Assemblée Législative de la Nouvelle-Écosse

Les travaux de la Chambre ont repris le
21 septembre 2017

HANSARD14-15

DEBATES AND PROCEEDINGS

Speaker: Honourable Kevin Murphy

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

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



First Session

THURSDAY, MARCH 27, 2014

TABLE OF CONTENTSPAGE

PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS:
High Speed Internet - Kings Co.: Lack - Rectify,
1069
INTRODUCTION OF BILLS:
No. 32, Forestry Agreement Statutes Repeal (2014) Act,
1070
No. 33, Fair Registration Practices Act,
1070
No. 34, Notaries and Commissioners Act,
1070
NOTICES OF MOTION:
Res. 688, Argyle Minor Soccer Club: Exec. - Congrats.,
1070
Vote - Affirmative
1071
Res. 689, Health & Wellness: N.S. Nurses - Support,
1071
Vote - Affirmative
1072
Res. 690, Young, Cyril - East. Shore: Commun. Serv. - Thank,
1072
Vote - Affirmative
1073
Res. 691, Campbell, Brian: Stellarton FD - Serv. (40 Yrs.),
1073
Vote - Affirmative
1073
Res. 692, Borden, Chester: Achievement/Commun. Serv. - Congrats.,
1074
Vote - Affirmative
1074
Res. 693, Active Kids Prog.: Youth Leaders - Commend,
1074
Vote - Affirmative
1075
Res. 694, Bartlett, Dave: ECMA Nomination - Congrats.,
1075
Vote - Affirmative
1076
Res. 695, Nichols, Brody - Lwr. Sackville: Commun. Contributions
- Commend, Hon. David Wilson »
1076
Vote - Affirmative
1077
Res. 696, Guevremont, Pierre/MacKay, Lynne: Ironworks Distillery
- Achievements, Ms. S. Lohnes-Croft »
1077
Vote - Affirmative
1077
Res. 697, Liberal Gov't.: Budget - Balance,
1077
Res. 698, Hawboldt, Golda - Birthday (100th),
1078
Vote - Affirmative
1079
Res. 699, White, Dorothy: Commun. Commitment - Thank,
1079
Vote - Affirmative
1080
Res. 700, Good Neighbour Club (Centreville) - Anniv. (8th),
1080
Vote - Affirmative
1080
Res. 701, Atl. Superstore: President's Choice Children's Charity Prog
- Congrats., Ms. L. Zann »
1080
Vote - Affirmative
1081
Res. 702, Megan, Cassidy: Cdn. Red Cross Young Humanitarian Award
- Congrats., Mr. I. Rankin »
1081
Vote - Affirmative
1082
Res. 703, Demetre, Luke: Olympic Experience - Congrats.,
1082
Vote - Affirmative
1083
Res. 704, Doelle, Gilberte & Siegmar: N.S. Farm Environmental
Stewardship Award - Congrats., Mr. Gordon Wilson »
1083
Vote - Affirmative
1083
Res. 705, MacMaster, Buddy: Folk Alliance Intl
Lifetime Achievement Award - Congrats., Mr. A. MacMaster »
1083
Vote - Affirmative
1084
Res. 706, Fairview JHS: Multicultural Day - Congrats.,
1084
Vote - Affirmative
1085
Res. 707, Health & Wellness: Lbr. Dispute - Services Ensure,
1085
Res. 708, Kinsman, Nancy: Legislature - Serv. Congrats.,
1086
Vote - Affirmative
1086
Res. 709, Kaulback, Brenda/Team Curves Bootilicious Girls -
Cancer Fundraising, Mr. S. Gough »
1086
Vote - Affirmative
1087
Res. 710, Brookfield Musical Artists: Music Gift - Acknowledge,
1087
Vote - Affirmative
1088
Res. 711, Ogden, Larry - Prov. Vol. Award (2014),
1088
Vote - Affirmative
1088
Res. 712, Valley Reg. Health Fdn. - Health Care Fundraising,
1089
Vote - Affirmative
1089
Res. 713, Bridgewater Jr. High Boys Hockey Team - Regional Banner,
1089
Vote - Affirmative
1090
Res. 714, Liberal Gov't.: Economy - Changes,
1090
Vote - Affirmative
1091
Res. 715, Russell, Ben: RBC Olympian Prog. - Congrats.,
1091
Vote - Affirmative
1091
Res. 716, Tate, Bryden - Athletic Achievements,
1092
Vote - Affirmative
1092
Res. 717, Aerobics First - Commun. Dedication,
1092
Vote - Affirmative
1093
Res. 718, Luddington, Keagan: Upbeat Outlook - Recognize,
1093
Vote - Affirmative
1094
Res. 719, MacIsaac, Ryan: Hfx. Bus. Awards (2014) - Gold Medal,
1094
Vote - Affirmative
1095
Res. 720, Lavallée, Renée: The Canteen - Opening
Congrats., Mr. A. Rowe « »
1095
Vote - Affirmative
1095
ORAL QUESTIONS PUT BY MEMBERS:
No. 90, Health & Wellness - Nurses Strike: Patient - Protection,
1096
No. 91, Health & Wellness: Nurses' Position - Prem. Reassure,
1097
No. 92, Prem.: Collective Bargaining - Stance,
1099
No. 93, Prem. - Nurses: Staffing Level - Action,
1100
No. 94, McNeil Gov't. - Health Care Workers: Strike - Reasons,
1102
No. 95, Fin.: Debt - Alleviation,
1103
No. 96, LAE: Lbr. Relations - Consultant,
1105
No. 97, ERDT: Jobs Fund - Cabinet Control,
1106
No. 98, Health & Wellness: Nurses - Breaks,
1108
No. 99, Fish. & Aquaculture: Mar. Lobster Panel Rept. - Update,
1109
No. 100, Mar. Lobster Panel Rept.: Recommendations - Update,
1110
No. 101, SNSMR - Ivany Rept.: Goals - Min. Stance,
1111
No. 102, Fin.: March Madness - Position,
1113
No. 103, Environ.: Wood Ash Fertilizer - Gov't. Approval,
1114
ADJOURNMENT:
MOTION UNDER RULE 5(5):
Health & Wellness: Cap. Health/Nurses - Negotiations,
1116
1117
1119
ADJOURNMENT, House rose to meet again on Fri., Mar. 28th at 9:00 a.m
1121
NOTICES OF MOTION UNDER RULE 32(3):
Res. 721, MacKinnon, Allan - Pfizer Consumer Healthcare
Bowl of Hygeia, Hon. K. Casey »
1122
Res. 722, Nightingale, Mrs. Marie: Death of - Tribute,
1122
Res. 723, Fells, Kayla: African N.S. Affs. - Rising Star,
1123
Res. 724, Windsor-West Hants Minor Hockey Assoc.: Vol. Work Ethic
- Appreciation Extend, Mr. C. Porter « »
1123
Res. 725, Pictou Co. Female Atom AA Subway Selects
Hockey Team/Coaches - Championship, Hon. P. Dunn « »
1124
Res. 726, Keough, Alison - Athletic Achievements,
1124
Res. 727, Hanley-Campbell, James (Deceased) Fam./Friends:
Donation - Thank, Mr. A. MacLeod « »
1125
Res. 728, MacDonald, Clyde/MacKenzie, Philip: Photo Displays
- Congrats., Mr. T. Houston « »
1125
Res. 729, Scotiabank (Main St. Br.): Mental Health Fdn
- Donation, Hon. A. Younger »
1126
Res. 730, Conklin, Connor/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1126
Res. 731, Semple, Liam/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1127
Res. 732, Hartling, Max/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1127
Res. 733, Young, Liam/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1127
Res. 734, Young, Jacob/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1128
Res. 735, Gladwin, Zack/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1128
Res. 736, O'Toole, Ryan/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1129
Res. 737, Rock, Marshall/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1129
Res. 738, Lee, Austin/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1130
Res. 739, Williamson, Ryan/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1130
Res. 740, Wilson, Alex/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1130
Res. 741, MacLean, Morgan/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1131
Res. 742, Kini, Morgan/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1131
Res. 743, Lee, Carter/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1132
Res. 744, Wilkie, Noah/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1132
Res. 745, Sabean, Matt/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1133
Res. 746, O'Toole, Evan/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1133
Res. 747, Waterman, Brennan/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1133
Res. 748, Sabean, Marc/Bridgewater Jr. High Hockey Team:
Successful Season, Hon. M. Furey « »
1134

[Page 1069]

HALIFAX, THURSDAY, MARCH 27, 2014

Sixty-second General Assembly

First Session

2:00 P.M.

SPEAKER

Hon. Kevin Murphy

DEPUTY SPEAKER

Ms. Margaret Miller

MR. SPEAKER « » : Order, please. Before we start the daily routine, the subject matter for late debate has been chosen and is:

Therefore be it resolved that the Liberal Government's mishandling of the negotiations with nurses at Capital Health will cause the cancellation of important tests and procedures and is putting patient safety at risk.

That has been submitted by the honourable member for Pictou East.

We will now proceed with the daily routine.

PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS

MR. SPEAKER « » : The honourable member for Kings North.

MR. JOHN LOHR « » : Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition. The operative clause is:

"WHEREAS we the citizens of Kings County, Nova Scotia have not received high-speed internet service as has been promised to all citizens of Nova Scotia dating back to 2009, we hereby request that the Legislative Assembly of Nova Scotia rectify this situation . . . To provide the citizens of rural Kings County with the same access to high-speed internet as is available to the more urban areas of Nova Scotia, by the end of the 2014 calendar year."

[Page 1070]

Mr. Speaker, there are 24 signatures on this petition, and I have affixed my name.

MR. SPEAKER « » : The petition is tabled.

PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES

TABLING REPORTS, REGULATIONS AND OTHER PAPERS

STATEMENTS BY MINISTERS

GOVERNMENT NOTICES OF MOTION

INTRODUCTION OF BILLS

Bill No. 32 - Entitled an Act to Repeal Certain Statutes Pertaining to Forestry Agreements. (Hon. Zach Churchill)

Bill No. 33 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 38 of the Acts of 2008. The Fair Registration Practices Act. (Hon. Kelly Regan)

Bill No. 34 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 312 of the Revised Statutes of 1989. The Notaries and Commissioners Act. (Hon. Lena Diab)

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

NOTICES OF MOTION

MR. SPEAKER « » : The honourable member for Argyle-Barrington.

RESOLUTION NO. 688

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

Whereas the Argyle Minor Soccer Club had 323 youth registered to play last summer; and

Whereas the Argyle Minor Soccer Club offered a summer of fun and competition for so many youth, including the Jamboree for Soccer Skills and an end-of-season tournament; and

[Page 1071]

Whereas registration is currently underway for the 2014 soccer season, with the deadline being April 30th;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly extend our thanks to the hard-working executive of the Argyle Minor Soccer Club - President Tracey A. Surette, Vice-President Tracy J. Muise, Secretary/Treasurer Nicole J. Albright, and Directors Natalie Surette d'Entremont and Thomas Robicheau - as they prepare for the upcoming season.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

I would like to remind the members to keep the chatter down, it's hard to hear.

The honourable member for Halifax Needham.

RESOLUTION NO. 689

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

Whereas Nova Scotia nurses work hard every day to better the lives of their patients; and

Whereas nurses play a vital role in our publicly funded health system, providing passionate and professional care to their patients; and

Whereas nurses deserve to be treated fairly and equitably at every aspect of their work, including their safety and the safety of their patients;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House of Assembly support all nurses in every aspect of their workplaces and support their dedication, diligence, and professional commitment to Nova Scotians on a daily basis.

