Assemblée Législative de la Nouvelle-Écosse

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HALIFAX, WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 16, 1994



Fifty-sixth General Assembly



Second Session



2:00 P.M.



SPEAKER



Hon. Paul MacEwan



DEPUTY SPEAKER



Mr. Gerald O’Malley






MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. We can commence this afternoon’s proceedings at this time. Before
we get into the daily agenda, several members have indicated that they would like to introduce guests that are
in our midst today. I will call first on the honourable Minister of Human Resources.



The honourable Minister of Human Resources.



HON. ELEANOR NORRIE: Mr. Speaker, to you and through you to members of the House, we have
visitors in your gallery today from the Republic of Latvia. They are a Deputy Director of the Latvian School
of Public Administration - I am going to make an attempt at pronouncing these names properly - Ridds
Bruners, and also an officer from the Ministry of State Reform, Olga Grazule. (Applause)



For information purposes, to inform the House, they are visiting Nova Scotia to study the systems and
processes of the federal and provincial governments in order to assist their country through a period of
government reform. They are visiting the Department of Human Resources today and I would thank you for
the warm welcome to our guests from Latvia.



MR. SPEAKER: Would you please stand up, guests from Latvia. (Applause)



Are there not more than two of them.



MRS. NORRIE: The other people are staff from the Department of Human Resources.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Annapolis.






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MR. EARLE RAYFUSE: Mr. Speaker, I would like to introduce to you and through you a friend of
mine seated in the east gallery, a resident of my community and a former resident of Dartmouth where he was
a dispatcher for Thompson’s Transfer. I would like for the members to give him a good round of applause,
my friend Glenn Fritz from Port George. (Applause)



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



MR. RUSSELL MACKINNON: Mr. Speaker, I would like to introduce to you and through you to all
members of the House, Mr. Paul MacLellan who is the Chief Engineer with the Cape Breton District School
Board. Mr. MacLellan has been very active on the problem Floral Heights water contamination and he is here
in the gallery for a few moments today. I would ask that he would receive the warm welcome of the House.
(Applause)



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Community Services.



HON. JAMES SMITH: Mr. Speaker, I would like to take this opportunity to introduce to you and other
members of the House, sitting in your gallery, 12 students from Dartmouth East, Ecole du Carrefour. They
are visiting here with their leader, Gerard Cormier. I would ask them to stand and receive the warm welcome
of the House. (Applause)



MR. SPEAKER: We will commence the daily routine.



PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS



PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Justice.



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



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



Bill No. 116 - House of Assembly Act.



Bill No. 117 - Innovation Corporation Act.



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



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



TABLING REPORTS, REGULATIONS AND OTHER PAPERS



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Municipal Affairs.



HON. SANDRA JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to table, on behalf of the honourable members
opposite, the names of the persons approached for the metro amalgamation, the coordinating position, as well
as their business addresses, their phone numbers, their CVs and a copy of the expression of interest for the
coordinator of the metro municipal amalgamation.



MR. SPEAKER: The report is tabled.



STATEMENTS BY MINISTERS



GOVERNMENT NOTICES OF MOTION



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Fisheries.



RESOLUTION NO. 1015



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



Whereas today marks the coming into force of the United Nations Law of the Sea Convention and some
67 nations that have ratified this historic agreement; and



Whereas Canada was a leader in negotiating many key sections of the text, particularly the sections
regarding marine environmental protection and the conservation of living resources; and



Whereas the treaty adds approximately 1.5 million square kilometres of new territory to Canada;



Therefore be it resolved that this House recommend ratification of the United Nations Law of the Sea
Convention to our Prime Minister and thereby demonstrate Canada’s resolve to work cooperatively with the
international community to respect and protect the rights of the coastal states to manage living resources on
a sustainable basis.



Mr. Speaker, I ask waiver of notice on this motion.



MR. SPEAKER: There is a request of waiver of notice which required unanimous agreement.



Is there agreement?



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.



INTRODUCTION OF BILLS



NOTICES OF MOTION



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the Opposition.






RESOLUTION NO. 1016



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



Whereas Beauchesne 6th Edition, Paragraph 168(2) states, “In order to ensure complete impartiality
the Speaker has usually relinquished all affiliation with parliamentary party. The Speaker does not attend any
party caucus nor take part in any outside partisan political activity;”; and



Whereas it is a long-standing convention of this House that the Speaker absents himself from his
Party’s caucus and from participation in partisan political activities while the Legislature is sitting; and



Whereas the Speaker of this House is reported to have attended a meeting of the Liberal caucus today;



Therefore be it resolved that the Speaker remind himself of this long-standing convention and abide
by it.



MR. SPEAKER: Well, I know of no such convention but, in any event, the request was to attend at a
group shot for the December edition of a newsletter, a portraiture under the heading, Merry Christmas from
the Government Caucus. Now, if the honourable member is opposed to that . . .



The notice is tabled.



The honourable Leader of the New Democratic Party.



RESOLUTION NO. 1017



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



Whereas the Municipal Affairs Minister has tried to justify an untendered contract for $225,000 by
stating she thought the Premier had authorized her to break the procurement rules; and



Whereas those rules were put in place to protect taxpayers’ interests and to safeguard the right of
business, professional and other firms to fair competition for government contracts; and



Whereas something is rotten in the Province of Nova Scotia when ministers believe, as the now
Opposition Leader once did, that the Premier can personally overrule laws, rules and guidelines that protect
the public interest from political abuse;



Therefore be it resolved that this House urges the Premier to disavow any suggestion that, with or
without his permission, ministers can break the open tendering directive and rules which, one year ago, he
forcefully promised to enforce.



MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.



The honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley.



RESOLUTION NO. 1018



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



Whereas residents of Kemptown, Colchester County, agreed less than two months ago to allow
Kemptown to be the home of an $8 million garbage landfill; and



Whereas this proposed Kemptown landfill would have been home to all refuse collected in Colchester
County; and



Whereas a study recently released by the provincial Department of the Environment contains a
recommendation that, if adopted, would see the Kemptown landfill play host to garbage from 18
municipalities across northern Nova Scotia;



Therefore be it resolved that the Minister of the Environment not keep the residents of Kemptown,
Colchester County, in the lurch but put forth a solid waste management plan that will not see Kemptown
become the garbage capital of northern Nova Scotia.



MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.



The honourable member for Cape Breton South.



RESOLUTION NO. 1019



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



Whereas the Sydney area has a rich sporting heritage; and



Whereas the Sydney Panthers Bantam football team made their 8th appearance in the provincial
championships this past weekend; and



Whereas the Sydney Panthers continued their winning tradition by capturing their 7th provincial title
in 11 years;



Therefore be it resolved that this House congratulate the Sydney Panthers football team, their coach,
their families and supporters for their success in this provincial championship.



Mr. Speaker, I ask for waiver of notice on this motion.



MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed that notice be waived?



It is agreed.



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



The motion is carried.



The honourable member for Lunenburg.



RESOLUTION NO. 1020



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 the present government campaigned on the basis of good government and job creation; and



Whereas the government’s role in job creation is to foster a business climate that is conducive to job
growth; and



Whereas an independent economic think-tank has described employment growth for Nova Scotia in
early 1994 as “nothing less than spectacular, up by 9% in the first part of the year.”;



Therefore be it resolved that we congratulate this government for sticking to its job creation agenda,
to put Nova Scotians back to work.



MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.



[2:15 p.m.]



The honourable member for Kings North.



RESOLUTION NO. 1021



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



Whereas Premier Savage announced the sale of Sydney Steel in an area of this province last week that
he did not even know which member of his caucus represented; and



Whereas in fact the Sydney steel plant saddles the constituencies of Cape Breton South and Cape
Breton Nova and it would be quite a walk from the constituency of Cape Breton The Lakes; and



Whereas once again the Premier showed his ignorance of Nova Scotia’s political map in an interview
on the radio in Sydney a few days ago and in the process extremely annoyed some plant workers;



Therefore be it resolved that the Premier on his return from China take a tour of the Cape Breton
region and take a few geography lessons from his Cape Breton caucus and learn a little more about the major
region of this province and the people and the issues which concern them.



Mr. Speaker, I could table an electoral map of Nova Scotia that may help the Premier in deciding who
is there. (Interruption) Yes, I request waiver of notice. And here is a list of the caucus, too.






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



Is it agreed?



I hear several Noes.



The notice is tabled.



The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid.



RESOLUTION NO. 1022



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



Whereas child care centres have been concerned and angry by advice that the salary enhancement grant
is to be reduced from $3.25 to $3.15 a day, effective April 1, 1995, as part of this government’s across-the-board cuts in public services; and



Whereas in response, the minister has merely confirmed that child care wages themselves are not
subject to the 3 per cent roll-back without specifically addressing proposed cuts to the salary enhancement
grant; and



Whereas so far this government has done no better than Donald Cameron, providing only 50 new
subsidized spaces a year, breaking promises to meet the need for new spaces and bring salaries above the
poverty level;



Therefore be it resolved that this House urges the Community Services Minister to specifically assure
parents and child care centres that the salary enhancement grant will not be reduced and, instead, to work to
fulfil the long-promised end of subsistence wages for trained and dedicated child care workers.



MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.



The honourable member for Guysborough-Port Hawkesbury.



RESOLUTION NO. 1023



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



Whereas Danielle Bond of Port Hawkesbury has been diagnosed as having a rare form of kidney
cancer; and



Whereas through community efforts, her parents’ wish for public awareness has increased and the
residents and businesses throughout Guysborough-Port Hawkesbury have raised approximately $5,000 to date,
through prize bingos, community jars and numerous projects; and



Whereas this is a true example of Nova Scotia’s spirit and community caring;



Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate the residents of Guysborough-Port
Hawkesbury for their compassion and support of the Bond family and that we extend best wishes to Danielle
Bond and her family.



Mr. Speaker, I request 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 Hants West.



RESOLUTION NO. 1024



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’s message to his caucus members, who may wish to vote according to the best
interests of their constituents is, fish or cut bait; and



Whereas the House Leader last November stated that there is no rule that says any member can’t vote
their conscience but it is also a Party matter in deciding whether or not you are going to save a government;
and



Whereas it is highly doubtful that losing one vote out of a caucus of 41 will topple the Savage
Government, proving that the Premier’s math is as good as his knowledge of Cape Breton;



Therefore be it resolved that when the Liberal Party finally holds its annual meeting and leadership
review, that the Premier consider whether it might be beneficial for his fish or cut bait rule to apply to himself,
for the sake of the reputation of his Party.



MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.



The honourable member for Halifax Atlantic.



RESOLUTION NO. 1025



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



Whereas the Supply and Services management auditors consulted 4 non-unionized employees, 16
unionized employees and 25 managers, while the transition team had six Supply and Services managers but
no union representation or consultation; and



Whereas the transition had resulted in two more senior directors than the auditors recommended; and



Whereas the few managers losing their jobs are to be placed elsewhere, but dozens of non-management
employees were suddenly fired, despite the auditors’ recommendation of gradual reduction over two years;



Therefore be it resolved that this House condemns the top-heavy management bias of changes in the
Department of Supply and Services, and the cold, inhumane treatment of men and women in low level
positions who have given as many as 23 years of loyal service.



MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.



The honourable Leader of the Opposition.



RESOLUTION NO. 1026



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



Whereas neither the Nova Scotia Government nor the Nova Scotia Casino Project Committee has been
willing to answer questions about the socio-economic impact of casinos on this province; and



Whereas similarly there are many unanswered questions with respect to the process of selecting a
casino operator in Nova Scotia, as well as the lack of information which has been made available to the public;
and



Whereas the Nova Scotia public is very much opposed to the establishment of casinos in the province;



Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Government explain why it is doing business with an
organization which is not open or responsive to community interests.



MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.



The honourable Leader of the New Democratic Party.



RESOLUTION NO. 1027



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



Whereas the 1993 Liberal platform stated that, quote, honesty, openness, integrity and accountability
will permeate all government dealings under John Savage; and



Whereas the now Premier lacks the openness, accountability and self-confidence to tolerate dissent
from Liberal MLAs, even on far-reaching 180 degree turns such as the so-called municipal-provincial service
exchange; and



Whereas contrary to advice the Premier may have recently received in China, dictatorship and my way
or the doorway are practices that a parliamentary democracy cannot endure;



Therefore be it resolved that this House regrets the Premier’s evident belief that only the most dire
threats and punishments prevent many Liberal MLAs from opposing this government’s broken promises and
rigid pursuit of Donald Cameron’s Conservative agenda.



MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.



The honourable member for Victoria.



RESOLUTION NO. 1028



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



Whereas members opposite have recently cast aspersions in the press as to the Minister of Health’s
competence; and



Whereas next August our Health Minister, with former United States President Gerald Ford and 30
other physicians from around the world, will be honoured by the San Francisco Department of Health; and



Whereas our Health Minister trained more than 2,000 paramedics and helped establish the Emergency
Response System for Los Angeles County that is now considered the standard by which other systems are
judged.



Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House applaud this fine Canadian for his contribution
to emergency medicine and continue to support him in his efforts to provide Nova Scotians with a new and
better health care system. (Applause)



MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.



The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid.



RESOLUTION NO. 1029



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 Liberal Party paid an unknown amount to bring the Premier to Guysborough County,
where he announced an exclusive Cabinet committee to address the very real employment crisis there; and



Whereas the member for Guysborough-Port Hawkesbury now foresees a bright future for his
constituents, in the fast-growing Liberal red and white sign painting industry; and



Whereas Guysborough residents who suffered the abuse of Allan MacEachen’s patronage machine and
the Liberals’ devastating Kirby Report on the Fishery, now face the combined hit of more Axworthy cutbacks
and two-tiered social assistance;



Therefore be it resolved the member for Guysborough-Port Hawkesbury should be less concerned with
getting a few days work for his constituents to paint Liberal signs and focused more on the economic and
fiscal whirlwind the Liberal Governments are unleashing upon those hard-pressed, hardworking people.
(Interruptions)



MR. SPEAKER: I would like to read that motion myself before it is tabled. I certainly couldn’t hear
it. May I see the resolution, please.



The notice is tabled.



The honourable member for Guysborough-Port Hawkesbury.



RESOLUTION NO. 1030



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



Whereas volunteers are the backbone of small communities throughout Nova Scotia; and



Whereas the Aulds Cove Fire Department and Ladies Auxiliary work hard to enhance community life;
and



Whereas they will be holding their 25th Anniversary celebrations this Saturday, November 19, 1994;



Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate the members of the Aulds Cove
Fire Department and Ladies Auxiliary for 25 years of service to the community.



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



MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for 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 Bedford-Fall River.



RESOLUTION NO. 1031



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



Whereas the government is committed to providing government services in a cost-efficient manner;
and



Whereas the government is also committed to the development of information technologies that will
enhance our position in this emerging market; and



Whereas the Department of Transportation and Communications’ proposed pilot projects to provide
electronic kiosks is a demonstration of our government’s commitment to these two goals;



Therefore be it resolved that the members of the House commend the Department of Transportation
and Communications for their innovation and commitment to the future.



MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.



The honourable member for Annapolis.



RESOLUTION NO. 1032



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



Whereas many people do not recognize the important economic impact that agriculture makes to the
economy in Nova Scotia; and



Whereas a number of jobs are created directly and indirectly by this industry; and



Whereas the Annapolis County Federation of Agriculture recognizes the need to help people
understand this important industry so that the public can make informed decisions about agriculture and the
food they buy and has taken a leadership role in the development of special awareness and education
programs;



Therefore be it resolved that this House of Assembly congratulates the Minister of Agriculture and
Marketing on these new programs and encourages him to continue to cooperate with farm organizations for
the development of agriculture in Annapolis County, Nova Scotia.



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



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



RESOLUTION NO. 1033



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



Whereas the member from Hants West is a duly elected member of the Legislative Assembly of Nova
Scotia, who prides himself in his consistency of belief; and



Whereas with self-righteous vigour, the member now believes public consultation is an indispensable
part of the political process; and



Whereas this member did not believe public consultations would serve any useful purpose when he
spoke at the Community Services Committee on Thursday, August 19, 1993;



Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House urge the member for Hants West to apologize
for his flip-flop and sudden conversion of belief.



MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.



The honourable member for Eastern Shore.



RESOLUTION NO. 1034



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



Whereas the people of the Eastern Shore have a long tradition of community cooperation in all
pursuits; and



Whereas on Saturday, November 19th and Sunday, November 20th, Seaside Christmas Open Houses
will be held by businesses dealing in gifts, crafts, art, and antiques from Musquodoboit Harbour to the Salmon
River Bridge; and



Whereas this new Old Fashioned Seaside Christmas tradition is four years old and continues to
increase in attendance each year due to the hard work of the people involved;



Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House applaud the efforts of these 10 Eastern Shore
businesses for their enhancement to the tourism profile of the Eastern Shore and encourage the people to visit
the Eastern Shore this weekend.



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



MR. SPEAKER: There has been a request for 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.



That concludes the daily routine, we will now advance to the Orders of the Day. The Oral Question
Period today will run for an hour and one-half, that is from the hour of 2:30 p.m. to the hour of 4:00 p.m.






[2:30 p.m.]



ORDERS OF THE DAY



ORAL QUESTIONS PUT BY MEMBERS



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the Opposition.



MUN. AFFS. - MIN.: MISTAKES - PREMIER EXPLAIN



MR. TERENCE DONAHOE: Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Premier. Yesterday, as a
consequence of a very considerable examination and cross-examination of events involving the Minister of
Municipal Affairs and an untendered $225,000 contract and related matters, the Premier had a great many
things to say both here and in the press. The Premier said, among many other things, that there were mistakes
made by the minister and I wonder if the Premier would please explain to this House and the taxpayers the
mistakes that he believes were made by the Minister of Municipal Affairs?



HON. JOHN SAVAGE (The Premier): Mr. Speaker, what I will do is tell you that the investigations
I am doing into the so-called affair are not yet complete. I hope to have them complete by tomorrow and I will
then present them to this House.



MR. DONAHOE: By way of supplementary, then, I would ask the Premier if he might help me, and
the taxpayers, understand this. The Premier not only indicated, as I said a moment ago, that he thought the
Minister of Municipal Affairs made mistakes, but he also said that there were contradictions between himself
and the Minister of Municipal Affairs. His words, in fact, were, I realize our stories do not jibe and that is very
painful to me.



Well, I think it is more than painful to the taxpayers of Nova Scotia, Mr. Speaker, I think it is quite
frightening. I would ask the Premier if he will tell this House and the taxpayers of Nova Scotia just on what
points is it that he has concluded, having already made that statement and therefore having reached the
conclusion that the stories don’t jibe, on what points do the stories and recollection of events, as between
himself and the Minister of Municipal Affairs, not jibe?



THE PREMIER: Mr. Speaker, I will repeat my previous answer. Probably tomorrow I will give an
answer to the issue. Until that time, I do not intend making any premature comments.



MR. DONAHOE: Well, it is most interesting that it did not take the Premier longer than a few minutes
to throw a member out of his caucus on questionable grounds.



AN HON. MEMBER: Question.



MR. DONAHOE: Oh, indeed, we have so many questions. (Interruptions)



MR. SPEAKER: Question, please.



MR. DONAHOE: The trouble is, Mr. Speaker, the questions, unfortunately, in this instance, seem not
to elicit any answers.



The Premier, Mr. Speaker, also said yesterday, when asked point blank and directly, that there
appeared to be very serious distinctions between his description of events and that provided by the Minister
of Municipal Affairs. When asked which description of events we are to believe, he said we are to believe his
description of events. I ask the Premier if the preliminary investigation he has done to this point still enabled
him to maintain that position and that we should, and the taxpayers of Nova Scotia should, to this point at
least, believe his description of events in favour of that offered by the Minister of Municipal Affairs. Is that
still his position?



