The Nova Scotia Legislature

The House resumed on:
September 21, 2017.

HANSARD 03/04-66

DEBATES AND PROCEEDINGS

Speaker: Honourable Murray Scott

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

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

Annual subscriptions available from the Office of the Speaker.

First Session

MONDAY, OCTOBER 18, 2004

TABLE OF CONTENTS PAGE
INTRODUCTION OF VISITORS 5697
PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS:
TPW - Lunenburg Co.: Mill Lake Rd. - Pave, Mr. J. Chataway 5698
PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES:
Law Amendments Committee, Hon. M. Baker 5698
TABLING REPORTS, REGULATIONS AND OTHER PAPERS:
Anl. Rept. of the Nova Scotia Health Research Foundation,
Hon. Rodney MacDonald 5699
Capital Health Report to the Community 2003-2004,
Hon. Rodney MacDonald 5699
Anl. Rept. of the Cape Breton District Health Authority,
Hon. Rodney MacDonald 5699
Anl. Rept. of the South Shore Health, Hon. Rodney MacDonald 5699
Anl. Rept. of the Pictou County Health Authority,
Hon. Rodney MacDonald 5699
Anl. Rept. of the Annapolis Valley Health, Hon. Rodney MacDonald 5699
Second Quarter 2004 for the Workers' Compensation Board,
Hon. K. Morash 5700
PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES:
Law Amendments Committee, Hon. M. Baker 5700
STATEMENTS BY MINISTERS:
Elliott, Dr. Shirley: Death of - Tribute, Hon. R. Russell 5701
GOVERNMENT NOTICES OF MOTION:
Res. 2923, Legislature Support Staff: Efforts - Commend,
Hon. R. Russell 5703
Vote - Affirmative 5703
Res. 2924, Sm. Bus. Operators: Commitment - Recognize, Hon. E. Fage 5703
Vote - Affirmative 5704
Res. 2925, Com. Serv. - Foster Families: Gratitude - Extend,
Hon. D. Morse 5704
Vote - Affirmative 5705
Res. 2926, Olympics/Paralympics: Participants - Congrats.,
Hon. Rodney MacDonald 5705
Vote - Affirmative 5706
Res. 2927, Mun. Election (2004): Candidates - Congrats.,
Hon. B. Barnet 5706
Vote - Affirmative 5706
Res. 2928, Glube, Chief Justice Constance - Contribution: Gratitude -
Express, Hon. M. Baker 5707
Vote - Affirmative 5707
Res. 2929, Renovation Mo. (10/04): Associated Partners - Recognize,
Hon. C. Clarke 5707
Vote - Affirmative 5708
Res. 2930, Tackling Bullying Prog.: Supporters - Thank, Hon. J. Muir 5708
Vote - Affirmative 5709
Res. 2931, Surette, Stan - Acadians/Francophones: Service - Thank,
Hon. C. d'Entremont 5709
Vote - Affirmative 5710
Res. 2932, Supreme Court (N.S.): Anniv. (250th) - Congrats.,
Hon. M. Baker 5710
Vote - Affirmative 5711
Res. 2933, Paris, Doreen/Hughes, Judy/MacPherson, Flo:
Tearmann House Bd. of Dir. - Hon. Life Membership,
Hon. C. Bolivar-Getson 5711
Vote - Affirmative 5711
Res. 2934, TD Bank Fin. Group: SMU Contribution - Acknowledge,
Hon. J. Muir 5712
Vote - Affirmative 5712
NOTICES OF MOTION:
Res. 2935, Cdn. Cancer Soc./Cancer Care N.S.-Pap Tests: Promotion -
Salute, Ms. Maureen MacDonald 5712
Vote - Affirmative 5713
Res. 2936, Gaudet, Wayne - Legislature: Contributions - Acknowledge,
Mr. Michel Samson 5713
Vote - Affirmative 5714
Res. 2937, Clare MLA (W. Gaudet): Interim Liberal Leader - Thank,
Hon. R. Russell 5714
Vote - Affirmative 5715
Res. 2938, Elliott, Shirley: Death of - Tribute, Mr. H. Epstein 5715
Vote - Affirmative 5716
Res. 2939, Irving, J.D./Employees: Safety Achievements - Congrats.,
Mr. H. Theriault 5716
Vote - Affirmative 5717
Res. 2940, Law Enforcement Mem. March: Participants - Commend,
Mr. W. Langille 5717
Vote - Affirmative 5717
Res. 2941, Garden, Father John/Fam.: Ordination - Congrats.,
Mr. J. MacDonell 5718
Vote - Affirmative 5718
Res. 2942, Person's Day (10/18/04): Anniv. (75th) - Congrats.,
Ms. D. Whalen 5719
Vote - Affirmative 5719
Res. 2943, Patterson, Heather/Lightburn, Ron: Book Release -
Congrats., Mr. M. Parent 5719
Vote - Affirmative 5720
Res. 2944, TCH: Hist. Sites - Identification/Signage, Ms. M. Raymond 5720
Vote - Affirmative ^Re. 2945, Cottars: Success - Acknowledge/Congrats., Mr. R. MacKinnon ~ 5721 5721
Vote - Affirmative 5722
Res. 2946, Hip Hip Hooray Auction - Orthopaedic Fundraising:
Organizers - Congrats., Mr. J. DeWolfe 5722
Vote - Affirmative 5722
Res. 2947, Pictou Town - Mayor/Councillors: Election - Congrats.,
Mr. C. Parker 5723
Vote - Affirmative 5723
Res. 2948, Clare Shopper/Lobster Bay Shopper: Anniv. (20th) -
Congrats., Mr. W. Gaudet 5723
Vote - Affirmative 5724
Res. 2949, Archibald Mem. Chap. IODE: Anniv. (50th) - Congrats.,
Hon. C. Clarke 5724
Vote - Affirmative 5725
Res. 2950, East. Shore Bus. Rally: Organizers - Congrats.,
Mr. D. Dexter 5725
Vote - Affirmative 5725
Res. 2951, Carter, Leon: N.S. Amateur Golf Championship - Congrats.,
Mr. Michel Samson 5726
Vote - Affirmative 5726
Res. 2952, Miller, Jana: Musical Accomplishments - Congrats.,
Hon. J. Muir 5726
Vote - Affirmative 5727
Res. 2953, Com. Serv. - Foster Families: Work - Salute, Ms. M. More 5727
Res. 2954, TPW - Res. No. 4082: Response - Congrats.,
Mr. R. MacKinnon 5728
Vote - Affirmative 5728
Res. 2955, Mun. Election 2004: Candidates/Workers/Vols. -
Congrats., Mr. J. Pye 5729
Vote - Affirmative 5729
Res. 2956, RCL - Calais Br. 162: Remembrance Day -
Participants Congrats., Mr. David Wilson (Sackville-Cobequid) 5729
Vote - Affirmative 5730
Res. 2957, Autism Mo. (10/04) - Sydney Kickoff: Participants -
Congrats., Mr. G. Gosse 5730
Vote - Affirmative 5731
Res. 2958, Citizenship Wk. (10/18-10/24/04): New Canadians -
Welcome, Ms. D. Whalen 5731
Vote - Affirmative 5732
Res. 2959, Toulany, Leo/Fam.: Work - Thank, Mr. W. Estabrooks 5732
Vote - Affirmative 5732
Res. 2960, Fletcher, Dr. Mark - Fam. Focus Med. Clinic (Hfx.):
Opening - Congrats., Mr. David Wilson (Sackville-Cobequid) 5732
Vote - Affirmative 5733
Res. 2961, UN Int'l. Day for Eradication of Poverty (10/17/04):
UN Target - Adopt, Ms. M. More 5733
Res. 2962, Lavers, Robert - Ryl. Winter Fair: Success - Wish,
Mr. C. Parker 5734
Vote - Affirmative 5735
Res. 2963, Lecky, Winnifred Costley: Death of - Tribute,
Ms. M. Raymond 5735
Vote - Affirmative 5735
Res. 2964, Haddad, Simon & Kay: Com. Commitment (50 yrs.) -
Congrats., Mr. D. Dexter 5735
Vote - Affirmative 5736
GOVERNMENT BUSINESS:
PRIVATE AND LOCAL BILLS FOR SECOND READING:
No. 143, The Ladies Golf Association of Nova Scotia Act 5736
HOUSE RESOLVED INTO CWH ON BILLS AT 6:10 P.M. 5737
HOUSE RECONVENED AT 6:13 P.M. 5737
CWH REPORTS 5738
PUBLIC BILLS FOR THIRD READING:
No. 119, Agriculture Administration Amendment (2004) Act 5739
Hon. C. d'Entremont 5739
Mr. J. MacDonell 5739
Mr. S. McNeil 5741
Hon. C. d'Entremont 5744
Vote - Affirmative 5744
No. 87, Electricity Act 5744
Hon. R. Russell 5744
Mr. F. Corbett 5745
Mr. Michael Samson 5746
Mr. H. Epstein 5748
Mr. R. MacKinnon 5753
Mr. J. MacDonell 5755
Hon. C. Clarke 5756
Vote - Affirmative 5757
No. 131, Police Act 5757
Hon. M. Baker 5758
Mr. R. MacKinnon 5758
Hon. M. Baker 5759
Vote - Affirmative 5759
PRIVATE AND LOCAL BILLS FOR THIRD READING:
No. 143, The Ladies Golf Association of Nova Scotia Act 5760
PRIVATE MEMBERS' PUBLIC BILLS FOR THIRD READING:
No. 125, Mandatory Testing and Disclosure Act 5760
Mr. W. Langille 5760
Mr. David Wilson (Sackville-Cobequid) 5761
Mr. W. Langille 5763
Vote - Affirmative 5763
PUBLIC BILLS FOR THIRD READING:
No. 100, Protection for Persons in Care Act 5763
Ms. Maureen MacDonald 5763
Mr. David Wilson (Glace Bay) 5764
Ms. Maureen MacDonald 5764
Vote - Affirmative 5764
No. 130, Legal Profession Act 5764
Hon. M. Baker 5765
Mr. K. Deveaux 5765
Mr. Michel Samson 5765
Hon. M. Baker 5767
Vote - Affirmative 5767
No. 138, Trade Union Act 5767
Mr. W. Langille 5767
Mr. D. Dexter 5769
Mr. Manning MacDonald 5772
Mr. R. MacKinnon 5774
Mr. W. Langille 5775
Vote - Affirmative 5777
ARRIVAL OF THE LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR 5777
BILLS GIVEN ROYAL ASSENT:
Nos. 71, 82, 84 and 85 5777
Nos. 87, 90, 92,93, 95, 96, 98, 99, 101, 102, and 103 5778
Nos. 107, 108, 110, 111, 115, 116, 119, 121, 125, 127 and 130 5778
Nos. 131, 132, 135, 138 and 143 5779
ADJOURNMENT, House rose to meet again at the call of the Speaker 5780
NOTICES OF MOTION UNDER RULE 32(3):
Res. 2965, West. Valley Dev. Auth. - Staff/Bd. Dir.: Appreciation -
Extend, Hon. E. Fage 5781
Res. 2966, Yar. - Cons. Mem. HS: All Saints Prog. - Congrats.,
Hon. R. Hurlburt 5781
Res. 2967, Leblanc, Aaron: Creativity - Acknowledge, Hon. R Hurlburt 5782
Res. 2968, McCoul, Danny & Joanne: Com. Contributions -
Congrats., Mr. J. Chataway 5782
Res. 2969, Sports: Thorburn Ladies Fast-Pitch Team - Congrats.,
Mr. J. DeWolfe 5783
Res. 2970, Duggan, Jenna/Feit, Lindsay: Fundraising - Congrats.,
Mr. J. DeWolfe 5783
Res. 2971, d'Entremont, Pierrette: Com. Contribution - Congrats.,
Hon. C. d'Entremont 5784
Res. 2972, Hill, Matthew - Can. Games Wrestling Team: Selection -
Congrats., Mr. Michel Samson 5785
Res. 2973, Richmond Co.: Councillors (Present/Former) - Congrats.,
Mr. Michel Samson 5785
Res. 2974, Sampson, Steve - Richmond Co. Coun.: Election -
Congrats., Mr. Michel Samson 5786
Res. 2975, Martel, Alvin - Richmond Co. Coun.: Election - Congrats.,
Mr. Michel Samson 5786
Res. 2976, Boudreau, John - Richmond Co. Coun.: Election -
Congrats., Mr. Michel Samson 5787
Res. 2977, St. Mary's Church/Museum: Heritage - Conservation,
Mr. W. Gaudet 5787
Res. 2978, Fralic, George: Cross-Canada Bicycle Journey - Recognize,
Hon. K. Morash 5788
Res. 2979, Whynot, Daniel: Bowater Scholarship (2004) - Congrats.,
Hon. K. Morash 5788
Res. 2980, Bolivar, Sarah: Bowater Scholarship (2004) - Congrats.,
Hon. K. Morash 5789
Res. 2981, Meisner, Chelsea: Bowater Scholarship (2004) - Congrats.,
Hon. K. Morash 5789
Res. 2982, Muise, Graham: Math. Achievements - Congrats.,
Hon. K. Morash 5790
Res. 2983, Hosp. Hustle (Queens Co.) - Comm.: Efforts - Recognize,
Hon. K. Morash 5790
Res. 2984, S. Shore Big Brothers/Big Sisters: Efforts - Recognize,
Hon. K. Morash 5791
Res. 2985, Bowater Mersey: Anniv. (75th) - Congrats., Hon. K. Morash 5791
Res. 2986, C.B. Search & Rescue Assoc.: Anniv. (35th) - Congrats.,
Hon. C. Clarke 5792
Res. 2987, S. Col. Acad. Wolves: Soccer Championship - Congrats.,
Mr. B. Taylor 5792
Res. 2988, Person's Day: Anniv. (75th) - Congrats.,
Hon. C. Bolivar-Getson 5793
Res. 2989, Holt Fam. (Hatchet Lake): Com. Commitment -
Congrats., Mr. W. Estabrooks 5793
Res. 2990, RCL - McDonald Br. 156: Com. Commitment - Thank,
Mr. W. Estabrooks 5794
Res. 2991, RCL - Atl. Br. 153: Com. Commitment - Thank,
Mr. W. Estabrooks 5794
Res. 2992, Germaine, Ted: ECMA - Congrats., Mr. W. Dooks 5795
Res. 2993, Vol. Planning - Off-Hwy. Vehicles Task Force: Efforts -
Recognize, Hon. M. Baker 5795
Res. 2994, Izzard, Norm: UNSM Award - Congrats., Mr. R. Chisholm 5796
Res. 2995, Dauphinee, Cliff: Birthday (90th) - Congrats.,
Mr. J. Chataway 5796
Res. 2996, McAloney, Geoff & Evlynn/Cumb. Health Auth.:Twins -
Congrats., Hon. E. Fage 5797
Res. 2997, Econ. Developers Assoc. Can. (2004) Conf.: Attendees -
Commend, Hon. E. Fage 5797
Res. 2998, Elliott, Dr. Shirley: Death of - Tribute, Hon. D. Morse 5798
Res. 2999, Strait Highlands RDA: Dev. - Commend,
Hon. Rodney MacDonald 5798
Res. 3000, Cdn. Sprint Canoe/Kayak Championships (2004):
Participants - Congrats., Hon. Rodney MacDonald 5799
Res. 3001, Mansour's Store: Anniv. (80th) - Congrats., Hon. E. Fage 5799
Res. 3002, African Methodist Episcopal Church (Amherst):
Wilson, Rev. Larry & Marsha - Welcome, Hon. E. Fage 5800
Res. 3003, Helm, Barry: Harris Medal - Congrats., Hon. E. Fage 5800
Res. 3004, Pugwash Cemetery - Vol. Group: Work - Applaud,
Hon. E. Fage 5800
Res. 3005, Amherst Rotary Club - Field Purchase: Vision - Applaud,
Hon. E. Fage 5801
Res. 3006, Econ. Dev. - Exporting Companies: Regards - Extend,
Hon. E. Fage 5801
Res. 3007, N.S. Co-Operative Coun./RDA - Partnerships: Value -
Recognize, Hon. E. Fage 5802
Res. 3008, Tender Opportunities Notification Service - Initiative:
Value - Recognize, Hon. E. Fage 5802
Res. 3009, Nat'l. Credit Union Day - Celebrate, Hon. E. Fage 5803
Res. 3010, N.S. Co-operatives: Success - Congrats., Hon. E. Fage 5804
Res. 3011, Congrés Mondial Acadien - Cumb. Co.: Plaque Recipients -
Congrats., Hon. E. Fage 5804
Res. 3012, Amherst Fire Fit Team: Members - Congrats., Hon. E. Fage 5805
Res. 3013, All Saints Hosp. Helipad - Const.: Supporters - Applaud,
The Speaker 5805
Res. 3014, Doucette, Eugene - Mun. Argyle: Service - Thank,
Hon. C. d'Entremont 5806
Res. 3015, Com. Serv. - Foster Parents: Gratitude - Extend,
Hon. D. Morse 5806
Res. 3016, White, Bill: Cahoon Award - Congrats., Hon. K. Morash 5807
Res. 3017, Frizzell, Bert - Shaw Group: Pres./CEO - Appt. Congrats.,
Ms. D. Whalen 5807
Res. 3018, Sports - Yarmouth Motor Mart Mariners: Apparel Ranking -
Applaud, Hon. R. Hurlburt 5808
Res. 3019, Northside Youth Health Ctr.: Open House - Congrats.,
Hon. C. Clarke 5808
Res. 3020, Conrad, Barbara - Clark's Hbr. Town Council:
Service (31 yrs.) - Congrats., Mr. C. O'Donnell 5809
Res. 3021, Henderson, John - Springhill: Gov't. Service (17 yrs.) -
Congrats., The Speaker 5809
Res. 3022, Mitchell, Ralph - Springhill: Gov't. Service (13 yrs.) -
Congrats., The Speaker 5810
Res. 3023, Steliga, Kristopher: Achievements - Congrats., The Speaker 5810
Res. 3024, Steeves, CWO Erica: Argonaut Army Cadet
Summer Training Ctr. - Appt., The Speaker 5811
Res. 3025, Springhill HS Students - Humphrey Model UN:
Participation - Congrats., The Speaker 5812
Res. 3026, Springhill Library Reading Club: Prog. - Congrats.,
The Speaker 5812
Res. 3027, White, Frank Joseph: Lt. Gov.'s Award - Congrats.,
The Speaker 5813
Res. 3028, Strathearn, Charlotte & Larry/Foodland: Rotary Award -
Congrats., The Speaker 5813
Res. 3029, Purcell, Brittani - Cumb. Co. Ex.: First Princess - Congrats.,
The Speaker 5814
Res. 3030, Quigley, Dave: Golf Achievements - Congrats., The Speaker 5814
Res. 3031, Rector, Allison: Musical Achievements - Congrats.,
The Speaker 5815
Res. 3032, Reid, Gina: Soccer N.S. U-13 Girls Team - Congrats.,
The Speaker 5815
Res. 3033, River Hebert Elem. Sch. - Terry Fox Fdn.: Fundraising -
Congrats., The Speaker 5816
Res. 3034, Sports - River Hebert Lady Raiders: Slo-Pitch Medal -
Congrats., The Speaker 5816
Res. 3035, Rushton, Sherri: Freemasons' Bursary - Congrats.,
The Speaker 5817
Res. 3036, Scotiabank Oxford - Oxford Elem. Sch. Basketball Prog.:
Donation - Congrats., The Speaker 5817
Res. 3037, Bray, Doug & Ellen: Fodor's Designation - Congrats.,
Mr. M. Parent 5818
Res. 3038, Ferguson, John - Nat'l. Historica Fair: Display - Congrats.,
Mr. M. Parent 5818
Res. 3039, Carty, Brad: Strongman Comp. - Congrats., Mr. M. Parent 5819
Res. 3040, McRae, Dr. Kenneth - Kentville Research Ctr.:
Research/Dedication - Congrats., Mr. M. Parent 5819
Res. 3041, States, Charlotte: Kingstec Award - Congrats., Mr. M. Parent 5820
Res. 3042, Dunfield, Gary/Steeves, Andrew/Gaspereau Press -
Wayzgoose Weekend (5th Anl.): Success - Wish, Mr. M. Parent 5820
Res. 3043, Toole, Stephanie - Joints in Motion Marathon: Success -
Wish, Mr. M. Parent 5821
Res. 3044, Kentville Agric. Ctr. - Patterson Bldg.: Naming - Congrats.,
Mr. M. Parent 5821
NOTICE OF QUESTIONS FOR WRITTEN ANSWERS:
No. 2, Health - Arthritis Medication: Formulary - Coverage,
Ms. Maureen MacDonald 5822
No. 3, Hum. Res. - PSC: Post-Sec. Grads - Employment Opportunities,
Mr. G. Gosse 5822
No. 4, Health: Hep C - Compensation, Mr. J. MacDonell 5823
No. 5, Com. Serv.: ESIA Calculation - Details, Ms. M. More 5823
No. 6, Com. Serv.: Shannon Pk. Housing Stock - Update, Mr. J. Pye 5824
No. 7, Educ. - African Nova Scotian Teachers: Hiring - Data,
Mr. W. Estabrooks 5824
No. 8, Health - Suicide Prevention Strategy: Introduction - Timeframe,
Ms. Maureen MacDonald 5825
No. 9, Agric. & Fish.: NSFA - Funding, Mr. J. MacDonell 5826
No. 10, TPW - Hants East: Operations Sheds/Crews -
Reduction Explain, Mr. J. MacDonell 5826
No. 11, TPW - Pictou Hbr.: Bridge - Consider, Mr. C. Parker 5827
No. 12, Health - Pictou Causeway: Pictou Environ. Protection Proj. -
Min. Awareness, Mr. C. Parker 5827
No. 13, Environ. & Lbr.: Pictou Causeway - Area Visit, Mr. C. Parker 5828

