Assemblée Législative de la Nouvelle-Écosse

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21 septembre 2017

HANSARD 06-2

DEBATES AND PROCEEDINGS

Speaker: Honourable Cecil Clarke

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.

Second Session

FRIDAY, MAY 5, 2006

TABLE OF CONTENTS PAGE
PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS:
Fin.: Heating Fuel - Tax Remove, Mr. D. Dexter 34
Nat. Res.: Alba Quarry - Oppose, Mr. Gerald Sampson 34
Fin.: Heating Fuel - Tax Remove, Hon. M. Scott 34
Environ. & Lbr.: Vision - Moratorium, Mr. J. MacDonell 35
NSPC: Power Rate Increases - Oppose, Mr. Gerald Sampson 35
TPW: Rodney/Windham Hill Rd. - Pave, Hon. M. Scott 36
Stora: Crisis - Resolve, Mr. C. Parker 36
Educ. - Operation Groundswell, Ms. M. More 36
TABLING REPORTS, REGULATIONS AND OTHER PAPERS:
Anl. Rpt., Hfx-Dart. Bridge Comm'n. - 2005, Hon. M. Baker 37
Healthy Balance Research Program: A Portrait of Unpaid Care in Nova Scotia,
Hon. J. Streatch 37
STATEMENTS BY MINISTERS:
Canadian Census (May 16, 2006) - Participate , Hon. M. Baker 37
Status of Women - Unpaid Caregiving, Hon. J. Streatch 39
GOVERNMENT NOTICES OF MOTION:
Res. 1, Estimates - Committee of the Whole House on Supply - Referred,
Hon. M. Baker 42
Res. 2, Crosby, Sidney - Hockey Accomplishments, The Premier 42
Vote - Affirmative 43
Res. 3, Environ. & Lbr. - Nat'l. Day of Mourning,
Hon. C. Bolivar-Getson 43
Vote - Affirmative 44
Res. 4, Shubenacadie Canal Comm'n. - Congrats, Hon. B. Taylor 44
Vote - Affirmative 45
Res. 5, Ross, Dr. Joyce - Jerome Award, Hon. B. Barnet 45
Vote - Affirmative 45
Res. 6, 4-H Weekend - Participants, Hon. R. Chisholm 46
Vote - Affirmative 46
Res. 7, Dexter, Rob - Jr. Achievement Award, Hon. K. Morash 46
Vote - Affirmative 47
Res. 8, North American OS&H Wk. (04/30-05/0606) - Observe,
Hon. C. Bolivar-Getson 47
Vote - Affirmative 48
Res. 9, Huggard, Dick - NSAC Hon. Deg., Hon. R. Chisholm 48
Vote - Affirmative 49
Res. 10, Nat'l. Mining Wk. (05/08-05/14/06) - Celebrate,
Hon. B. Taylor 49
Vote - Affirmative 49
Res. 11, Mitchell, Alyssa - Fin. IQ Contest, Hon. M. Baker 49
Vote - Affirmative 50
INTRODUCTION OF BILLS:
Bill No. 1, Protection from Illegal Drugs Act, Hon. M. Scott 50
Bill No. 2, Safer Communities and Neighbourhoods Act,50
Mr. K. Deveaux 50
Bill No. 3, Industrial Development Act, Mr. Manning MacDonald 50
Bill No. 4, Safer Communities and Neighbourhoods Act,
Hon. M. Scott 50
Bill No. 5, Education Act, Mr. D. Dexter 51
Bill No. 6, Members and Public Employees Disclosure Act,
Mr. Michel Samson 51
Bill No. 7, Police and Peace Officers' Memorial Day Act,
Hon. M. Scott 51
Bill No. 8, Africville Act, Ms. Maureen MacDonald 51
Bill No. 9, Public Utilities Act, Mr. Manning MacDonald 51
Bill No. 10, Criminal Notoriety Act, Hon. M. Scott 51
Bill No. 11, Cape Breton Strip Mines Moratorium Act,
Mr. F. Corbett 51
Bill No. 12, Fairness in Fees Act, Mr. Michel Samson 51
Bill No. 13, Justice Administration Amendment (2006) Act,
Hon. M. Scott 51
Bill No. 14, Forests Act, Mr. J. MacDonell 51
Bill No. 15, Government Purchases Act, Mr. Michel Samson 51
Bill No. 15, Government Purchases Act, Mr. Michel Samson
Bill No. 15, Government Purchases Act, Mr. Michel Samson
Bill No. 16, Personal Information International Disclosure Protection Act,
Hon. M. Scott 51
Bill No. 17, Energy-efficient Appliances Act, Ms. J. Massey 51
Bill No. 18, Provincial Finance Act, Mr. Michel Samson 51
Bill No. 19, Wills Act, Hon. M. Scott 52
Bill No. 20, Municipal Government Act, Mr. H. Epstein 52
Bill No. 21, Wilderness Areas Protection Act, Ms. M. Raymond 52
Bill No. 22, Pugwash Village Grants Act, Mr. E. Fage 52
Bill No. 23, Employment Support and Income Assistance Act,
Ms. M. More 52
Bill No. 24, Assessment Act, Mr. G. Steele 52
Bill No. 25, Volunteer Services Act,
Mr. David Wilson (Sackville-Cobequid) 52
Bill No. 26, Maritime Conservatory Reorganization Act,
Mr. H. Epstein 52
Bill No. 27, Income Tax Act, Mr. W. Estabrooks 52
NOTICES OF MOTION:
Res. 12, Gov't. (Can.) - Child Care Funding, Mr. D. Dexter 53
Vote - Affirmative 53
Res. 13, Battle of the Atlantic - Anniv. (61st), 53
Mr. Manning MacDonald 53
Vote - Affirmative 54
Res. 14, Deuville's Rink - Hockeyville Search,
Hon. J. Muir (by Hon. B. Taylor) 54
Vote - Affirmative 55
Res. 15, Connolly, Don - Pub. Broadcasting Anniv. (30th),
Ms. Maureen MacDonald 55
Vote - Affirmative 56
Res. 16, Anna. Valley Work Activity Soc. - Anniv. (20th),
Mr. L. Glavine 56
Vote - Affirmative 57
Res. 17, Lyon, Colton - Heroism, Hon. R. Russell 57
Vote - Affirmative 58
Res. 18, Shearwater 406 Squadron - Anniv. (165th),
Mr. K. Deveaux 58
Vote - Affirmative 59
Res. 19, Juno Awards: Hosts - Acknowledge, Mr. W. Gaudet 59
Vote - Affirmative 59
Res. 20, Cormier, Victor - Salute, The Premier 59
Vote - Affirmative 60
Res. 21, Highland Fisheries: Clearwater - Bargaining Resume,
Mr. F. Corbett 60
Res. 22, Cantwell, Raylene - Sobey Award,
Mr. Gerald Sampson 61
Vote - Affirmative 61
Vote - Affirmative
Res. 23, Ritcey. Sherry - Hockey Recognition, Hon. M. Baker 62
Vote - Affirmative 62
Res. 24, Donaldson, Bernice - E. Hants Prov. Vol. Rep.,
Mr. J. MacDonell 62
Vote - Affirmative 63
Res. 25, Phillips, Katie - Remembrance Day Poster Award,
Mr. Gerald Sampson 63
Vote - Affirmative 64
Res. 26, Shelburne Port Auth. - Leadership, Mr. C. O'Donnell 64
Vote - Affirmative 65
Res. 27, Dart. Gen. Hosp. - Revolution '06, Ms. J. Massey 65
Vote - Affirmative 65
Res. 28, Cormier, Kaitlin Ann Grace - Bravery, Mr. H. Theriault 66
Vote - Affirmative 66
Res. 29, Gunning, Dave/Fortune, JD - Congrats, Dr. J. Hamm 66
Vote - Affirmative 67
Res. 30, St. George Greek Orthodox Commun. - Initiative,
Ms. M. Raymond 67
Vote - Affirmative 68
Res. 31, MacPherson, Tom - Crawford Award,
Mr. David Wilson (Glace Bay) 68
Vote - Affirmative 69
Res. 32, Thurston, Harry - Atl. Poetry Prize Nomination, Mr. E. Fage 69
Vote - Affirmative 69
Res. 33, TPW: Rural Infrastructure - Invest, Mr. C. Parker 70
Res. 34, Kohler, Pastor Frank/Lake Echo Fellowship Baptist Church -
Expansion, Mr. K. Colwell 70
Vote - Affirmative 71
Res. 35, Lunenburg - Model Vol. Commun. Award (2006),
Hon. M. Baker 71
Vote - Affirmative 72
Res. 36, Greater Hfx. Big Brothers Big Sisters - Fundraising,
Ms. M. More 72
Vote - Affirmative 73
Res. 37, Sydney Kinsmen Club - Anniv. (70th),
Mr. Manning MacDonald 73
Vote - Affirmative 73
Res. 38, Baird, Amy - Basketball Award, Mr. J. DeWolfe 73
Vote - Affirmative 74
Res. 39, Gov't. (Can.): Peace Tower Flag - Policy, Mr. G. Steele 74
Vote - Affirmative 75
Vote - Affirmative
Vote - Affirmative
Res. 40, Wilson, William "Billy" - Meritorious Serv. Medal,
Mr. David Wilson (Glace Bay) 75
Vote - Affirmative 76
Res. 41, Lohnes, Fred: Liverpool Firefighters Assoc. - Anniv. (40th),
Hon. K. Morash 76
Vote - Affirmative 76
Res. 42, Educ. - Sch. Closure Review, Mr. J. Pye 77
Vote - Affirmative 77
Res. 43, Selig, Steve: Police Serv. - Honour, Mr. K. Colwell 77
Vote - Affirmative 78
Res. 44, Pratt & Whitney - Safety Record, Hon. B. Taylor 78
Vote - Affirmative 79
Res. 45, CBRM: Pub. Housing - Asbestos, Mr. G. Gosse 79
Res. 46, Gidney, Paul - Powerlifting, Mr. H. Theriault 80
Vote - Affirmative 80
Res. 47, NSAC: Grad Class (2006) - Congrats.,
Hon. J. Muir (by Hon. C. d'Entremont) 81
Vote - Affirmative 81
Res. 48, Kingswood - Busing,
Mr. W. Estabrooks (by Mr. David Wilson (Sackville-Cobequid) 81
Vote - Affirmative 82
Res. 49, Northumberland Strait Lobster Fishermen - Safe Season,
Mr. C. Parker 82
Vote - Affirmative 83
Res. 50, Kraushar, Ruth/Interlude Spa - Anniv. (30th), Ms. M. More 83
Vote - Affirmative 84
Res. 51, Gov't. (N.S.): Maternity Leave - Self-Employed Women,
Mr. K. Deveaux 84
Vote - Affirmative 84
GOVERNMENT MOTIONS:
ADDRESS IN REPLY:
Mr. D. Dexter 85
Adjourned debate 90
ADJOURNMENT, House rose to meet again on Mon. May 8th at 7:00 p.m. 91
NOTICES OF MOTION UNDER RULE 32(3):
Res. 52, Feetham, Bryan & Rose - Anniv. (25th), Mr. W. Estabrooks 92
Res. 53, St. Margaret's Bay Duck - Atl. Cup, Mr. W. Estabrooks 92
Res. 54, Cross, Karen Lee - Retirement, Mr. W. Estabrooks 93
Res. 55, Cashen, Mike - Atl. Jr. Championships, Mr. W. Estabrooks 93
Res. 56, Lamplugh, Sheila - Retirement, Mr. W. Estabrooks 94
Res. 57, Rhyno, Sarah - Curling Medal, Mr. W. Estabrooks 94
Res. 58, Cuming, Mark - Retirement, Mr. W. Estabrooks 95
Res. 59, Little, Stanley & Veronica - Anniv. (60th),
Mr. W. Estabrooks 95
Res. 60, Bennett, Brenda - Retirement, Mr. W. Estabrooks 96
Res. 60, Bennett, Brenda - Retirement, Mr. W. Estabrooks
Res. 61, Forever Band - Congrats, Mr. R. MacKinnon 96
Res. 62, Hopkins, Erica - Girl Guide Conf.,
Mr. R. MacKinnon 96
Res. 63, Richards, Jodi & Scott - Hauler of the Yr. Award,
Mr. R. MacKinnon 97
Res. 64, Patterson, Bev/Jamieson, Errol - Esso Women's Hockey
Championships, Mr. R. MacKinnon 97
Res. 65, Port Morien Dev. Assoc. - Volunteers,
Mr. R. MacKinnon 98

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HALIFAX, FRIDAY, MAY 5, 2006

Fifty-ninth General Assembly

Second Session

10:00 A.M.

