[Opening prayer by Mr. Speaker. ]
MR. SPEAKER: Presenting petitions
Reading and receiving petitions
Presenting reports by standing and select committees
Notices of motion
Introduction of Bills
Orders of the Day
HONOURABLE DUFF ROBLIN (Premier): Mr. Speaker, before the Orders of the Day are called, I think it would be fitting if I were to make mention of a very significant event indeed, of which we have just received news. And that is the election of a Supreme Pontiff in the person of Cardinal Roncelli the Patriarch of Venice, whom we are told has just been chosen Pope and is taking the name of John the twenty-third.
This is an event which is of great significance, particularly to our Roman Catholic fellow citizens in this province and is a matter which is followed with the deepest of interest and concern by all men of peace and goodwill throughout the world.
I feel that it is fitting that speaking in this Chamber as I do now, and perhaps if, and I make this assumption for the people of the Province as well - to express to His Holiness, the new Pope, our congratulations on his election, and our prayers and good wishes for a peaceful and Holy Pontificate.
MR. D. L. CAMPBELL (Leader of the Opposition): Mr. Speaker, I am sure that all of us can join most heartily in the expressions that the Honourable the Leader of the House has just made.
I think that all of us would join too, in the statement that a wonderful contribution was made, not only to the huge congregation that he served throughout the world, but to people of other congregations as well, by the late Pope Pius the Twelfth, and I think perhaps we could wish the new Pontiff no greater success than that he should follow the example of that great and good man.
This is a time in the world's history, Mr. Speaker, when so many parts of the world are tense and troubled, that the influence of one person in such a high office can contribute much to the steadiness and the solidarity, and the ultimate benefit of the world as a whole. And I am sure that the record of the recent
Pontiff has been one that has given us great encouragement to look forward for a tremendous contribution from His Holiness who has just been elected by the Cardinals in Conclave. I'm sure that all of us realize the tremendous responsibility he undertakes as well as the great honour that has been bestowed upon him, and we would join, all of us, regardless of our faith, in wishing this new Holy Father the very greatest of success in the very great position to which he has been elected.
MR. E. PREFONTAINE (Carillon): M. l'Orateur, je crois qu'il m'appartient comme le doyen des députés catholiques de cette Chambre de remercier chaleureusement le Premier Ministre de la gentillesse qu'il vient de temoigner à notre égard et de l'acte d'homme d'état qu'il a pose en rappellant à l'attention de cette Chambre le fait que l'Église catholique du monde entier vient de se chosir un nouveau chef dans la personne du Pape Jean XXIII. Je n'étais pas au courant de cette grande nouvelle jusqu'il y a une ou deux minutes alors que M. Campbell, le chef de o'Opposition m'a averti que M. Roblin ferait la presentation de cette nouvelle. Je tiens à le remercier. Comme de raison tout le monde catholique depuis quelques jours vit dans l'espoir que bientôt la grande nouvelle serait repandu à travers le monde que l'Église catholique avait un nouveau Pape. L'Église catholique comme vous de savez c'est l'Église universelle. La province du Manitoba se devait il me semble de poser le geste déposé aujourd'hui par le Premier Ministre et je tiens Monsieur l'Orateur à assurer le nouveau chef, le nouveau Pape Jean XXIII la plus entière soumission de ces sujets catholiques de cette Province et lui assurer les voeux qu'ils font - des voeux sincères pour un règne fructueux et long.
MR. L. STINSON (Leader of the C.C.F.): I am sure that the members of my party would want me to associate our group with these expressions of goodwill towards the new Pope, His Holiness John XXIII.
His responsibility in the world is a very great one as leader of such an important church body. We certainly wish him well in his work. I should like also to take this opportunity of paying a tribute to the long service and great work of the late Pope Pius the Twelfth. He was a great church leader and we wish to give our expression of good will to all people of this faith.
MR. M. A. GRAY (Inkster): Mr. Speaker, may I say a word as a member of the Jewish Race.
The Pope is not only head of many million Roman Catholics, he is also a world's man; a man who is striving for a goal of peace, freedom and a better world to live in. In a peaceful and democratic world we have a better chance to maintain our traditions in our own life. So I am very happy to join the others in expressing good wishes to the new elected Pope.
MR. JOHN CARROLL (Minister of Public Utilities): Mr. Speaker, before the Orders of the Day I have a couple of announcements to make.
Within recent weeks the Government has been giving consideration to the probable future power requirements of Northern Manitoba, as well as to the extent of which these requirements should be anticipated and provided for.
There are at present very important mineral developments taking place in the Snow Lake region. These and other important mineralized regions of Northern Manitoba are within economic reach of the Kelsey generating station for the transmission of reasonably large blocks of power. In addition to these resources there are large bands of pulpwood within the general vicinity, and we believe that the availability of power could prove helpful in stimulating the early establishment of a pulp and paper industry in this area.
Also important I believe, is the fact that extension of the Kelsey station would add to the reliability and continuous production and employment at Thompson.
In view of these important considerations, the Government has asked the Manitoba Hydro Electric Board to make plans to proceed with the addition of No. 5 generating unit and the rock excavation for No. 6 at Kelsey. This addition will add 42,000 horsepower to the installation at Kelsey; this will bring the total generating capacity at Kelsey to 210,000 horsepower, giving it slightly larger capacity than the Seven Sisters Station of the Board, which is presently the largest station in Manitoba.
The cost of this expansion is estimated at approximately five million dollars. I might add, Mr. Speaker, that in reaching this decision the Government was influenced by the fact that making these arrangements now we can be assured of this additional power being available by 1961. If this decision had been delayed until the completion of the number four unit we might have encountered circumstances under which delays of two to three years could be involved, depending on the delivery of equipment and other considerations. You will note from this that it is in accordance with one of the main recommendations of the Arthur D. L. Little Report. I am very pleased with the enthusiasm with which my colleagues have accepted and expressed their faith in the future of the northern part of this Province.
MR. SPEAKER: Orders of Return. The Honourable Member for Springfield.
MR. W. LUCKO (Springfield): Mr. Speaker, I would like to move, seconded by the honourable member for Dufferin, that an Order of the House do issue. Return showing: (1) Is it the intention of the Government to construct five miles of Highway West of the Town of Beausejour connecting Provincial Trunk Highway No. 22 and Provincial Trunk Highway No. 4? (2) If it is the intention to build the said road, to what standard is it to be built and is it the intention to incorporate the road in the Provincial Trunk Highway System? (3) If it is the intention to build the said road, when is construction to commence? (4) If it is the intention to build the said road, by whom will the cost of construction be borne, and by what percentages?
[Mr. Speaker presented the motion and asked if they were ready for the question. ]
MR. LUCKO: Mr. Speaker, the only reason for that is to make some clarification to the people of my constituency. I had great pleasure on the 24th of October with the Honourable the First Minister, to attend the Water Works opening of Beausejour, and his colleague, the Honourable Minister of Public Works had accompanied him. I have made great effort to listen to the great statement that the first honourable member has spoken to the audience there, and his words were these: He was trying to play a fine little fellow himself - "that we are - that you need the road and we are going to construct you five miles - in fact he said six, but it is only five on the...and that's what it is. He said six miles of road to connect you with the No. 22 Highway".
Now if that is the case why, not too long ago a delegation from Beausejour attended with the Honourable Minister of Public Works. The Minister of Public Works has promised that to them, they they will construct that road and will construct this year. Now it that is the case, the people are approaching me till this day and saying "What is happening". Well I says I am sorry to tell you that because I'm afraid the Minister is so busy election campaigning now that he hasn't got the time to look at it - which was got to be built in the first place.
Furthermore, this is a very important connection. It wasn't too long that a program, all of you have on the files, honourable members that sat in that House - the 1957-1958 program, when that project there was the No. 22 was constructed. Now from that time we find that the roads No. 4, No. 59, No. 22 are all waiting for the No. 4, where the people got to go East. The people of Beausejour don't like a statement of that type. The statement must be made clear to them what standard of that road - how is it going to be built, and not any propaganda being spread, which is to my opinion purely political propaganda. Let the honourable Minister, I challenge him - get up and tell the people in the Eastern area what's done and when, and the people will be quite satisfied.