[Page 5697]

HALIFAX, MONDAY, OCTOBER 18, 2004

Fifty-ninth General Assembly

First Session

5:00 P.M.

SPEAKER

Hon. Murray Scott

DEPUTY SPEAKERS

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

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. Before we begin the daily routine, the honourable member for Halifax Clayton Park on an introduction.

MS. DIANA WHALEN: Mr. Speaker, I wanted to draw the attention of the members of the House to the west gallery where we are joined by a class from St. Mary's University. They are students studying criminology, and they are with their teacher Russell Prime who is a native of Digby, I understand. So perhaps you would rise and receive the warm welcome of the House. (Applause)

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

We will begin the daily routine.

PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Chester-St. Margaret's.

5697

[Page 5698]

MR. JOHN CHATAWAY: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition from the residents of Mill Lake Road in Lunenburg County. They started this petition on May 28th of this year, and it has just come to my office. Basically, part of the road is gravel, most of it is asphalt, some of it is gravel. They want the gravel part paved.

I would also give to the Department of Transportation and Public Works a petition. Many people signed this petition, in 1993 they came up with the same conclusion, they have less than a mile to be paved. I would just like to present both these petitions to the Department of Transportation and Public Works. (Interruptions)

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. The honourable member has signed the petition, I assume?

MR. CHATAWAY: I did.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

The honourable member for Halifax Atlantic on an introduction.

MS. MICHELLE RAYMOND: Mr. Speaker, I would like to draw the attention of the House as well to the west gallery where Robert Young and his daughter, Miranda, are sitting. Robert, as a good father, has decided to introduce his daughter early to the processes of the Legislature. So if this House could give a warm welcome to Robert and his daughter, Miranda, that would be wonderful. (Applause)

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

PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Justice.

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

Bill No. 110 - Protection for Persons in Care Act.

Bill No. 138 - Trade Union Act.

Bill No. 130 - Legal Profession Act.

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

[Page 5699]

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

The honourable Government House Leader.

[5:15 p.m.]

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, with the unanimous consent of the House, could we have those bills included on today's order paper?

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

TABLING REPORTS, REGULATIONS AND OTHER PAPERS

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

HON. RODNEY MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, with your indulgence I have a number to table and I will list them off. As well, before the first one, if I might introduce Krista Connell, who is in the gallery with us today. She is the Executive Director of the Nova Scotia Health Research Foundation and the foundation's first Chief Executive Officer. She has led the foundation from its inception. We certainly welcome her here today and ask her to rise to receive the warm welcome of the House. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: We welcome our guest in the gallery today and hope she enjoys the proceedings. Thank you.

The honourable Minister of Tourism, Culture and Heritage.

HON. RODNEY MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, as Minister of Health Promotion I beg leave to table a number of reports: the Nova Scotia Health Research Foundation Annual Report entitled Building Capacity Now and in the Future; I also beg leave to table Capital Health Report to the Community 2003-2004; Cape Breton District Health Authority Annual Report 2003-2004, entitled On the Road to . . . Better Health; the South Shore Health Annual Report entitled Reflections 2003-2004 - Report to the Community; the Pictou County Health Authority 2004 Annual Report; and the Annapolis Valley Health 2003-2004 Annual Report.

MR. SPEAKER: The reports are tabled.

The honourable Minister of Environment and Labour.

[Page 5700]

HON. KERRY MORASH: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a report entitled Second Quarter 2004 for the Workers' Compensation Board.

MR. SPEAKER: The report is tabled.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, could we revert back to the order of business, Presenting Reports of Committees? There was a bill that was not reported.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Justice.

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

Bill No. 117 - Emergency Health Services Act.

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

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

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I request that this bill also be added to today's order paper.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

[Page 5701]

STATEMENTS BY MINISTERS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Deputy Premier.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, on Friday, Nova Scotians were saddened to learn of the passing of a truly wonderful Nova Scotian, Dr. Shirley Burnham Elliott, author, scholar, community volunteer and member of the Order of Nova Scotia. She was a valued friend to many, including all who served in this House. As Legislative Librarian for almost 30 years, it could be said that Dr. Elliott spent more time here at Province House than any other Nova Scotian. It could also be said that she spent her time well.

Dr. Elliott was instrumental in preserving Nova Scotia's history and heritage, not just by ensuring that records, books and archives in our Legislative Library were carefully maintained, but by adding to them through her own research and numerous historical accounts of life and politics in Nova Scotia. Dr. Elliott was also a visionary, preserving the unique richness and feel of our centuries old library, while at the same time transforming it into a modern and efficient gold mine of information for students, teachers, politicians, historians and her fellow librarians.

Her contribution to this House, to her province and to her community will surely live on for years to come, as Nova Scotians continue to rely on her lifelong love of history as a means of learning about our past. Mr. Speaker, I would ask that we stand for a moment of silence.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. Just before we do that, I would ask the honourable Leader of the Official Opposition to respond, please.

The honourable Leader of the Official Opposition.

MR. DARRELL DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, certainly, I would like, indeed, to associate ourselves with the words of the honourable Government House Leader. I, of course, had the opportunity to meet Dr. Elliott on the event of her induction into the Order of Nova Scotia. I believe at that time - was she in the first group or in the second group, in the first group, I think. (Interruption) Second group. She certainly was a resource for the entire province. One of the little stories I remember is the fact that although we refer to this as the 59th General Assembly of the House, in fact it's the 58th. There was a mistake made at some point in time in the past, and she was the person who discovered the fact that there was an error, but it was done too late in order to actually correct it. So, here we sit in the 59th Assembly rather than the 58th.

[Page 5702]

It was that kind of research and her dedication to that kind of research, her love of her province, her dedication to its history that we admired so much. So it certainly was with a great deal of sadness that we on these benches heard of her passing. She will be greatly missed.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the Liberal Party.

MR. WAYNE GAUDET: Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the Liberal caucus, I would like to add my voice to the minister's sincere tribute to our former legislative librarian, Shirley Elliott. Ms. Elliott was, for close to three decades, a true and loyal servant of this House and, without reservation, made an enormous contribution to the work of the members of all Parties. Her respect for the legislative process and her love of this place is evidenced in the many publications that she, herself, produced.

The works of Shirley B. Elliott are a great resource for students and teachers alike, as well as for new members of this House, and will be for many years to come. Through her efforts, our Legislative Library is among the best in the country and its research facilities provide invaluable service to all members of this House and the public at large. Our current library staff are justifiably proud of her legacy and are living up to her expectations of them, but Shirley Elliott's work was not reserved for this House. She had an enormous sense of place and her love of this province inspired her to amass a vast collection of historical documents, a collection that is second to none, and it's widely used by academics and historical researchers.

As proud as we are of her accomplishments, Shirley Elliott was so much more than our Legislative Librarian. Born and raised in Wolfville, Nova Scotia, she was a proud graduate of Acadia University and although she spent many of her adult years here in Halifax, she never lost sight of who she was and where she came from and when she retired, she returned to her favourite place in the world - Wolfville. To say that Shirley will be missed is, I believe, an understatement. Those who knew her, loved her without question. She was an oral historian and actively involved in her community her entire life. With her passing, Nova Scotians have lost a vast reservoir of knowledge and a dear friend. On behalf of our caucus, I would like to extend our sincere condolences to her family and friends - Shirley Elliott will be missed.

MR. SPEAKER: I would ask all members to rise for a moment of silence, please.

[One minute of silence was observed.]

MR. SPEAKER: Thank you, please be seated.

[Page 5703]

GOVERNMENT NOTICES OF MOTION

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Deputy Premier.

RESOLUTION NO. 2923

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

Whereas, once again, we are reaching the end of yet another session, something we could not have done without the able assistance of the staff who support us all in this Chamber; and

Whereas this of course includes Mike and Peter, the staff of our Legislative Library, our Commissionaires, Pages and messengers; and

Whereas this also includes the able Legislative Counsel office staff and the Committees Office staff, our Hansard and the Legislative Television personnel, our catering staff and of course our Sergeant-at-Arms as well as those who keep this beautiful historic House clean and orderly;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this Legislature commend and applaud the efforts of these talented and efficient individuals - efforts for which we are always grateful.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried. (Applause)

The honourable Minister of Economic Development.

RESOLUTION NO. 2924

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

[Page 5704]

Whereas October 17th to 23rd is National Small Business and National Co-operatives Week; and

Whereas regional development authorities, Chambers of Commerce, co-operatives and other private and public organizations that assist small business are staging many information events across the province during the week to highlight programs and services available to our entrepreneurs; and

Whereas the province provides continuous support to the work of many of these organizations and their projects that support our entrepreneurs;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House recognize the commitment and the expertise of thousands of hard-working Nova Scotians who operate the small- to medium- sized enterprises that form the backbone of Nova Scotia's economy.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Community Services.

RESOLUTION NO. 2925

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

Whereas the week of October 17th to 23rd is Foster Family Appreciation Week in Nova Scotia and there are approximately 700 loving, dedicated and caring foster parents across the province; and

Whereas a copy of a poem called World of Wonders, written by a young person in care, has been distributed to all members of the Nova Scotia Legislature and is a heart-felt account of the emotions any child might feel when coming into care and a great testimony to the effect foster families have on the lives of children and youth in care; and

[Page 5705]

Whereas 10 foster families: Irene Banfield, Domitilia and Joe Beaton, Emilda and Lionel Comeau, Gail and Ronald Croft, Gwen and Alex Gouthro, Betty and David Hill, Sharon and Ron King, Helen and Maurice Lake, and Roger and Suzanne Sevigny are being recognized this week for dedicating 25 years to fostering children and youth;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House extend their gratitude to Nova Scotia's foster families for opening their hearts and homes to children in need.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Health Promotion.

RESOLUTION NO. 2926

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

Whereas this year 15 Nova Scotia athletes and coaches travelled to Athens, Greece for the Summer Olympics and Paralympics, which celebrates excellence in sport around the globe; and

Whereas the commitment and dedication shown by these individuals sets an example for our young people and all Nova Scotians; and

Whereas this year's team included such dedicated Nova Scotians as sprint canoeist Steve Giles, who competed in his 4th and final Olympics, retiring this Fall with a grand total of 15 years on the national team, 10 international medals and 1 Olympic medal;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate those dedicated athletes and coaches, as well as their families, for their commitment to sport and for all their success at this year's Olympics and Paralympics in Athens.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 5706]

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. 2927

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

Whereas on Saturday, October 16th, Nova Scotians went to the polls in unprecedented numbers, casting ballots during the municipal elections; and

Whereas the incoming councils have great challenges ahead of them, their abilities will no doubt allow them to overcome these challenges with much success; and

Whereas many hundreds of workers were involved in the smooth running of the municipal elections;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House join me in congratulating the successful candidates and wish all those who will not be returning much success in their future endeavours and send our thanks to those who worked during the municipal elections to make it a success.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

[Page 5707]

The honourable Minister of Justice.

[5:30 p.m.]

RESOLUTION NO. 2928

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

Whereas the Honourable Chief Justice Constance Glube has announce her intention to retire, effective December 31st this year; and

Whereas Chief Justice Glube has served this province with great distinction during her outstanding career as a lawyer and member of the judiciary; and

Whereas Chief Justice Glube has been a leader in the reorganization and restructuring of our court system, and has helped to make our system of justice better understood;

Therefore be it resolved that the House express our sincere gratitude for her leadership and untiring contribution not only in the field of justice, but among many professional and volunteer organizations.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Energy. (Applause)

RESOLUTION NO. 2929

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

Whereas the Nova Scotia Home Builders' Association has chosen October as Renovation Month; and

[Page 5708]

Whereas home renovations provide an opportune time for homeowners to plan for and make upgrades to their homes that will result in improved energy efficiency savings to the homeowner as well as to the benefit of the environment; and

Whereas staff from the Department of Energy are assisting to host workshops across the province to help Nova Scotians learn more about energy efficiency and home renovation;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House recognize the Nova Scotia Home Builders' Association, staff from the Department of Energy and all those associated partners involved in Renovation Month for their commitment to energy efficiency.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Education.

RESOLUTION NO. 2930

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

Whereas last Wednesday, October 13th, I read a resolution about Tackling Bullying, an anti-bullying program offered to schools and students in the Halifax Regional Municipality; and

Whereas I would like to highlight that this program was originally developed by the RCMP, Halifax detachment, Halifax Regional Police and the Saint Mary's University Huskies, and is delivered in partnership with the Huskies and the Halifax Regional School Board; and

Whereas Wilson Fuels offers financial support for the program to cover the production of posters for students and travel costs for the Huskies;

[Page 5709]

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House thank the RCMP, Halifax Regional Police, Saint Mary's Huskies, Halifax Regional School Board and Wilson Fuels for making this program available to high school students throughout HRM.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Acadian Affairs.

RESOLUTION NO. 2931

HON. CHRISTOPHER D'ENTREMONT: M. le président, à une date ultérieure, j'ai l'intention de proposer l'adoption de la résolution suivante:

Attendu la 36e réunion annuelle de la Fédération acadienne de la Nouvelle-Écosse a eu lieu au Park Place Ramada, à Dartmouth, en fin de semaine; et

Attendu monsieur Stan Surette, a terminé son mandat en tant que président de la FANE, ayant servi en cette capacité pour les quatre dernières années; et

Attendu monsieur Surette a été depuis longtemps un champion des communautés acadienne et francophone de la Nouvelle-Écosse;

Qu'il soit résolu que cette Chambre remercie monsieur Stan Surette pour son service aux communautés acadienne et francophone, et à cette province, et l'encourage à continuer à défendre leurs intérêts.