SPEAKER

Hon. Cecil Clarke

DEPUTY SPEAKERS

Mr. James DeWolfe, Mr. Charles Parker, Mr. Keith Colwell

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please.

The honourable Leader in the House of the Liberal Party.

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: Mr. Speaker, I stand today on a point of privilege under very unfortunate circumstances. The rights and privileges afforded to members of the House of Assembly are a cornerstone in the foundation of parliamentary practice and procedure in our democracy. If our members cannot fully function because of outside interference, then the citizens of this province are not getting their full value for their taxpaying dollars.

Mr. Speaker, over the last two months, I firmly believe that my rights as a member of this House of Assembly have been dismissed by ministers of this government and the respective public servants. With regard to documents requested by the Standing Committee on Public Accounts concerning OIC 2006-99 and OIC 2006-101, myself and the other members of the Public Accounts Committee have vigorously tried to co-operate with the Office of Economic Development to have the documents in question fully disclosed within reasonable time frames.

25

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Mr. Speaker, for the purpose of a compilation of information and to aid you in your ruling, I've provided a timeline of events to illustrate the willingness for co-operation from our committee and the reluctance to adhere to requests and warrants from the government. On February 22, 2006, the Public Accounts Committee passed a motion that read as follows:

"The committee directs the clerk to inform the Office of Economic Development that it wishes to receive, no later than noon on February 27, 2006, a copy of the office's complete files on S&J Potato Farms and Magic Valley Fun Park . . . If the Office of Economic Development fails to comply with the committee's wishes as expressed in Paragraphs 1 and 2, the Public Accounts Committee authorizes the Chair to issue a subpoena to compel the production of the files and to compel the attendance of the witnesses . . ."

On February 27th, Paul Taylor, CEO of the Office of Economic Development, sent a letter to the chair of the committee stating that Cabinet privilege documents have been identified as part of the motion from the committee, and that those documents would not be submitted. On February 27, 2006, the Office of Economic Development submitted a small package of documents to the clerk of the Public Accounts Committee. Subsequent to the realization that the Office of Economic Development did not fully adhere to Clause 2 of the February 22nd motion of the Public Accounts Committee, on March 1, 2006, the chair of the committee issued a subpoena to the Office of Economic Development and to Nova Scotia Business Incorporated for the production and full disclosure of documents relating to financial assistance awarded to S&J Potato Farms and Magic Valley Fun Park.

On March 1st, after the issuance of the subpoena, the Office of Economic Development submitted heavily censored documents, which included censored e-mails between public servants with claims of "Cabinet confidentiality" to the clerk of the Public Accounts Committee, giving what they described as full compliance with the subpoena. On March 3rd, as requested by the March 11th subpoena issued to the Office of Economic Development and Nova Scotia Business Incorporated, several more documents were submitted to the clerk of the committee. A written letter from the Department of Justice was included, stating that the Office of Economic Development has complied with the subpoena.

On March 3rd, the Subcommittee on Public Accounts met for the purpose of reviewing documents submitted by the Office of Economic Development and Nova Scotia Business Inc., to determine which documents should be made public and which should remain confidential. The subcommittee, in reasonable fashion, determined that documents pertaining to S&J Potato Farms financial statements and T2 Corporations Income Tax Return files were to be kept confidential.

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On March 6th the subcommittee met again and determined that the warrant had not been fully complied with and a letter dated March 7, 2006 was sent to the Department of Justice, pursuant to the deputy minister's earlier letter stating OED's compliance. The letter once again asked for the "unsevered" documents to be submitted to the Public Accounts Committee.

On March 13, 2006, the Deputy Minister of Justice responded to the chair of the committee reiterating the stance that there had been full compliance with the subpoena issued to the Office of Economic Development.

In the days following, the Subcommittee on Public Accounts met several times in the month of April, specifically on the 5th, 12th and the 25th, reviewing severed and censored documents received from the Office of Economic Development, Nova Scotia Business Inc., and the Nova Scotia Farm Loan Board.

On those dates, as is documented through Hansard, from those meetings the committee - although frustrated with the lack of compliance from the government - conducted itself in a reasonable manner, giving specific consideration for confidential business information. The committee on all occasions decided against releasing information that was determined to be confidential business and personal information.

Mr. Speaker, in the documents presented to the Public Accounts Committee from the Office of Economic Development, there are several instances of claims - of Cabinet confidentiality, of Crown privilege and solicitor/client privilege. The Public Accounts Committee, as stated in several generally recognized parliamentary House and procedure texts, has the right to request the production of documents.

As stated in the Robert Merleau text, House of Commons Procedure and Practice, "Where a committee meets with a refusal to provide a document it deems essential to its work, the committee may pass a motion ordering its production."

On March 1, 2006, the Public Accounts Committee did just that. The committee also has the right to not accept the claims of Crown privilege that had been claimed by the executive on the documents in question. Derek Lee's text, The Power of Parliamentary Houses to Send for Persons, Papers and Records, states, "In practice, parliamentary committees have more readily given consideration to claims of Crown Privilege when invoked by a Minister . . . However, in the final analysis, the committee remains the final arbiter of such claims [emphasis added]. "

The Public Accounts Committee on March 1st chose to not accept those claims and therefore by not fully disclosing the documents in question, the Office of Economic Development has not fully complied with the subpoena dated March 1, 2006.

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Mr. Speaker, I also bring to your attention a letter dated May 3, 2006 from the Chief Legislative Counsel for the House of Assembly, Mr. Gordon Hebb, which clearly supports my above claims and my reasoning for standing in the House today on a point of privilege. I find it an extremely unfortunate circumstance that I must rise in the House today on a point of privilege, but I do firmly believe that there is, in fact, a prima facie case of privilege in this matter.

Mr. Speaker, I believe there has been substantive disruption in my abilities to perform my duties as a member of this House in determining the extent to which our former Premier and a former Minister of this Crown acted inappropriately with regard to financial assistance awarded to S&J Potato Farms and Magic Valley Fun Park. My rights and the rights of all members of this House have been interfered with due to the lack of compliance with the warrant issued to the Office of Economic Development.

I believe I have provided sufficient evidence for you to rule on this matter shortly and then deal with the subsequent motion I will introduce once you have made your final ruling.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Halifax Needham.

MS. MAUREEN MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, I rise in my place with respect to this matter, not on behalf of the Public Accounts Committee, but as a member of this Legislature who also chairs the Public Accounts Committee.

It is my view that the warrants have not been complied with as outlined in the facts set out by my colleague earlier. I support the claim that there has been a breach of privilege of members of this Legislature who serve on this committee. We have not been able to exercise our role as watchdog in the public interest of the expenditures of funds of this province with respect to this matter. Yesterday, the Subcommittee on Public Accounts met and there was agreement that we would bring forward, at the Public Accounts Committee on Wednesday morning, a report to be tabled in this House, with agreement from the committee, looking for a remedy from yourself as Speaker with respect to the breach of members' privileges.

Mr. Speaker, I do support, as a member of this Legislature, the claim that the warrants have not been properly complied with and therefore there has been a breach of the privileges of members of this Legislature. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: I will take the matter under advisement and report back to the House at my earliest possible opportunity.

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[10:15 a.m.]

The honourable member for Preston.

MR. KEITH COLWELL: I, too, Mr. Speaker, rise on a point of personal privilege. I stand today on a point of privilege after receiving documents pursuant to the request and subpoenas issued by the Public Accounts Committee. Several documents were highly censored due to claims of Cabinet confidentiality and solicitor/client privilege. Although Cabinet confidentiality may be a convention that has been in place for some time, the claim in and of itself is certainly not an absolute claim that should be taken at face value by members of our committee and members of the House of Assembly.

The term "Cabinet confidentiality" is actually a claim of Crown privilege and is most commonly referred to as public interest immunity. This claim is usually reserved for matters of national defence and public safety, not for communications between public servants in regard to financial assistance given to a company, and it most certainly is not reserved for information regarding who the target audience will be, what the communication plan or who the key speaker will be. These are just a few examples of the absurd circumstances for which many of these claims have been made. The committee and the House can choose not to accept the claim, but the Public Accounts Committee has done just that.

Mr. Speaker, with regard to solicitor/client privilege the solicitor must always make the claim, but the client can lift the claim or instruct a solicitor to do so. When the Public Accounts Committee first received the documents, there existed great confusion over many of these claims, given the information that is usually provided, regarding the reasoning for the above-mentioned claims. In the case of solicitor/client privilege, information usually divulges who the solicitor is and who the client is. After several asks the Deputy Minister of Justice submitted a letter dated March 17, 2006, which states "Crown privilege can only be waived by the Executive Council. . . " - in other words a Cabinet - and that the legal advisor of the Executive Council, the Attorney General, had advised the deputy that the claim had not been waived. In the same letter of March 17th, the deputy states that the solicitor in the claim refers to the Attorney General and that the client is the Executive Council. Once again, the Executive Council and the Attorney General have waived none of these claims. This was extremely troubling and disconcerting.

Now to refer to the procedural text of parliamentary privileges, in Derek Lee's text, The Power of Parliamentary Houses to Send for Persons, Papers and Records, when discussing claims of Crown privilege he states, "this immunity has never been formally acknowledged by a House of Commons as inhibiting its investigatory power."

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Quoting Harry Evans, Lee goes on to say that "the Executive [Council] enjoys no privilege which puts it above Parliament, having in mind that an overriding principle of the parliamentary system of government is, and must be, the accountablity of the Executive [Council]. Any recognition of [Crown] privilege, as an unchallengeable right, to deny information to parliament, is inconsistent with that fundamental principle."

After seeing that the Public Accounts Committee did not accept the claims of Executive Council and the Attorney General still refused to lift the claims of Executive Council and the Attorney General still refused to lift the claims and provide full disclosure and comply with the wishes of the House and its committees, which is a cornerstone of our parliamentary system.

Mr. Speaker, I rise today extremely frustrated that the rights that have been afforded to me by this House have been severely interfered with by the Executive Council and the Attorney General. The principle of Executive Council is not above the House of Assembly, is a principle that I believe has been lost in this current Cabinet and current and former Attorney General. Crown privilege is not a right reserved for politicians to protect themselves from scrutiny. I reiterate that the common practice and common convention for the use and claim of Crown privilege has been reserved for matters that are national security and public safety.

Mr. Speaker, the key messages and talking points and briefing notes regarding financial assistance, is it a matter of national security and public safety? I don't think so. The recommended spokesman and target audience on a communication plan, is it a matter of national security and safety? I don't think so. I have documents here which I will table. Is an e-mail between two communications officers discussing wording and briefing notes pertaining to financial assistance awarded to a company a matter of national security or public safety? I sure don't think so.

Mr. Speaker, I think the answer to all these questions is obvious. I believe the Speaker has to provide sufficient evidence for you to rule on this as a prima facie case of privilege, and I ask we immediately move on my subsequent motion.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Finance.

HON. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker, I rise on behalf of the government to respond to the claim of privilege brought by members. To state the obvious, the government does not agree with that view. (Interruptions)

MR. SPEAKER: Order. Order, please.

MR. BAKER: Mr. Speaker, this government respects the rights and privileges of members, but part of this institution is parliamentary government, and there has been a

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long-standing tradition in our parliamentary government to respect Crown privilege, and an even longer tradition in our justice system to respect solicitor/client privilege. In fact, the members who are members of the Bar here will know that in most circumstances members of the Bar are also obliged not even to disclose the name of their clients upon request.

Mr. Speaker, the suggestion that somehow this is a novel claim of Crown privilege or a novel claim of solicitor/client privilege is just simply not correct. In point of fact, these are historical claims, and historical practices of this House, and I am not aware of any situation where in this House, in the past, there has ever been the Crown or a solicitor/client relationship that has been violated. So, obviously, we do not agree.

I should also suggest that the suggestion by the committee receiving the material that in some way privilege can be protected is simply incorrect. Mr. Speaker, as demonstrated by the committee themselves, they went in camera to receive information and then voted to then go out of camera and release all the information that was in camera. A privilege is a privilege and it can only be effective if protected, and that privilege works to the benefit of Nova Scotians by protecting our system of government.

Mr. Speaker, we would obviously ask you to consider this matter and make a ruling.

MR. SPEAKER: I will take the matter under advisement and report again back to the House as soon as possible.

The honourable member for Clare.