THE PREMIER: Mr. Speaker, this time tomorrow, hopefully, I will be able to give the kind of
explanation that will satisfy both the taxpayers of Nova Scotia and our incoherent Opposition Leader.



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



MUN. AFFS.: UNTENDERED CONTRACT - REASON



MS. ALEXA MCDONOUGH: Mr. Speaker, my question is also for the Premier. The Municipal
Affairs Minister has stated that she thought she had the Premier’s permission to violate public tendering
requirements before she announced the $0.25 million super-city amalgamation contract to Grant Morash at
Deloitte & Touche. My question to the Premier is this, what actions or statements by the Premier would have
led any minister to believe that he would grant permission to award an untendered contract to anyone in
violation of government policy?



THE PREMIER: Mr. Speaker, I give the same answer as I have given to the Leader of the Opposition.
The questions to this are not yet complete. They will be complete tomorrow and I will then give the complete
answer.



MS. MCDONOUGH: Mr. Speaker, it is quite clear that the Premier is still buying time and pleading
silence on this one, so perhaps we could get to what this government’s position is with respect to conflicts of
interest and tendering policies.



Has the Premier made it absolutely clear to every one of his ministers that public tendering
requirements must be followed and that the Premier has no authority to authorize untendered contracts, no
more authority than anyone else?



THE PREMIER: Mr. Speaker, the government procurement policy set out by the previous government,
to its credit, in January 1992, supplemented by the policy contained in the addendum in November 29, 1993,
is the document on which we will base and continue to base our decisions on procurement.



MS. MCDONOUGH: Mr. Speaker, I would like to ask the Premier whether he has advised his
ministers what penalty they will face if they violate public tendering requirements and if so, what is that
penalty to be?



THE PREMIER: Mr. Speaker, there is not a catalogue of punishments. Obviously, this document is
important to us and this document will continue to be important to us and I will not be drawn into the petty
kind of confusion that the Leader of the New Democratic Party wishes me to.






MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Queens.



MUN. AFFS. - HFX. METRO AMALGAMATION:

 

COORDINATOR - PRESS RELEASE



MR. JOHN LEEFE: Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Premier. On November 4th the Minister of
Municipal Affairs had issued from her department a press release, the first paragraph reading, “Grant Morash,
regional managing partner for Deloitte & Touche, has been appointed coordinator for the amalgamation of
metro area municipalities into one unit, Municipal Affairs Minister Sandy Jolly announced today.”.



My question for the Premier is, was the Premier aware, prior to his departure for China on November
3rd, that is the day before that press release was issued, that the Minister of Municipal Affairs was intending
to appoint Grant Morash as coordinator for the amalgamation of metro area municipalities?



THE PREMIER: Mr. Speaker, on a point of order. That question was answered yesterday. Does
Beauchesne or Hansard or whatever have any direction as to the need to repeat something, that the question
was answered yesterday? Mr. Speaker, I will await your decision.



MR. SPEAKER: Well, without reference to Beauchesne, to quote an exact passage, I do know that a
question once having been put is not supposed to be put again. Those are the rules, they are frequently more
honoured in the breach than in the enforcement, unfortunately. I know that we very frequently have on
supplementary questions, members saying things such as, and to repeat I ask, but we do have a convention
and a rule against the placing of a question that has already been placed and so that would be the provisions
of Beauchesne on that matter, in my view.



MR. LEEFE: Mr. Speaker, not to vex you now but I would certainly appreciate having a citation so
that I can take a look at that later. I take it that the Premier is saying no and on that understanding I will ask
the Premier if he has made it abundantly clear to his ministers and to his senior managers, that is in advance
of November 3rd and in writing, that every contract which is in excess of $5,000 is to be made by virtue of
competitive tender?



THE PREMIER: Mr. Speaker, I stand once again to demonstrate the policy that is there contained with
the supplement of November 1993 and that is the policy that this government stands by.



MR. LEEFE: Mr. Speaker, the Premier confirming that to me causes me to ask the Premier this
question. That being the case, what further information does the Premier possibly require in order to
understand that his Minister of Municipal Affairs had every intention of breaching his corner stone policy on
tendering and publicly stated so through her press release? What further information does the Premier need
before he takes the only course open to him and requires the resignation of the Minister of Municipal Affairs?



THE PREMIER: Mr. Speaker, what I wish to do is to not have to retract anything that I say and
therefore I am very careful to speak only the truth in here and, therefore, I will not be drawn into other issues.
I do not want to get involved in the kind of statements that other people on this side of the bench and previous
governments have had to say when they said, quite frankly, I have not been all that truthful. That is not my
objective and I do not wish to be in that boat and I will answer those questions tomorrow.



MR. SPEAKER: Before I call on the next speaker, in answer to the question for the citation, it is point
number eight, under the 1975 General Principles outlined by the Speaker of the House of Commons, at
Paragraph 409(8) of Beauchesne. The quotation is, “A question that has previously been answered ought not
to be asked again.”.



The next question, the honourable Leader of the Opposition.



MUN. AFFS. - MIN.: TENDERING POLICY - BREACH



MR. TERENCE DONAHOE: My question is to the Premier. I wonder if the Premier would advise this
House whether or not his investigation to this point has enabled him to conclude whether or not the Minister
of Municipal Affairs has or has not breached the tendering policy which he has now waived three times in
this Question Period this afternoon? Has she or has she not breached the tendering policy?



THE PREMIER: This tendering policy, which is obviously strange to the Leader of the Opposition
since he probably never used it, (Interruptions) Writing it is one thing, Mr. Speaker, using it is another.



Let me just say, Mr. Speaker, as I have stated before, that all the deductions that I have will be shown
tomorrow, but I do not intend to prejudice any case I have by remarks today. I have said that once, twice, three
times and I will stick to that today, despite the repetition of questions, which you may well ask, need to be
repeated.



MR. DONAHOE: Mr. Speaker, I ask the Premier if he will please tell me and the taxpayers of Nova
Scotia, what the difference is between the set of circumstances which enabled him to turf a member of his
caucus within hours of his arrival home from China and the circumstances which now cause him not to do
what he ought to do, fire the Minister of Municipal Affairs. Could he please explain the difference that has
caused him to take a different course of action?



THE PREMIER: Mr. Speaker, the differences are quite striking. In one case the issue was settled in
advance of my departure for China, with a discussion that I had with a member. This is a matter between us
Liberals and I do not intend to discuss it any further.



The other issue was that I arrived back, having been away on a very successful mission to China, as
most of you know. (Applause) As a result of that, Mr. Speaker, it was perfectly obvious that I did not have at
my disposal all the facts. I am doing that, I am not going to be forced into a position early. I am going to make
a reasonable decision and this House will be the first place that I will reveal it. That is my answer.



MR. DONAHOE: Well, Mr. Speaker, I take it then that the Premier is saying to the taxpayers of Nova
Scotia and to me, that there was one element then of the management policy of his government which he
would have me and the taxpayers believe was not concluded and was not understood, before he left for China.
Namely, that the tendering policy was in place and that every minister of his government, including the
Minister of Municipal Affairs, was required to abide by it? Is he somehow trying to suggest to us that that
tendering policy was not, at the time he departed for China, the official policy of the Government of Nova
Scotia?



THE PREMIER: Mr. Speaker, I will certainly give the taxpayers of Nova Scotia, including the Leader
of the Opposition, it makes me happy to learn that he is included as a taxpayer, that I will give this
information to them tomorrow.



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



MUN. AFFS. - HFX. METRO AMALGAMATION:

 

UNTENDERED CONTRACT - RESCISSION



MR. BROOKE TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, my question is for the honourable Premier. Different Nova
Scotia newspapers have reported that the Minister of Municipal Affairs was forced to rescind the Morash
appointment last Tuesday, subsequent to a brief phone call to the Premier who was then on a trade mission
in China. We have also learned that the Cabinet’s inner Priorities and Planning Committee also vetoed that
deal last Tuesday.



My question to the Premier is simply this, and I don’t think it will prejudice his ongoing investigation,
Mr. Premier, did you ask or demand the Minister of Municipal Affairs to withdraw Mr. Morash’s
appointment, via a phone call from or to China?



[2:45 p.m.]



MR. SPEAKER: If the honourable Premier wishes to, he may respond.



THE PREMIER: I take the question seriously and I will answer it properly tomorrow when I give the
full revelation of what my conclusions will be.



MR. TAYLOR: I have some information for the Premier that he may want to include in his very
intelligent investigation. I asked the Minister of Municipal Affairs, Mr. Speaker, through you to the Premier,
back on Tuesday, November 8th, if her announcement was precipitated by a phone call from you, Mr. Premier,
while you were in China and the minister very clearly said, no. I think that is some information, Mr. Premier,
that you should have, just in case you did not have that particular information.



MR. SPEAKER: That is a representation and not a question.



The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid.



PRIOR. AND PLAN. - BERKELEY CONSULTING:

 

MIN. - CONTRACT APPROVAL



MR. JOHN HOLM: Mr. Speaker, I would like to see if I could get a little bit more direct information
from maybe the Minister of Finance in his role as minister responsible for Priorities and Planning. As the
minister will know, under the requirements for the Management Board approval of consulting contracts, it
will apply, in other words, their approval is needed for any consulting contract not to be tendered or subject
to a request for proposals. Yesterday, when I raised questions about Berkeley, the minister indicated that he
was going to be searching out and getting some information.



My question to the minister is quite simply this, did the minister responsible for Priorities and Planning
approve, as is required, the contract that was awarded to Berkeley by the Minister of Human Resources?



HON. BERNARD BOUDREAU: Mr. Speaker, I would appreciate it if the honourable member would
table the document from which he read that. It might be of some assistance to me. The answer to this question
is no.



MR. HOLM: That is, indeed, fairly direct. My second question then, to the minister, since Priorities
and Planning did not approve it and this is out of the October 25, 1991 document on the procedures to be
followed for procurements, which is supposedly still in effect, which the Premier has referred to. The most
recent document is a January 12, 1994 memorandum from the Deputy Minister, Mr. Pinard, in which he said
whenever a sole-sourcing is going to be used that there must be a one page written report filed with the
minister.



My question to the minister, since obviously the Minister of Human Resources did not follow the rules
on the tendering part and get the minister’s and Priorities and Planning’s approval, did the deputy minister
file the one page report as required and, if so, will he table it in the House?



MR. BOUDREAU: I am a little bit puzzled, as indeed I was yesterday, Mr. Speaker. I might indicate
to the honourable member, the old Management Board, of which Priorities and Planning is the successor, was
operated very much as a command and control mechanism. All contracts of whatever size were approved in
detail, repeatedly. In fact, as part of the restructuring of government, we reinstated authority to the
departments and, in fact, only required contracts over a certain amount to come to Priorities and Planning.



The problem with that is those contracts which come to Priorities and Planning and are being sole-sourced, for which we give approval or non-approval, we have no idea directly as to what the justification is
for not tendering them. So, in those contracts which are required to come to Priorities and Planning, we ask
that that letter of explanation accompany them. That is what I said the other day. This was under the limit,
so it did not come to Priorities and Planning.



MR. HOLM: Mr. Speaker, I take a look at the statement and, quite clearly, the amount of this contract
should be coming within the guidelines as to those which are supposed to go to tender. It is certainly well
above the $5,000 figure and the rules, unless they have been changed and nobody else has been told about
them, this is sole-sourcing and it would require, as according to the rules that I read earlier, that that receive
the approval of that committee.



My last question, then, I am going to direct directly to the Minister of Human Resources. My question
to the Minister of Human Resources, since the minister does not seem to have it, will you table on the floor
of the House, this afternoon, the reasons, as written by your deputy minister, which explain why, in that sole-sourcing situation, the tender calls were not issued? Will you table what is required?



MR. SPEAKER: All right, we have heard the question. This is a final supplementary; it is required
to be brief, with no preamble.



HON. ELEANOR NORRIE: Mr. Speaker, this question I answered several times in the last two or
three weeks. Given that the tender was below the $50,000 limit that is required for approval from Priorities
and Planning, there was no letter sent to Priorities and Planning for approval.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Guysborough-Port Hawkesbury.



MR. RAYMOND WHITE: Mr. Speaker, through you and to the members of the Legislature, I would
like to introduce an active community citizen, a former member of the Guysborough Municipal Council, Mr.
Donald Pellerin. I would ask that he stand and the House extend the usual warm welcome. (Applause)



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the Opposition.



MUN. AFFS. - MIN.: UNTENDERED CONTRACT - PREMIER DISCUSSION



MR. TERENCE DONAHOE: Mr. Speaker, my question is to the Minister of Municipal Affairs. The
Minister of Municipal Affairs yesterday said, in relation to this $225,000 untendered contract, that she did
talk with the Premier when the Premier was in China. She said that she talked about the fact that there was
some concern or some shadow that had been put on Mr. Morash and that she was concerned that it might
reflect on his, Mr. Morash’s, ability to do the job that needed to be done on municipal reform. I wonder if the
minister might tell this House just what shadow was it that she described to the Premier that she felt had been
cast over Mr. Morash’s ability to perform?



HON. SANDRA JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, as I mentioned to the House last week when I dealt with this
question at that particular point in time, I had a very brief conversation with the Premier. The one discussion
was that we should look at an open-tendering policy, to go out for a complete call for proposals.



MR. DONAHOE: I wonder if the Minister of Municipal Affairs could explain to this House how it is
possible at all that she could have conducted herself as she did, namely, to publicly announce a contract that
would cost the taxpayers of Nova Scotia $225,000 and not feel any compunction, or compulsion at all that that
be sent out for public tender? How could she and how did she come to that conclusion?



MS. JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, I think as I have stated a number of times in the House, the job of
amalgamating the metropolitan municipalities will be a very tough job. There is a lot of work that needs to
be done in order to have that come to fruition, in order for that to move through a process that will deal with
public consultation, that will deal with staffing, that will deal with pension plans. All of those things would
have to be dealt with. We have a large number of people who have different opinions on how it should be
done, the process that should be followed and, as I said before, I felt it was important that we have a certain
individual available to do that and that was what I was doing.



MR. DONAHOE: I wonder if the Minister of Municipal Affairs would cite for me the provision of the
tendering policy that justifies the course of conduct which she has just now described?



MS. JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, I refer back, as I have on many occasions, to the process that was set
forward when I did the Cape Breton regional municipality, that Mr. Charles Campbell was appointed as the
individual to be the coordinator there. I could go back and suggest that the honourable member was part and
parcel of appointing Mr. Campbell without a tender call as the coordinator to develop that program as well
as Mr. Hayward as the commissioner to develop the program and the policy and the reports for the City of
Halifax, City of Dartmouth, Halifax County and Bedford.



AN HON. MEMBER: It was done already.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the Opposition, a new question.



MUN. AFFS. - MIN.: UNTENDERED CONTRACT - PREMIER DISCUSSION

 

 

MR. TERENCE DONAHOE: Mr. Speaker, I wonder if the honourable Minister of Municipal Affairs
might tell us whether or not she has been engaged in discussions with the Premier as part of his investigation
of what really went on with this mess?



HON. SANDRA JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, yes.



MR. DONAHOE: I wonder if the Minister of Municipal Affairs might be able to indicate whether or
not the Minister of Human Resources, who has responsibility, and the Minister of Supply and Services, who
has responsibility, were a part of the meetings which she attended?



MS. JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, I am having enough difficulty at this point in time dealing with my own
issues. Certainly, those other individuals, I am sure, are having an opportunity, on occasion, to speak with
the Premier. I am certainly not aware of any particular meetings that have gone on.



MR. DONAHOE: I wonder if the Minister of Municipal Affairs might indicate to this House why she
does not understand, in all the circumstances with which she has been embroiled, that the right and proper
thing for her to do is tender her resignation. Why has she not done that to this point?



MS. JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, I think what I have been doing and what I have stated all along is that we
are in the process of trying to find an individual to deal with a very tough job. I followed a process that was
very limiting, initially, and have changed that process to open it up to a much wider group of individuals.
(Applause)



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Halifax Atlantic.



SUPPLY AND SERV. - LAYOFFS: AUDIT REPORT - IRREGULARITIES



MR. ROBERT CHISHOLM: I would like to direct my question to the Minister of Supply and Services.
Mr. Speaker, you may be aware that yesterday upwards of 100 or so employees of that particular department
received layoff notices. I would like to direct my question to the minister and ask him about the cost-analysis
which precipitated this particular move. On a quick observation, it appears that, in fact, in the case of cleaning
and janitorial, the salary and benefits that were attributed to staff in the Johnson Building, in fact covered staff
out of three buildings and the square footage that was attributed to the Johnson Building was, again, for at
least three buildings, in other words it was triple the square footage for the Johnson Building, throwing the
per square foot rate way out of whack.



My question for the minister is this, if in fact there are more arithmetic irregularities in this report, as
has already been cited, will the minister agree immediately to suspend the precipitous action that he began
yesterday?



HON. WAYNE ADAMS: Mr. Speaker, let me start by saying that the figure put forward by the
member for Halifax Atlantic of 100 or so, is 98 - 46 and 52 makes 98. He is referring to some of the
mathematics in the independent audit that we had done, I am sure that is what he is referring to. I can get his
answer after but if he is doing that, I think the bottom line is what it is, we are accruing savings of over $0.5
million in cleaning services in the four buildings that I mentioned on that page. No matter how you factor
them out, the bottom line remains the same and I don’t think it is applicable that we should be tinkering with
an internal audit that is independent because that takes away the independence and it destroys the whole
purpose of what we are trying to do.



MR. CHISHOLM: Mr. Speaker, to the minister, I am referring to figures that that minister released
yesterday to justify the decision he made to immediately terminate those employees. I again ask that minister,
for example, there is just one that states, annual savings for the Johnson Building of $471,000 which is
absolutely bogus. My question is, don’t those 52 cleaning and janitorial staff, many of whom are women who
work three hours a day, $10 an hour and have done so for 30-odd years, don’t they deserve better from a
government that can’t even get its arithmetic straight?



[3:00 p.m.]



MR. ADAMS: I have every confidence, as does this government, in our civil servants, particularly the
Department of Finance and the Internal Audit Division, I would not refer to them as being bogus in anything
that they do. I want to make the point that what we do as a government is done for the benefit of all Nova
Scotians, not one or two or a few hundred or a few segments, it is everybody. The best interests of this
province is to reduce our debt and this is one small step but a major step in reducing that debt to Nova
Scotians. We are saving $6.9 million over the next four years in the actions that had to be done yesterday. It
was responsible, it was necessary. (Applause)



MR. CHISHOLM: Mr. Speaker, the minister explained yesterday through his statement that it was
necessary to do what he did and he justified that on the basis of information that is absolutely inaccurate and
it has been confirmed by his staff. My final supplementary to this minister is, will he agree to suspend his
decision and meet immediately with representatives of these employees in order to try to verify what the true
costs are of these decisions?



MR. ADAMS: Again, I depend on the audit that was done and the figures would be confirmed therein
and I would simply suggest that the member would table any evidence of confirmation that the figures are not
correct.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Hants West.



MUN. AFFS. - CONFLICT OF INTEREST:

 

MR. GRANT MORASH - ADVICE



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Municipal Affairs. I was
wondering if the Minister of Municipal Affairs would confirm to the House that her deputy minister, Mr.
Cramm, advised her of the potential conflict of interest before she phoned Mr. Grant Morash?



HON. SANDRA JOLLY: Yes, Mr. Speaker.



MR. RUSSELL: Would the Minister of Municipal Affairs advise the House then, in view of the
potential conflict of interest, why did she not consult with the conflict of interest commissioner to determine
whether or not this was indeed a conflict of interest?



MS. JOLLY: I think, as I have explained a number of times in the House already, the deputy’s only
involvement with the discussion with that particular individual he is referring to, was a technical briefing.