[Page 1072]

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Dartmouth South.

RESOLUTION NO. 690

MR. ALLAN ROWE « » : Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the honourable member for Eastern Shore, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas Cyril Young, born and raised in Musquodoboit Harbour is a long-time businessman and pillar of his community; and

Whereas Cyril worked in the family business, in which he travelled the coastline in a freighter selling various supplies to the residents of the Shore, Cyril has seen many changes and developments in his community over the years, including being present when electricity first made its way to the Eastern Shore; and

Whereas Cyril has continued to help his community as a chartered member of Musquodoboit Harbour & District Lions Club and embodies the Lions' motto of "We Serve";

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House of Assembly join me in thanking Cyril Young for his continued service to the people of the Eastern Shore.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

[Page 1073]

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Pictou Centre.

RESOLUTION NO. 691

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

Whereas Brian Campbell has served a remarkable 40 years with the Stellarton Fire Department; and

Whereas over his 40 years as a volunteer firefighter, Brian's record of being first at the station when his pager goes still ranks among the best with his fellow firefighters; and

Whereas Brian is a solid volunteer firefighter who also assists with community fundraising efforts like pancake breakfasts, helping with the Christmas Eve parade and instructing at the local fire school;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly commend Stellarton firefighter Brian Campbell for his legendary service with the Stellarton Fire Department and wish him many more years of success in the volunteer fire service.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Sydney-Whitney Pier.

RESOLUTION NO. 692

[Page 1074]

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

Whereas Chester Borden was the first African Nova Scotian student support worker hired by the Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board; and

Whereas Chester Borden is presently the Executive Director of the Whitney Pier Youth Club; and

Whereas on March 21, 2014, Chester Borden was presented with the Carl (Campy) Crawford Award, in recognition of his leadership and commitment to justice, fairness, volunteerism, sportsmanship and equality in his community;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate Chester Borden on his outstanding achievement and for his dedication and service to his community.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Halifax Atlantic.

RESOLUTION NO. 693

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

Whereas the Active Kids Program is in its second season and provides a free outdoor play program one day a week to elementary school students around the Halifax Atlantic loop; and

Whereas the program is run by youth leaders who are responsible for the program planning and implementation, with the help of parent volunteers to coordinate the program; and

[Page 1075]

Whereas this youth-run program provides outdoor activities and fosters team building and co-operative play;

Therefore be it resolved that members of the House of Assembly commend the youth leaders of the Active Kids Program for their dedication to making a difference in their community and helping to make physical activity a part of our children's lives in a fun and creative way.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley.

RESOLUTION NO. 694

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

Whereas David Bartlett of Hilden has been writing music since 1956; and

Whereas in 2013, Bartlett was a nominee for Music Nova Scotia's Inspirational Recording of the Year; and

Whereas Dave's song The Way We Are, written in 1987 and recorded by Ben Everson, has been nominated for Gospel Recording of the Year at the 2014 East Coast Music Awards, scheduled to be held on Prince Edward Island, April 2nd to April 6th;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly congratulate Dave Bartlett for his rich musical talents and wish him the very best at the 2014 East Coast Music Awards.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

[Page 1076]

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid.

RESOLUTION NO. 695

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

Whereas Halifax hosted the first Atlantic Canada We Day on November 27, 2013, an inspirational event promoting global citizenship for youth; and

Whereas through acts of service, Lower Sackville's Brody Nichols was one of 40 students from Sackville High School who joined more than 8,000 students who earned admission to Atlantic Canada's first We Day, held in Halifax on November 27, 2013; and

Whereas during the We Day celebrations Brody was the winner of a 10-day volunteer trip to Ecuador in July 2014, to continue his growth in contributing to a global community;

Therefore be it resolved that this House of Assembly commend Lower Sackville's Brody Nichols on his contributions to his community through We Day activities, wish him well as he travels to Ecuador in July 2014 to make a difference in our global community, and wish him future success.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

[Page 1077]

The honourable member for Lunenburg.

RESOLUTION NO. 696

MS. SUZANNE LOHNES-CROFT « » : Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas the World Rum Awards and the World Brandy Awards, part of the World Drink Awards, have been running since 2007 and attract hundreds of entrants from 24 countries from around the globe; and

Whereas Pierre Guevremont and Lynne MacKay, owners of Ironworks Distillery in Lunenburg, have thrived since opening its doors in 2010; and

Whereas the company was awarded five gold medals in competition for the world's best dark rum, world's best brandy, world's best apple brandy, world's best fruit brandy, and world's best brandy design;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Pierre and Lynne, owners of Ironworks Distillery, for their hard work and tremendous achievements at the World Brandy Awards and the World Rum Awards.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Pictou East.

RESOLUTION NO. 697

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

Whereas Nova Scotians are struggling to make ends meet, with many opting to leave Nova Scotia for job opportunities elsewhere; and

[Page 1078]

Whereas the provincial debt has ballooned to over $15 billion and debt servicing costs are currently the third most expensive line item in the budget; and

Whereas the Liberal Government has signalled that it has chosen to continue this immoral act of passing debt along to our children and our children's children;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly remind the Liberal Government that Nova Scotians expect them to act and to make difficult decisions regarding the balance of the budget, creating jobs, and getting the province's economy back on track.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear several Noes.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Chester-St. Margaret's.

RESOLUTION NO. 698

HON. DENISE PETERSON-RAFUSE « » : Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

Whereas on January 15, 2013, Golda Hawboldt celebrated her 100th birthday; and

Whereas Golda was born in Blandford, Nova Scotia but has spent most of her life in Chester where she is a well-known and much loved member of the community; and

Whereas throughout her life, Golda has been an active member of the Chester community working at various jobs such as a clerk at Hennigar's Store and at the English Sports Shop, as well as volunteering for St. Stephen's Anglican Church;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulates Golda Hawboldt and her family on her 100th Birthday and wishes her health and happiness in years to come.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

[Page 1079]

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Cole Harbour-Eastern Passage.

RESOLUTION NO. 699

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

Whereas Dorothy White has been an avid volunteer within the communities of Eastern Passage and Cow Bay; and

Whereas she has been the editor of the local newspaper, The Beacon, for 10 years along with being a member of the board of directors and treasurer of the Eastern Passage/Cow Bay Summer Carnival for several years, is also on the Board of Directors and is the Treasurer for Fisherman's Cove Committee; and

Whereas her hard work and dedication to these committee groups greatly enhance the overall success of each one;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of the House of Assembly join me in thanking Dorothy White for her outstanding efforts and commitment to our communities and wish her all the best in her future endeavours.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

[Page 1080]

The honourable member for Kings North.

RESOLUTION NO. 700

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

Whereas eight months a year the Good Neighbour Club of Centreville serves a Big Breakfast of eggs, bacon, sausages, homemade hash browns, homemade beans, coffee, tea, juice, and toast; and

Whereas the 40 volunteers serve an average of 260 people at each event as a fundraiser; and

Whereas the Good Neighbour Club celebrated the 8th Anniversary of this fundraising effort on February 19th;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate the Good Neighbour Club of Centreville on the 8th Anniversary of its Big Breakfast fundraiser and thank members for making their community a good place to live and grow.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Truro-Bible Hill-Millbrook-Salmon River.

RESOLUTION NO. 701

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

Whereas the Atlantic Superstore in Truro hosted the President's Choice Children's Charity Program with a focus on the Brighter Breakfast Program; and

Whereas all money raised returns to the local community to help with breakfast programs in schools and families with children with special needs; and

[Page 1081]

Whereas to date proceeds have provided essentials such as a seeing-eye dog, a backyard safety fence for an autistic child, three wheelchairs, and a bathtub lift;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate the Atlantic Superstore's President's Choice Children's Charity Program and wish it continued success in the future.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Timberlea-Prospect.

RESOLUTION NO. 702

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

Whereas Cassidy Megan of Shad Bay, Nova Scotia created the idea of Purple Day in 2008, motivated by her own struggles with epilepsy and Cassidy's goal was to get people talking about epilepsy in an effort to dispel myths and inform those with seizures that they are not alone; and

Whereas Cassidy Megan worked with MP Geoff Regan to pass Bill C-278, an Act Respecting a Day to Increase Public Awareness About Epilepsy, which was passed unanimously by Parliament in 2012 - the bill establishes March 26th as Purple Day; and

Whereas last year Cassidy Megan was among several young people across the Atlantic Provinces of Canada who were honoured for their activities within the Canadian Red Cross - and Cassidy Megan, at the age of 14, is one of the youngest recipients ever of the Canadian Red Cross Young Humanitarian Award;

Therefore be it resolved that on behalf of the Nova Scotia provincial government, and its constituencies, we send sincere congratulations on this remarkable achievement to Cassidy Megan and her family.

[Page 1082]

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Pictou West.

RESOLUTION NO. 703

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

Whereas Mr. Luke Demetre of Calgary, formerly of New Glasgow, participated at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia; and

Whereas Luke was part of Canada 3, a four-man bobsled team, for their final trip down the course; and

Whereas the Canada 3 bobsled team was in last place following a mishap but, with the help of Luke, finished the final run in 10th place out of 30 teams, at a time of 55.72 seconds;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Mr. Luke Demetre on his Olympic experience, and wish him well as he continues to train for the 2018 Winter Games in South Korea.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

[Page 1083]

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Clare-Digby.

RESOLUTION NO. 704

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

Whereas Gilberte and Siegmar Doelle, of Gilberts Cove, have won the Nova Scotia Farm Environmental Stewardship Award; and

Whereas the Doelles operate the Wild Rose Farm, a certified organic mixed vegetable, flower, herb, and livestock farm; and

Whereas the greenhouses on this farm are heated by sunlight;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly join me in congratulating Gilberte and Siegmar Doelle on being awarded the Nova Scotia Farm Environmental Stewardship Award.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Inverness.

RESOLUTION NO. 705

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

Whereas Hugh Allan (Buddy) MacMaster was awarded the Folk Alliance Lifetime Achievement Award for monumental contributions as a folk music performer in North America; and

[Page 1084]

Whereas Buddy joins 40 others awarded since 1995, including Pete Seeger, Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Harry Belafonte, Robert Johnson, and The Carter Family; and

Whereas he was chosen by a committee of 120 musicians, scholars, and presenters from the United States and Canada;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate my father, Buddy MacMaster, for the gift of music he has so generously shared over the years.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried. (Applause)

The honourable member for Fairview-Clayton Park.

RESOLUTION NO. 706

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

Whereas the students and staff of Fairview Junior High have successfully hosted a Multicultural Day on Thursday, January 30, 2014; and

Whereas the event was designed to celebrate the school's diversity and multiculturalism, and to showcase the students' many talents through unique performances and exhibits; and

Whereas the event promoted community inclusion and respect for all members of the community;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House of Assembly congratulate Fairview Junior High School for their efforts to increase community support for their members through the Multicultural Day activities.

[Page 1085]

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Hants West.

RESOLUTION NO. 707

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

Whereas nurses are a crucial part of our health care system; and

Whereas the high quality of care they provide is what Nova Scotians deserve and have come to expect of our health care system; and

Whereas the potential for patient care to be put at risk as hospitals ramp down services due to the labour dispute now exists;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly urge the Premier to take action to protect vulnerable Nova Scotians and ensure their health services are there when they need them.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear several Noes.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Sydney-Whitney Pier.