MR. WAYNE GAUDET: Mr. Speaker, I rise today on a point of personal privilege. Much like my colleagues, I believe that my rights as a member have been interfered with. A former Minister of the Crown has refused to answer several questions posed to him during a meeting of the Legislature's Standing Committee on Public Accounts. Much like the power of the House and its committees, to request the production of documents, the House and its committees also have the power to ask questions without limitations to any witness before them.

As Joseph Maingot states in his text, Parliamentary Privilege in Canada, which our Chief Legislative Counsel, Gordon Hebb, has quoted on several occasions, "A committee is not restricted in the scope of questions it can pose and a witness must answer all questions put to him . . ." Furthermore, Derek Lee, who our Chief Legislative Counsel has also referenced on several occasions, states in his text, The Power of Parliamentary Houses to Send for Persons, Papers and Records, that a witness, ". . . is bound to answer all questions which a committee sees fit to put to him . . . any refusal or failure to answer

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a question may be treated as a contempt and punished by the House . . ." Derek Lee goes on to say:

"A witness cannot excuse himself . . . on the following grounds,

a) that he or she has taken an oath not to disclose the matter about which he or she must testify;

b) that the matter was a privileged communication to her or him . . ."

One last important reference to procedural text is from Robert Merleau's text, House of Commons Procedure and Practice which states, "A witness may object to a question asked by an individual committee member. However, if the committee agrees that the question be put to the witness, he or she is obliged to reply."

Mr. Speaker, after Ernie Fage refused to answer questions during the March 8th meeting of . . .

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. If you would retract and refer to the constituencies.

MR. GAUDET: Mr. Speaker, I will retract. The honourable member for Cumberland North refused to answer questions during the March 8th meeting of the Standing Committee on Public Accounts, a motion was brought forward outlining three specific questions and the questions read as follows:

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The motion states that these three questions are proper questions and that the witness will be given the opportunity to answer the questions in an in camera session. The motion was carried.

I believe the committee and its members conducted themselves in an extremely appropriate manner. During the in camera session, the witness once again refused to answer the questions, placing himself in contempt of the committee and in contempt of the House. After being asked by several reporters on the matter outside the Chamber, immediately following the meeting of the Public Accounts Committee, the former minister proceeded to provide some further answers and background into the three above mentioned questions, after refusing to answer during the committee's meeting, both in public sessions and during the in camera session. Although the answers given to the media only aid in raising further questions of concern, the member did, in fact, provide more information outside of the Chamber than he did inside. Having said that, the member showed disrespect, ill regard and contempt toward the committee, the House of Assembly and its members.

Mr. Speaker, when claims of Crown Privilege, due to claims under advice to the minister, or due to Cabinet confidentiality are made, often it is the practice to accept those claims, given reasonable circumstances. However, if the committee decides to not accept the claim, then the witness is compelled to answer the questions or be found in contempt of the committee and by extension, in contempt of this House of Assembly.

Mr. Speaker, it is through this contempt that I stand here today and ask for your favorable ruling on this prima facie case of privilege and ask that you directly proceed to dealing with my subsequent motion upon your approval. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: Thank you, honourable member. I will take that matter under advisement and report back to this Assembly.

PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the Opposition.

MR. DARRELL DEXTER: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. If it pleases the Speaker, I would like to do an introduction first. In the gallery opposite is Mr. John Hill, who is a constituent of mine and a fellow I first met on a very cold January morning as he stood collecting signatures on the petition that I'm about to table. To say that he is tenacious in ensuring that this got to the House would be an understatement. It's with great pleasure this morning that I welcome Mr. Hill to the House, and I would ask the House to give him a welcome. (Applause)

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[10:30 a.m.]

Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition. The operative clause reads:

"We, the undersigned, responsible citizens of Nova Scotia, Canada, ask our government to declare that heating fuel is a non-taxable necessity. Remove the HST on heat."

Mr. Speaker, this petition contains more than 20,000 signatures, collected from people apparently passing through my constituency, but from around the province. I have affixed my signature.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

The honourable member for Victoria-The Lakes.

MR. GERALD SAMPSON: Mr. Speaker, I would like to table a petition. The operative clause reads:

"This petition represents our strong opposition to the expansion of the Alva Construction Limited Quarry. Also included are some serious concerns relating to the present operation of this quarry."

It's from the residents of Upper Leitches Creek, to which I have affixed my signature.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

The honourable Minister of Justice.

HON. MURRAY SCOTT: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to introduce a petition that is signed by 1,164 residents of Cumberland County. The operative clause reads, "We the undersigned believe that the H.S.T. which is on heating oil, electrical heat, propane and wood used for heating should be taken off . . ." on those items necessary to life.

Mr. Speaker, I have affixed my name.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

The honourable member for Hants East.

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MR. JOHN MACDONELL: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition on behalf of the Citizen Action to Protect the Environment, the C.A.P.E. group, and concerned citizens of West Hants. The operative clause reads:

"Having just cause for concern, your petitioners respectfully request that you place an immediate moratorium on the use of Vision as a forest management tool in West Hants."

Mr. Speaker, there are approximately 740 names on this petition, and I have affixed my signature in support.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

The honourable member for Victoria-The Lakes.

MR. GERALD SAMPSON: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition. The operative clause reads, "We the undersigned are against Nova Scotia Power's proposed . . ." rate increases. "If you share this opinion please sign this petition." I have affixed my signature. There are 4,485 signatures on that petition.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

The honourable Minister of Justice.

HON. MURRAY SCOTT: Mr. Speaker, may I have the honour of an introduction?

MR. SPEAKER: Yes.

MR. SCOTT: Mr. Speaker, in your gallery, there are two police officers: Deputy Chief Dean Ruddick from Springhill and Constable Wade Keddy of the Bridgewater Police Department. These two gentlemen are here today along with other members of the Police Association, RCMP, to help support me in the launch of a seven-piece legislation that will make their jobs a lot easier and make communities safer in Nova Scotia. I ask them to rise and receive the warm welcome of the House. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: Order. Order, please.

MR. KEVIN DEVEAUX: Mr. Speaker, on a point of order. The Minister of Justice should know that this is Presenting and Reading Petitions, and if he wants to make an introduction, that's fine, but I don't think this is an opportunity for him to grandstand. If he wants to introduce his bill, introduce his bill under that order. (Interruptions)

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MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Justice.

HON. MURRAY SCOTT: Mr. Speaker, I commit to this House not to do anything that the opposite members wouldn't do. Thank you. (Interruptions)

Mr. Speaker, it's a privilege to table a petition today signed by 245 constituents of mine in the Rodney/Windham area. We signed this petition to solicit government to repave the Rodney/ Windham Hill community road. I have signed my name on this petition.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

The honourable member for Pictou West.

MR. CHARLIE PARKER: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition concerning the serious situation at Stora Enso and the economic impact it is having on eastern Nova Scotia and Cape Breton Island. The operative clause is, "WE THE UNDERSIGNED CALL UPON THE NOVA SCOTIA GOVERNMENT TO DO ALL WITHIN ITS POWER TO BRING ABOUT A SUCCESSFUL RESOLUTION TO THE CURRENT CRISIS WITH STORA-ENSO OF THE CANSO STRAIT AREA"

There are 134 signatures from residents of northern Nova Scotia on this petition, Mr. Speaker, and I have affixed my signature as well.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

The honourable member for Dartmouth South-Portland Valley.

MS. MARILYN MORE: Before I table the petition I would like to introduce two university student leaders in the west gallery. We have with us Lyndall Musselman, who is President of the Student Union of NSCAD and Chris Parsons who is External Vice-President of Kings College Student Union. I would ask the members to give them a warm welcome.

Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition Operation Groundswell in support of fair access to post-secondary education. The operative clause is; "Make ESIA benefits available to single parents who wish to enter a University program."

This petition is signed by 3,200 citizens, Mr. Speaker, and I have affixed my signature as well.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

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PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Finance.

HON. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker, it is my honour to table the 2005 Annual Report of the Halifax-Dartmouth Bridge Commission.

MR. SPEAKER: The report is tabled.

TABLING REPORTS, REGULATIONS AND OTHER PAPERS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Tourism, Culture and Heritage.

HON. JUDY STREATCH: Mr. Speaker, as Minister responsible for the Advisory Council on the Status of Women, I rise today to table the report "Healthy Balance Research Program - A Portrait of Unpaid Care in Nova Scotia."

MR. SPEAKER: The report is tabled.

STATEMENTS BY MINISTERS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Finance.

HON. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker, today I remind Nova Scotians to take part in the upcoming Canadian census to take place on May 16th. Individuals and families across Nova Scotia can expect to receive their census questionnaires between May 2nd and May 13th. I'm sure that all of us in this House are familiar with the Canadian census. After all, it has been taking place every five years for quite some time - actually since 1956. However, I'm not sure everyone understands how important it is to Nova Scotia and to every Nova Scotian.

Census data gives us a snapshot into the everyday lives of Nova Scotians. It gives us valuable social, economic, and demographic information about individuals, families and communities across the country and by jurisdiction. By using this and other relevant data we are able to access the unique strengths and needs of Nova Scotians region by region. Therefore, Mr. Speaker, this accurate, reliable information enables us to determine the right programs and services for children, seniors, and families in communities and cities across the province. Ultimately, it means being able to invest where it will count, where it will make a real difference to our province and our people.

Completing the census has even more benefits for Nova Scotia. Major federal funding payments are based, in part, on census population counts. Right now, federal transfer payments account for about 35 per cent of provincial revenues - revenues that are

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used to fund essential programs that Nova Scotians use every day such as health care, education and social services. Therefore, every person not counted in the census will result in lost dollars to the province.

Mr. Speaker, as you can appreciate, I cannot overstate the importance of every Nova Scotian taking part in this year's census. Individuals can complete census forms on paper or via the Internet and there is a toll-free help line in operation to assist people who are having trouble completing the questionnaire. The number, for members' advantage, is 1-877-594-2006 and I encourage all members to be counted. On Tuesday, May 16th, I ask Nova Scotians to please stand up and be counted. It will make a difference.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Halifax Needham on an introduction.

MS. MAUREEN MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, I'm very pleased to have an opportunity to rise in my place and introduce to the members of the Legislature, in the east gallery, people who are here from the Nova Scotia Advisory Council on the Status of Women. I would ask them to stand and receive the warm welcome of the House - Brigitte Neumann, who is their executive director; staff member, Denise Moore, who also is a former social worker student of mine I'm pleased to say; and Linda Carvery who is a member of the council board and who also is a constituent of mine. So I would ask them to rise. I believe they're here in conjunction with the tabling of the Healthy Balance Report just tabled by the minister and I would ask members to give them the warm welcome of this House. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: We welcome our visitors to the gallery today.

The honourable member for Halifax Fairview.

MR. GRAHAM STEELE: Mr. Speaker, very briefly on behalf of our caucus, I would like to associate ourselves with the remarks of the minister on the importance of the census. I'm not sure that Nova Scotians always appreciate how fundamental an accurate and comprehensive census is to good governance in this province and in this country. It is, for example, a fundamental component of federal-provincial fiscal relations. So we agree with and support the call by the minister in which he encourages all Nova Scotians to be counted.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Glace Bay.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Glace Bay): Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the Minister of Finance for providing a copy of his statement in advance. It goes without question that participation in the census is important because the data that is collected provides, as the minister has stated, a snapshot of our communities throughout the

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province and it enables governments to develop programs based on very valuable demographic information.

Mr. Speaker, its importance becomes much more significant for us here in Nova Scotia. The recent Harper Conservative federal budget indicated that equalization payments to Nova Scotia will decrease. While the Minister of Finance was not certain as to the amount on Budget Day, all indications are that this province is going to lose millions of dollars. One has to wonder whether today's statement is an all-out plea to the people of Nova Scotia to protect this provincial Progressive Conservative Government from the Harper federal government. So let us hope that the data, especially the data that's collected from seniors, will be used by the Harper Government to change the formula to reflect the fact that our population is growing older.

Mr. Speaker, it's important (Interruptions) Sometimes the truth hurts, but it's important that the former Premier of this province, Premier Hamm, felt it was very important as well. The question remains though, is it important to our new Premier? Now, perhaps our new Premier can pick up the phone and call his good friend Prime Minister Harper, and make the whole thing happen. However, in the meantime, on behalf of the Liberal caucus, I encourage all Nova Scotians to participate in the census if for no other reason than simply to shelter us from Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Tourism, Culture and Heritage.