[Mr. Speaker put the question and after a voice vote declared the motion carried. ]
MR. SPEAKER: Second Reading, Bill No. 7. The Honourable Minister of Labour.
HON. JOHN THOMPSON (Minister of Labour): Mr. Speaker, I move, seconded by the Honourable the Attorney-General, that Bill No. 7, An Act for the Relief of Dennis Beaudry be now read a second time.
[Mr. Speaker presented the motion, put the question and after a voice vote declared the motion carried. ]
MR. SPEAKER: Bill No. 13. The Honourable the Minister of Agriculture.
HON. ERRICK WILLIS (Minister of Agriculture): Mr. Speaker, I beg to move, seconded by the Minister of Education, that Bill No. 13, An Act to amend the Veterinary Science Scholarship Fund Act, be now read a second time.
[Mr. Speaker presented the motion, put the question and after a voice vote declared the motion carried. ]
MR. SPEAKER: Adjourned debate, Bill No. 2. The Honourable Member for Rhineland.
MR. W. C. MILLER (Rhineland): Mr. Speaker, my first words must be words of congratulations to the new Minister. He made a very able presentation when he moved second reading of this Bill. He stuck to his text, which was the text of the Bill and the text of the Bill in turn was the text of the Commission Report. I sincerely congratulate him, I hope that he will continue to make similar contributions in this House.
If I may, I would just like to give him a little bit of advice. And I am sure that he will accept that advice, which is given sincerely and in order to be helpful. He is a new Minister and although he had considerable experience as a school trustee and as a municipal official, his experience in this House is somewhat limited; and his experience as a Minister somewhat limited. And I would like to suggest to him, that it is in his own interests that he make available to the House, all the information that he has in the past, made available to other sources. I think it is the duty of any Minister of the Crown, when he makes a report, or intends to submit Legislation, to consider the wishes of the House first, and then provide suitable publicity.
Now, Mr. Speaker, it was suggested by my honourable friend the Leader of the C.C.F. Party the other day that I might be very pleased with this Bill. May I say sincerely that with the principles contained in this Bill I am in accord. Those of the honourable members who had the privilege of sitting in the House for some considerable time, will remember that for many years I have stressed the greater benefits of the larger area of school administration existed at the secondary level, and for that statement, Mr. Speaker, I have been severely chastised. Not only by my honourable friend the Leader of the C.C.F. Party, but also by the Honourable the First Minister. As a matter of fact, I was accused of lack of leadership in promoting larger areas of the Dauphin-Ochre type, and concentrating my efforts on promoting areas at the secondary level. I think many more considerable efforts than my honourable friend, greater efforts than were made by any member of this House! ...Well, I'll come to that...Well the competition wasn't too keen Mr. Speaker. And now what do we find? We are firmly committed to the desirability of establishing divisions or areas at the secondary level. We are firmly committed in accordance with the statements by the Minister, to the promotion of these divisions or areas, and I think that that is a good thing. I am happy indeed that the Royal Commission in its Interim Report stated...recommended this type of organization to the Government. I am happy too, that the Government
threw over its own policy, or lack of policy, and adopted the Commission report.
And so Mr. Speaker, my Honourable friend the Leader of the C.C.F. Party is indeed right when he says that this Bill in principle, should meet with our approval.... Well, I wish you were right in other matters as well, but generally in other matters you're absolutely wrong. It has been proven so so many times.
Now I've stated that in principle, that we agree with this Bill. I would like an explanation however, how the Government came to adopt a policy that was first initiated in this Chamber at the instance of the Liberal-Progressive Party. What was the Government policy? What was the Government policy on education? I suggest, Mr. Speaker, they had none - and the interim report was a very timely one for the Government. We had an election just a few months ago, and in the pre-election campaign my honourable friend the First Minister went up and down this Province promising greater educational support, and what did he say - "Put me in power and I will increase educational grants by fifty percent." This promise was made unconditionally, no strings attached and had some effect in the campaign. He was returned as the Leader of the largest group in the South. He is entrusted with the reigns of Government. How does he propose to redeem those election pledges? Can he sincerely suggest that this Bill will redeem those unconditional pledges of an increase of fifty percent? Mr. Speaker, not by any stretch of the imagination can the adoption of this Bill redeem his campaign pledges.
I would like to discuss now some of the aspects of the Bill. I have said that we intend to support this Bill in principle. We will have some observations to make in Committee and I will draw certain things that in my opinion could be improved, to the attention of the House. The Legislation requires that a Boundary Commission be set up and with that idea I am in full accord. I think it is highly important that the people on that Commission should be men and women of wide knowledge, of sympathetic understanding; men and women well able to cope with the many problems that they will face in even arriving at the boundaries that they will select. I am quite sure that the Minister intends very shortly, now that he is practically assured of the passage of his Bill, to announce the personnel of that Commission. It's a very important Commission, because not only have they the right to define boundaries of proposed divisions, which will require a vote, but they also have power to recommend to the Minister that certain school districts may be set up as a division without a vote, and that would mean, I don't know how many, but certainly it would include the City of Winnipeg, which would be - could be set up as a division; perhaps St. James; St. Boniface maybe, and others who have their requisite size and assessment.
I would like to suggest to the Commission, through the Minister, that they hold meetings, several meetings in each division, in order to hear representations and hear any suggestions as to proposed boundaries. The Minister has indicated that that will be done. I think, too, that the idea of following this up with an education campaign is very important, and I was quite
pleased with the announcement that the Minister and his colleagues would educate the people and try to sell this secondary division idea. As a matter of fact, in spite of the statement made by some...or at least...I am quite prepared to support that - I am quite prepared to support that and I only wish that when I invited honourable members opposite that they would have given me a favourable answer.... And may I say, Mr. Speaker, that honourable members opposite were very conspicuous by their absence when any meeting promoting the secondary area was held.
MR. ROBLIN: Your plan's no good.
MR. MILLER: My honourable friend says my plan is no good, and yet his plan is an extension of mine.... And it can't be construed otherwise.... And it can't be construed otherwise.
MR. ROBLIN: Ask the Royal Commission.
MR. MILLER: I mean I can read even if my honourable friend can't.
MR. ROBLIN: ...you read the first chapter.
MR. MILLER: ...I think that if, at these meetings the educational values of this organizational set-up should be emphasized, as well as the monetary advantage. I might say, Mr. Speaker, to my honourable friend that we were able by education and many meetings to establish four secondary areas, and that without the tariff. And I think that with the inducement now offered that there should be no difficulty in getting a great majority of the people to agree to this type of organizational set-up. As I have said before, the general aspects of the Bill follow very, very closely - in a great many cases, the same language has been used - and I think that the only thing that is counter to the recommendations of the Commission in connection with the financial set-up is the method by which the municipal levies, general levies, will be distributed. The Minister may correct me if I'm wrong. I think the Commission envisaged that the general levy would be sent by the municipalities - collected and sent by the municipalities to the Provincial Treasurer, and that the distribution would be made from here.
I might say that I have no fault at all to find with the provisions in the Bill whereby the Division Board acts as the distributing agency. I think that's a good thing, because this is merely a substitution of the Division Board by the municipalities or instead of the municipalities, the Division Board acts as the distributing agency.
There are certain grants that will be paid out. We are rather in the dark as to just what they mean, and I certainly would expect the Minister to give us the fullest information on the formula at least in Committee. I think he should give us the fullest information on the type of regulations that he proposes to establish in order to effectively administer these grants. I think, as a matter of fact, and in this case I am in
agreement with my honourable friend, the First Minister, that wherever possible, and wherever practical, the terms of the formula, if it is a simple one, should be embodied in the legislation itself. And I'm not quite sure what the Minister had in mind when he said that he had to propose some amendments in Committee - it may be just that. I hope that he gives very, very serious consideration to this suggestion. Certainly these factors will be brought out in Committee.
I am particularly interested in the scale of teachers' salaries at the maximum under which these grants will be paid. I think it is very important that we should have full information as to the graduated scale, if any, under which these regulations will be established. I am anxious to find out whether or not he proposes to accept the recommendation of the Royal Commission on page...I can't find it just now - at any rate he knows what I mean I'm quite sure - that is the elementary scale and the secondary scale - 73? I think that's very important because if, I don't know what the effect of this scale would be but it provides - I don't know whether the Government intends to adopt the merit system, the merit rating system of teachers. No doubt the Minister will inform us fully on that at the proper time.