[Page 1086]

RESOLUTION NO. 708

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

Whereas Nancy Kinsman has worked 35 years for the Government of Nova Scotia; and

Whereas Nancy has worked for 13 Speakers of the House of Assembly in this Legislature; and

Whereas Nancy's last day working for the Nova Scotia Government and the House of Assembly will be Friday, March 28, 2014;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of the House of Assembly congratulate Nancy Kinsman for her dedication and years of service to all members of the Legislature, past and present.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Sackville-Beaver Bank.

RESOLUTION NO. 709

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

Whereas the Curves Bootilicious Girls is a major fundraising team for the Canadian Cancer Society Relay for Life in Sackville, Nova Scotia and Team Captain Brenda Kaulback is proud to lead a team that has raised a total of $33,489 since forming in 2009 - Brenda decided to relay as a way of remembering and honouring loved ones and friends, as well as a way to make a difference for those who are and will be fighting cancer; and

Whereas the Curves Bootilicious Girls begin fundraising immediately following the relay and work throughout the year to meet the fundraising target they set for themselves - fundraising takes many forms: flea markets, bingo nights, a bowling night and selling tickets on many items including breakfasts, potlucks and 50/50 tickets, and all items are donated and in the past have included art pieces and crafts; and

[Page 1087]

Whereas Brenda is enthusiastically planning for the 2014 relay in June, to share memories and know that they are making a difference;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House of Assembly recognize Brenda Kaulback, captain of the team Curves Bootilicious Girls, for her dedication to relaying and her determination to make a difference in the fight against cancer.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley.

RESOLUTION NO. 710

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

Whereas to many people in many cultures, music is an important part of their way of life; and

Whereas the community of Brookfield is enriched with musical talent consisting of so many individuals from church choirs to award-winning school bands; and

Whereas the Putnam Family, the Pioneers, and the Kitchen Trio are all well-known Brookfield musicians performing across Nova Scotia;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly acknowledge the tremendous gift of music blessed upon such a wide variety of Brookfield musical artists and wish them nothing but continued success.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

[Page 1088]

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Cumberland North.

RESOLUTION NO. 711

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

Whereas Larry Ogden, of Tidnish, Cumberland County, Nova Scotia, has received the 2014 Provincial Volunteer Award; and

Whereas Larry Ogden is being honoured for the tremendous contributions he has made to his community and to the province; and

Whereas Larry Ogden donates his time to help others by supporting the causes in which he believes, in various ways, and especially through the Pic 'n' Grin family;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House of Assembly commend Larry Ogden on being the honoured recipient of the 2014 Provincial Volunteer Award.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Kings North.

RESOLUTION NO. 712

[Page 1089]

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

Whereas Valley Regional Health Foundation gathers community support for major financial purchases of medical equipment to meet the province's requirement that the community provide 25 per cent of the required funding; and

Whereas through the generosity of thousands of donors the foundation has provided over $16 million to improve health care for the residents of Kings and Annapolis Counties; and

Whereas last December the foundation's annual Festival of Lights raised $182,000;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate the Valley Regional Health Foundation on another successful fundraiser and its mission of supporting health care in the Annapolis Valley.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations.

RESOLUTION NO. 713

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

Whereas the Bridgewater Junior High boys hockey team competed in the regional finals on March 4, 2014; and

Whereas the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team defeated North Kings Education Centre with a final score of 6 - 5, ending the season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team won their first regional banner in a junior high hockey tournament;

[Page 1090]

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly congratulate the Bridgewater Junior boys hockey team for their successful season and for winning their first regional banner.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Inverness.

RESOLUTION NO. 714

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

Whereas the Ivany report calls for a bold new direction for the province to combat the demographic and economic challenges faced by our province; and

Whereas Nova Scotia will lose close to 17 per cent of its working population by 2038; and

Whereas the Ivany report states that the responsibility for leadership and initiative rests with the private sector and with government;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly urge the new Liberal Government to govern by making the changes needed to turn our province around.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

[Page 1091]

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Communities, Culture and Heritage.

RESOLUTION NO. 715

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

Whereas Ben Russell of Cole Harbour is a member of the Canadian National Canoe and Kayak Team, 2007 Pan-Am Games bronze medallist, 2013 International Canoe Federation World Championship medallist, finalist in 2009, 2010 and 2011; and

Whereas Ben has been a community ambassador, motivational speaker, public affairs and coach at the Banook Canoe Club; and

Whereas Ben has been selected as part of the RBC Olympians and RBC Athlete at Canoe Kayak Canada, and now has his sights set firmly on the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games, where he hopes to win a gold medal in the C2 1,000-metre event;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly congratulate Ben Russell on his new inclusion in the RBC Olympians program and wish him continued success in the future.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid on an introduction.

HON. DAVID WILSON « » : Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I'd like to draw the members' attention to the east gallery, where we have a former member of the House. Sid Prest used to be the MLA for the Eastern Shore riding. I would just like all members to give him a warm welcome. (Applause)

[Page 1092]

MR. SPEAKER « » : The honourable Minister of Environment.

RESOLUTION NO. 716

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

Whereas Bryden Tate of Heatherton, Antigonish County, is the team captain of the St. Francis Xavier X-Men track and field team; and

Whereas he helped lead the team to their first-ever Atlantic University Sport Track and Field Championship, where he was a double gold medallist, winning both the 1,000- and 1,500-metre races; and

Whereas he was named AUS male track athlete of the year, as well as one of the Subway AUS Athletes of the Week for the period ending February 23, 2014;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House of Assembly congratulate Bryden on receiving these honours and for leading his team to victory.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Halifax Chebucto.

RESOLUTION NO. 717

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

Whereas Aerobics First is a local business that is dedicated and has high amounts of community spirit; and

Whereas during the annual trip to the Running Event tradeshow in Austin, Texas, held from December 3-6, 2013, the company was presented with the prestigious UBUNTU Award; and

[Page 1093]

Whereas Ubuntu is an African concept that means "welcoming, hospitable, warm, generous, and willing to share," and in recent years this store has formed partnerships with the Nova Scotia Lung Association and Learning to Run for Smokers, co-founded the Youth Running Series, and partnered up with Start 2 Finish, an after-school program that teaches strength and confidence through running;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly congratulate Aerobics First for all their hard work and dedication to give back to the community, strengthen local bonds, and create positive change.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Guysborough-Eastern Shore-Tracadie.

RESOLUTION NO. 718

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

Whereas Keagan Luddington of Torbay is a 13-year-old who was diagnosed with undetermined colitis in Grade 3 and has been living with the diagnosis since then; and

Whereas his application has been selected by the Make-A-Wish Foundation for a wish this year, and Keagan and his family have almost one year to plan for their once-in-a-lifetime trip - a Disney cruise with visits to interesting countries like Jamaica, Mexico, and other Caribbean locales; and

Whereas Keagan is looking forward to the trip, which will help him get through the two surgeries he has scheduled in July, and Keagan's message to other kids dealing with difficult medical conditions is to hope for the best and keep on truckin';

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly recognize Keagan for his upbeat outlook on life and be ever so mindful of the importance of the Make-A-Wish Foundation as they create miracles one wish at a time.

[Page 1094]

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Labour and Advanced Education.

RESOLUTION NO. 719

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

Whereas Ryan MacIsaac launched his business, The Battered Fish, out of a food truck in Bedford in 2009; and

Whereas The Battered Fish, which offers "fast-casual" dining with fresh-cooked seafoods and salads, has since expanded into four new locations in the Halifax region and plans continued expansion across Canada and the United States; and

Whereas The Battered Fish, with top-notch food and service standards, was the gold medal winner of the 2014 Halifax Business Awards presented in January by the Halifax Chamber of Commerce;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Ryan MacIsaac on his award and his plan to "share a little piece of Nova Scotia with the world."

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

[Page 1095]

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Dartmouth South.

RESOLUTION NO. 720

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

Whereas Renée Lavallée of Dartmouth is a chef, entrepreneur, and popular online food blogger; and

Whereas Renée recently fulfilled her dream of creating a community gathering place of excellent seasonal food and learning, by building on her downtown Dartmouth network and exploring her passion for cooking; and

Whereas Renée opened The Canteen, a sandwich shop with an exciting and delicious local, seasonal menu, at 66 Ochterloney Street in Dartmouth, on Monday, March 24, 2014;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House of Assembly join me in offering sincere congratulations to Renée Lavallée and her team on the opening of The Canteen, and wish her new business in downtown Dartmouth many years of success and prosperity.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

ORDERS OF THE DAY

[Page 1096]

ORAL QUESTIONS PUT BY MEMBERS

MR. SPEAKER « » : Question Period will begin at 2:53 p.m. and end at 3:53 p.m.

The honourable Leader of the Official Opposition.

HEALTH & WELLNESS - NURSES STRIKE: PATIENT - PROTECTION

HON. JAMIE BAILLIE « » : Mr. Speaker, my question is to the Premier. Today Capital Health has started ramping down their services to Nova Scotians in anticipation of a strike. Real Nova Scotians are now facing actual service cancellations and postponed important medical procedures. In other words, patient care is now already at risk, despite what the Premier says. My question to the Premier is, will he tell the House today how he plans to protect patient care, starting now?

HON. STEPHEN MCNEIL » : Mr. Speaker, as all members of this House would know, and indeed all Nova Scotians know, there are challenges between the employer, which is Capital Health, and NSGEU, when it comes to providing nursing services in the capital region. As they would also know, the process is unfolding through the collective bargaining process. We are, like all Nova Scotians, watching it and encouraging both sides to get back to the table to ensure that Nova Scotians have the services that they need and want, when they want them.

MR. BAILLIE « » : Mr. Speaker, what Nova Scotians know is that their Premier told them that he would protect their health care, but today real notices are going out about cancelled health care procedures, tests, and otherwise. They are not protected today because of the anticipation of a strike.

The Premier says he is disappointed in the actions on both sides and the amount of rhetoric that is being displayed in the media as the negotiations go on, yet he himself has jumped in with his own overheated rhetoric, making matters worse. He is the one who threatened nurses by questioning their licences and telling them that they were in violation of their code of ethics - and I will table those quotes for the benefit of the House.

I ask the Premier, how does questioning the integrity of nurses help protect patient care?

THE PREMIER « » : Mr. Speaker, the Leader of the Official Opposition couldn't be more wrong, quite frankly. We've continued to actually tell Nova Scotians the valuable contribution that nurses make in the health care system of this province. They do operate under a code of ethics and the Leader of the Official Opposition would know that it's the College of Registered Nurses that would be the body that those RNs and nurses would report to.

[Page 1097]

What we have clearly said is that in these very difficult times around bargaining we would like both sides to get back to the table to ensure that we find an agreement that both sides can live with, and that Nova Scotians actually receive the health care services when they want them, at the time they want them, Mr. Speaker.

MR. BAILLIE « » : Mr. Speaker, actually it's the Premier who is mistaken. What Nova Scotians want is a Premier who says the same thing - and saying something is not the same as doing something. They are looking for action now that real medical tests and procedures are being cancelled or postponed.

What I mean by that, Mr. Speaker, is that in Opposition the Premier actually encouraged the Government of Nova Scotia to get involved in a labour dispute at Capital Health, between the health authority and the workers. He said at that time, just a year ago, that they, meaning the government, are the employer, so it's important for them to make sure that they solve these disputes as quickly as possible, without the labour interruption. And I'll table that for the benefit of the Premier.

One week ago he said exactly the opposite, that he, himself, is actually not the employer, even though Nova Scotians know who ultimately is paying the bills and pulling the strings. So do you know what, Mr. Speaker? It's time for straight answers - will the Premier get to the point today, when real procedures are being cancelled and tell Nova Scotians the plan to protect their patient care?