HON. JUDY STREATCH: Mr. Speaker, on May 2nd and 3rd researchers, provincial and federal policy makers, and community leaders gathered in Halifax to discuss the effects of women's unpaid caregiving on their health and well-being. The forum launches a year of communicating the results of the five-year Healthy Balance Research Program.

Caregiving is a largely unseen activity in Canada. It's often just taken for granted. If an elderly mother or father is staying in their own home but needs help with the groceries and getting to doctor's appointments, a daughter or son is providing caregiving. If a family has a child with a severe disability who lives at home but needs 24-hour care, parents are providing caregiving in addition to performing the daily responsibilities and duties that parents do.

[10:45 a.m.]

Most of us will become closely acquainted with caregiving and with care receiving as the oldest baby boomers turn, in their later years, to their daughters, sons, friends and neighbours for support with the activities of daily living. A recent survey completed through Healthy Balance shows that one-third of Nova Scotians provide unpaid care to someone who is experiencing an illness or health-related problem.

[Page 40]

The Advisory Council on the Status of Women, the Atlantic Centre of Excellence for Women's Health, and the University of Ottawa's Institution of Population Health joined together to bring this research into the policy- making arena. Healthy Balance research shows how much more caregiving takes place in this province compared to other provinces, who provides care, and what that caregiving actually looks like in a variety of settings and communities.

Women who are traditionally under-represented in research, such as African-Canadian women, Aboriginal women, immigrant women, and women with disabilities, have played a large role in this initiative, advising on culturally- appropriate research methodology and dissemination of results.

Mr. Speaker, I tabled two of the reports this morning and I invite members to read them. One shares caregivers' personal stories, and the other is a survey report. This is Caregivers' Week in Nova Scotia, an opportunity to reflect on what can be done to support caregivers whose work is at the centre of many lives in the province.

I thank the researchers and organizers of the Healthy Balance Research Program, but I especially thank members of the Equity Reference Group, whose dedicated time and energy to this project, as well as to their work at home, has moved us forward in our awareness and understanding of women's unpaid caregiving. Some of these women are here today, Mr. Speaker. They are Denise Moore and Linda Carvery, who are members of the Equity Reference Group; Brigitte Neumann of the Advisory Council on the Status of Women; and, Sharon Reashore, Executive Director of Caregivers Nova Scotia.

I would ask them to rise and receive the warm welcome and appreciation of this House for their dedicated service. (Applause)

Thank you. Merci.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Dartmouth South-Portland Valley.

MS. MARILYN MORE: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I'm pleased to respond to the minister's statement on caregiving in Nova Scotia. I had the opportunity to attend the first day of the recent provincial forum announcing the results of the study. This was actually held in my constituency of Dartmouth South-Portland Valley.

The five-year research program results prove once again that the caregiving roles of women in this province have serious impacts on their health, their financial situation, their careers and their family life. The need for immediate action by this government to enhance the support of public policy and programs is very clear.

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My Party wants to thank all those involved with the Healthy Balance Research Program, and during Caregivers Week, in particular, thanks all caregivers across the province who are providing care to family and friends. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Halifax Clayton Park.

MS. DIANA WHALEN: Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the minister responsible for the Advisory Council on the Status of Women for providing a copy of her statement in advance.

On behalf of the Liberal caucus, I would like to first and foremost acknowledge family caregivers from one end of the province to the other. The role they play is vitally important not only to the lives of those for whom they care, but also to various government departments, and also to our society at large.

I would also like to pay tribute to all of those involved in the Healthy Balance Research Program. I certainly hope the findings in this report will find their way into government policies sooner, rather than later.

Yesterday, we heard the Speech from the Throne. While many priorities and plans were touched on, the word family caregiving did not come up during the course of that speech. This is a void and one that does need to be addressed. There are more than 85,000 caregivers in the province, who day in and day out care for loved ones because they want to. They do so with little fanfare and many times with very little support. It's time to bring caregivers to the forefront. Let us as legislators acknowledge that they need our support and the support of government and society.

The role they play has to be more integrated within government departments. Whether caregivers fall under the auspices of Community Services or whether they fall under the auspices of the Department of Health is immaterial. Their role needs to be supported and their value must be equally appreciated. Let us hope that the results from the Healthy Balance Research Program will be implemented so that this happens. Congratulations and special thanks must be extended to Denise Moore, Linda Carvery, Brigitte Neumann and Sharon Reashore, for their hard work and dedication on the issue of caregiving. It is our hope that their efforts will be supported and that this research will be used to place caregiving support high on the list of policy priorities for Nova Scotia. Thank you, Mr. Speaker. (Applause)

GOVERNMENT NOTICES OF MOTION

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Finance.

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RESOLUTION NO. 1

HON. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall:

(1) read and table the message from Her Honour the Lieutenant Governor, transmitting the Estimates of Sums required for the service of the province for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2007, for the consideration of this House;

(2) table the Estimate Books;

(3) table the Crown Corporation business plans;

(4) table the Estimate and Crown Corporation business plan resolutions;

(5) deliver my Budget Speech; and

(6) move that the Estimates of Sums required for the service of the province, for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2007, being Supply to be granted to Her Majesty, and the Crown Corporation business plans be referred to the Committee of the Whole House on Supply.

Mr. Speaker, for the information of the House, the budget will be presented on Tuesday, May 9th of next week.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable Premier.

RESOLUTION NO. 2

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

Whereas Sidney Crosby became the youngest player in NHL history to break the 100 point scoring mark this Spring, finishing the regular season with 102 points, sixth place in league scoring; and

Whereas luckily for Crosby fans, this hockey phenom and his team will be coming to the Halifax Metro Centre when the Pittsburgh Penguins play the New York Islanders on September 19th in an exhibition game; and

[Page 43]

Whereas Sidney Crosby has used the time since the regular season to gear up for his second season as a member of Team Canada at the world hockey championship, which begins today, May 5th;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate our local hockey hero, Sidney Crosby, on his tremendous success during his first NHL season and wish he and Team Canada the best of luck as they compete for the world title.

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 Environment and Labour.

RESOLUTION NO. 3

HON. CAROLYN BOLIVAR-GETSON: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas last Friday, April 28th, we joined together on the grounds of Province House, in a ceremony to commemorate those who have died as a result of workplace accident or illness in this province; and

Whereas April 28th is designated throughout Canada as a Day of Mourning for workers killed or injured on the job; and

Whereas there were 23 workers killed because of workplace accidents and illnesses in Nova Scotia in 2005;

Therefore be it resolved that the Department of Environment and Labour continue to work with our partners and with employees and employers to create safe working environments and to reduce occupational injury and illness.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

[Page 44]

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.

RESOLUTION NO. 4

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

Whereas a volunteer group of citizens is working hard to bring the Shubenacadie Canal and waterway back to life; and

Whereas the Shubenacadie Canal Commission has done a stellar job working with stakeholders to promote its vision for this historic waterway; and

Whereas the commission recently held a successful forum to engage communities and other partners in this process; and

Mr. Speaker, I would point out that that waterway forum was held at the East Hants Rural High School last Saturday.

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank members of the Shubenacadie Canal Commission for their contribution to this important project.

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 45]

The honourable Minister of African Nova Scotian Affairs.

RESOLUTION NO. 5

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

Whereas on Saturday, April 29th, Dr. Joyce Ross' career dedication to community and children was recognized. The East Preston native received the national Harry Jerome Award for community service. The Harry Jerome Award recognizes the outstanding achievements of African Canadians; and

Whereas for three decades Joyce Ross was the Executive Director of the East Preston Day Care Centre, a facility she helped found. Under her direction, the centre has been recognized by many institutions for its innovative initiatives and excellence in child care; and

Whereas although Dr. Ross has officially retired from full-time work, she remains active. She is a licentiate in her church, and ministers to inmates in prisons across the province;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House join me in congratulating Dr. Joyce Ross on winning the Harry Jerome Award for community service.

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.

RESOLUTION NO. 6

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

[Page 46]

Whereas for 84 years, the Nova Scotia 4-H Program has taught young people exceptional life skills that help them to become responsible, confident and community-minded citizens; and

Whereas this Friday and Saturday, 300 4-H members and their families will participate in the annual 4-H Weekend at the Nova Scotia Agricultural College in Bible Hill; and

Whereas this is a superb opportunity for 4-H members to participate in challenging events and demonstrations;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate all the participants of the 4-H Weekend, and wish them the best of luck.

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 Economic Development.

RESOLUTION NO. 7

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

Whereas Maritime Travel is Nova Scotia's largest travel agency, with offices across Canada; and

Whereas Maritime Travel's Chief Executive Officer, Rob Dexter, will be inducted into Nova Scotia's Junior Achievement Business Hall of Fame on June 1st; and

Whereas Mr. Dexter, besides being CEO for Maritime Travel, is also Chair of the Board of Directors of Empire Company Limited;

[Page 47]

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House recognize the immense business talent of Rob Dexter, and extend to him our congratulations on his induction into Nova Scotia's Junior Achievement Business Hall of Fame.

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 Environment and Labour.

RESOLUTION NO. 8

HON. CAROLYN BOLIVAR-GETSON: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas the goal of the Occupational Health and Safety Division of Nova Scotia Environment and Labour is to improve health and safety in the workplace; and

Whereas the week of April 30th through May 6th has been designated as North American Occupational Safety and Health Week all across the continent, with this year's theme being "review, refresh and revitalize"; and

Whereas North American Occupational Safety and Health Week is intended to increase understanding and raise awareness of occupational health and safety issues among employees, employers and the public;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House take note of the North American Occupational Safety and Health Week flag flying this week at Province House, and for all members to take up the cause of creating workplace health and safety awareness.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

[Page 48]

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.

RESOLUTION NO. 9

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

Whereas Dick Huggard's involvement and contribution to the agricultural industry began by working on the home farm and continues today in retirement with his participation with many organizations; and

Whereas Mr. Huggard's career with the Department of Agriculture and Marketing began as a livestock fieldman and continued for 36 years up through the department to the position of deputy minister; and

Whereas Mr. Huggard spent time early in his career lecturing in Animal Science at the NSAC and was always promoting and recommending the NSAC to young people interested in studying science;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Mr. Huggard, a graduate himself of the NSAC, on receiving an honorary doctorate during the convocation ceremony at the NSAC on Friday, May 5th, 2006.

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 49]

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Natural Resources.

RESOLUTION NO. 10

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

Whereas May 8th to May 14th is National Mining Week in Canada and;

Whereas mining plays a vital role here in Nova Scotia, generating hundreds of millions of dollars in economic activity through extraction and secondary processing and;

Whereas the positive benefits of mining, the jobs, the training and skills development, and business opportunities, support the livelihoods of many Nova Scotian families;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House join in the celebration of National Mining Week.

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.

[11:00 a.m.]

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Finance.

RESOLUTION NO. 11

HON. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker, I introduce this resolution as Minister responsible for the Securities Commission.

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

[Page 50]

Whereas it is very important for all Nova Scotia youth to learn about the importance of saving and investing money for their future and;

Whereas more than 1,048 Nova Scotia high school students participated this year in the Test your Financial IQ contest sponsored by the Canadian Securities Administrators, representing security regulators across Canada and;

Whereas the winner of a $750 Nova Scotia prize is 16 year old Alyssa Mitchell, a student at Parkview Education Centre in Bridgewater;

Therefore be it resolved that the House congratulate Alyssa as a fine example of young people in Nova Scotia who clearly understand the need for saving and investing for their own future and the future of the province.

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.

