Assemblée Législative de la Nouvelle-Écosse

Les travaux de la Chambre ont repris le
21 septembre 2017

HALIFAX, FRIDAY, OCTOBER 28, 1994

Fifty-sixth General Assembly

Second Session

11:00 A.M.

SPEAKER

Hon. Paul MacEwan

DEPUTY SPEAKER

Mr. Gerald O’Malley

 

 

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. We will commence the daily routine at this time.

PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS

PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES

TABLING REPORTS, REGULATIONS AND OTHER PAPERS

STATEMENTS BY MINISTERS

GOVERNMENT NOTICES OF MOTION

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Human Resources.

RESOLUTION NO. 840

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

Whereas the Halifax-Cornwallis Progress Women of Excellence Awards honours women who have
excelled in their professions; and

Whereas award recipients are worthy role models for young women in our society; and

Whereas the Fifth Annual Progress Women of Excellence Awards evening raises funds to help support
the ongoing efforts of Phoenix House;

3633

 

Therefore be it resolved that this Assembly extend congratulations to Pamela Birdsall, Myrna Slater,
Marilyn Peers, Linda Hamilton, Louisa Horne, and Cheryl Gillett, the recent recipients of the Halifax-Cornwallis Progress Women of Excellence Awards for their commitment, hard work, and professionalism.

I would ask for waiver of notice, please, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: There is a request for waiver of notice which requires unanimous consent.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried. (Applause)

INTRODUCTION OF BILLS

Bill No. 115 - Entitled an Act to Reform the Environmental Laws of the Province and to
Encourage and Promote the Protection, Enhancement and Prudent Use of the Environment. (Hon.
Robert Harrison)

Bill No. 116 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 1 (1992 Supplement) of the Revised Statutes of
1989. The House of Assembly Act. (Hon. John MacEachern)

NOTICES OF MOTION

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Hants West.

RESOLUTION NO. 841

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

Whereas the Premier, his Cabinet and all Liberal members were previously scheduled to be
participating in a leadership review this weekend; and

Whereas although the Premier campaigned all summer long in an attempt to woo Liberal support
across the province, forgetting in the meantime that there were some 900,000 Nova Scotians in need of
attention, his executive decided to cancel the review; and

Whereas the Premier decided to revert to dealing with the business of all Nova Scotians by returning
to the Legislature as his second choice;

Therefore be it resolved that the Premier, in his quest for democracy, prove through the conduct of this
fall session that he is indeed working in the interest of all Nova Scotians and not just his own self-interest.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Halifax Atlantic.

RESOLUTION NO. 842

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

Whereas loyal Liberals across Nova Scotia were preparing to assemble tonight and tomorrow for an
annual meeting at which they would review their Party’s leadership; and

Whereas that great democrat, the Leader of the Nova Scotia Liberal Party, squeaked into the leadership
with support from his municipal colleagues plus the crucial backing of one Nash Brogan; and

Whereas the Liberals who placed the Premier in his seat of power, including my former opponent
Randy Ball and dozens of other mayors, wardens and councillors, have now seen the Premier’s preferred
alternative to a leadership review;

Therefore be it resolved that this House urges the Liberal Party to stop wasting its previous trust fund
money on a constitutional commission road show, and simply schedule a time and place where those who are
the source of the Premier’s power can execute their wishes regarding the dictatorial actions of his government.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Pictou Centre.

RESOLUTION NO. 843

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

Whereas the Provincial-Municipal Service Exchange plan released yesterday by the Minister of
Municipal Affairs creates significant new costs for municipal taxpayers in many areas of the province; and

Whereas consultation before the minister bringing forward her revised position has not occurred; and

Whereas taxpayers, through their elected municipal representatives, have been denied the opportunity
to provide any input into the government’s latest position on service exchange;

Therefore be it resolved that the minister identify those areas and units which are negatively impacted
and begin immediate dialogue to reach a satisfactory solution short of unreasonable tax increases.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable Leader of the New Democratic Party.

 

 

RESOLUTION NO. 844

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

Whereas Conservative and Liberal Governments have spent the last 10 years claiming they have
already begun to eliminate inequitable, Elizabethan, two-tiered social assistance; and

Whereas observers who still thought these Liberals could tell the truth reported as late as yesterday
morning that amalgamation was being imposed because its claimed savings would pay for the long-promised
one-tier social assistance system; and

Whereas legislation and financial tables presented yesterday don’t even back up the Liberal promise
of a single tier of social assistance in industrial Cape Breton by late 1995;

Therefore be it resolved that this House urges the government to explain to children and families forced
to continue living in poverty the Liberal decision to perpetuate the inequity of the two-tiered social assistance
system, forcing municipal governments to carry the recessionary load of short-term aid just when the Premier
says the property tax base is about to collapse.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley.

RESOLUTION NO. 845

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

Whereas today was to be a red letter day for Liberals gathering together to decide on the future of their
Leader; and

Whereas the Premier and his Save Our Savage Team successfully jerry-rigged the democratic process
to buy eight more months of leadership; and

Whereas . . .

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. The honourable member has the right to read his resolution. If it is out
of order, I will say so. Please allow him to continue.

MR. TAYLOR: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Whereas the Save Our Savage Team obviously has no faith that 30,000 good Liberals could not defeat
2,000 trade unionists;

Therefore be it resolved that the SOS Team immediately recruit high profile Liberals, like Randy Ball,
Walter Fitzgerald and Gloria McCluskey, to assist in saving the Premier’s hide.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Hants East.

MR. ROBERT CARRUTHERS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to
introduce to you and through you to all members of the House, members of the First Maitland Cub Pack who
are here with us today. They are here with their leaders, Mr. Baker and associate. I wonder if all members of
the House would give a warm welcome to the First Maitland Cub Pack. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Hants West.

MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I was wondering if you would take
a matter under advisement. A short time ago, during Introduction of Bills, the Minister of Education
introduced an amendment to the House of Assembly Act. I would like you to take a look at that and see
whether or not that is in order.

MR. SPEAKER: My understanding of the matter is that the bill relates to teachers employed in the
Department of Education.

MR. RUSSELL: I would ask that you take it under advisement because I don’t believe that a minister,
regardless of whether or not there is some section of an Act that applies to his particular department, can
amend an Act that belongs to some other department or some other ministry.

MR. SPEAKER: The Clerk and I will research the matter. If there is a point of order, we will report
back to the House.

The honourable member for Queens.

RESOLUTION NO. 846

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

Whereas the now member for Dartmouth South said on March 23, 1993, that he supported a working
relationship between the provincial government and municipal leaders, not unilateral action; and

Whereas the members for Cole Harbour-Eastern Passage, Sackville-Beaverbank, Timberlea-Prospect
and Preston all vehemently supported their current Leader in the Liberal Party’s fight against the creation of
a unitary government for metro during the 1993 election campaign; and

Whereas these same four members have since beaten a hasty and ignominious retreat and are now
supporting the creation of one super city for metropolitan Halifax;

Therefore be it resolved that those who spoke from one side of their mouth before May 25, 1993, and
who now speak from the other side be castigated for practicing the worst chicanery and for playing fast and
false with the people.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid.

RESOLUTION NO. 847

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

Whereas the so-called Liberal Government in this province has been notable for its stone cold silence
about Lloyd Axworthy’s social review, which would triple tuition fees and reduce federal efforts to alleviate
poverty; and

[11:15 a.m.]

Whereas Nova Scotians see Ottawa ready to turn the clock back to the dirty 20’s and 30’s, when
Maritimers either suffered exploitation for subsistence income or were forced down the road; and

Whereas a provincial government ready, willing and eager to join Lloyd Axworthy in the
impoverishment of its own citizens would not want responsibility for the consequences: still higher social
assistance;

Therefore be it resolved that this House condemns the “every man for himself - women and children
last” policy whereby the government is abandoning ship before Lloyd Axworthy fires a shot, rather than
joining a national coalition for the social and economic justice that have been hallmarks of Canadian
citizenship.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Cape Breton South.

MR. MANNING MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, through you to the members of the House I would like
to take this opportunity to introduce three distinguished members of the Cape Breton District School Board,
who are visiting Halifax this week-end, Anne MacKinnon, Peter MacKinnon and Vince Buckland. I would
like the House to welcome them in the usual way. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Kings North.

RESOLUTION NO. 848

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

Whereas the government has reneged on its election promise of community economic development,
no new taxes and 63,000 jobs for Nova Scotians; and

Whereas Liberals broke their promise to Nova Scotians on patronage, on the EH-101 contract and CFB
Cornwallis; and

Whereas as the Premier and his MLAs campaigned against municipal reform Nova Scotians should
have expected the Premier’s latest flip-flop;

Therefore be it resolved the government make one more flip-flop and reverse their casino decision.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Lunenburg.

RESOLUTION NO. 849

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

Whereas Pamela Birdsall established Birdsall Worthington Pottery Ltd. in Mahone Bay; and

Whereas Ms. Birdsall’s pottery has been shown in shows and exhibitions nationally and internationally;
and

Whereas Ms. Birdsall has served on the Nova Scotia Designer Crafts Council;

Therefore be it resolved that this Assembly extend congratulations to Pamela Birdsall for having
recently received the Halifax-Cornwallis Progress Women of Excellence Award in Arts and Culture.

I would ask, Mr. Speaker, if the House would be willing to waive notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver of notice which requires unanimous consent.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Is the House ready for the question? Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary
minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Kings West.

RESOLUTION NO. 850

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

Whereas the government has promised to create a regulatory regime for casinos which ensures the
social well-being of Nova Scotians; and

Whereas the Department of Community Services has confirmed this week, through a Freedom of
Information Act request, that no social impact study has been done on casinos by that department;

Whereas the only consistent strategy employed by this government is that it will break any promise
it makes with the people of Nova Scotia;

Therefore be it resolved that this government explain the rationale of proceeding with casinos when
it has no idea what the social impact will be on increased addiction, crime, suicides and financial ruin of
families.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member Pictou West.

RESOLUTION NO. 851

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

Whereas today marks the opening of the 1994 Nova Scotia deer hunting season; and

Whereas the Nova Scotia Safety Council is once again urging all hunters to carefully protect
themselves by wearing `hunter orange’; and

Whereas the Nova Scotia annual six week deer hunting season is worth $32 million to the province’s
economy;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this Legislature acknowledge today the importance of our
annual hunting season and also to encourage each and every hunter to exercise extreme safety as they venture
into the provincial woodlands.

I would ask, Mr. Speaker, if the House would be willing to waive notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver of notice which requires unanimous consent.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

Is the House ready for the question? Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary
minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Queens.

RESOLUTION NO. 852

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

Whereas October 23rd to October 29th is Waste Reduction Week, sponsored by the Clean Nova Scotia
Foundation; and

Whereas the purpose of this week is to highlight the waste management problem in Nova Scotia and
to introduce alternative approaches to waste management; and

Whereas the foundation challenged all citizens of Nova Scotia, including households, schools, offices,
hospitals, university, shopping malls, construction sites and municipalities to reduce waste;

Therefore be it resolved that all the citizens of Nova Scotia, from the students at St. Patrick’s-Alexandra, Elizabeth Sutherland, Oxford Street, Holly Drive and Sir Charles Tupper Schools who developed
and participated in Waste Reduction Olympics, to those taking part in the Olands Swap event on Saturday,
be congratulated and encouraged to continue these good works into the future, a future which, after all, very
much belongs especially to the young.