THE PREMIER « » : Mr. Speaker, as you know, any time there is this kind of negotiation that is moving very close to potentially what could be a labour disruption, there are lots of anxieties, not only through those who are involved in this from a working point of view but obviously those Nova Scotians who are receiving and looking to receive those services. That's why we've continued to encourage both sides to get back to the table - the employer, which is Capital Health, and the NSGEU, which is the union representing the nurses in Capital Health.

Mr. Speaker, I'll go one step further, Nova Scotians know that if there's one Leader in this House who goes back on his word, it's not the Premier. (Applause)

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

HEALTH & WELLNESS: NURSES' POSITION - PREM. REASSURE

HON. MAUREEN MACDONALD « » : Mr. Speaker, my question is also through you to the Premier.

Mr. Speaker, 2,300 registered nurses throughout the Capital District Health Authority will be in a legal strike position on April 3rd. At the heart of this dispute is that nurses are regularly working short-handed - and I'm sure all members of this House are hearing from nurses who are very concerned about patient safety, as well as their own health and safety.

[Page 1098]

My question through you to the Premier is, will the Premier tell us what he is doing to reassure nurses that they are respected and they are heard?

THE PREMIER « » : Mr. Speaker, our government continues to ensure that Nova Scotians have access to health care where and when they need it. It is extremely important that we recognize the valuable contribution that all health care providers provide to the people of this province.

I want to remind all members of this House that it is Capital Health that is the employer in this dispute, Mr. Speaker, that is now dealing with the NSGEU, and through a number of times, through collective bargaining agreements across this province, unions and their employers have been able to work out the ratio when it comes to ensuring that the proper levels of staffing are happening in all the various aspects of delivering health care to this province.

MS. MACDONALD « » : Mr. Speaker, since contract talks have broken off, the Premier has done little more than add fuel to the fire by stating that nurses should face discipline before their licensing body if they take job action. He made these statements before the provincially-appointed mediator had even brought the parties together. I want to have the Premier explain how exactly such comments could be a constructive intervention into this dispute, especially at such a critical point in the negotiating process?

THE PREMIER « » : Mr. Speaker, it is our sincere hope that both the employer and the union will go back to the table. We've encouraged them at every turn to go back to the table so that we can try to find a negotiated settlement that would allow both sides to continue to provide the services to Nova Scotians that they require and that they want. It is our sincere hope that that happens.

I want to remind the members of this House that this contract has been outstanding for almost two years now. We've been in power for six months. This is a difficult challenge for all Nova Scotians, but we are watching and allowing the collective bargaining process to happen, and at the end of the day, we will make sure that Nova Scotians are protected when it comes to the delivery of health care services.

MS. MACDONALD « » : Mr. Speaker, the Premier may only have been the Premier for six months, but he sat in this House for many, many years, and said many, many things about the collective bargaining process. Let me remind him that when he sat on this side of the House he told Nova Scotians that he believed in collective bargaining, yet just 28 days ago we saw a reversal on that position with the home support workers.

[Page 1099]

I want to ask the Premier, why does he no longer believe in the collective bargaining process?

THE PREMIER « » : Mr. Speaker, I thank the honourable member for the question. I want to remind all members of this House that 28 days ago we brought in essential service legislation that protected the right to strike for health care workers. What we asked for was that, before job action took place, we ensured that the essential services of health care delivery were in this province.

I want to remind the Leader of the New Democratic Party that there has been a time in our history when the right to strike was taken away from health care workers - from paramedics, not too long ago, under the New Democratic Party Government of Nova Scotia. The only Party in this House that has taken away the right strike in recent history has been the New Democratic Party.

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

PREM.: COLLECTIVE BARGAINING - STANCE

HON. JAMIE BAILLIE « » : Mr. Speaker, I would like to return to the theme of Leaders who are consistent in what they say to the people of Nova Scotia. When he was running for office, the Premier told the Cape Breton Post that he wouldn't legislate against work stoppages in the health care system. Quoting directly, "The Liberals have no plans to legislate against work stoppages in the health system, McNeil said."

Hospital workers took him at his word on that, but of course that was when he was trying to get their votes. Now we're all waiting to see what the government's plan to protect patient care is. My simple question to the Premier, who said one thing six short months ago and is going to do the opposite now: which statement should Nova Scotians rely on today - what the Premier said when he was running, or the ones now?

THE PREMIER « » : Mr. Speaker, we're going to allow the collective bargaining process to continue. It is our hope that the employer and the union will come to the table to ensure that they find an agreement that satisfies both sides and that will ensure that we provide the services to Nova Scotians. At no time have I or our government, in any way, removed the right to strike from health care workers in this province, at any time.

MR. BAILLIE « » : Mr. Speaker, we are soon going to have a strike on our hands at Capital Health with the vital services that nurses provide. Surgeries, labs, and clinics are going to be scaled back or cancelled, or closed. The Premier has inflamed the situation by questioning the ethics of nurses, threatening to refer them to their own college of nurses. Nova Scotians do not want to see the end of their health care service or even a gigantic reduction in health care services. Can the Premier assure Nova Scotians today that their health care will not be lowered, reduced, or otherwise stopped due to a contract dispute?

[Page 1100]

THE PREMIER « » : Mr. Speaker, unlike the Leader of the Conservative Party, I believe in the collective bargaining process. We are allowing the collective bargaining process to happen. There are some challenges, but I want to assure all members of this House that this government believes in providing Nova Scotians with quality health care and that will be identified when our budget is delivered in a week.

MR. BAILLIE « » : Well Mr. Speaker, I guess the answer to that question is no, he can't assure them that their health care services won't be lowered, or reduced, or otherwise impacted over the next few weeks, and I remind the Premier that everything he says is recorded in this House and will be here for the benefit of all Nova Scotians to see next week, compared to what he is saying now, just like it was recorded six months ago in the election campaign.

Mr. Speaker, every Nova Scotian would agree that nurses are vital to our health care system. The care they provide is second to none. Nurses insist that their staffing levels on our wards and hospitals are inadequate and that they are overworked and stressed out. The Premier, of course, is trying to silence them on this issue by threatening to take them to their own college of nurses. My question to the Premier - the person responsible ultimately for the health care system - is, has he taken any steps to assure himself that our hospitals are, in fact, adequately staffed?

THE PREMIER « » : Mr. Speaker, we continue to monitor this situation to ensure that the health care will be provided to Nova Scotians. I want to remind the Leader of the Official Opposition that we are not the employer; it is Capital Health. We cannot refer any nurses to anything. He continues to try to find some way to move away from the point that he is against the collective bargaining process. Fortunately we believe in the collective bargaining process, we are allowing it to unfold and we will make sure that Nova Scotia's health care is protected.

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

PREM. - NURSES: STAFFING LEVEL - ACTION

HON. JAMIE BAILLIE « » : Mr. Speaker, quite frankly I think that Nova Scotians know full well where our party stands on protecting their health care in contract disputes. We know what the Premier is against. Honestly, we are trying to figure out what the Premier is for and what he intends to do and we are not getting any straight answers on that today, while already important procedures are starting to be cancelled or postponed.

It is the role of the government to lead and primarily to protect the health care that Nova Scotians rely on every day. Nurses are saying that they are overworked, that they are stressed out, that there is too much overtime, that there are real wards that are understaffed. They may be right. We have to find that out, Mr. Speaker, and ultimately it is the elected government that looks after our health care system. So I will ask the Premier quite simply, what action has the Premier taken to ensure there really are appropriate levels of nursing staff in our hospitals?

[Page 1101]

THE PREMIER « » : Mr. Speaker, I want to remind the Leader of the Official Opposition that the government is not at the bargaining table; it is the employer and the union. I also want to remind this House that the Minister of Health and Wellness, in the first five months of being the minister, has been traveling the province working with district health authorities to ensure that we streamline administration and health care system, ensure that we make sure they have the appropriate level of staffing in every hospital across this region, to ensure that every community gets access to health care when and where we need it at the appropriate levels and quite frankly, Mr. Speaker, that employees who work for district health authorities and work in the health care system feel appreciated.

MR. BAILLIE « » : Mr. Speaker, I know the nurses don't feel appreciated by a Premier who actually calls their ethics into question when they raise questions about whether our hospital wards are properly staffed or not. He can point the fingers at as many other places as he wants; it is his government that needs to make sure that our hospitals are properly staffed, not by threatening people who want to bargain collectively but by doing the job of running the province including our health care system. I will ask the Premier, when will he take steps to make sure our hospitals are properly staffed?

THE PREMIER « » : Mr. Speaker, through you to the Leader of the Official Opposition and all Nova Scotians, on October 22, 2013, this government started ensuring that not only would health care be properly staffed but that the money was being spent on front-line health care and not administration.

MR. BAILLIE « » : Mr. Speaker, we're going to see over the next few days how good a job the government does at making sure those health care services are there all of the time and for everybody that needs them. Today Capital Health is winding down real health care services to real Nova Scotians. That means that everyday people are going without the health care services that they need, and we're here in this House and we're ready to pass something that helps them know, without worry, that they'll get the care they need. But he doesn't answer the questions about what the plan is. We'll wait all through the weekend and into next week while more and more surgeries and other procedures are cancelled.

I will ask the Premier, why is even a ramp-down in our health service acceptable to him?

THE PREMIER « » : Mr. Speaker, it was indeed the hope of all Nova Scotians that the collective bargaining process would have worked by now and that we would have had a settlement that both sides would be happy with. But in the collective bargaining process, you end up reaching the point where both union and employer find it difficult at times; they move away from conversation. It's our hope that they get back to the table so that they can make sure that the strike will be averted and that Nova Scotians will continue to receive the health care services that they want.

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

MCNEIL GOV'T. - HEALTH CARE WORKERS: STRIKES - REASONS

HON. MAUREEN MACDONALD « » : Mr. Speaker, it's just been five months since this Party formed government, and Nova Scotia is already facing its second health care strike. Back in 2007, when the Premier sat on the Opposition benches, he wrote an opinion piece in which he said, "The collective bargaining process is working in Nova Scotia. Our healthcare workers want to be on the job, not the picket line." I'll table a copy of that opinion piece.

My question for the Premier is, why are health care workers suddenly having to go on the picket line under his government?

THE PREMIER « » : Mr. Speaker, I still believe the collective bargaining process is the right way to solve the issues that are being faced between the union and their employer in the health care sector. We're allowing that process to unfold. Quite frankly, the reason we've had two challenges come up is because the previous government ignored them for almost two years.

MS. MACDONALD « » : Mr. Speaker, I'd like the member to show me any of the disputes that the former government got into with the nurses of this province. That government respected the nurses in Nova Scotia. (Interruptions)

MR. SPEAKER « » : Order, order. The honourable Leader of the New Democratic Party has the floor.

MS. MACDONALD « » : I think I hit a nerve over there, Mr. Speaker.

In 2007, the Premier said in the same opinion piece, "Our [health care] system has not been plagued with strikes or work stoppages . . . In the last 25 years there have been three hospital strikes in Nova Scotia." Today that's 32 years, and there have been three.

My question for the Premier is, is a plague of chaos in the health care system what we can expect under your government?

THE PREMIER « » : No, Mr. Speaker. When I wrote that opinion piece in 2007 I had no idea that Nova Scotians would have a government that would neglect health care bargaining for four years like happened under the previous government. I want to assure the member and all Nova Scotians that this government is going to continue to work to make sure that all those who provide services to Nova Scotians recognize that they are appreciated and recognize that there's a fiscal challenge the province is in, and that we will operate and deliver those services inside of that envelope.