INTRODUCTION OF BILLS

Bill No. 1 - Entitled an Act to Combat the Production and Use of Illegal Drugs. (Hon. Murray Scott)

Bill No. 2 - Entitled an Act to Make Communities and Neighbourhoods Safer. (Mr. Kevin Deveaux)

Bill No. 3 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 222 of the Revised Statutes of 1989. The Industrial Development Act. (Mr. Manning MacDonald)

Bill No. 4 - Entitled an Act to Make Communities and Neighbourhoods Safer. (Hon. Murray Scott)

Bill No. 5 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 1 of the Acts of 1995-96. The Education Act. (Mr. Darrell Dexter)

[Page 51]

Bill No. 6 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 4 of the Acts of 1991. The Members and Public Employees Disclosure Act. (Mr. Michel Samson)

Bill No. 7 - Entitled an Act Respecting a Memorial Day to Honour Police and Peace Officers. (Hon. Murray Scott)

Bill No. 8 - Entitled an Act to Address the Historic Injustice Committed Against the People of Africville. (Ms. Maureen MacDonald)

Bill No. 9 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 380 of the Revised Statutes of 1989. The Public Utilities Act. (Mr. Manning MacDonald)

Bill No. 10 - Entitled an Act Respecting the Profits of Criminal Notoriety. (Hon. Murray Scott)

Bill No. 11 - Entitled an Act to Enforce a Moratorium on Strip Mines in Cape Breton. (Mr. Frank Corbett)

Bill No. 12 - Entitled an Act to Ensure Fairness in Fees Collected by the Government of Nova Scotia. (Mr. Michel Samson)

Bill No. 13 - Entitled an Act Respecting the Administration of Justice. (Hon. Murray Scott)

Bill No. 14 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 179 of the Revised Statutes of 1989. The Forests Act. (Mr. John MacDonell)

Bill No. 15 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 188 of the Revised Statues of 1989. The Government Purchases Act. (Mr. Michel Samson)

Bill No. 16 - Entitled an Act to Protect the Personal Information of Nova Scotians from Disclosure Outside Canada. (Hon. Murray Scott)

Bill No. 17 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 2 of the Acts of 1991. The Energy-efficiency Appliances Act. (Ms. Joan Massey)

Bill No. 18 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 365 of the Revised Statutes of 1989. The Provincial Finance Act. (Mr. Michel Samson)

Bill No. 19 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 505 of the Revised Statutes of 1989. The Wills Act. (Hon. Murray Scott)

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Bill No. 20 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 18 of the Acts of 1998. The Municipal Government Act. (Mr. Howard Epstein)

Bill No. 21 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 27 of the Acts of 1998. The Wilderness Areas Protection Act. (Ms. Michele Raymond)

[11:15 a.m.]

Bill No. 22 - Entitled an Act to Authorize the Village of Pugwash to Make Grants or Contributions to Certain Organizations. (Mr. Ernest Fage)

Bill No. 23 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 27 of the Acts of 2000. The Employment Support and Income Assistance Act. (Ms. Marilyn More)

Bill No. 24 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 23 of the Revised Statutes of 1989. The Assessment Act. (Mr. Graham Steele)

Bill No. 25 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 497 of the Revised Statutes of 1989. The Volunteer Services Act. (Mr. David Wilson, Sackville-Cobequid)

Bill No. 26 - Entitled an Act Respecting The Maritime Conservatory of Music and the Maritime Conservatory of Performing Arts Society. (Mr. Howard Epstein)

Bill No. 27 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 217 of the Revised Statutes of 1989. The Income Tax Act. (Mr. William Estabrooks)

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

NOTICES OF MOTION

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

MR. DARRELL DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, if I may, I would like to make a couple introductions before I read the resolution. In the west gallery today we have a number of people who are here who are particularly concerned with early childhood education and childcare. I would like to introduce some of them if I may. Heather Hansen-Dunbar and her daughter, Danielle, are here this morning from Kids R Kids; Margo Kirk from the Childcare Advocacy Association of Nova Scotia; Paulette Sadoway from the Canadian Labour Congress; Michelle Cohen from CUPE; John McCracken, also from CUPE; and Kerry Melsom of the Nova Scotia Childcare Association. I would ask the House to welcome them this morning as they review the proceedings of the House. (Applause)

[Page 53]

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

RESOLUTION NO. 12

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

Whereas in 2005 Nova Scotia signed a five-year agreement with the Government of Canada to provide high quality accessible childcare; and

Whereas this agreement was terminated by the new federal government; and

Whereas Nova Scotian families require access to high quality childcare to undertake work and other family obligations;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature urge the federal government to provide the multi-year funding necessary for parents in Nova Scotia to have real choices in childcare and early childhood education.

Mr. Speaker, I request waive 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. 13

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

Whereas on Sunday, May 7, 2006, Nova Scotians and all Canadians will mark the 61st Anniversary of the end of the Battle of the Atlantic; and

[Page 54]

Whereas the Royal Canadian Navy and the Merchant Navy made nearly 26,000 safe crossings of the North Atlantic, carrying over 181 million tons of cargo which helped lead to the defeat of Nazi tyranny; and

Whereas each year the Battle of the Atlantic is remembered throughout Nova Scotia and at the Halifax Sailors Memorial, a great granite cross of sacrifice inscribed with the names of 3,257 Canadian men and women who were buried at sea;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House take time to remember those who paid the ultimate sacrifice during the longest battle of World War II, the Battle of the Atlantic.

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.

RESOLUTION NO. 14

HON. BROOKE TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the honourable member for Truro-Bible Hill, the Minister of Education, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Deuville's Rink in Salmon River, Colchester County, is the only Nova Scotia arena left in the Kraft Hockeyville Search for Canada's most spirited hockey community; and

Whereas Deuville's Rink is competing against more than 20 other rinks across Canada, including the Miramichi and Plaster Rock in New Brunswick, and Charlottetown and O'Leary, P.E.I.; and

Whereas Deuville's Rink's next test will come on June 6th at 8:00 p.m. when CBC Television will hold a vote to narrow the 25 competitors to a short list of 10 with the final vote for Hockeyville to be held on June 11th at 8:00 p.m.;

[Page 55]

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate Deuville's Rink for making it to the final rounds of the Hockeyville Search and to offer their support to Deuville'sRink and the community during the final phase of Hockeyville's vote.

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 Needham.

RESOLUTION NO. 15

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

Whereas the many loyal listeners of CBC Radio's Information Morning tune in regularly to start their day off right with insightful interviews, collegial banter, and the often self-deprecating humour of the show's hosts; and

Whereas Information Morning listeners surely attribute their loyalty and love for this program to the on-air personalities who are a constant reminder of the high quality of public broadcasting; and

Whereas Don Connolly of Information Morning exemplifies this excellence as the consummate radio host, combining thorough knowledge of a vast array of topics, an ability to ask the penetrating questions, but always respectfully, and the personal grace to see humour and irony in both the common and the uncommon;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate Don Connolly of CBC Radio Halifax's Information Morning on the occasion of 30 years of exemplary public broadcasting for the listening audience.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 56]

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 West.

MR. LEO GLAVINE: Mr. Speaker, first of all I would like to make an introduction. I'd like to bring your attention to the west gallery where Henry Dorey, from my constituency, a well-respected member of the off-reserve Aboriginal community, well known for his cultural activities, is along with his son, Kevin, and grandson Nathaniel. I would like for the House to give them a warm welcome. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Kings West.

RESOLUTION NO. 16

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

Whereas the non-profit Annapolis Valley Work Activity Society has reached its 20th year of service to the community; and

Whereas the AVWAS has reached into the community to assist people in developing the necessary skills needed for the modern workplace; and

Whereas the Annapolis Valley Work Activity Society has helped the community, enabling individuals and families to overcome employment obstacles and improve their lives, because of the commitment that has been made by the staff and volunteer board who give so generously;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House acknowledge the contributions the Annapolis Valley Work Activity Society has made to the community, and congratulate the staff and board as they celebrate 20 years of service.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

[Page 57]

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 Deputy Premier.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, it's my pleasure and my honour this morning to introduce to you, and to members of the House ,a young gentleman, aged four, in your gallery this morning, Colton Lyon. Colton saved his mother from a burning house back in February of this year, and by his actions he not only saved his mother but he has accorded himself a great deal of fame. With Colton this morning is Shelley Lyon, his mother; Ralph Lyon, his grand-uncle; Lillian Lyon, his great-grandmother; Rebecca Layton, an aunt; Cayle Layton, an uncle; Zoe Layton, a cousin; - and the very, very youngest member in the gallery - and Gary Layton, who is his grandfather.

Mr. Speaker, I'd like to read a resolution after the House has welcomed Colton to this House, along with his family. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Deputy Premier.

RESOLUTION NO. 17

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

Whereas Colton Lyon, who is all of four years old, saved his mother from a burning house on the afternoon of February 25, 2006; and

Whereas Shelley Lyon was exhausted from a surgical operation that morning and was in a deep sleep on the sofa in the living room where Colton was watching TV; and

Whereas Colton exhibited the courage of a true hero in ensuring his mother's safe departure from the burning home - the slight injuries that Ms. Lyon incurred could have been a lot worse had it not been for the valiant efforts of Colton;

Therefore be it resolved by the Members of the Legislative Assembly of Nova Scotia that Colton Lyon be recognized for having exhibited knowledge beyond his years in assessing the situation and instinctively acting to rescue his mother from the burning home. This act of bravery is truly worthy of our respect and admiration.

[Page 58]

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 favor of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

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

RESOLUTION NO. 18

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

Whereas 406 Squadron has been an important air squadron in the Canadian Air Force dating back to the Second World War; and

Whereas 406 Squadron has been located at 12 Wing Shearwater as an operational training squadron first for the CH-124 Sea King and now for the soon to arrive CH-148 Cyclone; and

Whereas on May 10th a plaque will be dedicated to 406 Squadron on the 65th Anniversary of the squadron at the Shearwater Aviation Museum;

Therefore be it resolved that this House recognize the historic and current roles of 406 Squadron at 12 Wing Shearwater on its 65th Anniversary and wish all the best to those organizing the plaque dedication on May 10th at the Shearwater Aviation Museum.

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 favor of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

[Page 59]

The motion is carried.

[11:30 a.m.]

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Clare.

RESOLUTION NO. 19

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

Whereas the 35th Annual Juno Awards were held here in Halifax on April 3rd, 2006; and

Whereas these awards are presented to the best that Canadian music has to offer, in a wide variety of categories and;

Whereas Nova Scotians like Matt Mays, El Torpedo, Buck 65 and George Canyon, were nominated for their outstanding contribution to Canadian music and songwriting;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House of Assembly acknowledge the hard work and dedication by all in making this the best Juno Awards ever and recognize our East Coast musicians' great achievements.

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 favor of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Premier.

RESOLUTION NO. 20

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

[Page 60]

Whereas Terry Fox's Marathon is in itself an inspiration but also inspires some amazing feats by amazing people like Victor Cormier; and

Whereas for 22 years, Victor Cormier of Belle Cote canvassed door-to-door for cancer research, raising more than $100,000 before he passed away last week; and

Whereas this former RCMP Sergeant and Navy Veteran, who was diagnosed with cancer just two years ago, had also lost his first wife and a child to the disease;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House salute this local hero who said just last year to the Chronicle Herald: "My purpose in life is to live my life with purpose.", and he did just that.

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 favor of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

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

RESOLUTION NO. 21

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

Whereas workers at the Highland Fisheries plant in Glace Bay have been locked out by their employer Highland Fisheries since March 13th and;

Whereas Highland Fisheries is owned by Clearwater, a global leader in harvesting, processing and distribution of fish products who are demanding concessions of $2. 25 an hour from the long- term employees in this plant; and

Whereas during the 1994 negotiations on agreement for internal trade, the Province of Nova Scotia Liberal Government of the day could have fought for concessions equivalent to those gained by Newfoundland and Labrador that would

[Page 61]

require the processing of fish landed in Nova Scotia to be processed in Nova Scotia plants;

Therefore be it resolved that this government remind the owners of Clearwater that the fish in our oceans belong to the people of Nova Scotia and should be harvested to the benefit of the people of Nova Scotia and urge Clearwater to return to the bargaining table to end this lockout.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Victoria-The lakes.

RESOLUTION NO. 22

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

Whereas Raylene Cantwell, the daughter of Raymond and Anne Cantwell of Boularderie won the Frank H. Sobeys Award of Excellence in Business and;

Whereas Raylene is a third year student at Cape Breton University majoring in Accounting and;

Whereas Raylene received her $10,000 award on March 16, 2006 at a presentation ceremony held at Crombie House in Pictou.

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Raylene on her accomplishments and wish her every success on her journey to attain her CA designation.

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 favor of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

[Page 62]

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Finance.

RESOLUTION NO. 23

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

Whereas Sherry Ritcey, who helped establish the sport of hockey for women in Lunenburg, has been recognized by the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto, after being named the Royal Bank of Canada's hockey leader for Nova Scotia; and

Whereas Sherry is one of 13 individuals from across Canada to receive an authentic Team Canada jersey from the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin, Italy; and

Whereas Sherry, for being recognized by the Royal Bank of Canada, made it possible for $10,000 worth of minor hockey gear to be donated to the Lunenburg Minor Hockey Association in Sherry's name;

Therefore be it resolved that Sherry Ritcey be recognized by the members of the Nova Scotia Legislature for her dedicated community spirit and driving force in having the game of hockey, from a Lunenburg perspective, being placed on the national stage and for her recognition by Canada's Hockey Hall of Fame.

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 Hants East.