MR. RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would the Minister of Municipal Affairs agree then, in view of the fact
that the deputy minister advised her of the potential conflict, that he did indeed do the right thing?



MS. JOLLY: Yes, Mr. Speaker.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Hants West on a new question.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, in view of the fact that the minister acknowledges that the
deputy minister did the right thing, why does she not do the right thing and resign?



MR. SPEAKER: That question has already been asked and I rule it out of order.



The honourable member for Pictou West.



ERA - AMHERST: ROAD CHANGES - TOURISM EFFECTS



MR. DONALD MCINNES: Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister for the Economic Renewal
Agency. About a week ago or so I asked the honourable Minister of Transportation and then I went to the
Minister for the Economic Renewal Agency in regard to the entrance to the tourist bureau at the Amherst
border. I wanted to know as well as all the businesses along the North Shore of Route 6 wanted to know what
is being done to improve the entrance to the Tourist Bureau.



On that day, if I can quote from Hansard the minister said, “From a tourism approach, we have been
having steady discussions from the minister on down in New Brunswick to talk about some kind of a
cooperative approach. We have not been able to come to a successful conclusion at this time.”. I wonder if the
minister could tell the members of the House and those people that are interested, if any further discussions
have taken place in regard to improving that entrance to the Tourist Bureau where over, almost 500,000 cars
come through?



HON. ROSS BRAGG: Mr. Speaker, I am disappointed to tell the members of the House and the
member opposite that unfortunately we have not been able to strike an agreement of mutual cooperation with
the Province of New Brunswick on the issue of access to the tourist bureau. We had hoped to either do a joint
venture at the site of our tourist bureau with the New Brunswick Government and use the old bridge as access.
As you all know, when the highway was built, the new bridge made access to the tourist bureau more difficult.
We were hoping to work out a deal with the New Brunswick Government. Unfortunately, they have refused
to cooperate on this and so we are going to have to go to a fall-back position of making the best we can of the
existing entrance and off-ramp. We will certainly do everything we can to make this tourist bureau as
attractive as it was in the past.



MR. MCINNES: Well, Mr. Speaker, I am disappointed in the minister’s answer that the Province of
New Brunswick would not cooperate, the same Liberal Governments in both provinces, to let you use that
bridge. Anybody who has seen where it is has seen it would be very easy to come off that highway, up that
bridge, right into the bureau. It would be an excellent entrance to Nova Scotia. We were all very proud of that
entrance over the years.



My question is, is the minister going to go back to New Brunswick and see what else he can do?



MR. BRAGG: Well, Mr. Speaker, I have been talking as late as this morning with the Minister of
Economic Development and Tourism in New Brunswick and the New Brunswick Government has taken the
position that they do not want to allow us to have access to the bridge. As the approach would be on their
property, they have the final decision.



I would encourage the honourable member, if he thinks he can make headway to do so, but there is not
much we can do about it at this point. We are disappointed but we will make sure that we do whatever we can
to enhance the current exit and the site, so we can attract tourists to our tourist bureau at the border.



MR. MCINNES: Well, Mr. Speaker, I certainly would be very happy to write to the honourable
minister in New Brunswick about that approach. I am very serious about this matter. I think Nova Scotia is
a beautiful, picturesque province. It used to be a tremendous entrance. I know that we helped change the roads
but I still say that I don’t understand why New Brunswick would not allow us to go off that highway, up that
ramp and right to the tourist bureau. (Interruption) Maybe the Premier should ask the honourable Premier of
New Brunswick if he would look into the matter. I ask the Premier if he would ask Premier McKenna of New
Brunswick about letting the Province of Nova Scotia use that bridge as an entrance to the tourist bureau in
Nova Scotia.



THE PREMIER: Mr. Speaker, I share my colleague’s sense of disappointment over this. Sometime in
September I went through that. I understand the position and we had hopes that we would. I am quite
prepared to join with my colleague in trying to do anything we can to create the kind of entrance we need.



I certainly will be happy to respond to the member’s request. I will join my colleague, the honourable
Minister for Economic Renewal, in attempting to change the mind of New Brunswick. I am quite prepared
to do that, Mr. Speaker.



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



MUN. AFFS.: UNTENDERED CONTRACT (C.B. CO.) - AUTHORITY



MR. JOHN HOLM: Mr. Speaker, I would like to direct my question through you, sir, to the Minister
of Municipal Affairs. The minister, in explaining why she thought she had the authority to award or announce
that she was going to be awarding the contract without going to open tender, refers on a number of occasions
to the fact that the contract to Mr. Charlie Campbell, who is a coordinator in Cape Breton, was awarded
without going to tender.



My question to the minister is quite simply, who gave the minister the authority to hire Mr. Campbell,
without having gone through the tendering process of the province?



HON. SANDRA JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, that was done through an Order in Council.



MR. HOLM: Well then we have seen that certainly all Cabinet was involved in that decision. My
question to the Minister of Municipal Affairs is if that was the case or the situation that she was using to
justify the hiring of Mr. Campbell that required an Order in Council, why didn’t the minister automatically
assume that at least, at a minimum, an Order in Council would have been required to again ignore the
tendering policy of the Province of Nova Scotia?



MS. JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, that is exactly the process that would have been followed if we actually had
a contract. (Interruptions)



MR. HOLM: I am wondering where the permission came from. In the situation where Mr. Campbell
was hired, did you have a conversation with the Premier and the Premier assured you that an Order in Council
will be passed? I did not know that the Premier was the entire Cabinet.



I want to ask the minister where she felt she had the authority to announce that she was going to enter
into this contract since no formal authority had been given and since the process that had been followed before
had not been followed?



MS. JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, I have stated last week that I had made a mistake in making the
announcement before the contract had been signed.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Queens.



MUN. AFFS. - TENDERING: MIN./PREMIER - OPINIONS DIFFERENCE



MR. JOHN LEEFE: My question is for the Premier. Mr. Speaker, with respect to the difference of
opinion between the Premier and his Minister of Municipal Affairs, the Premier is quoted as saying, “. . . it
was my understanding, following discussion, that there would be a call for proposals.”. I wonder if the Premier
would advise the House if this is still his view?



THE PREMIER: Yes, Mr. Speaker.



MR. LEEFE: Then that being the case, may I also take it from the Premier that he stands by another
statement that he made when he said, “I was not aware of the decision to go ahead with sole-sourcing, neither
was I aware of the announcement that was going to be made on Friday . . . I have to say the truth.”.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member appears to be reading from a document. Could we table that,
please.



MR. LEEFE: I am quite familiar with the rules, Mr. Speaker.



THE PREMIER: Sorry, I did not get the question. I lost it in the . . .



AN HON. MEMBER: Did you get that from your furniture salesman, Dan Boyd?



MR. LEEFE: I see lots of you get the information over there from a used car salesman, what’s wrong
with getting information from a furniture salesman.



Mr. Speaker, again, my question to the Premier is, by virtue of his answering the affirmative to the first
question, may I then take it that he stands by another statement which is attributed to him. “I was not aware
of the decision to go ahead with sole-sourcing, neither was I aware of the announcement that was going to
be made on Friday . . . I have to say the truth.”?



THE PREMIER: Mr. Speaker, this is another question that is a re-question. I answered it yesterday.
The answer is the same.



MR. LEEFE: The answer then, I take it to be yes. My final question to the Premier is this, does the
Premier expect, and indeed require, all ministers, without exception, to abide by his government’s tendering
policy?



THE PREMIER: With all due respect, Mr. Speaker, that question has been asked four or five times
today. It was answered yesterday and I do not believe it is a legitimate question under those circumstances.



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



NAT. RES. - ILLEGAL HUNTING



MR. BROOKE TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, my question is for the honourable Minister of Natural
Resources. All indications certainly point to an increase in illegal hunting activities this hunting season. There
are actually cases of cows and horses being shot dead. There was a story just the other day about illegal
hunting in Pictou County.



I wonder if the minister has discussed this particular issue with his officials about these disturbing
reports of illegal hunting?



HON. DONALD DOWNE: Yes.



MR. TAYLOR: The usually very loquacious minister. Mr. Speaker, my first supplementary is again
to the honourable Minister of Natural Resources. Another incident is the one in Digby County where a Natural
Resources employee is presently under investigation.



I wonder if the minister can provide Nova Scotians today with information as to whether this
gentleman has been suspended with or without pay and as to the type of investigation that is underway?



MR. DOWNE: This matter is under investigation and I am not at liberty at this point in time to
disclose any information in regards to an employee of our department and the alleged comments and actions
that was purported by the member.



MR. TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, I am not so sure that is a good answer. The minister does not appear to
be overly concerned about this very serious issue. I wonder if the minister will give an undertaking in this
House, this afternoon, to review the various incidents and provide a written analysis to members of this
Legislature within one week on what has taken place so far this hunting season in relation to charges of deer
jacking and illegal hunting?



[3:15 p.m.]



MR. DOWNE: Mr. Speaker, in all due respect, the issue of illegal hunting, shooting farm livestock,
that is an offence under the Criminal Code. In fact, we, as a Department of Natural Resources, have been
working in conjunction with the RCMP and have asked the RCMP, under their jurisdiction, because it is a
Criminal Code offence, to make sure that they do all they can. We, as a department, have been working in
conjunction with the RCMP to impose upon those individuals all the legal actions required and our help to
assist in finding these individuals who are illegally hunting.



Now we will continue to do that and our department, I believe, if you contact the RCMP, has gone on
record as having a very positive working relationship to any offence in regard to shooting of livestock or
illegal activity within the hunting aspect.



With regard to the issue of jackers and things of that nature, as my colleague knows all too well, we
have been working very hard as a department this year in trying to stop any illegal harvesting of deer or any
other wildlife in the province. For us to come back and give a written account of all the activities that are
going on, I would endeavour to go back to my department and try to inform the House at a later date of the
activities that are going on within our department but I am not going to say to the House today, guaranteeing
a week from now. I do not know all the activities that we are dealing with and it would be wrong for me to
mislead the House and say, yes, I will do it. I will do what I can at the appropriate time.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the Opposition.



MUN. AFFS. - HFX. METRO AMALGAMATION:

 

COMMISSIONER (MR. GRANT MORASH) - PRESS RELEASE



MR. TERENCE DONAHOE: Mr. Speaker, through you to the Minister of Municipal Affairs, on
November 4th of this year, the Minister of Municipal Affairs caused to be issued a press release and the
opening four lines of the press release are as follows: “Grant Morash, regional managing partner for Deloitte
& Touche, has been appointed coordinator for the amalgamation of metro area municipalities into one unit,
Municipal Affairs Minister Sandy Jolly, announced today.”.



In light of those words, my question to the Minister of Municipal Affairs is simply this, will she tell
this House whether or not she said to Mr. Grant Morash before she issued this press release, Mr. Morash, you
have the job of coordinator for the amalgamation of the metro area municipalities?



HON. SANDRA JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, I think, as I already answered in another question previous to
this one, that I had made a mistake in making that announcement at that time.



MR. DONAHOE: Well, with respect, the minister did not come within a mile of answering my
question and I am going to ask the question again.



I asked the minister, and I ask her again, prior to issuing this press release, did the Minister of
Municipal Affairs, Mr. Speaker, say to Mr. Grant Morash, Mr. Morash, you have the job and you are the
coordinator for the amalgamation of metro area municipalities, yes or no?



MR. SPEAKER: As was pointed out earlier today by me, Beauchesne, at Paragraph 409(8) states, “A
question that has previously been answered ought not to be asked again.”. Now the honourable member . . .



MR. DONAHOE: But, Mr. Speaker, the question was not answered.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member asked the question, received an answer, which he obviously
considers unsatisfactory, and I respect that, but it is the right of a minister to give such answer, as he or she
sees fit, to a question. If the minister has responded to the question, I do not believe that the question can
properly then be placed again as a supplementary question.



I would, however, be very pleased to recognize the honourable Leader on a new question, perhaps from
a different angle.



The honourable Leader of the Opposition.



MUN. AFFS. - HFX. METRO AMALGAMATION:

 

COMMISSIONER (MR. GRANT MORASH) - CONTRACT



MR. TERENCE DONAHOE: My understanding is that Mr. Morash was under the impression that
he had been retained by the Minister of Municipal Affairs and I ask the Minister of Municipal Affairs, if I
may, Mr. Speaker, if at any point prior to the issuance of the November 4, 1994 press release, the Minister
of Municipal Affairs indicated to Mr. Grant Morash that he would be paid at the rate of $1,225 a day, and a
cap of $225,000 would be placed on the contract?



MR. SPEAKER: All right, that is a different question.



HON. SANDRA JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, in my discussions with Mr. Morash, I advised him, as I said
very often in this House last week, that the job of the coordinator had an upper limit of the $225,000 and that
the daily rate was $1,225.



MR. DONAHOE: Mr. Speaker, just so I am sure. I understand that the minister said that she did say
that to Mr. Morash? In the confusion I didn’t hear.



MR. SPEAKER: Do you wish to clarify?



MS. JOLLY: Certainly, Mr. Speaker. I think, as I had stated on a number of occasions if the member
had been following, that in actual fact the contract for the coordinator was stated as $225,000 and at $1,225
a day at a seven hour day.



MR. DONAHOE: So the Minister of Municipal Affairs is now saying that she did communicate, I
presume to Mr. Morash, that the terms and conditions of the contract were at the rates which she has just now
described for the job for what she called a contract. I now ask the minister if she will tell this House, did she
have this discussion about the $1,225 a day, the seven hour days and the $225,000 cap on the contract, did
she have those discussions with Mr. Grant Morash prior to the issuance of the November 4, 1994, press
release?



MS. JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, Mr. Morash was well aware that that was what the payment for the job was.



MR. DONAHOE: So, I take it, Mr. Speaker, if I may through you to the Minister of Municipal Affairs,
Mr. Morash then was told that he had a job with the Province of Nova Scotia at a rate of $1,225 a day for a
seven hour day, with a cap of $225,000 total, and that he was the same Grant Morash who was announced
by the minister in the press release of November 4, 1994, as the person who, “. . . has been appointed
coordinator for the amalgamation of metro area municipalities . . .”. This minister committed the job to Mr.
Grant Morash at that price, at that time, prior to the issuance of the November 4, 1994, press release, is that
not right?



MS. JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, I have already stated that in the House last week. I said that it had been my
intention that Mr. Morash would be appointed for the coordinator. I was not in a position at that time to do
it other than on a verbal basis, which I said very clearly last week. A contract had not been signed by Mr.
Morash.



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



HEALTH: CHILDREN’S DENTAL PROGRAM - ELIMINATION



MS. ALEXA MCDONOUGH: Mr. Speaker, I would like to direct my question to the Minister of
Health. During the 1993 election the Minister of Health will know that the Liberals made the very specific
promise in Party platform to protect the Children’s Dental Program from further erosion. In view of that very
specific commitment, I wonder if the minister could indicate to this House why his department has now
eliminated professional cleaning and topical fluoride applications for children in elementary schools across
the province?



HON. RONALD STEWART: Mr. Speaker, we continue to be pledged to prevent the erosion of this
program. I have received, just recently, a report of a special committee set up and I am still considering that.



MS. MCDONOUGH: Mr. Speaker, I don’t know whether the minister is evading the question or
whether he doesn’t know the answer to the question. My question relates to the fact that school boards have
been advised that this very important Children’s Dental Program is in fact being eliminated. My question to
the minister is in view of the fact that preventive health programs are seen as a top priority by this minister
and, supposedly, by this government, what is the reason why the professional cleaning and topical fluoride
application children’s dental program has been eliminated?



DR. STEWART: Mr. Speaker, in this regard, I would have to see and be aware of any specific order.
No specific order was issued by my office regarding this. We are still in the process of evaluating the
direction. There may have been a specific order given by a school board or whatever but, I would in this
specific instance, in terms of topical fluoride, we had within that program some proposals and some programs
which were duplicating in nature, duplicating the application of fluoride to children whose water was already
fluoridated and so on, we had to take action in that regard; perhaps that is what the honourable member
opposite is referring to.



MS. MCDONOUGH: Mr. Speaker, a number people have been very concerned about this
announcement and, frankly, the lack of information surrounding the announcement. So my final question to
the minister is, will he agree to table here in this House, by the end of the day or tomorrow at the latest, the
departmental review of children’s dental programs that have been carried out that I understand was completed
by July but has not yet been released to the affected and concerned public?



DR. STEWART: No, I will be happy to table that when I have reviewed it and studied the ramifications
thereof, Mr. Speaker.






MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Kings West.



HEALTH: C.B. REGIONAL HOSPITAL - CANCER TREATMENT



MR. GEORGE MOODY: Mr. Speaker, my question, too, is for the Minister of Health. The Minister
of Health said back on May 24th of this year that the government has added $1 million for cancer treatment
in the province. He indicated to me at that time that we are in discussions as to how to best approach this very
serious cancer problem on Cape Breton Island.



Can the minister tell the people of Cape Breton, some six months later, what decisions, if any, have
been made regarding the cancer treatment resources that have been secured for the new Cape Breton Regional
Hospital that is to open in a month or so?



HON. RONALD STEWART: Yes, Mr. Speaker, I thank the honourable gentleman opposite for that
question, in that it gives me an opportunity to say that we are very much committed as a government, as a
ministry, to answering the problem of the high cancer rates in Cape Breton. We have just completed a joint
partnership with the federal government, with my own ministry and the Department of Community Health
and Epidemiology at Dalhousie for a cancer project which is unique in nature, that will address some of the
very serious issues surrounding the past occupational hazards connected with coke ovens issues, in terms of
smoking rates and so on.



We have, in addition, put extra money into that region, in terms of a mobile mammography unit, which
was just opened last month, a very definite step forward which we hope to duplicate around the province. In
addition to that, we have committed funding for a clinical oncologist who has come in July. He is very active
and very helpful in planning for cancer services. We have made commitments to the Cancer Research
Foundation and the new QE II hospital to add additional funding, as is, of course, in the new budget for the
treatment of cancer around this province. I am happy to report on that to the House, in answer to the
honourable gentleman’s question.



MR. MOODY: Well, I thank the Minister of Health. This is a very important issue. I was pleased to
see the cancer study go forward. It is one that I know I supported, waiting for the federal government and I
commend the government.



I would ask the minister if he could be a little more specific about the new regional hospital in Sydney,
that is to open. Will there be some resources there for treatment for people with cancer, so they will not have
to travel to Halifax? Could he explain what kind of facilities will be at the new regional hospitals for residents
of Cape Breton?



DR. STEWART: Mr. Speaker, I can tell the honourable gentleman opposite and inform the House that
a group has been established and has been meeting over the last six months to determine the programs that
will be put in place, with emphasis on the reduction in travel and travel time and so on for patients. But to
make sure that the programs that are in place answer the need, for example, it will deal with palliative care,
chemotherapy at home, various other programs. We are most eager to put into place programs that will treat
a large number of patients.



The question, of course, also has to be asked about the facilities for radiation on that site. Since that
is a significant question, that has not yet been fully decided but we certainly are continuing in that line.



MR. MOODY: I thank the minister for the seriousness of his answers. This is a very important issue
to many people in this province, especially in Cape Breton. I would ask the minister if he could indicate to
me and, through this House, to all people in Cape Breton, when that decision will be made on the radiation
treatment aspect of the new regional hospital? He indicated that the decision has not been made yet but could
he indicate when the people of Cape Breton will know that decision?



DR. STEWART: Mr. Speaker, I can’t give the honourable gentleman opposite the date of the next
meeting, but I believe there are two more meetings to determine exactly the costs involved and, also, the
benefit.



[3:30 p.m.]



