Assemblée Législative de la Nouvelle-Écosse

Les travaux de la Chambre ont repris le
21 septembre 2017

HANSARD 03/04-48

DEBATES AND PROCEEDINGS

Speaker: Honourable Murray Scott

Published by Order of the Legislature by Hansard Reporting Services and printed by the Queen's Printer.

Available on INTERNET at http://nslegislature.ca/index.php/proceedings/hansard/

Annual subscriptions available from the Office of the Speaker.

First Session

TUESDAY, MAY 18, 2004

TABLE OF CONTENTS PAGE
PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS:
TPW: Cap Rouge Rd. - Pave, Mr. Michel Samson 3828
TPW: Mahon Rd. - Upgrade, Mr. F. Corbett 3829
Bill No. 62: Clause 46 - Withdraw, Mr. R. MacKinnon 3829
Richmond Co.: Roads - Upgrade, Mr. Michel Samson 3829
PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES:
Law Amendments Committee, Hon. M. Baker 3830
Private and Local Bills Committee, Mr. Manning MacDonald 3830
GOVERNMENT NOTICES OF MOTION:
Res. 1809, MS Awareness Mo. (05/04) - Recognize, Hon. A. MacIsaac 3831
Vote - Affirmative 3831
Res. 1810, Cooke Aquaculture - Dev.: Commitment - Recognize,
Hon. C. d'Entremont 3831
Vote - Affirmative 3832
Res. 1811, Rural Mun. Gov't. - Anniv. (125th), Hon. B. Barnet 3832
Vote - Affirmative 3833
Res. 1812, Health - Paramedics: Impact - Recognize, Hon. A. MacIsaac 3833
Vote - Affirmative 3834
Res. 1813, Health Prom.: Injury Reduction - Commitment,
Hon. Rodney MacDonald 3834
Vote - Affirmative 3834
INTRODUCTION OF BILLS:
No. 83, Emergency Services Protection Act, Mr. W. Langille 3835
No. 84, Motor Vehicle Act, Mr. K. Deveaux 3835
NOTICES OF MOTION:
Res. 1814, SMU - Hon. Degs.: Recipients - Congrats., Mr. D. Dexter 3835
Vote - Affirmative 3836
Res. 1815, Sask.: Recall Legislation - Support, Mr. Manning MacDonald 3836
Res. 1816, Cotton, Amy: Achievements - Congrats.,
Hon. Rodney MacDonald 3837
Vote - Affirmative 3837
Res. 1817, Astral Dr. JHS: Cheerleading Team - Championship,
Mr. K. Deveaux 3838
Vote - Affirmative 3838
Res. 1818, Prem.: Power Rate Increases - Motivation,
Mr. R. MacKinnon 3838
Res. 1819, Gov't. (Can.): Fuel Excise Tax - Cut, Mr. B. Taylor 3839
Res. 1820, Buffalo Club - Anniv. (50th), Mr. K. Deveaux 3840
Vote - Affirmative 3840
Res. 1821, Maskwa Aquatic Club - Anniv. (30th), Ms. D. Whalen 3841
Vote - Affirmative 3841
Res. 1822, Kentville & Dist. Kinsmen Club - Anniv. (40th), Mr. M. Parent 3841
Vote - Affirmative 3842
Res. 1823, Gray, Eva Mae - Sambro: Dinner Theatre - Congrats.,
Ms. M. Raymond 3842
Vote - Affirmative 3843
Res. 1824, Ross, Dr. Joyce: E. Preston - Contributions, Mr. K. Colwell 3843
Vote - Affirmative 3843
Res. 1825, Carter, Rose Sutherland: Book Publication - Congrats.,
Mr. R. Chisholm 3844
Vote - Affirmative 3844
Res. 1826, Bank Mergers - Guidelines: Jobs - Campaign Commitments,
Mr. D. Dexter 3845
Res. 1827, Gauthier, Justin: Hockey Medal - Congrats., Mr. L. Glavine 3845
Vote - Affirmative 3846
Res. 1828, Cormier, Joe - Lockview HS Sr. Concert Band: Efforts -
Recognize, Mr. G. Hines 3846
Vote - Affirmative 3847
Res. 1829, McRuer, Sue: E. Hants Mun. - Award, Mr. J. MacDonell 3847
Vote - Affirmative 3847
Res. 1830, St. Francis de Sales: CWL - Parish Efforts,
Mr. Michel Samson 3848
Vote - Affirmative 3848
Res. 1831, Maillet, Father Leo: Ordination - Anniv. (50th),
Hon. C. d'Entremont 3848
Vote - Affirmative 3849
Res. 1832, TPW - Hwy. 4: Paving (2004) - Prioritize, Mr. C. Parker 3849
Res. 1833, CCRA Commun. Vol. Income Tax Prog.: Vols. - Commend,
Mr. H. Theriault 3850
Vote - Affirmative 3850
Res. 1834, Nelson, Bob - Yar. FD: Contributions - Recognize,
Hon. R. Hurlburt 3851
Vote - Affirmative 3851
Res. 1835, MacNeil, Duggah: Sydney Acad. Hockey Prog. - Dedication,
Mr. G. Gosse 3851
Vote - Affirmative 3852
Res. 1836, Grant-Smith, Joyce: Book Launch - Congrats., Mr. S. McNeil 3852
Vote - Affirmative 3853
Res. 1837, Hilburt, Barbara - New Germany: Dedication - Thank,
Hon. M. Baker 3853
Vote - Affirmative 3853
Res. 1838, RCL Calais Br. 162 - Anniv. (25th),
Mr. David Wilson (Sackville-Cobequid) 3854
Vote - Affirmative 3854
Res. 1839, E. Preston Day Care Ctr. - Anniv. (30th), Mr. K. Colwell 3854
Vote - Affirmative 3855
Res. 1840, St. Joseph's Elem. (Sydney Mines) Peace Init., Hon. C. Clarke 3855
Vote - Affirmative 3856
Res. 1841, Normandy Vets. - Recognize: D-Day Ceremonies -
Attendance Encourage, Mr. W. Estabrooks 3856
Vote - Affirmative 3857
Res. 1842, Samson, Brian & Edgar/Prem. Group: Growth - Congrats.,
Mr. Michel Samson 3857
Vote - Affirmative 3858
Res. 1843, TPW/HRM - Timberlea-Prospect: Paving (2004) - Identify,
Mr. W. Estabrooks 3858
Res. 1844, Drish, John - Apprenticeship Award, Mr. H. Theriault 3858
Vote - Affirmative 3859
ORAL QUESTIONS PUT BY MEMBERS:
No. 475, Serv. N.S. & Mun. Rel. - Fair Marketing Practices: Action -
Details, Mr. D. Dexter 3860
No. 476, Health: Info System - Delay Explain,
Mr. David Wilson (Glace Bay) 3861
No. 477, TCH - Arts Coun.: Dismantling - Explain,
Mr. David Wilson (Sackville-Cobequid) 3863
No. 478, TCH - Arts Coun.: Meetings - Details, Mr. S. McNeil 3864
No. 479, Fin. - Gas Prices: Tax Windfall - Usage, Mr. D. Dexter 3865
No. 480, Econ. Dev. - Sydney Daycare Ctrs.: Summer Jobs -
Funding, Mr. Manning MacDonald 3866
No. 481, Ins. - Rate Increases: Publication - Time Frame, Mr. D. Dexter 3868
No. 482, Gaming Auth. - Anl. Reports: Lack - Explain, Ms. D. Whalen 3869
No. 483, Com. Serv. - Wood St. Ctr.: Client - Case Details,
Mr. David Wilson (Sackville-Cobequid) 3870
No. 484, Health - OxyContin Problem: Action - Immediacy, Mr. G. Gosse 3872
No. 485, WCB - Unfunded Liability: Control - Details, Mr. K. Colwell 3873
No. 486, Health - Self-Managed Attendant Care: Pilot Proj. -
Permanence Implement, Mr. J. Pye 3874
No. 487, Energy - Dep. Min.: Search - Details, Mr. Michel Samson 3876
No. 488, TPW: Alma-Mt. Thom Strategic Planning Group - Assist,
Mr. C. Parker 3878
No. 489, Environ. & Lbr. - Orangedale: Water Supply -
Assistance Details, Mr. Gerald Sampson 3879
GOVERNMENT BUSINESS:
PUBLIC BILLS FOR SECOND READING:
No. 64, Capital Region Transportation Authority Act 3880
Mr. David Wilson (Sackville-Cobequid) 3880
Mr. R. MacKinnon 3889
Ms. J. Massey 3904
Adjourned debate 3909
PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES:
Law Amendments Committee, Hon. R. Russell 3909
HOUSE RESOLVED INTO CWH ON BILLS AT 3:51 P.M. 3910
HOUSE RECONVENED AT 3:56 P.M. 3910
CWH REPORTS 3910
PRIVATE AND LOCAL BILLS FOR SECOND READING:
No. 82, Halifax Regional Water Commission Act 3911
Mr. G. Hines 3911
Mr. K. Deveaux 3911
Mr. G. Hines 3912
Vote - Affirmative 3913
PRIVATE MEMBERS' PUBLIC BILLS FOR SECOND READING:
No. 84, Motor Vehicle Act 3913
Mr. K. Deveaux 3913
Mr. Michel Samson 3914
Hon. R. Russell 3915
Mr. K. Deveaux 3916
Vote - Affirmative 3916
ADJOURNMENT, House rose to meet again on Wed., May 19th at 2:00 p.m. 3917
NOTICES OF MOTION UNDER RULE 32(3):
Res. 1845, Kynock Resources: Commun. Generosity - Thank,
Hon. B. Barnet 3918
Res. 1846, Squires Const.: Commun. Generosity - Thank, Hon. B. Barnet 3918
Res. 1847, Johnston, Mike: Commun. Generosity - Thank,
Hon. B. Barnet 3919
Res. 1848, Roofmasters: Commun. Generosity - Thank, Hon. B. Barnet 3919
Res. 1849, The Roofing Connection: Commun. Generosity - Thank,
Hon. B. Barnet 3920
Res. 1850, Anchor Plumbing: Commun. Generosity - Thank,
Hon. B. Barnet 3920
Res. 1851, Mapleleaf Seamless Eavestroughing: Commun. Generosity -
Thank, Hon. B. Barnet 3921
Res. 1852, T. Power Painting: Commun. Generosity - Thank,
Hon. B. Barnet 3921
Res. 1853, Hfx. Insulators: Commun. Generosity - Thank, Hon. B. Barnet 3922
Res. 1854, A. Sinclair Const.: Commun. Generosity - Thank,
Hon. B. Barnet 3922
Res. 1855, Traditional Cabinets: Commun. Generosity - Thank,
Hon. B. Barnet 3923
Res. 1856, Wacky's Carpet & Flooring: Commun. Generosity -
Thank, Hon. B. Barnet 3923
Res. 1857, Taskmasters Contracting: Commun. Generosity - Thank,
Hon. B. Barnet 3924
Res. 1858, NFL Heating: Commun. Generosity - Thank, Hon. B. Barnet 3924
Res. 1859, Envirowaste: Commun. Generosity - Thank, Hon. B. Barnet 3925
Res. 1860, Lakeland Drywall: Commun. Generosity - Thank,
Hon. B. Barnet 3925
Res. 1861, Kynock, Vera: Commun. Generosity - Thank, Hon. B. Barnet 3926
Res. 1862, Grabo, Ray: Commun. Generosity - Thank, Hon. B. Barnet 3926
Res. 1863, Masters, John: Commun. Generosity - Thank, Hon. B. Barnet 3927
Res. 1864, Smith, Hugh: Commun. Generosity - Thank, Hon. B. Barnet 3927
Res. 1865, DeRoach, Sheldon: Commun. Generosity - Thank,
Hon. B. Barnet 3928
Res. 1866, Diremigio, Dario: Commun. Generosity - Thank,
Hon. B. Barnet 3928
Res. 1867, Mitten Vinyl Inc.: Commun. Generosity - Thank,
Hon. B. Barnet 3929
Res. 1868, Greg Burke Electrical: Commun. Generosity - Thank,
Hon. B. Barnet 3929
Res. 1869, DC Siding: Commun. Generosity - Thank, Hon. B. Barnet 3930
Res. 1870, Argyle Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions, Hon. B. Barnet 3930
Res. 1871, Barrington Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions,
Hon. B. Barnet 3931
Res. 1872, Chester Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions, Hon. B. Barnet 3931
Res. 1873, Clare Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions, Hon. B. Barnet 3932
Res. 1874, Colchester Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions,
Hon. B. Barnet 3932
Res. 1875, Cumberland Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions,
Hon. B. Barnet 3933
Res. 1876, Digby Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions, Hon. B. Barnet 3934
Res. 1877, E. Hants Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions,
Hon. B. Barnet 3934
Res. 1878, Antigonish Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions,
Hon. B. Barnet 3935
Res. 1879, Annapolis Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions,
Hon. B. Barnet 3935
Res. 1880, Guysborough Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions,
Hon. B. Barnet 3936
Res. 1881, Inverness Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions,
Hon. B. Barnet 3937
Res. 1882, Kings Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions, Hon. B. Barnet 3937
Res. 1883, Lunenburg Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions,
Hon. B. Barnet 3938
Res. 1884, Pictou Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions, Hon. B. Barnet 3938
Res. 1885, Queens Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions, Hon. B. Barnet 3939
Res. 1886, Richmond Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions,
Hon. B. Barnet 3940
Res. 1887, Shelburne Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions,
Hon. B. Barnet 3940
Res. 1888, Yarmouth Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions,
Hon. B. Barnet 3941
Res. 1889, Victoria Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions, Hon. B. Barnet 3941
Res. 1890, W. Hants Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions,
Hon. B. Barnet 3942
Res. 1891, St. Mary's Mun.: Mun. Gov't. Serv. - Traditions,
Hon. B. Barnet 3943
Res. 1892, Belliveau, Susan: Springhill-Parrsboro Record -
Newspaper Award, The Speaker 3943
Res. 1893, McGregor, Vera M. - Birthday (75th), Mr. W. Dooks 3944
Res. 1894, Laybolt, Fred & Marion - Anniv. (50th), Mr. W. Dooks 3944
Res. 1895, McKay, Robert & Doreen - Anniv. (50th), Mr. W. Dooks 3945
Res. 1896, Palmer, Hilda & Kenneth - Anniv. (50th), Mr. W. Dooks 3945
Res. 1897, Faulkner, Edmund & Sheila - Anniv. (50th), Mr. W. Dooks 3946
Res. 1898, Russell, Bub & Maureen - Anniv. (50th), Mr. W Dooks 3946
Res. 1899, Jeddore United Baptist Church: Vols. - Thank, Mr. W. Dooks 3947

[Page 3827]

HALIFAX, TUESDAY, MAY 18, 2004

Fifty-ninth General Assembly

First Session

12:00 NOON

SPEAKER

Hon. Murray Scott

DEPUTY SPEAKERS

Mr. James DeWolfe, Ms. Joan Massey, Mr. Russell MacKinnon

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. Before we begin the daily routine, the subject for this evening's late debate was submitted by the honourable member for Hants East:

Therefore be it resolved that as the largest community in Nova Scotia without its own high school, Eastern Passage requires this government to move on construction of one to meet this serious need.

This will be debated this evening at 6:00 p.m.

The honourable member for Pictou East on an introduction.

MR. JAMES DEWOLFE: Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased and honoured this afternoon to introduce a couple in the Speaker's Gallery all the way from New Glasgow, Pictou County, my daughter Jennifer and her husband, Colin. Jennifer is a bank manager, Colin is, for the benefit of the Minister of Education, a teacher in waiting and I would ask them to rise and receive the warm welcome of the House. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: We certainly welcome the member's family to the gallery today.

3827

[Page 3828]

The honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley on an introduction.

MR. BROOKE TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, I'm profoundly privileged to introduce a Grade 8 class. There are 46 students who attend Musquodoboit Rural High School out in the beautiful Musquodoboit Valley. I would like to introduce their teachers, Garth Perrin and Tracy Chute as well as their chaperones, Lissa Woodworth, Tammy Isenor, Crystal MacDonald and Laurie Brisebois. I had the privilege of speaking to the social studies class last Wednesday and I want to thank them again for the wonderful mug inscribed with the MRHS insignia. I would ask our guests to rise and receive a warm welcome from the Legislature. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: We certainly welcome our young guests to the gallery today and hope they enjoy the proceedings.

The honourable Minister of Human Resources.

HON. CAROLYN BOLIVAR-GETSON: Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to welcome to the House today in the Speaker's Gallery, Cosma Kabazi. Cosma is working with the Public Service Commission for the next four months under the Summer Diversity Program. Cosma is currently a student at Saint Mary's University, where he is working on his commerce degree. I would ask the House to welcome Cosma. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: I certainly welcome that gentleman to the gallery, as well.

We will being the daily routine.

PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Richmond.

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition and the operative clause reads: "On behalf of the residents of Cap Rouge Road (former Joshua Road) we the undersign are petitioning the government to get our road paved this year. The condition of our road is deplorable and unacceptable and we feel we deserve to have our road paved. We have been waiting far too long and we need and want our road to be paved." This has been signed by all the local residents on that road and I have affixed my signature.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

The honourable member for Cape Breton Centre.

[Page 3829]

MR. FRANK CORBETT: Mr. Speaker, I table this petition on behalf of the residents of Mahon Road in Lingan and the operative clause reads: "The following is a petition by the current residents of Mahon Road, Lingan, to achieve the formal listing with the Department of Transportation and Public Works of this road. We also want the road placed on the list for upgrading and pavement. Presently this road is in deplorable condition due to countless potholes and a lack of proper drainage. This area now houses nine family dwellings with the possibility of new family homes being built in the near future." There are 33 names on this petition and I have affixed mine.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

The honourable member for Cape Breton West.

MR. RUSSELL MACKINNON: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition on behalf of representatives from the Nova Scotia Government Employees Union, with regard to the 1 per cent contribution rate for the Public Service Pension Plan. The operative clause being: ". . . we the undersigned call on the Hamm government to withdraw Clause 46 of Bill 62 in favour of an extensive round of discussions with NSGEU and CUPE that will conclude by the end of 2004 about longer-term solutions to the funding problems of the Plan and the possibility of joint governance or trusteeship." Mr. Speaker, I have also affixed my signature.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

The honourable member for Richmond.

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition and the operative clause reads: "We the residents, taxpayers and voters of Cleveland, Grantville, Hureauville and Lower River Inhabitants wish to express our great dissatisfaction with the deplorable condition of our road . . . This road serves not only the local residents but also is the main crossroad for traffic to and from highway #105 and #4 to the Fleur de Lis Highway. Because of the large volume of traffic much of which is heavy equipment and school buses and also the fact that the existing asphalt is approximately 30 years old, this road is in need of major repairs, replacement, resurfacing. This road along with most other roads in the area are not only causing damage to vehicles but have also become a serious safety hazard. We would appreciate your favorable attention given to the serious condition of the road during the 2004 paving season." This is signed by local residents on these roads and I have affixed my signature.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Justice.

[Page 3830]

HON. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker, as Chairman of the Committee on Law Amendments, I am directed to report that the committee has met and considered the following bill:

Bill No. 70 - Municipal Law Amendment (2004) Act.

and the committee recommends this bill to the favourable consideration of the House, without amendments.

MR. SPEAKER: Ordered that this bill be referred to the Committee of the Whole House on Bills.

The honourable member for Cape Breton South.

MR. MANNING MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the Chairman of the Committee on Private and Local Bills, I am directed to report that the committee has met and considered the following bills:

Bill No. 54 - Saint Peter's Evangelical Lutheran Church Incorporation Act.

Bill No. 55 - Lenihan (Municipality of the District of Chester) Retiring Allowance Act.

Bill No. 56 - Nova Scotia Federation of Anglers and Hunters Act.

Bill No. 60 - Antigonish Farmers' Mutual Insurance Company Act.

Bill No. 69 - United Way of Halifax Region Act.

and the committee recommends these bills to the favourable consideration of the House, each without amendments.

[12:15 p.m.]

MR. SPEAKER: Ordered that these bills be referred to the Committee of the Whole House on Bills.

TABLING REPORTS, REGULATIONS AND OTHER PAPERS

STATEMENTS BY MINISTERS

[Page 3831]

GOVERNMENT NOTICES OF MOTION

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Health.

RESOLUTION NO. 1809

HON. ANGUS MACISAAC: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas the month of May has been designated National Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month; and

Whereas multiple sclerosis is the most common neurological disease affecting young adults in Canada, a chronic disabling disease affecting an estimated 50,000 Canadians; and

Whereas the MS Society of Canada and its Atlantic branch support MS research and services for people with the disease and their families;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House recognize May 2004 as Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month, and acknowledge the MS Society's research and dedication to moving us closer to finding out what causes this disease.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries.

RESOLUTION NO. 1810

HON. CHRISTOPHER D'ENTREMONT: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Cooke Aquaculture has invested in the production of juvenile codfish at its Mink Cove aquaculture facility in Digby County; and

[Page 3832]

Whereas Cooke Aquaculture is the only commercial aquaculture facility currently producing juvenile codfish in Canada; and

Whereas cod is expected to become a new aquaculture species, and companies like Cooke Aquaculture will make Nova Scotia a world leader in its development;

Therefore be it resolved that this House recognize Cooke Aquaculture for their commitment to new species aquaculture development and to provide economic opportunities in rural Nova Scotia.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations.

RESOLUTION NO. 1811

HON. BARRY BARNET: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of our municipal units well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government,

[Page 3833]

providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality, and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities".

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Health.