RESOLUTION NO. 24

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

[Page 63]

Whereas volunteers are the heart and soul of communities; and

Whereas every year each municipality recognizes volunteers who have contributed above and beyond the call of duty; and

Whereas on April 18, 2006, the Municipality of East Hants recognized Ms. Bernice Donaldson as its provincial volunteer representative;

Therefore be it resolved that this House of Assembly congratulate Ms. Donaldson on her selection as the Municipality of East Hants provincial volunteer representative.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has ben 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 Victoria-The Lakes.

RESOLUTION NO. 25

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

Whereas Katie Phillips is a sea cadet of Corps K147 Baddeck, and is the daughter of Brian and Connie Phillips of Baddeck; and

Whereas Katie won first prize in the intermediate age group in Nova Scotia for her Remembrance Day poster, and was presented with the Nova Scotia/Nunavut Command Certificate and a cheque; and

Whereas her drawing has been sent to the Dominion Command to be entered in the Canada-wide competition, a first for a student from Baddeck;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Katie Phillips on her accomplishment and wish her every success on her quest to be an animation artist specializing in Japanese animation.

[Page 64]

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has ben 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 Shelburne.

RESOLUTION NO. 26

MR. CECIL O'DONNELL: Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas the Port of Shelburne is in the early stages of a proposed $12 million expansion; and

Whereas the Shelburne Port Authority is leading the wharf's proposed expansion; and

Whereas the study and business plan completed last year identified new customers, while also identifying the necessary work required so that more than one ship at a time could have access to the Port of Shelburne;

Therefore be it resolved that all MLAs in the House of Assembly recognize the leadership being demonstrated by the Shelburne Port Authority, as improvements such as an additional 100 metres of wharf frontage and a deeper draft through one-time dredging are contemplated, toward making the Port of Shelburne a driving engine for the economy in southwestern Nova Scotia.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

[Page 65]

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Dartmouth East.

RESOLUTION NO. 27

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

Whereas on April 22, 2006, I had the opportunity to participate in Revolution '06, the first annual pledge-driven, day-long, spinning fundraiser to support the Dartmouth General Hospital and their hopes to purchase a new 64-slice CT scanner; and

Whereas the Dartmouth General Hospital has been utilizing a 1-slice scanner for several years now and are in need of a more state-of-the-art, efficient and less intrusive diagnostic tool; and

Whereas through Revolution '06, $30,000 was raised in support of the Dartmouth General Hospital Foundation CT Scanner Campaign;

Therefore be it resolved that this Legislative Assembly recognize all of the hard work put forth in this year's event by the event's organizers, Nubody's Fitness Centre, and also by all those participants involved. Congratulations and thanks are extended to all of those who took part.

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 66]

The honourable member for Digby-Annapolis.

RESOLUTION NO. 28

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

Whereas on November 20, 2005, 14 year old Kaitlin Ann-Grace Saulnier exhibited outstanding bravery and courage in the face of extreme danger by phoning the 911 emergency service line before jumping out of a second story window while her house was ablaze; and

Whereas unfortunately Kaitlin lost her grandfather, Warren Cromwell, that morning when he could not get out of the house in time and succumbed to smoke inhalation; and

Whereas due to the bravery of Kaitlin Ann-Grace Saulnier and the training she received at the local Southville Volunteer Fire Department, she was able to save her own life and save the family home as well;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of the House of Assembly congratulate Kaitlin Ann-Grace Saulnier for bravery in the face of danger, honour the memory of her grandfather, Warren Cromwell, and congratulate fire departments and their volunteers around this province for their continued support in all of our communities.

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 Centre.

RESOLUTION NO. 29

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

[Page 67]

Whereas two musical friends and neighbours, Scotch Hill's Dave Gunning and Salt Springs' J.D. Fortune will take the stage at the Halifax Metro Centre May 9th; and

Whereas Dave Gunning will be the opening act for veteran rockers INXS at the sold out concert; and

Whereas Dave Gunning and J.D. Fortune grew up together in Pictou County and supported each other's musical careers over the years, making this concert a full-circle event for both of these local artists;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Dave Gunning and wish him luck as the opening act for his old friend and lead singer, J.D. Fortune of INXS.

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. 30

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

Whereas the nation of modern Greece has made a long journey spanning more than 125 years to its independence; and

Whereas many individual citizens of Greece have since then undertaken the voyage from Greece so that some 2,000 persons of Greek origin now consider this other maritime corner of the world to be home; and

Whereas the Greek Orthodox community of Halifax has built St. George's Church on the shores of the Northwest Arm and for more than 20 years has invited many thousands of Haligonians to celebrate the beginning of Summer each year at the Greek Festival;

[Page 68]

Therefore be it resolved that this House commend and thank the Greek Orthodox community of St. George's for its creativity, its generous initiative, its dedication to this province and extend all best wishes for the 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.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Glace Bay.

RESOLUTION NO. 31

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

Whereas Mr. Tom McPherson of Glace Bay is the latest recipient of the Carl (Campy) Crawford Award, an award in honour of the first Black municipal police officer east of Montreal when he joined the Sydney Police Force; and

Whereas this award is presented to someone who exemplifies leadership and commitment to justice, fairness, volunteerism, sportsmanship and a quality in their community; and

Whereas Mr. McPherson is involved in numerous community initiatives, including support of Glace Bay Elementary School's Annual Christmas Dinner, donations of books and he's personally helped numerous sick children with money for medicine and travel expenses, spearheaded efforts to rebuild homes destroyed by fire and was instrumental in helping raise money for the Cape Breton Regional Police Canine Unit;

Therefore be it resolved the members of this House congratulate Mr. Tom McPherson for being the recipient of the Carl (Campy) Crawford Award and commend him on his commitment and leadership to the community of Glace Bay.

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

[Page 69]

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 Cumberland North.

RESOLUTION NO. 32

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

Whereas Tidnish River writer Harry Thurston was recognized for editing "The Sea's Voice: An Anthology of Atlantic Canadian Nature Writing" at this year's Atlantic Book Awards held in Dartmouth last month; and

Whereas Harry Thurston's book was short-listed and runner-up in this year's competition for the Best Atlantic Book Published category; and

Whereas not only is Harry Thurston a freelance journalist and a playwright, he has published nine non-fiction books and his latest poetry publication, A Ship Portrait, has been nominated for this year's Atlantic Poetry prize;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Harry Thurston on his recent recognition and wish him the best of luck in his future publications.

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.

[Page 70]

RESOLUTION NO. 33

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

Whereas the state of rural roads in this province has continued to deteriorate; and

Whereas the infrastructure deficit to bring all roads and bridges up to acceptable standards has increased from $3.5 billion to, today, over $4 billion; and

Whereas drivers are paying high repair costs to their vehicles and economic development opportunities are being lost;

Therefore be it resolved that this Nova Scotia Legislature condemn this government for the unacceptable record on rural roads and encourage them to start investing in the rural infrastructure of this province.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[11:45 a.m.]

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

Is it agreed?

I hear several Noes.

The noticed is tabled.

The honourable member for Preston.

RESOLUTION NO. 34

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

Whereas the Lake Echo Fellowship Baptist Church had outgrown its current space and formed a working committee to explore options for an expansion; and

Whereas over a three-year period the working committee organized a Quick Build project and on September 5, 2006, dozens of volunteers from all across the country built a 9,000-square-foot addition to the church in only one week; and

[Page 71]

Whereas the grand-opening service was held on April 9, 2006, to celebrate this amazing feat;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House of Assembly congratulate Pastor Frank Kohler and the members of the Lake Echo Fellowship Baptist Church on the expansion and for this amazing volunteer effort.

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 Finance.

RESOLUTION NO. 35

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

Whereas Lunenburg County is very fortunate to have many volunteers who contribute numerous hours to the benefit of their community; and

Whereas the Town of Lunenburg with a population of 2,600 residents has over 60 volunteer organizations contributing to the well-being of the town; and

Whereas the Town of Lunenburg has been recognized for the tremendous contribution of its volunteers and has been awarded the 2006 Model Volunteer Community Award by Recreation Nova Scotia;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of the House of Assembly congratulate the Town of Lunenburg on receiving the 2006 Model Volunteer Community Award and thank the many volunteers who give so freely of their time to help others.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

[Page 72]

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 Dartmouth South-Portland Valley.

RESOLUTION NO. 36

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

Whereas Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Halifax is one of many non-profit agencies providing essential programs and services for the youth of our community; and

Whereas the 30th Bowl for Kids Sake raised $250,000 - exceeding their ambitious goal by $20,000 - for the 2006 campaign; and

Whereas this funding will support all aspects of mentoring programming between adults and teens with children and youth within the Halifax Regional Municipality;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia House of Assembly congratulate Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Halifax for their outstanding fundraising results and thank all who contribute time, energy, money and caring to support the work of this highly respected community organization.

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.

[Page 73]

RESOLUTION NO. 37

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 Kinsmen Club of Sydney has given exemplary volunteer service in the Sydney area for many years; and

Whereas Sydney Kinsmen for over 70 years have contributed much in service to their fellow citizens in making the Sydney area a better place to live; and

Whereas the Kinsmen Club of Sydney will celebrate 70 years of service to the Sydney community on June 1, 2006;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of the House of Assembly congratulate the Kinsmen Club of Sydney, its members past and present, for their tremendous achievement over the years and wish them well in the future.

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 East.

RESOLUTION NO. 38

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

Whereas Little Harbour athlete Amy Baird, won the top offensive award in women's basketball at last month's second annual Holland Hurricanes Awards Banquet; and

Whereas the banquet was held in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, at Holland College; and

[Page 74]

Whereas the awards are presented to exceptional athletes like Amy Baird, who work hard and are successful in their chosen sport;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Amy Baird on her recent award and wish her continued future 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.

The honourable member for Halifax Fairview.

RESOLUTION NO. 39

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

Whereas the federal government has ended the practice of flying the flag on the Peace Tower at half-mast to honour members of the Canadian Armed Forced killed on duty overseas; and

Whereas the Deputy Premier of this province is one of many Nova Scotians who are urging that the flag be flown at half-mast once again as a sign of respect for the women and men who are serving their country in the forces in war and in peacekeeping; and

Whereas The ChronicleHerald has urged Nova Scotians to speak out on this issue;

Therefore be it resolved that this House respectfully requests that the federal government resume the practice of honouring members of the Canadian Forces by flying the Peace Tower Flag at half-mast, to honour those killed while serving their country overseas, in wars and in peacekeeping missions.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 75]

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 Glace Bay.

RESOLUTION NO. 40

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

Whereas Mr. William (Billy) Wilson, a lifetime member of the John Bernard Croak VC Branch of the Royal Canadian Legion in Glace Bay, was presented with the Meritorious Medal; and

Whereas this is the highest award presented to any Legion member in Canada and Mr. Wilson is most deserving of this award for his outstanding contributions to the Legion; and

Whereas Mr. Wilson is a very well respected member of both the community of Glace Bay as well as Branch 3 Legion, serving as the Public Relations Chairperson for Branch 3 for the past 15 years, as well as Membership and Entertainment Chairperson;

Therefore be it resolved that members of the House of Assembly congratulate Mr. William (Billy) Wilson for receiving the Meritorious Service Medal for his selfless contributions to both Branch 3 Legion and the community of Glace Bay.

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 76]

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Economic Development.

RESOLUTION NO. 41

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

Whereas Liverpool Firefighters Association will be honouring one of its longest-serving members; and

Whereas this year, local businessman Fred Lohnes, of Veinot's Footwear Ltd., will be celebrating 40 years of service to this volunteer organization; and

Whereas Mr. Lohnes is a community-minded person who is also a noted member of Mersey Branch 38, Royal Canadian Legion and a militia supporter, he will be honoured at this association's annual dinner scheduled for tomorrow night in Liverpool;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House send their warmest wishes to Mr. Lohnes as the Liverpool Firefighters Association celebrate four decades of his contribution to the association. Such dedication is not only beneficial to the immediate community, but to the entire community 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 Dartmouth North.

RESOLUTION NO. 42

[Page 77]

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

Whereas the school closure review process is unfair and does not take into account that community schools are also the cornerstones of our neighbourhoods; and

Whereas on March 29, 2001, the then Minister of Education stated, "closure of schools and consolidation is precisely aimed at providing better quality of education in the classroom to the students"; and

Whereas the present Minister of Education does not appear to hold the same view as his former colleague and called for a review of the school closure process;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislative Assembly congratulate all those involved in convincing the Minister of Education to review the school closure process and to thank the minister for doing the right thing.

