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View Anthony Rota Profile
Lib. (ON)

Question No. 2--
Mr. Tom Kmiec:
With regard to the public consultation for the new five-dollar banknote launched by the Minister of Finance and the Governor of the Bank of Canada on January 29, 2020 (which ended on March 11, 2020): (a) how many nomination submissions were made nominating a Canadian to appear on the next five-dollar banknote; (b) of the nomination submissions made for a Canadian to appear on the next five-dollar banknote, what names were submitted for consideration; (c) of the names listed in (b), how many nominations did each name receive; (d) based on the analytics software installed or run on the Bank of Canada website and server, how many individuals visited the consultation form listed on the Bank of Canada website between January 29, 2020, and March 11, 2020?
Response
Hon. Chrystia Freeland (Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with regard to part (a), the Bank of Canada received 52,971 names during the January 29 to March 11, 2020, public call for nominations, resulting in 625 qualified submissions.
With regard to part (b), the 625 qualified nominees can be found at the following link: https://www.bankofcanada.ca/banknotes/banknoteable-5/nominees/.
With regard to part (c), the information is unavailable. The Bank of Canada does not collect information on the number of nominations received for each name.
With regard to part (d), the information is unavailable. The consultation form is not hosted on the Bank of Canada's website. However, the bank can report that 44,485 individuals submitted one or more names to the public call for nominations between January 29, 2020, to March 11, 2020.

Question No. 5--
Mr. Marty Morantz:
With regard to the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy: (a) what is the number of employers who have received the subsidy; (b) what is the breakdown of (a) by (i) sector, (ii) province; (c) what are the total government expenditures to date through the subsidy; and (d) what is the breakdown of (c) by (i) sector, (ii) province?
Response
Hon. Diane Lebouthillier (Minister of National Revenue, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with respect to the above-noted question, parts (a) to (c), the latest information on the total amount of the Canada emergency wage subsidy expended is available on the Government of Canada website under “Claims to Date–CEWS” at https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/subsidy/emergency-wage-subsidy/cews-statistics.html.
The CRA captures CEWS information regarding the total approved claims broken down by province or territory where the applicant resides, by industry sector and by size of applicant, by period beginning in May 2020, rather than in the manner requested above. The latest information, updated on a monthly basis, is available on the Government of Canada website under “CEWS Claims–Detailed Data” at https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/subsidy/emergency-wage-subsidy/cews-statistics/stats-detailed.html.

Question No. 15--
Mr. Tim Uppal:
With regard to government contracts entered into by the member of the Queen's Privy Council for Canada responsible for the Canadian International Development Agency, for the acquisition of architectural, engineering or other services required in respect of the planning, design, preparation or supervision of an international development assistance program or project valued between $98,000.00 and $99,999.99, signed since January 1, 2016, and broken down by department, agency, Crown corporation or other government entity: (a) what is the total value of all such contracts; and (b) what are the details of all such contracts, including (i) vendor, (ii) amount, (iii) date, (iv) description of services or construction contracts, (v) file number?
Response
Hon. Karina Gould (Minister of International Development, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the following reflects a consolidated response approved on behalf of Global Affairs Canada ministers.
With regard to parts (a) and (b), with regard to government contracts valued between $98,000 and $99,999.99, signed since January 1, 2016, the department’s delegation of financial and contracting signing authority delegates officers appointed to specific positions the authority to purchase services, in accordance with all applicable legislation, regulations, policies and directives.
Information on contracts for the time period requested is available under “Proactive Disclosure” at Open Government, https://open.canada.ca/en.

Question No. 16--
Mr. Kelly McCauley:
With regard to the Atlantic Raven and the Atlantic Eagle: (a) how many Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) personnel are stationed on each ship by full-time equivalents; (b) how many hours per day while at sea are CCG personnel stationed on each ship; and (c) what are the costs for CCG personnel stationed on the tugs?
Response
Hon. Bernadette Jordan (Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the following information is for the time period of October 1, 2018, to September 30, 2020.
With regard to part (a), the number of Canadian Coast Guard personnel on board both Atlantic Raven and Atlantic Eagle varies per patrol. There are between one and six CCG employees stationed on each ship for a total of 3976.5 person-days or 10.9 person-years, to date.
With regard to part (b), each CCG employee lives on board and holds a twelve-hour shift while on board.
With regard to part (c), to date the Canadian Coast Guard has paid $206,778 on meals and quarters, and $294,620 on salaries for a total cost of $496,330 while CCG personnel are stationed on the tugs.