RESOLUTION NO. 1812

HON. ANGUS MACISAAC: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas May 16th to May 22nd is EHS Week all across Canada and EHS paramedics, communications officers and other personnel are among the best trained in North America; and

Whereas this year's theme - EHS: There When it Matters Most - reflects the fact that Nova Scotians can be confident in knowing that, in their time of need, a team of talented health care professionals will be there to help; and

Whereas our integrated service system combined with the use of the latest technology makes our EHS system the envy of other Canadian and American jurisdictions;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House recognize the substantial impact that paramedics make in the lives of Nova Scotians each and every day and acknowledge their commitment to providing quality patient care.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

[Page 3834]

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Health Promotion.

RESOLUTION NO. 1813

HON. RODNEY MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas falls are the leading cause of injury among seniors, affecting one in every three seniors; and

Whereas preventing falls is one of the three priority areas of the provincial Injury Prevention Strategy, developed in collaboration with injury stakeholders; and

Whereas the Office of Health Promotion today announced $300,000 over the next three years towards Preventing Falls Together, a project of Community Links;

Therefore be it resolved that this House congratulate Community Links and others who are committed to reducing injury among seniors, among all Nova Scotians.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Colchester North.

MR. WILLIAM LANGILLE: Mr. Speaker, before I introduce a bill, I would like permission to make an introduction - thank you very much.

[Page 3835]

I draw the attention of the members to the Speaker's Gallery where we have a number of professional people here today. As I name the individuals, would you please rise? We have with us the Municipal Association of Police Personnel. Representing the Halifax Regional Police, the President, John Gardiner, Mary MacDonald, Ferance Barna, Jeannie Rankin, Roger Sayer; and with the Police Association of Nova Scotia, we have with us today the Executive Director, Joe Ross, their solicitor, Dave Fisher; Truro Police Service we have Randy MacKenzie, Wayne Mott; with the New Glasgow Police Service we have Dwayne Rutledge and the President of the Police Association of Nova Scotia, Eric McNeil; and finally, last but not least, the person who inspired this legislation, from the Truro Police Service, Sherry Roberts.

INTRODUCTION OF BILLS

Bill No. 83 - Entitled an Act to Require the Taking of Blood Samples to Protect Victims of Crime, Emergency Service Workers, Good Samaritans and Other Persons. (Mr. William Langille)

MR. SPEAKER: Ordered that this bill be read a second time on a future day.

I'd like to say that it's wonderful to see the members of the police service and emergency workers here in Province House today. We certainly welcome your attendance here at the introduction of this bill and we hope you enjoy the proceedings. It's great to see you. Thank you.

Bill No. 84 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 293 of the Revised Statutes of 1989. The Motor Vehicle Act. (Mr. Kevin Deveaux)

MR. SPEAKER: Ordered this bill be read a second time on a future day.

NOTICES OF MOTION

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the Official Opposition.

RESOLUTION NO. 1814

MR. DARRELL DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Saint Mary's University, known for its community outreach projects both in Canada and internationally, will bestow honorary doctorate degrees upon individuals who have made significant contributions to our society during Spring Convocation on May 21, 2004; and

[Page 3836]

Whereas former City Councillor and Mayor for the City of Dartmouth and decorated veteran, Daniel Brownlow and newspaper publisher and Red Cross Humanitarian Award winner Graham Dennis are two recipients of the Doctor of Civil Law; and

Whereas Burris Devanney, educator and one of the forces behind the Nova Scotia Gambia Association will also receive a Doctor of Civil Law;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this Legislative Assembly congratulate Daniel Brownlow, Burris Devanney and Graham Dennis for being chosen as recipients of honorary doctorate degrees by Saint Mary's University and recognize their outstanding contribution to society.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Cape Breton South.

RESOLUTION NO. 1815

MR. MANNING MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas the 2004 Saskatchewan Budget raises the PST, taxes campfires, closes provincial parks, increases user fees, reviving bracket creep; and

Whereas this Saskatchewan Budget is a step backwards for that province and will no doubt slow their economy and increase out-migration; and

Whereas in their election platform the NDP made no mention of increasing taxes;

Therefore be it resolved that this House support the call for recall legislation in Saskatchewan allowing voters to fire their MLAs and force a by-election.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 3837]

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

I hear several Noes.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable Minister of Tourism, Culture and Heritage.

RESOLUTION NO. 1816

HON. RODNEY MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Amy Cotton of Judique, Inverness County, was named the IKON Female Athlete of the Year at the 2004 IKON Sport Awards; and

Whereas Amy is poised to embrace the pinnacle of her career, the opportunity to compete in the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Greece; and

Whereas all Nova Scotians and Canadians will be watching and cheering this judoka with pride;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Amy Cotton on her remarkable achievements to date and wish her the best of success in Athens.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Cole Harbour-Eastern Passage.

[Page 3838]

RESOLUTION NO. 1817

MR. KEVIN DEVEAUX: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Astral Drive Junior High School has a long tradition of excellence in athletics in both the Capital Region and at a provincial level; and

Whereas at this year's regional competition, the Astral Drive Junior High School Cheerleading team won first place in the Capital Region; and

Whereas the Astral Drive Cheerleading team was coached by Laura Conrad, Tara Jennings and Amy Ferguson;

Therefore be it resolved that this House congratulate the Astral Drive Junior High School Cheerleading team on winning the Capital Region championship and congratulate and recognize the support of the parents and the coaches: Laura Conrad, Tara Jennings and Amy Fergusson.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Cape Breton West.

RESOLUTION NO. 1818

MR. RUSSELL MACKINNON: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas in 2003 Premier John Hamm publicly indicated that power rates in Nova Scotia would increase by 29 per cent if issues of the Kyoto Protocol were to be adopted; and

[Page 3839]

Whereas today at the Legislature's Economic Development Committee meeting, officials from the Department of Energy advised that they were unable to confirm if the Premier's statement on power rates were correct because of insufficient information; and

Whereas this is the second time Department of Energy officials have appeared before this committee calling into question the validity of the Premier's statement on Nova Scotia's power rates;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House recognize the Premier's comments as being politically motivated and not based on the advice of experts within the provincial Public Service.

MR. SPEAKER: Was there a request for waiver?

MR. MACKINNON: I didn't ask for waiver.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley.

RESOLUTION NO. 1819

MR. BROOKE TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas until being put on the carpet by federal Opposition Leader Stephen Harper yesterday, Canada's Minister of Finance was refusing to say what he was doing with the forecasted $260 million a year in additional tax revenue from the gasoline pumps; and

Whereas out of the blue, this $260 million was suddenly directed to medical equipment purchases; and

Whereas on an annual basis, the federal government siphons off nearly $145 million via the 10 cents per litre federal fuel excise tax from Nova Scotia motorists and truckers;

Therefore be it resolved that the provincial Liberal caucus encourage their federal

cousins to cut the dastardly fuel tax and make it easier on the pocketbooks of Nova Scotian taxpayers.

[12:30 p.m.]

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 3840]

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

I hear a No.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Cole Harbour-Eastern Passage.

RESOLUTION NO. 1820

MR. KEVIN DEVEAUX: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas the Royal Antediluvian Order of the Buffalo was created in the 19th Century as a benevolent society in the United Kingdom to help the less fortunate; and

Whereas in 1954 residents in Eastern Passage and Cow Bay established the Royal Antediluvian Order of the Buffalo, Eastern Lodge 8686, affectionately known as the Buffalo Club, to provide services and supports for the residents of Eastern Passage and Cow Bay; and

Whereas the Eastern Lodge, with over 1,000 members, is one of the largest, if not the largest RAOB Club in the world, and over the past 50 years it has provided countless funds and services to the people of Eastern Passage and Cow Bay.

Therefore be it resolved that this House congratulate the Royal Antediluvian Order of the Buffalo, Eastern Lodge 8686, on its 50th Anniversary and thank the club for its tireless efforts on behalf of the residents of Eastern Passage and Cow Bay, and wish it many more years of the success.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

[Page 3841]

The honourable member for Halifax Clayton Park.

RESOLUTION NO. 1821

MS. DIANA WHALEN: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Maskwa Aquatic Club was established on Kearney Lake in Halifax in 1974 through the efforts of Alderman Alfie Hamshaw and others; and

Whereas of the past 30 years Maskwa has become a Summer tradition for members offering swimming and recreational and competitive paddling; and

Whereas Maskwa has prospered through the efforts of many volunteers and has trained athletes who have competed at the national and international level;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House offer warm congratulations to Co-President's Eleanor Power and Margot Schelew and to the members of Maskwa Aquatic Club on their 30th Anniversary.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Kings North.

RESOLUTION NO. 1822

MR. MARK PARENT: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year the Kentville and District Kinsmen Club celebrates 40 years of serving their community's greatest needs; and

[Page 3842]

Whereas the club is a supporter of the Landmark East School, the Canning and Kentville fire departments, and many other community organizations; and

Whereas the club membership has ensured that needy children in their community have had merry Christmases, raising almost $17,000 to purchase Christmas gifts for these children;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House recognize the 40th Anniversary of the Kentville and District Kinsmen Club and thank all the members of the club for the very important work they do in their community.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Halifax Atlantic.

RESOLUTION NO. 1823

MS. MICHELE RAYMOND: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Eva Mae Gray left Milford Station and came to Sambro as a teacher in 1960, and taught there until her retirement in 1999; and

Whereas after going to a dinner theatre five years ago, Eva Mae decided that she too could, and would, write and produce a musical play; and

Whereas every year since then, Eva Mae has indeed written and produced a dinner theatre production for the benefit of St. James United Church;

Therefore be it resolved that this House congratulate Eva Mae and all the people of Sambro who sang, danced, and served up lobster in the church basement for more than 400 people in the run of this year's production, Lights, Camera, Action.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 3843]

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Preston.

RESOLUTION NO. 1824

MR. KEITH COLWELL: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Dr. Joyce Ross, Executive Director of the East Preston Day Care Centre, will be retiring this September, after 34 years of dedicated service to the children of East Preston; and

Whereas Dr. Ross's commitment to the community of East Preston goes above and beyond her commitment to the daycare, her dedication has been recognized with an honorary PhD from Dalhousie University and she is the recipient of the Order of Canada;

Whereas society needs more Dr. Rosses in our world, for without her tremendous efforts the East Preston Day Care Centre would not be the building block of her community;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House acknowledge the formidable contributions Dr. Joyce Ross has made to her community and wish her a healthy and enjoyable and well-earned retirement.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

[Page 3844]

The honourable member for Guysborough-Sheet Harbour.

RESOLUTION NO. 1825

MR. RONALD CHISHOLM: Mr. Speaker, my resolution today is also seconded by the member for Antigonish.

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas the people who live in Copper Lake, Antigonish County have seen much change in their community over the years; and

Whereas Rose Sutherland Carter's book, Ripples from Copper Lake tells the story of this community and its people, from the times of the thriving copper mine to living through world wars and beyond; and

Whereas the 85-year-old's book not only captures the past of Copper Lake but also the present, and each family's genealogy is preserved in this book;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Ms. Rose Sutherland Carter on the publication of her wonderful book, Ripples from Copper Lake, and thank her for preserving the history of Copper Lake for future generations.

Mr. Speaker, I have a copy of Ms. Sutherland's book, which she has graciously signed and donated to the Legislative Library.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable Leader of the Official Opposition.

[Page 3845]

RESOLUTION NO. 1826

MR. DARRELL DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Nova Scotia is the home province of Canada's largest chartered bank, the Royal Bank, and another big five bank known around the world is the Bank of Nova Scotia; and

Whereas the federal Liberals are rushing to announce their good news but are delaying until after the election, their new bank merger guidelines which have already been drafted; and

Whereas those Liberal bank merger rules could very well endanger many Nova Scotia jobs through mergers like that which is now underway at Maritime Life;

Therefore be it resolved that this House urge the federal Liberals and other federal Parties to make clear campaign commitments to bank rules that ensure jobs in local branches and in regional centres like Nova Scotia, plus a wide range of options and easier access to bank financing throughout Canada.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

I hear a No.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Kings West.

RESOLUTION NO. 1827

MR. LEO GLAVINE: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas local amputee hockey player Justin Gauthier played for Team Canada in Prague in the Czech Republic at the World Championship; and

Whereas he played a key role for Canada leading to the gold medal game by scoring five goals, getting six assists and won MVP for the first game; and

[Page 3846]

Whereas Justin returned with the gold medal and two individual awards;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Justin Gauthier, and wish him the best of luck as he strives for a position on Canada's team at the 2006 Olympics in Italy.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Waverley-Fall River-Beaver Bank.

RESOLUTION NO. 1828

MR. GARY HINES: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas the Lockview High School Senior Concert Band of Fall River recently returned from a tour of heritage music festivals in New York; and

Whereas the band, under the direction of Joe Cormier, performed extraordinarily well, capturing one gold standard, along with two silver standards in three different musical instrumental classes; and

Whereas besides the Heritage Music Festivals, band members were also able to enjoy other school concerts, along with harbour cruises and a Broadway musical during their trip;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House of Assembly recognize the hard work put forth by band instructor, Joe Cormier and his students leading up to and while on their eight-day visit to New York in late April.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 3847]

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Hants East.

RESOLUTION NO. 1829

MR. JOHN MACDONELL: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas volunteers often spend many long hours on boards of directors, vitally necessary to the organization in question; and

Whereas the delivery of health care in this province is, by necessity and design, dependent on grassroots input; and

Whereas on Volunteer Awards Night, April 21, 2004, Ms. Sue McRuer was honoured by the Municipality of East Hants for her work with the district health authority;

Therefore be it resolved that this House of Assembly congratulate Sue McRuer for using her skills and time filling such an important position.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Richmond.

[Page 3848]

RESOLUTION NO. 1830

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas in the Spring of 1964, a group of women got together to form the St. Francis de Sales Catholic Women's League to serve the Lower River, Evanston and surrounding communities; and

Whereas the members of the St. Francis de Sales CWL have played an important role in religious education, parish fundraisers and supporting church activities; and

Whereas on Friday, June 11th, the St. Francis de Sales CWL will celebrate its 40th Anniversary with a mass and reception, bringing together past and current members;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House extend their congratulations and best wishes to the members of the St. Francis de Sales Catholic Women's League for their hard work and commitment to St. Francis de Sales Parish.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries.

RESOLUTION NO. 1831

HON. CHRISTOPHER D'ENTREMONT: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Father Leo Maillet celebrated his 50th Anniversary in the priesthood on May 5th; and

Whereas Father Maillet was ordained in his native parish of Saint Alphonse in 1954; and

[Page 3849]

Whereas Father Maillet has since served many parishes throughout Nova Scotia and is currently the chaplain at the Yarmouth Regional Hospital and serves the senior citizens who live at the Villa St. Joseph and Tidal View Manor;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Father Leo Maillet on his 50th Anniversary in the priesthood and thank him for so many years of service to the people of Nova Scotia.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Pictou West.

RESOLUTION NO. 1832

MR. CHARLES PARKER: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas repaving Route 4 at Mount Thom, Pictou County, has been identified as vital for kick-starting economic development by the Alma-Mount Thom Strategic Planning Committee; and

Whereas the Municipality of Pictou County sees repairing Route 4 as critical and essential for the success of this strategic plan; and

Whereas this Route 4 was last paved in 1959 and has been in very poor condition for many years;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Department of Transportation and Public Works immediately prioritize Route 4 at Mount Thom for repaving in 2004.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 3850]

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

I hear several Noes.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Digby-Annapolis.

RESOLUTION NO. 1833

MR. HAROLD THERIAULT: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Canada Customs and Revenue Agency coordinates and supports the Community Volunteer Income Tax Program; and

Whereas this necessary volunteer service provides assistance in tax preparation for seniors and persons who have modest incomes; and

Whereas for six consecutive years there has been a core of committed volunteers in Digby-Annapolis who willingly give untold hours to this program, completing hundreds of tax forms during the months of March and April;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House commend the efforts of Mr. Jim Wheelhouse, Mr. Ken Woodman, Mrs. Marie Carter, Mr. Robbie Robinson and Ms. Kristy Herron for their dedication to this worthwhile initiative.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Natural Resources.

[Page 3851]

RESOLUTION NO. 1834

HON. RICHARD HURLBURT: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas each year in March the Veteran Firefighters Association hosts a dinner for all veterans of the Yarmouth Fire Department; and

Whereas during the event a veteran is honoured and recognized for his long service to the department; and

Whereas this year's recipient was the late Deputy Chief Bob Nelson who was a 25-year member of the Hook & Ladder Company and who was very active in the planning and construction of the present fire hall;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House recognize the contributions of Mr. Bob Nelson to the Yarmouth Fire Department and to all the residents of Yarmouth.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Cape Breton Nova.

RESOLUTION NO. 1835

MR. GORDON GOSSE: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas on April 30, 2004, Duggah MacNeil received the Nova Scotia School Athletic Federation's Dr. Hugh A. Nobel Distinguished Service Award; and

Whereas Duggah MacNeil spent 26 of his 35 years teaching at Sydney Academy where he coached and managed the men's hockey team for 25 years during which time his club captured eight NSSAF championships, including an unprecedented seven consecutive

[Page 3852]

titles from 1974 to 1982, nine Cape Breton titles, eight Cape Breton metro tournament titles, and six Red Cup titles - a track record second to none; and

Whereas Mr. MacNeil has coached and taught members of this Legislative Assembly;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this Legislative Assembly congratulate Duggah MacNeil for his dedication and commitment to the Sydney Academy hockey team and establishing it as one of the premier high school hockey programs in the country.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Annapolis.

[12:45 p.m.]

RESOLUTION NO. 1836

MR. STEPHEN MCNEIL: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Joyce Grant-Smith is an author and Grade 6 teacher at the Annapolis Royal Regional Academy and has had many short stories published in numerous magazines; and

Whereas Joyce Grant-Smith launched her first published novel, The Latch, on Saturday May 15th which has won the 2003 Joyce Barkhouse Award for Writing for Children; and

Whereas The Latch is a story of a young girl who is introduced to an Acadian family from 1755 by accessing their past through the discovery of an original Acadian door latch;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House recognize Joyce Grant-Smith and wish her success with the launch of her new book.

[Page 3853]

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Justice.

RESOLUTION NO. 1837

HON. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Barbara Hilburt has been serving the community of New Germany and surrounding area as Public Health Nurse for the past 30 years; and

Whereas Ms. Hilburt played an integral role in delivering health care services in areas such as vaccination and prenatal care to the residents of New Germany and area; and

Whereas Ms. Barbara Hilburt is retiring on June 30, 2004 after many years of service to her local community;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House thank Public Health Nurse, Barbara Hilburt, for her dedication to the health and well-being of the residents of New Germany and surrounding community over the past 30 years.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

[Page 3854]

The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid.

RESOLUTION NO. 1838

MR. DAVID WILSON (Sackville-Cobequid): Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas the Royal Canadian Legions are the cornerstone of many communities of Nova Scotia because of the service they provide; and

Whereas in addition to providing support to our veterans and educating all Nova Scotians about the contribution and sacrifice made by our veterans, they also provide important youth programs and services for seniors, such as Meals on Wheels; and

Whereas 2004 marks the 25th Anniversary of the Royal Canadian Legion Calais Branch 162 in Lower Sackville where they have worked extremely hard providing these programs to the residents of their community;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 162 in Lower Sackville on their 25th Anniversary of providing support and services not only to our veterans but all Nova Scotians.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Preston.

RESOLUTION NO. 1839

MR. KEITH COLWELL: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

[Page 3855]

Whereas on September 4, 1974, the East Preston Day Care Centre opened its doors to care for 32 children with a staff of nine and presently cares for 112 children with a staff of 25; and

Whereas the East Preston Day Care has received national and international recognition for the outstanding work they do; and

Whereas for the past 30 years under the direction of Dr. Joyce Ross, the East Preston Day Care Centre has provided a solid foundation for many children, providing a safe and fun environment for those children to blossom;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House recognize the East Preston Day Care Centre and congratulate them on the 30 years of nurturing care of children from all communities.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Energy.

RESOLUTION NO. 1840

HON. CECIL CLARKE: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas students and teachers of St. Joseph's Elementary School, Sydney Mines, under the leadership of Principal Jim MacPherson, are working on an important lesson - peace; and

Whereas the school is focusing on various themes each month to impress upon its young students the importance of making their school environment a safe, tranquil place of learning; and

[Page 3856]

Whereas the principal says positive lessons learned on respect, self-esteem, bullying, diversity and friendship will not only emanate throughout the school, but also through their broader community;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House commend the efforts of staff and the students at St. Joseph's Elementary in making their school and community more tolerant, peaceful places.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Timberlea-Prospect.

RESOLUTION NO. 1841

MR. WILLIAM ESTABROOKS: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas thousands of Canadian soldiers, including W.I. (Bill) Estabrooks of New Brunswick's North Shore Regiment, landed on the beaches of Normandy 60 years ago on June 6, 1944; and

Whereas the Canadians advanced to capture the City of Caen and to liberate Holland; and

Whereas these veterans, their accomplishments and courage will be remembered on Sunday, June 6, 2004;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia House of Assembly recognize these veterans and encourage Nova Scotians to attend D-Day ceremonies on June 6th, Lest We Forget.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 3857]

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Richmond.

RESOLUTION NO. 1842

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas in 1984, John F. Samson, Brian Samson and Edgar Samson joined together to form Premium Seafoods in Arichat, a lobster-buying company which had annual sales of $66,000; and

Whereas with the passing of John F. Samson, Brian Samson and Edgar Samson went on to form the Premier Group, which includes companies purchasing and processing lobster, crab, along with fresh fish sales; and

Whereas this year marks the 20th Anniversary of the Premier Group, which now has over 200 employees and had annual sales of $35 million in 2003;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House extend their congratulations to Brian Samson and Edgar Samson of the Premium Group, along with their management and staff for growing the Premier Group of companies into a successful Isle Madame business, and wish them a successful future.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

[Page 3858]

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Timberlea-Prospect.