[Page 1103]

MS. MACDONALD « » : Mr. Speaker, I have one final quote from the Premier's 2007 opinion piece. He said:

"Many of the province's healthcare workers are on the front line everyday, they know what happens if they are not there to provide care to Nova Scotians when they need it. They know better than anyone else how important their jobs are and how much people rely on their care everyday (sic)."

So my final question to the Premier, Mr. Speaker, if he believes that nurses know best what they need to do their job, why is he publicly dismissing their concerns about the impact of staff shortages on public safety?

THE PREMIER « » : Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the honourable member for the question. There is absolutely no question that nurses and all health care providers provide a valuable service to Nova Scotians. It is our job, as government, to ensure that that service will be there, but we need to allow the collective bargaining process to happen, as an employer, working with the union.

I want to assure all members of this House that we have heard from nurses who want to continue to work; they want to ensure that the service is there for Nova Scotians. We hope their union and their employer can come together to ensure that all of those get an opportunity to continue to deliver the great quality of service they have been to Nova Scotians.

MR. SPEAKER « » : The honourable member for Pictou East.

FIN.: DEBT - ALLEVIATION

MR. TIM HOUSTON « » : Mr. Speaker, my question today is for the honourable Minister of Finance and Treasury Board.

We learned this week that the minister will table her budget on April 3rd; April 3rd is shaping up to be a terrible day for Nova Scotians. Sadly, we learned that this Liberal budget will not be balanced and that our debt will continue to increase.

While in Opposition in 2008, the Leader of the Liberal Party said that until we conquer our own debt, we will continue to be slaves to it, as well as our children and their children. I agree with that statement and I'm sure most members of this House do as well.

[Page 1104]

So my question today for the Minister of Finance and Treasury Board is, why has the minister chosen to allow Nova Scotians to continue to be slaves to debt, rather than take bold action to conquer it?

HON. DIANA WHALEN » : Mr. Speaker, I do appreciate the question from the honourable member. Again, the member doesn't know yet what's in our budget for next week but I have signalled that there will be a deficit, absolutely.

I think it's important for all members of the House to realize exactly how much our revenues have been hit, which I told the chamber of commerce this week, and how deeply we have to work hard to grow the economy. That's the best answer for us to get out of the situation and, in the meantime, we have critical services that have to be delivered.

MR. HOUSTON « » : Mr. Speaker, I thank the minister for her answer - it's not an answer that's unfamiliar to Nova Scotians. Nova Scotians are looking to the government for answers as to how we can do that, how we can get a plan to increase our revenues. Every day, in households across Nova Scotia, people are concerned about their own debt, people are losing sleep about the amount of their debt.

My question today is if Nova Scotians are concerned about debt, why doesn't this government seem to be concerned about it?

MS. WHALEN « » : Mr. Speaker, in answer to that, absolutely, I think all members of the House are concerned about the level of debt we carry. In the last four years the debt has risen by $1.5 billion and that's certainly something we would like to see slow down, stop, and eventually be reversed. That isn't something you can do in a time when there's not enough revenue to balance the books at this moment, so it's really a question of how we move forward - and with the help of all Nova Scotians. It isn't government's job alone to build the economy, we have to set the stage and work with Nova Scotians.

MR. HOUSTON « » : Mr. Speaker, I thank the minister for her answer and, indeed, I agree it is the job of government to create an environment where business has a chance to be successful. Nova Scotians are making sacrifices every day; every day they decide what they can afford and what they can't afford.

Mr. Speaker, the problem with debt is you have to service it. Our debt costs are impeding the government's ability to make the lives of Nova Scotians better. Our debt service costs today are the third-highest expenditure of the government - nearly $900 million to service our debt. That's $900 million that will not go to services; $900 million that will not go to tax relief; and $900 million that will not go to our health care services or education system. It will go towards our debt. We need to start finding an answer today to bring this debt down.

[Page 1105]

My question for the minister today is, why should Nova Scotians accept another year without leadership and a budget that will continue to enslave Nova Scotians to increasing debt and higher debt service costs?

MS. WHALEN « » : Mr. Speaker, I think the member opposite has done a good job explaining the scope of the debt. The impact that it has on our annual budget is significant and the cost really is a burden for all Nova Scotians and all of us who seek services and know that the money is going elsewhere, but that is a debt that has grown over many, many years. A great deal of it grew during the years of the Tory Government in the 1980s, a huge increase. It has grown over a long time and it is not something that you can immediately turn around.

I think we have to look to the future to grow our economy, to seize a lot of the opportunities that we have in different sectors and to really build up our business community, again, through creating the right environment, in order to get the money that we need to start working on this big issue. Thank you.

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

LAE: LBR. RELATIONS - CONSULTANT

HON. FRANK CORBETT « » : Mr. Speaker, my question is to the Minister of Labour and Advanced Education. Previous to the election of this Liberal Government, work stoppages in health care were about as commonplace as the Leafs making the playoffs, but now since the short five months this crowd has been in power, we have seen strikes by home care workers and now they are threatening to cause a strike with nurses in the Capital District Health Authority.

I want to ask the minister, just a month ago they gave around $100,000 to a has-been Liberal Cabinet Minister from Ontario to tell the Minister of Finance how to run the taxes in the Province of Nova Scotia, are they contemplating the same, getting an outside Liberal hack to help them understand labour relations in Nova Scotia?

HON. KELLY REGAN « » : Mr. Speaker, I do believe "hack" is probably unparliamentary so the member may wish to withdraw that particular remark for a start, but that is the Speaker's ruling. I would note that the person to whom he is referring is a respected woman parliamentarian and I realize that the folks over there sometimes have difficulty with strong women. I would note that, in fact, the member is in error. The last time the Leafs made the playoffs or won a championship would have been in 1967 and, in fact, they had a strike last year in the health care system. Thank you.

MR. CORBETT « » : Mr. Speaker, to be fair to the minister, I realize more often than not what befalls her department is put there by the Premier and they are kind of forced to do the Premier's bidding. My question to the Minister of Labour and Advanced Education is, has she advised the Premier that the damage he has done to the health care workers in this province will not be easily undone and will she stand up for the workers of this province and not for the Premier?

[Page 1106]

MS. REGAN « » : Mr. Speaker, I would note that when the union applied and asked for a mediator, I, in fact, appointed a mediator. I have been pretty clear here that we expect both sides to negotiate and we are waiting for that process to play out. For the member to suggest that people aren't doing their jobs or whatever, when they had a strike in the health care system, is beyond the pale.

MR. CORBETT « » : Mr. Speaker, I would like to know what strike the Labour Minister is talking about - imaginary - there was no strike. Anyway, I'm going to table an article here from The Chronicle Herald where the minister, then in Opposition - I believe she was the Education Critic - said that we don't believe in take-it-or-leave-it ultimatums; we're not collective bargaining. That's what she said back then, Mr. Speaker.

Just a few weeks ago the Premier told home care workers if they didn't take the deal that was on the table, there would be something worse there. I want to ask that minister, why is she doing the Premier's bidding? Why does she support the Premier and his attack on locals and the unions and health care that are predominantly made up of women? Why is she leading that charge against women in the workforce, Mr. Speaker?

MS. REGAN « » : Mr. Speaker, as I pointed out in another op-ed just recently, many of the people who are receiving home care are women, and the majority of elderly people are women. So we were protecting those women who relied on that particular service. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER « » : The honourable member for Pictou West.

ERDT: JOBS FUND - CABINET CONTROL

MS. KARLA MACFARLANE « » : Mr. Speaker, my question through you is for the Minister of Economic and Rural Development and Tourism. As we all know, the Traves report was released last week. In Official Opposition, the Liberals agreed that the Cabinet should not - and I repeat, should not - be in control of the Cabinet-controlled Jobs Fund. The Traves report also says that the Jobs Fund should have independent oversight.

Will the minister commit to removing Cabinet control from this fund?

HON. MICHEL SAMSON » : Mr. Speaker, we welcome the report from Dr. Traves, in which he did recommend that there be an independent body that would oversee decisions being made by what is currently known as the Jobs Fund. I have indicated that the Jobs Fund will be no more, and that you will be seeing changes made to that body that will incorporate the changes made by the Traves report as well.

[Page 1107]

Mr. Speaker, actions speak louder than words. Since we have been elected, other than the Yarmouth ferry deal, which had been negotiated by the previous administration, our government has not used the Nova Scotia Jobs Fund.

MS. MACFARLANE « » : Thank you, minister, for your informative answer. We all know that for decades we practised corporate handouts, and we know that it clearly doesn't work. We don't need a second NSBI or another layer of bureaucracy to hold up important economic investments. I'm just wondering, when will we get on with the game changes that this province needs, and when will you show real leadership in taking those bold changes?

MR. SAMSON « » : Obviously, as soon as we did come into office, we initiated a number of changes, a number of reviews. We asked Dr. Traves to review the tools being used in Economic and Rural Development and Tourism. As well, we undertook a review of venture capital to see whether that was being used as well as it should be used to the benefit of this province.

We just received a report a week ago. We are working through that right now, as indicated. Changes are coming to the Jobs Fund, and we're looking forward to implementing Dr. Traves' recommendations. In fact, a lot of that work is currently underway. A number of initiatives have already been implemented, and I'll certainly be announcing more in the days and weeks to come.

MS. MACFARLANE « » : Mr. Speaker, the Liberal Party ran an election based on a promise and a message that there would be no more public money for big companies. In Official Opposition, the Premier said the following about the Cabinet-controlled fund: "This is nothing more than a sham. Government should be embarrassed to stand up and suggest that this is rebranding, that this is about trying to be optimistic about the future. This is nothing more than keeping the old fund available to this Cabinet. If they really wanted to try something different, maybe they would have moved the investment arm out of government to an arm's length, the business arm."

My question is, is this a case of the Liberal Party saying one thing before the election and another after, or will the minister promise to move the investment arm out of government?

MR. SAMSON « » : Mr. Speaker, sometimes it's a disadvantage to having been around this Legislature a long time, but other times it becomes useful. I remember the 1999 election campaign. In fact, I believe the Leader of the Official Opposition may be able to assist the member, because I believe he may have worked on the platform at that time for the John Hamm Government, which promised that if elected it would not use the Industrial Expansion Fund and there would be no more handouts to business. Now that lasted about six months before Premier Hamm brought back the Industrial Expansion Fund. Now I have to say in his defence, he was an amateur in the use of that fund compared to the last government that used $800 million dollars of taxpayers' money through that fund with little to no oversight.

[Page 1108]

Mr. Speaker, as I said in my previous answer, actions speak louder than words. Other than the Yarmouth ferry funding, which was negotiated by the previous government, our government has not used the Nova Scotia Jobs Fund and the Nova Scotia Jobs Fund will exist no longer, once the changes are implemented.

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

HEALTH & WELLNESS: NURSES - BREAKS

HON. DAVID WILSON « » : Thank you, Mr. Speaker, my question today is through you to the Minister of Health and Wellness. Every day in our province nurses are providing a care to Nova Scotians when they need it the most. It is a hard job; it's a frustrating job, and at times it can be a thankless job. You don't have to take my word for it. In November the Health Minister told The Chronicle Herald, "And nobody should have to come to work and work in an environment where there's no chance of getting a break whatsoever from the demands of the job because they are one nurse short."