Mr. Speaker, I would ask for waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for waiver of notice which requires unanimous consent.

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. 853

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

Whereas on May 12, 1993, the man who is now Premier of Nova Scotia described as “tokenism” the
fact that the Conservatives largely ignore the excellent reports produced by task forces; and

Whereas the only person who would describe the Premier as humble claims that public opinion surveys
and task force reports justify the surprise imposition of metro amalgamation and abandonment of one-tiered
social assistance; and

Whereas on the casino issue, three task force reports, public opinion surveys and a wide range of expert
opinion have all come down against private, for-profit casinos in Halifax and Sydney;

Therefore be it resolved that this House reminds a humble man of his own words, that “there is a
certain tokenism in expensive and high-profile efforts to consult, when you have a Premier like Donald
Cameron.”.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Kings West.

 

 

RESOLUTION NO. 854

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

Whereas the Minister of Health yesterday smugly said that the merger of five medical institutions in
Halifax, under the QE II board, was the result of a study; and

Whereas the real question was not whether there was a study, the question was whether it is
economically sensible to initiate the merger; and

Whereas it has been suggested that costs like equalizing employee salaries and benefits associated with
the merger could reach as high as $30 million;

Therefore be it resolved that the minister address the concerns that have been raised by the QE II
hospital officials and release figures of the true cost of the metro merger seemingly designed purely for the
Queen’s visit, not for the taxpayers of Nova Scotia.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Kings North.

RESOLUTION NO. 855

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

Whereas the Mayor of Wolfville specifically wants to know why Wolfville is being treated differently
than some other communities with respect to health care; and

Whereas the Eastern Kings Memorial Hospital was the first on the minister’s hospital chopping block
for closure; and

Whereas the mayor has repeatedly requested a meeting with the Premier and is still waiting a positive
response;

Therefore be it resolved that the Premier commit today to call Wolfville Mayor Gwen Phillips at 542-5767 to set up an appointment so that he can explain to her why Wolfville is being treated differently than
other communities.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable Leader of the New Democratic Party.

RESOLUTION NO. 856

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

Whereas this month, Tearmann House in New Glasgow is marking its 10th Anniversary by
establishing a bursary for women studying how to improve the lives of abused women; and

Whereas the Tearmann Society for Battered Women has established outreach services in Pictou and
Guysborough Counties, in addition to dealing with more than 7,000 distress calls and sheltering thousands
of women and children during those 10 years; and

Whereas the work of the society, its staff and supporters is more important than ever in a world where
violence seems to flourish while family and community bonds are placed under terrible stress;

Therefore be it resolved that this House joins in commemoration of the Tearmann Society for Battered
Women and all who have been associated with Tearmann House during its first 10 years, and offers
encouragement for continued success and greater optimism in the decades ahead.

Mr. Speaker, I would ask for waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed that there be a waiver of notice?

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley.

RESOLUTION NO. 857

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

Whereas the federal-provincial Cooperation Agreement for Forestry Development is due to expire on
March 31, 1995; and

Whereas federal-provincial forest resource development agreements have been critical to improving
the productivity of Nova Scotia forest land while contributing to the economic health of many Nova Scotia
communities; and

Whereas the Minister of Natural Resources has said himself, “without a federal government
commitment to forestry development in Nova Scotia, the impact on the industry in this province would be
dramatic;”;

Therefore be it resolved that the Minister of Natural Resources immediately provide Forest Group
Management Ventures here in Nova Scotia with a detailed update on his discussions with the federal
government as to the status of the new federal forestry development agreement that can be both beneficial to
the taxpayer and to woodlot owners.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid.

RESOLUTION NO. 858

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

Whereas the Minister of Municipal Affairs has solid support from her own appointees and employees
when she claims that Cape Breton amalgamation is going very well; and

Whereas elected local representatives in Cape Breton have publicly questioned the taxation without
representation, administrative confusion and blank cheque approach to paying for that amalgamation; and

Whereas the minister yesterday sought even greater powers to dictate in Cape Breton what is decided
by local democracy everywhere else;

Therefore be it resolved that the Premier and Minister of Municipal Affairs should wait to see if their
top-down approach to Cape Breton amalgamation is really a great success before they take the same dictatorial
approach everywhere else.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Pictou West.

RESOLUTION NO. 859

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

Whereas the Minister of Education and the Minister of Municipal Affairs as well as the Premier have
both discussed their government’s approach to involving the private sector in their various initiatives; and

Whereas residents from Ingonish, Victoria County are diligently working in an attempt to ensure their
only winter industry, the Cape Smokey Ski Hill, is able to operate this winter; and

Whereas the Cape Smokey Ski Hill is a very large seasonal employer for a number of residents in
Victoria County during the winter;

Therefore be it resolved that the Minister responsible for Nova Scotia’s Economic Renewal Agency not
let this matter drag on indefinitely but instead work towards a positive solution that might involve the private
sector and in turn keep the Cape Smokey Ski Hill open while ensuring the employment of a number of
individuals for the winter of 1994-95.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Hants West.

RESOLUTION NO. 860

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

Whereas the honourable member for Dartmouth South and Premier said on March 23, 1993 that no
decisions concerning unilateral government should be made without restoring the consultative process; and

Whereas the Premier was prepared to go into this Legislature yesterday and announce the creation of
a super city without so much as a phone call to any of metro’s municipal leaders; and

Whereas a meeting between the Premier and the four municipal leaders in metro was only forced late
Wednesday evening by the Mayor of Halifax County after the mayor caught wind of the Premier’s flip-flop
from a senior bureaucrat;

Therefore be it resolved that the Premier stop enforcing the philosophy of, don’t do as I do but do as
I say, and consult with Nova Scotians before imposing unilateral action upon them.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

I wish to deliver a Speaker’s Ruling on the item raised by the honourable member for Hants West
concerning First Reading of Bills. Beauchesne’s Parliamentary Rules & Forms, 6 Edition at Chapter 16,
Proceedings on Public Bills. Paragraph 647 states, “There is no prohibition against a Minister introducing
a bill dealing with a matter not within the administrative responsibility of the particular Minister.”.

The House of Assembly Act falls under the jurisdictional responsibility of the Speaker and I certainly
have no objection to the Minister of Education introducing a bill on my behalf but he did not do that, he
introduced it on his own account. There is no prohibition against that procedure according to Beauchesne’s
Paragraph 647 and I so rule.

I have a request from the Deputy Government House Leader to revert to the order of business Tabling
Reports, Regulations and Other Papers.

[11:30 a.m.]

TABLING REPORTS, REGULATIONS AND OTHER PAPERS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Justice.

HON. WILLIAM GILLIS: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table the Annual Report of the Public Trustee
for the fiscal year ending March 31, 1994.

MR. SPEAKER: The report is tabled.

The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.

MR. ALLISTER SURETTE: Mr. Speaker, would you please call, as well, Statements by Ministers?

STATEMENTS BY MINISTERS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Natural Resources.

HON. DONALD DOWNE: Mr. Speaker, I wish to advise members of the House that today marks the
opening of the general season for deer hunting in Nova Scotia.

Mr. Speaker, today until December 3rd, thousands of Nova Scotians will enter our woods to enjoy the
great outdoors and wildlife that our province has to offer.

Mr. Speaker, it was back in 1894, 100 years ago, that white-tailed deer were introduced to Nova Scotia.
Eleven were sailed from the Province of New Brunswick and they were set free at Lake Jolly in Digby County.

I would just like to remind hunters that hunting in Nova Scotia is a privilege and not a right and should
be treated that way.

Mr. Speaker, hunters have responsibilities, responsibilities to respect the rights of private landowners
who permit hunting on their property. Property owners and hunters also have a joint responsibility to help us
enforce hunting regulations. I would like to remind all Nova Scotians that if they witness any type of illegal
activity in the woods, such as deer-jacking, I encourage them to call our special phone line at 1-800-565-2224.

Hunters also have safety responsibilities, Mr. Speaker, and I wish to remind all hunters that at all times
during the hunting season, proper precautions should be taken when carrying firearms.

Mr. Speaker, last year, in this House, I called upon hunters to work harder to eliminate accidents in
our woods. Well, Mr. Speaker, they heard my call. My department estimates that 1.2 million recreational
hours of all types of hunting that took place last year, and I am pleased to report that there were only two
personal injuries. While this achievement is significant, we must not stop until we have an accident-free
hunting season.

Mr. Speaker, as members, we all recall, last year, our government introduced what we call the Buck
Law. This law permits hunters to take only male deer during the season. Mr. Speaker, this law remains in
effect this year as well. This is a measure that is necessary to help us manage and conserve the province’s
declining deer population. With this law, hunters must be sure to aim only at the deer with visible antlers.
Conservation of our deer herd is critical to ensure the abundant population in future years.

Mr. Speaker, deer hunting is very important to Nova Scotia’s economy. We estimate that there is as
much as $30 million of economic activity that is generated by deer hunting in Nova Scotia.

Mr. Speaker, Nova Scotians have a great tradition of respect of our natural resources and the beauty
of our great outdoors. I wish all our hunters and their families good hunting and a safe and accident-free
season. Thank you. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley.

MR. BROOKE TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, I welcome that statement from the honourable Minister of
Natural Resources. I think, again, it bears repetition and deserves reiteration. (Interruptions)

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please.

MR. TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, the member opposite’s bad manners are only exceeded by his bad
manners.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. Do not refer to the rabbit tracks. Let us keep on the big game, please.
(Interruptions)

MR. TAYLOR: May I repeat that again, Mr. Speaker?

MR. SPEAKER: No.

MR. TAYLOR: I think, again, Mr. Speaker, it bears repetition that 100 years ago today, our then and
now good neighbours from New Brunswick gave Nova Scotians 11 white-tailed deer, thus introducing the
animals to our beautiful province. I think hunters are very responsible people. Hunters take pride in Nova
Scotia’s forests and have successfully passed different safety courses, respecting their occupation. I also think
the minister’s department made the right decision by sticking to their guns respecting the Buck Law.
(Laughter)

Mr. Speaker, on my drive in here this morning from the beautiful Musquodoboit Valley, I saw and met
many hunters. These ladies and gentlemen, as the minister mentioned, contribute greatly to our economy,
something to the tune of $30 million.

AN HON. MEMBER: Before dawn?

MR. TAYLOR: No, Mr. Speaker, it was after dawn. I wish all of our hunters and their families a
successful and safe hunting season. In doing so, I commend the minister for his comments. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Halifax Atlantic.

MR. ROBERT CHISHOLM: Mr. Speaker, I just want to make a few brief comments. One thing is, I
would like to underline the remark by the minister in his statement that hunting in Nova Scotia is, in fact, a
privilege and not a right, as evidenced, I think, by the cancellation of the big game hunt that was supposed
to begin today for (Interruptions) (Laughter) That was initiated by thousands of Liberals across this province
. . .