For example, the cost of a linear accelerator and the convenience that that would, of course, accrue to
the Cape Breton area must be weighed in light of the fact that we could also have a significantly expanded
program of home chemotherapy and treatment of people who, therefore, would not have to travel. So we need
to balance that as best we can.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Kings North.



EDUC. - APSEA: AMHERST RESIDENTIAL CENTRE - CLOSURE



MR. GEORGE ARCHIBALD: Mr. Speaker, through you, my question is for the Minister of Education.
In spite of promises by the MLA from the area, the Minister of Education last week closed the Residential
Centre for the Hearing Impaired located in Amherst, despite the long battle from the parents and the people
in the immediate area of Amherst who have been lobbying and talking to the minister, the community sent
very strong arguments to the Minister of Education, the central location of the town, the long history of
helping the students that were at the school.



My question to the Minister of Education is why did you, in spite of the lobbying of the local MLA,
centralize the education service for the deaf and the blind students together in Halifax?



HON. JOHN MACEACHERN: Mr. Speaker, first of all, I would like to remind the honourable member
that, in fact, the decision is made by APSEA, which is the Atlantic Provinces Special Education Authority,
which is under the auspices of the four Ministers of Education in the Atlantic Provinces.



I would also like to inform the honourable member, and I will provide him with a chronology if he
would like, that the recommendation from APSEA came last June to centralize in Halifax. I requested of the
other three ministers that we be given time to explore alternatives so that we could protect the services in
Amherst. But in fact, Mr. Speaker, after a long analysis and many discussions with the people in Amherst,
where they raised questions and we sat down with independent people to get answers for them, we provided
those answers to the people from Amherst, but there was no alternative we could present that could convince
the other three ministers that, in fact, there was an alternative because of the cost factor.



Mr. Speaker, I will inform the honourable member and all members of the House, that the facility in
Amherst is equipped for 350 residential students. Presently, there are 55 residential students and 20 vocational
students in that facility, with approximately 130 employees. Likewise, the facility in Halifax, a residential
facility for 100 students has about 30, 11 full time and 19 part time, at any time that you look at the facility.
So as a result, APSEA was about ready to collapse and the four governments had to do something to protect
the services for these students in great need. That is why the four ministers acted in that direction and made
that decision.



MR. ARCHIBALD: Mr. Speaker, it is convenient to have APSEA to hide behind. Your local MLA
did not hide behind APSEA. What of the social and the personal sacrifices of the parents and the teachers?
What plans do you have in place to assist those who are going to be uprooted?



MR. MACEACHERN: Mr. Speaker, I can inform the honourable member and all members of the
House, that the great concern of the four governments is for those students. We have in place a plan to provide
services for each and every one of them that are consistent with the services that they are used to receiving.
I can assure the honourable member and all members of the House that the parents of those students will be
very satisfied because that is our prime concern.



If we had continued in the direction we were going, Mr. Speaker, as the honourable member seems
to be indicating, then what would happen is the costs would become so exorbitant that APSEA would fold and
those services would not be available.



Just to provide the honourable member with one number. In one year, for last year, Mr. Speaker,
without the increase of one new student to the APSEA facilities, we had to pay an additional $940,000 to
preserve those services and that would have grown and grown, not to provide services for new students, but,
in fact, just to protect buildings and that is not what this government does, although it is what his government
did for a very long time. (Applause)



MR. ARCHIBALD: Mr. Speaker, it certainly had the support of the local member. In fact, he said, as
long as I am a member, the school will maintain its location in Amherst. As long as I am a member.



SOME HON. MEMBERS: Table them.



MR. ARCHIBALD: I tabled them last week for you. Will you be consulting and involving the local
parents in these moves?



MR. MACEACHERN: Mr. Speaker, let me tell this honourable member and all members of the House
about the difficulties in making a decision that was involved here by the four governments because it does
change the lives of people who are in a very delicate situation. It is required, now, that we show some courage
to protect those services. The honourable member is suggesting that we take the easy way out as he did and
his government did in order to take what would satisfy every little whim of every phone call, Mr. Speaker.
We are there to protect the services and we will make the tough decisions and we will include the parents so
that they will see in fact that our great concern is for those students.



The honourable member can shout all he wants, but history will report on what they did, the trouble
they caused. Mr. Speaker, history will speak that we will protect the services. The money will go to our
students and not to buildings and political halos. (Applause)






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



NAT. RES.: FORESTRY DEV. AGREEMENT - STATUS



MR. BROOKE TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, through you to the honourable Minister of Natural Resources.
The minister said in this Legislature on November 2nd, it is on Page 3839 of Hansard, that efforts aimed at
signing a new federal-provincial forestry agreement, were not stopping at his desk. In fact, members of
Cabinet got together and formed a committee that was headed to Ottawa to fight for all resource-based
initiatives that were here in Nova Scotia. My question is simply this, will the minister table a list in the
Legislature today, before the end of today’s session, of Cabinet committee members and meetings undertaken,
to date, with federal officials?



HON. DONALD DOWNE: Mr. Speaker, I think I made it very clear last week that we will entertain,
as members of Cabinet, to lobby as hard as we can for a federal agreement in forestry. In fact, on Monday
morning of this week, I was meeting with the federal minister again, talking about the importance of the
subagreement, Round 6, of the agreement and expressing to her the serious need to have Round 6 reinstated
for all of Canada.



If I understand correctly the request of the honourable member is to have every Cabinet Minister who
is dealing with (Interruption) to have all the meetings that they have had stated with the appropriate federal
ministers and asking for, they are requesting, that you want me to organize this on behalf of all the other
ministers? I am not prepared to do that. But I am prepared, Mr. Speaker, to table in the House today my
activities exclusively, not including Monday morning’s meeting with the federal minister, of my activities that
I have done in regard to trying to have Round 6 established for the province.



MR. SPEAKER: Very well, the documents are tabled.



MR. TAYLOR: I would like to thank the minister for those documents, Mr. Speaker, but I also would
hope to have a list of the Cabinet committee members who were on that committee that did go to Ottawa.
While we are on the subject of meetings, my first supplementary is to the Minister of Natural Resources,
through you of course, Mr. Speaker. I wonder if the minister can tell us when was the last time he himself sat
down and discussed a forestry agreement with the federal minister responsible for Nova Scotia, Hon. David
Dingwall? (Interruptions) It is the federal minister.



MR. SPEAKER: Was that question not asked previously?



MR. TAYLOR: No, it is a different question. (Interruptions) I am talking about the Nova Scotian
member.



MR. SPEAKER: A number of honourable members suggest that it was. It is sometimes rather difficult
for the Chair to follow closely the thrust of each question to determine if it is slightly different from the prior
one, but the honourable Minister of Natural Resources may respond if he detects any fresh thought in that new
question.



MR. DOWNE: The member actually asked the question. The federal minister responsible for the
Province of Nova Scotia, Hon. David Dingwall. In fact, I have met with Mr. Dingwall. I met him on February
9, 1994 or actually made a letter to Mr. Dingwall. The date of the meeting with Mr. Dingwall eludes me at
this point, but I met Mr. Dingwall in Halifax expressing the concern, I know that other industry people have
been meeting with Mr. Dingwall as well, as we have asked all people within the coalition to lobby the federal
minister as much as possible and I had met with him this year.



MR. TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, and just for clarification I was speaking about the federal minister
responsible for Nova Scotia not the federal forestry minister and appreciate that the Minister of Natural
Resources certainly picked that out and the Minister of ERA certainly did not.



My final supplementary, during the minister’s meeting and I believe the Minister of Natural Resources
had a meeting in June also with Mr. Dingwall and I understand that the Minister of Natural Resources told
Mr. Dingwall that he would be returning in a very short time with a provincial proposal. But yet some five
months later the federal government, I believe, is still waiting for that proposal so I have to ask the minister,
why won’t Nova Scotia at least put a proposal forth to the federal government?



MR. DOWNE: I would like to ask the member opposite to table any statement that has been - I don’t
know where he is getting his information - I would like him to table what he just finished saying that I
allegedly had said. I would ask to see what he is referring to, with regards to what I had promised, allegedly
promised the federal minister, the honourable Mr. Dingwall, at a closed meeting in June, I would like to see
that. I would like to see what he is referring to.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley on a new question.



Although, the honourable member for Halifax Atlantic is seeking the floor. I will allow one further
question without a supplementary.



NAT. RES.: FORESTRY DEV. AGREEMENT - STATUS



MR. BROOKE TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, I go to the honourable Minister of Natural Resources, and I
asked him in this House, have you presented a proposal to the federal minister of Nova Scotia regarding the
Nova Scotia-Canada Forestry Agreement, have you presented a proposal on behalf of Nova Scotia, yet to Mr.
Dingwall?



HON. DONALD DOWNE: My conversations with Mr. Dingwall, as I have indicated to this House a
number of times in the last couple of weeks, have indicated to him, I have indicated to him, through
correspondence and through personal meetings that it is extremely important for Nova Scotia to have Round
6 re-established. There has been no proposal that I have given him in regards to a proposed - I don’t know
what you mean by a proposal. Specifically, have I brought forward a blueprint of the new Round 6? Is that
what you are asking?



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Halifax Atlantic.



SUPPLY AND SERV. - JANITORIAL SERVICES: SAVINGS - VALIDITY



MR. ROBERT CHISHOLM: Mr. Speaker, I would like to direct my question to the Minister of Supply
and Services. With respect to the layoff yesterday of people in his department the minister provided us with
a report called Response to Management Audit, Nova Scotia Department of Supply and Services November
1994. Recommendation No. 32 says and I will table this as soon as I am through, that they supported the
recommendation by the internal auditor and it said, “A financial analysis indicates that continuing to perform
in-house janitorial services does not make sense. Over $500,000 a year can be saved by having private
janitorial service companies clean the Johnston Building and the Sydney Provincial Building.”.



I say that information is erroneous, that financial calculation is absolutely inaccurate. My question to
the minister is, given the fact that this information is obviously inaccurate, what explanation can he provide
to those 52 employees, the majority of whom are women, long-term, low-wage employees, dedicated to the
Department of Supply and Services? What explanation can he provide to those women to justify what he has
done?



HON. WAYNE ADAMS: Mr. Speaker, I will again repeat as I said before that there is no proof, no
justification that these figures are wrong but I would invite the member for Halifax Atlantic to table such
evidence of that information. The bottom line is the same. I think that the honourable member did call my
office this morning and got the same information. He was corrected on the figures, (Interruption) well, he still
says that the information is wrong and only he knows. His answer really, Mr. Speaker, in his question is that
he is undermining the principles of the internal, independent audit, which I personally cannot accept and I
don’t think our government can and neither can the men and women who have been displaced by this action.



MR. CHISHOLM: Mr. Speaker, I am not quite sure what this means because the minister’s own staff
confirmed with me in fact that the information that I am giving you is in fact correct and that the information
provided in these cost analyses is wrong. But, perhaps after Oral Question Period, the minister can speak to
his staff and get properly briefed.



[3:45 p.m.]



My first supplementary to the minister, is it in fact not the case that part of the problem in terms of why
we have inaccurate financial information here is that as a result of a November 8, 1994 letter from the
Department of Finance, showing the financial justification for decisions that were already made, was a last
minute decision to justify decisions that had already been made by he and his department to lay off employees
in the Department of Supply and Services? Was this in fact not a last minute attempt to justify his already-made decision?



MR. ADAMS: Mr. Speaker, the clear answer to the question is no, but it was part and parcel of a
whole plan of activities toward downsizing and making our department more efficient.



MR. CHISHOLM: Mr. Speaker, my apologies that sometimes matters that are as important as this are
not able to be put into a single phrase to meet some of the members’ convenience.



My final supplementary to the minister is, will he commit to me and to the people that have already
been laid off that if, in fact, he confirms that the information provided in his document to justify the
downsizing and layoffs in his department, especially as it relates to cleaning and janitorial services, if in fact
he confirms that what I said is true, that the information is inaccurate, that he will immediately suspend that
decision?



MR. SPEAKER: Well, I will allow the question although Beauchesne very clearly states that the
question cannot be based upon a hypothesis and I rather thought I heard a hypothesis there.



MR. ADAMS: It is rather hypothetical but, Mr. Speaker, let me again repeat that I do have every
confidence in the results of that internal fiscal audit on the effects of our changes. I stand by those until people
like the member for Halifax Atlantic can prove me otherwise.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Pictou Centre.



COMMUN. SERV. - SOC. ASSIST.: SINGLE-TIERED - COSTS



DR. JOHN HAMM: Mr. Speaker, to the Minister of Community Services. At the UNSM meeting in
Sydney, the information was given out that a province-wide, single-tiered social service program would
generate $27 million in new and unexpected costs. Could the minister confirm if substantial new costs have
been uncovered by his department in the delivery of a one-tiered social service program for the province and
what is the amount of these new costs?



HON. JAMES SMITH: Mr. Speaker, we have costed the new program that we are proposing for the
Sydney area and we have that within our budgetary measures. As far as the whole province goes, I don’t think
I can give the honourable member an exact answer at this time. I think there will be other initiatives within
the municipal and provincial service exchange that will have to be negotiated and I see it as Phase I in the
Cape Breton area.



We have a handle on that and I can make that available. Essentially, it means taking over $5 million
of the municipality’s current payments and enhancing the program, parts of the COMPASS Program that the
members would be aware of, and that would make a total of about $6.2 million for that particular initiative
that in fact will bring a one-tiered and more than a one-tiered system, an enhanced program to about 20 per
cent of those receiving assistance within the Province of Nova Scotia.



DR. HAMM: Mr. Speaker, I thank the minister for his answer but I was rather more concerned about
the costs outside of the program that is now in place in terms of the legislation. Obviously, we were talking
initially of a province-wide program which has not occurred. Now, while I can appreciate that the minister
might not have an exact figure but he must have an estimation of the cost of a province-wide, single-tiered
program being instituted by his department?



DR. SMITH: Mr. Speaker, probably the best way I could answer at this time, and realizing that it is
a simplistic answer because I think with the cooperation that we have seen in the Sydney area, the new
amalgamated area, the service delivery is probably easier than some other parts of the province.



So, as I have said, it would take approximately $6.2 million to do 18 per cent of the population. So I
think we could put in a factor of $5 million or $6 million on top of that and realizing that that is certainly a
guesstimate and we have not done a complete analysis for all the province. But, certainly, we were looking
at that initially, that the cost might even be more in the range of $50 million or $60 million at one time, to
do a complete one-tiered, enhanced program.






DR. HAMM: Mr. Speaker, I thank the minister for his answer. That is a startling revelation, I am sure,
for a lot of people. My final supplementary is, in view of the information that is available to the minister now,
in view of the fact that it is obviously going to be a question that he will be asked by many municipal officials,
when does the minister plan to make available a single-tiered system of social assistance delivery to all Nova
Scotians?



DR. SMITH: Mr. Speaker, I am looking forward to those times and we can work in other areas. I
would hope that, particularly, maybe with the support of the local member, that we could target the Pictou,
Stellarton, Westville area as an area of needing amalgamation and cooperation. I see this and the government
sees this particular initiative as the first phase of moving toward, not only a one-tiered system, I don’t want
to bore the House with repeating this, I think it is extremely important that this is far more than just taking
over social assistance and moving to a one-tiered system. So, we are having social reform as we move toward
the one-tiered.



I would hope, as we move toward amalgamation within the metro area, we know that we can work with
those groups. The social service departments within these municipal units in the Halifax-Dartmouth metro
community had already agreed to cooperate with us on that. I would look forward to that. We know some of
the timeframes in that particular initiative. I think some of the areas of the province, those two areas, Cape
Breton plus the Halifax-Dartmouth metro area, would really cover a large part of the population.



I think we can look forward, I am hopeful in the next few years, to see a single-tiered enhanced social
assistance program in this province.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Pictou Centre on a new question.



COMMUN. SERV.: WORKFARE PROG. - CONSIDERATION



DR. JOHN HAMM: Mr. Speaker, certainly I am quite sure that if the minister wished to pay the
general assistance costs in Pictou County, he would be well received if he came forward with that suggestion
at any time.



My question, through you, Mr. Speaker, I want to know, as does Maria Hagen of Lawrencetown, if the
province is considering a workfare program similar to the one being tested in New Brunswick?



HON. JAMES SMITH: Mr. Speaker, the experience, without being too critical of the Province of New
Brunswick, has not been a terribly happy one. So, I think to say that we would take the models that they have
used under New Brunswick Works and others, I think we can do better. I think you can inform your
constituent or the person asking the question, that we have plans that we move towards programs that are
preparing people through job search and job development and retraining, that we would allow them to be job-ready.



These people, from our experience and the programs that we have now, the Transition to Employment
and other programs, that we are finding that these people going through the programs that we currently have
in Nova Scotia are moving into employment, even in difficult areas of high unemployment.



I would prefer to say that I think we have developed, carefully, pilot projects, COMPASS and other
programs, Transition to Employment, that we will build and grow into an enhanced program. We will not
be copying New Brunswick where they have had, as the media have informed us and other documents have
confirmed, that New Brunswick has experienced upwards of two-thirds dropout within their programs. We
have had better luck with our WEPSAR programs. So, as far as the workfare, I think I would like to at least
have available the options of job training and job enhancements and those types of programs before we look
at any punitive measures as the word workfare does imply.



DR. HAMM: Mr. Speaker, to follow up with the minister, he suggested in his answer that in fact he
is looking at other programs to perhaps make people job-ready who are now receiving some form of assistance
from the province. When would the minister be planning to make announcements, in terms of new programs
which would have the effect of making people more job-ready, who are now receiving assistance from his
department?



DR. SMITH: Mr. Speaker, I think it was on October 15th that we announced a COMPASS Program.
We are working with the employment resource centres - I think there are 14 to 17 now throughout the
province. These resource centres, and I mentioned to some of the members today, familiarized them with their
employment resource centres in their particular geographic areas because I think that has been the secret of
some of the success we have had here in Nova Scotia. The employment resource centres have done a great
job, using their data base of people who are ready and job-ready for programs or ready for programs for job
re-entry. They have done a great job of matching up those applicants for those positions.



So, we have already announced the COMPASS, it is up and running. I think there are still some areas
to be filled. For those types of programs we are looking for other strategic initiatives with federal funding
assistance, particularly with the younger age group that are on social assistance.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the Opposition.



MUN. AFFS. - HFX. METRO AMALGAMATION:

 

COORDINATOR - LIST



MR. TERENCE DONAHOE: Mr. Speaker, my question is to the Minister of Municipal Affairs. I
wonder if the minister will advise the House whether or not she advised the Premier, prior to the Premier’s
departure for his trip to China, that she was, in fact, appointing Grant Morash to the position of commissioner
for the municipal amalgamation? Did she advise the Premier of that appointment, prior to the Premier’s
departure for China?



HON. SANDRA JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, in actual fact, I did not personally advise the Premier of the
appointment. I know there have been some statements back and forth in a number of areas in the press where
there has been a suggestion that I had. I did not personally advise the Premier that the appointment was going
forward.



I think what I have said on a number of occasions is that the Premier was aware that Mr. Morash was
one of the individuals on the list who I was seeking to have as the coordinator.



MR. DONAHOE: Well, the minister now tells us that she understands that the Premier knew about
Mr. Grant Morash because he knew that Mr. Morash was on some list. Will the minister tell this House
whether or not it was she who shared the contents of whatever list it is she is referring to, upon which Mr.
Morash’s name appeared, was it she who made the Premier aware of that list and Mr. Morash’s name being
on that list?



MS. JOLLY: No, Mr. Speaker, the question by the honourable member, I guess I want to make sure
I understand the actual question, that there was a specific list that I had shared with the Premier - is that the
question that the honourable member is asking?