Question No. 17--
Mr. Kelly McCauley:
With regard to personal protective equipment purchases since March 13, 2020: (a) what amount of supplies were ordered and prepaid for; (b) of the supplies in (a), how many units have yet to be received; (c) what amount of N95 or KN95 masks were ordered but deemed unacceptable by the Public Health Agency of Canada; (d) what was the dollar value associated with the masks mentioned in (c); (e) of the supplies in (c), were associated prepayment costs reimbursed to the buyer and if so, how much; (f) what is the dollar amount associated with each contract signed for N95, KN95, and surgical masks to date; and (g) what was the total prepaid to vendors for which no supplies were received or are not expected to be received?
Response
Mr. Steven MacKinnon (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Services and Procurement, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, since March, the Government of Canada has been engaged in an unprecedented effort to acquire supplies and equipment to ensure that our front-line health care workers, other essential services workers and Canadians stay safe and healthy. Throughout this pandemic, there has been a surge in global demand for the personal protective equipment, PPE, and medical supplies needed in response to COVID-19. As a result, the government has operated in a highly competitive market and faced risks posed by fragile international supply chains.
With regard to part (a), approximately 40% of PPE contracts have included a component of advanced payments. Such arrangements were necessary to ensure that Canada could secure access to supplies amidst intense international competition.
With regard to part (b), the most recent update on quantities ordered and received is available on PSPC's website at https://www.tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca/comm/aic-scr/provisions-supplies-eng.html.
The quantities ordered for personal protective equipment and medical supplies are intended to meet short-term needs and anticipate Canada’s long-term needs as we continue to respond to COVID-19, while preparing for any eventuality over the coming months. “Quantities received” includes the approximate number of products that have been shipped and are in transit or have arrived at a Government of Canada warehouse. Some contracts are multi-year in nature with delivery scheduled beyond March 2021.
The information released will be adjusted over time as the procurement environment evolves.
With regard to part (c), a total of 9.5 million KN95 respirators did not meet Government of Canada technical specifications for healthcare settings.
With regard to part (d), in order to support the negotiating position of the Government of Canada, this information cannot presently be disclosed.
With regard to part (e), negotiations are still taking place between the Government of Canada and the supplier.
With regard to part (f), as part of our commitment to transparency and accountability, we are publicly disclosing contracting information to the fullest extent possible. Supplier names and contract amounts for contracts entered into on behalf of other government departments for PPE and medical or laboratory equipment and supplies can be found on our COVID-19 contracting information page at https://www.tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca/comm/aic-scr/contrats-contracts-eng.html. The information released will be adjusted over time as the procurement environment evolves.
With regard to part (g), all suppliers are expected to deliver on their contracts.

Question No. 19--
Mr. Kelly McCauley:
With regard to the COVID-19 Supply Council: what are the costs associated with the council, broken down by (i) salary top-ups and or additional pay for an individual sitting on the council, (ii) hospitality expenses, (iii) travel expenses broken down by type, (iv) in-person meeting facilities, (v) service reimbursements like Internet expenses, taxi or Uber costs, (vi) per diem expenses, (vii) incidentals?
Response
Mr. Steven MacKinnon (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Services and Procurement, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, as of September 23, 2020, there have been no costs associated with the COVID-19 supply council. Members volunteer their time and meetings are held by video conference.