Outside of making grants available to divisions and school districts who vote themselves in the division, there is only one definite proposal that affects all schools, and that is the provision of free text books. The other provisions are conditional, and the Minister's estimate of money required to finance these operations are absolutely conditional upon the people voting themselves into a division.
There is no provision in the Bill, nor does the Government intend, according to the statement made by the Minister, to bring down further legislation having to do with school grants. I think the grants proposed in the Bill, once we get full information, might be found to be satisfactory. But I wonder if no further action in connection with school districts is proposed at this Session. I wonder whether the First Minister's conscience will not bother him a bit when he recalls his unconditional promise to increase grants to school districts by fifty percent. I think he should take into consideration the fact that where districts, for some reason or another, do not accept the recommendations of the Commission, and do not succumb to the persuasive powers of my honourable friend, that they too should be given some consideration in order that the honourable, the First Minister may sleep well, and not be bothered by bad dreams, because certainly the offer - the promise, was unconditional. And I think that the people of Manitoba would expect him to make good his promises. I am awaiting with a great deal of interest a statement from the ministry on that part. I think the House is entitled to it. I hope to get it.
Mr. Speaker, as I have said at the outset, it is not my purpose to go over the various sections of the Bill. I think these matters can best be attended to in Committee. I want to re-emphasize that we will be asking for full and complete information as to the regulations, as to the scale for teachers' salaries proposed as a maximum, as to the enrollment formula,
and certainly we are going to suggest that wherever possible, these be incorporated in the statute rather than in regulations.
Mr. Speaker, as I have indicated in the beginning, we are proposed, with reservations that I have made, to support this Bill, we think it is a good one, I'm very glad ineed that it also has been endorsed by the Winnipeg newspapers. I was rather amazed to see my friends of the Tribune so heartily endorse this secondary division idea. However, they are all in accord with the ideas of the Commission. I hope that this legislation as the Minister has indicated, I sincerely hope that this legislation will do much to improve education standards in Manitoba.
MR. ORLIKOW (St. John's): Mr. Speaker, I beg to move, seconded by the honourable member for Burrows, that the Debate be adjourned.
MR. ROBLIN: I have no objection to the Debate being adjourned, but I would like to enquire whether there is any other member of the House cares to speak on this subject at the present time. The Bill has been before us now for some few days. The Minister made his statement the other day and it occurred to me there might be members who were ready and willing to speak at the moment rather than adjourn. I hope that we will have a relatively free debate on this, and rather than have an adjournment after every speech, that we proceed with the discussion as best we can in the manner that I have indicated, so while I am not proposing to object to this adjournment, I would like to place before the House, Mr. Speaker, the proposition that the Debate should be allowed to continue freely because after all the facts are now before us.
MR. STINSON: ...case in this House, and we do not adjourn debates if someone else wishes to speak.
MR. CAMPBELL: Mr. Speaker, the honourable First Minister is correct in this and also the honourable the Leader of the C.C.F. is correct that first - that we should try to make all convenient speed in matters of this kind. And on the other hand, it is an extremely important Bill, and in case that it is the feeling, for any reason, that the honourable member who rose to adjourn the Debate, because after all there is a good many new members in the House, and they may not be aware of the procedure that my honourable friend the leader of the C.C.F. Party has mentioned - and couldn't we agree that if someone else is willing to speak, that the honourable member who had first risen to adjourn the Debate, might have the adjournment when the time comes, so there is no question of any unseemly rush to get the adjournment? That being the case, I would think that we should have the understanding that if anyone is prepared to speak that all he needs to do is stand up in his place and say he is prepared to carry on. I'd agree.
MR. SPEAKER: Do any members wish to speak on the Bill at the present time?
MR. SPEAKER: Moved by the honourable member for St. John's seconded by the honourable member for Kildonan that the debate be adjourned.
[Mr. Speaker put the question and after a voice vote declared the motion carried. ]
MR. SPEAKER: Adjourned Debate on Bill No. 3. The honourable the member for Flin Flon.
MR. F. L. JOBIN (Flin Flon): Mr. Speaker, at the outset of my remarks I first of all want to thank the honourable, the Minister of Mines and Resources, and the Acting Minister of Industry and Commerce for his fine compliments yesterday, both to myself and my predecessor, in admitting that the department over the years has been doing a reasonably good job, while maybe lacking some of the tools, yet he did agree that it was announced that things had been reasonably well administered and carried out. As a matter of fact, Mr. Speaker, he was so sincere and so enthusiastic about that particular statement that I think it was at that time that he referred to me as the Minister, so I thank him doubly for the compliment.
I regret though to notice that the First Minister saw fit to couple the responsibilities and the duties of the Minister of Mines and Resources with that of Industry and Commerce. I know the honourable Minister is a very capable and able man. I also know from experience that the work entailed in Industry and Commerce is of such volume that it requires a full time Minister, regardless of how capable he happens to be. At this time, dealing with this Industrial Bill, and while it's unrelated, I do beg leave of the House to compliment the Government and the Minister of Public Utilities on their statements that they read this afternoon concerning the extension of the Kelsey Power Site. The members of this House know that has been a long - the matter of Northern power has been a pet subject of mine for at least the nine years that I have been in the House, and so I do compliment the Government and the Minister on behalf of the people of Northern Manitoba.
I welcome the introduction of this particular bill because I think it is something that will benefit industry in Manitoba as the Minister mentioned yesterday. But I think, just for the record, that we should perhaps remember that this is not something new; it is not something exactly that can be credited to the present Government solely. And the Minister didn't attempt to do that yesterday, but I think for the records, we should bear in mind that this has been under consideration for not so very many years. And I would, if I may, refer to some remarks that I made last year in the House, that at that time I stated that the Department of Industry and Commerce had been aware of the need for capital and the establishment of a Loan Fund -- I pointed out that in 1956 when the Government was preparing the Brief to the Royal Commission on Canada's economic prospects, that a study of the present sources of investment was made.
I also mentioned last year that in 1956 the Business Advisory
Council had been instructed, and did carry out a study of loan funds and the possibility of establishment of community development corporations, and again I would remind the House that it was in 1956 that some thought was given to asking the Arthur D. Little Corporation to look into this matter of industrial loans, and I think it was in 1957 that they were actually commissioned to do just that. Last year the report was turned in and it is partly on the recommendations of that report that this Bill is being implemented.
I think, too, that in considering this Bill, the merits and demerits of it, that it wouldn't be amiss if we went over some of the things that I mentioned last year. At that time I had pointed out that we had sent copies of this Arthur D. Little report to members of the Business Advisory Council, to members of business here in Manitoba, and asked their opinion. And I think in discussing this today or this year we should give at least some of the thoughts that were expressed by some of the people that we referred this Bill to.
Last year we grouped them in to four classes. I reported that manufacturers generally agreed with the idea of a loan fund. I pointed out that the investment and financial people of the province were of mixed opinion and that opinion was divided. Some investment firms recognized the need for such a fund, others claimed that the Industrial Development Bank was fulfilling this particular field and that they should be left to it. Some of them pointed out that the high risk in financing small business undertakings was endangered; some pointed out the effect of the Province's credit standing if such a Bill were implemented, and others pointed out the resentment that might be created when one particular firm might be assisted and the other one was not assisted.
I reported too, the opinion of a very well known, though I didn't mention him by name, nor do I do it now - but the opinion of a well known Canadian economist. His main observation was on the type of management responsible for the project. He suggested that the chief executive officer should be drawn from private industry rather than from government sources. And I am pleased, Mr. Speaker, to note that this Bill differs from the A.D.L. report in that respect. The A.D.L. report talks about the Deputy Minister and Provincial Treasurer, and several persons from government should be on the Loan Board. This Bill takes the opposite stand and attempts to, and I think does, create a reasonably independent board.
The fourth group that we consulted was the general group. They were generally in agreement with it. However, there were some persons that thought the need for a loan fund should be investigated still further, and I would like to, if I may, read just a paragraph from what I said last year, having said these things - I said: "This is where the situation stands today. While many see the need for providing additional capital for business and industry in our complex economy, and have found favour with the A.D.L. proposal, others accept the necessity of such an undertaking, but feel the proposal before us should be modified to a greater or lesser extent. A further group has indicated qualified or unqualified opposition to the scheme".