MR. DONAHOE: I presume this is for clarification. Well, what I am trying to ask the minister is, on
the basis of her first answer to my main question, Mr. Speaker, she indicated that she did not personally say
to Premier Savage, I am appointing Mr. Morash. She then went on to say that she knew that the Premier knew
that Mr. Morash was on a list containing, presumably, other names along with Mr. Morash’s.



My supplementary to the minster was, can she tell this House whether she made that list known to the
Premier, which included Mr. Morash’s name as one of the candidates for the job in question? Did she give
that list to the Premier?



MS. JOLLY: Mr. Speaker, I think what I have stated on a number of occasions is that I was looking
for an individual and there were a number of individuals that, in actual fact, I was going to be talking to. As
I have clarified for the honourable member, as I tabled today, there were four individuals who we are in the
process of contacting, to see if they would be interested in the job as the coordinator.



I have tabled the list of those individuals who put forward their curricula vitae, their business addresses
and phone numbers because it had been a constant question and a confusion that had been generated over the
last week. The honourable member was asking whether there were four, three or two individuals. So, Mr.
Speaker, I wanted to make it very clear and also to put out the material and the information that in actual fact
there were four individuals who had been considered or who I had been approaching or were asking if they
would consider to be the coordinator, in fact. That is the information I tabled earlier today.



[4:00 p.m.]



MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. The time allotted for the Oral Question Period has expired. We are into
overtime.



MS. ALEXA MCDONOUGH: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order, arising out of an assertion that
you, sir, made earlier this afternoon to the House that you knew of no convention that a Legislative Speaker
does not attend caucus meetings. In any case that you had attended the Liberal caucus meeting recently for
the sole purpose of having a Christmas photo taken.



Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order to seek clarification on this matter, sir, because you are very
aware, as the undisputed expert on Beauchesne, of how important the total impartiality of the Speaker is in
regard to such matters. You would be, I am certain, very clear that Beauchesne states in order to ensure
complete impartiality the Speaker does not attend any Party caucus nor take part in any outside partisan
political activity.



The reason that I raise this concern, Mr. Speaker, and ask for your clarification is that the Government
caucus chairman has confirmed this afternoon, I believe, that you attend from time to time caucus meetings
and that you withdraw when it becomes a question of strategizing about what is going on in the House. I think
in order to ensure both the reality of impartiality and to ensure the perception of impartiality for the benefit
of all members of the House, that it is very important that you address this question. I therefore raise it with
you as a point of order.



MR. SPEAKER: Well, in very brief response, I would say the Beauchesne’s textbook is a textbook
about practice in the House of Commons of Canada. This is not the House of Commons of Canada. I am not
aware of any rule of the House on this matter. It is considered to be a convention. I am aware from my contact
with other Canadian Speakers, that practice from one province to another varies greatly. The honourable
Herman Rolfes, the Speaker of the Saskatchewan Legislature, is the Speaker that I have sought the greatest
counsel from on this point. Mr. Rolfes states to me that in his province he does exactly as I do in this province.
Therefore, I feel that I am following a good example because he has been the Speaker of the House for a very
long period of time in that province.



I feel that this is not a matter that involves the House in any way. What an honourable member does
on their own time is their own business. I am not aware of any rule or convention. I might state, finally, on
this matter that in 1974, I raised this very point of order. At the time, I was not a member of the Liberal Party,
I was a member of the New Democratic Party and I raised it to the point of order in opposition to the
Honourable Vincent J. MacLean. The honourable Peter Nicholson, Minister of Finance, made an adequate
statement on behalf of the government of the day, which is in Hansard, in I believe, the month of July, or so,
in 1974 and stands there to this day that, certainly, the conventions of Nova Scotia adhere or apply rather, I
should state, and not those of Ottawa in the matter of this type. I consider the matter, therefore, closed.



MRS. FRANCENE COSMAN: Mr. Speaker, I just wanted to raise a point of order regarding the
member for Pictou Centre. In one of his questions he was citing a letter and a question from a constituent. I
wonder if that is going to be tabled?



MR. SPEAKER: Is the letter available?



DR. JOHN HAMM: Yes . . .



MR. SPEAKER: Very well.



The honourable the Leader of the Opposition.



MR. TERENCE DONAHOE: I really rise, simply, to seek advice because I heard you just now say,
Mr. Speaker, in response to the point of order raised by the Leader of the New Democratic Party that
Beauchesne, I think I quote you correctly, purports to represent the compilation and consolidation and
description of the rules and the conventions of the House of Parliament, therefore, leaving me with the
impression that it somehow has somewhat less application here than I certainly had the impression until a
few moments ago because many times in this current session, you have quoted Beauchesne, Mr. Speaker,
particularly as it relates to the attempts of my caucus and all members to conduct themselves here in this
House.



I rise simply to ask you to assist me and my caucus - and I am sure all members - in determining just
what stock are we now then to put in Beauchesne because I take it, from what you have said, that in response
at least to the concern raised about your attendance at Liberal caucus meetings, you offered the opinion that
all of us as members should not lose sight of the fact that Beauchesne purports to represent the statement of
rules and procedures of the House of Commons. So, can you help me, Mr. Speaker?






MR. SPEAKER: I would be glad to offer this advice that Beauchesne’s textbook applies to our situation
where applicable. There are certainly many practices, conventions and procedures followed in Ottawa that
are not followed here at all. For an example, the one hour time limit on speeches is certainly not the
convention in the House of Commons. In the House of Commons there is a two hour time limit on the debate
of any motion and there are much shorter periods of time permitted for speeches than are permitted here.



There are many ways in which practice in Ottawa varies from that in the provinces. The conduct of
provincial Legislatures in Canada has never been the subject of any particular textbook, although a number
of academic studies have been made of the matter. But I feel that in approaching this position the best guide
I can seek is that of the practice in the other Canadian provinces, what is done in Saskatchewan, what is done
in B.C., what is done in the various other provinces of Canada.



Now, I do not consider this a point of order. I feel it is a matter that has been canvassed in the House
on previous occasions and I am prepared to research the matter, if necessary, to clarify and solidify my
position but I know that this matter has been raised because as I say, in a previous political life I had raised
it myself. The Speaker at that time ruled that there was no point of order and I similarly state that there is no
point of order.



MR. JOHN HOLM: Mr. Speaker, on a further point for clarification, I would request that you visit the
letter that you wrote to me on August 23, 1993, in which, on this matter, you said that, “A former Speaker
advises that the late Henry Muggah, Chief Clerk of the House, advised that it was the practice in Nova Scotia
`for some time’ for the Speaker to attend caucus except when the House was actually in session.”.



MR. SPEAKER: Well, the very fact that the honourable member cites a letter dated some time last year
is proof that this is not a new matter at all. I note that it has been discovered today because of the Christmas
portraiture, ‘tis the season to be jolly, perhaps, but this is not a new issue and I would urge honourable
members that we get on with the business. We are trespassing on the Opposition members’ time.



HON. ROSS BRAGG: Mr. Speaker, not to take the time on Opposition Day but I rise on a point of
order. During Oral Question Period the member for Kings North rose and quoted me as having said
something regarding the closure of the APSEA school. I don’t believe it is true, I don’t believe he was quoting
any statement and I asked him during the exchange to table it. He didn’t and I would ask him now to table
the reference he made to that quote. I believe that he is intentionally misleading the House and misleading
the people of Nova Scotia by making that statement and I would ask him to table that.



MR. SPEAKER: Well, I know that to state that one intentionally misleads the House is not permissible
under the rules, that I know. I am not clear as to the nature of this controversy. It is a request for tabling of
papers is it? (Interruption) What is the other side of this issue, please?



MR. GEORGE ARCHIBALD: Well, Mr. Speaker, the member on more than one occasion supported
the APSEA school in Amherst and he vigorously supported it and on more than one occasion I read in the
paper with my own two eyes, as long as I am the MLA, this school will remain in Amherst. Last week when
I said those very words, he complained that he didn’t say it so I sent him over several news clippings
indicating the same.



I don’t have any in my desk today, however, I will furnish them tomorrow and I will read them so that
all members will realize what that member said and now he wants to forget that he said it, now that the school
is moved.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister for the Economic Renewal Agency and then I wish to speak.



HON. ROSS BRAGG: Mr. Speaker, again, he has perpetuated the untruth. That was not what was said
at any time. The quote that he talks about that he sent across the floor last week did not say anything bearing
resemblance to what he is talking about today. I think it is unfair.



Mr. Speaker, the reason I take exception to this is because they will use that and peddle it as something
that was said and agreed to in this House when it was not. It is unfair to the people of Cumberland County
and it is unfair to myself as the member for Cumberland North.



MR. ARCHIBALD: What he has done is most unfair to the people of Cumberland County.



MR. SPEAKER: I cannot entertain any further discussion on this matter. This would appear to me to
be a dispute between honourable members as to facts. It reminds of a similar situation we had earlier where
a member had accused the honourable Government House Leader of stymieing the return of House Orders
which he said he had not done. There was no evidence that he had done and I accepted the honourable
member at his word because there was certainly no evidence to the contrary.



It would appear to be another similar situation; a dispute between honourable members as to facts is
not a point of order. Both honourable members have made their points.



MR. KEITH COLWELL: Mr. Speaker, I want to raise another point of order. Yesterday, on the
discussion of Bill No. 120, the honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley, in his debates, made
some references to a tourism association. I would like to review some of the discussion on that. I rose and
asked for some clarification and I will read what was asked. “There was an indication made that there was
a tourism meeting last evening and I would like the name of the tourism association again and some details
on that, please.”.



The reply was, from the honourable member, “I would be very pleased to tell the member for Eastern
Shore the name of the committee that was holding the meeting last night, the Musquodoboit Valley Tourism
Association was having their annual meeting at the Musquodoboit Valley Fire Hall in the community of
Middle Musquodoboit . . .”.



After reviewing the Hansard records, on Page 4495, the initial part of the discussion put forward by
the honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley, and I will read it word for word, “I was at a
meeting of the Tourism Association of Nova Scotia last night, the Eastern Shore-Musquodoboit Valley
Tourism Association’s annual meeting last night. The member for Eastern Shore may find this interesting,
it was held in the beautiful community of Middle Musquodoboit . . .”.






Mr. Speaker, to my knowledge, there is no such association as the Eastern Shore-Musquodoboit Valley
Tourism Association and, indeed from what I could find out, there definitely was no tourism association
meeting at that time. I assume that the honourable member did not intend to mislead the House and I would
like an explanation.



MR. SPEAKER: With deference, I have no difficulty in disposing of this point. There is no point of
order.

 

 

The honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley.



MR. BROOKE TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, I would appreciate a chance for a retort. I very clearly told
that member yesterday, I apologize, Mr. Speaker, I believe you were in the Chair, and I told him how to find
the Musquodoboit Valley Tourism Association meeting.



I tried to tell the member if he wanted to find the Middle Musquodoboit Fire Hall, to be a little more
clear, you go out into the parking lot, and if it is a cold day you can grab your overcoat, proceed along Hollis
Street, go up onto Barrington Street, proceed up to the new bridge or old bridge, which ever happens to be
your preference and get on the highway. You can go out the Highway No. 7, I am sure he is familiar with the
Highway No. 7, get on Highway No. 357 in Musquodoboit Harbour, go up through Meagher’s Grant, go up
to the Musquodoboit Valley and the Middle Musquodoboit Fire Hall is in the beautiful Musquodoboit Valley,
in the constituency of Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley, in the Province of Nova Scotia. I made that very clear
to the honourable member yesterday.



MR. SPEAKER: I recall the travel log yesterday, but I do find again that there is no point of order.



OPPOSITION MEMBERS’ BUSINESS



MOTIONS OTHER THAN GOVERNMENT MOTIONS



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Hants West.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, in view of the interventions, we may have to change the time
period and I am sure you understand that.



Mr. Speaker, would you please call Resolution No. 827.



Res. No. 827, re Mun. Affs. - Amalgamation: Legislation - Hold - notice given Oct. 27/94 - (Dr. J.
Hamm)



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Pictou Centre.



DR. JOHN HAMM: Mr. Speaker, Resolution No. 827. “Therefore be it resolved that the Minister of
Municipal Affairs not introduce further amalgamation legislation until real and meaningful dialogue occurs
in all municipal units.”.



If you will just excuse me, Mr. Speaker, we ended the points of order rather abruptly and you took me
by surprise.



MR. SPEAKER: We are now on Opposition Members’ Business.



[4:15 p.m.]



DR. HAMM: I think this is a very useful resolution and I think it would give us all time to reflect on
the very serious nature of municipal reform. It certainly has attracted a lot of attention recently, with the
introduction of the minister’s bill on service exchange. But that is only a small part of municipal reform. I
think it is very obvious because while all members of the House seem to speak in favour of reform, there is
considerable divergence of opinion as to what is the best way in which to proceed with this obviously very
controversial and difficult and complicated subject.



The historical background of all this is known to many members, I think, but it bears repeating here.
It is very unfortunate that the municipal governments that we have are not enshrined in the Act of
Confederation. When the Act of Confederation was designed and passed by the British Parliament, it made
no mention of local governments. This was unfortunate because this has led, I think, in the present day of
municipal governments existing at the whim and at the discretion and under the supervision and obvious
control of the provincial government. I think this aggravates and irritates many municipal elected officials.



It all came to pass in 1879, with the Municipal Incorporation Act, which did away with the Courts of
Session and allowed a structure to be set up that would permit local governments all over this province and,
I think, made government more of a neighbourhood kind of institution and it has a lot to be said for it.



However, in a very small province of 923,000 people, we have developed 66 municipal units: 3 cities,
39 towns, 24 rural municipalities, 26 local village commissions or communities, 600 elected officials, for just
923,000 people. Interestingly, during the past spring, the Minister of Municipal Affairs had the opportunity
to shake hands with, I am sure, almost all the 600 elected officials of this province.



The conglomeration of municipal units that exist now was completed in 1980, with the inclusion of
the new Town of Bedford into the municipal towns system of this province. This was the first new unit in this
province in decades.



This morass of local government has been studied for 50 years, and you will notice I said morass, not
Morash. The municipal change was resisted on the basis of uncertain costs, a fear of the loss of community
identity and a belief that more government was better government.



Over a quarter of a century ago, the Warden of Inverness County described the existing state of the
municipal antonomy as tons and tons of responsibility and not one ounce of authority. In 1969, the
Honourable Harvey A. Venoit, the Minister of Municipal Affairs in the G.I. Smith Government, told the
Legislature he had in mind a study to determine whether amalgamation of some of the province’s then 65
municipal units should take place on a piecemeal basis or whether amalgamation should take place right
across the province. Personally he stated that he favoured 12 to 15 units.



Municipal reform has been studied for over 40 years. In 1968, a study called The Local Government
and the Changing Economy of Industrial Cape Breton, the Finnis Report, in the 1969 report the Pictou County
municipal coordination study both reached identical conclusions, too much government. The Graham
Commission Report in 1974 recommended that Nova Scotia be divided into 11 new municipalities, each
would cover a rural and urban area. In 1989, the UNSM adopted the principle that service of general benefits,
that is people services, should be provided by the province or federal government and services of local concern
or property services should be provided by the local municipal government.



If there is a key to what is going on today I think it is the adopting and effecting the principle that we
have a total division of those services and that must be the ultimate goal of a successful municipal reform
policy. In 1992, the task force on local government stated that the structure of municipal government in Nova
Scotia has remained essentially unchanged since the establishment of rural municipalities in 1879. The same
task force listed five critical areas and a number of less critical areas which would be suitable to some form
of amalgamation.



The five areas that in the wisdom of the UNSM are considered to be truly requiring amalgamation are
Metropolitan Halifax, Cape Breton County, Pictou County, Kings County and Colchester County. The
Honourable Donald Cameron during his two years as Premier appointed two commissioners to study
municipal reform, one in Cape Breton County and the other in Halifax County. As of August 1, 1995 with
the beginning of the new Cape Breton Regional Municipality eight will become one, and 66 will become 59,
and on April 1, 1996, four will become one in the metro area and 59 will become 56. This leaves the prospect
of one-half of the population of the province under two municipal governments and the other remainder
requiring 54 governments to deliver property service. This is still a long way from what Harvey Veniot said
in 1969 or what the Graham Commission recommended in 1974.



At one time or other 10 areas of this province have been determined as being very suitable for
structural simplification. With the introduction of service exchange and with the changing of the financial
destinies of municipal units in this province it well may be that the original list of 10 will grow and in fact
there may be new areas identified that will require structure simplification. This government’s insight and
track record on reform must be scrutinized as this very necessary process unfolds. The position of the members
for Timberlea-Prospect, Sackville-Beaverbank, Cole Harbour-Eastern Passage, Preston, Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley was very clear and documented in a paper called super-city issued by Halifax County
Council in 1973 prior to the election.



These members stated that they did not request reform but they called on the Cameron Government
to consult with these words, you should be properly counselled, presented with all the relevant facts and
guaranteed that your sense of community and grass roots representation will be maintained, and this was their
message to their constituents in Halifax County. You should be properly counselled, presented with all the
relevant facts and guaranteed that your sense of community and grass roots representation will be maintained.
Having made that statement I think it would be very difficult for those members to support a heavy-handed
approach to amalgamation in Halifax County.



The Liberal municipal reform policy, part of the 1993 Liberal election platform, states categorically
that a Liberal government will not change municipal boundaries and structures before providing full
information to the public on the impact of such change. It will include the costs and benefits of available
options and will not be done before members of the public have had full opportunity for input and critique.
I have earlier tabled a copy of that position.



In view of the surprise announcement of the amalgamation of Halifax, Dartmouth, Bedford and the
County of Halifax on Thursday, October 27th, the options were certainly bypassed. The metro municipalities’
chief administrator officer committee reported on August 26th that it had been meeting for several months
and had provided six options. The government, with its announcement on Thursday, chose option five, or the
uni-city, effectively eliminating proper scrutiny and full opportunity to weigh the costs and benefits of all
available options.



Mr. Speaker, a piecemeal disjointed approach to reform will not work. This process has been very
poorly handled by this government because of the lack of meaningful consultation and debate and is
jeopardizing the entire reform process. The heavy-handed non-consultative approach being taken with the
metro amalgamation will do nothing but create casualties in what, otherwise, could be a bloodless revolution.



It behooves this government to take a step back and elicit the cooperation of all elected officials and
all concerned citizens before any more heavy-handed attempts to force its will upon unconsulted units. This
caucus is committed to reduce service costs and lower the costs of government at the provincial and local
levels. Real and meaningful dialogue must precede legislation if the best plan possible is to be realized.



Resolution No. 827 states, “be it resolved that the Minister of Municipal Affairs not introduce further
amalgamation legislation until real and meaningful dialogue occurs with all municipal units.”. The most
persuasive arguments towards this approach are given in the document, the super-city, which has been, in fact,
endorsed by many sitting members of this Legislature and by the Liberal policy manual in terms of
amalgamation itself. I have been pleased to speak on this resolution and will listen with interest to what others
have to say. Thank you.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Timberlea-Prospect.



MR. BRUCE HOLLAND: I am honoured to rise in my place today to enter this debate and I am going
to focus today on the, therefore be it resolved, clause of the resolution where it says that meaningful dialogue
must occur. The people of Nova Scotia have waited far too long for this particular municipal reform to take
place in amalgamation.



The greatest waste of the taxpayers’ dollars have come when we have delayed, talked and written
reports. This has gone on for years and years and we have talked to the public and the public has told us it
is time to stop writing reports and putting them on a shelf so that they can collect dust. There is much more
important work and important decisions that have to be made and to delay those decisions is only costing the
taxpayers of this province more and more each day.



I am certainly not against consultation and I believe that our lead-up to the election, my time that I
have spent in the Civil Service myself, talking to my colleagues, talking to the public, my time on county
council and speaking with members of the public. Then once we were elected, we even took the time to take
three months to talk to the public on our 30-60-90 day process, where we asked the public to come in and
speak to us. So, to say that there has not been meaningful consultation, I do not know how that can be said.