Question No. 33--
Mr. Damien C. Kurek:
With regard to the government’s decision not to exclude costs associated with grain drying from the carbon tax: (a) why did the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food say that the impact of these costs on farmers is “not that significant”, and what specific evidence does the minister have to back up this claim; (b) what is the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food’s definition of “not that significant”; (c) what are the government’s estimates on how much revenue will be received yearly from the carbon tax on grain drying, for each of the next five years; and (d) has Farm Credit Canada conducted any analysis or studies on the impact of this tax on the income of farmers, and, if so, what were the findings of any such analysis or studies?
Response
Hon. Marie-Claude Bibeau (Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, regarding part (a), according to data provided by provincial governments and industry groups, the estimated cost of carbon pollution pricing associated with grain drying increases the costs of farm operations by between 0.05% and 0.38% for an average farm.
Costs of drying grain will vary depending upon farm size, location, province, fuel used, grain type and other factors. Costs will also vary from year to year, with 2019 being wetter than usual in many provinces and, therefore, translating into higher than normal grain drying expenditures.
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, AAFC, obtained estimates of the cost of drying grains, which have either been publicly released or which have been provided to AAFC by external sources, including producer organizations and provincial governments.
Each of these groups arrived at estimates of the cost of grain drying and of carbon pollution pricing associated with this activity using different underlying assumptions, which makes direct comparisons difficult. AAFC standardized the various estimates to arrive at more comparable results. For grain and oilseed farms, the average per-farm cost of carbon pollution pricing associated with grain drying was $210 in Alberta, $774 in Saskatchewan, $467 in Manitoba and $750 in Ontario.
Note that the analysis received from Alberta was based on their estimates of what the carbon pollution price would cost in the province. On June 1, 2019, Alberta repealed their own provincial carbon price fuel levy, and the federal fuel charge came into force on January 1, 2020. Therefore, Alberta farmers did not pay a federal carbon pollution price on their fuels used for grain drying during harvest in 2019.
AAFC provided further context to these estimates by relating them to information on net operating expenses. To do this, AAFC calculated the share of the cost of carbon pollution pricing associated with grain drying to overall net operating expenses for an average farm in each of the four provinces mentioned above. Net operating costs refer to all expenses, other than financing expenses and income taxes, incurred in the normal course of business, including cost of goods sold, selling and administrative expenses, and all other operating expenses. Data on net operating expenses was obtained from Statistics Canada’s agricultural taxation data program, or ATDP, which includes unincorporated and incorporated tax filer records used to estimate a range of financial agricultural variables. The financial variables disseminated by the ATDP include detailed farm revenues and expenses as well as farm and off-farm income of farm families.
Relating the estimates above to the value of net operating costs implies that the average per-farm cost of carbon pollution pricing associated with grain drying in 2019 was 0.05% of net operating costs in Alberta, 0.18% in Saskatchewan, 0.10% in Manitoba and 0.38% in Ontario.
Some variation still remains despite standardization. The estimates for Alberta and Saskatchewan are based on historical averages and, therefore, could be considered estimates for an average year in those provinces. The estimates for Manitoba and Ontario are based on 2019, a wet year, and therefore could be considered estimates for a year with higher-than-normal moisture levels.
AAFC assessed the costs of the federal carbon pollution pricing fuel charge in 2018. That assessment is publicly available at: https://multimedia.agr.gc.ca/pack/pdf/carbon_price_presentation-eng.pdf.
Regarding part (b), the above results show that the estimated costs of carbon pollution pricing to oilseed and grain farms amount to less than 0.5% of net operating expenses for 2019. This is for a hypothetical average farm. The financial impact on individual farms will depend on a myriad of factors, including the quantity of grain harvested, the type of grain produced, the share of grain drying done on farm versus at the elevator, the fuel used in grain drying, prices of fuel and the moisture level of crop at harvest, among other individual farm factors.
In addition, the agriculture sector receives significant relief under the federal carbon pollution pricing system compared to other sectors of the economy. The federal carbon pollution pricing system includes relief for farm activities that represents a significant part of the total cost of production that would otherwise impact their competitiveness. Thus, gasoline and diesel fuel used by farmers for agricultural activities is exempt from the fuel charge, and biological emissions, for example, from livestock, manure and fertilizer application, are not priced. Recognizing that greenhouse heating fuel consumption for year-round operations represents a significant cost of production, the system also provides significant relief of 80% for natural gas and propane used by commercial greenhouse operators. Natural gas and propane use for heating, for barns and grain drying, are not exempted under the federal fuel charge as it was not considered a significant cost of production for an average grain and oilseed farm.
Regarding part (c), the purpose of the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by ensuring that carbon pollution pricing applies broadly throughout Canada.
All direct proceeds from the federal carbon pollution pricing system are returned to the jurisdiction of origin. In Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta, the majority of the direct proceeds from the federal fuel charge are returned directly to households through climate action incentive payments.
AAFC assessed the costs of the federal carbon pollution pricing fuel charge in 2018. That assessment is publicly available at https://multimedia.agr.gc.ca/pack/pdf/carbon_price_presentation-eng.pdf.
Regarding part (d), Farm Credit Canada has not conducted analysis or studies on the impact of the carbon pollution pricing on the income of farmers.

Question No. 35--
Mr. Dan Albas:
With regard to the government's 2019 election commitment to plant 2 billion trees: (a) how many trees have been planted to date; (b) what is the breakdown of the number of trees planted to date by (i) province, (ii) municipality or geographical location; (c) what are the total expenditures to date related to the tree planting project; and (d) what is the breakdown of (c) by item or type of expenditure?
Response
Mr. Paul Lefebvre (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the Government of Canada is fully committed to delivering on its commitment to plant two billion trees over the next 10 years.
At this time, Natural Resources Canada is working closely with other government departments, including Environment and Climate Change Canada, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, and Parks Canada Agency to develop a comprehensive approach for implementing the government’s plan to plant two billion trees. The government is also collaborating with provinces and territories, municipalities, indigenous partners and communities, non-governmental organizations, industry, the private sector, landowners, researchers and other stakeholders to move this initiative forward.
Existing federal programs are already supporting tree planting, with approximately 150 million seedlings expected to be planted by 2022 through the low carbon economy fund, working with provinces and territories, as well as trees planted through the disaster mitigation and adaptation fund, working with communities. The Government of Canada also continues to support the Highway of Heroes tree campaign, which has planted more than 750,000 of a planned two million trees between Trenton and Toronto.
As part of its commitment to supporting Canada’s forests and forest sector, the Government of Canada took early action in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic by providing up to $30 million to small and medium-sized forest sector firms, including tree planting operations, to defray the costs associated with COVID-19 health and safety measures. This funding helped ensure a successful 2020 tree planting season and the planting of an estimated 600 million trees, while protecting workers and communities.
The Government of Canada is also adapting the investing in Canada infrastructure program to respond to the impacts of COVID-19. The program, delivered through bilateral agreements with provinces and territories, is being adjusted to add some flexibilities, expand project eligibility and accelerate approvals. A new temporary COVID-19 resilience stream, with over $3 billion available in existing funding, has been created to provide provinces and territories with added flexibility to fund quick-start, short-term projects that might not otherwise be eligible under the existing funding streams. The new stream will support projects such as: disaster mitigation and adaptation projects, including natural infrastructure; flood and fire mitigation; and tree planting and related infrastructure.