Now, Mr. Speaker, I would like to point out too, that the leader of the Opposition, the former leader of the Government, certainly showed sympathy, more than sympathy rather, for the establishment of either a fund.... To show this I would like to quote from his submission to the Dominion-Provincial Conference. I believe it was in 1956, and this is what the Leader of the Opposition, at that time, said - "A national resource development policy is not only desirable, but essential. It is equally desirable and essential if we are to have a truly sound and well-balanced national economy. But the Federal Government adopt policies designed to promote the development of secondary industry in presently less highly industrial provinces of Canada. At the same time, the scope of activities of the Industrial Development Bank should be broadened to enable the Bank to assist service industries, such as retail stores, motels and other tourist facilities. So important do we believe these matters to be, Mr. Prime Minister, that we urge that special consideration be given to ways in which the national government can aid materially in encouraging the development of industries throughout all parts of the Province".
I read that paragraph and my former remarks to this House to indicate that this is not something entirely new on behalf of the present government, but something that was considered, it certainly was not definitely carried out nor was it definitely rejected by the former government.
Now last year again, and I think we are all concerned with this, I mentioned the fact of duplication. It is regrettable that we should have to establish in Manitoba an industrial loan fund that is a duplication in a large degree, to the Industrial Development Bank. But I would suggest, Mr. Speaker, that in view of what has happened over the past year, last 2 or 3 years, the Province of Manitoba has no other alternative. Again, referring to what I said last year - I said: "We would prefer to wait until after the federal election before doing anything specific on this." I mentioned at that time that both political parties were showing some concern for small industries, and that both had made promises of doing something about it. So I say, Mr. Speaker, in view of the fact that nothing has been done by the Federal Government since that election, then it behooves this provincial government to do something about it.
If I might again put something else on the record, Mr. Speaker. Reference has been made on news releases, and I do this because the Opposition or the Government at this time, like to take credit for the things they are doing - and I give them full credit for it - but I would like to put something else on record. That is the matter of the Winkler Co-Operative Canners. The Minister was most fair yesterday. He did acknowledge that the previous government had something to do about it. Unfortunately there are only 57 members in this particular House, and too many people don't realize and don't recognize the admission that he made yesterday. But what I am referring to is the type of publicitiy that goes out. I suppose all is fair in love and war - but I am referring to the type of publicity that was a news release from the Department of Industry and Commerce on August 29th...and it said "The Manitoba Government has stepped in to
assist in the long term financing of an aggressive co-operative cannery at Winkler by guaranteeing a $50,000 loan". Continues, "Mr. Gurney Evans, Minister of Industry and Commerce said Friday that Cabinet by Order-in-Council has authorized the guarantee to Co-Op Prairie Canners Ltd."
And then another quote of Mr. Evans: "This example of private and government co-operation in helping to place an industry on a firm financial footing, is the type of thing the government has in mind in setting up a provincial Industrial Loan Fund".
Again, I admit that all is fair in love and war, and I'm not making too much of a complaint about it, but I do want to put it on record as the Minister himself said yesterday. But as the report of the Press or the Press release didn't in August, I want to put it on record that it was the former government that started the ball rolling in regard to the Winkler Co-Op Canners.
Now, referring directly to the Bill, I had indicated that our Party will support it. I congratulate the Minister on bringing it in, and I personally congratulate him because it contains a section in there that I introduced or suggested in a Throne Speech Debate in 1956. At that particular time I advocated the establishment of a half a million dollar revolving fund from which the operators of tourist camps could loan money to improve their facilities. So generally speaking, we are extremely pleased with the Bill. But there are certain things in the Bill that we object to - certain things that in the Committee stage I intend to introduce amendments on. And I can assure the Minister and the Government that any objections that I make here today, specifically to the Bill, are not meant to obstruct, but rather to improve the Bill.
Now referring to the Bill as the Minister did yesterday, to the purpose of the Bill. The Minister took the Bill and he said the purpose of the Bill was to provide financial assistance to the operators of new and existing manufacturing industries, tourist accommodations, community development corporations; to encourage people to invest funds in industry in Manitoba; provide technical and business advice to promote the diversification of business activities in the Province.
For some unknown reason, the Minister missed reading one clause that I certainly object to and that is to provide financial assistance to the operators of such other businesses as the Board may designate from time to time. Mr. Speaker, I contend that we, the legislators, who are going to authorize this and to approve money, we should be entitled to know the types of business that are going to benefit by this loan plan. I think it is only fair and proper that we should, but to include something like that in the Bill as the Board sees fit they can designate the types of business, I think that is not fair to we, the legislators. And if the Government still thinks this is fine and dandy, I might warn them that they might find themselves in the bad predicament that was referred to by the member from, I forget the constituency, but the Board, with this type of power might even get themselves into the horseracing industry, and so I suggest for their own protection that they had better do something about that particular aspect of giving so much power to the Board itself.
Now the Minister, in the Throne Speech, and then again yesterday, referred to - I shudder to think of it - but he talked about loans without security or whether security could be waived. Again, I suggest to the Minister, not to be overly critical, but to be constructive. Surely the people of Manitoba and we the legislators are not going to set aside five million dollars and be responsible for any other debentures that the corporation may issue; surely we are not going to say that this Board can loan money without some type of security. So I suggest that this matter should be looked into as well.
Another principle that seems odd and irregular in the Bill is that whereby the Board can increase or decrease the rate of interest. I suggest, Mr. Speaker, that this is just a shade too much power to leave in the hands of the Board, and if the House doesn't want to set the rate of interest as firm and fixed and it can only be changed by the Legislature, then at least I suggest that the increasing or decreasing of the rate of interest should be a matter for Order-in-Council rather than to empower the Board to do just that.
The Bill also as I read it, permits the Board to acquire and dispose of property on their own initiative. I would suggest the other Bills - I think of the Liquor Control Commission, at least if it doesn't, I think it says, I am positive that they cannot acquire or dispose of property of the Liquor Commission unless it has the approval of the Lieutenant-Governor-in-Council and our own Act spells out the amount of money they can spend on buildings and that type of thing. And so I suggest this as another rather irregular situation and should be attended to.
Now there is a report in the Free Press, and just the shake of a head will indicate to me, that I ask the Minister, surely this cannot be right that this report of Free Press October 25th, it says: "Mr. Evans, together with two of the directors and one other officer of the corporation will form the executive committee". I don't think -- well I am glad to hear that that isn't true, because the reading of the Bill indicates that the executive committee are the ones that are going to process the loans, and it would be a very dangerous feature if the Minister were to be on the executive. I am glad to hear him say that he is not on the executive.... Very good.
And so having made these three or four objections on just three or four points, having also mentioned the fact that some credit for the establishment of getting this thing on the wheels, on the rails, goes to the former administration, I do want to close by saying that we consider it a good Bill - if the government will consider making or accepting certain ammendments. We regret however, that the Industrial Development Bank or that Ottawa has not seen fit to broaden the terms of the I.D.B. Bank, but then we can't be too critical of that because when we were in your position and another government was in Ottawa, we tried and weren't too successful either. So, having seen no success in broadening of terms of I.D.B. there was no other alternative for the present Minister but to introduce this particular type of Bill. Personally, I am sure that it will be of great benefit for the advancement of industry in Manitoba, and we are prepared then to endorse this legislation.
MR. SPEAKER: Are you ready for the question?
MR. C. L. SHUTTLEWORTH (Minnedosa): I move, seconded by the honourable member for Carillon, that the debate be adjourned.
[Mr. Speaker put the motion and after a voice vote declared the motion carried. ]
MR. G. MOLGAT (Ste. Rose): Mr. Speaker, the matter of Farm Credit is one that we have discussed on several previous occasions in this House, and I think it's fair to say that in the past, we have found a fair measure of agreement on this question of farm credit. Last year I proposed a resolution in this regard. The Honourable the First Minister spoke on it, and by and large, we agreed, first on the matter of need, that the cost-price squeeze, the need for diversification as a result of that cost-price squeeze; the desire of the farmers; the necessity, should I say, in fact, of establishing economic units, so far as size is concerned; the fact that many young farmers found it extremely difficult to get on to an economic basis of farming today; the fact that under the present available capital supply for farmers, many were excluded, such as ranchers and others who rent land. We agreed to that. We agreed to that, since that's what it needs. I think we agreed reasonably well, also, that the sources of capital were not satisfactory. The mortgage companies were no longer interested in providing long-term capital for farm use. The commercial banks are only interested in the short-term capital and, furthermore, many farmers found it extremely difficult to get even that from the banks.