M. le president, je demande l'doption de cette résolution sans préavis et sans débat.

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

Whereas the 36th Annual General Meeting of the Fédération acadienne de la Nouvelle-Écosse was held at the Park Place Ramada in Dartmouth this past weekend; and

[Page 5710]

Whereas Mr. Stan Surette retired as President of the federation, having served in that capacity for the past four years; and

Whereas Mr. Surette has long been a champion for the Acadian and francophone communities of Nova Scotia;

Therefore be it resolved that this House thank Mr. Stan Surette for his service to the Acadian and francophone communities, and to this province, and encourage him to continue to advocate on their behalf.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Justice

RESOLUTION NO. 2932

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

Whereas the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia, the oldest Supreme Court in Canada, will be celebrating its 250th Anniversary this week; and

Whereas the anniversary committee has done a superb job of planning various commemorative activities to take place in Halifax; and

Whereas on Friday, this week, at 1:00 p.m., a procession will make its way from St. Paul's Church to the Law Courts;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of the House join together in celebrating the 250th Anniversary of the Supreme Court and support the various events happening to mark this special occasion in our province's history.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 5711]

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 Human Resources.

RESOLUTION NO. 2933

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

Whereas Tearmann House, a shelter for women leaving abusive relationships, has just marked its 20th year of service to northern Nova Scotia at Glasgow Square in New Glasgow; and

Whereas Doreen Paris, Judy Hughes and Flo MacPherson have been named honorary life members of the Tearmann Society's Board of Directors to mark their significant work for this organization; and

Whereas Tearmann and other transition houses in Nova Scotia provide invaluable service to women, families and communities;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House congratulate Doreen Paris, Judy Hughes and Flo MacPherson, and thank them for their years of leadership and service in reducing violence against women.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

[Page 5712]

The honourable Minister of Education.

RESOLUTION NO. 2934

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

Whereas TD Bank Financial Group has made a gift of $400,000 to Saint Mary's University to support bursaries; and

Whereas this gift will allow seven bursaries of $2,500 each; and

Whereas these bursaries will be open to all students in all fields of study and will be the largest available at Saint Mary's;

Therefore be it resolved that this House acknowledge this contribution to the education of Nova Scotian youth and thank TD Bank Financial Group for its corporate citizenship.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

INTRODUCTION OF BILLS

NOTICES OF MOTION

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Halifax Needham.

RESOLUTION NO. 2935

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

[Page 5713]

Whereas pap tests are an important diagnostic tool in helping to detect and treat cervical cancer in women; and

Whereas cervical cancer treatment is very effective, especially if the disease is caught early; and

Whereas this week is Pap Test Awareness Week in Nova Scotia;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this Legislature salute the Canadian Cancer Society and Cancer Care Nova Scotia for their work promoting pap tests and encourage all women in Nova Scotia to make regular pap tests a part of their overall wellness plan.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Richmond.

RESOLUTION NO. 2936

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: M. le président, à une date ultérieure, j'ai l'intention de proposer l'adoption de la résolution suivante:

Attendu que Wayne Gaudet a démontré un dévouement infatigable envers la population de Clare et de toute la Nouvelle-Écosse, de même qu'au Parti libéral de cette province; et

Attendu que lorsque le Parti libéral de la Nouvelle-Écosse a eu besoin d'un chef en janvier 2004, il s'est tourné encore une fois vers Wayne Gaudet pour remplir ce poste; et

Attendu que Wayne a démontré toutes les qualités d'intégrité et de dignité que la population néo-écossaise exige de ses représentants élus et que le Parti libéral attend de son chef;

[Page 5714]

Qu'il soit résolu que tous les membres de cette assemblée reconnaissent la contribution exceptionnelle de Wayne à cette législature et lui transmettent leurs meilleurs voeux alors qu'il cède son poste de chef du Parti libéral de la Nouvelle-Écosse.

M. le président, je demande l'adoption de cette résolution sans préavis et sans débat.

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

Whereas Wayne Gaudet has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to the people of Clare, all Nova Scotians, and to the Nova Scotia Liberal Party; and

Whereas when the Nova Scotia Party found itself in need of a Leader in January 2004, we once again turned to Wayne for the job; and

Whereas Wayne has demonstrated the quiet dignity, honesty, and integrity that Nova Scotians deserve from their elected representatives and the Nova Scotia Liberal Party expects from its Leader;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House acknowledge the contribution Wayne has made to this Legislature and wish him well as he steps down as Leader of the Nova Scotia Liberal Party.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried. (Standing Ovation)

The honourable Deputy Premier.

RESOLUTION NO. 2937

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

[Page 5715]

Whereas the honourable member for Clare is nearing the end of his service as Interim Leader for the Liberal Party; and

Whereas this weekend, his Party will choose his successor at their Leadership Convention; and

Whereas during his eleven years of service, the member has performed this duty not once, but twice, while his Party has undergone a search for a new Leader;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this Legislature commend the member for Clare for taking on this additional role on behalf of his Party and for the people of this province.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried. (Applause)

The honourable member for Halifax Chebucto.

RESOLUTION NO. 2938

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

Whereas on Friday, October 15, 2004, Nova Scotia lost 2003 Order of Nova Scotia recipient and The Nova Scotia Book of Days author, Shirley Burnham Elliott; and

Whereas Shirley Elliott served as the Legislative Librarian at Province House for 28 years, during which time she transformed it into a modern research library and organized valuable materials around Province House into an impressive collection of Nova Scotia history; and

Whereas her commitment to literacy and Nova Scotia's heritage continued after her retirement as demonstrated by the integral role she played in creating the Wolfville Memorial Library;

[Page 5716]

Therefore be it resolved that this Legislative Assembly express its deepest sympathy to the family of the late Shirley Elliott and recognize her lifelong dedication to her profession, her community and her province.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Digby-Annapolis.

RESOLUTION NO. 2939

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

Whereas J.D. Irving's Lewis Sawmill in Weymouth was lauded last week for two years of accident-free operation; and

Whereas the J.D. Irving company credited their workers' strong commitment to safety and diligence; and

Whereas J.D. Irving's Lewis Sawmill has gone 256,550 hours without a lost time accident;

Therefore be it resolved that this House congratulate J.D. Irving's Lewis Sawmill and their employees for their continued vigilance on these safety achievements.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

[Page 5717]

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Colchester North.

RESOLUTION NO. 2940

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

Whereas this past Sunday, law enforcement personnel marched down Barrington Street; and

Whereas members of the Halifax Regional Police, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Military Police, Corrections Canada and Custom Officers marched as part of the 22nd Law Enforcement Memorial Service; and

Whereas the march is held in honour of the brave officers who lost their lives in the last year;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House commend all of the law enforcement personnel on their participation in this worthy memorial, and thank them for acknowledging fellow fallen officers and the brave service they all provide.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Colchester North.

MR. WILLIAM LANGILLE: Mr. Speaker, I wonder if we could have a moment of silence.

[Page 5718]

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Colchester North as requested a moment of silence in memory of all fallen police officers.

Please rise for a moment of silence.

[One minute of silence was observed.]

[5:45 p.m.]

MR. SPEAKER: Thank you. Please be seated.

The honourable member for Hants East.

RESOLUTION NO. 2941

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

Whereas in 1952, Elroy and Elda Garden left Enfield to make a new life with their three young daughters in Prince George, British Columbia; and

Whereas they made several new lives raising a family of eight in their adopted province; and

Whereas on June 15th, 2004 their son John Garden was ordained a priest at an ordination ceremony at Sacred Heart Cathedral, Prince George;

Therefore be it resolved that this House of Assembly send best wishes to the Garden Family and, in particular, congratulate Father John Garden and wish him well in his life of devotion and duty

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

[Page 5719]

The honourable member for Halifax Clayton Park.

RESOLUTION NO. 2942

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

Whereas after years of struggle to have a woman appointed to the Senate, Judge Emily Murphy, Nellie McClung, Louise McKinney, Irene Parlby and Henrietta Muir Edwards petitioned the Supreme Court of Canada to rule on whether the term "qualified persons" included women; and

Whereas after the Supreme Court ruled against women's rights, these five women, continued their battle and appealed to the Privy Council in England and on October 18, 1929, the British Privy Council declared women to be persons under Canadian Law; and

Whereas on this day we now celebrate Persons Day to honour the struggle these women faced;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House recognize the contribution these five women have made to the political landscape of our country.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Kings North.

RESOLUTION NO. 2943

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

[Page 5720]

Whereas a beautifully written and illustrated book, "A Poppy is to Remember" has recently been released by Heather Patterson and Ron Lightburn of Kentville and published by Scholastic Press; and

Whereas the book centres on the importance of the poppy and its meaning to Veterans and their families; and

Whereas a Kentville veteran of World War II and the Korean War, Joseph Samson is illustrated in the book talking to his grandchildren about his medals for the very first time;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Heather Patterson and Ron Lightburn on their beautifully illustrated and educational book, and also send special thanks to veteran Joseph Samson for his dedication and commitment to this country during World War II and the Korean Conflict.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Halifax Atlantic.

RESOLUTION NO. 2944

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

Whereas Nova Scotia has been the birthplace and home of many distinguished Canadians and citizens of the world in the fields of music and literature, art, science, industry and politics; and

Whereas many visitors to Nova Scotia pass through the hometowns of these notable people without being aware of it; and

Whereas the Government of Nova Scotia has undertaken to develop the tourism industry;

[Page 5721]

Therefore be it resolved that this House support local heritage societies in working with the Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage to identify sites associated with these important figures in our cultural life and placing interpretive signage commemorating them.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Cape Breton West.

RESOLUTION NO. 2945

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

Whereas Cape Breton Island is steeped in splendiferous natural beauty and a people rich in culture and music; and

Whereas Ciaran MacGillivray and Fiona MacGillivray of Marion Bridge and Rosanne MacKenzie and Jimmy MacKenzie of Baddeck are a group of young, wholesome, talented Celtic musicians and singers know as The Cottars; and

Whereas The Cottars, who have already successfully launched two CDs entitled "Made in Cape Breton" and "On Fire", have just completed a major United States tour highlighted by their performance in Nashville, Tennessee and are preparing for a two-week music tour of Japan in December 2004;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House acknowledge and congratulate The Cottars for their tremendous success and recognize The Cottars as goodwill ambassadors for Cape Breton and all of Nova Scotia.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 5722]

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. 2946

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

Whereas the annual Hip Hip Hooray Wine and Cheese Auction was another outstanding success in Pictou County this year with approximately $6,000 being raised; and

Whereas the auction is held annually to assist the orthopaedic department of the Aberdeen Hospital; and

Whereas the event held at Summer Street Industries with assistance from the president of the Pictou County Arthritis Society, along with the Society's treasurer and co-chair and many other volunteers;

Therefore be it resolved that all MLAs extend our best wishes to the organizers of this annual event who do so much to assist orthopaedic patients in Pictou County.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Pictou West.

[Page 5723]

RESOLUTION NO. 2947

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

Whereas municipal government is the level of government that is closest to the people; and

Whereas municipal elections were held throughout Nova Scotia on Saturday, October 16, 2004; and

Whereas in the Town of Pictou there is a new mayor at the helm of the Shiretown, with an entirely new crew of councillors to steer the town into the future;

Therefore be it resolved that this Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate Mayor-elect Joe Hawes and Councillors-elect Ken Johnston and Andrew Lindsay in Ward 1, and Raymond "Labman" Gregory and Shawn McNamara in Ward 2, and wish them every success over the next four years.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Leader of the Liberal Party.

RESOLUTION NO. 2948

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

Whereas the Clare Shopper and the Lobster Bay Shopper are celebrating 20 years in business this year; and

Whereas "the Shoppers" are distributed biweekly to over 27,350 homes and businesses in southwestern Nova Scotia; and

[Page 5724]

Whereas these publications, "the Shoppers" are reliable vital links of communication throughout our communities;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House extend their best wishes and congratulations to the owner, Marc Graff, and staff on their 20th Anniversary.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Energy.

RESOLUTION NO. 2949

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

Whereas the members of the D.W. Archibald Memorial Chapter of the IODE recently celebrated 50 years of service in their community; and

Whereas about 30 current and past members attended the event which took place at a ceremony in Sydney Mines; and

Whereas two long-time members, Lois Johnston and Georgina MacPhee were presented with 50-year service pins;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House join me in congratulating the IODE in celebrating 50 years of community service, and commend Lois Johnston and Georgina MacPhee for half a century of service.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

[Page 5725]

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Leader of the Official Opposition.

RESOLUTION NO. 2950

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

Whereas businesspeople on Nova Scotia's Eastern Shore have finally have undertaken a process to improve their economy, including a detailed plan called Eastern Action: Work; and

Whereas 105 of those businesspeople attended a meeting in Musquodoboit Harbour yesterday October 17, 2004 to discuss ways of raising the profile of their region; and

Whereas many excellent ideas were shared at the meeting that will keep the ball rolling towards helping Eastern HRM, including the Eastern Shore, realize its vast economic potential;

Therefore be it resolved that this House congratulate the organizers of yesterday's Eastern Shore Business Rally and all those who attended, and urge the government to work closely with these dedicated businesspeople to make the Eastern Shore the economic engine it could be.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Richmond.

[Page 5726]

RESOLUTION NO. 2951

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

Whereas Leon Carter of River Bourgeois has received a Nova Scotia Amateur Golf Championship for a third year in 2004; and

Whereas Leon Carter is an outstanding athlete who has won this title, while also setting the best record in provincial history of 12 shots under par; and

Whereas the Nova Scotia Amateur Golf Championship is a tremendous achievement and demonstrates Leon Carter's exceptional ability and dedication to the sport of golf;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Leon Carter on receiving the title of this year's Nova Scotia Amateur Golf Champion, and wish him continued success.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Education.

RESOLUTION NO. 2952

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

Whereas Jana Miller of Truro was the featured soloist at the 2004 Order of Nova Scotia Investiture Ceremony; and

Whereas Jana Miller has received numerous awards at both local and provincial music festivals, and has completed her Grade 9 Royal Conservatory of Music examinations in both voice and piano; and

[Page 5727]

Whereas Jana Miller, a Grade 12 student at CEC in Truro, has performed on CBC Radio, and at Neptune Theatre as well as in school musicals, jazz, choirs and other community musical groups;

Therefore be it resolved that all members congratulate Jana Miller on her musical accomplishments and thank her for her contribution to the musical fabric of her school and community and wish her every success as she pursues a professional career in vocal performance.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Dartmouth South-Portland Valley.

RESOLUTION NO. 2953

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

Whereas many children in Nova Scotia, who cannot live with their families, rely on foster families for their care; and

Whereas foster families across the province provide this crucial service in spite of inadequate per diem rates, little support to help with rising insurance costs, and even less protection from legal costs of false accusations of abuse; and

Whereas October 17th to October 23rd is Foster Family Appreciation Week in Nova Scotia;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this Legislature salute the work of foster families in Nova Scotia, and recognize that more supports for foster families and children in foster care are urgently needed.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 5728]

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

Is it agreed?

I hear a No.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Cape Breton West.

RESOLUTION NO. 2954

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

Whereas tourism is essential to the long-term economic and social well-being of Cape Breton; and

Whereas on May 27, 2002, Resolution No. 4082 was approved in this House, calling upon the Minister of Transportation and Public Works to study the feasibility of a look-off at Route 4, Big Pond, overlooking the Bras d'Or Lakes; and

Whereas the Department of Transportation and Public Works is nearing completion of this look-off in Big Pond, Cape Breton, that will significantly enhance tourism potential for the region;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House recognize that the Minister of Transportation and Public Works and department officials should be acknowledged and congratulated for responding positively to Resolution No. 4082.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Dartmouth North.

[Page 5729]

RESOLUTION NO. 2955

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

Whereas this past Saturday, October 16, 2004, Mayor Peter Kelly, HRM, and Mayor John Morgan, CBRM, and many more municipal politicians were returned to office by the Nova Scotian voters; and

Whereas it is said that municipal government is truly the grassroots of politics in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas it takes many workers, volunteers and candidates to make elections a success;

Therefore be it resolved that this Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate all candidates, workers, and volunteers who supported democracy in Nova Scotia this past Saturday, October 16, 2004, municipal election day.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid.

RESOLUTION NO. 2956

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

Whereas the Royal Canadian Legions across Nova Scotia and Canada are once again preparing for Remembrance Day ceremonies; and

Whereas Royal Canadian Legion Calais Branch 162 in Lower Sackville will again recognize the sacrifice made by our veterans and service personnel; and

[Page 5730]

Whereas at this year's ceremony at the cenotaph on Memory Lane in Lower Sackville, hundreds of residents, veterans, service personnel and youth will participate;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate and thank the Royal Canadian Legion Calais Branch 162 on their participation in Remembrance Day ceremonies on November 11, 2004, and for remembering the sacrifice made by our veterans and all service personnel.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Cape Breton Nova.

[6:00 p.m.]

RESOLUTION NO. 2957

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

Whereas on Saturday, October 2, 2004, at the Boardwalk in the City of Sydney, a special event, attended by approximately 100, kicked off Autism Month; and

Whereas the Autism/PDD Society of Cape Breton is the oldest continually-operating Autism Society in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas the Society's members work not only to improve the quality of life for people living with ASD, but also to educate the public on the conditions of those with ASD;

Therefore be it resolved that Members of the Legislative Assembly congratulate the Autism PDD Society of Cape Breton; Natalie Gallaway and Annette Murphy-Robinson of EIIS; Constable Gil Boone, community police officer; firefighter Raymond Abbass; mascot Screech of the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles; and all those who donated prizes, for their

[Page 5731]

ongoing efforts in helping families living with autism, and for giving full truth to the adage "to keep a lamp burning, we have to keep putting oil in it".

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Halifax Clayton Park.