MR. SPEAKER: Stick to the text of the ministerial announcement.

MR. CHISHOLM: While people in the woods right now who are hunting for deer will be ecstatic,
undoubtedly, given the weather and given the conditions and so on, there are thousands of Liberals, Mr.
Speaker, who are unable to proceed with their hunt.

MR. SPEAKER: I hesitate to call the honourable member to order, but please stick to the ministerial
announcement that has been made, in responding.

MR. CHISHOLM: I am just trying, Mr. Speaker, to underline a very important point about the fact that
this hunt is, in fact, a privilege and not a right.

The other thing, Mr. Speaker, is that the statement, this year is a special year for deer in Nova Scotia,
I would think that my daughter Jessica would take some umbrage with this. I don’t think there are very many
deer in Nova Scotia who think that this is a particularly special time of the year.

Anyway, one final comment, Mr. Speaker, is that we hear a lot about 1-800 numbers and I certainly
hope that people interested in hunting and safety and the proper adherence to rules will pay attention to this
1-800 number. I hope that the Department of Natural Resources or whoever it is that is staffing this 1-800
number, will pay much more attention to it and respond to it much more greatly and promptly and more
effectively and efficiently than does the Premier through his 1-800 number.

In conclusion, let me just say that I wish hunters the greatest of pleasure in their endeavours this
weekend. I hope they enjoy themselves, they have a very safe hunting season and on behalf of my daughter,
Jessica, I hope they have some bad luck in finding their prey, Mr. Speaker. Thank you.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Aw.

ORDERS OF THE DAY

GOVERNMENT BUSINESS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Deputy House Leader.

MR. ALLISTER SURETTE: Mr. Speaker, would you please call the order of business, Government
Motions.

GOVERNMENT MOTIONS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Deputy House Leader.

MR. ALLISTER SURETTE: Mr. Speaker, would you please call the order of business, Public Bills for
Second Reading.

PUBLIC BILLS FOR SECOND READING

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Deputy House Leader.

MR. ALLISTER SURETTE: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 109.

Bill No. 109 - Tourist Accommodations Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister for the Economic Renewal Agency.

HON. ROSS BRAGG: Mr. Speaker, I am pleased this morning to rise in my place and introduce and
move for second reading the Tourist Accommodations Act. This bill brings together the Hotel Regulations
Act, the Camping Establishments Regulation Act and the Innkeepers Act, rolling them into one common bill.

This has the following impact, Mr. Speaker. First, all roofed accommodations in the province,
regardless of their size, will be required to be inspected and licensed by the Tourism Nova Scotia. Currently,
small bed and breakfast, one and two room bed and breakfasts do not fall under the category of being
inspected. This has been asked for by the industry and now they will all be inspected by our staff, the same
as all motels and larger inns are currently being inspected.

This has a couple of things that we consider very positive. First, because they are now inspected and
licensed through our department, as is every other type of accommodation in the province, they will be able
to be in all our information and materials that we publish as being approved and licensed facilities within the
province. Previously, if they weren’t licensed and inspected by us, they didn’t fall within our jurisdiction and
were not in our information and materials.

The second thing, and I think this is most important, is it helps the public who come to visit Nova
Scotia to understand that this facility, whether it is a one or two bedroom facility, has met the standards and
is accepted by the standards of the industry in the Province of Nova Scotia. I think it is going to enhance the
activities of people who use bed and breakfasts.

The other thing, of course, is that we have brought in a section to the bill that there is now what we
call reverse onus, regarding indiscriminate camping. This has been a very controversial issue in the Province
of Nova Scotia; campground operators invest a lot of money and time in running good campgrounds and then
they find that what happens is people are stopping their motor homes and travel trailers in roadways and
parking lots and so on and are allowed to park, obviously without paying a fee and without having the
services.

In an effort to enhance the campground industry in Nova Scotia, not just for the operators but for the
industry as such because we regulate and make sure they are done and operated in a proper manner, we have
brought in that it is now illegal to allow people to indiscriminately camp on your property.

What this means is, for instance, and I will use our tourism office in Yarmouth as an example, we are
now forced not to allow people to park in our parking lot overnight, they have to go on the campgrounds and
so on. We believe this enhances the industry and is something the industry has been asking for.

The industry wanted us to go even further on this and fine people who actually did the camping
themselves. We said no, we don’t think that is fair, what we want to do is make sure property owners are not
allowing this to happen, if you want to run a campground then get licensed and run one, don’t operate it as
an unlicensed campground and allow people there.

Obviously we believe this bill is better for the industry, it brings them all under one Act. We believe
it is something that has been requested by the industry itself and by the Innkeepers Association.

So, Mr. Speaker, with those few remarks, I am pleased to move this for second reading.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Pictou West.

MR. DONALD MCINNES: Mr. Speaker, may I make a brief introduction first? I am very pleased to
have a student from St. Mary’s University in our gallery today. The student is in her third year of Commerce
and has travelled back and forth with me considerably over the last number of years, from Pictou County. We
are very pleased that Nancy MacEachern is here to visit and is very interested in the welfare and governing
of the Province of Nova Scotia. So, Nancy, would you please stand and be recognized. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Pictou West.

MR. DONALD MCINNES: Mr. Speaker, the bill the Minister for the Economic Renewal Agency has
introduced today, we just saw yesterday, of course, and did not have a lot of opportunity to talk to any of the
groups involved. It would seem to me that it is a reasonable piece of legislation. Last year tourism was an $835
million industry in the Province of Nova Scotia and it is important to do anything we can to help keep our
places up-to-date so that visitors will enjoy their stay here in Nova Scotia.

I am a little concerned about one and two bedroom places being inspected. Maybe the minister, when
he sums up the debate, would tell me how many inspectors he is going to have to check this out. I would
wonder. I would hope that most accommodations in this province are of high standards but, as I say, the
question, too, if I stop on somebody’s land and they don’t want me there as a tourist, you ask them to get off,
well, what happens if they don’t? The next morning they are going to be gone anyway. I appreciate that there
are sometimes people stopped in places they should not, that they should use the proper hook-ups, unless they
break down, of course, and that is something else.

[11:45 a.m.]

I guess our caucus, Mr. Speaker, will be supporting this bill as it comes forward. Perhaps the minister
might mention a little bit about the inspection, what and how he plans to do it. My one concern is about the
one and two bedrooms, whether they really have to be included or not. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Halifax Atlantic.

MR. ROBERT CHISHOLM: Mr. Speaker, I rise and speak for a few moments on Bill No. 109. As the
previous speaker said, anything that can be done to assist and continue to benefit the tourism industry in this
province will certainly be applauded by us and by most Nova Scotians.

I have some question as to whether this is going to do it. I have to take some time to take a look at it
and talk to people within the industry. But I reflect back on some of the things that have happened over the
last number of years on some of these issues. In particular, the method of taxation between smaller inns, bed
and breakfasts, motels, and larger hotels and the fact that that has raised some very significant controversy
within the so-called industry. The relationship, I think, between the large downtown urban hotels and the
motels and smaller bed and breakfasts in this province have sometimes been at odds, to say the least. I think
that it is important that we understand who it is the industry is when the minister presents a piece of
legislation and says that this is what the industry wants. I think it is important that we hear from, and we will
have that opportunity, hopefully, in Law Amendments Committee to hear from the different interests that are
clearly integral to the tourism industry in the Province of Nova Scotia and will be greatly affected by the
changes made with Bill No. 109.

The questions raised about how these inspections are going to happen and how many staff are going
to be put on and what are the quality ratings going to be based on and that sort of thing, Mr. Speaker, are quite
important points and we will need to take some considerable time, I think, to review those specific concerns.
I think many members in this House are aware that, for instance, the star rating system used by the tourism
department to rate various establishments in this province has come under some significant criticism by those
different groups that I have already identified.

So, Mr. Speaker, I think there are a lot of questions that still remain about this particular piece of
legislation and about the objective of this minister with this piece of legislation. I think it is important that
we understand and that all the people representing those diverse groups within the industry that are affected
by this bill, that we find out that they, in fact, have been thoroughly consulted and that we understand what
the concerns are that they had, that they still have and whether, in fact, those issues have been addressed or
perhaps can be addressed in terms of whatever failings or weaknesses might exist in this particular piece of
legislation.

So, on the face of it, Mr. Speaker, I will be, and on my own behalf, supporting this Bill No. 109, going
through to Law Amendments Committee. But I would encourage the minister to make sure that there is a wide
representation at Law Amendments Committee to ensure that the Law Amendments Committee and all
members of this House understand just what the view of the industry is with respect to An Act Respecting
Tourist Accommodations in the Province. Once that happens, then perhaps we will have a little more factual
material to present with respect to the situation and the conditions that are represented and presented in this
bill. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Queens.

MR. JOHN LEEFE: Mr. Speaker, I initially had not intended to speak to this bill but upon reviewing
it find that it has what appears to me to be a number of deficiencies. I want to bring them to the minister’s
attention so he can give consideration to them as we move the bill through second reading and look forward
to amendments, both in the Law Amendments Committee and later on in Committee of the Whole House.

As I understand the bill from reading it, it will now require that any person who offers even one room
in their home for rent as tourist accommodation would be required to be licensed. As I understand it, up to
this time and until this bill becomes law, there was a provision which would cause persons who have one or
two rooms in their houses which they offer for accommodation not to have to be licensed in the same way that,
for example, the Halifax Hilton - that is a bad example - the Sheraton or White Point Beach Lodge would.

If, in fact, the bill does this, I think the bill will have an unfortunate application, particularly in rural
and small town Nova Scotia, where accommodations are not necessarily as immediately available as they are
in some of the larger areas. I hope I am wrong in that observation but I look forward to the minister
responding to that when he wraps up.

I have a greater concern with the section of the bill that references that no person shall, within the
province, use any land as grounds for camping or overnight parking of recreational vehicles unless there is
a license that is enforced. Now, Mr. Speaker, something like three-quarters of the land in this province is
owned by the private sector, a significant part of that owned by large landowners but most of it owned by
relatively small landowners.

Again, the way I read this bill, it strikes me that any person who owns land, for example I have 10
acres in Broad River in Queens County and if I allow that land to be used by friends, family, people who may
be travelling through our area, for camping, then it strikes me to believe that I may well be in contravention
of the Act. If, in fact, that is the case, it strikes me that the proposal which is put forward by the minister is
far too broad and that there should be a restriction built in the bill so that if a person chooses to use their land
for a non-commercial venture with respect to camping and allow people to stay on it from time to time, they
should not have to go to the minister’s department and acquire a license to allow that camping to take place.

I can think of all kinds of instances, particularly in those parts of Nova Scotia which are wilderness
areas, where land is owned but where the owner is clearly not anywhere near present and where people camp
all the time. I think, for example, that whole area around the Tobeatic - part of which is owned by Bowater,
some of which is Crown land, some of which belongs to small private landowners and so on - I wonder if
somebody camps there, if the owner of that land is then liable unless they put out a prohibition, as their own
policy, against anybody using that land for camping purposes. I think there would be a very negative reaction
on the part of people who are campers, hunters, fishermen, naturalists, if this were to be the case. So, I look
to the minister to clarify that for us.