But today, while nurses at Capital Health are saying they are regularly working shorthanded and are worried about patient safety, we have the Premier in the media stating that there are enough nurses. So I'd like to ask the Minister of Health and Wellness, through you, Mr. Speaker, if he thinks nurses at Capital Health deserve to be given a break when they need it or does he agree with the Premier that they are asking for too much?

HON. LEO GLAVINE « » : I thank the honourable member for the question. One of the basic realities and facts about the number of nurses in Nova Scotia is that as a group we are well above the national average on a given floor, a given unit. We can have a call-in, very late before a shift, and there may be times when staff is down a little bit. But overall we don't hear of major complaints about lack of staffing to handle - especially at the QEII - the highest levels of tertiary care. Those patients are getting outstanding care from the nurses at the QEII.

MR. DAVID WILSON « » : I'm hearing from nurses quite often over the last number of months and what the minister is describing is not what I'm hearing from those nurses. On February 6th of this year the minister wrote in the column of the Kings County Register, "As minister of health, it is my job to improve the health of all citizens. To do this, we need a population that looks after its own health." One of those ways the public could look after its own health, the minister said, was by listening to nurses prescribing daily exercise.

So my question through you, Mr. Speaker, to the Minister of Health and Wellness, is simple. If he thinks it crucial for our health care system for Nova Scotians to listen to nurses, why is this government refusing to do the same?

[Page 1109]

MR. GLAVINE « » : Mr. Speaker, through you to the honourable member, we first of all have the highest regard for nurses right across Nova Scotia. We listen to them. At the present time there is a very challenging, very difficult labour dispute between their employer and the Nova Scotia Government & General Employees Union. On a day-to-day basis, the work that our nurses do in our hospitals, in public health, in nursing homes, in all those areas - we will continue to listen to what they need in the profession. We know that we're fortunate to have three outstanding nursing training institutions in the province and daily, their work as a result of that great training, goes into practise to provide high quality care for Nova Scotians, right across the province.

MR. DAVID WILSON « » : Mr. Speaker, I don't think the minister came close to answering my question, but that's okay, I think that's his role. I was there one point in time, so I completely understand.

In the same article from February 6th, the minister also said, "Imagine if health care works like banks." My question to the minister, is he going to continue running his department like a bank, placing dollars and cents ahead of patient safety and nurses' collective bargaining rights, or is he going to start doing his job which, he says, is to improve the health care of all citizens of our province?

MR. GLAVINE « » : Mr. Speaker, I think the first months have gone well as I've gotten to know the system from one end of the province to the other. I think you'll see that our budget for health this year will speak volumes in terms of wanting to improve the system, reduce wait times, and make sure that our nurses and all employees in the health care system are adequately compensated. And that regard for their work, in fact, will be seen as we put on the table what I consider to be a responsible and a responsive call to making sure there are dollars for Nova Scotians to get the care they well deserve.

MR. SPEAKER « » : The honourable member for Clare-Digby.

FISH. & AQUACULTURE: MAR. LOBSTER PANEL REPT. - UPDATE

MR. GORDON WILSON « » : Mr. Speaker, I have a question for Minister Colwell, Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture.

MR. SPEAKER « » : Order, please. I just want to remind the member for Clare-Digby that the questions be directed through the Chair and not refer to the minister by name.

MR. GORDON WILSON « » : Mr. Speaker, my apologies.

The lobster industry in Nova Scotia is a $1 billion industry engaging upwards of 13,000 people from Yarmouth to Cape Breton. Yesterday an historic lobster summit was held, bringing together three Maritime Fisheries Ministers and more than 200 fishermen, processors, and industry experts to discuss the four key recommendations outlined in the Maritime Lobster Panel Report released last Fall.

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Will the Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture provide the House with an update on the importance of this summit and the industry?

HON. KEITH COLWELL » : Mr. Speaker, I am only too pleased to do that. It is an historic day today, we had the three Atlantic Fisheries Ministers and also the federal minister working co-operatively toward moving the lobster industry to a sustainable, profitable industry in Nova Scotia and indeed in Atlantic Canada. It has been an historic day and we continue to work together and try to evolve these industries into a profitable industry from the wharf right through to the people who sell the lobster in an international market. Indeed we have to move forward and grow the economy in the lobster industry, as we do in the fishing industry and the other industries I represent.

It's a pleasure to see this happening; it's a wonderful relationship we've struck with the other two provincial governments and the federal government and it is historic. In the past there hasn't been that type of co-operation and I'm very proud to say our government is encouraging that, and we'll move forward to make sure that our industries are profitable now and in the future.

MR. SPEAKER « » : The honourable member for Kings North.

MAR. LOBSTER PANEL REPT.: RECOMMENDATIONS - UPDATE

MR. JOHN LOHR « » : Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture. Again, I would commend the Canadian Lobster Value Recovery Summit for meeting during such inclement weather in the last two days. I know those have been very important meetings and have had a number of results.

The Maritime Lobster Panel Report that was presented four months ago had a number of recommendations - I believe 33 recommendations. Can the minister provide an update on where we are with those 33 recommendations in that report?

HON. KEITH COLWELL « » : Mr. Speaker, that will take a lot longer than we have today and tomorrow and next week to answer all of those 33 requirements, but we are making progress in the industry. We are moving forward, we have been working with the industry sector, and we have many challenges, as all my colleagues in this Legislature who represent rural fishing communities would know.

We are making progress. We will continue to work with the industry at all levels and to ensure that we have those in place. It's extremely important that we do. This is the most important employer in the whole province, the fishing industry, and a lot of people don't realize that. We've exceeded $1 billion in export sales this year alone, and we employ roughly 13,500 people directly, but over 22,000 people in the province - by far the largest employer in the province.

[Page 1111]

MR. LOHR « » : Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture for that answer. There are seven recommendations in that that are due within the first six months of 2014, and one of those is that the government immediately begin to work to ensure proper legislation is prepared and ready when the industry decides to proceed with the approach.

My question to the minister is, will the minister be tabling legislation in this session to support the changes the industry wants to make?

MR. COLWELL « » : Mr. Speaker, we will not be presenting legislation this session of the Legislature around that issue. Fortunately, we do not have to do that. We can do it by regulation.

MR. LOHR « » : Mr. Speaker, I know that one of the results that came out of the summit in the last two days was an endorsement of the levy. I would like to ask the minister, would the minister be providing regulations to see that the levy is put in place as the industry has indicated that it wants?

MR. COLWELL « » : Mr. Speaker, the answer to that question is yes. But we want to consult with the industry more before we do that. It's not only going to be Nova Scotia that does this. It's going to be Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick as well. We're working co-operatively with the other two provinces, as we will with the federal government, to ensure we can put a levy in place that will market Nova Scotia - not only Nova Scotia lobster, but a Canadian-brand lobster that will demand a much higher price than we get today, ultimately putting more money on the wharves and in the hands of fishermen in Nova Scotia as well as the processors and everyone in between.

It's important we do this, and important we do it in an orderly manner. I'm looking forward to the consultation we will have with industry. At the end of the day, we're going to implement that.

MR. SPEAKER « » : The honourable member for Pictou Centre.

SNSMR - IVANY REPT.: GOALS - MIN. STANCE

HON. PAT DUNN « » : Mr. Speaker, my question through you is to the Minister of Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations. One of the goals of the Ivany commission was to reform municipal government and regional service structures. The commission said the government should initiate a comprehensive review of municipal government structures with an eye to improving efficiency, cost effectiveness, and community engagement.

[Page 1112]

My question to the minister is, does the minister agree with this Ivany goal?

HON. MARK FUREY « » : Mr. Speaker, certainly the Ivany report is a valid document and a document that we support. The component around municipal reform is first and foremost in my mind and the staff in our department. Over the past number of weeks we've worked vigorously with a number of municipalities to pursue that very option.

MR. DUNN « » : Mr. Speaker, at 8:19 p.m. Tuesday, under the cover of darkness, on the eve of a storm, the minister issued a press release, which I will table, saying that the Liberal Government will not contribute to a study on a regional governance model in Pictou County. Despite the minister's anticipated commitment to the Ivany goals, he threw up his hands and walked away rather than roll up his sleeves and work to improve the services for the people of Pictou County.

Why won't the minister lead the way to a solution for Pictou County residents rather than walking away when the going gets tough?

MR. FUREY « » : Mr. Speaker, I value the question from my colleague. I actually travelled to Pictou County on the eve of the storm and spent a couple of hours with the elected officials - mayors, wardens, and CAOs. I shared the findings of our discussion of two weeks previous. I want to assure my colleague that this government is taking the lead in municipal reform and I'll be back to Pictou County next week to further discussions with municipalities that want to pursue another model of government.

MR. DUNN « » : Mr. Speaker, the Mayor of the Town of Pictou estimates that the town has the economic resources to survive three to five years. Westville is running a deficit as the 2013-14 budget year winds to a close. Meanwhile, the minister seems to be showing up for some meetings but is also taking a hands-off approach to municipal reform in Pictou County. Why is he prepared to watch communities that need the leadership now, not next year or the year after, while communities are dissolving, instead of working towards solutions immediately?

MR. FUREY « » : Actually that's exactly what this government is doing. We continue, through our travels, to engage our municipal colleagues and to openly discuss and support their initiatives. We will continue to do that and, as I said, we'll be back in Pictou County next week.

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

FIN.: MARCH MADNESS - POSITION

[Page 1113]

HON. MAUREEN MACDONALD « » : Mr. Speaker, my question through you is to the Minister of Finance and Treasury Board. Under the previous government the practice of March madness, or unplanned year-end spending, was abolished. As a former Minister of Finance was fond of saying, a penny saved should be a penny saved.

My question for the Minister of Finance and Treasury Board (Interruption) I'm sorry, Mr. Speaker, I thought the Minister of Natural Resources had a question he wanted to ask. (Interruption) Do you have a question?

MR. SPEAKER « » : Order, please. Please proceed with your question, honourable Leader of the New Democratic Party.

MS. MAUREEN MACDONALD « » : Mr. Speaker, my question for the Minister of Finance and Treasury Board is this, what is her government's official position on March madness, with respect to year-end spending?

HON. DIANA WHALEN « » : Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the question that has been asked by the member opposite. In fact, when the previous government had a program to shine a spotlight on March madness and try and put an end to it, I thought that was the right thing to do. About a month ago I did send a letter out to my Cabinet colleagues and to those departments saying that I thought we should continue to be very alert to that. Thank you.

MS. MAUREEN MACDONALD « » : Mr. Speaker, that's a very good minister who would continue an initiative that was quite successful. My question to the minister is this, is she aware of whether or not her directive to her colleagues throughout the Cabinet has been followed or not?

MS. WHALEN « » : Mr. Speaker, I think as the member would know, certainly in the last month and six weeks and more, we have been doing intensive discussions with each of the departments about spending. Anything above a certain amount comes back to Treasury Board for approval, even outside of the budget discussions that we've been having.

To the best of my knowledge, the departments are well aware of the need to conserve. That doesn't mean spending stops in March. I think the minister would be aware of that, that there's still some need for spending, that items arise that may not have been foreseen, but it means there is scrutiny about that. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER « » : The honourable member for Inverness.

ENVIRON.: WOOD ASH FERTILIZER - GOV'T. APPROVAL

[Page 1114]

MR. ALLAN MACMASTER « » : Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Environment. Last Fall I was contacted by farmers in Inverness County who use wood ash from the Point Tupper biomass plant to fertilize their fields. It's a low-cost alternative to fertilize; it improves crop yields and of course it eliminates having to dump it in a landfill.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency maintains that it is safe for use and I understood at the time that this government agreed. However, I understand that now the government is saying no to it. Why not allow the farmers to make good use of this resource?

