have caught the disease.
Let us take a look at the race to set up the beautiful offices for ministers. In last place, we find the Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities, who spent only $500 on setting up her office. I would like to congratulate her. That is to her credit. For once, coming in last is quite honourable. The first shall be last and the last shall be first in this case.
There is stiff competition among the other ministers. Even the Minister of Finance, who spent $12,000 on a superluxurious flight to New York, spent only $1,400 to set up his office.
At the back of the pack, ministers spent between $1,000 and $7,000 to set up their offices. Then there are the ones who wanted to spend a little more money. Four ministers spent between $12,000 and $19,000 on their new offices. Then you have those at the head of the pack. Here are the ministers who spent the most money on setting up their offices.
In third place is the Minister of Foreign Affairs, who spent $40,000 to refit his office. In second place is the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, who spent $57,000 on his office. In first place, the big winner is the Minister of Infrastructure, who spent $835,000 on his new office.
When I wrote my speech, the results were not yet official since the other ministers had lodged a protest, claiming that the minister was on spending steroids. They thought that he had cheated and padded the numbers. How is it possible to spend $835,000 on a single office?
Unfortunately, I have the official results here, which come from officials in the minister's department. A total of $835,000 was indeed spent to set up an office. According to what we learned today in question period, it might have been two, three, four, or even 32 offices.
We questioned the Minister of Infrastructure a number of times about how much was spent to set up his office. He said several times again this evening, with his hand on his heart, that the reason why he spent $835,000 was that there was no infrastructure minister in the previous government and therefore no office.
First of all, there was a minister responsible for infrastructure and that minister also had an office. The minister should also know that previously, there were at least eight additional ministers and so there were eight office spaces with furnishings for the staff of eight ministers' offices. That is a lot of ministers' offices that became available after the last election.
Why did the Minister of Infrastructure not take advantage of the eight completely furnished offices that were available and ready to receive staff? Was it because of vanity? Was it because those offices were not good enough for the minister? If there are at least 10 employees per minister's office, that means that in terms of office equipment alone, there were 80 desks, 80 computers and monitors, 80 chairs, and 80 telephones available to the new Minister of Infrastructure.
I do not understand the minister's decision given that his new department has not even announced a single construction site for this summer. There is nothing to stimulate the economy. There is nothing this summer for cities that are still waiting to find out when they can invest the money that was promised during the election campaign. The only thing that was announced was this big project to set up a new office for 32 people at a cost of $26,000 per employee.
Unfortunately, that is not all. When the associate deputy minister of Infrastructure Canada appeared before the Standing Committee on Transport, she told us that setting up her offices and hiring staff for this “new” department would cost taxpayers an additional $10.2 million. How many employees for that $10 million? The deputy minister said 20. Twenty employees for an extra $10.2 million. Some quick math says that is $500,000 per employee.
The deputy minister did not want to leave us with that impression. She quickly added that the money would be used primarily for computer systems and other expenses. I asked for a breakdown of those expenses at committee, but I still have not received anything. We still do not know how much of that $10.2 million will be used to further refurbish the offices of the minister and deputy minister, at $835,000 a pop. We need to get these answers. That is why we oppose this part of the budget.
In closing, I have a suggestion as to how the minister can quickly and effectively treat this acute case of spendicitis: have a look at the Government of Canada's auction website, GCSurplus.ca. Here is some of the furniture I found that could be used to furnish the minister's office: 16 full work stations with 33 office chairs for $550; five filing cabinets for $20; 58 cabinets for $100; two bookshelves for $20; a shredder for $100; 28 conference tables for $100, since they are so fond of meetings and consultation; an executive desk with a cabinet for the minister for $50; an executive suite with desk for $100; 12 bookshelves for $115; six briefcases for $10; 80 telephones, in case they are busy, for just $750; 13 tables, two printers, and a photocopier for $95, after some quick math.
There were no computers, so I checked Kijiji and found 10 computers for $2,000. If they need three times more, that would be $6,000 for computers. It was a little harder to find 10 monitors. I had to check another site. I will not advertise for that site, but I found monitors for just $100. That adds up to just $33,000. To furnish the minister's office and meet all of his needs with respect to meetings and consultations in the coming years, that adds up to $10,960 for an office that can accommodate 32 people, not the $835,000 the minister put in for.
Rather than worry about the colour of the walls, the minister should hurry up and find a way to put Canadians to work by announcing projects for the summer as his party promised during the election campaign. That is why we will oppose the budgets allocated for the minister's new offices.
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