Question No. 46--
Mr. Kenny Chiu:
With regard to Global Affairs Canada (GAC) and Canadians living in Hong Kong: (a) how many Canadian citizens or permanent residents are currently registered as living in Hong Kong; (b) how many Canadian citizens or permanent residents has GAC confirmed are currently in Hong Kong; (c) what is the government’s best estimate of the total number of Canadian citizens and permanent residents currently residing in Hong Kong; and (d) on what date and what data did the government use to come up with the number in (c)?
Response
Hon. François-Philippe Champagne (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the following reflects a consolidated response approved on behalf of Global Affairs Canada ministers.
Regarding parts (a) to (d), presently, there are 4,208 Canadians who have registered with the voluntary registration of Canadians abroad service in Hong Kong. As registration with the service is voluntary, this is not a complete picture of the total number of Canadians in Hong Kong.
Global Affairs Canada does not maintain statistics on the total number of Canadian citizens or permanent residents in a specific country or territory. According to a survey led in 2011 by the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada, an estimated 295,930 Canadians were living in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region at that time.

Question No. 48--
Mr. Robert Kitchen:
With regard to revenue collected from the federal carbon tax: (a) excluding any rebates, what is the total amount of revenue collected by the government from the carbon tax or price on carbon since January 1, 2017; (b) what is the breakdown of (a) by (i) year, (ii) province; (c) what is the total amount of GST collected on the carbon tax since January 1, 2017; and (d) what is the breakdown of (c) by (i) year, (ii) province?
Response
Hon. Chrystia Freeland (Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, pursuant to section 270 of the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act, GGPPA, the Minister of the Environment must table a report in Parliament annually with respect to the administration of the act. The inaugural edition of the “GGPPA Annual Report” is expected to be published in December 2020, including details of proceeds collected and how they were disbursed.
Under the GGPPA, the federal carbon pollution pricing system has two parts: a regulatory charge on fuel, or federal fuel charge; and a regulatory trading system for industry, the federal output-based pricing system, OBPS.
Consumers do not pay the fuel charge directly to the federal government. Fuel producers and distributors are generally required to pay the fuel charge and, as a result, the price paid by consumers on goods and services would usually have the costs of the fuel charge embedded. Registered OBPS industrial facilities will not generally pay the fuel charge on fuels that they purchase. Instead, OBPS facilities are subject to the carbon pollution price on the portion of emissions above a facility emissions limit. The GGPPA requires that the direct proceeds from carbon pricing be returned to the jurisdiction of origin.
With respect to reporting on the federal fuel charge, the “GGPPA Annual Report” will include a financial summary of fuel charge proceeds assessed, by province and territory, for the first full year that the fuel charge was in effect, April 1, 2019 to March 31, 2020. During this period, the federal fuel charge applied at a rate of $20 per tonne, as of April 1, 2019, in Ontario, New Brunswick, Manitoba and Saskatchewan; as of July 1, 2019, in Yukon and Nunavut; and, as of January 1, 2020, in Alberta. The federal government has proposed to stand down the federal fuel charge in New Brunswick, as of April 1, 2020, as the province introduced a provincial tax on carbon-emitting products that meets the federal benchmark stringency requirements.
The OBPS came into effect January 1, 2019. Unlike the fuel charge, however, assessments are done on an annual basis. Due to the impact of COVID-19 on reporting, the government extended the due date for reporting under the OBPS system in respect of the 2019 compliance year from June 1, 2020 to October 1, 2020. The final assessed values of proceeds due to the OBPS for this first compliance year, therefore, are not expected to be available until after the publication of the first edition of the “GGPPA Annual Report”.
The question requests information since January 1, 2017. No proceeds would arise from either the OBPS or federal fuel charge in calendar years 2017 or 2018, as these two systems did not come into effect until January 1, 2019 and April 1, 2019, respectively.
With respect to the goods and services tax, GST, the GST is levied on the final amount charged for a good or service. Under the GST, businesses are required to report and remit to the Canada Revenue Agency the total amount of GST collected on all goods and services they supply during a reporting period and do not report the GST collected in respect of specific goods and services or embedded costs.