RESOLUTION NO. 1843

MR. WILLIAM ESTABROOKS: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas residents living on gravel subdivision streets in the growing provincial constituency of Timberlea-Prospect have petitioned the Halifax Regional Municipality and the provincial government for needed paving work; and

Whereas these citizens have been very patient throughout this process; and

Whereas the provincial Department of Transportation and Public Works must continue to provide cost-sharing funding for such projects;

Therefore be it resolved that the HRM and the provincial Transportation and Public Works Department identify the streets which will be paved in 2004.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Digby-Annapolis.

RESOLUTION NO. 1844

MR. HAROLD THERIAULT: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas more than 20 of the province's newest cooks, plumbers, welders and other newly-certified tradespeople were honoured at an apprenticeship event at the Digby Pines on Saturday, May 8th; and

Whereas the event recognizes tradespeople who recently completed a four-year, 8,000-hour apprenticeship training program in one of the 53 designated trades, including automotive servicing, carpentry, electrical, plumbing, cooking and welding; and

Whereas John Drish of Halifax received an award for excellence in coaching and mentoring;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate John Drish and other winners for a job well done and continued success.

[Page 3859]

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Halifax Citadel on an introduction.

MR. DANIEL GRAHAM: Mr. Speaker, it gives me great pleasure to introduce, in the west gallery, some special guests we have here. These are representatives of the Arts and Culture community here in Nova Scotia, who continue to express their concerns about some developments. I would ask, at the end of my introduction, that they please stand. Gay Hauser of Live Art Productions; Krista Welsh and Jason Parkhill of Opera Nova Scotia; Marie Koehler, video artist; Andrew Terris of ARTS NOVA, Cultural Research; Ian MacKinnon of Groundswell Productions; Zeth Levinson of Live Art Productions; Tim Gillespie, the former Chairman of the Nova Scotia Arts and Culture Partnership Council; and three budding artists whom we have with us - I hope I've caught everyone, perhaps most importantly three budding artists - Mairi MacKinnon, Aiden MacKinnon and Anya Friesen, who are here with their father, Ian MacKinnon. I would like them to be welcomed to the Chamber. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: We certainly welcome our special guests to the gallery today and hope they enjoy the proceedings.

The honourable Leader of the Liberal Party.

MR. WAYNE GAUDET: Mr. Speaker, could the government indicate if the Premier is going to be attending today's Question Period?

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I believe the Premier will be here. I can have somebody check on that, to find out when he will be here.

[Page 3860]

ORDERS OF THE DAY

ORAL QUESTIONS BY PUT MEMBERS

MR. SPEAKER: Question Period will begin at 12:55 p.m. and it will end at 1:55 p.m.

The honourable Leader of the Official Opposition.

SERV. N.S. & MUN. REL. - FAIR MARKETING PRACTICES:

ACTION - DETAILS

MR. DARRELL DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, one of the keys to low prices in a de-regulated market is a healthy independent retail market. The Retail Gasoline Dealers Association of Nova Scotia says that independent retailers are being squeezed out by unfair practices. They wrote this government on May 3rd, stressing that without government action there would be more closures, a decline in competition, a decline in service levels and further domination by the major oil companies. So my question to the Minister of Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations is, what has your government done to protect our independent market by ensuring fair marketing practices?

HON. BARRY BARNET: Mr. Speaker, I would say to the member opposite and to all Nova Scotians that we have tabled a piece of legislation before the House that will enable us to set regulations to ensure that Nova Scotians are treated fairly. As well, I would say that I personally met with the independent retailers association and a number of retailers in advance of that legislation.

MR. DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, if he has met with the Retail Gasoline Dealers Association and he has in his possession the letter, then he knows that they have said, and I will quote, and I will table the letter, "The unfair competition that comes directly from major oil company operated or controlled outlets throughout the province now makes it impossible for Nova Scotia's independent retailers to manage their gasoline margin requirements." Independent operators are good for the system. My question for the Minister of Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations is, what are you going to do today to protect independent operators in this province?

MR. BARNET: Mr. Speaker, as I indicated, we have legislation that is before this House but in addition to that, I have also taken the initiative to write to Minister Robillard, Industry Canada, to ensure her or to inform her that issues around competition fairness have been brought to my attention and I have asked her to direct her staff to investigate.

MR. DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, that is exactly the wrong direction. We know here that in Nova Scotia there were 900 stations in 1991, now there are roughly 500. When the NDP raised their concerns in 1997, then Minister Wayne Gaudet said that he was going to wait for

[Page 3861]

the federal-provincial Consumer Measures Committee. There is no record of any action by that committee. So my question is, why does the minister follow the failed Liberal example by coming up with excuses instead of taking specific steps to ensure a fair market for the independent stations who are particularly important to rural Nova Scotia.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. Just a reminder to all members not to use other members' names. Either refer to their portfolio or their constituency, please.

The honourable Minister of Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations. (Interruptions)

Order, please. (Interruptions) Order, please. (Interruptions) Order, please. We will revert to Oral Question Period. (Laughter)

The honourable Minister of Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations.

MR. BARNET: Mr. Speaker, now that they have their little tiff sorted out, maybe I can answer the question. As I indicated to the member opposite, the legislation that is before the House allows us to develop regulations that will in measures protect independent retailers. I recognize that a simple letter to the Minister of Industry Canada will not necessarily provide the level of protection that is necessary for Nova Scotians. That is why we brought forward this legislation, to protect Nova Scotians. That is what it is about.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Glace Bay.

HEALTH: INFO SYSTEM - DELAY EXPLAIN

MR. DAVID WILSON (Glace Bay): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Health. Yesterday the Deputy Minister of Health, in one of his final acts as head of that department, began the process of defending a report that has yet to be released. Nova Scotia was a province examined in this report, a report that is set to reveal that there were between 4,400 and 10,000 Canadians who died in health care facilities as a result of medical error. In the media this morning, the Deputy Minister of Health was reported as saying that the challenges are a "systems" problem. My question for the minister is, given that comment, could the minister please explain why the Nova Scotia Health Information System will be two years behind schedule once it's finally implemented?

[1:00 p.m.]

HON. ANGUS MACISAAC: Mr. Speaker, I can assure the honourable member and I can assure the House that when that system is implemented, it will go a long way to addressing the concerns that are being raised by this report. This government had the foresight to proceed with the implementation of that system and when it's up and running, we

[Page 3862]

will be in a position to respond to the concerns that are identified in the report, referenced by the honourable member.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Glace Bay): Mr. Speaker, as the deputy minister said yesterday, we may be on the leading edge of patient safety, but according to this government's timetable we are behind schedule. In April 2001, the government promised a $30 million, three-year, fully integrated health information system that will be . . .

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. There is a lot of distraction in the Chamber and I would ask the honourable members to either take their places or take their conversation outside, please. There are cameras underway here and it is interfering in that process.

The honourable member for Glace Bay on his question.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Glace Bay): Mr. Speaker, in April 1, 2001, the government promised a $30 million, three-year, fully integrated health information system that will be two years behind schedule when it's finally implemented and to date it's about $24 million over budget. It's a much-needed system that will save time, save money and, most importantly, has the potential to save lives, but something has gone wrong.

MR. SPEAKER: Question please.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Glace Bay): My question for the minister is, could the minister please explain why Nova Scotia health care professionals, indeed, all Nova Scotians, have seen very little benefit of a health information system despite a $24 million over-expenditure?

MR. MACISAAC: Mr. Speaker, the system that is referenced by the honourable member has been implemented in District 7. It is in the process of being almost fully implemented in District 8 and it is being spread throughout the rest of the province. When that system is up and running, we will have one of the most effective patient information systems in this country.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Glace Bay): Mr. Speaker, the Department of Health has spent, to date, the following amounts: in 2001-02 $5.4 million; $12.5 million in 2002-03; $19.1 million in 2003-04; and 2004-05 $17.1 million; $54.1 million. My final question for the minister is, this health information system will reduce wait times, avoid duplication of services and address the challenges faced with issues like drug interactions, so what assurances can the minister give today that this health information system will be ready to go, including the appropriate training for staff, according to his newly revised timeline for implementation?

[Page 3863]

MR. MACISAAC: Mr. Speaker, I can assure the honourable member and I can assure the House that this system as it is being implemented is proving to be extremely beneficial to all practitioners in health care, to patients and to everyone who needs the patient information that is being provided through this system. It is being spread throughout the province and we anticipate it to be up and running and to be one of the best systems in this country when it's finished.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid.

TCH - ARTS COUN.: DISMANTLING - EXPLAIN

MR. DAVID WILSON (Sackville-Cobequid): Mr. Speaker, my question through you is to the Minister of Tourism, Culture and Heritage. The minister likes to boast about the many way his department promotes culture. The only culture in evidence so far is the culture of fear and silence created when he terminated the arm's-length Arts Council and replaced it with tightly controlled body. So my question to the minister, what is your government so afraid of that it had to dismantle an arm's-length funding body for the arts in this province?

HON. RODNEY MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, it is obvious that the member wasn't here during that time, but I do thank him for his question. What I will say is that this government has put forward programs to support artists across this province and we will continue to support artists across this province.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Sackville-Cobequid): Mr. Speaker, many members of the arts community will say privately that they won't criticize the new council publicly because they're afraid of losing access to government funding for their projects. In short, they don't want to be on the minister's naughty list when it comes time for awarding these grants. They should be afraid because with no arm's-length peer review process for funding, the minister has free rein. My question to the minister is, will he commit that disbanding the Nova Scotia Arts Council was more than allowing political patronage than patronage of the arts?

MR. RODNEY MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, I would certainly challenge that member with respect to his indication that the peer assessment process is not in place because it is in place for those programs which were under the previous council.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Sackville-Cobequid): Mr. Speaker, but it appears that the minister and his staff pick more than the partnership does. The Arts and Culture Partnership Council does not allocate money or determine budgets. The minister even acted as their spokesperson for the group last week, yet again cutting off the board from direct contact with the cultural sector. My final question to the minister is, if he has nothing to hide, why not restore the arm's-length Nova Scotia Arts Council and let the arts community itself determine who is most worthy of receiving government support through a transparent, fair process?

[Page 3864]

MR. RODNEY MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, I can assure you, the member and all members that the peer review process is very much intact with respect to the programs which were under the previous council. I can also indicate that the individuals who are serving on the current council are very-respected members of our communities across our province. The evidence is clear, this government cares about culture and cares about the investments we're making in the arts and cultural community.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Annapolis.

TCH - ARTS COUN.: MEETINGS - DETAILS

MR. STEPHEN MCNEIL: Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Tourism, Culture and Heritage. Today the former head of the Nova Scotia arts commission, along with a number of his colleagues from across Nova Scotia, are in the gallery. Mr. Gillespie left his position with the arts commission because he says the minister and his department have stonewalled the commission's work. So my question for the minister is, will the minister tell this House how many times in the past year he met formally with the commission and does he feel that was adequate?

HON. RODNEY MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, the last time I met with the council was Friday of last week.

MR. MCNEIL: Mr. Speaker, when the Nova Scotia arts commission was established, it was designed as an independent organization which would advise the minister and his department on issues surrounding arts and culture in Nova Scotia. When the government is distributing money for arts and cultural events in Nova Scotia, the arts commission should have been involved in each and every one of the government's funding decisions. My question is, will the minister tell this House what level of input the arts commission had on funding decisions made by his department for the arts?

MR. RODNEY MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, I tabled in this House the other day the progress report with respect to the new Arts and Culture Partnership Council. In addition to that, we'll be continuing to move forward on a number of issues. Right now the Arts and Culture Partnership Council is reviewing the organization's program. I expect those recommendations to come forward in the month of June.

MR. MCNEIL: Mr. Speaker, out of frustration Mr. Gillespie has resigned from the commission and is now looking, with the help of others, to organize a separate group made up of people from the arts community to try to do what the arts commission could not - influence the government. My question is, will the minister not admit that scrapping the former Nova Scotia Arts Council was a mistake and that the new arts commission simply isn't working?

[Page 3865]

MR. RODNEY MACDONALD: I certainly disagree with the member's comments. I believe the new arts council is working. I thank Mr. Gillespie for the time which he served as Chairman and on the council, but the council is moving forward. As I mentioned, the council members are very well respected all across this province and we look forward to continue working with them.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the Official Opposition.

FIN. - GAS PRICES: TAX WINDFALL - USAGE

MR. DARRELL DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, my question will go to the minister responsible for skyrocketing gasoline prices.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. As I indicated last time, (Interruptions). Order, please, order, please or I'll bump someone. (Interruptions) Order, please. Members are wasting other members' time. If it continues, I'll be asking some members to leave the Assembly. The honourable Leader of the Official Opposition on his question.

MR. DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, thank you very much for pointing out that mistake - it's not skyrocketing gasoline prices, it's the Minister of Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations. The federal government announced yesterday that it will identify the additional HST revenue earned from record-high gasoline prices and it will dedicate that money to the purchase of medical equipment. The federal Finance Minister stated that at current prices the federal GST-HST windfall could be as much as $230 million this year, so Nova Scotia's windfalls in HST revenues from these outrageous gasoline prices are now going to be identified. My question for the minister is this, what is the government going to do with its tax windfall from the gasoline prices that are already reaching $1 a litre.

HON. BARRY BARNET: That would be a question that would be more appropriate for the Minister of Finance, Mr. Speaker.

HON. PETER CHRISTIE: Mr. Speaker, I did have the opportunity, as the honourable member, to see what the federal government was talking about yesterday. When we look at the increased cost of gasoline and the HST on it, it has been the experience in this province that expenditures are balanced out in one area against another. The pot doesn't increase that much. We have made our commitment to health care, that's what we'll be doing - it is what's in the budget.

MR. DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, the federal government has a different experience and they know that prices at the pumps are 10 cents higher than they were two weeks ago. On an annual basis that translates into provincial windfalls of more than $9 million and the province will also receive an unexpected increase in federal money for medical equipment, if yesterday's federal commitment is honoured - unlike of course the tax rollback that the

[Page 3866]

Liberals campaigned for and then voted against. The provincial windfall should be put in the hands of seniors and others on low and fixed incomes who need protection from high fuel costs. So my question is, why should this government keep its windfall from the misery created by these record-high prices?

MR. CHRISTIE: Mr. Speaker, the honourable member is right. The impact of high gas prices is affecting everybody and that's why the Minister of Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations brought in that plan that he did to assist Nova Scotians, but we will have to wait to see how this experience goes on before we can determine whether there's any additional revenue. I also say to the honourable member - he indicated that we'll be getting money for medical equipment - we'll have to wait until the cheque arrives.

MR. DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, elections, like minority legislative situations, give voters much greater and more immediate influence. The federal Liberals have rejected a two cent gasoline tax break, claiming that it is an ineffective response to the problem, in favour of a program for the windfall receipts. I'm looking for a commitment from this Progressive Conservative Government and ask them to also pay back their HST windfall, so perhaps if the Minister of Finance could tell Nova Scotians why are you so determined to hang on to the windfall, the tax take, from these record-high gasoline prices?

MR. CHRISTIE: Mr. Speaker, as I indicated to the honourable member, how that experience plays out over the next few months, we'll have to wait to see. But what I can say to that honourable member is what we are committed to doing is putting more money into health care, to promoting education and roads. That's what this government is about.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Cape Breton South.

ECON. DEV. - SYDNEY DAYCARE CTRS.:

SUMMER JOBS - FUNDING

MR. MANNING MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, my question today is to the Minister of Economic Development. This government is failing students who need Summer jobs, especially in areas of high unemployment. In 1999, the Provincial Employment Program for students, administered by the previous government, had a budget of $6 million and it employed 2,632 students. Last week a press release announced that the budget for the program this year is $1.6 million and only 600 students are being hired.

What the press release didn't say, Mr. Speaker, is that there are 2,000 fewer jobs available this year than in 1999; it also didn't say that it was too late for non-profit groups to apply for funding. Many of those who did apply, like daycare centres in Sydney, received nothing. My question to the minister is, why is this minister denying funding to daycare centres in Sydney that desperately need student help this summer?

[Page 3867]

HON. ERNEST FAGE: Mr. Speaker, what the honourable member also did not say was that there was a $600 million deficit created by the government that we had to deal with in 1999. That being said, this year's funding is the same as last year's funding.

[1:15 p.m.]

MR. MANNING MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, what the minister is doing here is blaming the students for his inability to come up with enough money in this province to provide adequate jobs for students this Summer. Since 1999, this government has continued to gut the Provincial Employment Program for students. Over $4 million was cut from that budget. This government has eliminated 2,000 Summer jobs since 1999, and most of those jobs were for areas outside of Halifax; 2,000 jobs eliminated. All of these jobs went to non-profit organizations. It's an absolute disgrace that this government could even contemplate cutting that number of jobs away from students this summer. My first supplementary to the minister is, why is the minister giving up on providing funding for university students and non-profit organizations like daycare centres?

MR. FAGE: Mr. Speaker, as I pointed out, the funding is identical to last year. The province, unlike the federal government with their program, does supply support to non-profit organizations. I would like to point out to the honourable member and the House, the highest record number of Nova Scotians ever are working in Nova Scotia, over 445,000. The private sector is certainly employing Summer students as well. This government has made that commitment, that through the private sector, job creation and the climate is there. The facts remain, we're supplying the same amount as last year.

MR. MANNING MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, in regard to his statement about jobs, in reality there are 6,000 fewer jobs in Nova Scotia today than there were in 1999. Also, what should be known to Nova Scotians is that there are 2,000 less student jobs this year than there were in 1999. That is a fact, no matter how much that minister wants to wax eloquent about it, that is the fact, there are 2,000 jobs less in Nova Scotia today than in 1999. I would ask the minister again, Mr. Minister, why are you trying to balance the budget on the backs of university students and students who need jobs and daycare centres this Summer in order for those daycare operations to carry on?

MR. FAGE: Mr. Speaker, again, the honourable member is waxing himself because this government has dealt with a deficit of $600 million that the previous government left. We've ensured that the student employment program has continued. It is the same amount of dollars as last year. The private sector is employing even more students than ever in the history of this province.

[Page 3868]

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the Official Opposition.

INS. - RATE INCREASES: PUBLICATION - TIME FRAME

MR. DARRELL DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, last week we asked the minister responsible for insurance why his government planned to hide insurance company rate filings from Nova Scotians. Yesterday, the minister said that Nova Scotians will have access to as much information on auto insurance rate filings as possible. That statement does not qualify as an answer. My question for the minister responsible is this, will the people who actually pay the rates know what rate increases companies are applying for before the board makes a decision?

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I wish I could answer that question, but in truth I can't. At the present time, however, I can assure the honourable member that the Insurance Review Board is holding public hearings. After they've completed the round of public hearings, they'll be coming forward with policy, with regard to how the hearings shall be conducted. At that time, the honourable member, as all Nova Scotians, will be aware of what the process will be.

MR. DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, insurance companies will be able to file for rate increases in just one month. Last Spring, there was a public outcry to news of dramatic rate increases that forced this government to act. Now, the minister should know that in New Brunswick, it's an insurance company that wants to keep the rate applications secret, and it's the review board that is trying to keep the information. So, my question is this, why is it so difficult for the minister's government to see that given the insurance history in this province, public disclosure is in everyone's best interest?

MR. RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, it must be a terrible disappointment for the New Democratic Party to be in this province noticing that we have an insurance system that is now the best in Canada with the lowest rates in Canada.

MR. DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, this is the same government (Interruptions)

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. The honourable Leader of the Official Opposition on your final supplementary.

MR. DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, I'm absolutely certain that the minister believes that and he's right in there with those people who believe that Elvis is still alive. This government does not have much time left to figure out what information will or will not be released to the public. At the very least, what was public before should be public now and that is the summary of proposed rate increases. So my question to the Minister responsible for the Insurance Act is, will you guarantee that at the very least the Insurance Review Board will release the actual rate increases that companies are applying for?

[Page 3869]

MR. RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I'm terribly sad for the honourable Leader of the Official Opposition, I really am. He obviously believes that Elvis is still wandering around. (Laughter) The best you could do is say well, he's Henny-Penny running around saying look, the sky is falling!

Mr. Speaker, I wonder if the honourable member would listen very carefully. We have the best insurance scheme in Canada. We have the lowest rates in Canada. Nova Scotians have $55 million in their pockets that they wouldn't have if that crowd was in power. (Interruptions)

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please.

The honourable member for Halifax Clayton Park.

GAMING AUTH. - ANL. REPORTS: LACK - EXPLAIN

MS. DIANA WHALEN: Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Finance. We saw last week at the Public Accounts Committee that there are a number of agencies that are directly responsible for gaming in Nova Scotia. The Alcohol and Gaming Authority under Section 56 of the Gaming Control Act is mandated to study the public interest and reaction as well as to study the social health and justice impacts of gaming on Nova Scotians. Since the Tories assumed power in 1999, their annual report has shrunk dramatically from 283 pages in 1998-99, along with a very large appendix that went with that, to a measly 42 pages in 2001-02. I can table these, since I have shown them. It's a dramatic difference in size of those reports.

The question - I am coming to it - is that even worse than that, there has been no report since 2001-02. My question for the minister is, why is the Alcohol and Gaming Authority ignoring its responsibility and not filing annual gaming reports as required by the Act?

HON. PETER CHRISTIE: Mr. Speaker, I will have to refer that to the minister in charge of the Alcohol and Gaming Authority.

HON. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker (Interruptions)

AN HON. MEMBER: Who's in charge over there?

MR. BAKER: Well, the honourable members will understand that I'm acting for the minister today and I'm sure that I will report the question to the minister and he will provide the honourable member with his answer.