I also notice that, and again with respect to this, there is a prohibition against any person using lands
for camping that are not licensed. Right away I thought of the Scout camp in Greenfield, I don’t think it is a
camping facility licensed under the minister’s department, yet it is very clear that people camp there. Scouts
camp there. When Nancy and I used to go and help out with the Cubs from time to time we would take a tent
trailer with us and put it up on the site, but it was not a licensed facility. Now is this going to interfere with
the operation of campgrounds that are run by people like Scouts Canada, Guides Canada and other agencies
throughout Nova Scotia? The Baptist youth camp up in the northern part of my constituency and so on, is this
going to infringe upon their capacity to offer their campground so that it can work effectively on behalf of
those who use it.

Another example leapt to mind, last July when we were celebrating Privateer Days in Queens County,
the Royal Highland Immigrants came to our community to provide us with a recreation of British military life
around the time of the American revolution. They camped on the lands that belonged to Lane’s Motel; Ron
Lane, of course, being the Mayor of the Town of Liverpool and former president of the Tourist Industry
Association of Nova Scotia. That is not a registered campground, the hotel is registered, but the lands around
it are not registered for camping. Those people who were re-enacting military life of the 1770’s, 1780’s were
camped there, they had their campfires there, they had their tents set up, it was a regular campground.

My fear is that this bill may cause that kind of activity to be illegal. If that is so, it is a very serious
shortcoming in the bill. I am sure that the minister would not want to cause that to happen and I look forward
to his response with respect to that. There are many good things in the bill that I would like to support but I
would very much like the minister to review the bill with respect to some of the shortcomings that I think I
see in it. Thank you.

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

MR. JOHN HOLM: Mr. Speaker, I have a number of points that I would like to make -some of them
are very similar to those that have been raised by other speakers - and a number of concerns that I would hope
to get the opportunity to get some clarification from the minister. I say at the outset that the thrust of what I
believe the minister is trying to do and the industry is trying to do, I very much support.

As we travel around this province we have many areas that are indeed very scenic, very beautiful areas,
and the potential for tourism in small components is very great. Certainly, they would not be economically
viable areas, quite probably to build a larger hotel or motel but they would be very viable opportunities for
those who wish to develop bed and breakfasts as we have seen occurring around the province. I have stayed
in bed and breakfasts, Mr. Speaker, and I found them to be indeed very pleasant, very enjoyable and the
service and accommodations of the highest standards. On many occasions it is a far more personal type of
accommodation than staying in some hotels. I certainly very much support the trust of the government to try
to have the bed and breakfasts around the province being registered, being licensed so that those who are
using those facilities can in fact be assured of a level of standards and that when they check in when they go
into them, that they will receive that. So, that is indeed very positive.

I think, however, that the bill does go in some areas a little bit further than the minister really covered
and touched on when he gave his remarks. I confess that since this bill was only introduced yesterday
afternoon and we sat yesterday, I haven’t had the opportunity to examine in the kind of depth that I would like
some of the aspects of this bill, but, one of the things that I am wondering in reviewing the bill, is that it seems
to be placing or should I say, placing limitations on the liability and responsibility of some of those who are
operating, as are referred to in the bill, roofed accommodation. For example, just as a principle and we are
on the principle of the bill, it says that, Clause 11(1) “A manager of a roofed accommodation is not liable to
make good to any guest of the manager any loss of or injury to goods or property brought to the manager’s
accommodations except . . . ” and there are some exceptions here, “(a) where the goods . . . have been stolen,
lost or injured through the wilful act, default or neglect of the manager or any staff in the employ of the
manager; or (b) where the goods or property have been deposited expressly for safe custody with the
manager.”.

[12:00 p.m.]

Well, I am wondering, Mr. Speaker, does this mean, and I don’t know the answer to this and I am
posing it for clarification, that the operators of such facilities would no longer be required to carry, for
example, liability insurance so that in the case where it is not a wilful act or not necessarily neglect, that they
could not be held accountable for that? I don’t know the answer. I am posing it as a question and the minister,
I caught his attention now. I am referring to Clause 11, so possibly the minister can address that.

There are several other sections. I also note that the bill does give power, or pretty great powers, to the
minister and I am not sure exactly where I see the checks and balances to those powers where, for example,
Clause 5, “The Minister may attach to any licence such terms, conditions or restrictions as the Minister
considers advisable and the Minister may . . .”, it goes on, Mr. Speaker, to add different conditions and so on
in writing, Clause 6, “The Minister may, at any time, cancel or suspend any license for any reason that the
Minister deems sufficient . . .”.

Well, I would like to know, Mr. Speaker, if there are any kinds of appeal processes, any checks and
balances. Here the minister would have and I am sure this minister would not use that irresponsibly but
certainly the minister’s have pretty extreme powers over the operations and certainly should be in accordance
with set standards to ensure that the standards of the accommodations and so on are up to that which are
expected and accepted. But there is nothing in this that would specify any restrictions or restraint on the
powers of the minister.

The previous speaker had raised some questions about campgrounds. I can’t remember the exact area
that he was talking about and I am sure this is not the intent of what the minister is trying to do and so I
would ask, because I was thinking of not the same area that the member for Queens was talking about, but,
for example, around the Miller’s Lake area, just out by the airport, a major area where camping is done by the
Boy Scout movement and so on and, also, in parts of Upper Sackville there are camps used by the Girl Guides
and so on. I am sure, as I say, that is not intended but maybe the minister could indicate where the
clarification is to make sure that they are exempted.

The other one that I want to touch on and I appreciate what the minister is trying to do in controlling
the campgrounds for the good of the industry, but you know there are some areas where there may not be, for
certain kinds of larger caravans, the campground facilities. We do have coming into the area every summer,
go to certain shopping centres and you will see what some people refer to as the grey parade, you have these
caravans of the Airstream campers where large numbers of tourists like to travel together and tour groups
organize these Airstream.

AN HON. MEMBER: There is no campground big enough to handle them.

MR. HOLM: Well, the member for Queens points out to me and he may well be correct, there may not
be any campgrounds large enough to handle and certainly it is in the advantage to the realtors who operate
certain shopping centres where these caravans pull in from time to time. I know I have gone to some very
large shopping centres in the metropolitan area and had a hard time parking because the parking lot was filled
up with a normal number of customers in the close range and then you had literally hundreds, it appeared,
of the Airstream campers.

So I am curious if there are, or where in the bill, there are the provisions to accommodate this kind of
camping excursion because, certainly, those tourists who are coming in these cavalcades, these caravans, are
not only bringing themselves, Mr. Speaker, but they are bringing tremendous economic spinoff effects to the
entire community as they are leaving behind their dollars in the business establishments around the province.
I would suggest that, for example, in the metropolitan area we probably do not have the campgrounds that
are able to handle that number of such camping excursions.

I certainly could touch upon a number of other items up here in the bill. We haven’t had the
opportunity to do the detailed review, or I personally have not had the opportunity to do the detailed review
that I would like to be able to do. Certainly this, like so many other bills, gives the Governor in Council
tremendous power to make regulations, to basically do whatever they want or set whatever terms and
conditions.

I may have missed it, I don’t wish to be unkind, but there has to be also a way to ensure that there is
a process built in for the dialogue with the industries that are affected by these regulations, and I think that
needs to be built in. I have no hesitation at this point in time to say that I will certainly be joining my
colleague, who is the critic for the area, to say that I will be supporting the bill to go to second reading but
I hope the minister will address - and I am very hopeful that the concerns that I have raised are, in fact, silly
concerns that don’t need to be considered because they are covered, but I haven’t seen the areas in the bill
where that is the case - I look forward to the minister clearing up some of the confusion that is hopefully only
appearing in my own mind because of my inability to have had more time to review the bill that is before us.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

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

MR. RUSSELL MACNEIL: Mr. Speaker, I would like to introduce through you and to you and to
members in the House, a gentleman in the gallery who has been involved in municipal politics for many,
many years. He has recently retired, but it is the former Mayor of New Waterford, Mr. Gerry Marsh. I would
like him to stand and receive the applause and warm welcome. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: I certainly would like to welcome former Mayor Marsh to our Chambers here this
afternoon. He is a long-time friend with whom I had many dealings over many years. I am glad to see you
here this afternoon, sir.

The honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley.

MR. BROOKE TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, I welcome the opportunity to rise and speak on the bill
respecting tourism accommodations in this province. I think I heard the honourable minister say during his
opening comments that he had the support of the various stakeholders so to speak, the various people in the
tourism and accommodation industry. He had the support of those different groups.

Now, because of the considerable number of letters and correspondence we have received, the large
number of negative correspondence this caucus has received respecting the requirement that bed and breakfast
operators are to collect the provincial sales tax for the first time ever, Mr. Speaker, you may know that since
this government came to power and for the first time in history, bed and breakfast operators are required to
charge and collect the PST to and from their guests.

One particular operator suggested, on average, the amount that his small operation would remit to the
province probably wouldn’t be much more than $300, or roughly the cost of a meal for the Finance Minister
and his federal Public Works counterpart. So, I am quite concerned about the consultation process and I really
hope that the minister will, during the appropriate time, relate to members of the House just how extensive
this consultation process was.

Also, from going through the bill, I note where the minister has an opportunity and he may attach to
any license such terms and conditions and restrictions as he deems fit. Mr. Speaker, that considers me a
certain amount of consternation when the minister has that type of power.

I do understand that he is a powerful minister, I just hope that it doesn’t go to his head. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: Are there any further intervenors? If I recognize the honourable minister, it will be
to close the debate.

The honourable Minister for the Economic Renewal Agency.

HON. ROSS BRAGG: Mr. Speaker, I just want to clear up a few of the points that were made during
this. Let me express it this way, if there is any concern about this impacting on the Boy Scouts, Girl Guides
and camping and so on, it is not our intention and we will ensure that the right provisions are made, so it
doesn’t affect those kinds of organizations.

This is entirely in response to the campground and tourism industry. Someone asked if we consulted
with them. This bill is as a result of consultations with the tourism industry, the campground owners, the
Innkeepers’ Guild, the various components in the industry. This is in response to what they have told us they
wanted.

Let me get to the nub of the problem of indiscriminate camping and I will give you a good example
of that. In Cumberland County, and I will give you two examples, we have a well-run, well-kept campground
at the Fort Lawrence border entry point into Nova Scotia, within one-quarter mile of our tourist bureau. I
believe it would be wrong for us to allow people to park for the sole reason of avoiding paying an overnight
fee in a campground, in the parking lot of our tourist bureau overnight and allow them to escape supporting
our campground industry, where there are proper facilities for garbage disposal, sewage, water and so on, that
is secured and has staff and so on, and to allow them to do that. We believe this enhances the campground
and the tourism industry in general in Nova Scotia. That is one example, because that was happening in the
past.

