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View Kevin Lamoureux Profile
Lib. (MB)
Thank you.
I actually appreciate the opportunity to come here today, as I suspect that a great deal of discussion has taken place in all of our ridings across the country, from coast to coast to coast, since Canadians are, in fact, quite concerned about what is taking place and what has been taking place in Ottawa over the last number of months.
In the past we attempted to deal with this, even prior to the House adjourning, or taking a recess, back in June. As members would know, it was the leader of the Liberal Party who brought forward four motions of substance. We attempted to get those passed. They are now referred to in the letter that Mr. Cullen has brought forward. I think it is important to note just how those motions, had they been passed, would have resolved a lot of concerns that many Canadians have today.
Unfortunately—and the record will show this—it was the New Democrats who actually prevented the motions from passing in the first place. So, on the one hand, we're glad to be here: we want to see changes. We want more transparency. We want those things, because we know that Canadians want them and are demanding them. We have seen strong leadership within our own party with regard to coming up with ideas on how we will be able to do just that.
I really believe that one of the first things we as a committee should do on this agenda—given the fact that back in June there appeared to be just a minority of New Democrats who were uncomfortable with the motions proposed by the Liberal Party—is to review those motions put forward by Mr. Trudeau and get the unanimous support of the committee. I think that would be a reasonable thing to ask. We've had the opportunity to review the motions. Everyone has had a copy of them, Mr. Chair. People are familiar with them. We would be doing a great service to Canadians if people would agree to let those motions pass.
Whether it passes unanimously today or not—and I will ask for that, Mr. Chair—as much as that would be great to see, I can tell you that we as a caucus are prepared to do it. We are committed, because we recognize what Canadians want us to do, and we're prepared to demonstrate that through leadership and to implement certain aspects of it ourselves. The question is to what degree other members are as well. I suspect that all members have had the opportunity to canvass their constituents and to find out that there should be support.
Mr. Chair, I'm not entirely sure of the proper procedure, but I am going to ask if you could canvass to see whether, in fact, there would be unanimous support for the four motions that were brought forward by Mr. Trudeau back on June 10.
I can quickly read them, Mr. Chair.
Mr. Trudeau moved:that the Board of Internal Economy begin posting the travel and hospitality expenses—
View Kevin Lamoureux Profile
Lib. (MB)
With your assistance then, Mr. Chair, I would be interested in moving that as an amendment to the motion that Mr. Lukiwski has brought forward, if I can do that.
View Kevin Lamoureux Profile
Lib. (MB)
I think a big part of it, Tom, is recognizing—which I wasn't too sure of in terms of the most appropriate way of bringing it forward in the form of an amendment—that what we're looking for is just getting the recognition from all three political parties that these suggestions or motions that were brought forward back on June 10 are very tangible and whether in fact they're supported by all political parties.
Now, it might not necessarily be appropriate as an amendment. That's why I was looking to see if we could get the unanimous support of the committee to at least acknowledge their existence and in fact support them, because what we're talking about is not studying them per se, but rather adopting them.
View Kevin Lamoureux Profile
Lib. (MB)
Okay. On that particular point, then, Mr. Chair, I appreciate your comments and I'll look forward to maybe a more appropriate time, when we could actually have some dialogue on the four motions that were brought forward by Mr. Trudeau.
View Kevin Lamoureux Profile
Lib. (MB)
Yes. I was hopeful that maybe we'd be able to draw some conclusions if possible, at least before the end of the day, so that we would have something tangible prior to the end of the meeting. I will hold off on providing more comments in regard to those particular motions, but suffice it to say that we're glad to be here today. We're anxious to see some movement in this area. We'll have to wait and see where it goes.
Thank you.
View Kevin Lamoureux Profile
Lib. (MB)
I note that December 2 is the final date—
View Kevin Lamoureux Profile
Lib. (MB)
—that's being suggested. Nothing prevents us from actually reporting a little earlier than December 2, if this gets done.
I don't see anything wrong with our trying to organize meetings for this September going into October. I don't think we have to wait until we're back in session, necessarily. We are going to get prorogued by the looks of it.
I would be open to setting some actual dates if we could, Mr. Chair. I think there would be a great benefit for us in terms of a planning perspective and from a witness perspective. We're here to set an agenda. I'm prepared to open up the calendar and see if we can set some dates.
View Kevin Lamoureux Profile
Lib. (MB)
I've only served on one committee, the immigration and citizenship committee. I know that when we set our agenda, Mr. Chair, what would often happen—not often, but always—was that there were government witnesses, official opposition witnesses, and third party witnesses, and it was determined in terms of what sort of numbers we were looking at.
This is the appropriate time and place for us to be able to talk about those numbers. That then allows you to get a sense of what sort of time is going to be required to do the review. I don't believe that we have to wait indefinitely for you as the chair or for the government to come back and say that we're going to have x number of witnesses. I think now is the most appropriate time to try to resolve that if we can.
How many government witnesses do you yourself expect to have, Tom?
View Robert Sopuck Profile
CPC (MB)
Was there ever a time when lobster stocks collapsed, and if so, what was done to rebuild the stocks?
View Robert Sopuck Profile
CPC (MB)
I think that's a remarkable record, because fish stocks can collapse and rebound. We had that incredible resurgence of sockeye salmon in 2010 in the Fraser after a decade of low fish numbers, so I find it remarkable that the department really doesn't have a record of any time when the stocks collapsed.
View Robert Sopuck Profile
CPC (MB)
This strikes me as a remarkably easy species to manage compared to open-ocean pelagic fish. I think that's one of the reasons that they're doing so well.
Could you expand more on what affects year-class strength in lobsters? They do fluctuate, you pointed out, but what's the guessing as to what causes those fluctuations?
View Pat Martin Profile
NDP (MB)
View Pat Martin Profile
2013-06-18 10:59
Good morning, ladies and gentleman. We'll convene our meeting of the Standing Committee on Government Operations and Estimates.
As one aspect of our mandate, we not only review the planned expenditures of various government departments and their estimates, but we also review the statutory programs. One of the recommendations made in a recent study we did as a committee was to do a better job of oversight as a committee; to commit to review all significant statutory spending at least once every four or eight years, I believe it was. Obviously, it's difficult to do more than that.
We're very pleased. This is the first attempt to provide this additional scrutiny to some of the statutory spending undertaken by the government, so we're very pleased today to welcome very much a blue ribbon panel dealing with the public service pension plan.
We're joined by representatives from the Treasury Board Secretariat: Ms. Kim Gowing, director of the pension and benefits sector; and Ernest Meszaros, senior adviser, pension and benefits sector.
Welcome, Ms. Gowing and Mr. Meszaros.
We also have, from the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions, Jean-Claude Ménard, chief actuary.
Welcome, Mr. Ménard.
We also have Public Sector Pension Investment Board representatives Martin Leroux and Mark Boutet. I'll let them introduce their positions.
I understand that all three groups will have brief opening statements. I hope we have time for a thorough go-round to ask questions.
Proceeding in the order that we have them on our agenda, we'll invite Ms. Gowing, the director of the pension and benefits sector of the Treasury Board Secretariat, to make opening remarks.
Welcome, Ms. Gowing.
View Pat Martin Profile
NDP (MB)
View Pat Martin Profile
2013-06-18 11:08
Thank you, Ms. Gowing.
We'll invite Jean-Claude Ménard from the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions to speak.
Mr. Ménard.
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