Interventions in Committee
 
 
 
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View Nick Whalen Profile
Lib. (NL)
Thank you very much, Mr. Chair.
I also wanted to pass along some thanks to the interpreters in the booth, the technical folks and the staff who sit behind us and prepare us for these meetings. This wouldn't be able to happen without you.
Minister, this is a great week for Canada. I'm really excited about the prospect of Trans Mountain. You've been a leader in our party not only on the infrastructure file, but since you've taken over this very delicate but economically vital matter of twinning of the Trans Mountain pipeline. You've been a very steady hand at the wheel.
I just want to get a sense from you of how important it is not only to you personally but also to Albertans to have this significant victory in finally getting an opportunity to triple the capacity of this pipeline.
View Nick Whalen Profile
Lib. (NL)
Thank you very much, Minister.
In your opening remarks, you chastised the Conservatives for wanting to do appeals and for taking the legislative route. I must admit that I was also nervous about the path that had been chosen. You and the Minister of Finance convinced me that it was the right way and, of course, I guess now I have to admit that I was wrong on this and you were right, so congratulations on that.
I also have found that some of the opposition rhetoric on this project—including at today's meeting, when the member suggested that somehow we should have begun the process of obtaining permits and entering into construction contracts prior to the completion of the process—demonstrates a fundamental misunderstanding of how this process is meant to work. How irresponsible would it have been to prejudge the outcome or to have rushed this court-required and constitutionally required process?
View Nick Whalen Profile
Lib. (NL)
I'm sorry, Mr. Minister, but were all those decisions and mistakes that were highlighted in the Federal Court of Appeal decision made when the Conservatives where in power?
View Nick Whalen Profile
Lib. (NL)
We've had a lot of difficulty until very recently on clearing exploratory drilling on the east coast, and of course we have the injunction on TMX. Bill C-69 seems to achieve the right balance and seems to push us beyond the mistakes that existed in CEAA 2012 to ensure these types of mistakes don't happen again. Are you confident that's the case?
View Nick Whalen Profile
Lib. (NL)
We were very excited to see that completed in December to provide an off-ramp from exploratory drilling and massive environmental assessments on a well-by-well basis. That's a great initiative from your and Minister McKenna's departments.
Another concern that's been expressed to me is that we want to make sure the Canadian building trades have access to as much of the work on the Trans Mountain expansion as possible. I know there are different thresholds and limits in other projects. How can we ensure that Canadian workers benefit as much as possible from this megaproject?
View Nick Whalen Profile
Lib. (NL)
As a final very short question, there's been some scuttlebutt at the table here about whether or not a constitutional right is implicated in this process. I'm perhaps not as close to this issue as you are, but do you feel that the section 35 rights of indigenous peoples are implicated by the expansion, and was that something that we were trying to make sure we got right with Bill C-69?
View Nick Whalen Profile
Lib. (NL)
Welcome, everyone.
I call to order the 167th meeting of the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration. This is very likely our last meeting before Parliament rises, which is expected to happen this week.
I'd like to welcome a couple of new members to our committee today, temporary members Don Rusnak and Linda Lapointe.
Don, I'd like to thank you for your four years in Parliament. I understand you're not seeking re-election, but thank you for your service.
We'll begin with an opening statement by the departmental officials here to brief us today on the rural and northern immigration pilot, followed by normal rounds of questioning.
I understand there may be interruptions over the course of the next half-hour. We might be seeking unanimous consent to continue to pose questions to the witnesses until the time to vote, so that all parties will have an opportunity to participate in the debate.
Without further ado, I'd like to welcome Natasha Kim, Lara Dyer and Corinne Prince.
Ms. Kim, please proceed.
View Nick Whalen Profile
Lib. (NL)
Thank you very much, Ms. Kim.
Mr. Tabbara.
View Nick Whalen Profile
Lib. (NL)
You have about 30 seconds, Mr. Tabbara.
Are you sharing your time with Ms. Zahid?
View Nick Whalen Profile
Lib. (NL)
I think we'll probably have an opportunity to get through 20 minutes of questions, and maybe another 10 minutes after that.
View Nick Whalen Profile
Lib. (NL)
I'm not sure if it's possible.
Is the templates for the MOUs prepared for our review?
View Nick Whalen Profile
Lib. (NL)
Very briefly, please.
View Nick Whalen Profile
Lib. (NL)
Thank you, Mr. Maguire.
Ms. Kwan.
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