HON. RANDY DELOREY « » : I do recall the scenario that played out in the Fall with respect to wood ash, Mr. Speaker. What actually did take place is that there were some changes in the regulatory body that govern the components that make up that wood ash. There were some concerns about some of the heavy metal components in that output and laying that out in our fields. The position taken in the Fall was that we had inconclusive information and we allowed the product to continue until we had conclusive information. The information has been clarified and a new position has been taken.

I would refer, potentially, to the Minister of Agriculture who may have more to add if you have further questions about the response that has been taken in the agricultural space on that decision.

MR. MACMASTER « » : Mr. Speaker, as I understand, all agricultural products that are sold and applied to fertilized fields have to meet the Canadian Food Inspection Agency standards, and all other provinces are following these standards. The fact that we are using a different standard here now is hurting the business case for farming operations right across the province. The CFIA agrees that the ash is safe and beneficial, and our farmers want to use it. Why not let them use it?

MR. DELOREY « » : In the case of the particular ash product here in the Province of Nova Scotia, it has not been certified by the federal agency. In fact, what the Department of Environment is regulating is a waste product from the facility producing the ash, and in fact we do have different regulations for managing waste products - those are the regulations that my department puts in place. The product in question has not been certified by the federal government as indicated. If it was, it would perhaps raise a different set of questions.

MR. MACMASTER « » : Mr. Speaker, I understand it's now being classified as a Class B fertilizer. I think the government needs to be careful, because I also understand that lime is considered a Class B fertilizer and in effect they may be suggesting that the agricultural community cannot use lime. So there have been decades of research to show the value and safety of wood ash to agriculture.

Other provinces and states have even given environmental awards for wood ash programs, and not only has this program improved soil pH, it has also reduced a reliance on fossil fuel fertilizers. Will the minister reconsider his decision?

[Page 1115]

MR. SPEAKER « » : Order, please. The time allotted for the Oral Question Period has expired.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. MICHEL SAMSON « » : Mr. Speaker, in light of the fact that this is our first day of the Spring session, and in light of the very productive Fall session that we had, there is currently no government business on the order paper. As a result of that, that concludes the government's business for today.

Mr. Speaker, we will meet tomorrow - Friday - from the hours of 9:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. and during that time, after Orders of the Day, under Government Business, we will be calling second reading of Bill Nos. 32, 33, and 34 which were all introduced today.

Mr. Speaker, with that I move that the House do now rise to meet again tomorrow from the hours of 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

MR. SPEAKER « » : The motion is that the House rise to meet again tomorrow, March 28th, between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m.

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

The motion is carried.

We stand adjourned until 9:00 a.m. tomorrow, right after breakfast.

We've now reached the moment of interruption. The Adjournment motion was submitted by the honourable member for Pictou East, and we will now move on to the late debate.

The Adjournment motion as submitted by the honourable member for Pictou East reads:

"Therefore be it resolved that the Liberal Government's mishandling of the negotiations with nurses at Capital Health will cause the cancellation of important tests and procedures and is putting patient safety at risk."

ADJOURNMENT

[Page 1116]

MOTION UNDER RULE 5(5)

MR. SPEAKER « » : The honourable member for Pictou Centre.

HEALTH & WELLNESS: CAP. HEALTH/NURSES - NEGOTIATIONS

HON. PAT DUNN « » : Mr. Speaker, Capital Health began ramping down their services today to prepare for a possible strike. They reported their emergency services plan, which shows just how significant the cutbacks will be. The government cannot stand idly by while real Nova Scotians have their health care put in jeopardy due to a labour dispute. People need to know their health care is going to be there when they need it.

Nurses are vital to our health care system, and the care they provide is second to none. Nova Scotians deserve better than this. The high-quality care our nurses offer is something they have come to expect of our health care system. People across the province would agree that nurses' work is incredibly hard, and they may have an excellent point regarding workloads and staffing in our wards. It is up to the government, who ultimately oversees the hospitals, to make sure they are properly staffed. Real Nova Scotians are going to be impacted by the cutbacks in health services, and we all know people who have been impacted. These people are afraid, and so am I.

Starting today, the in-patient detox unit will close. There will be no nurses in the hematology clinic. There will be no eye surgeries, and patients admitted to the hospital will be put on huge, long waiting lists, as more than 50 per cent of the beds are closing. Patients who travel to Nova Scotia to be treated at our renowned QEII Health Sciences Centre have already been transferred back to Prince Edward Island. Patients from out of province who were scheduled to have cardiac surgeries performed here are already being rerouted.

Capital Health has reported that the East Coast Forensic Hospital will have staffing levels they have deemed unsafe. This is unacceptable. Nova Scotians cannot stand by while important services like these become unavailable. They deserve better than that.

The government has done nothing but add overheated rhetoric to this problem, which does not do anything to help protect patients. The government has made the situation worse by antagonizing nurses and showing a lack of leadership. This government needs to guarantee that Nova Scotians will have access to health care they can rely on. Cooler heads must prevail to protect patients.

In closing, Mr. Speaker, the government should reflect on how dangerous this situation could get and make sure nurses are heard and respected. Thank you.

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

HON. MAUREEN MACDONALD « » : Mr. Speaker « » :Interruptions)

[Page 1117]

MR. SPEAKER « » : Sorry about that, my error.

The honourable Minister of Health and Wellness.

HON. LEO GLAVINE « » : Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to have an opportunity today to speak to a very important issue that is at hand in the Capital District of the province. First of all, I think all of us in the province at one time or another have had contact with a nurse in one of our hospitals, our health care centres, nursing homes, public health, or through our school system.

I think it's very important to state clearly and categorically that the work of nurses is critical to providing top-quality health care in our province. They are well-trained, with many, many years of collective experience. In fact, a lot of very specialized training is required, especially for a number of nurses who provide and assist with the tertiary level care that is provided at the QE II.

I think it's very important, however, to set a little bit of context in that nurses are part of a team and today in our health care system we know that scopes of practice have changed really fairly dramatically over a couple of decades and so there's a great number of support staff, there are new technologies that assist nurses in their work. Having the right complement of all the professionals, as much of the modern technology and support certainly aids in the flow of work of our nurses.

We also need to be cognizant of the fact that this is a Capital Health and NSGEU issue. The work in nine of our 10 districts will go on and in fact, as part of the contingency plan, some of the nine districts are prepared to take patients back, prepared to assist patients in terms of making sure that they get the appropriate service that they require. So it is indeed fortunate that we do have that ability to rely on, again, other districts to support in the event of a strike, that patients and Nova Scotians can be assured they will have access.

Does it mean there will be a slowdown in services? That's pretty obvious, when we don't have the normal complement of nurses in their units and on their floors. However, we hope that if there is a strike, that the emergency provisions that are in the current contract will make sure that those who are in need of emergency care, urgent care, obviously dialysis, these areas that are required on a very regular basis, somebody who is in chemotherapy, radiation - we certainly don't want to see any disruptions taking place.

You know, I've put a lot of faith in the process of reaching what we would hope is a fair and equitable settlement. We know that sometimes it may not be about staffing ratios, it may be about responsiveness to acuity levels, to scheduling. I know a new program did provide in the early days some challenges, but it is my understanding that it is working much better and making the kind of adjustments that are required.

A hospital, and especially a place like the QE II in particular, is a very, very dynamic institution that requires a great deal of flexibility, as well, in terms of having the right number of nurses, the nursing experience level and specialized skills that are required. We all realize that there in fact may be some times when that may not be quite to the level, but we know that Capital Health administration, nurse managers, work diligently to make sure that that in fact is in place on a daily basis and responds to the varied needs.

[Page 1118]

I think it's important to point out at this time that with having two unions in the province - we have one with over 5,000 nurses who are also very cognizant of the fact of having the right number of nurses, the right complement at a given time. I do understand that the language of the contract signed in October provides that kind of flexibility that will allow them to deal with higher levels of workload. Also, if we have seasonal variations that come along, especially due to flu, sometimes there can be higher levels of patients who are receiving chemotherapy and so forth.

The Nova Scotia Nurses' Union was the first in the Atlantic Provinces to achieve language that allows for that kind of important adjustment without having to appeal and without having to go through any rigorous process in order to get the right number of nurses that are required on a given basis. I think that is great progress.

In terms of the mandatory nurse-patient ratios, I think it takes away - this is my perspective - that it does take away some of the flexibility and it can have some negative impact on the health care system as hospitals in California experienced when they brought in mandatory nurse-to-patient ratios. In fact, on my tour I had a couple, a husband and wife nursing team, who gave me their personal account of having been in a California hospital when nurse-patient ratios came in. When they came in, they applauded. They said this is a good day that we're going to have an extra nurse, an extra pair of hands, that kind of professionalism that will allow us to do a higher quality of job.

However, that was fine; it worked for about six months. The next year they were dealing with the same budget, and this was right across hospitals in California, and out the door started going an LPN, clerical staff, night watchmen, reduced hours of pharmacists. You have so many dollars to run the institution and they found that in order to keep the nurse ratios that had been mandated, they were not able to keep the complement of complete staff that they required.

I think if we leave it to health care administrators to collaborate, to develop a viable and sustainable formula for what is best on a given floor, on a given day, in a given week, that kind of professionalism will come through. It does not need the kind of strict nurse-patient ratios. We can go in most hospitals during summertime when we know that surgeons take holidays as well, and there may not be as many surgeries or may not be as many procedures going on. We need flexibility in the system and I believe that can be achieved without that current outstanding issue. Thank you.

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

[Page 1119]

HON. MAUREEN MACDONALD « » : Mr. Speaker, I'd like to thank the Official Opposition for bringing forward this resolution so we can have a bit of a debate here at, I think, a very important time on a very important topic.

There is this kind of cliché that you often hear - but clichés come from reality in some ways, they are generally based on fact - and it is that nurses are the backbone of the health care system. I would say that, as someone who is a health care professional, a social worker, and who very much values the team approach in health care, it would be a grave mistake on anyone's part to think that other members of the health care team, in any way, shape or form, are the same as a nurse, or can substitute in terms of the work that nurses do. You know, physiotherapists, OTs, social workers, pharmacists - we all have our roles to play in the health care system, but very few of us work 24/7 at the bedside providing that hands-on care when people are critically ill and in need of monitoring in terms of what the physician has prescribed, and the monitoring of the vital signs which are so absolutely critical in an acute care facility or, indeed, in a tertiary care facility.

So make no mistake about this, Mr. Speaker, if nurses in this province, experienced nurses and new nurses - but I'm hearing from nurses who have been in the system for 25, 28, and 30 years - make no mistake that those nurses are saying that the system is broken in terms of workplace overload, and that it's putting them under an enormous amount of stress and distress in terms of the care that they are able to provide. Then Houston, we have a problem - and we need to be listening to that problem, and we need to be responding to that problem.

I think minimizing the problem - and I've heard the Minister of Health and Wellness, and I've heard the CEO from the Capital District Health Authority talk about the team, and I'm all for team in the health care field but, let's be crystal clear, if nurses are calling in sick and they are working short-handed and they're feeling stressed and they are concerned about the kind of care that patients are receiving, then we all should be very, very, very concerned about that.

Mr. Speaker, I think pretty much everybody has a nurse in their family. My grandmother was a nurse, and I look up and down my street and I have on my street these neighbours who are just wonderful, wonderful women who work in the nursing profession: a young woman who works in the ER at the IWK, and a woman who is probably more my age, who after a very long period of time in the health care field the stress and the strain of doing that work affected her own health to the point that she was unable to be a nurse anymore. I see the kind of passion that my young neighbour brings to her profession, and I've observed the passion that my older neighbour has brought to her profession and I see the end result of working in this field for many, many years and the cost that that can have, the personal toll it will take on nurses.