[Page 3870]

MS. WHALEN: Mr. Speaker, there appears to be a little confusion about which minister has responsibility for the Alcohol and Gaming Authority and I think that points out the fact that it is very diffused at the moment. There are too many players. In the past, before being silenced, the Alcohol and Gaming Authority did provide an independent view of the negative impacts of gaming in Nova Scotia. My question to the minister - I guess the Justice Minister - would be, wouldn't it have been helpful to have the annual gaming report that details the extent of the negative consequences of gaming before doling out a $9,000 bonus to the head of the Gaming Corporation for reaching so-called responsible gaming targets?

MR. BAKER: I'm not sure if the honourable member's question was to me relative to the Gaming Corporation's CEO's salary or was to me as acting Minister of Environment and Labour. I will assume the question was related to the issue of the authority's question and not to the corporation, and the answer is quite simply that one of the things that we're most proud of was to eliminate a superfluous board that used to exist, that used to pay large amounts of salaries out to accomplish no useful purpose, and by divvying up those responsibilities between the civil service and the URB we accomplished a great deal of saving, and benefited the taxpayers.

MS. WHALEN: Mr. Speaker, the government is determined to bury its head in the sand with respect to the negative consequences of gaming. Regardless of which department is responsible for detailing it, there is a responsibility to provide the detail. My final question - to the same minister I would hope - given the Premier's stated concern for the harmful effects of gaming, has your government silenced the Alcohol and Gaming Authority because of the embarrassment that its reports could cause, or has the minister simply not been paying attention to filing requirements?

MR. BAKER: Mr. Speaker, I'm going to refer to the honourable Minister of Health Promotion, who can provide a more fulsome answer.

HON. RODNEY MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, I would just like to point out to the member and to other members that we will have a prevalent study coming out in a few weeks with respect to gaming in our province, and in addition to that we are working very closely with my colleague, the Minister of Finance, with respect to a responsible gaming strategy, following that, for the Province of Nova Scotia.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid.

COM. SERV. - WOOD ST. CTR.: CLIENT - CASE DETAILS

MR. DAVID WILSON (Sackville-Cobequid): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Community Services. I want to discuss a 14-year old whom we can't identify, but whose case the minister knows well. This youth has been bouncing from program to program for years; in fact he was the first client at the Wood Street Secure Treatment Centre, but was

[Page 3871]

released just after 30 days. After intervention a place was found in a group home, but he was moved because of violent behaviour. He left the YAC program and is now living on the streets. I ask the minister, how could he allow a 14-year-old to live on the streets while he is a ward under the minister's care?

HON. DAVID MORSE: Mr. Speaker, I acknowledge that the youth's name has not been mentioned here in the Legislature. I would specifically say that he was put into a program and he ran away from the program, but I am pleased to say that he is now back within the care of the department.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Sackville-Cobequid): Mr. Speaker, I have to say a program that he could voluntarily leave at that. Recently police picked him up, this 14-year-old, as he was under the influence of drugs and alcohol and a crack pipe was found in his pocket. We are talking about a 14-year-old who desperately needs help. So far this government and this system have failed him. A few minutes ago I just received word that he is in custody, living under the guard of a police officer in a motel, but the Wood Street Secure Treatment Centre in Truro is refusing to take him back, even though it appears to be the only safe option for this youth in our community.

Mr. Speaker, to the minister, this young man obviously needs intensive care in a secure environment, so why isn't he receiving it?

MR. MORSE: Mr. Speaker, I thank the member opposite for the question because the Wood Street secure care facility is a new facility. It's providing an opportunity to send Nova Scotian youths with emotional or behavioural problems there, but it is a secure care facility and as such they are only able to be kept there during five business days without getting a court order. In essence, they are in a secure treatment facility, meaning that they are not able to wander about, leave the centre, and the court system, the justice system takes a dim view of just arbitrarily doing away with youths' rights.

There is a dilemma here, but we are going to work with this youth and his family and we're doing the best we can to deal with a very challenging situation.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Sackville-Cobequid): Mr. Speaker, the minister just said Wood Street care facility, and from my recollection it was the Wood Street Secure Treatment Centre. I don't know if "care" and "treatment" are the same words, but I'm sure they're going to have to look at that.

Mr. Speaker, at last count the Wood Street centre had eight vacant beds. The family has been told that the staff at Wood Street centre can't handle this youth and that's why he won't be accepted there. I ask the minister, it seems pointless to build a secure care facility for youth if the staff are unable to handle behavioural problems, but this appears to be the case

[Page 3872]

with this young man. So given this reality, what will the minister do to address this urgent situation before it's too late?

[1:30 p.m.]

MR. MORSE: Mr. Speaker, this gives me a chance to elaborate further on the operation of the Wood Street Centre. The centre is a new program. We knew when we set it up that there were going to be adjustments getting the right mix of staff in place and the comfort levels, this is normal with any new program and as anticipated there have been challenges. We're dealing with them, we're overcoming them. It is a good program and we look forward to working with the staff there so that it can get up to its capacity of 20.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Cape Breton Nova.

HEALTH - OXYCONTIN PROBLEM: ACTION - IMMEDIACY

MR. GORDON GOSSE: Mr. Speaker, Cape Breton police attribute a growing number of deaths to OxyContin abuse and the number of prescription opiate addicts reporting to the detox unit has more than doubled in the past four years and yet the Minister of Health has been standing by while detox and rehab services have been closed or limited their services. Yesterday, John Malcom said the job of the community task force on prescription drug abuse is bigger than he expected, that while the group may release an initial report next month, meetings will likely be continuing into the Fall.

My question, Mr. Speaker, through you to the Minister of Health is, why won't he admit that more immediate action is required and that the province needs to take some action other than simply saying that OxyContin is a Cape Breton problem?

HON. ANGUS MACISAAC: Mr. Speaker, I can tell the honourable member and members of the House that we will work very closely with officials in the Cape Breton District Health Authority and all who have worked with them in the examination of this problem. Certainly, we're quite anxious to learn from their experiences in terms of whatever applications may be province-wide relative to this very serious problem.

MR. GOSSE: Mr. Speaker, between 2002-03 the number of OxyContin prescriptions dispensed in Cape Breton rose 270 per cent and it is expected to increase again this year. In a Maclean's article that I will table, John Stewart, the Executive Vice-President and General Manager of Purdue Pharma in Canada, the company that makes the drug acknowledges that OxyContin's widespread availability may have led to its abuse. I want to ask the Minister of Health if he has met with Purdue Pharma to talk about the problem and any possible solutions?

[Page 3873]

MR. MACISAAC: Mr. Speaker, I have not personally met with the firm, however, we note very carefully their involvement and the concerns that they have and their concerns are the same concerns that all of us have in ensuring that we are able to effectively deal with this problem and that is not something that we can snap our fingers at but it is something that we're committed to solving as we move forward.

MR. GOSSE: Mr. Speaker, I don't expect anybody to snap their fingers on a problem as serious as this. Newfoundland and New Brunswick are experiencing the same problem with OxyContin. Here in Nova Scotia it seems that the province's prescription monitoring program has dropped the ball. We've learned that the province was getting calls in 2001 to report suspicions that the drug was being abused. The drug was not flagged for special monitoring until this year. I would like to ask the Minister of Health, why his department did nothing about this for two years after they knew there were concerns of OxyContin abuse and why he is still standing by while lives are being destroyed in my community?

MR. MACISAAC: Mr. Speaker, it's far from accurate to suggest that we're standing by while this very serious problem is underway. We have worked with the district health authority, we have supported the district health authority in their efforts to involve the local community. We stand prepared to receive their report and to act upon the recommendations that come forward from that report. We recognize this as being a very serious problem, it's a problem that we want to find a solution to and we're determined to do that.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Preston.

WCB - UNFUNDED LIABILITY: CONTROL - DETAILS

MR. KEITH COLWELL: Mr. Speaker, my question is to the Minister responsible for Part II of the Workers' Compensation Act. In the Workers' Compensation Board Annual Report for 2003, the workers' compensation funding percentage has dropped from 73.2 per cent to 67.2 per cent - a 5 per cent drop as of the end of 2003. The unfunded liability is now a whopping $412 million. The minister is allowing the board to fund chronic pain through regulation and not a bill before this Legislature. My question to the minister is, what is the minster going to do to ensure that the unfunded liability does not overtake the ability of the board to provide money for claims?

HON. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker, as the honourable member is aware with respect to chronic pain, there's a decision of the Supreme Court of Canada that the government has an obligation to assist the Workers' Compensation Board in complying with. Obviously, that was going to have an effect on the unfunded liability of the board, but that is a reality in a democracy - we have to respect the rule of law.

[Page 3874]

MR. COLWELL: Mr. Speaker, I'm surprised at the minister's action and reply to the question, but I'm not surprised. Here it is 2003, the unfunded liability dropped 5 per cent. He talks about the unfunded liability that's going to be created by the Supreme Court ruling which is true, so it's going to grow worse. The minister only has two options left - he can either jack up the rates to businesses and cost them more money or he can add people to the system, in other words big banks or small operations with one or two people, which we hope never happens in Nova Scotia. But he must choose. Now the board is faced with an either/or position. I will ask the minister again, what is the board going to do, increase rates or extend payment schedules?

MR. BAKER: As the honourable member would be aware, in Nova Scotia we have an independent Workers' Compensation Board which is responsible for setting the rates for worker's compensation premiums in this province. Mr. Speaker, that board, composed of both labour and industry representatives, will set the rates. They're very aware of the unfunded liability and will be working towards reducing that unfunded liability.

MR. COLWELL: Mr. Speaker, again, I'm not surprised with the answer. Not too long ago the government stated that they would not increase the rates. They stated that. The minister now tells me that the board sets the rates - I do believe the board sets the rates so they have to make their mind up which they're going to do. The minister keeps avoiding the issue and hopes it will go away. It's not going away, there's either going to be major rate increases or there's going to be people added to the list, or people aren't going to get payments - that's what going to happen. My final supplementary is, will small business suffer and be faced with higher premiums because of the minister's inaction?

MR. BAKER: Mr. Speaker, I find it hard to answer the honourable member's question as it hopped around a bit. The short version of an answer to his question would be to simply point out to the honourable member that there has been a very negative equity market in Canada up until recently. That negative equity market has affected pension plans, the WCB investments (Interruption) And insurance, as the minister responsible points out to me. As that equity market improves, it will also assist the board in meeting the unfunded liability.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Dartmouth North.

HEALTH - SELF-MANAGED ATTENDANT CARE:

PILOT PROJ. - PERMANENCE IMPLEMENT

MR. JERRY PYE: Mr. Speaker, in spite of the many promises made by this government, self-managed attendant care remains out of the reach of the majority of disabled people in this province. In spite of a large body of evidence that proves self-managed care is most cost effective, more respectful of an individual's dignity and freedom, no action has been taken to make it a reality. In Ontario, Manitoba and other provinces client-managed attendant

[Page 3875]

care programs have been in place for a number of years. I ask the Minister of Health, when is your government going to finally turn the pilot projects into a full program in Nova Scotia?

HON. ANGUS MACISAAC: Mr. Speaker, we have a number of programs and a number of plans in the works that when funding becomes available, we will be able to move forward. Until the funding becomes available, it will be difficult and even though we have added an additional $230 million to health care this year, that only allows us to carry on in delivering the programs we currently have. We look forward to the day when additional funding will allow us to move forward with this program and many others.

MR. PYE: Mr. Speaker, I would say to the honourable minister that this is a matter of priorities, not a matter of resources. It's a matter of where the minister decides to put this on the ledger sheet of his department. This government is missing the point that self-managed attendant care will save them money. A study conducted into self-managed care showed that clients were happier and more independent. It also clearly showed that clients were healthier and needed fewer visits to doctors and emergency rooms, once again, to doctors and emergency rooms. I ask the minister, given the present pressures on home care, emergency rooms and family doctors, why is your government still delaying the implementation of the Self-managed Attendant Care Program?

MR. MACISAAC: Mr. Speaker, I can tell the honourable member, and tell the House, as the honourable member referenced in the preamble to his first question, we are making plans for being able to move forward with this program and many other programs and we see a host of those programs that if we had the resources, we could look forward in the longer term allowing us to reduce our costs. Until we get the funds to be able to do that, it's a challenge. The honourable member has not suggested which program within my department I should cut in order to implement this program. I would suggest that he should give thought to that.

MR. PYE: Mr. Speaker, I would remind the honourable minister, if I were in his department and had seen the ledger books, I would make the kind of decision that is necessary to bring in a Self-managed Attendant Care Program. The problem is that I don't have your books, Mr. Minister. (Interruptions)

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. The honourable member for Dartmouth North on his final supplementary.

MR. PYE: Mr. Speaker, the person with disabilities should not face the indignity of an endless stream of strangers attending to their personal needs, nor should they be trapped in their homes waiting for services at an unknown time. I ask the Minister of Health, self-managed attendant care is cost-effective, it saves the acute care system money, and it gives the client dignity and freedom. What is stopping you from finally putting this self-managed attendant care in place in this province?

[Page 3876]

MR. MACISAAC: The honourable member knows, and most Nova Scotians know, that the challenges of funding health care are very significant. Mr. Speaker, I can tell you, the honourable member, and all members of the House that the funding requirements for us to expand the capacity of health care are very significant and we are looking forward to opportunities to obtain those additional funds so that we can move forward with programs such as this and many others that we would like to move forward with.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Richmond.

ENERGY - DEP. MIN.: SEARCH - DETAILS

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: Mr. Speaker, my question was for the Premier, but I guess I will redirect it. The appointment of the first Deputy Minister of Energy following an extensive search of 160 candidates identified Dan McFadyen as the best of the overall candidates. The Premier boasted Mr. McFadyen's leadership would bring more jobs and benefits to the energy sector here in Nova Scotia. Mr. McFadyen is leaving with less than two years as deputy, following in the footsteps of Dr. Tom Ward, the former Deputy Minister of Health, and other senior civil servants in this province. In his place the Premier has appointed Alison Scott whom we all know has little to no experience in energy, whom we are told her top priority will be to cut red tape at the federal level although the government continues to cry that it can't do anything with the federal government.

Mr. Speaker, my question to the Minister of Energy is, can he indicate why his government did not undertake an extensive search for a qualified Deputy Minister of Energy for Nova Scotia?

HON. CECIL CLARKE: Mr. Speaker, as the honourable member knows, the appointment of deputy ministers is the prerogative of the Premier and I refer that to the Deputy Premier.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, the Premier of this province has made very wise choices in the past with respect to the selection of deputy ministers and I'm sure that the present appointment will follow that same tradition.

[1:45 p.m.]

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: Mr. Speaker, Nova Scotians are looking for a sign that this government takes our offshore seriously. Multinational companies and investors are watching what this province does. Dan McFadyen brought our province credibility. Today that credibility is gone, and our offshore in this province is stagnant. Nova Scotians know that the appointment of Alison Scott is simply a case of a Premier on his way out the door looking after his friends before he leaves. I ask the Acting Premier (Interruptions) what credibility or confidence can Nova Scotians or Energy officials have in this government when they appoint

[Page 3877]

one of their own political friends rather than seek out the best-qualified candidate for Deputy Minister of Energy?

MR. RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I certainly hope that the Premier's not going out the door, because that would be rather unfortunate at this stage of the game. The Premier has given his commitment, I believe, to remaining as Premier of this province, and I certainly hope that he does so. With respect to his choice of deputy ministers, I would suggest that that question will have to wait until such time as the Premier is in the House to answer that question, because I'm sure that honourable member knows full well that the appointment of deputy ministers is never delegated, it always remains with the Premier.

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: Mr. Speaker, clearly the Premier is not here for us to ask him to make those commitments . . .

MR. SPEAKER: Order. Order, please. Order, please. The honourable member knows full well he's not to acknowledge the presence or absence of a member of the House.

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: Mr. Speaker, I was simply following the answer given . . .

MR. SPEAKER: No, if you look at Hansard and you will see it was a different comment.

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: Mr. Speaker, gas prices are going through the roof in this province. Nova Scotians are looking for a qualified Deputy Minister of Energy to lead and grow our offshore industry and to bring stability to the energy sector here in this province. Instead the Premier has bypassed the competitive process by appointing an individual from their political backyard, who is clearly not qualified to handle such an important position for the future growth of this province. My question to the Acting Premier is, will he commit, on behalf of the government, to an open competition to find the best qualified Deputy Minister of Energy, or will he at least assure Nova Scotians that Alison Scott is not in a conflict of interest as the new Deputy Minister of Energy?

MR. RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I just got a note, actually, to advise me about the record of the past Liberal Government with respect to deputy ministers. However, I don't have to respond to them in that fashion, I simply have to say that Alison Scott has been connected with government, she was connected to the former Liberal Government, and she has provided tremendous service to the people of Nova Scotia, and I know that she will continue to do so as Deputy Minister of Energy.

[Page 3878]

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Pictou West.

TPW: ALMA-MT. THOM STRATEGIC PLANNING GROUP - ASSIST

MR. CHARLES PARKER: Mr. Speaker, my question, through you, is to the Minister of Transportation and Public Works. In Pictou County, as some of you may be aware, there's an active group of community and business people, aiming to stimulate economic development along the Alma-Mount Thom highway. The Alma-Mount Thom Strategic Planning Group, as they're called, has identified an upgrade and improvement to Route 4 as one of the keys to ensuring solid economic development prospects. I know this government agrees that roads are important to economic development, because in blue book one, they promised, "Work with communities to ensure highways and secondary roads are planned and designed to optimize economic growth as a priority." So my question to the minister is, Mr. Minister, will you work with this community group to improve Route 4 in Pictou County as a way to help stimulate economic development?

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, it's very clearly the policy of the Department of Transportation and Public Works to be an enabler, to enable businesses and communities to grow and to prosper, so certainly, any group that fosters a similar process, we'd be welcome to assist.

MR. PARKER: To the Minister of Natural Resources, another priority that has been identified by this strategic planning group is the revitalization of Salt Springs Provincial Park

Since 2002 this park has been reduced to a day-use park from one where overnight camping was available. This park requires an infrastructure investment for today's travelers and more considered efforts at promotion. Certainly that could act as a catalyst to help economic development in the area, get other businesses started. I would like to ask the Minister of Natural Resources, what commitment will you make today to work with this group and their local RDA to redevelop Salt Springs Provincial Park?

HON. RICHARD HURLBURT: Mr. Speaker, through you to the honourable member, I definitely will work your RDA and with the community and concerned citizens on any park in the Province of Nova Scotia, and if they want to meet with me my office is open and I'm available to meet with those people any time they want to meet.

MR. PARKER: Mr. Speaker, my final question is not to the Premier but to the Acting Premier then. As we've just heard, the formation of the Alma-Mount Thom Strategic Planning Group promises to be a good thing for our local economy. They are working hard to have Route 4 re-paved. They're working hard to see the Salt Springs Provincial Park revitalized, and these are key priorities, not just for this group, but for many residents in Pictou County. To the Acting Premier, what is your government prepared to do to stimulate economic development in the Alma-Mount Thom area?

[Page 3879]

MR. RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I would think that would be an Economic Development question so I'll refer it to the Minister of Economic Development.

HON. ERNEST FAGE: Mr. Speaker, I do welcome the question because the local RDA has been working hard with the citizens group and the business group in that area and I've personally met with several businesses from that particular area that have growth plans and opportunities to help the economic lifeline of that particular area in the future and we'll continue to work with them and support their efforts.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Victoria-The Lakes.

ENVIRON. & LBR. - ORANGEDALE:

WATER SUPPLY - ASSISTANCE DETAILS

MR. GERALD SAMPSON: Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of the Environment and Labour. Orangedale is located in Cape Breton, adjacent to Victoria-The Lakes and they have a serious drinking problem in their water supply. Over the past four months the boil order has been lifted for only two weeks - in four months. When the bacteria levels improve the water remains high in aluminum. The quality of water is unstable, safety levels are fluctuating and are always unpredictable.

Mr. Speaker, the water is actually unfit for drinking. My question to the Minister of Environment and Labour is, when or what kind of help can the community of Orangedale expect from this government?

HON. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker, I understand, in fact, that there are active meetings ongoing now to work on this difficult problem in order to find a solution that works for the community.

MR. GERALD SAMPSON: Mr. Speaker, the community has looked for better solutions with a little more than sympathy from the government. Quality levels of late have been consistant but are still unsuitable for human consumption. We all feel that everybody deserves clean drinking water. My question for the minister is, will he tell this House, why has the government turned a deaf ear and failed to come up with a plan to help the community of Orangedale?

MR. BAKER: Mr. Speaker, the honourable member would know from the earlier answer that the contrary is true. In fact, the government is working with the community in order to provide them with a solution that provides them with clean drinking water. I think it's important to point out to the honourable member that one of the reasons that we are able to detect the problems with the drinking water in that community is because this government implemented strict guidelines with respect to testing of water, to ensure that public drinking water is safe.

[Page 3880]

MR. SPEAKER: The member for Victoria-The Lakes, you have about 30 seconds.

MR. GERALD SAMPSON: Mr. Speaker, how long is the government going to work before they come up with a solution? The residents are traveling six kilometres to get safe drinking water, what they figure is safe, but it's from a spring that's untreated and bacteria levels are hopefully not too high. Can the minister tell this House, what has the government been doing while the residents of Orangedale have been travelling five to six kilometres out of their own community to get water?

MR. SPEAKER: The Acting Minister of the Environment and Labour unfortunately won't have time to answer it. The time allotted for the Oral Question Period has expired.

The honourable Leader of the Liberal Party on an introduction.