Question No. 61--
Mr. Gord Johns:
With regard to the approximately 20,000 Atlantic salmon that escaped from the Robertson Island pen fire on December 20, 2019: (a) how many of the fish were reported recaptured to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) by Mowi ASA as of February 20, 2020; (b) how many independent reports of caught Atlantic salmon were reported to the DFO, broken down by date and location of catch; (c) how many of the escaped fish were infected with Piscine orthoreovirus; (d) how much funding has the government provided to assist with recapture; and (e) how much compensation has the government provided to Mowi ASA?
Response
Hon. Bernadette Jordan (Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with regard to (a), most of the salmon were removed from the pens prior to the escape event, and the rest of the farm was harvested following the fire. Mowi recovered and harvested 1,177 fish from within the predator netting at the Robertson Island site following the incident. Mowi did not recapture any escaped Atlantic salmon that left the site. It is widely believed that the escaped fish have been eaten by sea lions and other predators in the area. As per the company’s condition of licence, the reporting of the fish escape to DFO occurred within 24 of the discovery event.
With regard to (b), there have been no reports of recaptured fish. At the request of the ‘Namgis First Nation, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, DFO, issued a scientific licence for up to three gillnets to recapture escaped Atlantic salmon from December 26 to December 29, 2019. Despite these efforts, no Atlantic salmon or other fish were caught during that time. Subsequently, the ‘Namgis First Nation requested another scientific licence to continue recapture efforts. This licence was issued from December 30, 2019 to January 3, 2020. However, no fish were recaptured.
With regard to (c), it is unknown whether any of the escaped fish were infected with Piscine orthoreovirus, PRV.
With regard to (d), the federal government has not provided any funding to assist with the recapture. However, DFO regional staff have engaged Mowi and stakeholders in the area to develop a strategic coordinated plan for monitoring.
With regard to (e), the federal government has not provided any compensation to Mowi pertaining to this escape event.

Question No. 63--
Mr. Ben Lobb:
With regard to the government's ethical apparel policy PN-132 and contract clause A3008C, since November 4, 2015: (a) how many times has the contract clause been breached by companies doing business with the government; (b) what are the details of each instance where a breach occurred, including (i) the date that the government advised the vendor that they were in breach, (ii) vendor, (iii) brand names involved, (iv) summary of breach; (c) for each instance in (b), did the government terminate the contract or issue a financial penalty to the vendor, and, if so, what are the details and amounts of the penalties; (d) how many investigations have been conducted to ensure compliance with PN-132, and, of those, how many vendors were found to be (i) in compliance, (ii) not in compliance; (e) does the policy consider ethical procurement certification for contracting below the first-tier subcontractor level; (f) what specific measures has the government taken, if any, to ensure that all vendors, including any contractors or sub­contractors of such vendors, are in compliance with the policy; (g) what specific measures, if any, has the government taken to ensure that any products produced by forced labour camps, and specifically the forced Uyghur labour camps in China, are not purchased by the government; (h) what is the government's policy, if it has one, in relation to the termination of contracts in cases where a second-, third-, or any level below the first-tier subcontractor are found to be noncompliant with PN-132; (i) what is the total number of employees or full-time equivalents assigned to ensure compliance with the ethical apparel policy; and (j) for each employee in (i), what percentage of their job has been assigned to investigate or ensure compliance?
Response
Hon. François-Philippe Champagne (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the following reflects a consolidated response approved on behalf of Global Affairs Canada ministers. With regard to parts (a) to (d), presently, there are 4,208 Canadians who have registered with the voluntary registration of Canadians abroad service in Hong Kong. As registration with the service is voluntary, this is not a complete picture of the total number of Canadians in Hong Kong.
Global Affairs Canada does not maintain statistics on the total number of Canadians citizens or permanent residents in a specific country or territory.
According to a survey led in 2011 by the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada, an estimated 295,930 Canadians were living in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, SAR, at that time.