In Yarmouth, and I have been corresponding with campground operators who pay good money to run
a good campground, they pay money to have good services and upgraded facilities. Why should we allow them
to park in the local service station yard overnight, waiting for the ferry, instead of going half a mile down the
road and parking in a campground?

Now the issue is not just indiscriminate camping that well, we want to force them to pay. We want to
make sure that the quality and standards in Nova Scotia are such that you have a level of standard and we
have to support those. You know so many times you will see where somebody has camped on the side of the
road or whatever and they have left either garbage or they didn’t have a place to dump their waste water and
so on. This is going to make sure that they use campgrounds that have the proper hook-ups, that are licensed
and approved for that matter.

We are not after somebody who lets their friend park their trailer in their back yard for the night, this
is not what we are after. We are after the parking lots of shopping malls, in the case where there are facilities
nearby.

If there are not facilities, and I think that is a different story and we will have to deal with that, maybe
through Law Amendments Committee or whatever, we can talk about how we deal with that area.

Our concern is, that we don’t want to allow campgrounds and the people who invest their hard-earned
money in them to suffer because people are not abiding by the rules. That is all it is. We are not after the Girl
Guides or the Boy Scouts and we will ensure that provision is in there some place to protect that.

The consultation has taken place and I just wanted to deal briefly with the indiscriminate camping
issue. If there is a suggestion that comes along, as this bill goes through the process, of a better way to regulate
that, or adjust it, or some items that need to be brought up, we are certainly more than welcome to hear them
and we will take them with great advice.

MR. JOHN LEEFE: I wonder if the minister would answer a question. I will take the minister’s
comments at face value with respect to consultation. I do wonder if the minister can advise the House whether
the consultative process has included the Recreation Association of Nova Scotia, for example, who would have
a rather different point of view, perhaps, than the commercial campground owners would, with respect to an
appropriate form of regulation and statutory regime to govern camping in Nova Scotia?

If the minister has not had the opportunity to consult with them, I would ask that he do so in advance
of us getting into further consideration of the bill, that is in the stages beyond second reading, so that we do
have their input.

MR. BRAGG: I don’t know the answer to that question. I will find out, I will make sure that we do and
make them aware of what we are doing and invite their input. I can’t imagine that they wouldn’t be supportive
of it.

[12:15 p.m.]

I guess just the closing point that I would like to make, Mr. Speaker, is that we encourage people to
run good campgrounds and I think we should be supportive of the efforts they make. They are investing
money and so on, I just think it is so important that for the same reason we have regulations in other areas
of the hotel industry and so on, I think this is entirely appropriate if we are trying to make this a professional
tourism industry in Nova Scotia and I certainly will make sure that the recreation association is contacted.
I move second reading.

MS. ALEXA MCDONOUGH: I have a question, Mr. Speaker. It is a question based on my own
ignorance, I admit that absolutely freely. I think everyone agrees that the bed and breakfast component of the
tourism industry is really a fabulous part of our tourism infrastructure and I am not aware of whether there
is a bed and breakfast operators association separate and apart from the Innkeepers’ Guild and the other
associations.

The minister did not mention that association, I don’t believe, and if it is in existence which I would
have thought was the case, I think I can remember having been contacted by them on a couple of occasions,
then I just wanted to ask the minister, first, can he confirm that there is such an association and secondly, that
such consultation was in fact conducted? Around the crafting of regulations that are suitable to the bed and
breakfast industry, it seems to me there needs to be a good deal of sensitivity because in many instances bed
and breakfast operators are certainly trying to operate in a very professional way.

If faced with unduly stringent regulations, you might not only make it impossible for them to meet the
standards and operate but you might also risk eliminating what it is that makes bed and breakfast facilities
attractive to that segment of the population that really opts for them and prefers the homey atmosphere of bed
and breakfasts. I wonder if the minister could address that question?

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister for the Economic Renewal Agency to close the debate.

HON. ROSS BRAGG: That is a good point because the member for Pictou West brought that point
up and I forgot to respond to it. Yes, there are various associations of B&Bs. I think there are country inns,
which is a B&B group that is sort of the smaller facilities. I think Cape Breton has its own B&B association.
They have been consulted. I didn’t mention them because it wasn’t in my notes. Let me give you the same
undertaking that I did for the member for Queens. I will check and see what that consultation was and make
sure that it is there. We are trying to help them. This shouldn’t be perceived to them as being - it is not
expensive, we don’t impose serious regulation but it is a standard that we are trying to set and we will make
sure that before this bill comes back to the House that I have that information.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for second reading of Bill No. 109, the Tourist Accommodations Act.
Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

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

The honourable Deputy House Leader.

MR. ALLISTER SURETTE: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 110.

Bill No. 110 - Peggy’s Cove Commission Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister for the Economic Renewal Agency.

HON. ROSS BRAGG: This bill is amendments to the Peggy’s Cove Commission Act, and I won’t make
the same mistake I made last year about a bill when I said this is just housekeeping, we ended up being two
days. This transfers the responsibility for the Act from the Department of Municipal Affairs to tourism and
it ensures adequate representation by Peggy’s Cove residents on the Peggy’s Cove Commission.

One of the things that happened in the past is the way that it was written, is that it wasn’t necessary
for somebody from the community of Peggy’s Cove that lived there to be a member of the commission.
Sometimes somebody was but sometimes they weren’t. What we have done, we have changed the make up so
that it is required in the bill that so many members be from the community in Peggy’s Cove. The reason for
this, this is a very sensitive area, Peggy’s Cove is probably the number one tourist attraction in Nova Scotia.
It has a very sensitive ecosystem, if I can call it that. The community has very strong feelings about where they
live and work in the community, of making sure that the community has the right kind of input. I want to give
you just a little example of that.

Recently, we undertook a major project that we took over after the government changed, it was initiated
by the former administration, on to the DeGarthe Gallery and some washrooms and so on. There was a great
concern by the public that lived in Peggy’s Cove about how we were going to handle this project. In fact, they
said, look, we have some ideas of our own. We agreed with them that we felt it was important that not all of
the commission but part of the commission have representation from the people who live in the Village of
Peggy’s Cove. So, this is the other change that we have made to this. We believe that it is in the best interest
of preserving that very special spot, Peggy’s Cove, and looking after the interests of the people who have the
most vested interest there, the people who live and work in the community.

Mr. Speaker, with that, I move second reading of this bill.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Pictou West.

MR. DONALD MCINNES: Mr. Speaker, I rise to speak very briefly on the Peggy’s Cove Commission
Act, the amendments, Bill No. 110, as introduced by the Minister of the Economic Renewal Agency. I guess
we don’t want to say that it is a housekeeping bill but it is changing, as the minister pointed out, the authority
of the commission from Municipal Affairs to Tourism. In fact, I guess that was done maybe a year or so ago
and this bill actually makes it effective so that funding can be authorized correctly. I think that is true that it
was actually done April 1, 1993.

The fact that the amendments stipulate that there have to be three members from Peggy’s Cove, would
speak for itself. Certainly, the people who are involved in the community are the people that should be on the
commission. I think it is probably well that they have somebody from the Economic Renewal Agency, from
the department, to sit in with them to make various comments and suggestions to the commission.

I was looking for the member for the area and I did look for him, anyway I didn’t see him but I would
hope that he is supportive of the bill. Unless there are some other points raised that I am not aware of, we will
be supporting this amendment of the Peggy’s Cove Commission Act. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Halifax Atlantic.

MR. ROBERT CHISHOLM: Mr. Speaker, I rise to make a few comments on Bill No. 110, An Act to
Amend Chapter 339 of the Revised Statutes, 1989, the Peggy’s Cove Commission Act. I understand that I
think it was last year that the commission was moved out of Municipal Affairs into Tourism and this is
another step as a result of the merging of those two departments.

Let me just say, Mr. Speaker, that around the province I have heard from some people a concern that
at a time when our province and the country and the world are talking about the importance of tourism, we
suddenly don’t have a tourism department or a department that doesn’t have a name, the Department of
Tourism. I think that is in part a concern that is underlined when you have a commission like this that is
specifically put in under the Nova Scotia Economic Renewal Agency and its division of tourism because of
the nature of the attraction of Peggy’s Cove and the integral role that Peggy’s Cove plays in the tourism
industry in this province.

The fact that there is a guarantee put in here that there would be three members from the community
is, I think, certainly a good idea. I understand that the community has been fairly well-represented in the past
few years.

There is one particular concern, I understand, that comes out of this and that is to a clause that relates
to the purpose. The purpose clause now reads that the purpose of the commission is to preserve the unique
scenic, beauty, character and atmosphere of the area and this piece of legislation adds at the end of that, for
the enjoyment of both residents and visitors. Some concern has been raised as to why that addition was made,
what is the rationale behind making that addition to the purpose clause?

In the run-up to the federal election, I understand that there was some considerable debate over
whether, in fact, there was going to be an initiative to enhance the facilities and the infrastructure at Peggy’s
Cove to make it a bigger tourist attraction. That was fought, I understand, tooth and nail by the community
and the federal and provincial governments backed off and I believe, since the federal election both the
province and the federal government have supported the commission and the community in their defence.
Their defence, as you can appreciate, is a defence of the community itself, that they maintain the scenic
quality, the pristine nature of that particular site.

In that regard, when there is that addition or expansion made under the purpose clause without any
explanation, at least to the commission, I have heard from people on the commission who have said that they
weren’t consulted, the people in the community were not consulted about this change to the purpose clause
and that those people are concerned about that, because it was, in fact, the definition under the purpose clause
which the community used so effectively to fend off the possible encroachment through an enhancement
program for Peggy’s Cove.

Mr. Speaker, it makes perfect sense, I think, that because of the fact that the Departments of Economic
Development and Tourism were amalgamated under the Nova Scotia Economic Renewal Agency, that the
Peggy’s Cove Commission would then have to follow in under this new merger, this new definition.

I think that that question about the purpose clause has to be addressed in order for us and other people
who are concerned about this, in order for us to have full confidence, that the integrity of Peggy’s Cove cannot
be maintained because of the fact that those additions have been made.

So, with those few brief comments, I will certainly be supporting the bill moving forward to the Law
Amendments Committee but we will continue to consult with people on that particular issue and hopefully
we will get some representation at the Law Amendments Committee and perhaps we will hear an explanation
from the minister that will address some of the concerns that have been raised. With those few comments, I
will take my seat and indicate that I will be voting in favour of this bill moving forward to the Law
Amendments Committee. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Hants West.

MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I don’t want to delay the House on this bill because it is a
straightforward bill. I was wondering if the minister would be so kind in his remarks at the end of the debate
on this bill to let the House know whether or not the Peggy’s Cove Commission is at the present time at full
complement. I see by the original Act that consisted of seven members. Whether or not the three members
of the four additional members on that commission will be going through the process of being appointed to
the commission through the Human Resources Committee, and I am sure the minister listened to what I had
to say. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

[12:30 p.m.]

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

The honourable Minister for the Economic Renewal Agency.

HON. ROSS BRAGG: I apologize to the member opposite for not listening. I am sure we will have
an opportunity before the bill is completed and if he has anything that I miss out on, I would be delighted to
talk to him at another time, maybe before it goes through to the next stage.