MR. WAYNE GAUDET: Mr. Speaker, to you and through you to all members of the

House, I would like to introduce a special guest in our west gallery this afternoon. Rick Fraughton is our newly-nominated Liberal candidate for Chester-St. Margaret's. I would ask Mr. Fraughton to rise and receive the warm welcome of the House. (Applause)

GOVERNMENT BUSINESS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call the order of business, Public Bills for Second Reading.

PUBLIC BILLS FOR SECOND READING

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 64.

Bill No. 64 - Capital Region Transportation Authority Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Sackville-Cobequid): Mr. Speaker, it's a pleasure, again, to stand and say a few words on Bill No. 64, Capital Region Transportation Authority Act. As I was saying yesterday in my comments, a lot of the residents in my community, and I'm sure residents throughout HRM . . .

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. Order, please.

[Page 3881]

The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid has the floor.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Sackville-Cobequid): Mr. Speaker, a lot of the members of my community and I would assume throughout HRM are wondering, once they heard this bill being proposed to create a new Transportation Authority, their concerns lie with what is this going to cost the government, what is this going to cost the province, and eventually what is it going to cost the people of HRM and the whole province? It's justified, because in this bill here, it's really limited on what we can read through, especially on their mandate, and they truly have concerns.

I have concerns, our caucus has concerns on this, and would like to see more information placed in this bill, on how the board is going to be selected or the directors of the authority, what their mandate is, what kind of teeth, if you want to call it, they will have when they try to implement changes to the transportation system throughout the central region here, HRM. The reason they have so many concerns is because of the high cost of fuel these days. Just the other day, when I put $25 in my vehicle, I noticed on the bill - it was through Ultramar, they actually break down the percentages - that over $9 of that was taxes, provincial and federal.

So when they hear that the government is going to open up or establish a new identity or group, or authority as in this case, they're wondering, is this something that we should be spending our money on, their hard-earned money, my hard-earned money also, and is it going to be something for the betterment of our area here, for the central region?

As I was saying yesterday, there's a lot of concern with the transportation throughout the city, what we have or what we don't have and the lack in some areas, where I think we really need to work on over the next few years. As we've seen over the last number of years, the out-migration of rural Nova Scotia and a lot of these residents who live in rural Nova Scotia are moving towards the central region here.

Our population has exploded, I would say, over the last 10 years, and it doesn't take you long to look, when you drive around the city, especially with my drive in, if I come through on the Bicentennial, the developments you see, especially the condominiums and the apartment complexes. There's hundreds, if not thousands, of them being built just in the last few years. As an emergency health care worker, I know that in responding, a big part of our job now is to find out where these new streets are, the new apartments, how to get into them, do they have available elevators and that aspect.

So our area here in the central region is really growing, and with new development down the road, or proposed development out near Kearney Lake, where they're looking at tens of thousands of homes being built and condominiums, in another 10 years HRM really is going have a large number of the population in this province. I believe we're pushing 400,000 now, I'm not too sure on that figure, but that's a large number of people living in

[Page 3882]

such an area, and they really rely on transportation a lot. As I was saying yesterday, some of the concerns are trying to get into the city for events such as sporting events. I'm not sure if you're aware, but if there is a hockey game going on at the Metro Centre, it's pretty apparent when you start your trek in, once you hit Magazine Hill, the number of people that come into the city for some of these events. It doesn't take long for congestion to build up, it doesn't take long for the entry points to the city to become clogged with traffic, and then to increase the problems, if there is an emergency or an accident, it really does hamper the transportation system in this area.

[2:00 p.m.]

As I was saying, growing up in Sackville, we commuted a lot into the city. As a student going to Saint Mary's, I didn't have the luxury of owning a car or actually couldn't afford the insurance back then - I surely would agree that I probably couldn't afford the insurance today if I was a young adult trying to go to university and pay for a vehicle - so I relied a lot on the transportation that was available to me at the time. Not that I'm that old but many years ago we didn't have some of the express routes that we have today, which make it a little quicker to get to the city from Sackville. We relied on some long routes and many stops and it would take at least an hour and a half, if not longer, for me to get from the bus terminal to near the vicinity of Saint Mary's.

We have seen some changes over the years, but I don't think we've seen the changes that can actually go along with the changes that we've seen in our population growth and the demand for appropriate transportation and really to intertwine or interlink the different modes of transportation - if it's upgrades to the roads, as we've seen years ago with the MicMac Rotary, which they've changed over the years, or the Armdale Rotary, which at times can be pretty congested. I think we really need to look at how we can intertwine the different ways of coming in here, through roads, through Metro Transit, the bus routes, through the ferries we see running across the harbour every day . . .

AN HON. MEMBER: The beautiful ferries.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Sackville-Cobequid): The beautiful ferries that link people from Dartmouth to Halifax, because the majority of the people, especially in my community - and I'm sure it's like this throughout HRM - work downtown. I've had the luxury of, for many years, just having to travel maybe a kilometre down the road to go to work, so I've even found it can be quite frustrating trying to get into the city, trying to get into the Legislature, especially during peak hours when the traffic flow is heavy.

I've seen in other cities - down in the States, in Montreal, Toronto for example, on a recent trip there - the ability to leave where you are, get on public transportation and really go anywhere, if you need to go to that play or that sporting event or a seminar or convention, they really make it easy and it's not a hassle like you have here in HRM. If you want to travel

[Page 3883]

from one end to the other, if I'm in Sackville and I want to go to Dartmouth or MicMac Mall, it's a challenge, you really have to know the routes, know where to get off, where to get a transfer, sometimes you take three buses.

AN HON. MEMBER: Route 66, the Crosstown.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Sackville-Cobequid): Route 66, the Crosstown. So they have improved some routes, but at times it still is quite difficult to get into the city.

I've heard a lot over the last little while, being the representative of my constituency of Sackville-Cobequid, about the possibility of maybe a faster commute into town. I know that the HRM have played with the idea of putting maybe another ferry, from the Arm or Bedford Basin, into downtown here, but they've also mentioned a fast commute by rail, a fast railway system, which I think we really need to take a serious look at, because if you look at the tracks out here that run right down the city, on both sides of the harbour, the Dartmouth side, or Halifax, they run right out of our city and really they're not used that much.

I know in my community that if they established a fast commute by train into the city, I think it would be quite popular. You wouldn't see the congestion you see downtown. The ability to get proper parking in the city is outrageous, especially if there is some kind of function going on. Halifax is becoming more popular for hosting large events - sporting events, cultural events - we're going to see the Tall Ships this year again and there's going to be tens, if not hundreds of thousands of people coming into our city. One of the things they're going to realize is our transportation mechanisms for this city really need to be upgraded.

I don't know if the Transportation Authority will have the mandate to change big issues like this because it's not in this bill. I know this is the start of it, but a lot of the concerns we have and the members have, are important. They're concerned with how much this is going to cost. People come up to me, being new to this profession, they're not always keen on when government decides that it's time to create a new department or an authority like this because they think it's just another waste of taxpayers' money, and what's in it for them?

With this bill the way it sits right now, I can't tell them a whole lot on what's going to change or what the mandate is, what they're going to be doing. I know I've heard in the media lately that there is some concerns with HRM, councillors and the mayor have expressed some concerns with this. I'm sure it's important to them because right now they are kind of the ones developing or helping with the transportation routes in the capital region. I'm wondering if they're sitting back thinking, is this going to come in, are they going to take over what they're doing?

[Page 3884]

The other issue would be the mandate of this authority. Is it going to be in place to take over Metro Transit? Are they going to take over the Bridge Commission? Are they going to take over the ferries? The workers, which there are hundreds and hundreds of workers that provide the service we have now and they do a great job with the resources they have, are concerned when they hear about legislation coming in that may change who they work for, may change how many people work for them. I know I would be concerned if I were a worker in the public transportation area about this bill and have concerns on will I have a job tomorrow? Will I have a job when this authority is up and running? Right now, as I said, I can't go back to them and express what's in the bill on the outcome or the look of what this authority is going to shape into because there's not a whole lot here.

What I want to comment a little bit on too is here under Clause 7(1), it says, "The Governor-in-Council may, after consultation with the Municipality, make regulations . . ." What I want to draw your attention to is the word, may. I'm not a lawyer and I don't want to be a lawyer, but I've been around negotiations and contracts and realize - no offense to the lawyers in the room - wording is a big issue. I've realized this in this job especially with some of the amendments we see on bills when it comes to, may, or shall. That word, may, right here - I'm sure HRM will look at this and say, they may consult us. Should it be, shall?

I'm not the expert. I'm sure the people in my caucus will really look over this and say, yeah, maybe it should be shall because that defines a definite conclusion on what the purpose of the council is. When you leave it up to words like may, you're always wondering what's going to happen. May can lead to many things and I've seen that over the years with contracts and negotiations and just in the last 9 or 10 months in this capacity how language is really important.

I think the big thing here in this bill is that there's not enough language here. We have two pages, one and one-quarter pages. I realize that you need to be very up front with the residents, the people of Nova Scotia, up front with other caucus members and other Parties about what your intentions are when you bring a bill forward. I'm learning this as a new member and the government should realize the importance of really putting everything in a bill so that you don't have complications, differences of opinion. I realize in this job that's a big thing that we do here, is have differences of opinion, but I think as elected officials we really need to make sure that our bills have a lot of information in them and the organization that you're trying to create, especially with this authority and especially a mandate.

I think the big question with our caucus, and with people I've talked to about this over the last couple of days, you know, is the unknown. We don't really know what's going to happen here other than, you know, there's the wording "may consult". So I'm sure the Mayor of HRM and the councillors will definitely be wondering what's going to happen with this bill or what's the next step. Is it going to get by to the Law Amendments Committee? Are we going to make amendments to this? Are you going to get support from us or are you going

[Page 3885]

to get support from the Liberal Party? Are you going to get support from your own caucus? So they do have concerns with what's not in here and so do I.

One of the big things that the residents have come to me with is the high price of gasoline and the taxes they pay on that. One of the things we've heard over the last little while, and especially out in my area, was this proposal for a private toll road from Burnside into Bedford. I remember some work being done in my community, the Glendale extension, they put in a new overpass over Highway No. 102 into Bedford, but I remember reading for years and years that this was going to happen and the purpose of it was a new linkage between Sackville and Bedford and into the Burnside Industrial Park. I can remember thinking, okay, this is going to be great, it will be another avenue out of our community, because it does get congested.

I don't know if the members are aware of the growth of our community throughout not only my riding, because the population base in my riding has shrunk quite a bit - but a lot of Sackville is growing on the outside, a lot of development over the last 10, 15, 20 years, a lot of development since I moved to the community in 1970, when my parents moved out there. I remember we were the first house on the street, it was a gravel road and just trees. Now if you go up there, it's one of the older parts of Sackville.

So when I heard years ago that there was a new way of getting out of Sackville, I thought, this is going to be great. We'll have a quick access to Burnside. You'll end up right on - I think Burnside Drive, by Leon's there, was the proposed linkage. I remember the day they opened it, they had some controversy over the name of the section of the road where the Glendale extension went out. They had another name - I won't get into that, but on the other end it's called Duke Street, I believe, and the minister from Bedford, Duke Street comes up, but I believe it was supposed to continue on and, to my surprise, when it opened, I thought, great, I want to drive this new route. I went up and here I am on Rocky Lake Road and that was it.

I didn't realize, maybe I wasn't in tune with government and what their proposal was at the time, but a lot of people in my community were surprised when it didn't continue on to Burnside. It just ended in Bedford - not that Bedford is not a great place to go and end up in, but a lot of people had the assumption that it was to continue on to Burnside. So when this idea of a toll road came about not too long ago by a member of the government caucus, I was a little bit surprised.

There are people in my community who do support it, but there's a lot of them who don't because they realized many years ago that there was a need for another connection from Burnside into our area - Bedford, Waverley, Fall River, Sackville - and it was a priority then. They had plans for it. There are plans out there if they dust them off that will show the connection and I'm a little bit frustrated with why if in the past there was a need for it, and our community has grown and Fall River and Waverley have grown and there's definitely a

[Page 3886]

need for another exit out of the city and through Burnside, that why isn't it a priority now? Why are we seeking a private company to go in and build this road and put a toll on it?

I'm still getting phone calls and e-mails about it and I have to say a lot of them are negative towards a toll highway, just because everything in the province, our bridges and the Cobequid Pass, starts with a toll - I know that we heard this number - about 25 cents to use, and there are people who said, yes, I'll pay 25 cents, but is it going to stop at 25 cents? People believe that it could eventually be $1, it could be $2, it could be $3, who knows. The main thing is that at one point the government had seen that there was a need for this road there, and somehow, in the years of cutting funding to transportation, especially, to health care and to other areas, education, they said this was a good spot for us to save some money, and we'll cut that linkage out there.

[2:15 p.m.]

That's where I think we really need to look. If it was a priority at one point, why isn't it a priority now? The Minister of Transportation and Public Works stated that he's not in favour of toll roads, but he's not going to put a roadblock up in front of anybody else, if they want to look at it. There was talk about the Bridge Commission taking on the toll for this. I kind of find it strange or ironic that the minister stated that the government of today is not looking at toll highways, yet they're bringing in legislation, Transportation Authority legislation for the Capital Region, that could, potentially, take over the transportation for the area, which would mean, maybe, they'll take over the toll highway - I don't know.

There's a lot of unanswered questions. What frustrates me and frustrates a lot of people in my area is this high price we pay for fuel. Yes, we can't control that, but on top of the high price of fuel and the world price of crude oil along comes the taxation that we see in our province from the federal government, from the provincial government. People are frustrated that now, with the increase of gas and fuel costs, of course the government is taking in more money. There's no question.

What's the solution? I don't know, totally, what the solution is around that, but I know that we really have to look at what the people are spending out there, and the extra money we're taking in, every day now, with the higher prices and God only knows how high they're going to be this Summer. We should be taking that money and putting it right back into the roads. Put a highway out to Sackville or Bedford or Fall River, put that road back on the priority list and start paving some of the roads that really need it throughout our communities and the province.

I think that's where people are concerned, how we spend our money. Everybody here is aware of what the media says about government when it comes to increased fuel prices and the taxes we take on. They really know that it's a boost for the government. It's more money in their pockets, and I have to agree with them. But we really have to look at, now, especially

[Page 3887]

with the prices we see, that we have to be responsible with that money. If it's a rebate back to the drivers, I don't know - that's why the government was elected, that's why they have Cabinet, that's why they have deputy ministers and bureaucrats, to look out and see what the solution is.

It's on every news channel now, not only through our province, throughout Canada, and you just have to look at some of the U.S. states. I remember going to New Hampshire 10 years ago, paying 98 cents a gallon, and I think it's up to over $2 now. They're looking at ways of changing or helping their communities in the U.S. and other provinces. I think we really need to look at this. We should cap our windfall when taxes go up and put that money away. We shouldn't be spending that money. We should automatically say, we have a budget now, this is what we think we're going to bring in, at the start of the year, and we cap it at that, and any extra revenue goes into a fund that we cannot spend, we cannot cut from, and put it into transportation.

Do we need this authority created to do this? Maybe we don't need this. Maybe we should just infuse more money into HRM, help them with their ability or their ways of trying to create better transportation systems throughout HRM and throughout the Capital Region. I know this bill really is bias with region because it's just the Capital Region. I don't for a minute say that we should take all the extra taxes and fuel and revenue from fuel taxes and put it towards just the Capital Region. I have done some travelling in this province, I've heard a lot from travellers from outside of our province, outside of the country, as Tourism Critic, and the e-mails are unbelievable, saying this is a great trip, we had a wonderful time, your province is beautiful, we loved Cape Breton, we loved Yarmouth, Liscombe Lodge, they mentioned, but the underlying thing on all these e-mails and all the correspondence is the conditions of our roads.

They are horrendous when you get outside the city here. I realize that some of the members in rural Nova Scotia, this is a big topic, a big issue for them during elections and campaigns. I must admit being inside HRM it's not such a big issue for me because HRM takes care of the roads in my community other than the 100-Series Highways that surround my community. At one point they weren't twinned but now Highway No. 101 has been twinned quite a far distance, up past the Mount Uniacke-St. Croix area.

I remember years ago starting in the paramedic business, going out that stretch from the Beaver Bank Road to Windsor, countless times, Mr. Speaker, and going to countless fatalities on that road, and I just covered a small portion of that highway. I know my colleagues from the Valley would stand here today and recount how many accidents they've seen, how many fatalities. Twinning the highway does make a difference I can tell you. I've gone on a few calls over the last few years out there, most of them aren't fatalities. They have the room for error, as I call it, room for them to accommodate mistakes that drivers make, because all accidents are preventable - just don't get in your car and drive, you can prevent an accident.

[Page 3888]

When you have the area like the twinned highways, you do have the ability to overcompensate and have the room to overcompensate if that's the problem in the start of your accident. I must admit it does reduce the number of deaths. I've seen less fatal accidents on Highway No. 101. I must admit that we need to continue to upgrade our roads and spend the money on the roads and transportation modes.

Like I was saying yesterday, our population out in Sackville has really risen over the last 10 to 15 years, and the majority of them do try to travel into the city. If we can keep their commute to the city less congested or have an easier way for them to come into the city and exit the city, I think we'd live in a better place. You wouldn't see the congestion you see down here in Halifax at times.

I don't know, Mr. Speaker, if you're aware of the price of parking in the city these days, it's outrageous. I don't know how some people do it, and they're forced to take public transportation. I think as government, it's our duty to ensure that they have proper means of getting into the city and quick means. People just want to come to work, make their money so they can pay most of it on taxes and high fuel costs and rent, and get home to their family. I know the importance of spending time with your family, especially in this profession, too. You really need to make an effort at that. I think that's all that Nova Scotians want, is the ability to spend time with their families. I think that's why we're here, that's why we're elected, is to hopefully allow them to live a better life, to be with their families and not spend so much time on the Magazine Hill in your car, because it can be quite tiring at times.

The other thing I wanted to mention too, is the high cost or the potential cost of creating this authority. I know that there's no figures in the bill now, but we really have to look at is this something we want to spend our money on? Or like I say, should we really invest in the modes of transportation throughout our city and throughout our province for that matter? I don't like singling out one area even though I do live in this area, I do represent an area covered by this bill. It's very important for people in the smaller communities, especially a little further out, in Truro, in the Windsor area. A lot of these people travel to the city to work. I'm amazed at how far people go to make a living and how far they have to travel. So if we can be an avenue to assist them to get in here quicker and travel a little better, I think that's our main goal here.

In my community, we have several drop-off points, or bus terminals that are put up throughout the community. They have a parking pool there - one is right across from my constituency office, that's well used. I think if we can help them facilitate their transportation into the city over the next several years and make it a little easier on them, I think that would go a long way in the eyes of many of our residents and many of the people who vote for us.

HRM is a large area. Yes, there's a city core and there seem to be pockets where the majority of the people live, but we do have areas like out in Ecum Secum and they really need some help with transportation modes into the city. That's part of our capital region. We have

[Page 3889]

to be fair to everybody in it. We go from there to Hubbards or Tantallon and it's actually a large area to cover. It's amazing how those people out in those areas depend more on their automobiles, which increases the money they take out of their pocket every month because they have to pay the high fuel costs, they have to pay for the high insurance costs, they have to pay for the high cost of parking in the city. They spend a big chunk of their monthly income on transportation.

I'm sure those people are going to be sitting by patiently waiting to see what comes out of this bill and what this authority will entail and what their mandate is and to see if they will help the people in areas like Ecum Secum, Tantallon, and Hubbards. They've come to me and said that it's good to see that we want to form this Transportation Authority, but they do have questions about it. The same as our caucus, we have questions about it.

With that, I look forward to hearing some more from my constituents, hearing from councillors in the city here, from the mayor, from other members of my caucus to see what kinds of changes we can do to hopefully improve the lives of the people we serve and the people who elect us. With that, thank you, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Cape Breton West.

MR. RUSSELL MACKINNON: Mr. Speaker, I rise to make a number of interventions on Bill No. 64, An Act to Establish a Transportation Authority for the Capital Region. There are a number of varied and complex issues that are associated with this particular piece of legislation, I do believe.

As we all know, this is an initiative that was generated and highlighted in the Speech from the Throne just after the last provincial election. It was a commitment by the government that a Capital Transportation Authority would be established. To the extent of deliberations and discussions that took place between the province and the municipality, I cannot fully ascertain or comment on because that detail has not been provided. I do understand that there has been considerable discussion over the last, perhaps, three to four years within HRM on the idea and the principle of a Capital Transportation Authority.

Obviously, there has been some meeting of the minds and general consensus that this legislation will be good for the residents of the Halifax Regional Municipality as well as for the people of Nova Scotia because there are a number of factors: number one is with regard to finance; number two, planning and policy; and number three, the economic and social factors that come as a result of implementing such a piece of legislation. From an overview perspective, I believe it's fair and reasonable to suggest that this particular piece of legislation which is generally, I would submit, an umbrella piece of legislation, will provide a framework which will be good for all stakeholders.

[Page 3890]

Having said that, I believe it's incumbent on the minister who introduced this particular piece of legislation and, indeed, HRM officials, to provide substantially more detail for members of this Legislature to determine whether, in fact, this legislation is good or is not good. Is it a revenue-neutral piece of legislation? Is that what it will lead to? We do not know. How will it impact on the projected population growth for the next 20 years?

[2:30 p.m.]

We know that the Greater Halifax Partnership has laid out some rather interesting figures, Mr. Speaker, suggesting considerable growth within the Halifax Regional Municipality over the next 20 years and I believe, and I'm simply going by memory, it could be upwards of 60,000 to 70,000 additional residents. That in itself would be cause for considerable planning adjustment and, at this point, I think it's fair to recognize and compliment the Halifax Regional Municipality for looking at this issue in the long term rather than just the short term. I know it has created some anomalies and some frustrations in certain segments in certain communities of the Halifax Regional Municipality, but given the tremendous growth that has taken place in this new regional municipality in the last few years, I think it's fair to say that some measures did have to be taken.