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. 43

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

Whereas Steve Selig, whose childhood dream was to become a police officer, grew up in 16 different foster homes; and

Whereas when he was 18, he joined the Shelburne Police Department, later moved to the Liverpool Police Department, and, in 1968, joined the Halifax Police Department; and

[Page 78]

Whereas on April 11, 2006, Mr. Selig was honoured by his follow officers and presented with his retirement badge as a sergeant in the detective division of the Halifax Police Department;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House of Assembly honour Steve Selig for his years of dedicated police service to the citizens 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 Minister of Natural Resources.

RESOLUTION NO. 44

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

Whereas Pratt & Whitney Canada's Halifax operation, in the beautiful Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley, has been providing employment opportunities and economic benefits to the Province of Nova Scotia for over 30 years now; and

Whereas on March 29th of this year, this manufacturing facility, which operates around the clock seven days a week, reached a huge milestone by going an incredible three years without a lost-time work incident; and

Whereas outstanding safety and excellence in the aerospace industry is a direct result of every employee's and management's commitment;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate and thank Pratt & Whitney as they continue to succeed, achieve major accomplishments, and play a pivotal role in our provincial economy.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 79]

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. 45

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

Whereas the Atlantic Indoor Air Auditing Company informed the Cape Breton Regional Housing Authority on October 25, 2005, of the presence of asbestos in public housing units at the Terraces in Ashby, and did not inform workers or residents until April 2006; and

Whereas during renovations on the units in Ashby and Whitney Pier, workers cut holes in ceilings and roofs to replace chimneys, disturbing the insulation, therefore exposing both residents and workers to the potential dangers associated with asbestos; and

Whereas this government continues to tell residents that the risk is very low so long as the substance is not disturbed;

Therefore be it resolved that this government acknowledge that both residents and workers in these housing units in Whitney Pier and Ashby were most likely exposed to airborne asbestos while renovations were being carried out, and admit that conducting air tests six months following the construction does nothing to gauge the level of risk faced by the workers and residents.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear a No.

[Page 80]

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Digby-Annapolis.

RESOLUTION NO. 46

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

Whereas powerlifting is a major national sport and has a growing fan base the world over; and

Whereas April 8th and 9th, Chilliwack, British Columbia, hosted the 2006 Canadian Powerlifting Championships; and

Whereas Paul Gidney of Digby, Nova Scotia, shattered a longstanding Canadian record by lifting 1,617 pounds for the combination of squat, bench and dead lifts;

Therefore be it resolved that members of the House of Assembly recognize Mr. Paul Gidney and his outstanding achievements in the sport of powerlifting.

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. 47

[Page 81]

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

Whereas the Nova Scotia Agricultural College, one of the oldest centres for agricultural education and research in Canada, has evolved into an applied science university of excellence, positively impacting world agriculture and aquaculture; and

Whereas the NSAC has over 100 years of experience in educating and creating generations of leaders who go on to play significant roles in agriculture, the environment, life sciences, business and technology; and

Whereas we celebrate the NSAC and its students' achievements Friday May 5th;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate the NSAC's Class of 2006 for their accomplishments and hard work, and wish them luck in their future endeavours.

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 Sackville-Cobequid.

RESOLUTION NO. 48

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

Whereas many parents and elementary students of the 1,100 homes of Kingswood Subdivision are being stripped of their school buses and that this government does not take seriously the unequivocal safety of our students; and

[Page 82]

Whereas these students of Kingswood Elementary will be forced to walk 2.4 kilometres to school up to four times a day without proper infrastructure such as sidewalks and crosswalks; and

Whereas this government is pulling out of the $49,000 a year agreement between the school board and the Department of Education to fund the busing of these students;

Therefore be it resolved that this government continue the agreement for this service in Kingswood Subdivision and areas in similar circumstances until the proper infrastructure is in place.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[12:00 noon]

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. 49

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

Whereas the lobster fishing season opened along the Northumberland Strait on May 1st; and

Whereas increasing costs of bait, fuel, insurance and other operating costs have eaten into the profitability of many of these family enterprises; and

Whereas the Northumberland Strait Working Group is studying the reasons for recent years of low catches, especially in the western half of the Strait;

[Page 83]

Therefore be it resolved that this Nova Scotia Legislature wish our Northumberland Strait lobster fishermen a safe return to port every day and a season of good catches and good prices.

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 Dartmouth South-Portland Valley.

RESOLUTION NO. 50

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

Whereas Ruth Kraushar realized her dream of an all-service spa when the Interlude Spa opened in an historic Victorian heritage home at 58 Ochterloney Street, Dartmouth in 1976; and

Whereas this family business has expanded to become the largest spa in metro Halifax with two locations and 40 staff providing quality services to women and men; and

Whereas the Interlude Spa is widely recognized for its focus on health and wellness, the quality of its staff and services, and its customer-oriented approach;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia House of Assembly recognize the 30th Anniversary of the Interlude Spa by congratulating Ruth Kraushar; son Brent; daughter Rae; daughter-in-law Kim; and all their staff and clients, and thank them for this inspiring success story.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

[Page 84]

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.

RESOLUTION NO. 51

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

Whereas more women each year are seeking to start their own business or are entering professional careers; and

Whereas the maternity leave system in Canada does not provide income replacement for self-employed professionals and business owners so they are able to take an appropriate amount of time off to raise their children; and

Whereas Quebec has recently created a provincial maternity leave income insurance system that will ensure professional women and business owners are able to access maternity leave income replacement for their families after the birth of a child;

Therefore be it resolved that this House encourage the government to consider a made-in-Nova Scotia solution to ensure maternity leave and the income replacement required are available to self-employed women in our province.

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.

ORDERS OF THE DAY

[Page 85]

GOVERNMENT BUSINESS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call the order of business, Government Motions.

GOVERNMENT MOTIONS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I move that the adjourned debate on the Address in Reply to the Speech from the Throne be now resumed.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the Opposition.

MR. DARRELL DEXTER: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. Yesterday I had the opportunity to offer some brief comments about the Throne Speech and what it means to Nova Scotians. I highlighted some of our expectations for the future direction of this government.

This morning, I would like to talk for a few minutes about the challenges the people of our province face every day. I note that in yesterday's speech, Mr. Speaker, the government said that too many families are under stress and too many communities are under pressure. The sad reality is that this is true in large part because of the Progressive Conservatives' approach to government.

Today's families experience stress because the Progressive Conservatives forced tuition fees to exceed the national average by more than $2,200, which I will say more about later. Energy costs increased by 35 per cent or more per year, yet the government has offered no meaningful help with conservation and energy efficiency.

Families are forced to wait for treatment and medical procedures because of a shortage of trained professionals; the lack of affordable housing for seniors and Nova Scotians surviving on modest and fixed incomes, and because there is a lack of affordable transportation options available to the people of the province, particularly in rural areas, these are some of the reasons that our families are under greater stress.

As the speech notes, our communities are under greater pressure. Once again, the Progressive Conservatives' approach has been a big part of bringing that additional pressure to bear on these communities. This pressure gets exerted in many ways, such as the constant threat of permanent closure hanging over schools throughout the rural parts of our province; taking away a vital part of the infrastructure needed to build sustainable

[Page 86]

communities; through the worsening conditions of rural and secondary roads across the province that make it difficult for the efficient movement of goods and services and, of course, of people; through the lack of community-based policing in many parts of our province; through the unavailability of medical services; through locally-managed community health centres.

Mr. Speaker, I didn't enumerate these challenges or failings on the part of the government simply to be maudlin or to be partisan. As you will know, I have taken great pains to be constructive throughout the life of this minority government. You will remember that yesterday, in my initial reply to the speech, I spoke of many of the initiatives that have long been championed by our MLAs and by our caucus that were included in this speech as priorities for the current government.

I feel an obligation, Mr. Speaker, to ensure that Nova Scotians understand how it is that this government chooses to act, and on which issues it places its priority when it had the ability to act largely unchecked, as it did from 1999 to 2003. I'm sure all members of this House will permit me the latitude to address some of these issues as they arose in the context of the speech yesterday.

I am glad to see the government has decided not to fine graduates who leave this province to find employment, as was, perhaps in jest, suggested by the member for Pictou Centre a few weeks ago. I am also glad to see that this government recognizes that Nova Scotia's students are burdened with costs far above the Canadian average. It is, however, largely this government's record that has caused this burden to be so difficult for students and their families to bear by refusing to support our 11 post-secondary institutions properly, and by failing to introduce proper debt relief funds for the province.

Nova Scotia does not bear up well in comparison with other Canadian provinces when it comes to affordability of post-secondary education. In fact, we are the least affordable jurisdiction in North America in which to pursue a post-secondary education according to a recent report by the Higher Education Policy Institute. This dubious distinction is something that no Nova Scotian should take pride in, and particularly those on the government benches.

I am glad the government recognizes that many of our children fall through the cracks in the education system, cracks caused by years of underfunding and indifference by successive governments. The problem is that this government still does not know how many children fall through the cracks or, indeed, why they do so. Children who drop out of school do so after years of unmet needs.

To this day the government has refused to fully implement the SEIRC Report. You may know, Mr. Speaker, that SEIRC stands for the Special Education Implementation Review Committee. The government has preferred to apply the odd

[Page 87]

band-aid to the deep wounds in the system. As my colleague, the member for Timberlea-Prospect, has stated again and again in the House, children with special needs and their parents are left waiting for assessment and services for years. Additional guidance counselling will not solve the difficulties that begin in early childhood. We need to focus our attention on providing special education services to children from early education onwards. I am particularly disappointed that there is no mention of the worryingly high level of suspensions or bullying in our schools. Children who are being bullied can't learn, children who are suspended regularly can't learn, and this government appears to be happy to let both groups fall through the cracks.

As I said yesterday, Mr. Speaker, I am glad that this government is going to implement the NDP policy of making phys.ed. a mandatory high school credit. I note that the government botched the handling of the school fees issue last September and it will be interesting to see whether or not there will be money put aside for phys.ed. to help compensate for the loss of the fees. There was no funding made available to schools to replace the fees ban last September.

Mr. Speaker, this government purports to support Nova Scotians in their struggle with rising energy costs, but there is no mention of the Keep the Heat Program. It was a program that was designed to actually reject applications from the poorest and most vulnerable sections of society - low income seniors and people with disabilities- because they didn't consume enough electricity. What this government needs to do is to remove the HST on home heating sources and other essentials of life and give Nova Scotians a real break.

Moving one heating system in the province from oil to gas may be an improvement, but it should not constitute the core of the government's green agenda. I note, Mr. Speaker, that the Throne Speech did not once mention the Kyoto protocol. Moving from fossil fuels to renewable energy supply and undertaking a robust initiative to help Nova Scotian families conserve energy is the best way to improve Nova Scotia's dismal environmental record and, of course, also, to support working families. Promoting wind energy is a commitment in this government's blueprint and, to date, this government has done very little to support the growing wind energy sector in this province, that is besides putting wind turbines in the Come to Life ad campaign.

AN HON. MEMBER: One, only one.

MR. DEXTER: Only one, I should say a wind turbine. The government makes no mention of the e-waste legislation it promised two years ago. There is no move to increase the environmental stewardship agreements that will reduce landfill and illegal dumping in this province. The government makes hay with its drinking water strategy and yet it refuses to deliver on the immediate needs of low -income families with the cost of testing their wells.

[Page 88]

The Throne Speech speaks about assistance, "over the long term", and the health needs alone of these families dictate that more immediate assistance be offered. This is an issue of particular concern to my colleague, the member for Halifax Atlantic, and I'm sure that she will have more to say on this in the coming days. In addition, the government has taken its eye off the ball with regard to the tar ponds cleanup and now the federal government isn't sure whether it will commit to its funding of the cleanup. As the member for Cape Breton Nova has said in this House time and time again, the people of Sydney have suffered long enough. This government should make the tar ponds cleanup funding a priority for its new lobbying office in Ottawa.

Mr. Speaker, this speech identifies the need to create more information technology jobs in Nova Scotia, but spending money on excessive bonuses to senior civil servants and Crown Corporation executives will not create more IT jobs in Nova Scotia. Only properly funded economic development programs and an end to questionable loans will create IT jobs. When IT jobs are here our young people will return, they will want to come home because the only reason they left in the first place was to find well-paying jobs to pay off the mounting student debt imposed as a result of the Conservative policy of the last 8 years.

AN HON. MEMBER: Shame.

MR. SPEAKER: Will the honourable member allow a moment for an introduction?

MR DEXTER: Yes.