The community was very concerned and this is the whole reason for the changes. To the member for
Halifax Atlantic, his concerns about why we changed that final clause was to address the needs of the
community, the concerns of the community. The community is very supportive of this bill and we feel it is
important to recognize the input the community has made to the success of Peggy’s Cove over the last number
of years.

This bill is something that is going to be good for the Peggy’s Cove community for years to come. I
appreciate the support the members opposite have offered in moving this forward.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for second reading of Bill No. 110. Would all those in favour of the
motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

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

The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.

MR. ALLISTER SURETTE: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 111.

Bill No. 111 - Fatality Inquiries Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Justice.

HON. WILLIAM GILLIS: Mr. Speaker, as I rise to speak on Bill No. 111 I would like to move that
this bill be now read a second time. As we know, it is an Act to amend the Fatality Inquiries Act.

As all members would know, it is a straightforward amendment which provides that the Chief Medical
Examiner for the Province of Nova Scotia not only be a duly qualified medical practitioner but also would be
required to have training and qualifications in pathology, and such standards that would be prescribed by
regulations that the Governor in Council will make. For example, some might argue he might need to be a
forensic pathologist but at present the incumbent does not have the pathology qualifications and the justice
community in the province in general feel we should upgrade it. That is what the bill is doing.

The regulations will be drafted to ensure that the Chief Medical Examiner has the training and
qualifications to do the required job at a level that is expected by the citizens of the province.

I believe it is fair to say, Mr. Speaker, that there has been growing recognition that the Office of the
Chief Medical Examiner should have those specialized qualifications. This has come up a number of times
and, as I recall, the present Minister of Community Services a couple of years ago, when in opposition,
introduced a bill to this general effect. The commitment was made that the new government would do this
and I am doing it at this time.

It is the feeling of the government that the confidence of the people of the province in the office and
the justice system in general will be increased if we increase the qualifications and that we have a better
program and better standards for the office.

I think it is important to note that as technology and the forensic field move forward, we want to make
sure we are on the forefront of change and following modern practices and I think it is time for this particular
change. So, Mr. Speaker, I commend this bill to all honourable members of the House.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Hants West.

MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Yes, Mr. Speaker, I would like to commend the Minister of Justice and the
government in bringing this bill forward. I have just a couple of questions and primarily they relate to the
present incumbent. As I understand this bill, it states that, “Clause 1(2) The Chief Medical Examiner for Nova
Scotia, whether appointed before or after . . .” must have these qualifications in forensic medicine. I was
wondering, the present medical examiner, is he coming up to early retirement or what are the arrangements
made, once this bill is assented to, for the continuation of a medical examiner with these qualifications and
what happens to the previous incumbent.

With those couple of questions, Mr. Speaker, that is all that I have to say on this particular piece of
legislation. We will be supporting it in this particular caucus and we applaud the government for coming
forward with this legislation.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the New Democratic Party.

MS. ALEXA MCDONOUGH: Mr. Speaker, I just want to make a couple of brief comments and I
guess I, too, have a couple of questions. If I had the benefit of hearing the Minister of Justice’s response to the
earlier questions posed, I might not have those questions but since the legislative debate does not go that way,
I will raise a couple of the concerns that I have at this point and the minister may already be preparing to
address the very same issues already brought to his attention.

I want to say at the outset I have absolutely no trouble supporting what I understand to be the intent
of this bill and I can’t imagine why anyone would have difficulty if, as stated by the minister, it is really to
ensure that we have the best possible standard of contemporary medical services available as it relates to the
functions of the Chief Medical Examiner. The minister himself has made the point that the bill, as it is
currently worded, does not actually spell out what qualifications and training are intended or will be set out
in the regulations. That makes it a little bit difficult to do anything more than say that we support the intent
because whether or not the regulations are reasonable would determine whether the government’s action in
this regard is in fact supportable.

I think the general principle is a sound one. Obviously there are new developments in forensic sciences,
in forensic medicine all of the time. We want to ensure the best possible qualifications and expertise are
available in carrying out these important services.

The questions that arise are really around the issue of what is the current status of the Chief Medical
Examiner and what would be his status in the event of his not meeting the qualifications set out in the newly
prescribed regulations. I believe I saw comments attributed to the minister. I don’t want to unfairly attribute
them but in referring to this bill, in trying to separate between the principle here and what the government
is trying to attain from any issues surrounding the incumbent in the position and while I think that is a
reasonable thing to do when you are talking about the purpose of the bill, I think that there is a responsibility
on the part of all of us to try to determine what that will mean to the current incumbent in that position.

In other words, is it the government’s intention to do what I think would be reasonable in this situation.
I frankly don’t know whether it is easily achievable but, in any situation where one’s job is upgraded, the
training or qualifications required for the job, in fact, are increased, especially in the instance where someone
has given long service in a particular job, it is surely the fair and reasonable thing to give that incumbent
every opportunity to seek additional training that would allow for that person to upgrade their qualifications
to meet the newly prescribed standard.

I guess my first question is whether such provisions will, in fact, be made. I don’t know how many
years Dr. Roland Perry has been in that job but it is my impression for a very long time. I don’t believe that
he is near retirement age but perhaps that is also relevant to ask in terms of the transition that might be
envisaged by the implementation of not just the bill, because that does not really deal with the specifics, but
the regulations themselves.

So my question would be, what would his status be under the new regulations? Will the government
be in some way grandfathering the current incumbent while providing for some kind of transition period, or
will there be some other way of addressing this issue?

I think that we know there are many instances in which people don’t happen to have the formal
qualifications to do a particular job, but it is hard to argue with the proposition that if someone has been in
a job, performing a job, for a very long time, coming along behind that person and putting in new, higher
standards really seems to miss the point that this person obviously has great experience beyond what would
be the entry qualifications to be hired in a new position.

So I think it is extremely important how this matter is addressed, both from the point of view of the
fairness to the incumbent and from the point of view of making sure that we don’t just get caught in the
sometimes phony trap of credentialism without giving appropriate consideration to the qualifications and the
extensive experience that one has already obviously obtained as a person in the job for a very long period of
time.

I raise that question because it has always seemed to me that there is something a bit perverse and
insensitive about the way that this issue has been handled over a period of several years. There has, I think,
on numerous occasions, been concern raised about whether, in fact, Dr. Perry has the qualifications that one
would obviously look for if one were hiring someone anew in that position. I would think that the prerequisite
would probably be that of pathology training, and the issue of whether additional forensic medicine,
specialized training, is required or not, I would not be competent to comment. Obviously you need the
experience of forensic medicine, but whether the Chief Medical Examiner needs to be the person in whom
that resides, I am not in a position to know.

There have been concerns raised from time to time and I guess it has always concerned me a bit that
if there are really serious problems about the competence of an individual in a job then I think you have to
deal with that issue. I am not in a position to know whether that is the case in the situation of the current
Chief Medical Examiner, but it seems to me that if that is the case that it needs to be dealt with and it needs
to be dealt with in a forthright manner. If that is not case, then it seems to me that this matter has to be
handled in a very sensitive way and it has to be understood that just raising the level of the training and
qualifications that one would apply upon hiring someone new in the position is not an appropriate way. It
seems to me a bit of a back-door way or a roundabout way perhaps to deal with problems that some people
feel exist or some may want to try to argue is a reason for raising the qualifications as such.

 

 

So I hope the minister can address this question. I frankly understand why he might resist this being
called the Roland Perry bill because I don’t think that is appropriate. But I don’t think that the government
can sidestep the questions about what the implications of bringing in the new higher standards will be for the
current incumbent. I think it is appropriate for the minister to address that question, in order for us to know
what the actual outcome will be of this bill being adopted and regulations being put in place.

[12:45 p.m.]

So, I just say in conclusion that we have no difficulty supporting the stated purpose, the principle of
the bill, but would want to know what the government’s intention is with respect to what the status will be of
the incumbent and how that will be dealt with if, in fact, the qualifications stipulated in the new regulations
exceed the current level of training and qualifications of that incumbent. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

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

The honourable Minister of Justice.

HON. WILLIAM GILLIS: I think both members raised some of the same questions as was suggested
. . .

MR. SPEAKER: Order please. Those wishing to carry on separate conversations, please leave the
Chamber.

MR. GILLIS: I will try to deal with both members as they raised some of the same questions as the
second speaker suggested, so I will try my best to outline in relatively short compass, the answers.

In terms of qualifications, I think it may be a little confusing in the bill but I think it is pretty clear that
the qualifications are of a pathologist not a general practitioner, which Dr. Perry is in this case. Dr. Perry is
not a pathologist and although we are going to give the detail whether it be forensic or otherwise, you are
going to have to be a pathologist, so that is the first point.

To go on from there, the bottom line behind this bill is that the justice community is demanding a
person with pathology qualifications, that is the bottom line. It is the Bar, it is the police, maybe even the
bench. They feel that in Nova Scotia in 1994 it is time that we have a trained pathologist in the job of Chief
Medical Examiner, so we have to start with that premise.

I am personally sympathetic, we stray into discussing the incumbent, I am sympathetic to Dr. Perry,
he served Nova Scotia for a long time and given his training, I think he has done a relatively good job. But
the incumbent just didn’t have the pathology training so that is the situation. The justice community is
virtually demanding that we have a pathologist in the job and then we have to go from there.

I might go on to say that Dr. Perry is represented by a solicitor in all of this and again it gets difficult.
I don’t want to jeopardize the discussions going on between representatives of my department and Dr. Perry’s
solicitor, I don’t want to trespass on that, they are having discussions. You get into the matter of
grandparenting the job, well you cannot grandparent the job given the fact that you need a pathologist, it is
impossible. As sympathetic as anybody might be to the incumbent, an incumbent that doesn’t have the
qualifications that are needed, it is just not possible.

So, we go from there, I mean if it were possible, I am sure that it is theoretically possible that the
incumbent could upgrade the qualifications to become a full-fledged pathologist but again, I think we are
talking quite a bit of time. I think that is a specialty in medicine and I don’t think that is a practical approach
to it.

I guess what I will say is that my department is handling the matter in as sensitive a way as possible
and that is why maybe we could have tried to get it in before the end of the spring session, the end of June but
discussions were going on even then. But the time has come and this is why the bill is before us now. All I
can say is the bill is subject to proclamation, Dr. Perry is carrying out the job. If, once the bill is proclaimed
and if he is not qualified, we will certainly see that a qualified person is available either on an interim basis
and eventually on a full time basis. But we want to handle this in a sensitive way and those discussions are
going on and I can assure all honourable members that we will deal with it in the best way possible. But the
bottom line is, based on the demands of the justice system and in fairness to accused persons in Nova Scotia
and victims in Nova Scotia, too, the change has to be made and that is why the bill here. I commend it to all
members to send it on to Law Amendments Committee and there may be some comments there.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for second reading of Bill No. 111, the Fatality Inquiries Act.

Is the House ready for the question? Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary
minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

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

The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.

MR. ALLISTER SURETTE: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 112.