One of the things, this government has consulted, it has listened and it has learned. From that
consultation process we have learned that we must go on, decisions have to be made and I am proud to say
that this Cabinet and this government are making those decisions.






[4:30 p.m.]



The members of the Opposition will groan and wail and go on about no consultation. In the end, they
must live with their record. We all know what that record is, and we all know why they are sitting on the
Opposition benches, because of that record. Their record is one of inaction and of waste and of deceit. They
were a do-nothing government, they only spent money and failed to pay attention to much needed reforms.
They didn’t have the nerve, the intestinal fortitude to do what is necessary for this province to bring it back
to financial stability.



Municipal reform is not a new idea, we are not reinventing the wheel. It is something that has been
discussed, as the member has said, for 30, 40, 50 years. The Opposition sound like they have been living in
a different province than the one I have been living in for the last 30 years. The bottom line is that the time
for action is now.



Prior to 1973, we have seen three, six, eight different studies on this issue: the Rowitt Report, the
Pothier Report of 1954, two studies from the early 1960s by Touche & Ross, the Finnis Report of 1968 on
Cape Breton amalgamation, the Pictou County Municipal Coordination Study, the Provincial-Municipal Fact
Finding Committee including members of the Cabinet and the Nova Scotia Union of Municipalities. In 1974
the Graham Commission on education, public services, provincial-municipal relations. Five thick volumes
on municipal reform. What happened with them? Nothing, that is what has happened with them. This report
was based on extensive consultation with people in this province.



More recently, we see the Task Force Report on Local Government, the Report of the Inter-departmental Committee on Municipal Reform, the Campbell Report, the Hayward Report. Most recently, the
Minister of Municipal Affairs has visited every municipality in this province, has listened to them. These
people would lead you to believe that she just went there and sat there and did nothing. The consultation has
been endless.



MR. BROOKE TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, I wonder if the honourable member for Timberlea-Prospect
would entertain a question?



MR. SPEAKER: Would the honourable member entertain a question?



MR. HOLLAND: Not at this time, Mr. Speaker. Would a reasonable person conclude we need more
time? I don’t believe they would. I don’t believe that an argument to wait and waste more time is anything
more than political rhetoric. It seems clear to me that we must proceed. We have proceeded slowly for far too
long, study after study, year after year. Why would the members opposite wish to prolong the agony of Nova
Scotians? We have been studying so much that we should be starting to feel a bit like laboratory rats.



The pessimism of the Opposition and the NDP is not only depressing, but it is disgraceful. You know,
I don’t know why these people can’t be positive and add to the debate, instead of trying to break it down all
the time.



I am a reasonable person and I believe most Nova Scotians are reasonable, perhaps with the exception
of some on the Opposition benches, of course. Change can be unsettling for some. It is unsettling for me, it
is unsettling for everyone, but change is necessary. Change for the sake of change is wrong and no one would
dream of doing that. Change is because it is necessary. Change is because we cannot continue in the fashion
we have in the past. Change because Nova Scotians, the taxpayers of this province, will not stand for
inefficient government any longer.



Leadership requires that action be taken, an adequate prince will seek advice. The great prince seeks
advice and then acts decisively. There is nothing wrong with consultation and study. The world is far too
complex, Mr. Speaker, for simple action without study, but there comes a time when we must act and act we
will. That time is now, we are acting. I think the Cape Breton amalgamation is a fine example of how things
can work when communities pull together.



There is a bright new future in Cape Breton. The look of the new government was subject to
consultations amongst municipalities. Boundaries were the subject of public hearings. Service exchange is
the beginning of extensive reform throughout Nova Scotia. Full welfare reform for Cape Breton will
eventually extend to the entire Province of Nova Scotia and any reasonable person can understand the costs
associated with this process; they are tremendous, Mr. Speaker, and to simply, all of a sudden, flip those costs
and for the provincial government to accept all of those costs is impossible at this particular point in time.



The municipal leaders know that, they would love nothing more than to get rid of those costs. We
would like nothing more than to have a one-tier community service system, Mr. Speaker, and I have every
confidence that this government will achieve that goal. (Applause)



Government action is not rapid; it takes time. On this particular issue it has taken far too much time.
What may seem too short a time for the Opposition is too long a time for the people of this province. I don’t
like to be repetitive, but the time for action is now, not six months from now, not next year, but now. We had
30 years and these members, over here who groan and moan and go on, had 15 years and did absolutely
nothing. It would be an injustice to the people of this province to wait any longer.



Mr. Speaker, the advantages to the metro region in economic development will be enhanced by the
establishment of one development agency for this region. Business will not be tied down by the red tape which
we have experienced, which businesses have experienced, which the people of Nova Scotia have experienced
when they wish to locate in the metro region. Metro has been hampered by competition between
municipalities in this respect. The commercial tax dollar is wanted by those municipalities. When that tax
dollar belongs to one municipality, that competition will be gone and it will ease businesses into the economic
development in the area.



Mr. Speaker, it behooves me when the honourable member for Pictou Centre stands up and says that
there is no guide, how do we know the answers to the questions? They know the answers to the questions, they
only have to look at the amalgamation in Cape Breton, it is not that different. The answers are there. If they
want the answers, they just have to look for them.



Residential taxes should reflect the level of service provided in areas of a municipality, Mr. Speaker.
Someone living in Porter’s Lake will not have to pay the same as someone living in Halifax. Planning will
take place on a more coordinated approach. A central planning authority will take into account regional
concerns. This is a matter near and dear to my heart. In the riding I come from there has not been an overall,
comprehensive planning approach to the development of that community. This reflects in lack of essential
services, transportation and other types of services. With one, central, regional planning authority, that plan
can be mapped out for the entire area, so that we have coordinated transportation systems.



Volunteers will play a significant role in the municipality, Mr. Speaker. Volunteer fire departments
are not going anywhere. They are needed. They are the heart and soul of rural areas in this metro region. They
will be there. They are not going to stop fighting fires because the metropolitan area amalgamates and to
suggest so is just ludicrous. They provide a useful social function in those communities. That is not going to
disappear. They will continue to exist and complement the full-time urban core departments.



Mr. Speaker, my honourable colleague refers to the document that Halifax County had produced when
the former government had thrust the amalgamation upon the metro region. Well, we were concerned and
I do not deny that and none of the members, my colleagues on the government benches, will deny that. We
had concern. Those concerns are answered. Look at Cape Breton. The same questions in that document apply
to the Cape Breton amalgamation and those questions are being answered. They are answered. It is being
done. If they only wanted to look a little further than the end of their nose, they could find the answers to the
questions. (Interruption)



We must remember, Mr. Speaker, that this is a consultative process. Extensive consultations have
occurred and will continue to occur to work out the many details of this program. The wheel is not being
reinvented.



Mr. Speaker, I think I will conclude my comments there and I want to thank you for the time and will
leave the floor to another speaker. (Applause)



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



MR. JOHN HOLM: Mr. Speaker, I must admit it is going to be a little bit difficult to keep myself under
control as I respond to the poppycock that I just heard from the member for Timberlea-Prospect.



No one in this House, that I have heard of, and I am not speaking, obviously, for the Conservative
caucus, but I have not heard them saying that, in truth, in here lately, but no one with whom I have spoken
have said that they are opposed to reform. No one is opposed to reform. What people are opposed to, Mr.
Speaker, is deceit, double talk, self-serving decisions being taken by this government, which do not take into
consideration at all the concerns of the citizens who are living within the communities that they are talking
about amalgamating.



Respect, Mr. Speaker, respect. I challenge this government to be less pessimistic, to be more respectful
and optimistic that the people within the communities that they are talking about amalgamating will be able
to make the best decision and that they will, I have confidence, make the very best decision in the best interest
of their community and their province if the information is provided to them and if this government has the
intestinal fortitude to put that information on the table and to allow them to have a say through both public
meetings and through a plebiscite.



We are being told, within the metropolitan area, as are those are in Cape Breton, to have confidence
and trust in this government. Remember, this is a government that could not even handle how they were going
to make the announcement without blowing it that they were going to amalgamate the municipal units.
Remember, there was a news leak and this government was, therefore, forced to call the Premier in late at
night or one evening to tell the municipal mayors that this amalgamation was going to take place. They could
not even handle how they were going to do the announcement and they were not even respectful enough of
not only those who sought political office as municipal councillors, mayors and alderpersons, Mr. Speaker.
They also were not respectful enough of the people who live in this metropolitan area to let them in on the
secret that the elections were going to be almost meaningless. It was going to be a short-term thing because,
we, Mr. High-above, provincial-government, the ones who operate behind our red curtain, we are going to
have another plan which we are going to impose.



[4:45 p.m.]



This from the same minister and the same government that did not even know what their own
tendering policies were and how that process was to be done. But oh no, do not worry residents in Sackville,
Halifax, Cole Harbour and Dartmouth. Do not worry when we say that we have your best interests at heart
and that we have all the facts and figures. Just because we do not even know how to handle announcements,
just because we cannot even figure out what our own tendering policies are, I am sure we have got the
confidence to do this right. I am sure you have, Mr. Speaker.



People have been saying for years that they support reform. Mr. Speaker, the member for Sackville-Beaverbank will remember this very well. He was a county councillor at the time and he was supportive, I
believe I can say. If he disagrees with what I am going to say he can stand on a point of order to challenge
it. I would say that the member for Sackville-Beaverbank was supportive of the process that was followed at
the time, when Sackville was talking about incorporating and becoming its own town and city.



MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. Order.



MR. HOLM: At that time, Mr. Speaker, information was gathered, options were developed. Those
options were costed and then those figures, Mr. Speaker, the costed options were put out to public scrutiny.
Public meetings were then held where people could ask questions and challenge the figures. Mr. Speaker, then
the people voted and they voted, not only with their hearts, but they also voted with their heads on what was
best for their community and community services and they voted in a referendum.



This government does not have the courage or respect, Mr. Speaker, of the people of the metropolitan
area to provide that information. Any more than they did in Cape Breton. We heard about all this wonderful
consultation that went on in Cape Breton. I ask the Minister of Finance who is heckling something across the
floor. (Interruption)



MR. SPEAKER: Order, please.



MR. HOLM: I ask the Minister of Finance and others to read the presentation that came to the Law
Amendments Committee, for example, by one Mr. Coady, the Warden of Cape Breton County and Head of
Joint Ex. Who talked about the frustration and said how they had been frustrated. I invite the member to get
a copy of the presentation. I have a copy, in fact, on my desk, Mr. Speaker, and I am sure I can, with enough
time, go through it and pull out and read the exact quote for the member.



HON. BERNARD BOUDREAU: A question, Mr.Speaker. A very simple question. However, it may
require the honourable member and his Party to take a position in response which (Interruption) Is the
honourable member for or against the Cape Breton amalgamation? Simple. Yes, no, for or against.



MR. HOLM: I have been for and we fought long and hard in this House to involve the people within
the communities in the whole process. I can tell the member I still have not. I can tell the member, quite
honestly, Mr. Speaker, that based on the information that we have been receiving that with the Cape Breton
amalgamation they are not going to be receiving anything like the kinds of savings that they said that they
were going to receive. As this minister and this government said that they were going to hold the communities
together but the way the boundaries are being drawn up, the electoral boundaries are intended to split the
communities of interest. So what this government has done in Cape Breton, obviously no, I do not support
what this government has done and the way that it has done it.



MR. MANNING MACDONALD: Actually, would the member take another question on the same
subject?



MR. SPEAKER: So it is not a point of order, it is a request for a question. Is it a request for a question
or a point of order? Would the honourable member accept a question?



MR. HOLM: A brief one.



MR. MANNING MACDONALD: Yes, Mr. Speaker, the member keeps talking about Cape Breton all
the time and what he feels is good, which is a political wasteland for those guys down there but, nevertheless,
he keeps talking about what is good for Cape Breton. I would like to ask the member, would he not agree that
in the poll taken in industrial Cape Breton on regional government, over 70 per cent of the people said they
wanted it. To date, would he not agree that the people of Cape Breton are perfectly satisfied that they are now
going from 80 municipal politicians in that county down to 20? Would the member agree that that is a good
idea?



MR. HOLM: First of all, what the member failed to do was to thank me, first of all, for having said
something provocative that actually got him up out of his seat, rather than in the heckle mode that he is
normally in.



Mr. Speaker, I have not seen the latest polls and I would not at all be surprised that the majority of
people would be pleased to see that the number of politicians who are representing those areas is decreasing.
I also would not be surprised if a poll were conducted that they would also find that the results would at least
be as high where those people would support the removal of certain current sitting MLAs who represent that
area in the House, as well.



Now, Mr. Speaker, we heard the previous speaker going on and ranting and railing about the former
government and how they were deceitful. Well, I would tend to agree in a lot of areas. But I also want to refer
to something that the Liberal municipal reform policy said, that was that a Liberal Government: will not
change municipal boundaries and structures before providing full information to the public on the impact of
such changes, including the costs and benefits of available options, nor before members of the public have had
full opportunity for input and criticism.



Well, Mr. Speaker, I ask the question, what is that if not deceitful? Did the government of the day now
say, in the election campaign that they fought just about a year and a half ago, that their intention was to pick
up the line and to use the story of Don Cameron? Are you paying a royalty or a commission for using his line?
Are you giving him a royalty for using his plan, Mr. Speaker? I ask the government, I ask the former speaker.
Explain your change, explain why it was then you felt that true consultation and involvement was necessary?
I still think it is and so does my Party. My Party still believes that the majority of people support reform and
we are prepared to work for reform. But if reform is to be meaningful, you must involve the people. The
people have a right and so far, we are hearing they have not got it.



I think the decision was last-minute, I have even heard some questions and rumours as to why this is
all coming about, but I won’t report rumours on the floor of the House, Mr. Speaker. But certainly the people
of the areas that this government plans to amalgamate have a right to see the facts and figures that can be
verified, put on the table.



What this government is doing with the planned amalgamation, I would suggest, is exactly that which
they are doing in the service exchange, that is they are setting it up or planning to set it up in such a way that
it will benefit the provincial government economically or financially, Mr. Speaker, so they can channel as
quickly as possible any other costs, and the more costs they can, down to the property taxpayers. They will
download them as quickly as they conceivably can. That is the purpose of their service exchange which, by
the way, is again a complete betrayal of what was promised. As we heard those at the Law Amendments
Committee say, the minister, yes, visited the municipalities, all 66, to hear what we had to say, but the
minister did not hear us nor has the minister or the government got back to us with our suggestions.
(Interruption)



Well, the minister is saying, why do I think the government made the changes. I, certainly do not think
that the government made the changes based on what it was told because those who are appearing before the
Municipal Affairs Committee are extremely critical of the changes being made by this government and the
fact that there was not meaningful consultation nor that the government certainly did not listen. The
government has a lot of learning yet to do and it has to learn that consultation is two ways. You talk to people,
you listen to people, consultation does not just mean spending the taxpayers’ dollars to go out and hire high
priced consultants.



MR. SPEAKER: The time for debate of Resolution No. 827 has expired.



The honourable Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Resolution No. 944.



Res. No. 944, re Gov’t. House Leader - Gov’t. Caucus: Voting - Clarify - notice given Nov. 4/94 - (Mr.
G. Archibald)



MR. SPEAKER: There is no requirement to read the resolution.



The honourable member for Kings North.



MR. GEORGE ARCHIBALD: The operative clause, of course, in this resolution I would like to read
aloud: Therefore be it resolved that the Government House Leader clearly and concisely answer the following
question, does he or does he not support members of the government caucus voting for the best interests of
those who elected them or is it the best interests of the Liberal Party?



That is the crux of this little debate that we are going to have this afternoon and I think it is one that
you would agree is very timely. Last fall, our caucus recommended a series of changes, a series of reforms that
would make the Legislature more relevant to the issues which Nova Scotians are concerned about today. This
Legislature is celebrating its 175th year and a lot of things have changed in the last 175 years. We should
bring in reforms that would make us more modern, make us more up-to-date and make the Legislature more
of the people place that it is supposed to be.



The government Leader said there is no rule that says any member of the House of Assembly cannot
vote their conscience. Well, yesterday, the Government House Leader and our Premier made a rule. In the
news release that our Premier put out yesterday, he said the precedent for private members to vote against
government legislation is a practice not tolerated under the British parliamentary system.



I am here to tell you, the Premier is wrong. Since the mid-1970’s, backbenchers in Britain have been
leading the charge for change making independents of the MPs who are sitting on the back bench. Britain is
regarded as the bastion, certainly quoted by our Premier as parliamentary government and, indeed, the British
parliamentary system allows MLAs to vote their conscience.



Instances of backbenchers voting against their Party are more common in Britain and the Canadian
House of Commons than in most jurisdictions. This, I know, is news to the Premier, but almost anything
associated with democracy is news to the Premier. We must make our Legislatures more relevant.
Parliamentary rules and procedures should change. Ministers would write better legislation if they knew they
had to pass the scrutiny of their back bench MLAs. That was suggested by Reginald Stackhouse, a Canadian
MP. Mr. Stackhouse also says that MPs would study the legislation more carefully and critically if they knew
they had to justify their position.



I have been told that some legislation this government has tabled, hasn’t even been shown to the caucus
before it arrived in this Chamber. Some legislators, Liberal MP Donald Johnson, has been saying for years
that MPs and MLAs should have some degree of latitude of speaking and voting their conscience and the
opinion of the people who elected them. Why shouldn’t MLAs be allowed to vote their conscience on matters
such as Sunday shopping? Wouldn’t that have been interesting if last year all members of this Chamber could
have said what they really thought about Sunday shopping, said what the folks back home were telling them?
Wouldn’t it have been interesting if we could have free discussions on casino legislation, wouldn’t that be
interesting? If MLAs could speak their conscience and what the people are telling them about municipal
reform but the back bench remains silent, only called upon when it is time to vote.



[5:00 p.m.]



Many of the back bench MLAs were . . .



MR. SPEAKER: Would the honourable member accept a question from the Deputy Premier?



MR. ARCHIBALD: Oh, gracious, since it is him, yes.



HON. WILLIAM GILLIS: The question that crosses my mind because that honourable distinguished
member, my friend from the Valley, is advocating free votes, if he would tell the members of this Assembly
how many free votes that the government of which he was a part, a senior member on those Treasury benches,
how many free votes were there during his time in office?



MR. ARCHIBALD: Well, by golly, you know, I am just so pleased that he asked that question because
what it shows is that we have a Deputy Premier who is looking backwards. Let’s look forward, let’s look to
the future and improve. He is critical that we didn’t have free votes. I too am critical, I sat on the back bench
for four years from 1984 until 1988, I sat on the back bench, I know.



The Deputy Premier is the longest serving member of this House, to look at him you would never
believe that he has been here for pretty near 25 years, but he has. He is just a young looking spring chicken,
so to speak. I know that he knows, he has been on the Opposition, he has been in government, he has been
on the back bench and he knows the frustration of not being able to speak his mind when he wants to. He
knows the frustration of not being in charge.



Mr. Speaker, we allowed independence and no member better than he could remember honourable
Edward Twohig on the Public Accounts Committee, that committee that is so dear to the heart of that
member.



AN HON. MEMBER: Committee? This is the House.



MR. ARCHIBALD: That Public Accounts Committee, that honourable member was chairman and he
can tell you and all members of the House that it was one of the suggestions that that honourable member
made, that allowed an Opposition member to become chairman of that committee. He supported that then
when our former government brought that in. And do you remember when Edward Twohig, an MLA on the
Conservative side voted with the Opposition to allow that to happen? Was he expelled from the Conservative
Party? Certainly not, he was not expelled from the Party and the honourable Deputy Premier will agree.