We need to be very careful about how we address this issue. This is a serious issue, it needs to be taken seriously and it needs to be treated with the kind of attention that we would give to any workplace where people are telling us that the conditions are not good conditions under which to perform their work.

[Page 1120]

The minister talked about California and the fact that mandatory ratios did not work in California. You know, Mr. Speaker, I have no views on mandatory ratios - I'm not a nurse, I'm not somebody who works on the front lines, I'm not a nurse manager, I have no skills in terms of planning the delivery of health care in an acute care situation, but what I do know something about is health care and health care in different parts of the world. And I'll tell you if there is one state in the U.S. which I would not go to as a matter of fact to look for practice to transport into our country necessarily, let me tell you if there was a state that I wouldn't look at it would be the State of California. Anybody who has spent any time reading about not just health care in the United States, but police services and fire services and public services more generally, would not look at the State of California.

The State of California has, in their preoccupation to not have any public services, entered into a kind of public policy there that has robbed citizens of that state of any quality public services whatsoever. So I don't think it is the best reference point for us to look at, in terms of whether mandatory nurse-patient ratios are something that can succeed or not. Surely with all the resources that the government has available to it, it can look further than the State of California.

The final point, Mr. Speaker - and I'm not sure how much time I have left - but the final point I would say is how important it is for us to encourage the parties to get back to the table and reach a negotiated settlement there. The deep concern I have is that the government has botched this and has made it less likely that a negotiated settlement is possible. The reason for that is the way this government dealt with the health care workers.

You know it doesn't give me confidence that the employer in the Capital District went to the table knowing that is where a solution had to be reached. If they think they have a government that is going to whip into the House of Assembly with essential services legislation and bring the hammer down on health care workers, why in the world would they have to bargain at the bargaining table and try to find a solution to the problems the nurses have brought to their attention?

That's the problem here, Mr. Speaker. I think we have seen ourselves boxed into this situation now that is very difficult to get out of. To get out of it will require leadership from the Premier on this, not threats, not sitting back and just letting the clock tick. This requires leadership and involvement from the Premier. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER « » : I want to thank all the members who participated in the Adjournment debate this afternoon.

The House now stands adjourned until 9:00 a.m. tomorrow morning.

[Page 1121]

[The House rose at 4:18 p.m.]

NOTICES OF MOTION UNDER RULE 32(3)

[Page 1122]

RESOLUTION 721

By: Hon. Karen Casey « » (Education)

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

Whereas Pharmacist Allan MacKinnon began at Fulton C.G. Pharmacy in Tatamagouche, Colchester North, when he was 19 years old; and

Whereas MacKinnon and his wife Joanne started purchasing shares in the pharmacy in 1974 and owned it by the late 1990s; and

Whereas people along the North Shore were very anxious for MacKinnon, known for his humility, to receive special recognition for the generosity he has shown and the role he has played in his community;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Allan MacKinnon for receiving one of the most prestigious prizes in the pharmacy community, the Pfizer Consumer Healthcare Bowl of Hygeia, and wish him a healthy and happy retirement.

RESOLUTION NO. 722

By: Ms. Karla MacFarlane « » (Pictou West)

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

Whereas Mrs. Marie Nightingale, wife and mother, bestselling cookbook author, and food columnist, died March 15th at the age of 85; and

Whereas Mrs. Nightingale was the author of the classic cookbook Out of Old Nova Scotia Kitchens, published in 1970, which has sold more copies than any other Nova Scotia cookbook, and Mrs. Nightingale was a columnist for The Chronicle Herald for 20 years and a regular contributor to Saltscapes magazine; and

Whereas a collection of her writings, clippings, and research materials are part of the Culinary Archival Collection at the University of Guelph, and in 2010, she was honoured by the Governor General of Canada at Rideau Hall, Ottawa:

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly take a moment to honour and remember Mrs. Marie Nightingale and her contributions to the culture of Nova Scotia.

[Page 1123]

RESOLUTION 723

By: Honourable Zach Churchill (Natural Resources)

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

Whereas Kayla Fells of Yarmouth has been selected as a rising star by African Nova Scotian Affairs; and

Whereas African Nova Scotian Affairs is an important link connecting government and the African Nova Scotian community, promoting appreciation of African Nova Scotia cultural and community issues; and

Whereas Kayla Fells is an articulate, energetic, and intelligent young woman now enrolled in the Theatre and Arts Program at University of Kings College, who has been recognized on numerous occasions for her humanitarian efforts.

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House of Assembly congratulate Kayla Fells on her latest award and wish her continued success in the future.

RESOLUTION NO. 724

By: Mr. Chuck Porter « » (Hants West)

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

Whereas the Windsor-West Hants Minor Hockey Association consists of 19 teams, including five bantam, four pee-wee, and four novice teams, along with two midget and pre-novice teams, respectively; and

Whereas the Windsor-West Hants Minor Hockey Association recently hosted the 19th Annual Birthplace of Hockey Minor Tournament, with a total of 61 teams competing; and

Whereas minor hockey in any area of the province will not be successful without a strong organization of skilled individuals;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly extend our appreciation for the volunteer work ethic put forth by President Greg Kelley, Vice-President Grant Sprague, Treasurer Sari Demont, Secretary Jessie Barrett, Ice Chairperson John Shanks, Referee-in-Chief Dan MacLeod, Publicity Director Derek Parker, and Fundraising Coordinator Debbie Francis, and wish them continued success.

[Page 1124]

RESOLUTION NO. 725

By: Hon. Pat Dunn « » (Pictou Centre)

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

Whereas the Pictou County Female Atom AA Subway Selects hockey team defeated Cole Harbour to win their second consecutive Nova Scotia championship one year ago this month; and

Whereas the Atom AA Female Subway Selects will attempt to capture their third provincial championship in a row in Antigonish in the coming weeks; and

Whereas the Selects have won the 9th Annual Dairy Queen Female Hockey Tournament in Moncton this season, as well as winning their fourth straight Prince Edward Island Sweetheart Tournament in mid-February by going 5 to 0;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate the members of the Female Atom AA Selects and thank the coaching staff of Ryan Thompson, Ross MacKenzie, and David Hood for their dedication and commitment in making this young female hockey team the very best in their age category in Nova Scotia.

RESOLUTION NO. 726

By: Mr. Alfie MacLeod « » (Sydney River-Mira-Louisbourg)

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

Whereas Alison Keough from Marion Bridge made Cape Breton University history recently by winning the Kathy Shields Award as the Canadian Interuniversity Sport Rookie of the Year; and

Whereas Alison Keough is the first Capers women's basketball player to ever win a major CIS award; and

Whereas Alison, a graduate of Riverview High School, earned a spot on the AUS second all-star team and the all-rookie team;

[Page 1125]

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Alison Keough on her great achievements and wish her all the best in her future endeavours.

RESOLUTION NO. 727

By: Mr. Alfie MacLeod « » (Sydney River-Mira-Louisbourg)

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

Whereas the Cape Breton Regional Hospital Foundation was recently presented with a cheque for $1,461 in memory of James Hanley-Campbell of Louisbourg; and

Whereas James had cystic fibrosis and his friends and family wanted to give back to the pediatrics unit, where James received care; and

Whereas James' loved ones organized a floor hockey tournament in his memory, with all funds raised going to the Pediatrics TLC Fund, which provides financial assistance to families for medical-related expenses;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate the family and friends of the late James Hanley-Campbell of Louisbourg, and thank them for their consideration of others in need of medical care.

RESOLUTION NO. 728

By: Mr. Tim Houston « » (Pictou East)

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

Whereas Clyde Macdonald and Philip MacKenzie are firm believers that a picture is worth a thousand words, and they are on a quest to share historical pictures in various local businesses; and

Whereas the Pictou County Roots Society funded this initiative that put 20 photos on display in local businesses; and

Whereas this venture adds beauty, education, history, pride, and a sense of community to all who view the pictures;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Clyde Macdonald and Philip MacKenzie for their efforts to make local history more accessible to residents of Pictou County

[Page 1126]

RESOLUTION NO. 729

By: Hon. Andrew Younger « » (Energy)

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

Whereas Scotiabank, a member of the Main Street Business Improvement Association, participated in over 25 fundraising initiatives last year in support of community organizations; and

Whereas the Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia aspires to provide hope, opportunity, and community to those who need it the most (over 200,000 Nova Scotians living with mental illness): and

Whereas the fundraising team at Scotiabank presented a cheque for $10,000 to the Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House of Assembly join me in thanking the fundraising team at Scotiabank, Main Street Branch, for their generosity and commitment to the community, and wish them continued success in the future.

RESOLUTION NO. 730

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Connor Conklin of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

Whereas Connor and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Connor and his team won the regional banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Connor Conklin and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 731

[Page 1127]

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Liam Semple of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

Whereas Liam and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Liam and his team won the regional banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Liam Semple and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 732

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Max Hartling of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

Whereas Max and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Max and his team won the regional banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Max Hartling and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 733

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Liam Young of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

[Page 1128]

Whereas Liam and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Liam and his team won the regional banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Liam Young and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 734

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Jacob Young of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

Whereas Jacob and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Jacob and his team won the regional banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Jacob Young and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 735

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Zack Gladwin of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

Whereas Zack and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Zack and his team won the regional banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to5;

[Page 1129]

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Zack Gladwin and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 736

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Ryan O'Toole of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

Whereas Ryan and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Ryan and his team won the regional banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Ryan O'Toole and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 737

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Marshall Rock of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

Whereas Marshall and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Marshall and his team won the Regional Banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly congratulate Marshall Rock and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 738

[Page 1130]

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Austin Lee of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

Whereas Austin and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Austin and his team won the Regional Banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly congratulate Austin Lee and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 739

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Ryan Williamson of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

Whereas Ryan and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Ryan and his team won the Regional Banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly congratulate Ryan Williamson and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 740

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Alex Wilson of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

[Page 1131]

Whereas Alex and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Alex and his team won the Regional Banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly congratulate Alex Wilson and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 741

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Morgan MacLean of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

Whereas Morgan and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Morgan and his team won the Regional Banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly congratulate Morgan MacLean and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 742

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Morgan Kini of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

Whereas Morgan and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Morgan and his team won the Regional Banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

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Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly congratulate Morgan Kini and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 743

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Carter Lee of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

Whereas Carter and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Carter and his team won the regional banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Carter Lee and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 744

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Noah Wilkie of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

Whereas Noah and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Noah and his team won the regional banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Noah Wilkie and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 745

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By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Matt Sabean of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

Whereas Matt and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Matt and his team won the regional banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Matt Sabean and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 746

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Evan O'Toole of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

Whereas Evan and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Evan and his team won the regional banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Evan O'Toole and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 747

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Brennan Waterman of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

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Whereas Brennan and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Brennan and his team won the regional banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Brennan Waterman and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.

RESOLUTION NO. 748

By: Hon. Mark Furey « » (Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations)

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

Whereas Marc Sabean of Bridgewater was a member of the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for the 2013-14 season; and

Whereas Marc and his team finished their season undefeated in league play; and

Whereas Marc and his team won the regional banner on March 4, 2014, defeating Northeast Kings Education Centre in the finals with a score of 6 to 5;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate Marc Sabean and the Bridgewater Junior High hockey team for their successful hockey season.