Bill No. 112 - Trustee Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Justice.

HON. WILLIAM GILLIS: Mr. Speaker, I have some brief comments on Bill No. 112, An Act to
Amend the Trustee Act. In so doing, I want to move second reading of Bill No. 112.

This bill is a parallel bill to amendments to the Provincial Finance Act that happened last spring. Some
members, I am sure, most members would recall that in the spring we amended the Provincial Finance Act
for the purpose of replacing the investment criteria with discretionary investment strategy based on what is
called a prudent investor rule or test. In other words, to give the persons, in this case covered by the Trustee
Act, a little more flexibility rather than Canada Savings Bonds, in terms of investments - a little more
flexibility so they can invest in something a little broader. We amended the Provincial Finance Act to do that
in the spring. We have, in fact, certain other amendments that have been recommended for other Statutes
where there are very conservative investment criteria.

So this is what we are doing now, bringing in amendments that are similar to the Provincial Finance
Act, to allow a little more flexibility in terms of the types of investment that can be invested in, under the
particular Trustee Act.

I think that this is done, in part, to reflect contemporary investment markets and to provide for more
effective administration of trust investments by the trustees, for the trust beneficiaries. I tabled today the
annual report, it is right up-to-date, I am really glad to have it, until the end of March 1994 if the trustee, and
Ms. Theriault in that job is doing a good job looking after the interests of people who are not able to look after
their own interests. That would give the trustee and any other trustee arrangements just that little bit more
flexibility.

I guess that is really all I need to say, it is just to modernize it, bring it up-to-date. It has been quite a
while and we think it is time for the change and, Mr. Speaker, I commend the bill to all honourable members.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Hants West.

MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Yes, Mr. Speaker, with reference to second reading of Bill No. 112, I have
very few remarks to make on this because we did, indeed, as the Minister of Justice has stated, amend the
Provincial Finance Act in our earlier session. We were certainly aware at that time of why those changes
should be made. As the minister suggested in his remarks, this applies to trust companies.

However, as the minister has pointed out, there are other instruments in which the government invests
and other pension funds, et cetera, where a wider spectrum of investments is certainly to the advantage of that
particular trust or pension fund. So I don’t know if there are any remaining to be amended. I am not sure in
my own mind whether the Workers’ Compensation Fund has been amended as yet but that would certainly
be another one that should be following the lead established by the Department of Finance, as I say, in
providing, I should not say a looser criteria but a broader criteria for investing and certainly to the advantage
of the particular fund.

Just in passing, Mr. Speaker, I took a look at the Act itself, the Trustee Act and reading through that
it is quite obvious that it has not been amended for some considerable time. We are talking about the
Dominion of Canada and we are talking about the Young Women’s Christian Association of Halifax bonds
bearing the date of March 1936, et cetera, and you can go through this and look at the different investments
and certainly they are not investments that reflect the financial picture in 1994. So we will be pleased in this
caucus to pass Bill No. 112 through second reading and perhaps listen with interest to any representations
that are made in the Law Amendments Committee.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the New Democratic Party.

MS. ALEXA MCDONOUGH: Mr. Speaker, my comments at this stage in debate will be very brief.
The minister has said, on introducing these amendments to the Trustee Act, that it merely brings the
provisions of the Trustee Act in line with the changes made to the Provincial Finance Act in the spring session
of the Legislature as it relates to the whole issue of restrictions on how money is invested. That may very well
be the case, but I would have to say at this point that we had some considerable concerns about the provisions
that were introduced in the spring and frankly have not had sufficient time - this having been only introduced
yesterday - to look more carefully at whether the same kinds of concerns are attendant to the amendments that
are now before us with respect to the Trustee Act.

For that reason, I guess the honest thing to say at this point, is that it is really not clear to us whether
this is nothing but a straightforward kind of common-sense change or whether in fact the same kinds of
concerns that we had with respect to changes to the Provincial Finance Act would apply. I know the minister
has said that this really just brings it in line - I don’t want to misrepresent him in any way - but basically that
the amendments reflect the trend in other Canadian Provinces over the past decade. Well, some trends in other
Canadian Provinces are things that may be improvements from some people’s points of view and then some
trends may in fact be very ill-advised. So, we would like, frankly, to have more opportunity to really look at
this more carefully.

Since we are faced with this bill being before us today and not having had sufficient time to really
consult, I think it is fair to say for the record that we reserve the right to consult with people. We will certainly
be open to hearing any concerns that are brought forward at the Law Amendments Committee that may speak
to some of those concerns that we had with respect to the earlier amendments. I think at the very least it has
to be said that the changes introduced to the Provincial Finance Act - and I assume here as well - give a great
deal more discretion and power to the minister in making decisions about how to invest money than has been
the case in the past.

I guess that very often sends up some alarm signals, or at least raises the concern that if a case can be
made for greater discretion - and that may be a reasonable proposition - then it also, I think, very often brings
with it the necessity to be sure that the checks and balances are in place. If you are going to have greater
discretion then you have to have a system to ensure that there isn’t the possibility of greater abuse. Although
this government would like us to believe that patronage practices for example are a thing of the past, I think
one does not have to be unduly suspicious, paranoid, skeptical, or cynical to raise the question of whether in
the instance of there being a great deal of greater discretion with respect to how a minister can invest money
that there is the potential - I am not saying that it necessarily results in ugly, old patronage practices rearing
their head - but the potential is there, it seems to me, for those highly discretionary decisions to be made on
the basis of considerations other than what is necessarily and always in the public interest.

[1:00 p.m.]

It surely cannot be the view of this government that there does not still exist the need to ensure that
the best possible protection of the public interest is in place and that where there is the potential for abuse,
where there is the potential that a minister, in exercising her discretion or his discretion can in fact be
exercising favouritism, can be making decisions about investments that will benefit a friend or a relative or
a colleague or whatever then, at the very least, there is a heavy onus for there to be every check and balance
in place to try and cut down on potential abuse.

For that reason it may be said, the minister may argue, that the provisions that are being introduced
here for greater discretion in the amendments to the Trustee Act are reasonable. But I would say in return that
if that is the case then it may also be true to say that we need to be concerned about the fact that we have in
this province, still, a conflict of interest Act that is not nearly as stringent as it ought to be, that does not
provide as much protection of the public interest as it ought to.

So it may be that the government needs to be persuaded that in the instance of introducing greater
discretion around investment decisions by this government and its ministers, that we should also be using that
opportunity and using that as an excuse to tighten up on our conflict of interest legislation in the ways that
would provide for greater protection of the public, greater assurance that ministerial discretion will not be
used in instances where family or colleagues of a minister can benefit in ways that are clearly discriminatory
and unwarranted.

I know we are not here debating the conflict of interest legislation but I think we are looking at the
implications of a situation where surely the concern cannot be dismissed, that we have to be careful about how
ministers exercise that greater discretion when it comes to investment decisions because we have a lot of
ministers that have active contact, perhaps in many cases have formerly been employed in the investment
community, and may have very definite situations that arise where there are interests that will impinge upon
them, which will influence them, other than what is strictly in the best interest of the taxpayer or the general
public.

So, Mr. Speaker, with those comments I would simply say again that we are prepared to see it go to
Law Amendments Committee at this point but we will be looking further for indications that there is every
possible check in place on that greater discretion which this clearly does give to ministers and may or may
not feel in the final analysis that the legislation is reasonable to support. Thank you.

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

The honourable Minister of Justice.

HON. WILLIAM GILLIS: Mr. Speaker, just briefly I want to thank the speakers on the bill and I
appreciate the comments. To start with, the member for Hants West and the references to the fact that the bill
has not been changed for some time in the past. I thank the member for that and we think it is an updating.

With regard to the member for Halifax Fairview I think it is only reasonable that the member hasn’t
had much time to look at it, it has only been introduced as of yesterday. I understand where she is coming
from on that but I appreciate the cooperation so we can move the bill on to Law Amendments Committee. If
there are interested parties or organizations, I am sure they will make their views known there and of course,
we always have the safety valve of a couple of more stages in the House, Committee of the Whole House on
Bills and later a third reading. I am sure if there is anything on that, it can be checked out. I will check out
Hansard and the debate on the Provincial Finance Act especially as it relates to giving more freedom on
investments to learn more of the concerns that were raised at that time.

The only other thing I want to say before I sit down is by perspective, I guarantee the House as best
as I can humanly do, that nobody will take any partisan or any kind of advantage in rewarding friends under
investments under this bill. We have a trustee who carries out her job very honourably and conscientiously.
I am sure that that person would have no part - and I am not suggesting that the member was implying any
malfeasance on her part - but any connection that I have, and I think I can speak for the government too, that
we are making an effort to get the best people and the best value. The matter of friends and family benefitting
is out the window, as far as I am concerned and for whatever time I am in the job, I will certainly keep a
careful eye on my part of the jurisdiction. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for second reading of Bill No. 112. Would all those in favour of the
motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

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

The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.

MR. ALLISTER SURETTE: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 113.

Bill No. 113 - Natural Products Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Agriculture and Marketing.

HON. WAYNE GAUDET: Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to have the opportunity to make a few remarks
and to explain to members of the House the proposed amendment for second reading.

The Natural Products Act provides the authority for the establishment of marketing boards to assist
in the orderly marketing of natural products at the provincial and national levels. The bill provides as well
for the collection of levies in support of marketing boards’ activities, including initiatives for marketing and
production research. Currently, there are marketing boards established in Nova Scotia for 10 commodities.

Industry is becoming more actively involved in funding research in marketing initiatives at the local
and national levels in partnership agreements with agencies such as agriculture in Agri-Food Canada, and
the Nova Scotian Agriculture College.

At present, non-marketing board groups such as the Canadian Horticulture Council, the Canadian
Cattlemen Association and their provincial counterparts, have no effective legislated authority to collect levies
in support of research and marketing. These organizations have approached Ministers of Agriculture at the
provincial and national levels, requesting that the marketing board authority for levies be extended to include
other non-marketing board agencies. So Ministers of Agriculture have agreed to this request and have begun
the process of amending their respective legislation as required to provide for this authority. The bill, An Act
to amend the Natural Products Act, incorporates this authority into legislation for Nova Scotia.

Clause 1 of the bill provides the authority for Nova Scotia to enter into agreements for the
implementation of national programs of research and promotion. Two existing examples of the types of
programs we are talking about are the milk and beef promotion ads that we see on television. Apple producers
in Canada are currently discussing a national promotion campaign as well.

 

 

Clause 2 of this bill extends the existing authority for the collection of levies and support of research
and promotion to those non-marketing board commodities which do not presently have this authority, Mr.
Speaker. Examples of non-marketing board groups would be the blueberry, apple, and sheep industries.

I should point out that this is enabling legislation only. Should a commodity group decide to develop
a program, they would then further . . .

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. The noise level in this Chamber is excessively high, please.

MR. GAUDET: Mr. Speaker, they would then submit their plan for approval to the Natural Products
Marketing Council, as well as their request to collect levies in support of the program.