RESOLUTION NO. 2958

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

Whereas throughout the world, Canada is looked upon as a fair and just society, where we as Canadian citizens enjoy a life of freedom and tremendous opportunity; and

Whereas the community of Clayton Park has been richly enhanced by the number of new Canadians who have chosen to make their home in our midst; and

Whereas October 18th to October 24th is set aside as Citizenship Week to celebrate the cultural mosaic Canada has become and provide an opportunity for us all to celebrate how fortunate we as Canadians are;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House welcome new Canadians to our country, and take time to celebrate our own good fortune.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

[Page 5732]

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. 2959

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

Whereas Leo Toulany of Timberlea is a respected businessman in our community; and

Whereas Leo and his family daily demonstrate a dedication to serving area residents; and

Whereas Leo Toulany's positive approach and welcomed advice are always appreciated;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature thank and congratulate Leo Toulany and his family for their hard work, and best wishes for a bright future.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid.

RESOLUTION NO. 2960

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

Whereas Dr. Mark Fletcher, an emergency room physician, has been in charge of the emergency room at the Cobequid Community Health Centre for many years; and

[Page 5733]

Whereas Dr. Fletcher opened his first Family Focus Medical Clinics in July 2001, in Lower Sackville and Dartmouth, and has recently opened his fourth Family Focus Medical Clinic inside the Atlantic Superstore on Joseph Howe Drive in Halifax; and

Whereas through his work in the emergency room, Dr. Fletcher identified the need for community walk-in clinics to accommodate patients with extraordinarily long wait times in ERs to see doctors, because they don't have family physicians or were unable to get appointments quickly enough;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate Dr. Mark Fletcher for recognizing the important need for community walk-in clinics, and wish him success on the opening of his fourth Family Focus Medical Clinic in Halifax.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Dartmouth South-Portland Valley.

RESOLUTION NO. 2961

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

Whereas October 17, 2004, marked the United Nations International Day for the Eradication of Poverty; and

Whereas the target of the global declaration is to halve extreme poverty worldwide by 2015; and

Whereas the Province of Nova Scotia continues to allow thousands of its residents to live in the kind of poverty that rivals that found in developing countries;

[Page 5734]

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this Legislature condemn poor government policies that lead to poverty among Nova Scotians, including 38,000 children, and adopt the United Nations target of halving poverty by 2015 in our own province.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear several Noes.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Pictou West.

RESOLUTION NO. 2962

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

Whereas 4-H provides important training in life skills, as well as opportunities for youth in rural Nova Scotia; and

Whereas many Pictou County 4-H members placed well at the recent 4-H Provincial Show held in Truro from October 1st to October 3rd; and

Whereas Robert Lavers of the Scotsburn 4-H Club showed the champion Angus calf and placed first in the beef clipping competition and, as well, has been selected to attend the National Beef Heifer Show at the Royal Winter Fair in Toronto next month as part of Team Nova Scotia;

Therefore be it resolved that this Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate Robert Lavers of the Scotsburn 4-H Club and wish him continued success at the Royal Winter Fair.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

[Page 5735]

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. 2963

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

Whereas Winnifred Costley Lecky was born April 14, 1930 in Blue Mountain, Kings County, and died October 7, 2004 at her home in Spryfield; and

Whereas Winnie raised four children of her own and was a wise and tireless counsellor to many others; and

Whereas Winnie was a pioneering advocate for the rights of mental health patients and a founding member of New Horizons, as well as being a highly-skilled needlewoman, story teller and a tireless supporter of the Golden Age Social Club;

Therefore be it resolved that this House express its sorrow at the passing of Winnifred Costley Lecky, a Nova Scotian whose generosity and whose deep and quiet faith enriched the lives of all she met.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Leader of the Official Opposition.

RESOLUTION NO. 2964

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

[Page 5736]

Whereas the Cape Breton Business Hall of Fame was established by the Sydney and Area Chamber of Commerce in partnership with the University College of Cape Breton in 2002 to honour individuals from the Cape Breton business community who paved the road for future generations through their achievement and community involvement; and

Whereas Simon and Kay Haddad of Sydney were among those honoured at the Business Hall of Fame Gala on September 20, 2004; and

Whereas since Kay's Kozy Korner opened in 1952, the late Kay and Simon Haddad served up excellent food, generosity and kindness at Kay's and at successive ventures;

Therefore be it resolved that this House recognize the late Kay and Simon Haddad for their entrepreneurial spirit, sports sponsorship and just plain kindness they offered their community for over 50 years.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

ORDERS OF THE DAY

GOVERNMENT BUSINESS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Government House Leader.

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

PRIVATE AND LOCAL BILLS FOR SECOND READING

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 143.

Bill No. 143 - The Ladies Golf Association of Nova Scotia Act.

[Page 5737]

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Justice.

HON. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker, I move second reading of this bill.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for second reading of Bill No. 143. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

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

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I move that Bill No. 143 be referred to Committee of the Whole House on Bills.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The honourable Government House Leader.

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

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

[6:10 p.m. The House resolved into a CWH on Bills with Deputy Speaker Mr. James DeWolfe in the Chair.]

[6:13 p.m. CWH on Bills rose and the House reconvened. Mr. Speaker, Hon. Murray Scott, resumed the Chair.]

[Page 5738]

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

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

Bill No. 87 - Electricity Act.

Bill No. 110 - Protection for Persons in Care Act.

Bill No. 130 - Legal Profession Act.

Bill No. 131 - Police Act.

Bill No. 138 - Trade Union Act.

Bill No. 143 - The Ladies Golf Association of Nova Scotia Act.

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

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

When shall these bills be read a third time?

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Today.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

The honourable Government House Leader.

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

PUBLIC BILLS FOR THIRD READING

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Government House Leader.

[Page 5739]

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 119.

Bill No. 119 - Agriculture Administration Amendment (2004) Act.

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

HON. CHRISTOPHER D'ENTREMONT: Mr. Speaker, I move third reading of Bill No. 119.

[6:15 p.m.]

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Hants East.

MR. JOHN MACDONELL: Mr. Speaker, I will restate my comments of the other day. I want to say that the minister's moving of this bill has not been a moving experience. The Federation of Agriculture and I think farmers generally are the losers out of this bill. The bill is basically a housekeeping bill and the minister, I think, probably, for easier working for the department and so on, there are some changes here that have probably been long overdue. So we can certainly agree with the minister's desire to see these things cleaned up and I think that's a good thing.

We would agree with his staff that this is the appropriate thing. I want to thank the minister for the changes he's made to address the concerns of the NSGEU and the hiring of public servants in this case, but the issue that I take with the minister is around the Farm Registration Act.

I think that the minister should recognize that the Federation of Agriculture is a body of farmers that actually speaks on behalf of farmers, and for the industry. I think the goal of the Federation of Agriculture is to represent the concerns of farmers appropriately and accurately and to be there to make a case for their particular issues. This is a body for which funding is particularly difficult. I think funding from the agriculture sector is important to them. The membership dues that are paid are important to them, in order for them to carry out their work, and I think that they certainly don't want to be attached to government dollars.

In other words, they don't want to be seen as coming under the wing of government, when they're actually trying to be an advocate for the farming community and they have to sometimes go toe to toe with government on particular policy and particular issues. For them to have a funding source that's not connected to government or not connected to any particular outside interest, is important to them and it helps keep that organization to be an appropriate voice for the industry.

[Page 5740]

Mr. Speaker, I think the most confusing part for them, and for me as well, and I'm going to assume for my colleague, the MLA for Annapolis, has been that the minister had approached us and asked for support from each of the Opposition Parties, that he actually wanted to make a change in the Farm Registration Act that would address the concerns that the federation had. By and large, that concern is that people could call or apply to have their dues rebated back to them, and this turns out to be about 12 per cent of farmers or farm operations that actually do this, somewhere in the range of 300 out of 2,500.

The debate could go on about whether or not the federation actually speaks to the concerns of those individuals or not and this is one for them and the federation, but certainly the federation, in order to be a voice, can't be giving back its membership dues because it prevents it from speaking well, and I think that this is a case that they have to make. It's one that they had made to the government, actually last December at the annual general meeting for the Federation of Agriculture. A relatively newly-minted minister came before the federation. One of the requests the federation made to the minister was that they would like to see this done, that they would no longer be required to rebate those dollars, and I think the minister in a sign of goodwill actually said he would meet them there, that this would be something that was doable and he was interested in pursuing that for them.

I think you can imagine my surprise to find out that after the minister had made that statement to them, that he was in agreement, after he had come to the Opposition to see that we were in agreement with that and that we wouldn't be pursuing the minister in a hostile fashion on this. It's, I guess, bewildering to think that after all that, the minister refused to bring this forward. At this late date, I think what's frustrating is, before the bill came to the House, I asked the minister if this change was going to be there, he said, yes. After the bill came to the House and this change wasn't in the bill, the minister assured me that they would be bringing in an amendment to address that and that never happened.

I have to say that on all these fronts, I'm bewildered, but I'm disappointed. I think if the minister wants to come to the Opposition to ask for our support, he should at least come forward with the very change that he's asking for.

We're going to support the moving of this bill, Mr. Speaker, through third reading, but I want the record to show my displeasure and regret that the minister refused to make the changes that he had committed his government to do. He did make the change that was worrisome for the NSGEU, and I've already stated that I was glad to see that. With those comments, I'll soon take my seat.

Something I want the minister to be aware of is that the federation will have its annual general meeting again this year in the not too distant future. I would expect that they'll be interested in hearing what the minister has to say in this regard, why he's backed away from that commitment. I think that considering the history of this Tory Government and the way that it has taken on the agricultural community, and not in a positive way, that this would

[Page 5741]

have been an olive branch that the minister could have offered and hasn't offered. I think he will have to answer for that with the association. With those comments, I take my seat, Mr. Speaker. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Annapolis.

MR. STEPHEN MCNEIL: Mr. Speaker, I'm pleased to speak on Bill No. 119, the Agriculture Administration Amendment (2004) Act. I don't mind telling you this has been a very frustrating process for me. Some people are suggesting that I've done quite well to have lasted here a year without being frustrated. About December of last year, when the minister stood in front of the Federation of Agriculture and suggested to them that he would be more than willing to move forward with making changes to the Farm Registration Act, it was welcome news.

When he came to the member for Hants East looking for his support, and my support from the Liberal caucus, and when we gave him an affirmative response, suggesting that we both believed this was in the best interest of the agricultural community, he came to me and said, Stephen, I don't know if you understand this or not, but your riding was one of the ones that was most vocal about this. I said I recognize that. Four or five years ago, when this was brought forward, I recognized that my constituency and a number of the people in the agricultural community were somewhat opposed to this. But I said to him, when you look at 2,500 farmers in Nova Scotia, almost 2,200 of them support the federation, 300 asked for a refund. More than half of those, Mr. Speaker, is less than $180.

I know the minister is going to say, in the House today, that that money is better in the pockets of farmers. Well, I want to know if he asked those farmers that when they were standing on the steps of the Legislature last Spring, when the federation was leading the charge about the lack of initiative of this government to deal with the crisis in agriculture. I want to know if he had asked the farmers then, what they would have said. I can tell you what they would have said, Mr. Speaker, spending that $50 is a good investment in agriculture. It's a very good investment. One of the reasons I think, perhaps, those changes haven't happened is because they're afraid to get a lobby together that could actually put pressure on this government to be funded properly. I think the member for Hants East suggested it right when he said the federation wants to be separate from government. They want to be funded by the industry, and that's what this is.

Can you believe, this is an Act Respecting the Administration of Agriculture, and yet you're asking farmers to send you a registration fee, which you're going to turn around, if they ask for it, and send a cheque back to them? Does that make sense? This bill does nothing, to do anything on the farm except deal with the ivory tower. This bill deals with the bureaucrats across the street. It doesn't do anything for the farmers of Nova Scotia.

[Page 5742]

It's interesting, Mr. Speaker, I had mentioned earlier, I told the minister when he suggested to me that in my riding this was going to be a major issue. I said to him, and I will make that commitment publicly to him, as I've said everywhere else, I would be more than willing to stand beside him and defend the changes to the Registration Act because I believe it's the right thing to do for agriculture, period. It's not a political thing, it's the right thing to do for agriculture, but somewhere along the way, from our conversation going from talking in the halls to the Law Amendments Committee back to here, somebody else talked to the minister, someone else tried to discourage him from the fact of what happened five or six years ago.

I want to say to the minister, even though I would have stood with him in my constituency, I can guarantee you, at the annual meeting in December, he'll be standing alone. Those same people who are encouraging you now to take that out - the only thing the Federation of Agriculture asked for - the only thing they asked for is being ignored. I'll tell you, he will be the one standing alone defending that. They put "former" in front of former ministers because it's past tense, Mr. Speaker. They should not be setting agricultural policy today, the fault lies squarely on your lap and on your desk, Mr. Minister.

When I saw this bill and we had a bill briefing with my colleague from the NDP, one of the things they suggested as a selling feature was Clause 11, Section 164, and this basically put the authority in the hands of the minister and removed it from the Governor in Council when it came to the hiring policies at Nova Scotia Agriculture College. It was trumpeted as a good thing because it was really surrounding research and development. It gave the university the flexibility to quickly turn over and take advantage of some of those research and development dollars that are available.

Quite frankly, I supported that and I think it's the right thing to do, but what I found interesting was when the NSGEU came before the Law Amendments Committee wanting that change and I asked the president of the NSGEU specifically, what difference would it make to your members who are presently at the Nova Scotia Agriculture College putting Minister as opposed to Governor in Council, and there is no answer. There is no answer.

Yet we removed that out of the bill - why? Maybe the minister will clear this up, I don't know why we removed it from the bill. The one thing the Federation of Agriculture asked for wasn't there, yet NSGEU came forward and said, we want this removed, no explanation of why and he removed it. It was removed.

AN HON MEMBER: Why?

MR. MCNEIL: Why is a good question.

[Page 5743]

Mr. Speaker, I believe it's rather ironic that between the time the bill left here and came back, I think the Justice Minister had more say on this than the Minister of Agriculture had to say on it, and that's not right, when you're dealing with an industry that has been in crisis ever since I came in this House, prior to that - on May 20, 2003, by the time you go through this bill and you start looking at some of the things that have been taken out - "Governor in Council" has been replaced in the odd place by "Minister"; you have "lease" added behind "hold"; you have a spelling mistake that's been corrected - I'm sure everyone at the federation's rally tomorrow will be thrilled to find out this has made such an impact on their industry.

I hope - and I'll challenge the minister today - that if we're both fortunate enough to still be here next Spring, perhaps instead of bringing in a law respecting the administration of agriculture, perhaps we would bring a bill in that would be called respecting agriculture, finding its real place in the rural economy. I told the minister five or six days ago in this House that I congratulated him on Bill No. 111 because I believed that no matter what happens in his political career and what happens over the next 20 years, when anything is changed in Bill No. 111 dealing with the Acadian community, he will be recognized as bringing that forward and being a leader.

I think he had the opportunity here, he had both Opposition Parties in support, both Opposition Parties were willing to support him in this endeavour and he backed down from it. This was an opportunity to give the Federation of Agriculture some proper funding, give the agricultural community a real voice, one that is properly funded that they could lobby this government and support - we're talking about giving out a $10 million loan in the BSE crisis. I'd like to know what the uptake is on it, and there isn't any.

[6:30 p.m.]

We're standing here changing a bill because of a misspelling. (Interruptions) Very much so. I'm doing well because my frustration level is getting to the point where it might be a good idea for me to sit down, Mr. Speaker. I would encourage the minister to not be afraid to be a little bold. Perhaps, when he's looking at dealing with the agricultural community and writing legislation that will affect it, ask the federation. Let's go to the federation, let's go to farmers - let's not go to the Law Amendments Committee and deal with the NSGEU and let them decide what's going to be in this bill.

Again, I will close with this one challenge to the minister. I look forward to next Spring, if we're both still here, to the bill that will be coming forward respecting agriculture. The agricultural community is going to be asking when they see this, where's the beef? There isn't any in that. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: If I recognize the honourable Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries it will be to close the debate.

[Page 5744]

The honourable Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries.

HON. CHRISTOPHER D'ENTREMONT: Mr. Speaker, I have to make a couple of comments on that comment. We are continuing to look at it - my word to the federation last year was that I would look at the refund issue - I'm still looking at it and yes, I agree at this point, money is better spent in the pockets of the farmers at this point in time. We will look at it at another day. This is simply a housekeeping bill, and there were a number of things that needed to be addressed in order for us to continue doing our work.

Mr. Speaker, I move third reading of Bill No. 119.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for third reading of Bill No. 119. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

Ordered that this bill do pass. Ordered that the title be as read by the Clerk. Ordered that the bill be engrossed.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 87.

Bill No. 87 - Electricity Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I move third reading of Bill No. 87.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the Official Opposition on an introduction.

MR. DARRELL DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, we are joined this evening in the west gallery by the 6th Cole Harbour Scout Troop. They are here this evening to watch the proceedings for a little while. With them is Rob Kerr, Willy Adams, Jason and Chad Schlagel, the Scout leaders, along with some parent chaperones. I would like to extend the welcome of the House to them and hope they enjoy the proceedings, and I look forward to having a chance to chat with them. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: We certainly appreciate and welcome our special guests to the gallery today. Thank you.

The honourable member for Cape Breton Centre.

[Page 5745]

MR. FRANK CORBETT: Mr. Speaker, Bill No. 97 is an interesting bill because it is - No. 87, excuse me. Bill No. 97 is a good one too. I forgot who fell here last week. Bill No. 87 is interesting, but much of it has dealt with the idea that in the Spring there will be a much more comprehensive bill coming forward. So again, as in the previous bill we debated in this House, much is left unsaid and we are told - I think I will use the Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries' words, it's a housekeeping bill but it's a housekeeping bill with a few problems in it. We made a motion in the Law Amendments Committee and were unsuccessful with it, and we are going to see how that plays out.