Question No. 64--
Mr. Ben Lobb:
With regard to what the Prime Minister describes as the "due diligence" conducted by government officials in relation to the original decision to have the WE organization or WE Charity administer the Canada Student Service Grant (CSSG): (a) how many officials were involved in conducting the due diligence; (b) who conducted the due diligence; (c) who was in charge of overseeing the due diligence process; (d) did the due diligence process examine WE's recent corporate governance or financial issues; (e) if the answer to (d) is affirmative, why did the officials still recommend that WE be chosen to administer the CSSG; (f) if the answer to (d) is negative, why were such issues not examined in the due diligence process; and (g) on what date did the due diligence process in relation to WE (i) begin, (ii) end?
Response
Mr. Irek Kusmierczyk (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, officials from ESDC explained in several appearances before the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance that contribution agreements are regularly used by the government to further policy objectives and engage a wide diversity of skills and resources outside the government.
ESDC began discussions in early May 2020 with WE Charity. Prior to entering into the contribution agreement, ESDC assessed the organization’s eligibility and capacity to deliver a project against the terms and conditions of a program or initiative and the policy objectives and parameters of the Canada student service grant, CSSG; considered WE Charity’s standing, including its completion of projects, results achieved and good financial standing on previous projects, by reviewing past projects where WE Charity received funding for project delivery from ESDC; and articulated clauses in the contribution agreement on accountability and results to mitigate any risks associated with the project development.
ESDC also outlined financial controls in the contribution agreement to govern the organization’s appropriate use of funds, by including the following: payment clauses to advance funds based on project activities and to minimize the potential of overpayment; interest clauses requiring that any interest earned be either directed towards the project or returned to the Crown; repayment clauses governing the return of ineligible expenditures or funds that were not used for the project; project records, reporting and audit clauses holding the funding recipient accountable, allowing the department to track project progress, document results, provide financial accounting and track compliance; and a requirement for audited financial statements to reconcile expenditures at the end of the project.
Given the nature and amount of the agreement, due diligence was performed at all levels by employees and management within the skills and employment branch, program operations branch, chief financial officer branch and legal services branch within ESDC from the time negotiations on the contribution agreement commenced on May 5, 2020.

Question No. 65--
Mr. Alistair MacGregor:
With regard to Transport Canada’s (TC) announcement on November 1, 2017, to improve local maritime situational awareness and reduce marine traffic congestion through the Oceans Protection Plan, specifically with respect to the $500,000 national Anchorages Initiative (NAI) to “bring together government, the marine industry, Indigenous peoples and stakeholder communities to develop a sustainable national anchorage framework”: (a) in terms of subject matter, what areas of research has TC contracted, and who are the vendors; (b) who is currently directing the NAI and which of TC's federal and regional offices reports to the said director; (c) what concrete governmental actions, as a result of the NAI, can be expected by the initiative’s estimated completion date of fall 2020; (d) which First Nations peoples and affected West Coast communities (i) have been consulted, (ii) have arrangements for NAI consultations in place; and (e) at the present date, how much of the $500,000 budget allocated for the NAI remains unspent?
Response
Hon. Marc Garneau (Minister of Transport, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, with regard to part (a), the World Maritime University completed three comparative research studies for Transport Canada. These studies examined the impacts of anchoring and related mitigation measures, technologies and practices; the demand for anchoring outside the jurisdiction of major public ports in Canada; and international approaches to the management and oversight of anchorages outside the jurisdictions of major public ports.
With regard to part (b), the anchorages initiative is led by Transport Canada’s marine policy directorate in the national capital region.
With regard to part (c), Transport Canada will consult on a proposed approach to clarifying the governance and management of anchorages outside current port boundaries, with a view to mitigating socio-environmental impacts while promoting economic efficiency. As part of this work, best practices for the behaviour of large vessels at anchor will be advanced.
Given the impacts of COVID-19 on timelines and the need to ensure effective consultations with indigenous groups and other key stakeholders, the anchorages initiative will continue its work through to the end of the five-year mandate of the oceans protection plan.
With regard to part (d)(i), the following first nations peoples and affected west coast communities have been engaged: Snuneymuxw First Nation, Stz'uminus First Nation, Cowichan Tribes, Halalt First Nation, Lake Cowichan First Nation, Lyackson First Nation, Penelakut Tribe, Tseycum First Nation, Pauquachin First Nation, Tsartlip First Nation, Tsawout First Nation, Malahat First Nation, Tsawwassen First Nation, Cowichan Nation Alliance, Coast Salish Development Corporation, Islands Trust, Gabriolans Against Freighter Anchorages Society, Anchorages Concern Thetis, Cowichan Bay Ship Watch Society, Plumper Sound Protection Association, Protection Island Neighborhood Association, Stuart Channel Stewards, Saltair Ocean Protection Committee and Lady Smith Anchorage Watch.
In addition, the anchorages initiative participated in the following oceans protection plan engagement sessions attended by first nations, industry, government and community groups: Pacific Oceans Protection Plan Dialogue Forum Winter 2020, Vancouver, B.C., January 30, 2020; North Coast Oceans Protection Plan Dialogue Forum Fall 2018, Prince Rupert, B.C., November 22, 2018; Oceans Protection Plan Presentation to Comité de concertation sur la navigation, Bécancour, Quebec, October 30, 2018; South Coast Oceans Protection Plan Dialogue Forum Fall 2018, Vancouver, B.C., October 22, 2018; South Coast Oceans Protection Plan Indigenous Workshop Spring 2018, Nanaimo, B.C., May 8-9, 2018; Atlantic Region Oceans Protection Plan Day with Indigenous Groups and Industry, St. John’s, NFLD, March 28, 2018; South Coast Oceans Protection Plan Dialogue Forum Spring 2018, Vancouver, B.C., March 20-21, 2018; North Coast Oceans Protection Plan Dialogue Forum Spring 2018, Prince Rupert, B.C., March 8-9, 2018; Atlantic Oceans Protection Plan Day with Indigenous Groups, Moncton N.B., January 26, 2018; Oceans Protection Plan Presentation at the Atlantic Policy Congress of First Nations Chiefs Commercial Fisheries Conference, Moncton N.B., January 25, 2018; Atlantic Oceans Protection Plan Engagement Session, Dartmouth, N.S., June 19, 2018; Oceans Protection Plan Engagement Session, Quebec, Quebec, June 12, 2018 ; Oceans Protection Plan Engagement Session, Quebec, Quebec, November 7-8, 2017; Oceans Protection Plan Engagement Session, Vancouver, B.C., November 2, 2017.
With regard to part (d)(ii), additional engagement with indigenous groups and west coast communities will be undertaken once a proposed approach to the governance and management of anchorages is confirmed. No dates have been set at this point.
With regard to part (e), at the present date, the $500,000 budget allocated for the NAI has been spent.