For example, Mr. Speaker, the population statistics according to the Department of Finance here in Nova Scotia indicate that the population of the Halifax Regional Municipality as of 2003 was 377,932, compared to 1996, when it was 351,675, so we see a 25,000 increase in population in just seven years. So that would seem to fit pretty much in line with some of the other projections that are put out there.

Mr. Speaker, Halifax Regional Municipality is one of four municipalities in the entire province that has seen a growth. The other three municipalities interestingly are in very close proximity to the Halifax Regional Municipality. For example, Lunenburg, Hants and Colchester are the other three municipalities which have experienced growth. The other 14 municipalities in the Province of Nova Scotia have seen a decline in their population. So what does the Capital Transportation Authority legislation do? What does it speak to and what's hoped to be achieved?

Mr. Speaker, is this another initiative that will reaffirm the policy that is in place today, the general policy of depopulating rural Nova Scotia? It's hard to say and I don't say that as a negative to speak on the bill itself, but as one of a series of pieces of legislation that have come before this House since 1993, it builds on the factor that HRM is going to be faced with some rather difficult decisions on planning, particularly on the issue of transportation whether it be automobile, whether it be in trucking, whether it be in shipping, whether it be in rail, whether it be the ferry service, the busing service, or what have you, and I will give you some examples. The projection is that the container terminal service here, the container service in Halifax, will increase by 50 per cent over the next 20 years.

[Page 3891]

Mr. Speaker, I understand there's an introduction.

MR. SPEAKER: Would the honourable member allow for an introduction? Thank you.

The honourable Minister of Tourism, Culture and Heritage.

HON. RODNEY MACDONALD: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker, and thank you to the member for giving up some time.

Mr. Speaker, I would direct you to the east gallery and joining us here today for the proceedings, first of all, from the beautiful Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley riding, is the wife of our colleague here in the House, Norma Taylor, and joining Norma is her sister, Glenda Dean, from Meaghers Grant. I would ask them to rise and receive the warm welcome of the House. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: Indeed, a special welcome to members of the families in the gallery.

The honourable member for Cape Breton West has the floor.

MR. MACKINNON: Mr. Speaker, a member in the Chamber has asked, where did I get the figure of 50 per cent, that is a projection that was put forth by a body that did a study on the northeastern transportation corridor, as a result of the free trade route that was signed on by Mexico, the United States and Canada. That particular study - it's referred to as the Connecticut Corridor study - was published, I believe it was three years ago, maybe four years ago. The present Minister of Transportation and Public Works does have a copy of that, I provided that to him at the time.

These discussions come out of this particular conference that took place down in Providence, Rhode Island several years ago. There was considerable consternation by some of the New England States, particularly Massachusetts, New York, that the free trade corridor was going to create some difficulty for the New England States because the free trade corridor, coming from Mexico, comes up through the central United States, through Chicago, to central Canada, up through Windsor, Toronto, down through Montreal, and then, of course, the main entrance point to Europe is Halifax.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. Would the honourable member yield some time for an introduction?

MR. MACKINNON: Yes.

[Page 3892]

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Waverley-Fall River-Beaver Bank.

MR. GARY HINES: Mr. Speaker, I would like to draw your attention to the gallery opposite, to a gentleman who's no stranger to politics in this area and who served many years as a councillor in the Municipality of Halifax, as well as in HRM, Mr. Clint Schofield. Welcome. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Cape Breton West.

MR. MACKINNON: Mr. Speaker, I, too, welcome Mr. Schofield. I think it's important that we have the full attention of all stakeholders on this particular issue. It's a very important issue that we have before the House. I want to go back to this issue with regard to the container service here in Halifax. As you may recall, during the time of the minority Liberal Government in 1998-99, there was a representation made, an all-Party representation, or the Leaders of the three Parties made representation, with regard to trying to see Halifax as a post-Panamax centre for transport of goods and services along the Eastern Seaboard and to Europe and the like.

That was at a very important period of time, because it was a defining moment, although the Untied States federal government had deeper pockets than the Province of Nova Scotia, and perhaps the Government of Canada, for that matter, it was very difficult. So we lost out on that particular bid for some additional expansion and service. But to go back to the point I was making about the free trade corridor and the impact it has on Halifax as a capital city and an entrance point for shipping to Europe, Mr. Speaker, I think we have to be very cognizant that in the New England States, particularly in the Massachusetts and New York areas, they're generally considered to be landlocked, they're almost at the overload point right now. They need kind of a pressure valve release to be able to fit into this free trade corridor.

Whether their primary motivation in securing the support of the Atlantic representatives at that particular conference three years ago for an alternate free trade corridor to the one that's now in existence was to try to secure some of that projected growth for the Halifax region or not, I can't be sure but I have to say that I'm pleased we were able to hold firm on that particular position. It's not an issue that I'm sure a lot of members of this Legislature are familiar with, but it has a tremendous amount of impact for the people of Nova Scotia and, in particular, for the capital region here and the impact it will have on the transportation corridor in downtown Halifax.

For example, right now we're looking at somewhere in the vicinity of 500,000 container terminals coming through the port annually. Do an unscientific study - go out on Highway No. 102 between Halifax and Truro and, on average, in a 24-hour period, one tractor-trailer with a container will pass a particular point at any point in time; if you average it out, it averages one container per minute in a 24-hour period will pass on that highway.

[Page 3893]

Multiply that by the number of days that they function and you will come up pretty close, not quite to the 500,000, but you'll come pretty close.

So, if you increase that by 50 per cent, what's going to happen to the downtown transportation corridor in Halifax? Obviously, that pressure cannot be sustained on Water Street or Hollis Street or what other routes they use. I presume they're the two main corridor access points. Something has to be done to alleviate that pressure. Will this particular piece of legislation provide a framework to allow the municipal government to achieve that goal? What is going to be the relationship between this authority and the municipal government? That has not been put on the table, Mr. Speaker. That will have implications, tax measures, it will have implications on the traffic flow patterns, the projections of the additional traffic in and about the city that was put forth by the Greater Halifax Partnership. These are major issues that seem to be coming upon us, and we have to know if we give our approbation to this particular piece of legislation then, in fact, it will provide a framework to address that.

The minister, the mayor and officials met on Friday past for approximately 45 minutes. They had deliberations as to what the concerns of the Halifax Regional Municipality were, but we don't know what they are. We're now in a position where the government is asking members of this Legislature to approve something without giving us the details. I don't think that's appropriate. I think the minister himself would readily agree that that's not the way to go.

I made reference before about the impact this legislation building on the population trends to one region of the province versus the other. You have four counties that have seen considerably healthy growth. We've had 14 with a reduction in growth. Earlier today, I raised concerns at the Economic Development Committee meeting, the issue of the Rural Electrification Act. There is another piece of legislation in and unto itself would not be a major contributing factor for the reduction of population in rural Nova Scotia, but coupled with the exchange of services legislation that was adopted in 1995, if you look at the seven or eight key principles that were laid out for the basis of that legislation, one of them, Mr. Speaker, I believe it's item number seven.

[2:45 p.m.]

It's a document I believe you tabled at an Economic Development Committee meeting when the Cape Breton Regional Municipality officials attended several months ago. That item indicated that the purpose for the legislation was to reduce the need for providing services in the unserviced sections of the province, reducing the desire to, well, I'm trying to go almost verbatim on this, but essentially this particular point is a very defining issue in this legislation, the premise for this legislation, and that is to reduce any need for further development in rural Nova Scotia.

[Page 3894]

Mr. Speaker, that was a defining moment in what has transpired over the last 10 year. That is a very, very important document and I have not heard anyone speak to this issue since that period of time. Now, if you take that document, you take the Rural Electrification Act, you take the lack of an economic development strategy for rural Nova Scotia which we have put forth, and it's a good document and I think all members would agree, unless something is done to address that growing imbalance, pressures will continue to impact on the Halifax Regional Municipality. It's good that they have the ability to cope with many of the things that are coming at them. They saw, in their wisdom, that it was important to put the brakes on and develop a long-term strategy because this is going to get much worse I would submit, because, for example, in the Cape Breton Regional Municipality, that population has declined by 11,000 since 1996.

Mr. Speaker, I believe the first reversing trend for the Cape Breton Regional Municipality, when it was under the name of the eight former municipal units, it was approximately 1978-79 when the population factor started to shift. That's when it peaked and then slowly, slowly, until just recently with the closure of the coal mines and Sydney Steel, we saw a substantial dip. Much argument could be made over the fact that, you know, Cape Breton Regional Municipality, or the economy of Cape Breton, was sustained on a subsidy basis for about 30 years and rather than retool and readjust and refocus to be able to move in time in much the same way as other areas of the province, that we missed that opportunity. Maybe we did, maybe we didn't. The difference is Cape Breton was an industrial economy and that was the backbone of Nova Scotia's economy for quite some time.

If you go back approximately I would say 75 years ago, Mr. Speaker, three-quarters of the tax revenue from the province was generated from the resources that came from the Island of Cape Breton. Now, it's amazing how that has shifted so dramatically. So that's another issue that one has to be cognizant of. Now, looking at another aspect of the transportation corridor, or transportation issues that will be addressed hopefully through this particular piece of legislation, is that with regard to the transit system, the Metro Transit system.

Mr. Speaker, just recently there was a Metro Transit strategy, at least I have the draft copy that was provided from the library, and this particular transit strategy was to look into the future, apparently of five-year intervals, particularly for the next five years. There were four key points. One was that for the ridership, it would increase the annual hours up from 480,000 up to 610,000, increase ridership from 12.7 million to 14 million users a year. That's a substantial increase.

Mr. Speaker, as well, increase riders per capita from 40 to 50, and increase peak market shares from 6 per cent to 8 per cent. Further, on this particular issue with just a transit system, there was an implementation strategy that's been proposed, and that is for the following years: fiscal year for 2002-03, that's gone; but for 2003-04, the new crosstown route and core route restructuring would be undertaken; and for the upcoming fiscal year, a

[Page 3895]

new rapid bus service would come on stream; into 2005-06 and beyond, further improvements to meet demand growth.

The question is, Mr. Speaker, how will they achieve that? The representative from the NDP caucus, the member for Dartmouth North, who spoke yesterday, indicated that he was opposed to toll highways and toll bridges. He went on to say that public hearings and public consultation should take place and if the people wanted it, that would be fine, he would support that. To me, there's a bit of a compromise in his logic. Either he has a particular philosophy or an approach to this particular issue or he doesn't.

He went on to suggest when I questioned him on this particular issue, because this authority which he also suggested should be independent of the provincial government, independent of the municipal government, how is it going to fund itself? Would it be a case of both levels of government just putting money into this authority without any sense of accountability or say as to how this money would be directed? He came back and he indicated, well, no, it's just from an administrative point of view that they should have this type of independence. That only adds more confusion to the issue as to really where he wants to go with this particular issue. I would hope that maybe on a future day the NDP caucus would be willing to give some clarification on that, and I think that's only fair. They've indicated that they're against toll highways, but indicated on the other hand that perhaps if enough people were to go to a public meeting and suggest that they want it, that they would support it.

Mr. Speaker, the issue of toll highways. This particular piece of legislation and there have been some musings out front in the media going back more than a month, almost two months now. It was interesting the way this whole issue got out into the public eye, on this one particular piece, corridor access over Magazine Hill. It's almost as if there's a bit of cat-and-mouse game going on here between the Minister of Transportation and Public Works and certain officials with the Halifax Regional Municipality. They're testing the water to see how people would react. The minister obviously would like this issue turned over to the Halifax Regional Municipality because certain benefits would be derived by the Province of Nova Scotia, but we really don't know what they are yet. There's going to be some cherry picking here and we have to be very cognizant that the taxpayers of the Halifax Regional Municipality are not disadvantaged, because of some backroom deal. That seems to be what's happening here.

It's fine and dandy that we hold up the legislation so the mayor and senior officials can come to Province House, but we're not allowed to know what's said, we're not allowed to know what's discussed, even though we're expected to vote on a piece of legislation that will have far-reaching implications for the taxpayers of the Halifax Regional Municipality, possibly for the adjoining municipalities, and indeed for the other 14 municipalities because, ultimately, the bottom line will be if it helps the Halifax Regional Municipality, and that's good, anything that would advantage and promote growth, economic, socially, structurally - I think we have

[Page 3896]

to support that, but we have to be fair to all stakeholders to make sure, for example, in Pictou County, how is that going to impact on transfers?

We have other pieces of legislation before the House now, for example, amendments to the Assessment Act, we have the piece of legislation with regard to providing some property tax relief to Imperial Esso - and I'm really getting a little concerned and the points have been well spoken to by the member for Halifax Chebucto at the Law Amendments Committee yesterday, that this piecemeal approach is not helping the matter much. I do believe that the minister has to provide substantially more detail before this bill goes too far, from one corridor to the next.

AN HON. MEMBER: Are you trying to push it out there?

MR. MACKINNON: No, I'm not trying to push it out there, I'm trying to hold it here until the minister will provide some substantive detail as to what he's trying to achieve.

It's a very permissive piece of legislation, Mr. Speaker. The point has been made, Clause 7(1) "The Governor in Council may, after consultation with the Municipality, make regulations." Well the minister knows full well the bill is of no value unless you have regulations. The regulations are the working component of the bill, unless he's just going to approve it and then throw up his hands and leave it there. The political optics will be they brought in this new Capital Transportation Authority, they fulfilled their commitment made in the Speech from the Throne, and everything is wonderful - pie in the sky.

AN HON. MEMBER: It's a framework.

MR. MACKINNON: It's a framework, okay. Now if we're going to build something, we would like to know what kind of material we're going to put in there. Are we going to use wood, are we going to use concrete, are we going to use asbestos, or what's he going to put into this framework? He's not telling us anything, other than the fact that he's prepared to proceed because he had a closed-door meeting with the mayor and senior officials. We, as legislators, are supposed to take at face value what the minister says about what takes place in a closed-door meeting that he's refusing to tell us. What's the composition of the board? He still hasn't even answered that from Question Period.

Mr. Speaker, I've touched on just two aspects so far, the container service and the projections because of the free trade corridor, how that will impact on HRM, and the issue of their five-year plan on the Metro Transit Service. Now, what about other aspects? What about the ferry service, is that going to be in there as well? Obviously, I believe if you listened to the presentation that was made by Mr. McLellan from HRM, certainly you would have to concur that it is. It's on the table, it's in the mix, because his vision was for an expansion of that type of service.

[Page 3897]

Now, what about the Bridge Commission? We know, Mr. Speaker - and I don't want to delve too deeply into the annals of history - but the Minister of Transportation and Public Works knows full well, until 1993, that Bridge Commission was on the verge of bankruptcy. That Bridge Commission was in trouble, it was in so much trouble that the chair of the Bridge Commission, when he came in for a presentation, he didn't even know what room to go to, he didn't even know that we were having hearings on it, if my memory serves me correctly. The debt that was held by foreign currency market holders put us in a very vulnerable state, and the minister himself would have to agree that the Minister of Finance of the day, the honourable Bill Gillis, was the one who took the bull by the horns and reversed that trend of the way things were being mismanaged and a lot of it was because of patronage. It was patronage politics.

Now, I have to give full credit and compliment the Bridge Commission on the leadership role that they've played in recent years. They've really done a tremendous job, particularly with that latest extension on the ramp, the approaches I suppose for lack of a better word, and the way they've managed to work on paying down their debt and the way they've managed the entire package within their domain. So this is another issue that the minister really hasn't given us some detail. So there are three factors so far. We've got the container issue. We've got the ferry service, the bus service. We've got the Bridge Commission. What else?

Now, what about this exchange of services package and the provincial government's commitment to HRM on the upgrade of J-class roads, of serviced areas within HRM, and indeed in the non-serviced areas? Considerable concern again was expressed, Mr. Speaker, in writing by HRM to the Minister of Transportation and Public Works, little more than a year ago, that they were prepared to pull out of this service agreement simply because the provincial government wasn't living up to its obligation. Is this another factor that's on the table and what are the cost implications? How will it impact on the minister's budget? I think that's a fair question.

Mr. Speaker, what about the issue of the adjoining municipalities? How will they be affected? Will they see an unexpected surge in development because of this freeze that's in place for some time? We don't know. We're expecting a considerable increase in traffic from outside HRM, particularly from those four adjoining municipalities because if they're growing, considerable pressure will be put on the infrastructure because of these commuters who work inside HRM on a daily basis, this will have a major impact on the infrastructure.

I believe, Mr. Speaker, the minister owes it to all members of the Legislature to give us an overview of really what this whole infrastructure issue is all about. One thing, and the point has been made, with regard to the size of the Halifax Regional Municipality, as I understand, it's approximately 5,577 square kilometres, which is about 2,224 square miles, and the comparative analysis was done to other jurisdictions and so on, but it has approximately 200 communities within its boundaries and it's unquestionably the single

[Page 3898]

largest diverse municipal unit in the Province of Nova Scotia with 40 per cent of the population.

Now, Mr. Speaker, I understand that there's over 180,000 people who work in HRM daily. You can go out onto Highway No. 101, you can go out on Highway No. 102, or you can go down to the Valley connector coming in, on Highway No. 107, and it's just amazing the number of individuals who commute back and forth. What is the government's long-term strategy with this particular piece of legislation? That's what we have not been able to ascertain. Is it because the government is feeling pressures because one thing we do know for certain, Mr. Speaker, the debt is growing in this province. It is growing at an uncontrollable rate.

It's not a glamorous topic every day when you're getting up and you're just trying to balance your own budget, you're trying to buy groceries, you're trying to get your light bill paid and your mortgage payments and your car bill and your gas and so on. You're so focussed on trying to survive and look after your family and do all the things that you do on a daily routine, you leave this to government. But, here in government, one thing we know for certain is that debt is growing at an uncontrollable rate. What are the implications of this particular piece of legislation? Is that going to free up more money for the government to continue to make increased payments on the debt? We don't know. We have no idea.

The issue of fuel prices just in the last few weeks, the government's response to date, I do not believe has been adequate. It's been anything but adequate. To come up with a policy that you're going to provide 48 hours notice to the people of Nova Scotia if the price of fuel goes up so that they can plan. What kind of logic is that? That you could actually plan your budget in 48 hours? The price of gasoline is going up two days hence so you've lots of time to plan your budget. With all due respect, that's a hare-brained scheme of an initiative. To think, at the highest level of public policy in the Province of Nova Scotia that's what we're advocating for the people of Nova Scotia. I think we have problems. That government has problems. There's a void in long-term strategy and planning somewhere.

Maybe that's why all the deputy ministers are pulling up stakes and leaving. Maybe it's become so political within the hierarchy of the Progressive Conservative Government that we're losing policy makers. These policy makers are advisors that we need, to be able to advise government. I know we have Voluntary Planning and we have all these different bodies that can give advice and so on, but as I recall at one time there was always a connection between the deputy ministers. They would meet on a regular basis, and maybe they still do, but it doesn't seem that way, to develop a strategic plan as to where they wanted to go, not only in government but for the Province of Nova Scotia and for its people, not only on an annual basis, but 5 and 10 and 20 years down the road.

[Page 3899]

We don't seem to have that anymore. What's wrong? It's become ad hoc political survival and I think that's why we're seeing all these pieces of fragmented legislation coming before the House. What's happening here - and to a certain extent maybe that's why the minister is holding back on the details for this particular piece of legislation because this is much the same as what happened from my experience between 1988-93. The Premier of the day, he would cut a deal with just about anyone that walked through the door if it made them happy. But he didn't look at the long-term implications of how the debt was growing, how it would adversely affect another party - and I don't mean political Party, I mean another interested stakeholder.

We seem to have come full circle. Some people would argue that minority governments are good, some people would argue minority governments are not good. I suppose I would agree with some people.

AN HON. MEMBER: On what side?

MR. MACKINNON: It was a saying that a member had in this House on a previous day. He said, some of my friends support this legislation and some of my friends don't support this legislation and I support my friends. So, we're on safe grounds, aren't we? That seems to be just about what this government is trying to pull off. They're trying to be all things to all people, but strictly just for political gain, it's not for good planning, it's not for good public policy. I've never seen such a fragmented approach to the issue of the assessment problems in this province where the government would like to cut a deal with Imperial Oil. The government would like to satisfy three specific stakeholders in the Province of Nova Scotia that are experiencing some difficulties on the issue of assessment - Lunenburg, Queens and Victoria. What are the implications for the other 15 counties in this province?

We're hearing some echos from the Tory backbenchers over there but we know, Mr. Speaker, they're not allowed to stand up. They're not allowed to stand up for their constituents. They're not allowed to say anything about this legislation that would adversely affect their constituents. We haven't heard one whisper, not a whisper, from that crowed over there. We thought the greeter from Wal-Mart was tough, but watch this lot over here, they're very entertaining by their silence. When they do speak, they speak about issues, really, that in many respects, are secondary to some of the more pressing matters that are before this House, and that's very disappointing.

I would invite the member for Colchester North, I would invite the member for the beautiful Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley to stand on their feet and say exactly where they stand on this legislation? How is it going to impact on their constituents. They haven't said that. Why not? Surely to Heavens the Minister of Transportation and Public Works would grant a little bit of latitude, allow them to say something before the House closes.