The Natural Products Marketing Council is a five member agency appointed by government to oversee
the workings of orderly marketing systems. A similar watchdog group exists in all provinces and at the
national level. Industry has come to government with this request and I am pleased that my government has
agreed to cooperate with industry in accommodating their wishes. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Pictou West.

MR. DONALD MCINNES: Mr. Speaker, I rise to speak on an Act to Amend Chapter 308 of the
Revised Statutes, 1989, the Natural Products Act. I think the minister, in his opening remarks on Bill No. 113
has explained very well the purpose of having this bill before the Legislature today. It is my understanding
that the various groups had expressed concerns to the Ministers of Agriculture from across Canada to ask that
this enabling legislation be put in place in each province.

As the minister did explain, the Natural Products Marketing Act covers, I believe it is 10 commodity
boards now but there are some natural products that are not covered. The previous legislation, gave authority,
of course, to those boards for it to do research and promotion. I think it is important, I think the minister
mentioned blueberries, the cattlemen’s association and a couple of other groups that were interested in being
able to levy their own producers or their own members to levy funds so they could do research and also
promotion for their particular products.

I must say I was pleased to have the opportunity to sit on the Natural Products Marketing Board in
Nova Scotia for quite a number of years prior to my having the honour of coming to the Legislature. I think
it is an excellent board that they have and our caucus is very pleased. Our Agriculture Critic is not here with
us today, but I know that the member for Kings North would also be very supportive of this legislation. We
will certainly be supporting it on second reading.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Halifax Atlantic.

MR. ROBERT CHISHOLM: Mr. Speaker, I just want to make a few brief comments on Bill No. 113.
Unfortunately, I don’t have the same level of information or experience on this issue as do the current and
former Ministers of Agriculture and, for that reason, for a change I will limit my remarks and wait for us to
hear more about this bill at the Law Amendments Committee stage.

Certainly in respect to the remarks made by the minister and the former minister, it appears to be a
change that has been promoted by a number of agencies within the industry and, therefore, makes sense in
terms of promoting their ability to better represent their members, represent their industry and promote their
products and develop new products and so on. So I think it would be very hard, therefore, to not speak in
support.

But as sometimes happens, when you don’t know all that much about it you have to leave yourself with
the option of having a little bit of time to consult with people in the industry. We are commencing to do that
and leave ourselves the opportunity to participate in the Law Amendments Committee and find out whether
there are any concerns that may be raised by various parties and at that point perhaps in combination or
whatever we may be able to comment further and work with the minister, if there are any inadequacies in this
legislation and we can perhaps see that those are addressed but I think having had the opportunity over the
last two sessions to deal with legislation brought forward by this minister, he usually does his homework and
generally covers all those bases so we don’t anticipate any problems. With those few brief remarks I will be
voting in support of this legislation moving forward to the Law Amendments Committee stage.

[1:15 p.m.]

MR. SPEAKER: If I recognize the minister if will be to close the debate.

The honourable Minister of Agriculture and Marketing.

HON. WAYNE GAUDET: Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the honourable members for their supporting
comments, and I move second reading of Bill No. 113.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for second reading of Bill No. 113. Would all those in favour of the
motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

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

The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.

MR. ALLISTER SURETTE: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 114.

Bill No. 114 - Municipal Reform Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Municipal Affairs.

HON. SANDRA JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise today to move second reading of Bill No.
114 and I would like to make a few comments prior to making that motion. This bill that we are dealing with,
Bill No. 114, is the municipal reform bill. It is a major piece of legislation. Since assuming government 16
months ago, we have pursued an unprecedented reform agenda. We are committed to providing relevant,
efficient programs and services to Nova Scotians at a price we can all afford. We are radically changing the
way we do things to bring government in line with what Nova Scotians need and want. Municipal reform has
been talked about by nearly every provincial government for the past 50 years.

After extensive consultation this government is now taking action. Our commitment has always been
to work towards a Nova Scotia made up of economically strong, safe and viable municipalities. Mr. Speaker,
we are living up that commitment, we are putting in place a comprehensive strategy for municipal reform.
We are taking a number of major steps forward towards a provincial, municipal relationship that will provide
the backbone of a revitalized Nova Scotia well into the 21st Century.

We committed to a process of consultation and we have kept that promise. Nearly one year ago, within
six months of taking office, we released a comprehensive discussion paper on municipal reform. Since that
time, we have consulted widely on that discussion paper. Earlier this year, I along with senior staff of my
department met with each and every one of the 66 municipalities in the Province of Nova Scotia. (Applause)

Mr. Speaker, we asked for the municipalities’ input, we listened to their comments, we heard their
concerns, and we have now acted on them. We committed to a logical process of service exchange and we
have kept that promise. This legislation, the Municipal Reform Bill, provides for the first phase of reform.
We committed to a cost-effective solution and we have kept that promise. There is only one taxpayer. We
cannot shift the blame or the financial burden from one level of government to the next. We are all in the
same boat. There are two major elements in the Municipal Reform Bill, the exchange of a number of
government services between the province and municipalities which includes the first step of a social reform
system in Nova Scotia and there are significant reform measures and municipal legislation that further
empowers municipal governments in their ability to act independently of the province.

Let me begin with the provincial-municipal service exchange first. Service exchange involves a
reallocation of services between the provincial and municipal level of government and a restructuring of a
financial relationship between them as well. This restructuring will reduce the number of cost-shared
programs. The objectives of provincial-municipal service exchange are: (1) to create a strong financially
viable local government; (2) to develop a fair, clearer provincial-municipal partnership and (3) to rationalize
services delivered by all governments.

The service exchange plan is both financially feasible and controllable. It enables many of the
government’s reform initiatives to occur. For example, responsibilities transferred to the province in the areas
of home care, licensed nursing homes and homes for the aged are required to advance the Minister of Health’s
reform. The plan also helps to level the playing field in terms of service responsibilities. For example, under
service exchange, rural municipalities will assume financial responsibilities for police protection. Under
service exchange, as well, the province will assume responsibility for all existing municipal cost-sharing on
child welfare, licensed nursing homes and homes for the aged, court houses and justice expenses, registry of
deeds, home care and boards of health.

The province will assume 80 per cent of the cost, up from 66.67 per cent, for homes for special care
such as adult residential centres, which are under the jurisdiction of Community Services. In keeping with
government’s efforts to integrate into the community individuals who are mentally handicapped or mentally
disabled, the province will contribute an additional $6 million to offset municipal expenditures for alternative
placements.

 

 

The municipalities will assume responsibilities for policing and suburban subdivision roads. The
following grant programs to the municipalities will cease: public transit; planning; building inspection;
recreation; emergency funding and operating grants. An equalization grant to assist poorer municipalities will
be established.

Service exchange will be phased in over a four year period, as requested by the municipalities and this
is what we heard when we did our consultation around the province. This will help minimize the impact on
the municipal units. In this bill, Mr. Speaker, we are proposing as well, to amend 31 different Statutes. Many
provisions are not to come into effect until April 1, 1995. The majority of these are sections that relate
primarily to the service exchange.

Major elements of service exchange covered in the Municipal Reform Bill are court houses in Clause
19, registries in Clause 96, the equalization grants in Clause 66 through to 71, the transitional provisions in
Clause 76 and Social Services Act changes in Clause 102 and Clause 103. Policing is covered in Clause 86
and Clause 87 and roads, in particular, are covered in Clause 84 and Clause 92.

The Municipal Reform Bill deals with improvements in general municipal legislation. A number, Mr.
Speaker, of new powers are introduced and included at the request of the Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities
in this bill. These include the power to regulate exotic pets, more enforceable provisions covering dangerous
and unsightly premises, broader dog control provisions, detailed noise controlled authorities and specific
powers for major tree sanitation programs.

Mr. Speaker, this bill also includes several provisions to increase final decision making to the local
municipal level. These include: removing the requirement for ministerial approval for most by-laws;
requirements to notify the public concerning by-laws; making some by-law powers into a simple procedure;
decreasing the number of land sales that require the minister’s approval; and other deregulation in many
instances.

Rural municipalities, of course, are given the power to deal with the roads that they will become
responsible for. Municipal units as well, Mr. Speaker, are also given the opportunity to be free of liability for
claims arising out of sewer and water system problems, unless neglect is shown. This is another request from
the municipalities.

In these changes we have arrived at meeting municipal requests to decrease provincial control over
municipal actions and increase local independence and accountability. This bill will enable more control on
the local municipal level, which is what was requested of us by the UNSM and the municipalities when we
travelled around the province. In actual fact, some of these are as many as 10 to 15 years old.

Further consultation with municipalities, with specific municipal units and with municipal
administrators will be held to deal with the implementation of service exchange and with the need for further
reform of all municipal legislation. While service exchange will alleviate many municipal problems, Mr.
Speaker, and it will produce a fairer and more rational municipal system, it will not solve all the problems.
Work on municipal reform will have to continue as both the province and municipal units struggle to deal
with the financial problems affecting all levels of government.

 

 

Mr. Speaker, there is a need for municipal reform and municipalities have requested it. We listened
and now we are taking action. The service exchange is a good package which addresses many of the concerns
we heard when we consulted with the municipalities over the last 18 months. Suggestions by municipalities
have improved fairness and acceptability.

Mr. Speaker, I support this bill to go on to the Law Amendments Committee. I know that due to the
lateness of the hour today, I would also suggest we adjourn the House to sit another time. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion for the adjournment of debate has been made. Would all those in favour
of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

The House is now adjourned to sit again on Monday at the hour of 7:00 p.m.

[The House rose at 1:27 p.m.]

 

 

NOTICES OF MOTION UNDER RULE 32(3)

HOUSE ORDER NO. 89

(Tabled on Thursday, June 30, 1994)

By: Mr. George Archibald (Kings North)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move that an order of this House do issue for a return
showing, with respect to the Department of Justice:

(1) The total number of inmates sentenced to time in Nova Scotia correctional centres now on
temporary leave because there are no beds for them in the correctional centres;

(2) The total number of inmates on temporary leave who have been sentenced to prison time of two
years or less for sex offences; and

(3) A copy of studies done or public reports reviewed by Justice Department officials relating to the
electronic monitoring of prisoners in Nova Scotia.

HOUSE ORDER NO. 92

By: Mr. Brooke Taylor (Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move that an order of this House do issue for a return
showing, with respect to the Department of Natural Resources:

(1) A copy of all correspondence between the Office of the Minister and the Federal Minister of
Natural Resources concerning discussions on a new federal/provincial forestry agreement to replace the one
which expires March 31, 1995.

HOUSE ORDER NO. 93

By: Mr. Donald McInnes (Pictou West)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move that an order of this House do issue for a return
showing, with respect to the Economic Renewal Agency:

(1) A copy of all correspondence between the Board of Directors for the Ski Cape Smokey Society
and the Office of the Minister for the Economic Renewal Agency for the year 1994 up to and including today,
October 28th.

HOUSE ORDER NO. 94

By: Mr. Donald McInnes (Pictou West)

I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move that an order of this House do issue for a return
showing, with respect to the Economic Renewal Agency:

(1) A copy of the agreement signed between the Province of Nova Scotia and Captain Donald Barr.