The Canadian Farm Loan Board was not satisfactory for many purposes, particularly here in the Province of Manitoba. We found that 15,000 limit was too little. We found that the basis on which the loan was made, that is, strictly on the productive value of land, was insufficient. So, on those points, I think we have full agreement. We did not, however, have agreement on the methods by which more capital should be available to farmers in Manitoba.
I might say that in spite of the Bill that's presented here, I can say at this stage that I propose to support the Bill, with many amendments, but propose to support it. But I still say that what we were saying last year is the right stand insofar as the supplying of long-term capital to farmers in this Province, and I'd like to list again, for the interest of the First Minister who debated this with me last year, that I still have an imposing list of people in the farm field who agree with me. The two provincial farm bodies; the National Farm Group; the Saskatchewan Royal Commission on Agriculture and Rural Life; the annual conference of provinicial Ministers of Agriculture, and since the Bill has been presented to the House, once again, the leaders of the two farm groups in Manitoba have stated their case, agreeing with what we were saying here last year.
However, our honourable friend didn't agree. He made this one of his election promises. I must say he won the election and
now he is proposing to implement that promise. I commend him highly for that action and I assure him that it is my intention to see to it that all of his election promises are lived up to, if I can do so, on the condition that those promises will provide good measures for the Province of Manitoba. I propose to assist him in this Bill to the point of making, I hope, a very good Bill out of it by the time we are through with it.
I still think that there wasn't enough pressure put on his honourable friends in Ottawa to make the changes in the Canadian Farm Loan Board. I think that was one of the platforms of his Federal Party prior to March 31st, and I think that they could well have been asked to proceed on that platform and make those changes. I still say that setting up a Provincial Board is duplication - duplication of services - duplication of costs. However, we have the Act before us and the job, as I see it, is to make a good Act out of this so that it will work here for Manitobans. So as we come to the committee stage I propose to have a number of changes that I think we should incorporate in this Act. I realize that this is not the time to go over clause by clause the matters in this Bill, but I think some of these could be considered as principles. For example, I propose to make a change in the make-up of the board of directors so that of the five members as proposed, two of them should be the nominees of the two major farm groups in Manitoba; one the nominee of the M.F.U., and one the nominee of the M.F.A.C. I think they should be taken into our confidence in this matter and their valuable experience should be used to make this Act one that will work for Manitoba farmers.
Proposed too, that we should have changes in the type of security that is acceptable for loans under this Bill. I notice that in the other, should I say complementary bill, providing capital for industry, there seems to be much more latitude in the type of security given or acceptable, and I think that we should give this consideration in this Bill as well. One of the greatest weaknesses of the Canadian Farm Loan Board for large sections of Manitoba is that farmers in those areas simply could not qualify. By those I mean the ranchers, and those people who are operating on rented land. The ranchers in particular - take my own constituency as an example along the shores of Lake Manitoba - the normal practice is to own a quarter section of land, generally low priced, and then they proceed to lease or rent two, three, four sections. Now under the basis of the Canadian Farm Loan Board, those people were almost completely excluded because they didn't have cultivated land as a rule - it was simply pasture, grazing land - it was very low value land. A great deal of it in those municipalities was available for a dollar an acre, simply to get it on the tax rolls of the municipality. So those people were excluded. Now, it seems to me that this Bill simply doesn't go far enough on this basis. It is well and fine that we say that forty percent can be made up of other chattels, but that simply isn't enough. If to start with, the amount of land owned by an individual is only, say a quarter section, at - let's be fair - five dollars an acre, $800.00; it simply doesn't provide him with any possibility of a loan. That, in my opinion, requires a change.
Another basic weakness of the Bill, as it stands before us now, is the rate of interest that the government proposes to charge. The Minister said yesterday that the rate has been set at six percent so that we will not compete with the Canadian Farm Loan Board. In short, Mr. Speaker, I can only conclude from that statement that the Minister was telling us that it is the intention of the government to present this Bill and put up the rate of interest so high that people, instead of coming to it, will go back to the Canadian Farm Loan Board. It is the intention, apparently, to discourage people from coming under this Act in making application for a loan. I didn't expect him to agree with me but if - fortunately the Hansard isn't operating quite as quickly as I would like and I haven't got exact copies of the Minister's speech as yet, but my notes certainly indicate that that was his statement - that the rate of six percent was set up so as not to compete with the Canadian Farm Loan Board. I beg your pardon?
MR. ROBLIN: Just your inferences are incorrect.
MR. MOLGAT: My inferences. Oh well now, I don't see what other inference could be gathered from that....
MR. ROBLIN: You're entitled to yours - I'm not complaining.
MR. MOLGAT: Thank you very much. The Minister is very kind today.
MR. ROBLIN: I'm always that way.
MR. MOLGAT: I hadn't noticed always. However, it does seem to me that this rate is definitely too high. If the intention of this Bill is to assist farmers, and that is what I want to see done with this Bill, then I propose that we shouldn't be setting rates of interest that tend to discourage people. We should be setting rates of interest that will make this Bill workable and that will encourage people on the contrary to come to us and borrow money. It is the only way that this Bill will be of any value. The matter of interest rate we can refer to the Canadian Farm Loan Board for example. They loan at five percent, yet we turn around and find that they are borrowing in turn from the Minister of Finance - the last borrowings with a rate of 4.375 percent; the previous borrowing, 4.125%, the previous borrowing, 4%; yet with a rate of 5% they still manage to show a profit on their operations, last year something in the order of $200,000.00. Now surely it isn't the intention of the government to make this Bill - this Act - a money making proposition for the Province of Manitoba. Surely the intention is to assist the farmers. Therefore the rate of interest should be based on that principle and that principle alone. Take, for example, someone who would get a loan of $25,000.00 under this Act. That is the maximum set; I think it is a fair and reasonable maximum. That difference between five and six percent means $250.00 a year additional
interest to the borrower - that is in the first year. It will decrease naturally as the capital goes down, but in the first year, $250.00 additional interest. That is a large amount of costs. In fact, it's more than our honourable friends in Ottawa have felt was a good payment to make under the deficiency plan that they had promised during the election. That has worked out to $200.00 maximum to any farmers.
My honourable friends across the way now propose an interest rate which would be even more than that. Charges cost $250.00 on the maximum loan allowed them. Now on that basis then, that the Canadian Farm - that our Bill should be for the purpose of assisting the farmers - not for the purpose of making a profit, I feel that it is important that the rate of interest should be reduced from what is recommended. On that matter of principle, Mr. Speaker, I propose to object to this Bill at this time, and I want to make it very clear that this is not a matter of obstruction. It is not a matter of not wanting to have this Bill go through at this Session of the Legislature - I am very anxious that it do. But I am only anxious to see this Bill, provided that it is satisfactory to the people of Manitoba. On that basis, Mr. Speaker, the expectation that the changes will be made when the Bill is presented back to us, I propose to move, seconded by the honourable the member for Birtle-Russell, that Bill No. 8 be not now read the second time but that it be resolved that in the opinion of this House, the rate of interest charges on loans to farmers be not more than five percent per annum.
[Mr. Speaker presented the resolution. ]
MR. SHEWMAN: Mr. Speaker, I wish to move, seconded by the honourable member from River Heights that the debate be adjourned.
[Mr. Speaker presented the motion and after a voice vote declared the motion carried. ]
MR. SPEAKER: Adjourned debate on Bill No. 12. The honourable member for Radisson.