[Page 3900]

Mr. Speaker, I'm getting worried, unless they find some way of getting their (Interruption) not going there, it's too easy. We need more input into issues such as this particular piece of legislation. That's really what I'm trying to say. I know I'm putting a little bit of flair to the dynamics of inviting these members to get up and speak on this particular legislation. This legislation has a tremendous impact, and the member for Colchester North knows his area is one of the counties that has a growth factor, and it will have an impact. He hasn't said one word about the impact of the freeze of development in HRM on his constituency, in his county. Why not? Why isn't he standing up for his constituents? Why isn't he saying something about this Capital Region Transportation Authority? I'm sure that honourable member, if he was on this side of the Legislature, would be saying why are those Liberals having secret meetings down in the Uniacke Room with HRM officials. Why aren't they telling us what's going on? Now he's over there and he's not allowed to say anything. I mean really, what do you call that? Some words you can use, some words you can't use. So I'll leave it to your imagination.

What about the member sitting next to him, which constituency? Waverley-Fall River-Beaver Bank. I do apologize. They've been changing the names so often over there. This member, when he was on the Halifax Regional Municipality Council, was a great champion; he was a great champion for his constituents out there, but I'm not hearing that anymore. They want to know why he's in favour of toll highways? So in a way that goes back to the issue I'm talking about, the cat and mouse. They're using the Halifax Regional Municipality officials to kind of put up the trial balloon, and then he's doing a little testing on his own to see what kind of feedback he's getting from his people. Obviously, it hasn't been positive, because we haven't heard him say one word.

This bill encompasses all of his constituency, and he hasn't told other members of the Legislature, particularly those from outside HRM, what the impact will be and how's it going to impact? What are the dynamics of it? This is very imbalanced, to say the least. They're asking us to approve something, but won't tell us what it is. Maybe he doesn't know. Maybe he's embarrassed. Maybe that's what it is. Maybe that's why he doesn't want to speak on it. Maybe he's not allowed to speak on it. (Interruption) Yes, the Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries says it's speculation. That's all we're left to do here, Mr. Speaker, is speculate, because they won't tell us. They're not open and accountable like they said they were going to be in their infamous Tory blue book. Yes, way down at the bottom of the heap. I know we're not allowed to flash these around, and I wouldn't flash that around either. I'd be embarrassed.

[3:15 p.m.]

Mr. Speaker, where is this open and accountable government? Where is this strong leadership with a clear course? Well, clear looks more like cloudy over there right now. So I don't know, they shouldn't hold their chests too brave. These MLAs in the Tory caucus that represent the Halifax Regional Municipality are saying nothing; they're saying absolutely

[Page 3901]

nothing. So why should we be resigned to the fact that we accept a piece of legislation with no detail - it's permissive, no assurance that we'll know what's in it, no assurance as to the composition of the board, no assurance as to quality control, where the money is going to come from, how it's going to be funded, or how it's going to be administered.

We can go on and on and on, Mr. Speaker, and I would be very surprised if this legislation would see its final approbation before this House rises in the Spring. I would be very surprised because . . .

AN HON. MEMBER: I would have to agree with you, I think.

MR. MACKINNON: Well, I seem to have some concurrence on that. It will certainly allow the socialists a little more time to develop a clear policy instead of saying that they're against toll highways, but then stand up and say well, if enough people come to a public meeting, they'll support it. That's essentially the thrust, and he says that it should be autonomous and so on, but he hasn't laid out, like they did on the public auto insurance, they wouldn't give us details, so how can I say I'm going to support something unless they give us the details? So it's the same with that, he said, it should be independent of the two levels of government, but he's saying only administratively.

Well, where's the money going to come from? He said he's against toll highways. Does he expect the provincial and municipal governments to give them the money and not have any accountability? Do you think the auditors would accept that? I don't think so. I don't think that's good management, and it's not wise for us as public policy makers to take that approach. The honourable member for Dartmouth North says that would be political meddling. Well, by golly, where are we? We're in the business of politics. Did that man just wake up and realize that now? This is the business of public policy and we are politicians and this is the political arena, you know. Why is this a new-found revelation for the member for Dartmouth North? We have to accept that responsibility, otherwise why are they bringing this bill before the House? Don't bring it to us, bring it to whoever he thinks should be approving it.

We have a legal obligation, Mr. Speaker, to the taxpayers of Nova Scotia. But I will give the honourable member for Dartmouth North credit for one thing - at least he stood up and said something on the issue. He stood up, unlike the members from the government caucus - there are at least four members over there for the Halifax Regional Municipality and they haven't said one word. They haven't said yes, they haven't said no, they haven't said they like the bill, they haven't said they don't like the bill. Why would they? They probably know as much as we know because it's all "closed door" at this point.

AN HON. MEMBER: He believes in the old way. Oh, does he ever believe in the old way.

[Page 3902]

MR. MACKINNON: Well, Mr. Speaker, well, well, well, well - this is getting easier by the minute. The member for Dartmouth North says I believe in the old style of politics. Well, I can tell you one thing, I believe in standing up for what I think is right. I'm not afraid to kind of slide out the back door on critical mass issues, like I've seen on previous days with the member for Dartmouth North - and I hope he'll be here to voice his opinion on the Capital Transportation Authority. (Interruptions)

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please.

MR. JERRY PYE: Mr. Speaker, I'm wondering if the honourable member would entertain a question?

MR. MACKINNON: Yes, Mr. Speaker.

MR. PYE: I would like to ask the honourable member for Cape Breton West when he can identify that the honourable member for Dartmouth North ever left the Chamber without responding to an issue in this Legislative Assembly?

MR. MACKINNON: Yes, Mr. Speaker, in the last session, not this session, the previous session, and I will undertake to provide the details of that. The exact issue I cannot recall, but I will undertake to provide that to the honourable member, in detail. (Interruptions) I guess he believes absence makes the mind grow fonder. That's not my philosophy.

The more important thing we're debating here today, Mr. Speaker, is the issue of the Capital Region Transportation Authority.

AN HON. MEMBER: And the issue of accountability.

MR. MACKINNON: Yes, the issue of accountability, and the lack of detail that's being provided. We don't even know what this authority will be called, at the end of the day. If you look at the legislation, it says it may be cited, so they may change it. They may call it, whatever. I do believe, Mr. Speaker, that the Minister of Transportation and Public Works should provide considerably more detail on the implications of this. What are the implications, particularly for the taxpayers of the Halifax Regional Municipality?

Will they be assured a more efficient, a more effective transportation system than they have now? I believe the system that they have is very good, from all accounts. I don't have all the detail but, from what I've been able to witness, they run a very efficient operation, particularly Metro Transit. Are they without difficulty? No. They're like any other authority in other jurisdictions. Could this be a model for other jurisdictions? Perhaps. I know in rural Nova Scotia the transportation problems are much different.

[Page 3903]

Will this, at the end of the day, allow the government to free up some additional dollars to be able to address some of the inequities and the poor road conditions throughout rural Nova Scotia? Mr. Speaker, the minister has indicated quite clearly that the roads in Nova Scotia are better today than they were when they came to power in 1999. Well - he says, absolutely, I'm glad you would agree with that - well, I'm not agreeing with it, unfortunately, and there's evidence to support my position over the minister's position. That is the number of claims for damages to vehicles has doubled since this government came to power. They've doubled.

I think they would be even higher, Mr. Speaker, if it wasn't for the fact that so many Nova Scotian motorists have been advised, when they go to call the Department of Transportation and Public Works to file a claim, they said, oh well, you're the only one who has ever called, or this just happened so we can't do anything about it. So they get discouraged. I do believe that that would be a much higher number if, in fact, the motorists who are adversely affected would indeed know that it's certainly within their right to do so.

Now, interestingly enough, what the government has also done, Mr. Speaker, is they've reduced the payout for the claims from individual Nova Scotians. On average, up until 1999, the average payout was somewhere around 37 per cent; 36 per cent or 37 per cent of all claims were paid out, because there's a question of due diligence and there's a question of, well, was it really unavoidable, did the department not have sufficient time or notice to be able to go and correct the problem before motorists kept using it. If I'm a motorist and I'm driving down a particular road and there's a large pothole that's having an adverse effect on traffic safety and I don't report it and somebody else comes along a week later - is it fair to go after the Department of Transportation and say that it's all their fault? We all have a responsibility.

Interestingly enough, only 6 per cent of all claims that were filed since this government came to power were paid. What the minister and his department are saying, 94 per cent of all claims that go before the department are not justified. The member for Kings North said, good minister. Good minister. He actually supports the treatment of Nova Scotia motorists (Interruption)

Well, Mr. Speaker, I'm not going to be sidetracked by the ramblings of the ineffective, inefficient member for Kings North, in my view. Because, he'll talk about any superfluous issue that one could think of except for some of the matters that sometimes have to be debated here in this House.

I've made some of the points and I will be coming back to speak to this issue on a future day and I thank you.

[Page 3904]

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Dartmouth East.

MS. JOAN MASSEY: Mr. Speaker, today I'd like to perhaps bring up a few issues and speak about a few of the topics surrounding Bill No. 64, Capital Region Transportation Authority Act. Some of the issues I hope to have time to speak about are the capital Transportation Authority Board, the toll road, the issue of ferries, the Shearwater extension and the interim growth management plan and then a few other topics that I might have time to talk about.

The Capital Transportation Authority Board, which did come before the Human Resources Committee and made a presentation which was quite in-depth - I may talk about that a little later on. I guess when I heard their presentation that day, I was just as shocked as the mayor was in hearing that the province would not have a say in who was going to sit on that board. This is a concern to me as far as how we are consulting in this province with other stakeholders in this huge issue of transportation within HRM and in fact, the whole province.

According to the mayor, and I think many people may hold this belief, this legislation is contrary to the discussions that took place and the intent of these discussions. Apparently, at no time in the discussions in the previous year did the province say that the city would not be in control of this board. The day that they made the presentations - and I wish I had my binder with me and all my notes, I do have some here today - the HRM wanted to have the board comprised of, I believe and I may be wrong, 11 directors, three councillors, three citizens, three city staffers and two members appointed by the province.

So, as far as I could see, that gave them some input into what the outcomes would be. I know the city that day talked about their hopes to overhaul the transit system. I believe they were hoping to acquire control of the Halifax Harbour bridges, that they'd also like to control the roads, the parking, the buses, the ferries and the rail system. I would have to say, I guess if you're going to be in control of something, you have to be in control of all the components that operate under that authority. However, it's my understanding now that the province is seeking a more co-operative approach with the Halifax Regional Municipality. When somebody talks to me about co-operating, I would think the co-operation needs to start sometime in the past. So if there was a whole year of discussions going on, I really question why all of a sudden, this shift of power if you want to call it power. Why HRM thought it was one thing and then they're being told, and it seems to me it was shortly after that presentation that then they were told, sorry, we want to have a coordinated approach. It sounds to me like maybe we want to be in control, that's a softer word to use. There are questions now about the mandate that the authority would have and what that would look like and what kind of stakeholders they would have on the board.

[Page 3905]

[3:30 p.m.]

This is always an issue with this province as far as consultation and you don't just see it here with the transportation issue. It's with everything that happens in the province. It seems like the province talks about we're going to consult with you on this or that, it's in the green plan, we're going to consult, but it's not really done. I don't believe that the consulting is done to the point in which it should be. I just feel this perhaps is another example of how HRM was going down one road thinking this is the way the province was going to allow them to go and put all this time and effort into, for example, putting together the presentation and coming out with their plans, their vision, their goal for the future, and then being told - sort of having their hands slapped and saying, well, sorry, that's not really what we meant. We've been talking to you for a year, but all of a sudden the game has changed and that's not the way it's going to be anymore. I spent that morning listening to their presentation and now I'm sort of wondering, okay, where are we going from here?

I would like to talk a bit about the toll road because that certainly is an issue with transportation in the province. My understanding was that, and from listening to what's been said here so far about this bill, and in reading through different documents, that this toll road was actually to be a public highway at some point, and that in fact there had been two previous announcements that this public highway was going to be built by the province. One of the announcements was in 1985, I believe, and the other in 1988. So now, all of a sudden, somebody comes in, Dexter Construction, I believe, and says they want to build a toll road.

I just want to talk about some of the issues involved in that, the toll road discussion.

A toll road, one way of looking at it, some people are saying, well it'll provide a highway that the province can't afford. It'll provide that highway in a two-year period. That highway would be built and constructed by Dexter. If not, then we're going to be waiting 10 years perhaps or more for that highway to be built.

There are drivers out there who are saying yes, I would pay 25 cents to go across this toll road to avoid the mess that we have on the Magazine Hill. However, you can look at the other side of the coin, I guess if you want to call it that, and say that - because the Department of Transportation and Public Works apparently is saying it would cost about $35 million to build that highway, and that's not even including the cost of the land, I don't believe, and that they'd incur costs because they would have to twin it. There would be some twinning to be done. There are costs generated because there's rough terrain and there are various other issues out there involved in that.

Then, of course, Dexter could build it at cost. If you look at the cost of the land by itself, I believe the province holds a portion of it, owns some of it, HRM owns another small portion, and there's some private ownership, but the vast amount of this land is owned by Dexter Construction and, of course, it includes a quarry. What is the cost of that? Well, it's questionable. Maybe it's a $100 million price tag on that. Of course, Dexter, if they built that

[Page 3906]

toll highway, would lose the revenue that they generate from the quarry. So I believe Dexter is saying no, it's not $100 million, it's much more than that. Whether or not the province has that kind of money is a question.

Some of the revenue possibilities if the toll highway was built, if you went through there once a day at 25 cents and 35,000 cars a day, by the year 2010 you're talking about $3.2 million a year, revenue. So it's a lot of revenue. Again, I guess we have to question, why would we allow a private company revenue from a roadway that this province was supposed to build toll-free; and twice they said, we're going to build this highway but they haven't. The longer you put off doing things, of course, the more cost prohibitive it becomes and the more expensive things become down the line.

We're hearing conflicting - I don't have the exact quote, but the Minister of Transportation and Public Works is saying, well, there's a feeling out there that he's not going to block the toll highway, but also that the province isn't looking at building a toll highway. I think people want some clarity on that situation.

The HRM Capital Region Transportation Authority is looking at possibilities - I'll move on to another topic - of providing more ferry service. They would like to see maybe, the possibility of some boarding points at Bedford, Purcells Cove and Shannon Park. The day they did the presentation to the Resources Committee they did talk about perhaps a new terminal on Lower Water Street. Apparently they have asked for that property from the province. They've said this is one option that they'd like to look at. They're saying they don't want the province's money, they just want to be able to go forward with their plan, their goal, their vision for HRM.

The other thing I would like to talk about is the Shearwater extension. That would be a project that certainly would cut down some of the numbers I've heard, 30 per cent in traffic from the Portland Valley area. Mr. Speaker, I live on Dorothea Drive, and you come out of there onto - I'm sort of at the end of Portland Street, the beginning of Cole Harbour Road and Caldwell Road, it's that intersection. There's hardly any difference between driving on those roads during the week as there is on the weekends. It's just to the point now of total frustration for people in that area.

I know that the city is looking, in some of their plans, at putting forward some of these faster bus routes in that area. I know right now it's very hard for people who live in the area of say, Kennedy Drive, Churchill Drive, that whole area down there. If you want to get to work, if you live there and you want to go to work on Cole Harbour Road, you actually have to get on a bus, go all the way down to the Sportsplex, and then get a pass and come all the way back out to Cole Harbour to go to work, say on Cole Harbour Road, maybe you're working at what used to be the Brass Rail Restaurant, now it's called Palladium. In fact, I know that because I've heard people talk about that. When I'm going home from here and I'll be going up Portland Street and turning on Dorothea, I will see the bus dropping

[Page 3907]

people off at the bus stop and the people are hopping out of the bus, walking across the street, and jumping in a taxi to get home. I mean this is ridiculous.

You've got young people working at minimum wage jobs in this city. It's not cheap to get on the bus. If you've got a bike, you can't get it on the bus. There's nowhere for you to put your bike in a safe place. There are not enough bus routes. They don't come quickly enough and if you've got to be at work at 8:30 a.m., and you've got to get up, I don't know what time, you're getting up at 6:00 a.m., 5:30 a.m., well, before then if you've got to get ready to go to work. You're trying to hop on this bus and you're on the bus for how long, you're travelling on this bus all the way down to the Sportsplex which is totally at the other end, you know, at the harbour, when you're out in Dartmouth East and you've got to go down the harbour and then back up again and this is going to happen in the morning before you go to work and then at night.

So do you know what's happening, Mr. Speaker? People aren't taking the bus. Do you know what they're doing? They're taking taxis. Do you know what it costs for somebody to get to Churchill Drive and Kennedy to Cole Harbour Road? It's $10, so if you're working minimum wage and you're trying to get from there over to there, it's costing you $10, that's just one way. Now, seriously, and you're talking about kids, our youth, who are working at minimum wage in this province and, do you know what, most jobs in the province still have minimum wage. (Interruptions)

Yes, so the first four hours of your work you're paying for the taxi. It's not funny because these are young people who, number one, are having a hard time finding a place to live in this city. Then they've got these minimum wage jobs. They may be a few cents above minimum wage. They're working very hard. Some of them are working two jobs, then they're trying to put themselves through some kind of a post-secondary education, or save up some money, or move, you know, buy something. So we're not letting people move forward. We're sort of keeping people stuck down here, you know, so we definitely need to move forward on the way that we provide transportation in HRM, number one, and most likely all across the province.

Just a couple sort of facts, I guess. I was looking at the interim growth management plan strategy. It was like a little flyer that the Halifax Regional Municipality put out and it says that they're developing a regional plan that will regulate the future land use over the next 25 years. They offer a couple of really interesting notes there that it costs an average of $7,500 per year to maintain one kilometre of a two-lane paved roadway. That doesn't even include snow and ice control. So there's a cost involved every time we build a road. They're saying that if our current pattern of growth continues, we would need to spend more than $150 million just to satisfy the demand for newer expanded roads to accommodate almost half a million people by 2028. That's a lot of roads and that's a lot of money.

[Page 3908]

I think we've got to seriously look at some mass transit, the ferry service, bike racks, the way that we build our communities, so that our youth don't have to get on a bus for x amount of hours and spend $20 a day getting to and from work. I mean this is man hours. It takes a lot of energy and it takes a lot of their time and I think we would rather have people spending their time doing some other things.

[3:45 p.m.]

Keeping on the theme of maybe a better way of building things or our communities - the Ecology Action Centre has some wonderful examples of what a sustainable Halifax might look like. These are things that would encourage transit-orientated development. So they're talking about things like designing streets to accommodate walking and cycling, not just cars. I think we've come to this idea that streets are built for cars and we've forgotten about us, the pedestrians, the people on bikes, the people who don't own a car - the people who want to take a bus. We have to be able to build our communities in a way that are more people friendly. It's not just all about the cars. I know we all love our cars, but we all have to be able to live in the same city and get along with each other.

Mr. Speaker, another point that the Ecology Action Centre makes is that when we talk about bikes, we could have a network of bike lanes. We need the bike racks on the buses, we all know that. We need a bicycle-friendly HRM. That's what we need. That's what we could call it I guess - a bike-friendly HRM.

I think we need to encourage - again, this is the Ecology Action Centre, but I think we can all agree, we need to encourage walking through attractive and safe pedestrian facilities. We need sidewalks on our streets, safe street crossings, places that we can sit down and enjoy our communities so that there's not always a car whizzing by and you're afraid to cross the street. Talk about Caldwell Road and Dorothea Drive - those lights, that's treacherous. When I was in the school system and I was fighting to save the school bus for Bel Ayr School, we went out and measured and found out how many cars were going by there - I was afraid to cross that street. I won't cross there, to tell you the truth. I won't cross there. I walk down to the next set of lights that's by the Superstore, Otega Drive, and that's where I press the button because it's only four lanes. Up at the other lights, there's four and four and six come out of there, and four out of there - half the time the lights don't work. There are kids bused across from there over to the schools on the other side of the highway.

Mr. Speaker, I think we need to design some car-free streets, totally car free. Wouldn't that be nice, just be able to sit out there, maybe at a coffee shop or something - Argyle Street? Close it off. You can sit out there and you don't have to smell these emissions. The honourable member for Dartmouth North is saying they do that in Europe, yes, they do. They do it in Europe, they have these cafes. Well, in P.E.I., if you go over to P.E.I., in Charlottetown, they have the streets blocked off. It's beautiful. You can sit there, you have your lunch - I don't understand why we haven't done it in Halifax yet.

[Page 3909]

We need to keep the streets narrow, particularly in residential areas. We need to use traffic management and traffic calming to control vehicle impacts on our streets. We need to shift some funding priorities from ever more roads and highways, we need to balance everything, but we need to look at providing more buses and we need to provide designated buses, vehicle lanes and let's not forget about the Access-A-Bus because that is an issue. Right now our disabled people and people that are accessing that Access-A-Bus, I think they have to book it two weeks in advance. There's not enough of these buses, number one. We definitely need to think about some of those issues when we're designing our communities in the future.

Mr. Speaker, at this point I would like to move adjournment of debate. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is to adjourn debate on Bill No. 64.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I wonder if I could have the consent of the House to return to the order of business, Presenting Reports of Committees?

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the Chairman of the Committee on Law Amendments, I am directed to report that the committee has met and considered the following bill:

Bill No. 40 - Assessment Act.

and the committee recommends this bill to the favourable consideration of the House, with certain amendments.

[Page 3910]

MR. SPEAKER: Ordered that this bill be referred to the Committee of the Whole House on Bills.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, further, I would ask for the unanimous consent of the House to add Bill No. 40 to today's order paper.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I move that you do now leave the Chair and the House resolve itself into a Committee of the Whole House on Bills.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

The motion is carried.

[3:51 p.m. The House resolved itself into a CWH on Bills with Acting Deputy Speaker Mr. William Dooks in the Chair.]

[3:56 p.m. CWH on Bills rose and the House reconvened. Mr. Speaker, Hon. Murray Scott, resumed the Chair.]

MR. SPEAKER: The Chairman of the Committee of the Whole House on Bills reports:

THE CLERK: That the committee has met and considered the following bills:

Bill No. 40 - Assessment Act.