MR.SPEAKER: The honourable member for Dartmouth North on an introduction.

[12:15 p.m.]

MR. JERRY PYE: Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and I want to thank the honourable Leader of the Opposition for giving me this opportunity to introduce a member in the Speaker's Gallery of the Legislature.

Mr. Speaker, I want to introduce to you Mr. Trevor Zinck, who is the Chairman of the District 9 Citizen's Association and also the nominated candidate for the New Democratic Party to carry the banner for the Party in the upcoming provincial election. I also want you and the members of this Legislature to know that I have not instructed him on the decorum of this Legislature, what to say or what to do. Also with him is Alex Doran, his stepdaughter, and niece Lindsey Berringer. I would ask the House to give them a warm welcome.

[Page 89]

MR. DEXTER: I know he's anxiously awaiting the outcome of this session as well.

Mr. Speaker, as you will recall, I was mentioning the fact that many of the students who will return to Nova Scotia for IT jobs only left in the first place because of the Conservative policy with respect to post-secondary education that burdened them so heavily with debt.

Mr. Speaker, I am also amused by the fact that this government saw fit to state that it supports the arts and artists, although I would note that this term appears only once in the text of the speech. The Premier, the former Minister of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, was of course responsible for doing away within one day what it took a generation of Nova Scotia artists to build, and I'm talking about the Arts Council that was abolished just after the government took office. This government is launching an infrastructure strategy to identify priorities in capital investment. The people of Nova Scotia and, presumably, the Department of Transportation and Public Works already know the priorities. What we must do is make road priority lists public.

This government is going to consult with the people of Nova Scotia in finding a comprehensive resource strategy - I'm afraid however that this government will ignore the people it consults, as it has done on so many occasions before. I also find it troubling that this government makes no mention of offering stabilizing support in our agricultural sector. We know that this government's approach has been to offer short-term, ad hoc assistance programs that in many cases have simply delayed the decision point for farm families who are attempting to consider their future in the industry. Without a long-term plan to provide stability our agricultural sectors will lurch from crisis to crisis and our farm families will continue to suffer.

On the matter of inclusion I will note, as our caucus has done a number of times when it comes to this government's approach to the province, the lack of any meaningful role for Cape Breton envisioned in this speech. Take for example the refusal to listen to Cape Bretoners' desire for a moratorium on strip mining and their ongoing concerns about jobs, the failure of this speech to address issues of municipal equalization, issues surrounding the taxation of Nova Scotia Power facilities and the continuing challenges that are faced by the tourism industry. This government's last Throne Speech performed much the same sort of insult by omission, and Cape Bretoners, while they may have kin in the highest office of the province, will, it appears, continue to be an afterthought in this government's approach to economic and social development.

Mr. Speaker, a word on immigration. The successful implementation of the immigration strategy will not happen until the outrageous fees charged by the private company managing this program are abolished. This province should not have passports for sale. Why has the government not made a commitment to increase funding for English

[Page 90]

as a second language? If we expect immigrants to be able to settle successfully and build a life in Nova Scotia, we need to provide the appropriate supports to enable them to do so. The family support stream in Nova Scotia is too narrow to help immigrants to apply for family members to join them. This is why so many of our immigrants move on shortly after their arrival here. But there is no mention of implementing a sensible program that will send the message to people from other countries that we do in fact want them to come here and build a life here.

Mr. Speaker, our caucus is prepared to do what we can to move the government forward, to do what we can as legislators to improve the lives of Nova Scotia families. I look forward to seeing how the government addresses these challenges in the days ahead as they present their budget, as we will see how, exactly, the government intends to accomplish this agenda. I would move adjournment of the debate.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for adjournment of the debate.

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 move the House do now rise to meet again on Monday at the hour of 7:00 p.m. The House will sit from 7:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m. The order of business, following the daily routine, will be the resumption of the Address in Reply to the Speech from the Throne.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is that the House adjourn until 7:00 p.m. on Monday.

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 House stands adjourned.

[Page 91]

[The House rose at 12:22 p.m.]

[Page 92]

NOTICES OF MOTION UNDER RULE 32(3)

RESOLUTION NO. 52

By: Mr. William Estabrooks (Timberlea-Prospect)

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

Whereas Bryan and Rose Feetham of Prospect Bay celebrated 25 years of marriage on April 13, 2006, with a reception at the Royal Canadian Legion in Whites Lake; and

Whereas Bryan and Rose were joined at this celebration by friends and family members, including son David; daughter Amanda; brother Gordie; sister Ann; and Rose's mother, Louise Alchorn-Pottier; and

Whereas this legendary couple serves as an example of dedication and commitment for all of us to follow;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate Bryan and Rose Feetham on their 25 years together, with best wishes for many great years together in the future.

RESOLUTION NO. 53

By: Mr. William Estabrooks (Timberlea -Prospect)

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

Whereas the St. Margaret's Bay Ducks captured the Don Johnson Cup in the Atlantic Junior "B" Championships in Kensington, P.E.I. in April; and

Whereas the Ducks, a first-year team in the Nova Scotia Mainland Junior "B" league, provided a great quality product all Winter at the St. Margaret's Centre; and

Whereas the Ducks' organization was led by team president Tim Hill, and head coach Brian Cashen;

[Page 93]

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate the St. Margaret's Bay Ducks on their Atlantic Cup Championship.

RESOLUTION NO. 54

By: Mr. William Estabrooks (Timberlea-Prospect)

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

Whereas senior naval Leading Seaman Karen Lee Cross has retired from the Canadian Armed Forces; and

Whereas Leading Seaman Cross served with loyalty and distinction on numerous ship and shore units, becoming an essential member of the ship's office of HMCS Scotian; and

Whereas Leading Seaman Cross was recognized by her colleagues and friends at a ceremony on April 26, 2006;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate and thank Leading Seaman Karen Lee Cross for her service, with best wishes in her future endeavours.

RESOLUTION NO. 55

By: Mr. William Estabrooks (Timberlea-Prospect)

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

Whereas Mike Cashen, the Captain of the St. Margaret's Bay Ducks, captured his fourth consecutive Don Johnson Cup, emblematic of the Atlantic Junior B Championship, this Spring in Kensington, PEI; and

Whereas Mike's remarkable accomplishment consists of three championships with the Sackville Blazers and one at the Bay Ducks; and

Whereas during his junior hockey career, Mike Cashen's leadership was exemplary on and off the ice;

[Page 94]

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate Mike Cashen on his four Atlantic junior championships with best wishes of good luck in his future endeavours.

RESOLUTION NO. 56

By: Mr. William Estabrooks (Timberlea-Prospect)

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

Whereas Brookside Junior High School teacher Sheila Lamplugh has retired from the teaching profession; and

Whereas Sheila each day demonstrated her commitment to her students with her positive approach and truthful enthusiasm; and

Whereas Sheila's retirement was celebrated on April 29th at the Royal Canadian Legion in Whites Lake with numerous friends and family present, including husband Mike, and daughters Samantha and Jill;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia House of Assembly congratulate Sheila Lamplugh on her retirement with thanks for many years of service to the young people of our community.

RESOLUTION NO. 57

By: Mr. William Estabrooks (Timberlea-Prospect)

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

Whereas Sarah Rhyno of Brookside captured a bronze medal this curling season at the Canadian Junior Women's Championship in Thunder Bay; and

Whereas the Rhyno rink consisted of third Jenn Brine, second Jessica Bradford, and lead Heather Ross; and

Whereas this accomplished 19- year-old Saint Mary's University business student continues to achieve on and off the curling ice;

[Page 95]

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate Sarah Rhyno and her teammates on their bronze medals with best wishes in their future endeavours.

RESOLUTION NO. 58

By: Mr. William Estabrooks (Timberlea-Prospect)

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

Whereas legendary music teacher Mark Cuming is retiring this year from the teaching profession; and

Whereas Mark Cuming's dedication and professionalism has resulted in a quality band program for the students of Brookside Junior High School; and

Whereas this innovative and talented music teacher's example will long be remembered by his students, his colleagues, and the community;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate Mark Cuming on his retirement and thank him for his many years of valuable service.

RESOLUTION NO. 59

By: Mr. William Estabrooks (Timberlea-Prospect)

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

Whereas Stanley and Veronica Little of Terence Bay celebrated 60 years of marriage on March 5, 2006, at the Terence Bay Fire Hall; and

Whereas this memorable event was well attended by numerous family members and friends; and

Whereas Stanley's and Veronica's long-time commitment is an example for all of us to follow;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate Stanley and Veronica Little on their 60th Anniversary, with best wishes for much happiness in the future.

[Page 96]

RESOLUTION NO. 60

By: Mr. William Estabrooks (Timberlea-Prospect)

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

Whereas Brenda Bennett is retiring from the teaching profession this June; and

Whereas this legendary teacher has provided exemplary dedication; and

Whereas Brenda's commitment to her students will long be remembered by our community;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate Brenda Bennett on her retirement, with best wishes in her future endeavours.

RESOLUTION NO. 61

By: Mr. Russell MacKinnon (Cape Breton West)

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

Whereas Cape Breton's own "Forever" band, from Eskasoni, has been nominated this year at the 8th Annual Native American Music Awards, for Best Rock/Pop Recording, taking place at Hollywood, Florida in June; and

Whereas there are over 125 nominees from all over the world; and

Whereas this is the 10th nomination that Forever has received since 2003;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate and wish the members of the band, Keith Dawson, bandleader and drummer; Derek Johnson, vocals; Bernie Eagles on guitar; Stan Johnson on keys; and Peter Christmas on bass guitar, all the best at this year's Native American Music Awards.

RESOLUTION NO. 62

By: Mr. Russell MacKinnon (Cape Breton West)

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

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Whereas Erica Hopkins, the 15-year-old daughter of Florence and Douglas Hopkins of Birch Grove, Cape Breton County, applied to represent her Girl Guide group and successfully was selected among 14 other Girl Guides from across Canada for the "Swiss Experience"; and

Whereas Girl Guides began in Canada in 1910 when the first company was officially registered, and in 1917 the Canadian Government recognized the value of Guiding by passing an Act of Parliament approving the constitution of the Canadian Girl Guides Association; and

Whereas Erica is the only Girl Guide chosen from Nova Scotia and will travel to Switzerland for two weeks in August of this year;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly congratulate Erica on being chosen to represent Nova Scotia during her trip to Switzerland, and to recognize all the volunteers of Girl Guides of Canada for all their work and efforts on behalf of the Girl Guides.

RESOLUTION NO. 63

By: Mr. Russell MacKinnon (Cape Breton West)

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

Whereas the Resource Recovery Fund Board of Nova Scotia held its 8th Annual Mobius Environmental Awards in Halifax on April 27, 2006; and

Whereas the RRFB recognizes "the achievements of innovative and progressive Nova Scotians who have helped make our province a leader in waste reduction, recycling and composting"; and

Whereas this year Jodi and Scott Richards, owners of Dutch Brook Disposal Services Ltd., received the Hauler of the Year award, noting that their business diverts more than 23 tons of recyclables from the landfill each month;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly congratulate Jodi and Scott Richards for their environmental efforts on behalf of all Nova Scotians.

RESOLUTION NO. 64

By: Mr. Russell MacKinnon (Cape Breton West)

[Page 98]

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

Whereas the Esso Women's National Hockey Championships took place at Centre 200 in Sydney, and at the Canada Games Complex at Cape Breton University from March 8th to 12th this Winter; and

Whereas nine teams from across Canada are represented in this 25th Anniversary tournament with some of the best female hockey players in Canada; and

Whereas the Nova Scotia team won every game except one and is now ranked in 5th place in Canada;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly congratulate the players, the 21-person committee consisting of co-chairs, Bev Patterson and Errol Jamieson, for all their hard work and efforts to make this tournament another successful event.

RESOLUTION NO. 65

By: Mr. Russell MacKinnon (Cape Breton West)

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

Whereas the Cape Breton Regional Municipality recently presented three representatives of the Port Morien Development Association with the Gary McDonald Memorial Award for Outstanding Community Project; and

Whereas the Port Morien Development Association worked at beautifying the Village of Port Morien, which will stimulate tourism and create more business opportunities; and

Whereas the entire Village of Port Morien and Cape Breton Regional Municipality will benefit from this project;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly congratulate Ken MacDonald, Leroy and Ron Peach, Paulette MacDougall, Leonard Stephenson, Nicole Hennessey and other volunteers of the Port Morien Development Association for their hard work and tireless efforts on behalf of their community.