MR. R. PAULLEY (Radisson): Mr. Speaker, in taking part in the debate on this Bill, I do so because to me it is of great importance. Under the circumstances, which we have found ourselves here in Canada, as in many other jurisdictions in the world in recent years, I must say at the offset that it is my firm conviction and belief, and I have no hesitation whatever of saying so in this House, that under our present economic system of society, that we can look forward for years and years, of the necessity of such types of legislation as this. Because, notwithstanding the rigors of winter or climatic changes, under a proper planned system of society we would not have to be worrying about giving of doles from public treasuries or methods of this manner in order to prevent the necessity of the application of able-bodied individuals to apply for social assistance or the likes of that, because in the context of the Bill, it clearly states that one of the purposes of the Bill is to provide some work or means of
receiving remuneration from those who have exhausted their unemployment insurance benefits and would become public charges. Having said that however, Mr. Speaker, I do say that a Bill of this nature is needed under the circumstances. I was somewhat amused the other day to see one of my old neighbours, so called, to tell us - who is now the Minister of Labour - to tell us that the bright, bright sunshine has peeked through the clouds of recession.
As a matter of fact, Mr. Speaker, according to the last available statistics of the Bureau - Dominion Bureau - we had about a hundred and twenty-odd thousand more unemployed at the beginning of August this year than we did a year ago. I wonder whether my honourable friend is aware of that? And starting out with 188,000 (approximately) of August 1st, of 1957, by March of this year we had reached about 617,000 people here in the Dominion of Canada seeking work. And if we started at that figure last August with a hundred and twenty-odd thousand less than we are starting this year, I would suggest to my honourable friend, the Minister of Labour, that he take off his rose-tinted glasses and peer into the future in the light of statistics. And I'm sure that one of his honourable colleagues there, who is such an expert on statistics, would help him in his peering and see what of I speak could well be a reality. We certainly do not look or hope for that. We also are hoping that the future will be far better than the past, but we must face the situation realistically.
While this Bill does intend to provide certain public works in co-operation with the federal and municipal governments for methods of alleviating for this winter the situation, I think that the situation is deeper than that. Now as to the Bill itself, I would have one or two comments to make, and I am somewhat concerned of the municipal relationship with ideas such as this. I had the honour of becoming the Mayor of Transcona back in 1946, and at that time, Mr. Speaker, we were still paying for works which were inaugurated by the last Conservative Government along the same basis as this is being proposed today, and I certainly hope that the contributions of the Provinical Government and also of the Federal Government to the municipalities will be of such a nature, that 15 to 16 years after the expenditures have been made, Municipal Councils are still not having to provide out of their current revenues for such projects. I think it is sometimes quite correctly said, that Conservative times are hard times, and if we reflect back to the years in which a similar program was set up of this - was started (and I'm referring to the '30s), I sincerely trust that the method of approach in this and the carrying out of it will be different. However, we welcome this measure as an immediate stop-gap.
I would say to the honourable Minister and some of the programs that are outlined here in the Bill itself, that some of our horticulturalists would be quite interested in how, under our climatic conditions that makes it impossible for us to go ahead with many works, we're going to be able to plant trees?
Other sections of the Bill I'm sure, Mr. Speaker, we will deal with in second submittage. But I would just like to say
again, in reference to this, that while we recognize the need for this at the present time, we still recognize that winter unemployment despite climatic conditions, will be with us while we have the system of society under which we are living.
MR. SPEAKER: Are you ready for the question?
MR. GREENLAY: I move, seconded by the Honourable the Member for Rhineland, that the debate be adjourned.
[Mr. Speaker presented the motion, and after a voice vote declared the motion carried. ]
MR. SPEAKER: Adjourned debate, Speech from the Throne and the amendments thereto. The Honourable the Member for Radisson.
MR. PAULLEY: Mr. Speaker, in taking part in the Throne Speech, I think that it is rather unlikely that I will speak on the main motion, so at this time I would like to offer my sincere congratulations to you on your election as Speaker of this House. Having had the opportunity, though only for a brief time, of knowing you personally, I can say, in my opinion, the House could not have chosen a better individual to be our guide and our leader here in the House, and therefore congratulate you.
I would like also, Sir, to congratulate the mover of the address to His Honour. As has been said by speakers who preceded me, he had acquitted the honour with distinction and I am sure that he is a valuable asset to the Government's Party and will make his place heard, and heard well, in this Assembly.
To the mover of the -- to the seconder of the resolution, I might say, Mr. Speaker, that we have had one or two dealings before. He is a gentleman whom I've always honoured and respected, and he along with the honourable member for St. Vital and myself at one time was on a board of arbitration in a labour dispute. I'm very glad to report to the House that on that occasion we were able to come to a unanimous decision, each of us giving a little and each of us taking a little, and I say to you, Sir, welcome to this House likewise.
To our new Premier, I would congratulate him on his move across the floor, and while his way may not be a rosy one and while it may or may not be brief, during his tenure of office I wish him every success. He is a man for whom likewise I have every respect.
And I would say of the now Leader of the Opposition, Mr. Speaker, that the other day when he was speaking, I believe it was on the reply to the Speech from the Throne, he took on himself a lot of the responsibilities of the defeat of the Liberal-Progressive Government. I think that we, the citizens of Manitoba, and particularly the younger citizens of our province, owe a great debt of gratitude for the work that the Honourable Leader of the Opposition has done in the past, and I hope will continue to do in the future for the benefit of us all. And I would like, Sir, to say this comment, in deference to his remarks the other day, that I noted that during the election that all too many of his so-called followers either omitted for one
reason or other the fact that they were supporters of the honourable gentleman, and I regretted it very much. And I have no hesitation in saying that were my philosophies the same philosophies as those held by the Leader of the Opposition, I would holler them to the roof tops and support him fully, and I think, Mr. Speaker, that that is one of the reasons why the honourable gentleman is sitting where he is rather than opposite.
Not because I'm an old-timer, because certainly I'm not, I would like to say a word of welcome to the newcomers in this House. I'm sure that be your stay long, or be it short, that you will find many good things come of the association of fellows of different views, different religions, nationalities. You will find them good fellows at heart. And I would like just to quote a word or two from one of the great civil servants that we had in the Province of Manitoba. I don't just remember them verbatim, Mr. Speaker, I'm referring to Murray Fisher who was the guiding light of the municipalities for so many years. I shall never forget his words when he said - "Do what you think is right. You might not win the next election, but at least you'll be able to hang your head on high."
And now, Mr. Speaker, insofar as the Throne Speech itself is concerned, I'm going to be rather brief, but I would like to make one or two comments on the points contained in it. It will be noted, and I'm sure that everybody expects it, that any amendment that we put forward from this group would be socialistic in nature. I'm sure that there was no disappointment because it was. And why? Why should we say that we firmly believe in the inauguration of the public ownership of natural gas - the public distribution of natural gas? It is quite logical for us to say that because we believe that the natural resources of the citizens of this great Dominion, and of this Province, rightly belong to the people and that in the exploitation of those natural resources during our time, which incidentally, may be depleted for generations yet unborn, that the benefits accruing from them should be - should accrue to the citizens concerned, without profit to individuals or to corporations.
This socialism isn't a new thing, Mr. Speaker, it has been going on. My honourable friends to my right and to my left, and their respective parties, have been part and parcel of the inauguration of many of the things that we consider today to be commonplace - which years ago would have been considered radical and socialistic. Every time we go to the post-box and pick up a letter socialism is in practice. Every time we turn on the tap at home socialism is in practice.
Here in the Province of Manitoba, thanks to the development of our power in recent years, every time we turn on a light globe we have socialism. So, Mr. Speaker, a few years ago, from the government, then led by the Honourable Member of the Opposition, thought that it was wise to take over the distribution and the generation of electrical energy here in the Province of Manitoba. Even the new Minister of Public Utilities today, announced a further contribution along the same line, so when we say in our Resolution that we believe in public ownership of this, that and the other, we are only carrying through those basic principles
which we believe in, and which our other two major parties, only when it suits their purpose, adopts. For instance, just recently we have had a commission travelling the length and breadth of the Dominion of Canada to deal with the monopoly on air transportation. We have individuals who, I am sure, that ascribe to the policies of either the Conservatives or the Liberals appearing before that commission, opposing the monopoly which is now held by the Trans-Canada Air Lines because it is no good, it's monopolistic. And yet on the other hand, Mr. Speaker, also vital questions of the distribution of gas, we have the adoption of a report which recommended a monopoly for the Greater Winnipeg area by private capital as against public ownership. So I say, Mr. Speaker, that while both Liberals and Conservatives will adopt, and have adopted in the past, socialistic ideals, they do it at the time when it just suits them and don't apply it throughout all of their utterances, and the times when they have the power. It'll come! The public ownership of the distribution of gas will come just as sure as I'm standing here saying so today; just as sure as many of the other socialistic ideas that have come from this corner of this House have been instituted into the legislation of the Province of Manitoba.