It's our contention that the proper place to discuss and set rates of pay, whether it's for alternate energy suppliers or whomever, is at the board, not in the boardrooms at Emera. We feel that's important. We also believe when there are monies forthcoming from the federal government for these wind producers, that we should be clear that these people have access to that full amount, that it's not another arrangement from the supplier, NSPI, that they should have access to any of that money. I think it's money that should truly come straight through to the originating company to allow them capital and so on, and that's the reason for it.

There's another part of this bill, Mr. Speaker, that makes it somewhat contentious when we look at the fact that they use, not a flat rate across this province, but varying entry rates. Some of the reasons are that it's the distance to market. Other arguments that the distributor would put in is because there's an excess of energy in that area. As an example, in industrial Cape Breton where we have large coal-generating stations, therefore, there is a surplus tag put on the wind energy that comes out of certain sections of Cape Breton. Well, I think the opposite to the argument, that NSPI/Emera puts forward the one that should stand. If there's an area that certainly needs alternate energy sources it is the areas that have been kind of dragged down by the fact that they are large suppliers of energy through fossil fuels. That's the idea, if we could do that from there and replace those as quickly as we could, it would go a long way.

So, Mr. Speaker, I don't believe in Emera's argument, so we have an excess of energy being located in industrial Cape Breton, therefore, we should be paying anybody anything less when they put their energy source on-line.

Again, as I said on the outset about Bill No. 87, this is a small part of a very large problem with energy and electricity in this province. We've got to be working forward, Mr. Speaker, to coming up with a system that allows us to use fewer and fewer fossil fuels, or the fact if while we're burning those fossil fuels, we have to seriously look into and play our part in clean coal technology and so on. We have to remember - and I can attest to this very personally - that the days of us deriving any economic benefit - if there ever was - by burning coal in industrial Cape Breton, has long since passed when there are no real operating mines and the fact that we're now looking at going into very pristine areas and looking at going in at so-called reclamation programs and strip mining. I think we've got to be cognizant of that,

[Page 5746]

that there is no economic value in that. There's no economic value in the jobs and there's no real economic value to the province via any kind of resource payment.

While we're seeing this bill go forward, Mr. Speaker, I believe that the Energy Department has to be ready, the ministry has to be ready in the Spring to show us that there is a real vision for the production of electricity, the distribution of it in this province that makes us not only one of the greenest provinces in this country, but makes us one that has a sustainable system that will benefit and be cost effective for all Nova Scotians.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Richmond.

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: Mr. Speaker, I'm pleased on behalf of the Liberal caucus to say a few words on the Electricity Act, Bill No. 87, on third reading. First of all, in regard to the bill, we had a number of presentations that were made to us from some concerned renewable energy producers, from Nova Scotia Power and Emera, and we also received some correspondence from the Renewable Energy Producers Association of Nova Scotia.

Mr. Speaker, I believe every member of this House is very interested and committed to renewable energy. Many of us have seen different community organizations, community economic development groups, and different businesses that have expressed an interest in establishing renewable energy in our own areas of the province, regardless of which specific area it might be. I think we're all excited by the possibility that derives from renewable energy.

I can tell you, Mr. Speaker, one of my first opportunities to see renewable energy at work was in visiting the beautiful riding of Clare and attending a fundraiser down in the riding. I believe when you're on - I'm not sure if it's the number four hole of the golf course, you have a beautiful view of the wind turbine that has been set up down in that area. To see the technology, to see the fact that that is where our province is prepared to move forward, it's certainly a positive step for the future development of this province and for the protection of our environment.

Mr. Speaker, we'll be watching to see what other parts of the proposals that came forward from the consultations that took place on the governance of the energy marketplace here in this province that the minister will be prepared to continue to bring forward as we do open up competition in this province. We want to make sure that the consumers and the businesses of this province continue to have the best possible rate when it comes to their electricity, something which all Nova Scotians rely upon in their everyday lives.

Mr. Speaker, this is also an opportunity to remind the government that we have coming up in the Fall, an application by Nova Scotia Power to increase the rates, an increase which is going to impact all Nova Scotians, because we all rely upon electricity, as I just mentioned, in our day-to-day lives. I can certainly tell you that our caucus will be making

[Page 5747]

strong representations on this issue on behalf of Nova Scotians, on behalf of the businesses, and on behalf of the people of our province who will clearly be impacted by this type of increase.

Mr. Speaker, I can tell you, locally, Stora Enso, for example, has already indicated that the increase being proposed means that that company, next year, is looking at an increase of $16 million to $18 million in their electricity bill. We all know that that facility, like many other large industrial customers in this province, have gone through some reorganization, some reduction in their employment, and I am extremely concerned about what impact such an increase in their electricity is going to have on that company. The company has made it clear to us that the one aspect of their operation which places them at a non-competitive nature with the rest of the pulp and paper mills throughout North America is the cost of electricity.

Mr. Speaker, I would hope that the Minister of Energy and this government are not just going to go to these hearings and try to put on a brave face saying that they oppose these rate increases. What will come out of those rate hearings is that one of the main reasons Emera/Nova Scotia Power has asked for this increase is because of the increased taxation that they have been paying to this government. On the one hand this government is more than happy to take the extra revenue, the Minister of Finance is more than happy to take the extra revenue from Nova Scotia Power, because it is a means of taxing the people of this province without directly taxing them. By increasing the taxes to Nova Scotia Power the cost is passed on to Nova Scotians, so it is a form of indirect taxation to Nova Scotians throughout this entire province. (Interruptions)

Mr. Speaker, well, we'll see if the Minister of Education wishes to make a presentation himself at the rate hearings that are going to take place. Maybe he can explain to us, and explain to Nova Scotians, especially those on fixed incomes. The increase being sought is approximately an extra $10 a month to the average Nova Scotian's electricity bill. Now, $10 a month may not sound like much, but if you are senior, if you're someone who's on a disability pension or if you're on a fixed income or receiving benefits from the Department of Community Services, $120 a month is a tremendous amount of money for those people to have to pay.

I question whether the Minister of Community Services is prepared to tell us today, in conjunction with the Minister of Energy, if he is prepared to increase the benefits to Nova Scotians who rely upon his department by whatever amount Nova Scotia Power's increase ends up being at the end of the day. His $4 a month that he's sending to them right now for extra pasta, as he has indicated he would like them to buy with it, is clearly not going to meet the increase that is being sought by Nova Scotia Power.

[Page 5748]

Mr. Speaker, this bill is a step in the right direction. Our government in the Province of Nova Scotia must continue to show leadership in encouraging renewable energy in this province, something that is going to benefit our province, benefit our children, and benefit our environment for the long-term future. This is a first step, and I continue to assure you that we will continue to pressure this government and to pressure Nova Scotia Power and all producers of electricity to move toward renewable energy for the benefit of our entire province.

[6:45 p.m.]

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Halifax Chebucto.

MR. HOWARD EPSTEIN: Mr. Speaker, consideration of Bill No. 87 throws us right into the middle of problems with respect to energy policy. Energy policy is an extremely complex matter in our province. The focus of this bill is on the electricity portion of our energy policy. This is something that is highly contentious in the province, it's something that's highly convoluted in the province, it's something that we all have to take an active interest in.

For many years Nova Scotia was a big producer of coal which was, and still is, the main fuel used for generation of electricity in this province. Unfortunately, the coal that's now burned, of course, is imported. We all recognize that burning fossil fuels has negative environmental impacts.

This bill does two things. One is, it takes us a small step along the road towards finding alternatives in terms of energy generation when it comes to electricity. It says, let's look at renewables, let's look at things that are sources of electric power that can be renewable - of which hydroelectricity would be one example, wind power would be another. Those are the best examples because we instantly recognize them as renewable sources, indeed, as generally very clean sources, particularly as their history has been in Nova Scotia, and that's a very good thing.

The difficulty with what the bill does here, however, is that it doesn't set any hard and firm targets . . .

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please.

MR. EPSTEIN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. The difficulty is that the bill doesn't itself set any hard and firm targets for the percentage of our electricity which ought to be generated from renewables. The minister, the Cabinet, will set those levels in due course by regulation. We've already heard through last year's energy policy, through various releases, of the various levels of targets that the government has in mind. We would be a lot happier - we would be much happier - if the targets were higher targets, and a greater percentage of our

[Page 5749]

electricity was to be generated from renewables. At the same time, we have to recognize that this is something that's only going to develop step by step over time. I'll get back to the question of renewables in a moment because it's an important one and there's a particular point I want to flag for the members and for those who are listening to this debate.

The second thing the bill does, though, is it begins to set the stage for a competitive electricity generation and selling marketplace in Nova Scotia. It does this, again, in a very small and very incremental way. It sets the stage for what's called wheeling. Wheeling is a process in which electricity, which is generated someplace by the company which does not own the transmission lines, can be moved along those transmission lines and sold to some other customer.

We know there's only going to be one set of transmission lines in the province. It just doesn't make sense for different companies to build their own transmission lines and have parallel transmission lines. This is what's called a natural monopoly when it comes to a transmission and distribution system. So if more generators besides our one main generator that exists right now - that is, Nova Scotia Power - is going to become involved in generating electricity, then they have to be able to have access to those lines, the one existing transmission and distribution system.

The parallel, of course, is with something we're all familiar with . . .

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. There's too much noise in the Chamber. I ask the members to take their conversations outside, please.

MR. EPSTEIN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. The parallel is with something we're all quite familiar with, which is essentially wheeling along telephone lines or communications lines to the extent that at one time we relied on those. Of course, now there's a lot of satellites and satellite transmission and so on. But, at an earlier stage, the communications companies were faced with exactly the same question and a tariff had to be established in order to allow wheeling by other companies besides the one main monopoly that usually existed in different jurisdictions to allow them access.

That's what's starting to happen with respect to electricity. It's starting to happen all over North America and some jurisdictions, notably California, and in our country notably Alberta, have moved ahead fairly aggressively with respect to a competitive marketplace that involved wheeling.

Both of those jurisdictions, and in fact other jurisdictions that have moved heavily into competitive electricity marketplaces, have run into serious difficulties and I have to say that moving ahead slowly step by step in Nova Scotia with respect to this restructuring of the electricity marketplace is probably appropriate. We have to be very cautious. We have to learn the lessons from other jurisdictions if we're going to move in that direction and that's

[Page 5750]

in a way what this bill does. This bill takes us by one small step into the competitive electricity marketplace.

So although it's an interesting idea how it is that there's going to be competition, although it's important that there be wheeling, although it's important that we recognize that the generators of electricity besides Nova Scotia Power are very likely to be relying on renewables, we should nonetheless move cautiously as we move along and Nova Scotia had the wisdom to set up an Electricity Marketplace Governance Committee to study this in the last few years and it has given us some guidance as to how to move ahead. So that part of the bill is probably very reasonable.

I want to go back now to the other part which is the renewables part of the bill. Now, the two are, of course, linked and they're linked for exactly the reason I indicated, namely that many of the companies that are now interested in getting into the business of generating electricity are interested in doing it through renewables. These are the companies that are developing wind farms and these are the companies that are looking at the potential for hydro electricity.

In Nova Scotia the potential for hydro electricity, however, is relatively limited. We don't have the huge waterfalls that lend themselves to the kind of large and extremely dynamic generation of electricity that we see out of Quebec, for example, or out of Labrador. We just don't have them and most of the possibilities in Nova Scotia have already been explored and exploited at some point. It's not that there isn't still some potential - there is, but when it comes to serious advances in renewables in Nova Scotia, it's really wind power that we're looking at. The many studies that have been done have indicated that Nova Scotia is an ideal place for the generation of electricity through wind power. There are many locations that lend themselves to the establishment of individual windmills or of multi-windmills known as wind farms. That's going to happen.

Now, the problem is that although the bill says that the government is interested in this, the problem is that although the regulations are going to come, the problem is that it's far from clear that Nova Scotia Power, the dominant player in the electricity marketplace here, is seriously interested in renewable energy from wind. My experience over many years of dealing with Nova Scotia Power, both in its newer manifestation as a privatized company since 1992, and before that when it was still a publicly owned Crown Corporation, has been that the company is very committed to trying to keep in place for as long as possible all of the existing power plants that it has and those power plants are primarily dependent on the burning of fossil fuels.

Now, I can understand why Nova Scotia Power is interested in that. Once it has a dollar investment in those power plants, of course, it would like to see them live through their full life expectancy rather than to suddenly try to mothball them and transfer wholesale or even in significant proportions into some other form of electricity generation. That's

[Page 5751]

understandable and indeed, although a financial advantage for the company, it's probably also to some extent a financial advantage for those of us who pay the electricity bills because if indeed we were called upon as consumers to pay the full cost, to absorb the full cost of mothballing plants that exist, that could in fact be a difficult cost to absorb. I recognize all of that.

At the same time, we have to recognize the way of the future and the way of the future is certainly going to be electricity generation through renewables. We have to recognize not only that the technology exists, not only that the technology is getting better all the time and not only that the technology is getting cheaper all the time, we have to recognize that when full cost analysis is done, including negative health impacts on people from the burning of fossil fuels and other negative environmental impacts, the full cost of burning fossil fuels is not just the cost on our electricity bills.

The cost shows up in the cost of our health care system. The cost shows up in the health of people in Nova Scotia and the detrimental impact on the health of people in Nova Scotia and on the health of people who are on the receiving ends of the winds that carry the emissions from those plants. Indeed, in Nova Scotia, we're on the receiving end of emissions from coal-burning electricity generating plants in the Ohio Valley in the United States. We're where the wind corridors come when they go across the industrial Midwest of the United States. So we have to be aware of that. We have an obligation to be aware of that and if we're going to do any effective talking to our neighbours to the south about their reining in the emissions that are problematic for us, we have to take effective steps here also to be in a position to be able to say to them with any credibility that they should be making changes.

Now, I have a problem with one particular aspect that is already in front of us of how Nova Scotia Power is proposing to deal with wind-based electricity generators in Nova Scotia. Members will know, from earlier discussion and from discussion in and around this House during Bill No. 87 being in front of us, that Nova Scotia Power has put out a call for proposals, a request for proposals for small-scale wind generators to come forward and make offerings to them of a certain amount of kilowatt hours for wind energy. This is a good thing, in a way. But the problem is, that the price that they're proposing to pay, the tariff that they are proposing to pay is very low. I have to say that I read that as discouraging to the development of a dynamic wind-based electricity generating industry in Nova Scotia.

We know from hearing from some of the generators that they have problems with this. We know that they don't like the way in which there is a geographic difference in the price that Nova Scotia Power is proposing to pay, depending on whether the plant is located in different parts of the province. I have to say, in my mind, it doesn't really make sense for Nova Scotia to do that. We know that those generators have problems because Nova Scotia Power is proposing to clawback, in their price structure, a portion of a subsidy aimed at those on-the-ground generators that the federal government has put in place. But do you know what? Even though I have problems with those elements of the tariff structure, what I

[Page 5752]

particularly have problems with is the bottom line in terms of the pennies that Nova Scotia Power is proposing to pay.

If you look at what they're actually proposing to pay to those wind generators, it's less than they pay already to some of the small hydro generation operators who they have contracts with right now. Now, that's problematic. There is one company that has been in the business of selling electricity from a small hydro plant in Guysborough County for 20 years. That plant has been selling electricity for 20 years in a refurbished plant that's essentially paid for and isn't new equipment, but windmills would be new equipment and Nova Scotia Power is saying, we're going to pay you, the generators, less than what we're paying under a previous contract for hydroelectricity from an old plant. This doesn't really make sense.

[7:00 p.m.]

I want it put on the record that the member for Cape Breton Centre, our Energy Critic, attempted at the Law Amendments Committee to amend this bill in order to give to the Utility and Review Board jurisdiction, clear jurisdiction to review the tariff that Nova Scotia Power was proposing to pay for wind energy under its existing call for proposals or indeed under any calls for proposals. I want it on the record that the Third Party voted against that proposal. They wouldn't support that. I find this very peculiar, because if Nova Scotia Power's position is that it's paying a fair rate and it's offering a fair rate, then, of course, they would have no concern about seeing the matter go to the Utility and Review Board. If they believe, and they can show that their proposed tariff is fair, then they would win any argument at the Utility and Review Board. We've heard Nova Scotia Power suggest that their tariff is fair, but they've said a second thing - they've also said it's just normal business, and we're playing hardball with these suppliers.

Well, the public interest is not in playing hardball with suppliers of wind energy; playing hardball discourages people from getting into that business. The public interest is to encourage people to get into that business and that's exactly why we tried to sponsor an amendment to Bill No. 87, to make it clear that the tariff ought to be set at the Utility and Review Board. It may be that under the existing legislation there is some opportunity for the generators of wind to take their case to the Utility and Review Board, but we were trying to clarify the legislation so that there would be no doubt, and I'm very sorry to say that that initiative was defeated by the Third Party. They refused to join with us in making that amendment; they refused to join with us in taking a step that would have encouraged the existence of a dynamic wind energy sector in Nova Scotia.

I'm very sorry that that occurred, that was a missed opportunity, and we will see whether, over the course of the coming years, this actually will discourage the existence of this new branch of enterprise in Nova Scotia, this new branch that will not just be to the benefit of us here in terms of seeing new local businesses established, but in terms of benefit to us in terms of good environmental standards, in terms of good human health. I think it is

[Page 5753]

entirely appropriate for us to have sponsored such an amendment, and entirely inappropriate for the Third Party to have stood in the way of the development of this. All the amendment would have said is take it to the Utility and Review Board and let them decide. That's all the amendment was going to say. It didn't say a price, it didn't say a rate, it didn't say a number. All it said was send it to the Utility and Review Board, the body with the expertise, and let them decide.