Question No. 78--
Mr. Greg McLean:
With regard to the Clean Fuel Standard: (a) was a cost-benefit analysis of implementing such a regime conducted, and if not, why not; and (b) if such analysis was conducted, what are details including (i) who conducted the analysis, (ii) when was it conducted, (iii) what were the national results, (iv) what were the provincial or territorial results, (v) what is the website address of where analysis results were published, if applicable, (vi) if results were not published online, what is the rationale for not releasing the results?
Response
Hon. Jonathan Wilkinson (Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the proposed clean fuel standard regulations are on track to be published in Canada Gazette, part I in fall 2020, followed by a 75-day comment period. A regulatory impact analysis statement, which includes a cost-benefit analysis, will accompany the publication of the draft clean fuel standard regulations in Canada Gazette, part I. The cost-benefit analysis will provide an opportunity to engage with provinces, territories and stakeholders on, among other elements, the regional and sector economic impacts of the regulations.
Since the announcement of the clean fuel standard in 2016, there has been significant engagement on the design of the regulations. This has included engagement on the compliance pathways, including assumptions around technology update and costs.
In February 2019, Environment and Climate Change Canada released the Cost-Benefit Analysis Framework for the Clean Fuel Standard for comment. The framework can be found at www.canada.ca/en/environment-climate-change/services/managing-pollution/energy-production/fuel-regulations/clean-fuel-standard/cost-benefit-analysis-framework-february-2019.html.
Most recently, an update to the framework was provided in June 2020.

Question No. 85--
Mr. Dane Lloyd:
With regard to government employees working from home during the pandemic, broken down by department, agency, Crown corporation or other government entity: (a) what is the total number of employees whose primary work location was, prior to the pandemic (or as of January 1, 2020), (i) in a government building or office space, (ii) at a home office or private residence, (iii) other, such as outdoor or travelling; (b) what is the total number of employees who worked from a government building or office space as of (i) April 1, 2020, (ii) July 1, 2020, (iii) September 28, 2020; (c) what is the total number of employees who worked from a home office or private residence as of (i) April 1, 2020, (ii) July 1, 2020, (iii) September 28, 2020; (d) what is the number of employees who initially were advised or instructed to work from home during the pandemic; (e) how many of the employees in (d) have since returned to work in a government building or office space, and when did they return, broken down by how many employees returned on each date; (f) of the employees in (d), how many were able to (i) complete all or most of their regular employment duties from home, (ii) some of their regular employment duties from home, (iii) few or none of their regular employment duties from home; (g) how many employees were provided with or had access to government laptop computers or similar type devices so that they could continue performing their regular employment duties from home during the pandemic; and (h) how many employees, who were advised or instructed to work from home during the pandemic, were not provided or had access to a government laptop or similar type of device while working from home?
Response
Mr. Greg Fergus (Parliamentary Secretary to the President of the Treasury Board and to the Minister of Digital Government, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the Government of Canada is committed to supporting employees, whether physically in the workplace or at home. Together and apart, the government will continue to deliver information, advice, programs and services that Canadians need.
The Government of Canada continues to take exceptional measures to curb the COVID-19 pandemic and to protect the health and safety of its employees. The vast majority of public servants are working, either remotely or on site, to continue effectively delivering key programs and services to Canadians under these unprecedented circumstances.
Public health authorities have signalled that physical distancing requirements must remain in place. This means that many public service employees will continue to work remotely, and effectively, for the foreseeable future. Decisions regarding access to worksites are being made based on government-wide guidance and take into consideration the local public health situation and the nature of the work. Access to federal worksites for employees varies from organization to organization, based on operational requirements.
The physical and psychological health and safety of employees remain an absolute priority for the Government of Canada. As many parts of the country are seeing a resurgence in cases, the Government of Canada continues to be guided by the decisions of public health authorities, including Canada’s chief public health officer, and the direction of provinces/territories and cities. While the COVID-19 pandemic presents ongoing challenges for Canadians and for the public service, the government has been moving collectively and successfully towards managing COVID-19 as part of its ongoing operations and the continued delivery of key programs and services to Canadians.