What about the time when my colleagues, the member for Kings West and the member for Queens
voted against the government on a bill in the Legislature, in this very Chamber they voted no, when the
government was voting yes. Were they expelled from the Party?



AN HON. MEMBER: What year was that?



MR. ARCHIBALD: In 1982 they both voted against the government on it and they weren’t expelled
from the Party, they weren’t disciplined.



AN HON. MEMBER: What bill?



MR. SPEAKER: Order, please.



ANOTHER HON. MEMBER: Daylight Savings Time.



MR. ARCHIBALD: Well you see, Mr. Speaker, the very point of this debate is so logical and it is so
obvious, because the backbenchers have so much to say. They should be allowed to stand and speak their
minds because, goodness knows, they heckle so greatly during all debates. Maybe they have some good ideas
and some suggestions worthy of note. Certainly, in some of the written documentation that I have seen from
the back benches, it indicates to me that they used to know what they wanted to do.



Mr. Speaker, the Premier says he drew a line in the sand. That sounds like John Wayne. He must be
listening to the Minister of Health making movies or something because he is playing the tough guy. But, out
in the hall a few minutes ago, he realized the error of his ways and he told the media, well, pretty soon, he
said, I am going to set up that committee; we will get together; we will let him back in if he wants to come
in.



You know, Mr. Speaker, what is this Premier doing? One day it is one thing; the next day it is
something else. But the most difficult thing I have to swallow is the fact that he arrived home from his
Chinese trip, a minister let a contract for $250,000 and there is no problem. It takes him four days to decide
what to do about that but, in about 30 seconds, he can make a ruling on a colleague who stands up for the
people.



AN HON. MEMBER: He has been in the House longer than he has. He has been in the House longer
than the Premier, too.



MR. ARCHIBALD: Yes, that colleague has been in the House longer than he has. Mr. Speaker, where
is the justice in that? He should have looked back because when Vince MacLean tried to expel a member of
his caucus, that was the end of his rule. That was the end of Vince MacLean when he decided who could and
who could not sit around that table. By golly, this, I predict, will be the crack, this will be the beginning of
the end of this Premier’s rule.



Already we are seeing the difficulty that this has made for him. This, I believe, will be the end of the
beginning for our Premier, because nobody elected him to say who could or who could not sit with him. He
even knows that he has made a mistake in trying to make amends. In light of the callous way that he kicked
the member out of his caucus, he still can’t make the decision on what to do about a $250,000 contract. That
should have been the easy decision to make, Mr. Speaker, but it is a difficult one to make. Why? What is there
behind that contract that he is not telling us? What is there? There must be some reason, something that we
do not know; what could it be? I am asking what it could be. What is the Premier hiding from? What does
the Premier know? What is he hiding from? He can make a decision to throw a person out of caucus, but he
cannot discuss with a Cabinet Minister when they break the rule that he laid down.



The independence of people versus the Party is exactly what this resolution is about. People come first.
I was on the government bench. I have spoken to Liberal caucus colleagues and they want to have more say.
People want to be heard. People elected each and every MLA to come and sit in this Legislature, to carry their
voice. How can they carry their voice if the only time they speak is when it is a yea or a nay on the instruction
of the Whip? They should be able to speak their mind without fear of expulsion.



The MLAs may have ideas that are useful to all Nova Scotians. Share your good ideas, don’t hide them
under a bushel. The government backbenchers, they deserve to be heard, not just at voting time. I know that
you want to speak because of the number of times you rise on points or order and points of privilege; you are
on your feet all the time, up and down. You bring in resolutions. Don’t be bashful. Speak during debate in this
Assembly. Bring in the voices of your people. I know that you have differing views. You have views that
should be shared. Don’t be bashful. Let them speak, Mr. Speaker. That fellow in the United States who was
a Speaker said all politics is local and he was so right. Local people elected us, local people want us to carry
their views. They don’t want us just to follow like sheep and do exactly what we are told. We were elected to
be independent thinkers. Decide for yourselves.



This year I couldn’t support a government bill. The rest of my colleagues supported it, they didn’t kick
me out. You have got to be able to vote your own conscience, you have to be able to stand up for yourself. You
know there are people with different views. We started a little write-in campaign or write-in program, Mr.
Premier I Want To Know, we entitled it. We put an ad in the paper, we have received hundreds and hundreds
of questions, people want to know. They are asking us as Opposition members to ask the government,
wouldn’t it be useful if their MLA representing them could do all the asking.



Mr. Speaker, Joe Howe was an independent thinker. We are not plowing totally new ground to be
independent in this province but what is wrong? We have been at the forefront of independent thinking and
responsible government, let us continue. Thank you.



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



MR. DENNIS RICHARDS: Mr. Speaker, it gives me great pleasure to stand today and participate in
this debate. You know, I listened with great interest to the previous member and his renewed interest in
Parliamentary procedure. Fifteen years while his government sat on this side of the House, I wonder how
many times they had a situation where they allowed their members of caucus to vote any way they wanted to
and their government survived. It is interesting when you think about just what this whole issue is all about.



I want to kind of reflect for a moment on just how the system really works. They commented towards
the British parliamentary system. The British parliamentary system is based on a Party structure. That means
that when you join a Party and you go out and you campaign to the electorate to vote for you, you say I am
voting because I am a member of a certain political Party. That Party has a philosophy, has principles and has
policies. You go out and you tell the people that you are a member of that Party and that you want to be chosen
as their representative as a member of that Party. So, that really is the fundamental principle which we are
talking about here.



It is a principle that is quite entrenched in the system of which this country is so proud. It doesn’t say
that a member can’t bring the concerns of his constituents to government, it has nothing to do with that. I
know and you know that as a member I speak quite often to bring forward the concerns of my constituents
to our government whether it be in caucus, whether it be in committee, or whether I go to a colleague who
happens to be a minister, including a colleague that happens to be the Premier. I don’t necessarily have to
stand here in the House to express that. Constituents understand that very well. Let me identify then what
would happen if all of us here happen to vote any which way we wanted to on any issue. Could the Party ever
put forward a particular piece of legislation and understand that there is support for that within our own
caucus. No, it would not work, Mr. Speaker. It is not a matter of well, it is only one member. That is not the
point. Maybe any one of us, maybe it would be me today and somebody else tomorrow. Maybe it would be you,
Mr. Speaker, who would say, well I do not particularly like that so I think I will vote against it. Can you
imagine the chaos? No, it does not work. It does not work in Nova Scotia. It does not work in any other
province in Canada. It does not work in the British system that the member has referred to previously.



[5:15 p.m.]



They have a system, by the way, in Britain, as I understand. I would be the first to say that I have never
visited their Parliament, but as I understand it, if it is a major piece of government legislation you vote as a
government member. There is a consequence if you do not vote as a government member.






In this province any member can vote. I could choose not to vote for the government. I make a
conscious decision to do that and I suffer the consequence of that. I cannot say, I would like to be a member
of your Party today, but I do not want to be tomorrow. Maybe I will come back the next day and I might leave
again the following day.



Mr. Speaker, Party politics does not work that way. They know that. They did not allow it in their
system. They will not allow it if they ever do form a government again, and I hardly doubt that, but
nevertheless there are always those possibilities. I can say, with great confidence, that will not work. It has
not worked. It is not working today. It will not work in the future.



When during their term of office, Mr. Speaker, have they allowed a free vote system. Did they ever?
No, Mr. Speaker. It did not occur. I heard the honourable member for Hants West the other day say, public
consultation on all legislation is the only way to go. Well, Mr. Speaker, I heard that honourable member say,
and it is on the record in Hansard and a Community Services Committee, public consultation is a waste of
time. You will only get the single interest groups coming before you. You will not get the public. But all of
a sudden, Mr. Speaker, he seems to have this new vision. Maybe it has something to do with the benches on
that side of the House where you gain that vision. I do not know. (Interruption) I can assure you, Mr. Speaker,
that vision did not occur when they were sitting over here. Now, they believe that they have got all the
answers.



The people of Nova Scotia are not fooled by this. The people of Nova Scotia gave them a very clear
message on May 15, 1993. They said, we do not want you to be our government anymore because you cannot
govern. You can only put us in debt. That is what the public said. Now, that position has not changed, Mr.
Speaker. The people know the debt situation in this province of that government when they were on the
government benches. They understand that quite clearly, Mr. Speaker.



Now, they can stand today and be so self-righteous and they can say, well you know, times have
changed. Certainly, times have changed, Mr. Speaker, times have changed and the public has said, no to their
government, yes to this one and we will continue to govern this province in a way that will be fiscally
responsible, that will bring Nova Scotia back. One that we can all be proud of and with that, Mr. Speaker, I
am going to refer now to my honourable member for Bedford-Fall River to continue the debate. Thank you
very much.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Bedford-Fall River. (Applause)



MRS. FRANCENE COSMAN: Mr. Speaker, it is a rare time when one has a cheering section in this
House. I want to speak tonight to the resolution which reads, “Therefore be it resolved that the Government
House Leader clearly and concisely answer the following question, does he or does he not support members
of the government caucus voting for the best interests of those who elected them or is it the best interests of
the Liberal Party?”.



Well, I think, Mr. Speaker, this is a question that is not simply for the Government House Leader. It
is for each and every one of us, each of the 52 members in this House, to understand the great traditions that
this House actually has been derived from. It is a British parliamentary system and sometimes that very
discipline that that parliamentary system presents to us makes it a challenged task to sit here day by day and
to do our jobs in the way we would like to do them.



I think that one of our speakers earlier today talked about conscience. I would like to say that I think
every one of us has as much conscience as the next person. There are no rogues in here, there are no
scallywags in here, we are all here to do a job. If it is a conscience vote, which is something of the topic that
this debate came around to, one would have to ask, whose conscience is it supposed to represent? Is it 10
people who might call me on an issue? Is it 100 people who might sign some kind of a paper that they want
tabled here in the House? Is it 45 people who show up at a public meeting? What is conscience? Is conscience
only on life and death issues? Is it the sum of our collective parts when we go to church on Sundays and we
learn at our mother’s knee the value system that we try to take through life? I don’t think anyone in here
probably has a truly workable definition of conscience.



I can stand here and speak from the foundations of my faith, and there are not many times that a
politician gets that opportunity to speak on faith issues in this House. I don’t mind standing up and being
counted on matters of faith because I think for each and every one of us who has a strong grounding in our
principles, at some time comes head-up against the collision that those principles create when they are trying
to do the job that is politics.



Politics is not a dirty job and it is not a dirty word and it is not a profession and it is not a calling; it
is fundamentally a service. We come here, we try to do our best. We seek the counsel of wise people, we listen
to our constituents. Sometimes we pray about the issues and I would be the first to say that. That, in a way,
gives us a collective ability to try to deal with the issues that face us.



MR. BROOKE TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, I wonder if the honourable member would permit a question.



MRS. COSMAN: Well, you are sure stealing my steam. Are we timing his question out of my time?



MR. SPEAKER: Yes, if you accept it.



MRS. COSMAN: I will.



MR. TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, I wonder if the honourable member, if her constituents were opposed to
some government legislation that was being somewhat maliciously ramrodded through this House and shoved
down their throats, I wonder if the honourable member herself was opposed to that legislation and her
citizens, her taxpayers of Bedford-Fall River were opposed to it, if she would have any objections? The
Premier indicated he would call for a free vote. If the Premier were to indicate he would call for a free vote
on that legislation, I wonder if she would have any objections then to voting on behalf of her conscience?



MRS. COSMAN: I thank the honourable member for the question. I think it is a mischievous question
in some ways, even though I suspect he means to be well-intended by it, to be polite about this. It is very clear
that unless we can tap into the minds of each and every one of our 20,000 constituents, it is very difficult to
know what everybody is thinking and grapple with that and say that is a majority of the viewpoints in any one
constituency.



In my consultations across 22 homeowners’ associations and with my minister in my church and with
my friends and my enemies and all the other people who make up my constituency, I try to do the best I can.
(Applause) We have reached a point in our government that is the most refreshing thing I have ever seen in
the 20 years of my public life, it is that the Premier of this province has the guts and the determination to
bring issues to the caucus, to take it out of the Cabinet Room. (Applause)



One of our honourable members is very cynical over there. He is saying, oh, come on. But it is the
truth; this Premier will bring issues that are very painful and very troublesome to the whole caucus and go
through our opinions and listen and value our input. I would have to tell you that on Sunday shopping and
on video lottery terminals and on gambling casinos, we have vetted this issue thoroughly through our caucus.



I take pride in the British roots that we represent and in the British parliamentary system and I only
have to look to the south to President Clinton and the agony that man is going through over the health care
bill because he does not know where his support is coming from. President Clinton wanted to deliver, to the
American people, a good and a fair and a just health care system. Could he do that under their system? No,
he could not. He did not know where the discipline was or where the votes were coming from and that is the
crux of the very essence of the British parliamentary system.



Our system is based on being able to deliver on the things that you want to deliver as a government,
whether you are in for four years, eight years or fifteen years and, if we don’t have that kind of discipline, you
can just say we will be like the United States, which I do not think anyone wants to be. That, to me, is the
essence of what a British parliamentary system is all about.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, on a point of order. I regret that I missed the member’s initial
remarks but, as I understand what she is saying, she is saying that in the British parliamentary system, on a
non-confidence motion, that the members do not have the freedom to vote against the government and that
is just not correct.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member has brought forth a question that has been raised twice by
two members and it is a matter of clarification, but it is not a point of order.



MR. ROBERT CARRUTHERS: Mr. Speaker, I was going to address that point of order.

 

MR. SPEAKER: You do not address points of order, the Chair addresses points of order.



MR. CARRUTHERS: I was going to speak to the point of order.



MR. SPEAKER: The point of order has now been answered.



MRS. COSMAN: Mr. Speaker, I think this illustrates the point that, when a member of this House gets
up with passion and conviction, it is so threatening to people who sat here for so many years that they cannot
deal with it; they have to interrupt and interrupt and that is what we are seeing here.



The honourable member, who used to be Speaker, knows that I have not raised any question of non-confidence in this debate. But the honourable member also knows that the best interests of Nova Scotians are
to have a province that is debt-free, that is in a process of reform and, after 15 years of Tory misrule and
billions of dollars of debt, we must get on with the change. Thank you. (Applause)



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for the New Democratic Party does not seem to be present.



The honourable Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, in that case we will carry on with House Orders. I would trust
that the Deputy Government House Leader has the required information. We will start at the bottom. Would
you please call House Order No. 124.



H.O. 124, re Transport: Atlantic Canada Freight Rate Subsidy - Correspondence Gov’t. (N.S.-Can.) -
notice given Nov. 10/94 - (Mr. G. Archibald)



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Kings North.



MR. GEORGE ARCHIBALD: Mr. Speaker, I so move.



[5:30 p.m.]



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.



MR. ALLISTER SURETTE: In the absence of the Minister of Transportation and all the ministers who
are absent here today, the House Orders, where the ministers are not here will stand, other than House Order
No. 102. I would like to inform the member opposite of that. So, in the absence of the Minister of
Transportation, I ask that House Order No. 124 stand.



MR. SPEAKER: Shall House Order No. 124 stand?



House Order No. 124 stands.



The honourable Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, that severely restricts the number of House Orders we can
call. However, perhaps some more ministers will come in later. Mr. Speaker, would you please call House
Order No. 123.



H.O. No. 123, re Commun. Serv. - Child Abuse - notice given Nob.8/94 - (Dr. J. Hamm)



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Pictou Centre.



DR. JOHN HAMM: Mr. Speaker, I so move.



[The House Order was read by the Clerk.]



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Community Services.



HON. JAMES SMITH: Mr. Speaker, as I followed the House Order, certainly number one, I would
be pleased to comply with. Numbers two and three, they would be, I think, be identified through the Child
Abuse Register and that would be common knowledge. If there is other information there, I think the criteria
for admission to the Child Abuse Register is a conviction and I think that would be readily available. So, I
will provide what I can, certainly and I believe that I can comply with all of the requests.



MR. SPEAKER: 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 Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I understand from the Deputy Government House Leader that
House Order No. 102 can be called.



Would you please call House Order No. 102, Mr. Speaker.



H.O. No. 102, re Justice - K.R. Peckham Death: RCMP - Report - notice given Nov. 2/94 - (Mr. T.
Donahoe)



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: I so move on behalf of the Leader of the Opposition, Mr. Speaker.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.



MR. ALLISTER SURETTE: Yes, in the absence of the Minister of Justice, he has agreed to House
Order No. 102 provided that the report be vetted pursuant to the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act,
especially pertaining to personal information. So, he agrees to approve House Order No. 102.



MR. SPEAKER: 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 Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call House Order No. 101.



H.O. No. 101, re ERA: Korean Investors - Correspondence [27/03/94 to 01/11/94] - notice given Nov.
2/94 - (Mr. G. Archibald)



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Kings North.



MR. GEORGE ARCHIBALD: Mr. Speaker, I so move.



[The House Order was read by the Clerk.]



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



HON. ROSS BRAGG: We would be delighted to provide that information, Mr. Speaker.



MR. SPEAKER: 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 Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, since the Minister for the Economic Renewal Agency is so
obliging, would you please call House Order No. 99.



H.O. No. 99, re ERA: Staff - List - notice given Nov. 2/94 - (Mr. G. Archibald)



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Kings North.



MR. GEORGE ARCHIBALD: Mr. Speaker, I so move.



[The House Order was read by the Clerk.]



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



HON. ROSS BRAGG: No, Mr. Speaker, we will not provide that information.



MR. SPEAKER: The response is the information will not be provided. Would all those in favour of
the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.



The motion is carried.



[House Order No. 99 was defeated.]



The honourable Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call House Order No. 100.



H.O. No. 100, re Health: Staff - List - notice given Nov. 2/94 - (Mr. G. Archibald)



[The House Order was read by the Clerk.]



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Health.



HON. RONALD STEWART: I will supply that, Mr. Speaker.



MR. SPEAKER: It has been agreed to supply the requirements of House Order No. 100. Would all
those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.



The motion is carried.



The honourable Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call House Order No. 96.



H.O. No. 96, re Tourism - Bluenose II: Refit - Costs - notice given Nov. 1/94 - (Mr. D. McInnes)



[The House Order was read by the Clerk.]



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



HON. ROSS BRAGG: I believe we can provide that information.



MR. SPEAKER: It has been agreed to provide the requirements of the House Order. Would all those
in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.



The motion is carried.



The honourable Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call House Order No. 95.



H.O. No. 95, re Health: Min. - Travel (Ex-Prov.) [11/06/93-1/11/94] - notice given Nov.1/94 - (Mr.
G. Moody)



[The House Order was read by the Clerk.]



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Health.



HON. RONALD STEWART: We would be delighted to supply that very short list.



MR. SPEAKER: It has been agreed to supply the requirements of House Order No. 95. Would all those
in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.



The motion is carried.



The honourable Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call House Order No. 94.



H.O. No. 94, re ERA: Capt. Donald Barr - Agreement - notice given Oct. 28/94 - (Mr. D. McInnes)



[The House Order was read by the Clerk.]



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



HON. ROSS BRAGG: No, Mr. Speaker.



MR. SPEAKER: The requirements of House Order No. 94 have not been agreed to. Would all those
in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.



The motion is carried.



[House Order No. 94 was defeated.]



The honourable Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call House Order No. 93.



H.O. No. 93, re ERA: Ski Cape Smokey Soc. - Correspondence - notice given Oct. 28/94 - (Mr. D.
McInnes)



[The House Order was read by the Clerk.]



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



HON. ROSS BRAGG: Mr. Speaker, I would be delighted to provide that information.



MR. SPEAKER: It has been agreed to supply the information for House Order 93. 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 Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call House Order No. 92.