Mr. Speaker, I think it's important that there be a permanent public record, that when people come to read the history of energy development in Nova Scotia they understand who it was who stood in the way of this at this juncture in our history. With that said, I want to go back to say that Bill No. 87 takes very small steps towards opening up the renewables market in Nova Scotia. Taking small steps, moving into the competitive energy marketplace is appropriate; taking such very small steps with respect to renewables, however, is highly problematic. I would have preferred it if the minister had moved much more aggressively on this topic. (Interruptions)

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. The honourable member for Halifax Chebucto has the floor.

MR. EPSTEIN: Just for one more moment, Mr. Speaker, I have the floor. I would have preferred it if, indeed, the government had moved much more aggressively with respect to renewables. They do have the chance under their regulations to move aggressively and, indeed, there will be heavy scrutiny of what comes up in the regulations. We look forward to it. (Applause)

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

MR. RUSSELL MACKINNON: Mr. Speaker, I just have a few comments to make on Bill No. 87. Of course I would be remiss if I didn't remind the honourable member for Halifax Chebucto that this is a government-sponsored bill, so it would appear to me that if anybody was standing in the way of progress, it would be the NDP's siding with the government on many of the initiatives that have been put forth in a rather weak, somewhat fluid fashion.

However, my colleague, the Energy Critic, has pretty well focused on the overview of where we stand on this particular piece of legislation, particularly as it pertains to renewable energy. However, I wanted to flag this particular aspect of the legislation. It seems to be there in very subtle form, Clause 3(1) and (2). That's with regard to this plan by the energy company, in this particular case Nova Scotia Power, to be able to prepare its plan for the purchase and sale of energy.

[Page 5754]

The more I looked at these sections, Mr. Speaker, and I don't want to get into section by section because we are speaking on the title of the bill, but it does speak to this particular issue, I think in a very important way, and that is, this term that's been used in energy circles that's noted as being flow-through cost. I understand that this particular piece of legislation would allow the energy company to increase electrical rates without having to go back before the Utility and Review Board. Perhaps when the minister is closing his remarks, he will be able to clarify that. What I speak to is the fact that we have noticed in recent times the fluctuations and the variations of fuel costs in the marketplace. Much to do with international forces and the oil prices in the Arab countries.

Mr. Speaker, because much of the legislation is referenced to ensuring quality control through the regulatory process and that's the point where my colleague, the member for Richmond, has noted that we will be very watchful on this particular aspect of the legislation, I think it's important that all Nova Scotians be aware that the potential here for Nova Scotia Power to increase electrical rates without having to go back before the Utility and Review Board is a very important issue that has been overlooked in this particular piece of legislation, and it's not one that would jump out and someone would pick up on very easily.

When you read this, and I've read this on a number of occasions, and I couldn't get my head around it until I started speaking to some experts in the energy field, and they explained to me what this all relates to. If Nova Scotia Power Inc. has the ability to go and raise its rates every five, six months or every year, without having to give a full and detailed explanation before the Utility and Review Board, whereas other stakeholders, particularly the consumers or any other stakeholder for that matter, Mr. Speaker, does not have an opportunity to ensure that there is a full airing and a full detailed explanation of why those rate increases are forthcoming, then I think we are remiss.

I wanted to put that on the table, I think the minister is aware of the mechanics of what I raise. What I'm saying is that Nova Scotia Power in this legislation will have the ability to raise power rates without going back to the Utility and Review Board for full approbation. It will already be deemed as what they refer to as a flow-through cost. In other words, if a barrel of oil goes up 10 per cent, and Nova Scotia Power can say, that has increased our electrical cost of producing electricity by 10 per cent, then we can pass that on to the consumer without having to go back to the Utility and Review Board. I may be off on that. (Interruption) No, we don't want that to happen.

The other issue, Mr. Speaker, is with regard to the renewable energy issue. During second reading I took opportunity to flag with the minister, as well as the Minister of Environment and Labour and the Minister of Natural Resources, this ever-growing concern with regard to the proposed strip mine at Birch Grove. The energy strategy for the province as I've indicated, and it's in the Legislative Library, at no point in time ever makes any reference to this particular site. If we're talking about ways to improve our environment and provide electrical energy supplies at a very cost-efficient rate, we may get this coal very

[Page 5755]

cheap, but the cost to the environment, the cost to the community, the cost to the health and well-being of the community, will certainly outweigh any potential benefit.

Again, Mr. Speaker, I submit to the honourable Minister of Energy, the Minister of Environment and Labour, and the Minister of Natural Resources, and the entire government, that this is a policy issue that was adopted following the process that had already been outlined on this energy strategy. It should not even be on the table, and I would ask the ministers to give serious consideration to going back to the initial decision that was made in September 1984, whereby this project was rejected as a strip mine, and it was rejected with the full knowledge and detailed analysis from the Department of Energy at that particular point in time. I believe Mines and Energy was the department, and why all of a sudden it's now on the table to be included into this long-term energy strategy, is beyond comprehension. I know there are going to be some deliberations in the next number of days and perhaps weeks ahead with the respective ministers, the community, and myself too, I presume, and I know that this is a very serious issue.

There's not one home in that entire community that has a deep well. They're all surface wells, because once you go below the rock table, you are into salt water, and that's the reality, and any amount of blasting, or any type of damage to that strata, will create just massive complications, much the same as what happened in Reserve Mines, and that eventually resulted in the abortion of that project. So, with that, Mr. Speaker, I'll conclude my remarks and certainly, I'll await the minister's response.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Hants East.

MR. JOHN MACDONELL: Mr. Speaker, I'll be brief in my comments to Bill No. 87. I'm interested to see the government move forward on this piece of legislation, I guess, more to the effect that it's a step forward, even if it's a small one. I have some concerns around, not so much the avenue of opening up the market to bring in power from other jurisdictions. I think that as long as the mechanisms that oversee this - and I think in particular the Utility and Review Board - actually watch that the Nova Scotia consumers are protected in this regard and the fact that there is such limited ability for anyone to buy it, which actually, if anybody's going to buy power, it's going to be Nova Scotia Power or the six municipal units that are in the province presently.

I think the biggest concern I have is around the fact that the minimum amount of power to be produced from renewable sources will be determined by the government. I guess, like previous legislation that has come to the House, when you think that the government is going to take a positive step forward, you find it's an extremely minimal positive step, if it turned out to be positive at all. So the fact that it's not clear what that minimum amount is, that worries me, and also the fact that Nova Scotia Power's buying of power from renewable sources. I would think mainly as my colleague, the member for Halifax Chebucto, has stated, that more than likely that's going to be from wind energy.

[Page 5756]

[7:15 p.m.]

Mr. Speaker, if Nova Scotia Power is going to pay a tariff, or pay for its power from renewable resources and do that on a piecemeal basis, in other words it's not going to pay the same in all parts of the province, there's something you have to recognize about wind power. You have to put the wind turbines where the wind is. So, you know, I think if there is going to be a proactive movement toward reducing the emissions, particularly from coal in this province, we have to actually take a bigger interest in a way to do that that's going to have a significant effect in the short term rather than a minimal effect in the long term. I think a 6 per cent reduction under Kyoto is what Canada's commitment is, but there's no clear indication of what Nova Scotia's commitment is, or if they're actually committing themselves to a 6 per cent reduction - how they really intend to do that.

So, Mr. Speaker, I want to encourage the government to set real standards. I want them to actually set some incentive to bring the wind turbine sector ahead a little faster. I know for years New Democrats were criticized, told of tilting at windmills, because they were promoting a move to sustainable energy and windmills were a big part of that. Now we have entered into the 21st Century, we see this government coming forward with this piece of legislation which is such a small step toward that - actually it still means that we have to bring this government kicking and screaming into the 21st Century and actually ask them to take a look at what all the other costs of not doing this are and certainly in terms of impacts on the environment and on people's health. With those few brief comments, I want to encourage the government to do more and to do it more quickly.

MR. SPEAKER: If I recognize the honourable Minister of Energy it will be to close the debate.

The honourable Minister of Energy.

HON. CECIL CLARKE: Mr. Speaker, it's my pleasure to speak briefly to third reading of Bill No. 87, the Electricity Act. I do want to thank my honourable colleagues from the New Democratic and Liberal caucuses for their interventions, both in the House and committee and here this evening. A lot of the commentary that has been made has been taken seriously and under advisement as we move forward. As you know, with this bill, it does take an important step forward to ensuring Nova Scotians have access to a stable, sustainable supply of energy and it will take an important step towards nurturing our emerging green power industry in Nova Scotia, as well as allowing choice of supply for wholesale electricity consumers.

This was thanks, as was mentioned, in part to the work of the Electricity Marketplace Governance Committee and this bill, Bill No. 87, reflects four of those recommendations as we start. The other 85 to follow in the Spring of next year in a comprehensive Electricity Act will, I'm sure, provide for much discussion and something that we want to build on to ensure

[Page 5757]

that Nova Scotia has a fully incorporated and all-encompassing Electricity Act. I do want to note the concerns that have been raised and as we go through the rate hearing in November, we'll be very mindful of both the government's position, but also the impacts of that.

As we move forward, Mr. Speaker, we will be taking into account the basis of what this bill does and it will give us a starting point to measure the progress, to measure the response of Nova Scotia Power and the incidents that were referred to by my colleagues of concern when it comes to green energy and renewable supply generation. We'll be able to take stock of that and as we encompass those four in much wider legislation, if the concerns come into being, we can address those in that legislation in the Spring.

So I do want to note that we do, and we will monitor and I'm sure my colleagues will hold myself, as minister, and my colleagues to account. I look forward to having a full Electricity Act in the Spring of next year that will provide Nova Scotia with a very firm foundation. In that bill, as you know, we'll be looking at other green initiatives, other ways to incorporate the Kyoto Protocol, working with the Government of Canada in terms of supports for this province to be compliant but also to recognize the fact that Nova Scotians also need to have direction from our federal colleagues, and we'll look to have that in place prior to a full Electricity Act.

I do want to state that we are taking seriously all the comments that have been made. We look forward to reporting back in the House.

Mr. Speaker, with that being said, I'm pleased to move third reading of Bill No. 87, the Electricity Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for third reading of Bill No. 87. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

Ordered that this bill do pass. Ordered that the title be as read by the Clerk. Ordered that the bill be engrossed.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 131.

Bill No. 131 - Police Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Justice.

[Page 5758]

HON. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker, I'll speak only a very few minutes on this bill. This bill is a bill that will modernize policing legislation in Nova Scotia. It is a piece of legislation that has been worked on for a very long period of time and has involved what I would almost describe as massive consultation with the Chiefs of Police Association, the Boards of Police Commissioners, UNSM, the Police Association of Nova Scotia and other stakeholders in our justice system.

I wanted to draw to the attention of the House Mr. David Fisher, who is sitting in the Speaker's Gallery opposite, and who has been very instrumental in working with the government and members of the Opposition in the passage of this bill in a better state. I'd like to extend my thanks and that of the department to Mr. Fisher and PANS for their assistance.

I also should, Mr. Speaker, draw your attention and the attention of the members of the House to Lisa Jackson and Janice Brown. They are staff at the Department of Justice and have been particularly diligent. This has sort of been Lisa's project for a very long time, hasn't it, Lisa? They both deserve a tremendous amount of credit, particularly Lisa, for the effort they've put into this bill. (Applause) This is Ms. Brown's first session as the sort of chief legislative adviser at the department. As in all sessions in government, particularly a minority government, it's been a session by fire.

Mr. Speaker, I believe this is a good bill that will really enhance community policing, clear lines of accountability and will, I believe, stand as a model for police governance in Nova Scotia for many more years to come. Thank you to everyone who contributed in any way, to members of the Opposition for their support and with that, I move third reading.

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

MR. RUSSELL MACKINNON: Mr. Speaker, I just wanted to flag one small item on this particular piece of legislation. I don't want to get into it clause by clause. As the minister well knows, before this bill was introduced before the House, there was a draft piece of legislation that was circulated amongst the municipalities where, in Clause 35, there was a Subclause (4) which seems to have disappeared somehow, and that is with regard to requiring the Minister of Justice to sign off on the ability of any municipality to lay off municipal police officers.

That section, I thought, was a very important section to have in this particular Act simply because there could be the possibility of a municipality organizing its finances in a way that would perhaps not necessarily lend the weighted value to the policing service that's required.

[Page 5759]

Very difficult circumstances and issues have to be dealt with, particularly during some issues of fiscal and monetary restraint. The minister knows full well that the Cape Breton Regional Municipality has made submission without the full approbation of the council to have that section removed. For whatever reason, it has been removed. If that's the will of the Minister of Justice to alleviate his responsibility for ensuring quality policing services at the community level, particularly in view of the ever-increasing crime rates that are taking place in different communities of this province.

AN HON. MEMBER: The crime rate is going down.

MR. MACKINNON: The crime rate - we have the highest crime rates in this province east of the Province of Manitoba, and that is public documentation. (Interruptions)

Mr. Speaker, the NDP House Leader, he can speak for himself, I'll speak for who I believe I have an obligation to, and that's the people I represent.

AN HON. MEMBER: You. You.

MR. MACKINNON: Yes, he says me, well, that's fine and dandy, he's entitled to that opinion. Mr. Speaker, this is an issue I feel should be flagged. If that's the will of the Minister of Justice and the government, to allow it to go through, then so be it, but I do believe that it should be put on the table and not just simply bypassed without any proper discussion.

MR. SPEAKER: If I recognize the honourable Minister of Justice it will be to close the debate.

The honourable Minister of Justice.

HON. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker, I thank all the honourable members for their interventions and look forward to the passage of this bill. With that, I move third reading of Bill No. 131.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for third reading of Bill No. 131. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

Ordered that this bill do pass. Ordered that the title be as read by the Clerk. Ordered that the bill be engrossed.

The honourable Government House Leader.

[Page 5760]

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

PRIVATE AND LOCAL BILLS FOR THIRD READING

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 143.

Bill No. 143 - The Ladies Golf Association of Nova Scotia Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Justice.

HON. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker, I move third reading of Bill No. 143.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for third reading of Bill No. 143. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

Ordered that this bill do pass. Ordered that the title be as read by the Clerk. Ordered that the bill be engrossed.

The honourable Government House Leader.

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

PRIVATE MEMBERS' PUBLIC BILLS FOR THIRD READING

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 125.

Bill No. 125 - Mandatory Testing and Disclosure Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Colchester North.

MR. WILLIAM LANGILLE: Mr. Speaker, I'm pleased to rise on third reading of Bill No. 125, An Act Respecting Mandatory Testing and Disclosure to Protect Victims of Crime, Emergency Service Workers and Other Persons.

[Page 5761]

As you know, the front-line workers, the emergency workers, police, paramedics, fire officers and other front-line workers are at risk daily in their duties. This bill, what it does is require that a mandatory blood sample be taken, by court order, or not necessarily a court order, however, voluntarily, at the request of a person who has come in contact with contaminated blood from another person. This could be through a needle while searching a person, or, in the case of a paramedic, while performing their duties.

Mr. Speaker, I'm not going to speak long on this. This is a result of the Uniform Law Conference that was held in Regina in August, and this is legislation that they thought would be appropriate for the provinces to give uniformity across the province. At this time, there's only one province in Canada that has any legislation of this kind, and it is Ontario. They brought in their own legislation. With the uniform law, when they met at the conference they decided that because this is such new legislation, to make it uniform across Canada. When this bill is passed, this will be the first of the kind that the Uniform Law Conference has recommended. That was attended by all the provinces and the federal government, as well as the Territories.

With that, Mr. Speaker, I move third reading of Bill No. 125.

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

MR. DAVID WILSON (Sackville-Cobequid): Mr. Speaker, I just have a few brief comments on this bill. First of all, I want to thank the member for Colchester North for bringing this piece of legislation to floor of the Chamber. I think it's important, as elected officials, that we bring legislation to this Chamber that affects our residents and that will positively affect the residents of our province, and I believe this piece of legislation will do that.

[7:30 p.m.]

As I said before, in a previous debate on this legislation at second reading, it's not the first time I've seen this type of legislation. As a paramedic and a member of the Nova Scotia College of Paramedics, we have been fighting for many years to seek legislation like this on a national level, in Ottawa, Mr. Speaker. Our association, the Nova Scotia College of Paramedics is definitely behind changes in legislation that would allow mandatory testing in certain circumstances. This is a very rare case, that you might have to enact this piece of legislation. For the most part, most people in the province when they do find themselves in the situation where there's a potential for a transfer of bodily fluids, the patient or the victim can willingly get that sample from that person, but there are circumstances when they won't be able to that, and I think this piece of legislation will support our emergency workers, our health care workers in the province, because I think that's what we need to do here, when we look at legislation, is give them an added avenue for protection when they're doing their jobs.

[Page 5762]

I believe this is a "protection of workers" piece of legislation, and I say that because as an emergency worker or as a paramedic, which I will refer to, you're involved in situations that are uncontrolled, and in those uncontrolled environments is when the possibility of a transfer of bodily fluids can happen, and right now in the province those workers, I believe, don't have the rights that will allow them to, one, seek necessary treatment if there is a transfer in those fluids and, two, the peace of mind knowing that because they do their job, and the situation, the environment they find themselves in is dangerous, that they can go home and feel that they are protected at work when they find themselves in these dangerous environments.

Most of all, I think this will definitely affect the family members of many emergency workers, paramedics, firefighters, police officers in the province because, Mr. Speaker, as you're well aware of many situations you might have found yourself in over the years, that you don't know what has transpired, or what may have been transported to you in cases of medical emergencies or motor vehicle accidents, and you don't know what you're going to bring home to your family members. So I think by having this piece of legislation hopefully go through and be proclaimed as law, that you have another step to go to and, like I say, it's important in the early stages of any treatment to know what you're dealing with, and I think this legislation will give you that early step, the early intervention, to seek what kind of attention or medical treatment you may need.

I know that this also won't just affect. . .