Bill No. 54 - Saint Peter's Evangelical Lutheran Church Incorporation Act.

Bill No. 55 - Lenihan (Municipality of the District of Chester) Retiring Allowance Act.

Bill No. 56 - Nova Scotia Federation of Anglers and Hunters Act.

[Page 3911]

Bill No. 60 - Antigonish Farmers' Mutual Insurance Company Act.

Bill No. 69 - United Way of Halifax Region Act.

Bill No. 70 - Municipal Law Amendment (2004) Act.

and the chairman has been instructed to recommend these bills to the favourable consideration of the House, each without amendment.

MR. SPEAKER: Ordered that these bills be read for a third time on a future day.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call the order of business, Private and Local Bills for Second Reading.

PRIVATE AND LOCAL BILLS FOR SECOND READING

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Government House Leader.

MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 82.

Bill No. 82 - Halifax Regional Water Commission Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Waverley-Fall River-Beaver Bank.

MR. GARY HINES: Mr. Speaker, I move second reading of Bill No. 82.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Cole Harbour-Eastern Passage.

MR. KEVIN DEVEAUX: Mr. Speaker, I wanted to speak for a few minutes on this piece of legislation, with regard to the Halifax Regional Water Commission, an organization that was, I presume, a merger back in the mid-1990s. When the Halifax Regional Municipality was created, they merged the Dartmouth Water Commission and the City of Halifax Water Commission. In some ways this legislation just allows them to be able to go through the process of borrowing money in order to cover the costs of service being provided to areas in Metro Halifax, and then allows them to be able to collect it through the City of Halifax.

This is legislation that particularly impacts on areas of new growth, Mr. Speaker. The member who moved the bill, the member for Waverley-Fall River-Beaver Bank, the member for Timberlea-Prospect, my riding, potentially, and in the next few years, the member for Eastern Shore, the member for Preston, these are areas that are going to have extensions of sewer and water in the coming years, as we see growth develop in the metro area. In my area,

[Page 3912]

I've personally seen how people have been impacted by the costs of providing these services, particularly, I can say from my area, because of the large amount of bedrock, it's very expensive to be able to provide the sewer and water. There's a lot of blasting done, there's a lot of work that's required.

It can be quite expensive. I guess I just wanted to put on the record that I'm glad to see that there are some changes being made in the legislation. I don't think it will impact, in any way, the cost that's being imposed on these people for having to provide this service, but if this makes it easier for people to be able to defer the costs of providing the service through their tax bills, then I'm for it, as a means of ensuring that people won't have to pay up-front for these services and will have the opportunity, if the Water Commission can get the money borrowed and then have it paid back over time through the people who are receiving the service.

I just want to say, as well, that the Halifax Regional Water Commission has provided those services in my area, I hope they continue to provide extended service. There are people in my area who actually have what is called a small water system that is operated by the Halifax Regional Water Commission. I know they're in other areas as well. The water quality hasn't been very good in those areas. These are people who come from working-class areas, the trailer parks - there are others - and these are people who aren't able to afford the cost of bringing in the water and sewer services that would be required to ensure that they have a decent-quality level.

Potable water is something that I think everyone should have the right to. The small system being run in the Spruce Drive area, Silver Sands Trailer Park, is not working very well. That came up in a hearing last year with the URB. I'm glad to see that this legislation might help ensure that sooner rather than later the Halifax Regional Water Commission will be able to ensure that the service will be delivered to the people in that area and those between the Buffalo Club in Cow Bay and Silver Sands Trailer Park, who also require services as well, and I hope that this legislation - I'll be glad to see it move to the Committee on Law Amendments. Hopefully in the long run it will help ensure that services can be provided to those people who need it in the metro area. Thank you.

[4:00 p.m.]

MR. SPEAKER: If I recognize the member it will be to close the debate.

The honourable member for Waverley-Fall River-Beaver Bank.

MR. GARY HINES: Mr. Speaker, I move second reading of Bill No. 82.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for second reading of Bill No. 82. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

[Page 3913]

The motion is carried.

Ordered that this bill be referred to the Committee on Private and Local Bills.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call the order of business, Private Members' Public Bills for Second Reading.

PRIVATE MEMBERS' PUBLIC BILLS FOR SECOND READING

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, could we have the unanimous consent of the House to call Bill No. 84?

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 84.

Bill No. 84 - Motor Vehicle Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Cole Harbour-Eastern Passage.

MR. KEVIN DEVEAUX: Mr. Speaker, I'm glad to have an opportunity to speak on and move second reading of Bill No. 84. This is a small change to the Motor Vehicle Act and I just want to say for the record, when I have talked to members of this House about introducing this change to the Motor Vehicle Act many said to me, can't we already do this? I wanted to put on the record that this is a change that will allow - and it will only impact maybe a couple of dozen intersections in all of Nova Scotia, but it would allow someone who is on a one-way street and arrives at a stop sign or a red light on another one-way street, allows them to turn left, if that is permissible. Basically, in short terms, it is allowing a left turn on a red light or a stop sign at a one-way street onto another one-way street.

I want to say, Mr. Speaker, that this is something that was brought up to me by people in my constituency and other parts of Nova Scotia. For the record, six provinces in Canada currently allow this kind of left turn on a red light, or a stop sign and I believe they are British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario and New Brunswick. So we would become the seventh province if this legislation was allowed. I also understand, my statistics

[Page 3914]

may be a little out of date, but I think in the United States 43 out of 50 states allow this as well.

As I say, many people said to me don't we already do this? We don't in this province. It is currently illegal to turn left, from one one-way street to another one-way street. I like to call it the Sackville and Hollis amendment to the Motor Vehicle Act because to those of us here in the Legislature who happen to commute in downtown Halifax, if you travel down Hollis Street and stop at Sackville on your way back over to Water Street, right now you are stopped at that light and unable to turn left. This law would allow for this, and maybe at the most, two dozen locations in Nova Scotia where you'd be able to do this.

Again, if the government in certain circumstances wants to prohibit it as they do with turning right on a red light, Mr. Speaker, a sign can be allowed and in this case this legislation would say where a sign prohibits that you wouldn't be allowed to turn left. It's a simple little change to the Motor Vehicle Act, one that I think will make a little bit of a difference in people's lives, and I'm glad to see it being brought forward for debate. I so move it for second reading, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Richmond.

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: Mr. Speaker, I just wanted to raise a couple of points on Bill No. 84. One of our concerns, naturally, is the motoring public. Any time there are changes like this to the Motor Vehicle Act, safety is the number-one issue that's taken into consideration. I would hope that the Minister of Transportation, responsible for this department, would be able to consult with his staff as to what the implications of this are.

When you look at this quickly and you just speak about going from a one-way street onto another one-way street, making a left-hand turn, it does sound like something we should be doing already. But let me raise with you the concern that if you have a one-way street that is two lanes and you're turning onto another one-way street making a left-hand turn, technically, when you're in that left lane to make the turn, you have a vehicle right next to you that is, in essence, blocking your view of any oncoming traffic from that one-way street.

That's why I just asked the question if his department has looked at that as to whether it would be restricted simply to one-way streets that are just one lane, not two lanes, or if it would also be allowed for one-way streets which have more than one lane on them. I just raise that as a concern. This bill is one of those which, while there may have been some discussion, it is appearing here today for the first time and there doesn't appear to be any sort of backup from the Department of Transportation or any sort of reports which we could see as legislators as to why it would be a good measure to do so.

[Page 3915]

I simply leave it to the minister to maybe indicate to us, it seems he's made some gestures while I was raising that concern as to how they intend to address that, if this will only apply to specific intersections. Or how they intend to address the concern which I have just raised, which clearly, looking at it quickly, would provide a blind spot in a sense and not allow you to see oncoming traffic. I hope the minister will make some comments in that regard so that we are sure what is being proposed here is supported by his department and that they have reviewed it and have given their endorsement of any concerns such as those I have just raised. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Transportation and Public Works.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, this is a very interesting bill because as the honourable member for Richmond has just pointed out, it's not one that is clearly understood by the public. In fact, in jurisdictions where they have introduced legislation to permit a left turn from a one-way street onto a one-way street, they've had some difficulty educating the motoring public as to exactly what it entails.

First of all, in response to his specific question with regard to a two-lane street and the traffic that's on the right-hand side of that two-lane street, would not be permitted to make a left turn. You must be on the inside lane - in other words, the left lane - to make a turn onto another one-way street. That's number one.

Secondly, also I should point out that I've spoken to the proponents of this bill and it's been agreed that we move this bill through to the Law Amendments Committee and we'll leave the bill there for the Summer because we have to, first of all, make certain changes with regard to street signs. We also have some preparation as well for education of the public. But it will move traffic more rapidly than heretofore and that has been proven in those particular cities.

I don't know of any jurisdictions other than cities at the present time that have the signage and the permission to do so. The City of Montreal, you can make left turns on a (Interruption) That's right, now you can do both - left and right. There are also a couple of other jurisdictions where you can do so and in most American states now, in the cities you can turn left on a red light from a one-way street to a one-way street if you're in the left-hand lane.

I hope I haven't confused it further than what was already apparent when I started. However, as I say, I think it's good legislation and certainly in normal times it would help at this corner just over here where you turn from Prince Street onto Hollis Street. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: If I recognize the honourable member it will be to close the debate.

The honourable member for Cole Harbour-Eastern Passage.

[Page 3916]

MR. KEVIN DEVEAUX: Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the member for Richmond and the Minister of Transportation for their interventions on this bill. I think the points were taken and again, as the minister noted, this bill will not be passing this House in this session, it's an attempt to pass second reading to put it in the Law Amendments Committee for the Summer, to have an opportunity for members of the House, and members of the community maybe, to come forward with any ideas.

Mr. Speaker, raising the concern of the member for Richmond, I just want to say that right now you can turn right on a red light on a regular two-way street, and if it's two or three or four lanes, obviously there is other traffic to your left that you have to veer past in order to see what traffic is coming. Again, where there are safety issues, signage will be put in place, like we have now for right turns on a red light, and I'm sure that we can trust the traffic authority, whether it be HRM, CBRM, or the Department of Transportation and Public Works, to make sure that safety will always be the paramount concern. But where it is safe to do so and, as the minister said, it will increase the flow of traffic, I think it's a good piece of legislation. I move second reading of Bill No. 84.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for second reading of Bill No. 84. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

Ordered that this bill be referred to the Committee on Law Amendments.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I'm going to have to ask the Clerk if there's anything on the order paper at the present time respecting Private or Local or Public Bills for Second Reading or Committee of the Whole House. I believe there is nothing.

Mr. Speaker, I move that the House do now rise, and I would call upon the Liberal House Leader to tell us the business and hours for the morrow.

MR. SPEAKER: The Liberal House Leader on tomorrow's hours and order of business.

MR. MANNING MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, tomorrow the House will sit from 2:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. and, following the daily routine and Question Period, we will be calling Bill No. 53 and Bill No. 76. I move that this House do now adjourn.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is that the House adjourn until 2:00 p.m. tomorrow.

Is it agreed?

[Page 3917]

It is agreed.

Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The House is adjourned until 2:00 p.m. tomorrow.

[The House rose at 4:12 p.m.]

[Page 3918]

NOTICES OF MOTION UNDER RULE 32(3)

RESOLUTION NO. 1845

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Kynock Resources of Hammonds Plains took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Kynock Resources decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Kynock Resources for their unwavering generosity to their community.

RESOLUTION NO. 1846

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Squires Construction of Dartmouth took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Squires Construction decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Squires Construction for their unwavering generosity to their community.

[Page 3919]

RESOLUTION NO. 1847

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Mike Johnston of Kent Supplies took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Mike Johnston decided to donate his services because he recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Mike Johnston for his unwavering generosity to their community.

RESOLUTION NO. 1848

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Roofmasters of Dartmouth took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Roofmasters decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Roofmasters for their unwavering generosity to their community.

[Page 3920]

RESOLUTION NO. 1849

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas The Roofing Connection of Dartmouth took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas The Roofing Connection decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank The Roofing Connection for their unwavering generosity to their community.

RESOLUTION NO. 1850

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Anchor Plumbing of Enfield took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Anchor Plumbing decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Anchor Plumbing for their unwavering generosity to their community.

[Page 3921]

RESOLUTION NO. 1851

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Mapleleaf Seamless Eavestroughing of Shubenacadie took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Mapleleaf Seamless Eavestroughing decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Mapleleaf Seamless Eavestroughing for their unwavering generosity to their community.

RESOLUTION NO. 1852

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas T. Power Painting of Hammonds Plains took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas T. Power Painting decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank T. Power Painting for their unwavering generosity to their community.

[Page 3922]

RESOLUTION NO. 1853

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Halifax Insulators of Halifax took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Halifax Insulators decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Halifax Insulators for their unwavering generosity to their community.

RESOLUTION NO. 1854

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas A. Sinclair Construction of Halifax took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas A. Sinclair Construction decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank A. Sinclair Construction for their unwavering generosity to their community.

[Page 3923]

RESOLUTION NO. 1855

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Traditional Cabinets of Waverley took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Traditional Cabinets decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Traditional Cabinets for their unwavering generosity to their community.

RESOLUTION NO. 1856

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Wacky's Carpet and Flooring of Bedford took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Wacky's Carpet and Flooring decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Wacky's Carpet and Flooring for their unwavering generosity to their community.

[Page 3924]

RESOLUTION NO. 1857

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Taskmasters Contracting of Dartmouth took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Taskmasters Contracting decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Taskmasters Contracting for their unwavering generosity to their community.

RESOLUTION NO. 1858

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas NFL Heating of Mount Uniacke took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas NFL Heating decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank NFL Heating for their unwavering generosity to their community.

[Page 3925]

RESOLUTION NO. 1859

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Envirowaste of Lower Sackville took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Envirowaste decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Envirowaste for their unwavering generosity to their community.

RESOLUTION NO. 1860

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Lakeland Drywall of Dartmouth took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Lakeland Drywall decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Lakeland Drywall for their unwavering generosity to their community.

[Page 3926]

RESOLUTION NO. 1861

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Vern Kynock of Hammonds Plains took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Vern Kynock decided to donate his services because he recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Vern Kynock for his unwavering generosity to his community.

RESOLUTION NO. 1862

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Ray Grabo of Windsor took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Ray Grabo decided to donate his services because he recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolves that all members of this House thank Ray Grabo for his unwavering generosity to his community.

[Page 3927]

RESOLUTION NO. 1863

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas John Masters of J.W. Bird and Company Limited took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas John Masters decided to donate his services because he recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank John Masters for his unwavering generosity to his community.

RESOLUTION NO. 1864

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Hugh Smith of Rocky Lake Quarry took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Hugh Smith decided to donate his services because he recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Hugh Smith for his unwavering generosity to his community.

[Page 3928]

RESOLUTION NO. 1865

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Sheldon DeRoach of McLennan took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Sheldon DeRoach decided to donate his services because he recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Sheldon DeRoach for his unwavering generosity to his community.

RESOLUTION NO. 1866

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Dario Diremigio of Kent Building Supplies took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Dario Diremigio decided to donate his services because he recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Dario Diremigio for his unwavering generosity to his community.

[Page 3929]

RESOLUTION NO. 1867

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Mitten Vinyl Inc. of Dartmouth took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Mitten Vinyl Inc. decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolves that all members of this House thank Mitten Vinyl Inc. for their unwavering generosity to their community.

RESOLUTION NO. 1868

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Greg Burke Electrical of Enfield took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas Greg Burke Electrical decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank Greg Burke Electrical for their unwavering generosity to their community.

[Page 3930]

RESOLUTION NO. 1869

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas D C Siding of Lower Sackville took on the task of aiding in the repair of the Beacon House Caretaker's House in Sackville which had its grand opening May 13, 2004; and

Whereas countless suppliers provided the materials and labour free of charge, a very generous donation indeed to the families in the Sackville area and surrounding communities; and

Whereas D C Siding decided to donate their services because they recognized a need to have the Beacon House Caretaker's House repaired;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank D C Siding for their unwavering generosity to their community.

RESOLUTION NO. 1870

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the District of Argyle well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the

[Page 3931]

council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1871

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the District of Barrington well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1872

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

[Page 3932]

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the District of Chester well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1873

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the District of Clare well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1874

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

[Page 3933]

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the County of Colchester well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1875

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the County of Cumberland well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

[Page 3934]

RESOLUTION NO. 1876

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the District of Digby well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1877

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

[Page 3935]

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the District of East Hants well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1878

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the County of Antigonish well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1879

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

[Page 3936]

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the County of Annapolis well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1880

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the District of Guysborough well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

[Page 3937]

RESOLUTION NO. 1881

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the County of Inverness well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1882

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

[Page 3938]

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the County of Kings well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1883

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the District of Lunenburg well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1884

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

[Page 3939]

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the County of Pictou well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1885

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the County of Queens well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

[Page 3940]

RESOLUTION NO. 1886

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the County of Richmond well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1887

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

[Page 3941]

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the District of Shelburne well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1888

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the District of Yarmouth well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1889

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

[Page 3942]

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the County of Victoria well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1890

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the District of West Hants well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

[Page 3943]

RESOLUTION NO. 1891

By: Hon. Barry Barnet (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas this year marks the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas legislation which provided the incorporation of the municipal units was entitled the County Incorporation Act of 1879 and took effect on April 17th of that year; and

Whereas the Municipal Government Act is the present successor of the County Incorporation Act and encompasses the incorporation status of the new regional municipalities and the county/district municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the 125th Anniversary of the incorporation of rural municipal government and wish the staff and elected representatives of the Municipality of the District of St. Mary's well as they continue to honour the valued traditions of municipal government service as enshrined in the MGA by "providing good government, providing services, facilities and other things that, in the opinion of the council, are necessary or desirable for all or part of the municipality and developing and maintaining safe and viable communities."

RESOLUTION NO. 1892

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas the Springhill-Parrsboro Record is an important source of community news for thousands of residents of southern Cumberland County; and

Whereas Saturday evening at the Atlantic Community Newspapers Association Awards Banquet in Truro, Editor Susan Belliveau of the Record took home two first-place honours; and

Whereas Susan was judged to have the best photo essay from 46 entries, and she also had the Best General Interest Column out of 43 entries;

[Page 3944]

Therefore be it resolved that all MLAs applaud the dynamic work of Editor Susan Belliveau of the Springhill-Parrsboro Record and for being chosen the very best amongst her peers at Saturday's awards banquet.

RESOLUTION NO. 1893

By: Mr. William Dooks (Eastern Shore)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas a 75th birthday is a date that should not go unrecognized; and

Whereas Vera M. McGregor celebrated this milestone on April 8th of this year; and

Whereas Ms. McGregor makes her home in Head of Jeddore;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House extend their heartfelt congratulations and best wishes to Vera M. McGregor on the occasion of her 75th birthday.

RESOLUTION NO. 1894

By: Mr. William Dooks (Eastern Shore)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas 55 years of marriage is a milestone that should not go unrecognized; and

Whereas Fred and Marion Laybolt celebrated 55 years of marriage on February 12th; and

Whereas the couple currently make their home in Lake Charlotte;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House extend their heartfelt congratulations and best wishes to Fred and Marion Laybolt on the occasion of their 50th Wedding Anniversary.

[Page 3945]

RESOLUTION NO. 1895

By: Mr. William Dooks (Eastern Shore)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas 50 years of marriage is a milestone that should not go unrecognized; and

Whereas East Jeddore residents Robert and Doreen McKay celebrated 50 years of marriage on May 8th; and

Whereas family and friends gathered at the Jeddore Baptist Church to celebrate this special event;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House extend their heartfelt congratulations and best wishes to Robert and Doreen McKay on the occasion of their 50th Wedding Anniversary.

RESOLUTION NO. 1896

By: Mr. William Dooks (Eastern Shore)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas 65 years of marriage is a milestone that should not go unrecognized; and

Whereas Musquodoboit Harbour's Kenneth and Hilda Palmer will celebrate 65 years of marriage on May 15th; and

Whereas family and friends will gather at the St. James Community Hall in Head of Jeddore to celebrate this special event;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House extend their heartfelt congratulations and best wishes to Kenneth and Hilda Palmer on the occasion of their 65th Wedding Anniversary.

[Page 3946]

RESOLUTION NO. 1897

By: Mr. William Dooks (Eastern Shore)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas 50 years of marriage is a milestone that should not go unrecognized; and

Whereas Head of Jeddore residents Edmund and Sheila Faulkner celebrated 50 years of marriage on April 24th; and

Whereas family and friends gathered at the Musquodoboit Fire Hall to celebrate this special event;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House extend their heartfelt congratulations and best wishes to Edmund and Sheila Faulkner on the occasion of their 50th Wedding Anniversary.

RESOLUTION NO. 1898

By: Mr. William Dooks (Eastern Shore)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas 50 years of marriage is a milestone that should not go unrecognized; and

Whereas Lake Charlotte residents Bub and Maureen Russell will celebrate 50 years of marriage on May 15th; and

Whereas family and friends gathered at the Oyster Pond Fire Hall to celebrate this special event;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House extend their heartfelt congratulations and best wishes to Bub and Maureen Russell on the occasion of their 50th Wedding Anniversary.

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RESOLUTION NO. 1899

By: Mr. William Dooks (Eastern Shore)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas we are very fortunate along the Eastern Shore to have residents who volunteer their time to making our communities better places to live; and

Whereas on April 18th of this year a special recognition service was held at the Jeddore United Baptist Church for their dedicated volunteers; and

Whereas 20 people were recognized for serving the church for 25 years or more;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House extend their thanks to the volunteers of the Jeddore United Baptist Church, and recognize them for their many years of service.