We're considering such questions as hospitalization, how we recall on the introduction of resolutions by our group in the past, the heads of both the present government and the then government heads put their hands up and shouted "Horrors". It's on the Statute books of the Dominion of Canada and the Province of Manitoba today: Improvements are necessary! Of course they're necessary and we, if we were elected the Government of the Province of Manitoba, there would be no question of those improvements.
The Honourable the Minister of Public Utilities, in his statement today, told us of the additions that are going to be made to the plant at Kelsey, out of public funds. What is the purpose? So that the vast, vast natural resources of our northland can be exploited and developed for private capital, and we say, without hesitation or equivocation, that revenues that are going to be derived from that exploitation should accrue to the benefit of the people of Manitoba to a greater degree than it has been in the past.
Yes, Mr. Speaker, we have just finished fighting an election. In that election there were three parties who laid a program before the citizens of Manitoba, and as a result, we're here today, all of us elected. But I do say this, and I say it most sincerely, that of the three parties that are here today, there is but one who didn't have to concoct election propaganda before the election and will not have to do it when the next election, whenever it may be, will not have to concoct it again. We stand by our basic fundamental principles and when those principles become the established principles of the people of Canada, we will have a society in which we'll all be proud of, even those who now oppose us.
[Mr. Speaker read the motion and called for a voice vote. ]
MR. GRAY: Mr. Speaker, I beg to move, seconded by the honourable member from St. John's that the debate be adjourned.
[Mr. Speaker read the motion and after a voice vote declared the motion carried. ]
MR. SPEAKER: Proposed resolution, the Honourable Member for Fisher.
MR. P. WAGNER (Fisher): Mr. Speaker, the subject matter of the Resolution is contained in the amendment to the amendment moved by our Leader, I would request the Resolution stand in my name, to be withdrawn.
MR. ROBLIN: To have leave to withdraw it now, I would suggest that we would give consent. [PAUSE] Yes, Mr. Speaker.
MR. SPEAKER: Does the honourable member have leave?
MR. CAMPBELL: Mr. Speaker, I think that's the correct procedure because I must say that I had thought of raising the same point, because, it seems to me that the one portion of the subamendment and this motion are very parallel and so certainly we would agree to its withdrawal.
MR. SPEAKER: Does the House agree to the withdrawal of this resolution? ... Adjourned debate on the proposed Resolution of Mr. Gray, the Honourable Member for Inkster. The Honourable Member for Winnipeg Centre has the floor.
MR. J. COWAN (Winnipeg Centre): Mr. Speaker, I am pleased that the Government is supporting this resolution introduced by the Honourable Member for Inkster, and I am pleased that the Leader of the Opposition and his party are evidently going to support this resolution. It is too bad that he didn't, that this Resolution wasn't supported by that party more than a year and a half ago when the Old Age Pension was only $40.00 a month. If it had been supported at that time, then the people, the old people of this Province would certainly be in a better position than they are today.
This, Mr. Speaker, is a proposal to help the Old Age Pensioners beyond the $55.00 pension. Help of this nature is being given in many of the other provinces: British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Ontario and the Yukon Territory. I am particularly pleased that this Resolution proposes additional help concerning housing for our old people, for a few dollars more does not always help the basic problem - the problem of, for many old people, of having adequate shelter.
If I will be permitted, I would like to make some references to some of my own personal knowledge with regards to the need of this housing for old people. I worked in respect of a Canadian Legion low rental housing project for forty, elderly, low income veterans, and I manage it now. I interviewed many of the applicants, and I found these people whom we have assisted; a Veteran who had been living for four years in two rooms in the upstairs of a house in the north-west, north end of our city and who had never been out of those rooms for four years until he moved into our project. He had been crippled with arthritis, and he was just as much a prisoner as any prisoner at Headingley, and if, you can well imagine what would have happened if a fire
had taken place in that house. And then, there was another, a blind veteran, who was living in rooms downtown, upstairs with his wife, who hadn't been out of his room, or down the stairs since he had had a stroke some months before. And then, there's another blind veteran, whose wife was partially blind, living in rooms on the third floor of a rooming house in the west-end, with all the bathroom facilities and all the water down on the second floor, and you can well imagine their plight, particularly on a hot summer day under a hot roof. Then there was another couple who lived in two rooms at the back of a store, lived on their $80.00 a month in these two rooms and paid $40.00 for rent, for water, electricity and fuel and then they couldn't keep their premises warm in spite of the fact that they had two stoves there. And then there was another couple who had lived in one room for 16 years and paid $35.00 a month rent for one room on the second floor. And, another couple, who when the man of the house retired, moved east of Winnipeg about ten miles to live in a small shack on a piece of land where living was cheaper, and last winter had to have an ambulance called out to this home on three different occasions to bring him into hospital, who needed to be nearer a hospital than he was when he was away out in the country. And then there were, was another couple, who lived in a suite and were paying $52.50 a month rent out of their $80.00 old age pension, but who fortunately, had had enough to carry them on from the sale of their former house out in Charleswood, but now, when we found them, their bank account was down to $170.00. What they were going to do when the bank account ran out, they didn't know. And then there was the other chap who was lame, and who has since lost his leg, and is one of our tenants. And another couple, where the husband was in hospital without any legs at all and who would likely have remained there the rest of his life, if we hadn't found him a decent place to live.
We have in our project some six veterans from the Boer War, ages 79 to 83; the oldest is 90; the oldest of our tenants is 92. About 40% of them are crippled. Our suites are all on the ground floor; each with a living room, bedroom, a bathroom, storage space and adequate facilities. The rent is $43.00 a month and it includes the heat, the water, electric stove and fridge and hot water, as well as drapes and blinds. The maximum income was set by us at $150.00 a month, but the average of the first 40 tenants was $112.00. Seven were under $100.00. This was financed by the members of the Canadian Legion and the Auxiliaries, putting up about $21,000.00; by the City of Winnipeg providing the land and by the Federal Government providing a loan of $177,000.00, over forty years at 3 3/4% interest. Our rent of $43.00 includes full tax. We are paying full taxes to the City of Winnipeg and you will realize, that tenants that have an income under $100.00 a month cannot pay a full rent of $43.00, and we were able to help those that couldn't with money, a thousand dollars put up by Ladies Auxiliary from a rent assistance fund. But we do find a similar project in West Kildonan, where the rent is $45.00 and where we find today some tenants able to carry on with great difficulty having only an income of $110.00 a month.
One of these, one of the features, I think,about the project
was that these elderly people all had something to do. It was not like being in a nursing home or a hostel: they all...each of them had a flower garden, each of them had their own place for things, each of them had their own meals to prepare. And, many of them had vegetable gardens and they looked after the whole landscaping of the whole project themselves.
While there is a great need for elderly couples for this type of project, there is still a greater need for single persons; for a single person, those on old age pensions particularly, only have an income of $55.00 a month, and they cannot possibly rent one of these suites. And so, I hope that this Government will take steps to make provisions for adequate housing for elderly single persons who are able to do their own cooking and look after their own housekeeping.
In Saskatachewan, in rural Saskatchewan, they have built a number of projects for couples in the rural parts, but they have found that the need is not so great for couples as it is for single people. Generally speaking, they say, in the rural parts of Saskatchewan, couples will have their own little homes, they will be able to get along so long as there are two of them there, but the time comes when one passes away and the other one isn't able to cope with the fires, and doesn't like to be perhaps left on the edge of town where they are, where they have not very much company, or very many visitors.
And so there is a great need for accommodation for single people, and I hope that this Government will provide greater help for that group than has been provided in the past. As a matter of fact, I don't think any accommodation has been built with the help of Central Mortgage Funds or with the help of the funds from this Provincial Government for single people. Central Mortgage requires that, what accommodation be self-contained; the result is that the rent must be around $38.00 or $40.00 a month to carry everything so that we perhaps should even consider, perhaps as an experiment, building some accomodation whereby the bathroom facilities would be shared, and so, perhaps we could reduce the cost by $10.00 or $15.00 a month. We might do that as an experiment to see the reaction of the old people and to see the reaction of the public to such an experiment.