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid has the floor.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Sackville-Cobequid): Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This piece of legislation won't just affect the people of our province. Far too often we find ourselves here in Nova Scotia, as a government, as legislators, on the back of the bus - if you want to say that - when it comes to changes in legislation that we see throughout the country, and I believe with this piece of legislation passing in the Province of Nova Scotia, we can be looked at as leaders when it comes to legislation that pertains to rights of our emergency workers and our health care workers across this country - because the Nova Scotia College of Paramedics have been working to try to get pieces of legislation like this passed throughout the country. The Paramedic Association of Canada has been working hard on behalf of tens of thousands of paramedics across this country to get implementation of legislation like this. So I think we will be seen as a leader and I hope that it will generate enough interest and flow across the country and even down into the States, and other States, other provinces will enact pieces of legislation like this.

In closing, Mr. Speaker, I just want to say that it will affect many people, not only the workers but, mostly importantly, I believe it will affect the family and give them and our health care workers peace of mind when they go home, knowing that they won't bring

[Page 5763]

anything home to their family members. Again, I'd like to congratulate the member for Colchester North for bringing this piece of legislation forward and I want to thank all members from the government side and the Liberal Party, and in my own Party who can realize this is a necessary piece of legislation. I think it will definitely affect many people in our province. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: If I recognize the honourable member for Colchester North it will be to close debate on Bill No. 125.

MR. WILLIAM LANGILLE: Mr. Speaker, I move third reading of Bill No. 125.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for third reading of Bill No. 125. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

Ordered that this bill do pass. Ordered that the title be as read by the Clerk. Ordered that the bill be engrossed.

The honourable Government House Leader.

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

PUBLIC BILLS FOR THIRD READING

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 110.

Bill No. 110 - Protection for Persons in Care Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Halifax Needham.

MS. MAUREEN MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, I think it's very important to recognize that what this bill does is it protects from abuse those persons who are vulnerable in our society, the elderly and disabled, who are often in hospital, in a home for special care, in a residential care facility. What this bill does is, it requires that people who manage these facilities protect and prevent abuse in the facilities. It requires that people who work and offer care to residents and patients in these facilities, report abuse when it occurs. It requires that the minister, in fact, investigate abuse where it occurs.

I know that some members of the Legislature have talked in the previous weeks that legislation, Private Members' Bills, coming from the Opposition - particularly the NDP caucus - have been fluffy pieces. I want to say very clearly here tonight that this bill is

[Page 5764]

anything but a fluffy piece of legislation. This is a piece of legislation that will, in fact, provide the kind of protection from abuse that our seniors and our disabled people and people who are at a very vulnerable stage in their lives require.

I'm very proud to see this piece of legislation proceed through this House and I would encourage all members of this Legislature to provide the protection to people in care that they deserve and need. Thank you very much. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Glace Bay.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Glace Bay): Mr. Speaker, I rise in my place to congratulate the member for Halifax Needham. (Applause) The member is quite right in that I have accused some pieces of legislation as being somewhat fluffy during this session. I'm glad to say this is not such a piece of legislation. I rise in my place to say that, indeed, the protection and prevention of abuse in facilities; people who offer care in those facilities, of course, should be able to report that abuse; and, of course, the minister should be obligated to investigate that abuse.

Again, I congratulate the member for having brought forth a worthwhile piece of legislation. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: I recognize the honourable member for Halifax Needham to close debate on Bill No. 110.

MS. MAUREEN MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, I move closure of this debate.

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

The motion is carried.

Ordered that this bill do pass. Ordered that the title be as read by the Clerk. Ordered that the bill be engrossed.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 130.

Bill No. 130 - Legal Profession Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Justice.

[Page 5765]

HON. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker, I will, again, speak only briefly to this.

First of all, I would like to indicate this bill is designed to modernize the legislation governing the legal profession of Nova Scotia. The former Barristers and Solicitors Act will be repealed and replaced by this legislation. This legislation has arisen as a result of extensive consultation over many years by the Bar Society which has attempted to draft a piece of legislation that modernizes matters with the legal profession. I would like to bring to the attention of the House, Mr. Darrel Pink, the Executive Director of the Nova Scotia Barristers' Society, and one of the chief architects of the drafting of this bill today. Mr. Pink has been very active, as one could imagine, in bringing this legislation forward along with various presidents of the Nova Scotia Barristers' Society, the most current of whom is John McFarlane.

Mr. Speaker, I believe this is good legislation which will serve the public and the profession well for many years to come and with that, I would move third reading.

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

MR. KEVIN DEVEAUX: Mr. Speaker, just briefly on this bill, I want to recognize the Barristers' Society efforts in this legislation. They have spent many years working on this. It's a lot of hard work. I know that Mr. Pink and Mr. McFarlane, whom I believe are here this evening, at least Mr. Pink is, I know for sure, will probably have a big sigh of relief after we have this vote and it's assented to.

As I said, there has been a lot of work done. I particularly look forward to the definition of practice of law which is a definition I believe that they took from the ABA, the American Bar Association. This will be one of the first, if not the first, jurisdiction to adopt this definition into legislation in North America and I will be watching very carefully to see how that's implemented and I wish them the best of luck.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Richmond.

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: Mr. Speaker, it's a pleasure to rise on third reading of Bill No. 130, the Legal Profession Act. This bill came forward as a result of a number of years of work in reforming and updating the former Act that governed lawyers in this province. As has been indicated before, the mandate of the society has changed. It's now quite defined as they are to protect the interests of the public in matters dealing with the practice of law. This was quite an extensive bill and it was one which I have raised concerns in this House and outside this House with the bill. One of the matters that did cause me some concern is the promotion of the use of the French language in the court services and in the administration of justice here in this province.

[Page 5766]

Mr. Speaker, I can tell you that although our country is a bilingual one where both official languages are recognized, the fact is that Bill No. 130 is presented to this Chamber in one language - in English. In fact, the only reference to the French language in the bill is a section that says that the name of the society can now be referred to as Le Barreau de la Nouvelle-Écosse. That's four words and they are the only four French words you are going to find in this bill.

Mr. Speaker, as a means of trying to encourage and fast-track the use of French language in our court systems, it was my belief that it was time for the Bar Society to give recognition to a group that has been in existence for some time. It's known as L'Association des juristes expression français de la Nouvelle Écosse which is made up of lawyers who provide French language services and who are interested in promoting the use of the French language in our court system. Too often our province, and this government, has been forced to react to court decisions which has been made to force them to protect minority rights and it is my hope that by having now the president of L'Association des juristes d'expression français de la Nouvelle Écosse as a member of Bar Council, which is the amendment that was agreed to by all Parties and the Bar Society, that this is going to give this organization more credibility and certainly a larger role to play in the establishment and in the reforms of our judicial system here in this province.

M. le Prèsident, je voulais juste dire quelque mots pour expliquer la moment qui a pris place à pros pos de la loi 130 qui est la projet de loi pour attablir le nouveau barreau de la Nouvelle-Écosse comme j'ai dit avant en anglais. M. le President, nous sommes toujours intéressé de promovoir l'usage de la langue français de nos systèmes de courts et de notre systèmes de justice içi à la province. J'etais content que de proposer amendement que le Prèsident de l'Association des juristes d'expression français soit aguter comme un des membres conseil de l'administration du barreau de la Nouvelle-Écosse. Au dèbut y a eu des diffèrentes negotiations qui a pris place sous ce projet du loi mais la fin je suis content que cet amendement a été accepté comme membre de L'Association des juristes d'expression français. Depuis le temps que j'ai eu terminé mon bach d'endroit, j'ai eu la plaisir de fait partir de cette organization et je pense qu'ils sont rendu au point maintenant que c'est la temps pour la barreau et pour nous, comme deputé, de les reconnaître leurs travailles et leurs efforts pour avoir plus services en français dans la système de justice içi à la province. Alors je suis confiant que dans les années à l'avenir que cette décision de faire l'amendment à ce projet de loi va être un decision positif pour la communauté françaises, la communauté acadien içi Nouvelle-Écosse.

Socialement l'effet que 2004 a été l'année du Congrès mondiale des Acadiens en Nouvelle-Écosse l'année qu'on a vu la governement a introduit projet de loi 111 pour les sèrvices en Français comme delivrer par gouvernement provinciale alors voici une autre ettape. Je prend la temps de cette occasion de remerci le President M. John McFarlane de Barreau de la Nouvelle-Écosse pour son travaille et toutes ses membres qui on participé de la développement de la projet de loi. J'ai suit bon chance avec la nouveau projet de loi et je

[Page 5767]

suis sûr que avec la moment qui a pris place comme j'ai dit avant que ce projet de loi sura là pour proteger les droits de toutes les jeunes en Nouvelle-Écosse et sa aussi donne un occasion de proteger et enrichir les droits des gènes français acadien içi au Nouvelle-Écosse. Merci M. le Prèsident.

[7:45 p.m.]

MR. SPEAKER: If I recognize the honourable Minister of Justice it will be to close debate on Bill No. 130.

The honourable Minister of Justice.

HON. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to move third reading of the bill.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for third reading of Bill No. 130. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

Ordered that the bill do pass. Ordered that the title be as read by the Clerk. Ordered that the bill be engrossed.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 138.

Bill No. 138 - Trade Union Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Colchester North.

MR. WILLIAM LANGILLE: Mr. Speaker, I'll be speaking a few minutes on this bill, because I believe that it is such an important bill for the people, the citizens, the public and the legislators of Nova Scotia. I want to start out by saying, the Oxford Dictionary, gives a definition for an oath. The short version is "a solemn declaration or understanding naming God or a revered object as witness". I'm just bringing that to your attention because when a police officer takes the oath of office, he is one of the main people that people see and rely on. When he or she takes that oath, what they do in their oath is they say that they will enforce all laws in an unbiased manner, and serve and protect the public. Having been a police officer in Nova Scotia, actually in Cape Breton, also Prince Edward Island and Ontario, I believe, for 30 years as a police officer, I have a good understanding.

[Page 5768]

Mr. Speaker, Nova Scotia is the only province in Canada that has the right to strike. If that is the case, when a police officer has the right to strike, then at the end of their oath when they say that they will serve and protect the public, they ought to include "except when I'm on strike". I don't believe anywhere in Nova Scotia that that wording is there. This has not been done without consulting the parties involved, and I'm talking about the police.

It first came to my attention nine months ago that the Police Association of Nova Scotia who provides policing service for a lot of small municipalities - Mr. Speaker, if I could introduce a person tonight in the gallery, Mr. Dave Fisher, the solicitor for the Police Association of Nova Scotia. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: We certainly welcome Mr. Fisher to the gallery today. We know that he is well-known by all police officers across this province, and welcome here tonight, Mr. Fisher.

The honourable member for Colchester North.

MR. LANGILLE: Mr. Speaker, as a former police officer, yourself, you understand the police, and you understand strikes. I know I was not in Nova Scotia when the police were on strike in the past, but I remember watching national television, and I remember Halifax in particular. I remember across from the police station the members standing at night with their placards, and there's the RCMP in here assisting with the police because at that time, you have to realize, that the constables and NCOs - and the NCOs were corporals, sergeants and staff sergeants - didn't have that right, they weren't on strike, but they were policing the city along with the RCMP because the RCMP had to be called in.

Mr. Speaker, I just want to say at that time the peninsula of Halifax was smaller. I know there are people in the House tonight, and I wish they would correct me if I'm wrong, but at that time I believe Halifax had a population of approximately 85,000. Now, you had Bedford with their own police and I'm not even sure if they had it at that time, but you had the RCMP and I believe that they policed everything from Dutch Village Road and the counties. However, the police at that time, being the police in the county, the RCMP, and every police force from the HRM at that time, which was Halifax, and as you know, with a smaller force at that time, when they went on strike, it was easier for the municipality to call the RCMP in to assist the strike.

Mr. Speaker, time has changed and we ought to change with those times. I look at HRM now and now they have 450 officers. In fact, they encompass not only Fairview, Sackville, Rockingham, Bedford and Dartmouth, they have encompassed that whole area and they have become the Halifax Regional Municipality.

[Page 5769]

Mr. Speaker, if I may, looking at that size of a force of 450 members, now that's 450 compared to the small area they had before, and I believe that the RCMP have approximately 691 members in the Province of Nova Scotia. Now, if the HRM goes on strike, the RCMP, who by the way police the rest of the HRM, that you have two police forces here now, the RCMP and the one in the HRM; one does not have the right to strike, the other has the right to strike. Where I'm going with this is the RCMP, because of the way policing is set up in Nova Scotia now, that every municipality in Nova Scotia pays for the RCMP - that means Colchester, Inverness, Guysborough, Cumberland, Kings, Yarmouth, whatever.

Mr. Speaker, if the HRM were to go on strike, you could not be covered by another police force, there are not the numbers involved because somebody from Yarmouth is not going to be subject to their right to law and order, their right to protection, to come into Halifax to protect their citizens when they are on strike.

Mr. Speaker, for that reason, because all the municipalities pay for the police - in fact, I have to say that here in Nova Scotia, the government does not pay very much for policing. They have their highway patrol they pay for, their commercial crime, and also a few other members of the RCMP they pay for. So it's actually the municipalities that pay for the RCMP under contract to the municipality and a lot of people don't know that. So you just can't take, in a strike, members from a municipality, give up their right to their peace and public safety, and put them in the HRM. I'm zeroing in on the HRM because they're the biggest force. So, therefore, that is one of the reasons.

The other is police pride, too. They're professionals, and they don't want to be on strike. With this legislation, Mr. Speaker, it gives binding arbitration, which is good for all parties. It's good for the employer and it's good for the employee. How can you speak out against public safety, or the right to have public safety in Nova Scotia? Last Wednesday, in this Legislature, we had 12 members from the Cape Breton Regional Police here, as well as other members of police forces from across the province, municipal police forces, Pictou County, Bridgewater, Cumberland County, in fact, your home town of Springhill.

Mr. Speaker, about 30 police officers came in, 12 from the Cape Breton Regional Police, all wanting to give up the right to strike. They want arbitration. I could go on. (Interruptions) Thank you. However, it's not very often I get up to say something. I felt that at this time what I said needed to be said. (Applause)

Mr. Speaker, I move third reading of Bill No. 138.

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

MR. DARRELL DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, I wanted to take a few minutes to talk about this bill, because I think it's an important one. It amends the Trade Union Act in a particular way, to do away with the right to strike and imposes, instead, a system of binding

[Page 5770]

arbitration. That is what the intent of this bill is. It was introduced by the member. Throughout this time, the position of our caucus has been that it was a bill that was brought forward by the member, with the apparent agreement of many of the police forces around the province. We agreed not to stand in the way of that legislation and, indeed, we have not. I think the member will agree that at each stage, we raised concerns when they were necessary, but we did not inhibit the progress of this bill.

I think it is incumbent on us at this time to lay out, in some brief detail, what it is that are the difficulties that we see in this bill, and that may create some difficulties, not just for the people that it's intended to benefit but for the government and for municipalities, as well. I'm going to start with the municipal units themselves. This is really a missing piece of the pie, with respect to this legislation, because the municipal units have not had an opportunity to comment on the bill.

As the Speaker knows, this bill was introduced at a time, and came to the Law Amendments Committee, right before the municipal election. There was little - I don't think there were any submissions at all on behalf of the Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities or any municipal unit. Those are the employers of many of these bargaining units. They had no input on this bill, whatsoever. They had no opportunity to offer their opinion with respect to it. I think that's a considerable shortcoming with respect to the way in which the bill actually moved through the House. I know that my colleagues in the Liberal Party have made it known on many occasions that they like full consultation, they want to see extended consultation on bills that come before the House. On this bill, let's be frank, there was little or no consultation beyond the stakeholders or beyond one-half of the stakeholders. That's the first thing.

That's just a concern that we have, and perhaps it will be that the municipalities will receive this piece of legislation, understand that they have had, as an employer, their ability to deal with their own employees shortened. Their ability to do that has become constricted. Maybe they'll say fine. I don't know. I didn't hear from them. I don't know if the members over there heard from them. I don't know if the members of the Third Party have heard from them. I only know we didn't hear from them, because they didn't have the opportunity to make presentations.

From the perspective of public policy, when you make laws that are going to affect people, they ought to have the opportunity to give input. I believe that's been the position of the Liberal Party in the past. I would hope it's the position of the government.

[8:00 p.m.]

Now the implication for trade unions. Well, Mr. Speaker, this is a bill that, in this particular instance, amends the Trade Union Act, and although it only affects a certain group of trade unions, in this case the police forces, it should be said that not all police forces are

[Page 5771]

in agreement with this legislation and, in fact, the very police officers the member spoke about have written a letter that said that they are in total disagreement with this legislation, that they find that it is likely going to do them more harm than good in the long run, that it's an infringement on a fundamental democratic right that they have as citizens of this country, the right to free, collective bargaining. That's what's being taken away from them, and they don't disagree that they're getting something in return, but they make the point that, as a matter of principle, what is being removed is an important democratic value. So I want to make that point.

You should know, Mr. Speaker, that taking away - and I know that a lot of people look around the province and they see members on strike and it inconveniences them when they're driving from one place to the other, we have the parks people on strike and some people couldn't get in and out of some of the provincial parks or federal parks, and that's an inconvenience, and they see them out there and they don't realize that the right to do that, the right to go on strike, the right to fair and full collective bargaining, which was something that in this province, as in many provinces, was paid for in blood, literally, and in Cape Breton, William Davis Day is celebrated, because at that time the Liberal Government of Nova Scotia decided to bring in the army in order to quash a strike, and William Davis died as a result of that.

In this province, as in many provinces, and I understand . . .

AN HON. MEMBER: That's terrible.

MR. DEXTER: He says it's terrible. I'm not sure what he's complaining about. That is, in fact, what happened; that's an historical fact. So, Mr. Speaker . . .

AN HON. MEMBER: You're playing politics with this.

MR. DEXTER: I'm not playing politics. I'm just telling you the truth. They don't want to listen.