H.O. No. 92, re Nat. Res.: Forestry Dev. Agreement - Correspondence - notice given Oct. 28/94 - (Mr.
B. Taylor)



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: On behalf of the member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley, I so move.



MR. SPEAKER: It has been so moved. The House Order is for the Department of Natural Resources,
the minister is not here.



The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.



MR. ALLISTER SURETTE: Mr. Speaker, in the absence of the Minister of Natural Resources, I ask
that House Order No. 92 be stood.



MR. SPEAKER: Shall the House Order stand?



House Order No. 92 stands.



The honourable Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call House Order No. 91.



H.O. No. 91, re Human Res.: Contracts (1993-94) - Details - notice given Oct. 27/94 -(Mr.  G.
Archibald)



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Kings North.



MR. GEORGE ARCHIBALD: I so move, Mr. Speaker.



[The House Order was read by the Clerk.]



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Human Resources.



HON. ELEANOR NORRIE: Agreed.



MR. SPEAKER: 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 Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call House Order No. 117 and I so move.



H.O. No. 117, re ERA - Contracts (11/06/93 on) - notice given Nov. 4/94 - (Mr. R. Chisholm)



[The House Order was read by the Clerk.]



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



HON. ROSS BRAGG: Well, Mr. Speaker, it is going to take a considerable amount of time to compile
all this information. What I would like to do is propose that, in fact, we will give you the information you have
asked for but I would ask the indulgence of the Opposition to give us an adequate amount of time, without
complaint, to do this. We just don’t have the resources to put somebody on it and do it up quickly because it
is going to take a lot of time. But if they will give us their indulgence on time, we will make sure that we
comply with the House Order.



MR. SPEAKER: Is the honourable member who has moved the House Order satisfied?



MR. RUSSELL: Yes, Mr. Speaker, we will accept that.



MR. SPEAKER: It has been agreed to provide the information in a timeframe suitable to the Economic
Renewal Agency. 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.



[5:45 p.m.]



The honourable Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call House Order No. 118, and on behalf
of the member for Halifax Atlantic, I so move.



H.O. 118, re Agric. - Contracts (11/06/93 on) - notice given Nov. 4/94 - (Mr. R. Chisholm)



[The House Order was read by the Clerk.]



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



HON. WAYNE GAUDET: Mr. Speaker, we are happy to oblige. We will certainly provide the
information to the honourable member.



MR. SPEAKER: 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 Opposition House Leader.



MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, that concludes the Opposition Members’ Business for today.
Thank you.



MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.



MR. ALLISTER SURRETTE: Mr. Speaker, with the consent of the members opposite, perhaps we
could resume debate of Bill No. 120.



MR. SPEAKER: Resumed debate on Bill No. 120, do you have full consent? No there is not full
consent of the House. It requires full consent of the House, if not on the order paper.



The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.



MR. ALLISTER SURRETTE: Mr. Speaker, I would request unanimous consent for the Adjournment
debate, however, for the resolution submitted by the member for Cape Breton South:



“Therefore be it resolved that this Assembly commend our Minister of Health, the Honourable Ronald
Stewart, for providing superb direction in reforming the Nova Scotia health care system.”. (Applause)



MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. There has been no submission for a late debate and according to our
own House Rules, Page 6, it is required that one hour notice be given to the Clerk and a draw be undertaken,
unless we have unanimous consent of the House.



Do we have unanimous consent of the House?



Is it agreed?



It is agreed.



The honourable member for Cape Breton South.



MR. MANNING MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, I am sorry you didn’t give your ruling before the
honourable member for Kings North left. I am sure he wanted to stay and hear me . . .



MR. SPEAKER: Would you mind taking your seat for a moment.



The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.



MR. ALLISTER SURRETTE: Mr. Speaker, I believe that we would have to adjourn the House first.



MR. SPEAKER: Yes.



MR. SURRETTE: I would like to inform members of the House that we will sit tomorrow between the
hours of 12:00 noon and 8:00 p.m. Following the orders of the day will be Public Bills for Second Reading
and Bill No. 120.



I move that we adjourn until 12:00 noon tomorrow.



MR. SPEAKER: The motion to adjourn has been made and carried.



The topic for the adjournment debate is:



“Therefore be it resolved that this Assembly commend our Minister of Health, the Honourable Ronald
Stewart, for providing superb direction in reforming the Nova Scotia health care system.”. (Applause)



ADJOURNMENT



MOTION UNDER RULE 5(5)



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



HEALTH - REFORM: MIN. - COMMEND



MR. MANNING MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure for me to rise before the Assembly
today and respond to the resolution commending our Minister of Health, the Honourable Ronald Stewart, for
providing superb direction in reforming Nova Scotia’s health care system.



Mr. Speaker, in planning health care reform for the 21st Century, we face the same issues as in other
provinces. These include the increased costs of treatment, services and technology in an aging population.



Mr. Speaker, in the past, health care in Nova Scotia has been under-managed, proceeding on a
piecemeal basis without benefit of a long-term comprehensive plan. Recommendations of task forces,
commissions, individuals and organizations to reform health care in Nova Scotia have been ignored and Nova
Scotia’s health care system has not been monitored.



Mr. Speaker, our health care system is predominantly institutionalized and fiscally disproportionate.
Community-based has not been available to Nova Scotians. Only insignificant funding has gone to health
promotion, disease prevention and public health programs.



Mr. Speaker, traditionally, our approach to health care has been reacting to disease rather than
preventing it, to curing or controlling ill health rather than promoting good health, to alleviating symptoms
rather than eradicating causes. We have arrived at an impasse where we invest heavily in health care, 27.2
per cent of our budget, but we are no longer substantially improving the quality of people’s health.



Mr. Speaker, we need to take the next step to address the causes of disease, of disability and of
premature death. Today, Nova Scotia spends 27 cents of every dollar on our health care system. This puts us
among the highest per capita health care spenders.



Yet, despite our $1.3 billion budget, Nova Scotians remain among the least healthy of Canadians. Mr.
Speaker, Nova Scotians have a lower life expectancy and a higher death rate than people in other provinces.
We experience higher rates of heart disease, cancer, pulmonary disease and obesity. Nova Scotians have the
highest rate of disability, smoke more and have more accidents than other Canadians.



In addition, outcome measures have not been used to track health improvement. Mr. Speaker, while
health care costs have consistently increased, Nova Scotians, on average, are no healthier. Economic stresses
and societal developments do not allow us to put off reform any longer. Competent reform will ultimately
restructure and strengthen our health care system.



Mr. Speaker, and so here lies the challenge - to do even better without the need for new money. We
have to improve the way we deliver health care and we have to find ways to reduce the cost of health care. Or
to speak, directly, we need to get a better return for our investment. But dollars are not the only reason for
health care reform. We also need to change our whole understanding of health and health care.



Our Minister of Health, Dr. Stewart, has used the World Health Organization’s definition of health:
“That is the state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease
or disability.”.



Mr. Speaker, accepting this definition means we need to take a different approach; to look at the
determinants of a person’s health. The real determinants of health are both simple and complex. These
determinants are in the social, environmental and physical elements of people’s lives. They include factors
such as a high-quality physical environment. In other words, decent housing and supportive social structures,
families and communities. The real determinants of a person’s health also include education, since better-educated people and nations have fewer health problems. They include meaningful employment that provide
people with a living wage.



Mr. Speaker, this government is mindful of the factors affecting health in its broadest sense and strives
to produce a better quality of life for all Nova Scotians. We must place the health care consumer at the centre
of the system through the re-orientation and reallocation of services and resources.



Mr. Speaker, this government supports the expanded holistic definition of health that acknowledges
the importance of developing the economy, reducing poverty, preserving the environment, keeping children
and our youth healthy and improving literacy to achieving and maintaining the wellness of all Nova Scotia’s
people.



This government is committed to the decentralization of management and service delivery through the
four regional health boards. Mr. Speaker, this will allow for a more specific, region-by-region approach to
both general and unique community needs, thereby improving service effectiveness and informed consumer
participation in decision-making.






Mr. Speaker, in the past, committees and councils had been established in an advisory capacity, but
none had the authority to implement changes to our health care system. Consequently, complete control of
health care planning and delivery has been centralized and entrenched with the Minister of Health and the
Department of Health.



Mr. Speaker, with decentralization the planning and delivery of health care empowers regions and
communities to assess their unique health needs. Communities will be empowered to manage service delivery,
allocate resources and to improve health care through change. Ours is becoming a health care system which
is accessible to all and is guided by better health care status outcomes. Our health care system will become
responsive to individuals and communities, and will recognize the diversity of influences affecting the health
of Nova Scotians.



Mr. Speaker, decentralization of government functions and delegation of authority to communities and
regions are integral to the effective management and efficient delivery of health services. This is a consumer-centered and community-based approach. Local or regional decision-making will enable consumers to take
control of their own services and to best decide how resources should be allocated to effectively meet their
needs.



Because informed consumers are in a good position to assess their own health care needs, giving them
decision-making power resulting in, (1) health programs that are responsive to particular needs of
communities or regions, (2) communities that are accountable for the planning and management of their
health resources.



Administrative support and resources will be provided to each of the Regional Health Boards whose
membership has been drawn from among providers and consumers of health care at the community level.
Furthermore, the Health Minister announced that some time ago, that Mary Jane Hampton, Commissioner
for Health Care Reform, will be charged with the responsibility of community development in health care and
assisting the community in creating community health boards.



Ms. Hampton’s priorities are to assist in the establishment and education of the regional health board
members and to develop a communication strategy for communities. The Health Minister continues to impress
that extensive consultation with communities is vital and often cites the Community of Pugwash as an
example.



New community-based health services have been accepted in Pugwash as the basis for area health care
and as the foundation for a new role for the North Cumberland Memorial Hospital as a multi-service centre.
North Cumberland will offer new services in nursing outreach, health promotion clinics, new cardiac
treatments and chemotherapy drugs.



The new role of the North Cumberland has placed this facility on the forefront of health care reform
in Nova Scotia, and North Cumberland has become a model for change in the province. Another I would like
to point out, is the Sydney Project. The Sydney Project is a community-based initiative to improve the quality
of life for Cape Breton’s residents through health promotion, positive environmental change and disease
prevention.



The new $250,000 mobile mammography unit makes breast screening and the early detection of breast
cancer more available to Cape Breton women. This government, led by the Honourable Ronald Stewart, is
setting out reform for the health of the 900,000 people in Nova Scotia.



Currently under reform are various areas such as Pharmacare, ambulance, physician and health
professionals services, and home care. Pharmacare reform is well underway in order to protect the health of
beneficiaries, to provide for more appropriate prescription practices, to prevent illness in seniors from over-medication, dramatically reduce actual costs, and reduce the rate of cost escalation. Without this approach,
Pharmacare costs could well exceed $110 million annually over the next three to four years. The bottom line
is protection of the program as a whole.



Mr. Speaker, in conclusion, legislation introduced earlier this year is a critical step in initiating
significant improvements to ambulance services also in this province. (Applause)



MR. SPEAKER: The time for the honourable member has expired.



The honourable member for Kings West.



MR. GEORGE MOODY: Mr. Speaker, I do want to say from the beginning that I do favour health
reform. The previous speaker gave all the credit to health reform in this province to the present Minister of
Health which I think is stretching it by far. I have to tell you when the member talked about the
mammography unit that is in Cape Breton, that was an idea of the staff of the Department of Health. It was
already in motion before this government ever came into being.



When he says there is no health reform in this province prior to this government taking place, is a slap
in the face of all the health professionals in this province who have worked year after year to make changes
in the system of this province, to meet the needs of Nova Scotians. To stand up in this House and say that staff
and the health professionals in this province knew nothing until this Minister of Health came here and started
all these wonderful things, is totally not true.



[6:00 p.m.]



I want to say, Mr. Speaker, that in talking with some physicians, as late as this morning, and I talked
with two in Truro yesterday, a physician who said that he spends 20 minutes, on the average, with a patient.
He sees no more than 30 a day and after all his expenses, he clears $40,000 a year. He believes in health
promotion and disease prevention, he believes in spending time. He said what this government is doing under
this Minister of Health is encouraging doctors to see people for five minutes, so they can make more money.
To me that is what the dispute with the physicians is all about. It is not about what is good for this province,
it is about cutting.



I talked to the nurses and I talked to people as late as yesterday; patients who are in the VG, the nurses
don’t have time. They will tell you they don’t have time and people are not getting care. I talked to a lady the
other day in a wheelchair who can’t get through to the Minister of Health but he is so accessible, according
to the member who just spoke. He is so accessible that he has not been to a community in this province, to
meet with that community to talk about their needs. That is how accessible he is and that is how much he
cares about those communities that he refuses to meet with. He sends somebody else. And that is the man they
are claiming who has reformed health care in this province? I find it very difficult to understand.






We have to make reforms in health care, there is absolutely no question. We all know that we have not
been the healthiest in this province. What are the reasons? It is not because the health care system was so poor
because what the health care system did, Mr. Speaker, was look after you after you got ill. What has to happen
to make people healthier? They have to have proper housing, they have to have a good income. We have had
a problem in this province where we have had fishermen who have been able to get work and then, all of a
sudden, they would be out of work and had to go on unemployment insurance. We have had areas of this
province that have had highs and lows in employment. We have relied heavily on UI, not the fault of the
people and not the fault of the health care system. That is not why people maybe did not rate as high as being
healthy.



So, Mr. Speaker, it is a very broad thing to say, that this health reform, the cuts being made in the
system, is health reform. That is not health reform. Health reform has to do with programs that are
community-based, that lead to better health in people’s way of life and through education, that they will,
through their habits, live a healthier lifestyle.



You can’t legislate lifestyles, Mr. Speaker. We all know that certain things are not good for us. We all
know that smoking is not good for us. Some people in this Legislature, very intelligent, very knowledgeable,
still smoke but they know that smoking is not good for their health. We all know that certain things we eat
are not good for our health. Unfortunately, many of us eat those kinds of foods.



As I talk to administrators and health workers across this province, they are all demoralized. If you
ask them why they are demoralized, it is because they don’t know what the plan is of this minister, they don’t
know what the plan is of this government.



I talked to seniors who are in fear. Just last week the Minister of Health said that doctors are not going
to be paid next March, we will run out of money. Well, if the minister knew how the system worked, the
system can’t run out of money because as it works, the physicians have a block of money and as that money
is used up, per visit drops. So, that system can’t.



There are people calling me, saying, what if I have to go to a doctor next year, next March, who is
going to pay? Of course we are going to pay, Mr. Speaker. But those kinds of comments from a person like
that do nothing for the average person out there who doesn’t understand what is happening in health care.



You know just this morning, on AVR, Mr. Speaker, an editorial this morning, and I don’t mind tabling
the editorial and it goes like this, if there was a sleaze bucket of the year award for lousy employers it would
go to the provincial Health Department. That is what the commentator said this morning and he is talking
about the way that the workers are being treated at the Western Kings Memorial Hospital. That department
is expecting health workers to have morale?



This government cannot do anything with health reform, unless everybody is on-side. The kind of key
people that need to be on-side, the people that are in the system. They have to be on-side. If they are not on-side, this government is not going to be successful. So, when you demoralize all the workers, are you telling
me that they are going to be on-side for health reform? Yes, we have had task forces and one of the best things
this government did, no question, is hire a health reform person in the name of Mary Jane Hampton. A very
capable person.



My question is this, is the minister listening to her and is the minister allowing her to make any
decisions? If the minister is not listening to her and the minister is not allowing her to make any decisions,
then no matter how good she is, she will not be able to be effective. Mr. Speaker, for anyone to get up and talk
for 10 minutes saying how wonderful it is in health care when I cannot understand why my telephone is
ringing - I am sure other members’ telephones are ringing - from people saying these cuts are devastating.
They are hurting us, the doctors are moving out of the province. Nurses are devastated because they cannot
carry the work load. Other health professionals are saying, we do not know what direction this government
is going in because we have not been able to find out.



As I talk to many people around the province and when I look up at the VG Hospital and we just
learned about the Eating Disorder Clinic. A clinic that is very important to a small group of people. If any one
of us or a family member had that disorder, would it not be nice to know whether there was going to be a
clinic or not? Why does this government not say to those people, look, no matter what happens with the new
QE II, no matter what happens we are going to make sure a program as important as that is going to be there
for those people who need it.



What this government has not done as yet, they have not taken apart health reform from health cuts.
I will be the first to say that we have to get on with reform. We do have to do things differently than we have
done them in the past. That does not mean that we cut everything out and upset all the health professionals,
who are the important people that are going to make this reform work. If you upset them, they are not going
to be able to do the kind of things that we would all want them to do.



I was talking to an individual today, a doctor who said that the commissioner on health reform said
to him, you have to be patient. You will not see any change that is going to be effective for 5 years to 7 years.
I say 5 years to 7 years, that is the year 2000. People are expecting something to happen before the year 2000.
Now if the health commissioner is out there saying it is going to be 5 years to 7 years and this government
is saying it is going to be almost immediately, that is quite a difference. Hopefully, somebody will inform the
public and the minister, if he has a plan, will tell the public what that plan is.



MR. SPEAKER: If there are no further speakers, the time for the debate of the Adjournment motion
has expired.



The motion to adjourn the House has been made and carried.



The House will now rise to sit again tomorrow at the hour of 12:00 noon.



[The House rose at 6:10 p.m.]



NOTICES OF MOTION UNDER RULE 32(3)



HOUSE ORDER NO. 132



By: Mr. Ronald Russell (Hants 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 Department of Finance:



(1) Number of government credit cards issued to each individual government department including
the Office of the Premier;



(2) A detailed breakdown as to who have been issued cards;



(3) List of the various forms of credit cards, i.e., American Express Optima or Gold;



(4) Credit limits allocated to each individual card; and



(5) Expiry date of each individual credit card.



HOUSE ORDER NO. 133



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 Transportation and Communications:



(1) A copy of the contract or agreement signed between the Department of Transportation and
Wood Motors Ford Leasing of Halifax concerning the three year lease arrangement for 84 Ford half-ton
vehicles;



(2) Details of any additional purchases provided for in the agreement following the arrival of the
trucks at Wood Motors Ford Leasing in Halifax; and



(3) A copy of the additional financing costs projected to have actually cost the Department of
Transportation more if the trucks would have been purchased as referred to by the Minister of Transportation
and Communications in his government news release announcing the agreement on August 3rd.



HOUSE ORDER NO. 134



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 Transportation and Communications:



(1) The list of all tenders let by the Department of Transportation and Communications since June
11, 1993;



(2) The list of bidders for each tender;



(3) The list of those individual(s) or companies to whom the tenders were awarded as well as the
value of each contract; and



(4) Details of the nature of the work for which the tender was awarded.



HOUSE ORDER NO. 135



By: Mr. George Moody (Kings 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 Department of Health:



(1) The list of all tenders let by the Department of Health since June 11, 1993;



(2) The list of bidders for each tender;



(3) The list of those individual(s) or companies to whom the tenders were awarded as well as the
value of each contract; and



(4) Details of the nature of the work for which the tender was awarded.



HOUSE ORDER NO. 136



By: Mr. Terence Donahoe (Halifax Citadel)



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 Education:



(1) The list of all tenders let by the Department of Education since June 11, 1993;



(2) The list of bidders for each tender;



(3) The list of those individual(s) or companies to whom the tenders were awarded as well as the
value of each contract; and



(4) Details of the nature of the work for which the tender was awarded.



HOUSE ORDER NO. 137



By: Mr. Terence Donahoe (Halifax Citadel)



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 list of all tenders let by the Department of Justice since June 11, 1993;



(2) The list of bidders for each tender;



(3) The list of those individual(s) or companies to whom the tenders were awarded as well as the
value of each contract; and



(4) Details of the nature of the work for which the tender was awarded.