Question No. 87--
Mr. Dane Lloyd:
With regard to the government's firearms prohibitions and buyback program: (a) did the government conduct, either internally or externally, any analysis on the impacts of alternative mechanisms to address firearms related crimes; and (b) if the answer to (a) is affirmative, what are the details of each such analysis, including (i) the alternate mechanism analyzed, (ii) who conducted the analysis, (iii) the date the analysis was provided to the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, (iv) findings, including any associated cost projections?
Response
Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, on May 1, 2020, the Government of Canada announced the immediate prohibition of over 1,500 models of assault-style firearms that are specifically designed for soldiers to shoot other soldiers. The prohibition limits access to the most dangerous firearms and removes them from the Canadian market.
For decades, police chiefs had been advocating for such a measure. In 1986, the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police, CACP, declared there was a “worldwide surplus” of accessible firearms that were designed for warfare and for the federal government to “take the steps necessary to end this increase in available weapons.” In 1994, the CACP declared that “military assault rifles” were produced for the “sole purpose of killing people in large numbers” and urged the Minister of Justice to enact legislation to “ban all military assault rifles except for law enforcement and military purposes.” Last September, the Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police declared their support for a prohibition on all military-designed assault rifles. In their view, “these weapons have no place in our communities and should be reserved for use by Canada’s military and law enforcement.” Additionally, the current chief of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police has declared that this prohibition “finds balance” as it “ensures the safety of our members” while not limiting “those that recreationally participate in hunting or those that actually live off the land.”
Between October 2018 and February 2019, the government held extensive public engagement on the issue of banning handguns and assault-style firearms with the provinces and territories, municipalities, indigenous groups, law enforcement, community organizations and industry to help inform policy, regulations and legislation to reduce violent crime involving firearms. While the engagement was framed by the examination of a potential ban, the discussion explored several potential measures to reduce violent crime including enhanced enforcement capacity for law enforcement and border services, investments to support initiatives that reduce violence, and strengthening safe firearms storage requirements to help prevent theft. Many participants expressed that a ban on assault-style firearms was needed in order to protect public safety.
We put in place an amnesty to give existing owners time to come into compliance with the law. The amnesty order also provides a temporary exception for indigenous persons exercising section 35 constitutional rights to hunt and for sustenance hunters to allow for continued use of newly prohibited firearms, if previously non-restricted, until a suitable replacement can be found. The government remains committed to introducing a buyback program during the amnesty period. However, the costs associated with implementing a buyback program have not yet been finalized.
While the prohibition was a crucial initiative, it was only the first step in the government’s gun control agenda. The government also intends to bring forward targeted measures to further address the criminal use of firearms. We will strengthen firearms storage requirements to deter theft. Following hundreds of millions of dollars cut by the previous Conservative government, we will continue to make the necessary investments to enhance our tracing capacity and reduce the number of guns being smuggled across the border. We will continue to also work with our partners from other levels of government to develop an approach to address handguns.
The government also intends to build on previous investments in youth and community measures, because we know that better social conditions lead to a reduction in crime and violence.
These initiatives were identified as a priority by our government, both in the throne speech and in the Prime Minister’s mandate letter to the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness and we are committed to addressing these important issues as soon as possible.

Question No. 88--
Mr. Dane Lloyd:
With regard to the firearms regulations and prohibitions published in the Canada Gazette on May 1, 2020, and the proposed gun buyback program: (a) what is the total projected cost of the buyback program, broken down by type of expense; (b) is the projected cost a guess, or did the government use a formula or formal analysis to arrive at the projected cost; and (c) what are the details of any formula or analysis used by the government in coming up with the projected cost?
Response
Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the government remains committed to introducing a buyback program that offers fair compensation to affected owners and businesses, while making sure implementation and management costs of such a program are well priced and sustainable. To assist in meeting this dual objective, Public Safety is seeking to obtain professional services through a competitive process for the provision of advice on options and approaches to further inform ongoing efforts to develop a buyback program. Specifically, this advice would focus on firearms pricing models, as well as on the design, implementation and management of a buyback program for recently prohibited firearms.
As such, the costs associated with implementing and managing a buyback program have not been finalized yet and will be further refined in the coming months as program design development work progresses. Public Safety, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, RCMP, and its partners are looking at a range of options, and will work with the provinces and territories to get this right for law-abiding gun owners and businesses.
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