We have, perhaps, we could make use, to help these older single people, perhaps as people concerned would be willing that we make some use of that money in Manitoba Hospital Service Fund to help with housing our old people, for surely that would be a worthy project and surely that money would provide a wonderful help for thousands of the older people in this Province. It is the older, single people that we should be particularly concerned with in this regard.
Now, we have this need for housing that we have mentioned, it is the type of housing which is most natural for old people, where they can be by themselves, where they can have their own little home. It is the type of housing most of them like if they are able to take care of themselves, and it is the cheapest for the taxpayers as well. But there comes a time, when these older people cannot look after themselves, and so we have the need for the hostel type of accommodation, where their meals
are provided for them, and where they have the waitresses and the cooks and so on, and so, we need some of that accommodation, particularly in some of the rural parts of Manitoba. I understand there is no such home between, excepting for one, north of Dauphin, only one of them, so we have the need for that type of home, where the people will be provided with their lodging and with their board. Then we need a hostel, perhaps too, for some of those patients who come to the city, come to the city perhaps from Churchill, and they require perhaps treatment only once a week, and if we had some accommodation for those people, the hostel accommodation for those people, we would certainly be relieving our hospital beds, $18.00 hospital beds, of a great expense and also providing the service that was required.
Then we have, as we go along further, those people who need some nursing care and we have the need for these provincial nursing homes, which are mentioned in this Resolution with physiotherapy, and with rehabilitation schemes so that we can try and put these people back on their feet so they can look after themselves. The, in some districts in Manitoba, we have for our old people only ordinary hospitals, and in many cases, these people could be taken out of those expensive beds if there was this other accommodation available for them. A home, such as we have built at the Legion, as a matter of fact, many of those people, are in worse health, I am sure than many people who occupy beds in our nursing homes and hospitals. But because they are there on ground level, no stairs, and all conveniences, they are able to look after themselves very, very well.
And, I am particularly pleased that this resolution, that the Minister has announced, that a director of housing is going to be appointed, so that there will be leadership and help given throughout this Province to organizations who will help to construct and operate these schemes. This is something that is lacking in this Province and something that has been provided for in other Provinces, and that help, I know, will be of great value because quite a lot of work is involved in building one of these projects.
The results of providing for better accommodation for our older people in this Province will be worthwhile, and I am hoping that this accommodation will be provided in the very near future and certainly a great deal of it next year.
MR. D. ORLIKOW (St. John's): Mr. Speaker, the Honourable Leader of the Opposition claimed yesterday, his Government had not opposed greater assistance to old age pensioners. Former Government answered every plea for assistance which was made in previous times...
MR. CAMPBELL: ...contradict my honourable friend, that's not what I said.
MR. ORLIKOW: Mr. Speaker, I haven't the Hansard here but in substance I'm satisfied that that is what the Honourable Leader of the Opposition meant.
MR. CAMPBELL: Fortunately my honourable friend is forced to take my statement on the matter, if he doesn't take that statement, I shall have to tell the House what I said. I hesitate to do that because I've said it so many times before. The point that I'm trying to make, my honourable friend, is that we didn't say "Where is the money coming from?" We said the money was coming from the taxpayers. We said that the reason that we were not willing to go along with the resolution that was proposed was not because of the money, not because there wasn't need, but because we thought the same job could be done better by the Municipal...
MR. PAULLEY: May I interrupt the Honourable Member, but is he speaking to the resolution?
MR. SPEAKER: Order. The Honourable Member for St. John's must accept the explanation from the Leader of the Opposition.
MR. ORLIKOW: I accept, Mr. Speaker. Had the Honourable Leader of the Opposition let me go on for one more sentence, I would have said, I would have pointed out that what he said yesterday and what he has said in the past that it would have been better to have let the local municipalities do the job. Well, Mr. Speaker, the proof of the pudding is in the eating. Not one municipality to my knowledge, ever availed itself of this offer which was repeatedly made by the former Government. As a former, as a present and former member of a municipal council, as the Honourable Member for Winnipeg Centre is also, I know, and the Honourable Leader of the Opposition ought to have known, that the job which the municipalities have had to do with the last years and particularly since the end of World War II, of providing the services which they already have the responsibility for doing have been so great that they have not been able to accept the responsibility which was so easily passed to them by the former Government and they would not at the present time do it either. So, that in effect, Mr. Speaker, when the former Government was saying that the municipalities ought to initiate it, they were saying that they were not prepared to give assistance to the old age pensioners.
Mr. Speaker, we welcome the statement made yesterday by the Minister. We welcome the fact that the present Government now supports increased assistance for old age pensioners. I would point out, Mr. Speaker, that this Government is not pioneering in the field of old age assistance in the Dominion of Canada. In fact this Province is ten to fifteen years behind nearly every other province in Canada. Several provinces already provide supplementary assistance to those recipients of old age security or old age assistance. To mention just a few, we have British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario and Yukon. Only in Ontario, does the province operate a system in which the municipalities are asked to contribute financially. In British Columbia, Alberta, and Saskatchewan hospital care and a comprehensive range of medical services are provided to the old age pensioners. Medical services in these three provinces include medical and surgical services, if
necessary form specialists, in the home, doctor's office, or in hospitals, and also dental, optical and certain other services are provided. In 1955 and 1956, over 29,000 people on old age assistance, mother's allowance and blind allowance were eligible for hospital services, medical services, drugs, dental and optical services in the Province of Saskatchewan. It is estimated that between 60 and 65% of the people availed themselves of this service.
Now the Honourable Member for Winnipeg Centre talked about the need for housing for the old people. The Province of Saskatchewan, passed a Housing Act in 1953, which made provision for the construction of low rental housing and other accommodation for aged, needy, and infirm and blind persons. Construction under these provisions by churches, charitable and fraternal organizations and municipalities was encouraged. The act made it possible for municipal and other groups to sponsor and incorporate limited dividends or non-profit housing companies to qualify for low interest loans from Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation. Construction of low rental housing projects for elderly citizens was promoted and encouraged by provincial government support, although the projects are a local responsibility. The Provincial Government in Saskatchewan extends technical assistance and leadership in municipal groups and religious and fraternal organizations interested in the organization and incorporation of limited dividend or non-profit housing companies, with the objective of providing appropriate living quarters and accommodation for elderly persons. Provincial Government also pay a maintenance grant of forty dollars per annum for each self-contained unit, and $40.00 per annum for bed in a hospital. The projects are initially motivated by the people in the local districts, but, by young and middle aged citizens who recognize the need and the right of their elderly citizens to the security of a home of their own at rental they can afford to pay within the limits of a restricted income. The entire organization, construction, operation of each project is a local responsibility.
At the end of 1957, Mr. Speaker, there were in the Province of Saskatchewan, 52 low-rental housing projects. The total value of these projects was approximately ten million dollars, of which the Provincial Government had put forward close to two million dollars.
And Mr. Speaker, we welcome the announcement of the Government that they will move in this direction. We welcome it because our group pioneered in this field. Old age pensions were first proposed nationally and first established on the suggestion of the founder of the C.C.F., that great Canadian, J. S. Woodsworth. We have always pressed for a decent standard of living for our old people and we will support any and every proposal made by any group to improve the conditions of the old people in this province.
MR. SPEAKER: Are you ready for the question?
MR. MARTIN: I beg to move, seconded by the Member from Roblin that the debate be adjourned.
[Mr. Speaker read the motion and after a voice vote declared the motion carried. ]
MR. ROBLIN: Mr. Speaker, I beg to move that the House do...
MR. GRAY: Mr. Speaker, but the motion is adjourned. It is moved. Can the gentleman inform the House whether there is going to be a Session tomorrow night?
MR. ROBLIN: The answer to that is yes, Mr. Speaker, if it meets the wishes of the House. I think that was the understanding at which we began our business last week. I would like to now move, Mr. Speaker, seconded by the Honourable the Minister of Mines and Natural Resources, that the House do now adjourn, and stand adjourned until eight P.M. this evening.
[Mr. Speaker read the motion and after a voice vote declared the motion carried, and the House adjourned until 8:00 o'clock in the evening. ]
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