AN HON. MEMBER: Trying to play both sides of the fence.

MR. DEXTER: I'm not playing both sides of the fence. I'm telling you the way it is. That's the way it is and, unfortunately, the reality is that trade unions had an important part in the history of this province and that's why they don't give up these things lightly. The reality is that the Nova Scotia Federation of Labour didn't tell us, didn't give us the benefit of their opinion at the Committee on Law Amendments, and I think that we all would have liked the opportunity to have a fuller examination of the matter - right?

[Page 5772]

Now, Mr. Speaker, I want to go back to one of things (Interruption) The member will have an opportunity to speak later and maybe we'll hear what he means by that. I have no idea what he means.

The implications for the police forces are this - and this is the important thing and I hope this isn't true, but I'm going to put it out there anyway, because I believe that in years to come one of the problems that's going to develop between the municipalities and the police forces is that when the municipalities no longer find themselves in a position to bargain collectively with their own employees, what they're going to do is they're going to replace those police forces with the RCMP. That's what's going to happen, you mark my words.

It's going to happen down the line, and so a well-intentioned, well-meaning piece of legislation may in fact be something that is going to be very problematic for the very people that it was designed to protect. I hope that's not true. I hope that it accomplishes exactly the aims that the member has put forward in the bill, because I believe that the member for Colchester North brought forward this legislation - and I hope that it's supported by the Third Party - for the best possible reasons, for the best possible intentions, because I believe that's why they're here. I believe that's why they're going to support it.

What I'm saying very clearly is that our job as legislators is to ensure that every possible avenue with respect to every bill that comes before this House receives proper scrutiny, that we raise all the possibilities for consideration by the government and by all the members here. That's our job, that's why we're sent here, to ensure every piece of legislation that comes through the House receives the full scrutiny of the members.

I raise these concerns for the consideration of the government, for the consideration of the members and ask whether or not they believe this is the best possible public policy for this province. If it is, then they should vote in favour of it. I'll leave you with those thoughts this evening. Thank you.

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

MR. MANNING MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, first I want to congratulate the member for Colchester North for bringing this bill to the House in the past few days. The Leader of the NDP states that he would like to see this bill proceed for the best possible reasons. I think that's what is happening here.

It's a bill that gives the right of employees to choose. (Interruption) This is what we're dealing with here. The employees on the CBRM - somebody over there said, no, it isn't. Well, I beg to differ. The police officers of the CBRM, to a man, want this bill on the floor of this House and want it passed. I believe it's their right to choose, notwithstanding anything that the Official Opposition might want to talk about in the Trade Union Act.

[Page 5773]

It's about the right of an employee in this province to choose. I can tell you that I speak with some authority on this from my previous life as mayor in Sydney when we had labour troubles from time to time. In those days, the police had to agonize about their duty to the people that they served - the persons and property of that municipality - or to their loyalty to their union brothers who would be out on strike.

In the municipality of the former City of Sydney, we had police officers in the same bargaining unit as outside and inside workers, all directed by different locals of the same union. When one local would be out on strike, the police officers were asked by that local to respect their picket lines. They found it very difficult to do their job on the oath they took to protect people and property in that municipality because of the need to respect their union brothers' position and their loyalty to their union as well.

The CBRM police, who I'm most familiar with, have decided to put duty first. They've decided that they do not want to work under the threat of strike anymore in their professional careers. What they want is to be able to get on with the job of protecting persons and property without having to constantly worry about a breakdown in labour negotiations that would send them to the street. They just don't want that anymore.

I believe they have the right to choose. That's their democratic right and I don't think we should sit and judge whether or not somebody doesn't like that in the labour movement or somebody sees something changing in the labour scene in this province. If it's changing, it's because employees want it to change. I don't think there's anything wrong with that. Those people who want to remain in bargaining units and have the right to strike, fine. I have no problem with that.

But those employees such as police officers who do not want to be labouring in their professions with the threat of strike, have rights also. They have rights. They chose to give up their right to strike and I believe that, to a man - to a person, I should say, in the regional municipality in Sydney - that they have made a decision that they feel is in their best interest. In representing that area, I certainly think that if they are willing to do that, then I have to respect that. I know my colleagues on all sides of the House would certainly respect a person's right to determine whether or not they want to belong to a bargaining unit that has the right to strike or do they want to be involved with compulsory arbitration.

I don't know what's going to happen in the future regarding municipal relations with their police departments. But I do know this - police officers were in fear that if a strike did occur, the same logic that the Leader of the NDP used, that if they had compulsory arbitration, the municipality might move towards bringing the RCMP in if they found it untenable.

[Page 5774]

The same is true, Mr. Speaker, if the local police force were allowed to go out on strike, then immediately the municipality could bring in the RCMP and then go to their people and say, see, we brought in the RCMP and they've done a pretty good job, we should rethink employing RCMP. I think, and I'll take my place after this statement, the Cape Breton Regional Police is a truly professional police force, well-trained individuals on that force, and deserve to have the same kind of respect that any group would have. They chose not to strike anymore and I, for one, am going to respect that.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Cape Breton West. (Interruption)

MR. RUSSELL MACKINNON: Mr. Speaker, the member for Timberlea-Prospect can leave if he wishes, that's his prerogative.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. The honourable member for Cape Breton West knows full well it's not acceptable in this House to acknowledge the presence or absence of members.

The honourable member for Cape Breton West, please, on Bill No. 138.

MR. MACKINNON: It's important that all members of this House support this particular piece of legislation. It's a piece of legislation that was introduced in 1999 by the member for Lunenburg West who, at that time, was on this side of the floor. Mr. Speaker, as you well know, you were a member of the caucus at that time when a private members' bill was introduced at that particular point in time. Earlier in this session our caucus introduced essentially the same piece of legislation asking for binding arbitration. So what we're seeing here is a culmination of a collective effort over a five-year period.

So I think it's highly inappropriate, Mr. Speaker, for anyone, any stakeholder, including the Leader of the Opposition, to suggest that there hasn't been sufficient opportunity for consultation on this particular piece of legislation because it has been five years in the making. It has been five years in the making and by the very fact that the letter that was submitted to the Law Amendments Committee by Pink Green and Larkin on behalf of the police union, MAPP, indicating their opposition to it, indicated quite clearly that they've had sufficient opportunity to examine this particular piece of legislation which has been on the books since 1999. Now, if five years isn't sufficient time for any stakeholder to have an opportunity to voice his or her opinion, then how long does it take?

This is the same Leader of the Opposition who not more than half an hour ago stood up and supported Bill No. 131, the Police Act, with essentially the same level of concentration and participation, both at the introduction of the bill, second reading of the bill, the Law Amendments Committee, Committee of the Whole House on Bills, and again at third reading. That particular bill, of which I raised a concern about the provincial government, the Department of Justice, alleviating its responsibility to protect policing services in communities

[Page 5775]

across this province, they accuse myself of advocating a personal agenda. Yet they will stand after considerable consultation and deliberation on this particular piece of legislation, for reasons who only knows, because it's well-known that the NDP went to great lengths to canvass people to come to the Law Amendments Committee and even when they failed at that, they're still complaining about a lack of consultation.

That's an old adage, Mr. Speaker, in this House, that if they can't get their way, then they'll say it's a lack of consultation. At some point in time we make a decision and we respect the powers to be - the police unions, all the stakeholders who have come in support of this particular piece of legislation, PANS, which is a fairly well-recognized and well- respected organization. The point has been very well made that this is the last jurisdiction in Canada to deal with this matter and for whatever political reasons, or whatever agendas that the Leader of the NDP or members of the Liberal caucus may have, that's up to them to answer to on a future day, much as the same as we'll answer for why we support this legislation. We believe it's excellent legislation, it's long overdue. It's too bad it wasn't successful, back over that five-year period. I congratulate the member for Colchester North for moving ahead in a very collaborative and co-operative and very open fashion to see this bill be realized for third reading today.

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

The honourable member for Colchester North.

MR. WILLIAM LANGILLE: Mr. Speaker, I close debate on Bill No. 138, and move third reading.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for third reading of Bill No. 138. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

A recorded vote is being called for.

Ring the bells to the satisfaction of the Whips.

[8:16 p.m.]

[The Division bells were rung.]

MR. SPEAKER: Are the Whips satisfied?

A recorded vote has been called for on Bill No. 138.

[The Clerk calls the roll.]

[Page 5776]

[8:18 p.m.]

YEAS NAYS

Mr. Clarke Ms. Massey

Mr. Morse Mr. MacDonell

Mr. Rodney MacDonald Ms. Maureen MacDonald

Mr. Russell Mr. Dexter

Mr. Hamm Mr. Steele

Mr. Baker Ms. More

Mr. Muir Mr. Parker

Mr. Christie Mr. Epstein

Mr. Fage Mr. Pye

Ms. Bolivar-Getson

Mr. d'Entremont

Mr. Hurlburt

Mr. Morash

Mr. Taylor

Mr. DeWolfe

Mr. Dooks

Mr. Chisholm

Mr. Langille

Mr. Hines

Mr. O'Donnell

Mr. Chataway

Mr. Parent

Mr. Deveaux

Mr. Manning MacDonald

Mr. Gaudet

Mr. MacKinnon

Ms. Whalen

Mr. Colwell

Mr. Gerald Sampson

Mr. David Wilson (Glace Bay)

Mr. Michel Samson

Ms. Raymond

Mr. Gosse

Mr. David Wilson (Sackville-Cobequid)

Mr. Estabrooks

Mr. McNeil

Mr. Theriault

THE CLERK: For, 37. Against, 9.

[Page 5777]

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is carried. (Applause)

Ordered that this bill do pass. Ordered that the title be as read by the Clerk. Ordered that the bill be engrossed.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, that concludes the government business.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please.

SERGEANT-AT-ARMS: Her Honour the Lieutenant Governor is without.

MR. SPEAKER: Let Her Honour be admitted.

[The Lieutenant Governor, the Honourable Myra Freeman, preceded by her escort, and by Mr. Noel Knockwood, Sergeant-at-Arms, bearing the Mace, entered the House of Assembly Chamber. The Lieutenant Governor then took her seat on the Throne.

The Sergeant-at-Arms then departed and re-entered the Chamber followed by the Speaker, the Honourable Murray Scott; the Chief Clerk of the House, Roderick MacArthur, Q.C.; Assistant Clerk, Arthur Fordham, Q.C.; and Assistant Clerk, Neil Ferguson.

The Speaker, with the Sergeant-at-Arms on his right and the Clerks on his left, took up his position at the foot of the Speaker's Table.]

SERGEANT-AT-ARMS: It is the wish of Her Honour that the ladies and gentlemen be seated.

MR. SPEAKER: May it please Your Honour, the General Assembly of the Province has, in its present session, passed certain bills to which, in the name and on behalf of the General Assembly, I respectfully request Your Honour's Assent.

THE CLERK:

Bill No. 71 - Theatre Nova Scotia Incorporation Act.

Bill No. 82 - Halifax Regional Water Commission Act.

Bill No. 84 - Motor Vehicle Act.

Bill No. 85 - Legion-Huston Property in Tatamagouche Act.

[Page 5778]

Bill No. 87 - Electricity Act.

Bill No. 90 - Highway 104 Western Alignment Act.

Bill No. 92 - Motor Vehicle Act.

Bill No. 93 - Gas Distribution System Municipal Taxation Act.

Bill No. 95 - Land Registration Act.

Bill No. 96 - House of Assembly Act.

Bill No. 98 - Municipal Government Act.

Bill No. 99 - Vital Statistics Act.

Bill No. 101 - Public Services Act.

Bill No. 102 - Maintenance Enforcement Act.

Bill No. 103 - Regulations Act.

Bill No. 107 - Prescription Monitoring Act.

Bill No. 108 - Chester Yacht Club Act.

Bill No. 110 - Protection for Persons in Care Act.

Bill No. 111 - French-language Services Act.

Bill No. 115 - Maritime Provinces Higher Education Commission Act.

Bill No. 116 - Liquor Control Act.

Bill No. 119 - Agriculture Administration Amendment (2004) Act.

Bill No. 121 - Motor Vehicle Act.

Bill No. 125 - Mandatory Testing and Disclosure Act.

Bill No. 127 - Pictou Regional Development Commission Act.

Bill No. 130 - Legal Profession Act.

[Page 5779]

Bill No. 131 - Police Act.

Bill No. 132 - Amusement Devices Safety Act.

Bill No. 135 - House of Assembly Act.

Bill No. 138 - Trade Union Act.

Bill No. 143 - The Ladies Golf Association of Nova Scotia Act.

THE LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR:

In Her Majesty's Name, I Assent to these Bills.

[8:30 a.m.]

[The Speaker and the Clerks left the Chamber.]

[The Lieutenant Governor left the Chamber.]

SERGEANT-AT-ARMS: His Honour, the Speaker.

[The Speaker took the Chair.]

MR. SPEAKER: Thank you. Please be seated. I just want to remind the honourable members that Wednesday morning, Nova Scotia Command, the Royal Canadian Legion will be here to present poppies at 11:30 a.m. Any members who are available, I know they would appreciate a good turn out if we can possibly do it. I understand the Premier will be here. They're really looking forward to being here to present those poppies again this year. Thank you for that.

I would ask all honourable members to please rise and join me in the singing of the national anthem, please.

[The national anthem was sung by the members.]

MR. SPEAKER: Thank you. Please be seated.

The honourable Premier.

HON. JOHN HAMM (The Premier): Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and to members of the General Assembly, I move that the Assembly be adjourned to meet again at the call of the Speaker.

[Page 5780]

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

[The motion is carried.]

MR. SPEAKER: Thank you. I'd like to thank all the members for their compliance during this session and I look forward to seeing all of you over the holiday season, which is soon.

We are adjourned, until the call of the Speaker.

[8:33 p.m. The House adjourned.]

[Page 5781]

NOTICES OF MOTION UNDER RULE 32(3)

RESOLUTION NO. 2965

By: Hon. Ernest Fage (Economic Development)

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

Whereas the Western Development Authority in the past nine months has been recognized as one of the top seven intelligent communities in the world; and

Whereas the Western Development Authority has been recognized for pursuing growth in our economy through broadband Internet technology; and

Whereas the Western Valley Development Authority was recognized by an Intelligent Community Forum in New York along with Glasgow, Scotland; Spokane, Washington; Taipei, Taiwan; Sunderland, England; Yokosuka, Japan; and the State of Victoria in Australia;

Therefore be it resolved that MLAs extend our appreciation to the staff and Board of Directors of the Western Valley Development Authority, for their determined spirit in wanting to make the Counties of Annapolis and Digby vibrant places to live and work.

RESOLUTION NO. 2966

By: Hon. Richard Hurlburt (Natural Resources)

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

Whereas students from Yarmouth Memorial Consolidated High School are once again reaching out to help with trick or treat celebrations in Yarmouth; and

Whereas the All Saints Program is being resurrected from what the students did in the mid-1990s as Halloween will be held on Saturday, October 30th instead of Sunday, October 31st; and

Whereas the students will offer a variety of services on everything from assisting children who might get separated from their parents in the dark to helping seniors open their doors and making them feel more comfortable from within the warm confines of their homes;

[Page 5782]

Therefore be it resolved that MLAs congratulate the students at Yarmouth Consolidated Memorial High School for wanting to offer such a service to their community.

RESOLUTION NO. 2967

By: Hon. Richard Hurlburt (Natural Resources)

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

Whereas Aaron LeBlanc returned from the National Canada-wide Science Fair late last Spring with a bronze medal; and

Whereas Aaron is a student from Maple Grove School in Yarmouth County; and

Whereas Aaron's project, set up as a board game, involved the use of brown and white golf tees referenced as rabbits and Aaron was attempting to have you figure out how to identify patterns and devise a mathematical formula to get them from Point A to Point B, regardless of the number of tees involved, whether there were five on each side or 50 per side;

Therefore be it resolved that MLAs acknowledge the creativity of students such as Aaron LeBlanc who are the students who will lead us into the future.

RESOLUTION NO. 2968

By: Mr. John Chataway (Chester-St. Margaret's)

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

Whereas Chester Save-Easy, after being recognized by Recreation Nova Scotia, is one of Nova Scotia's Building Healthier Futures Corporation; and

Whereas the Chester Save-Easy staff have always been actively involved in their community; and

Whereas besides allowing various community groups to sell tickets and raise funds, Chester Save-Easy has raised the most money for the IWK Children's Hospital out of all the Atlantic Superstores and Save-Easy markets in Atlantic Canada;

Therefore be it resolved that MLAs commend owners Danny and Joanne McCoul for their heartfelt contributions to the local community and wish them continued success.

[Page 5783]

RESOLUTION NO. 2969

By: Mr. James DeWolfe (Pictou East)

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

Whereas the Pictou County Ladies Fastball League recently held their season closing awards banquet; and

Whereas the league's Rookie of the Year was Beverly Foster from Thorburn; and

Whereas Thorburn also had the league's most sportsmanlike team and Edwina Palmer of Thorburn received the Krista Haughn Award for being the league's most dedicated player;

Therefore be it resolved that the Thorburn Ladies fastpitch team be congratulated on their various league awards and wish them every success as they go into the Winter, while thinking about the 2005 fastpitch season.

RESOLUTION NO. 2970

By: Mr. James DeWolfe (Pictou East)

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

Whereas Jenna Duggan and Lindsay Feit have hearts of gold, and they have recently shown family and friends just how big their hearts are, by wanting to collect change and donate it to children who are more in need in the Dominican Republic; and

Whereas both Jenna and Lindsay are students at the Thorburn Consolidated School; and

Whereas the girls first had the idea of donating this money to children in need when they came across a large collection of pennies while playing at Jenna's house one afternoon;

Therefore be it resolved that MLAs commend Jenna and Lindsay for their thoughtfulness and wish them continued success in the future.

[Page 5784]

RESOLUTION NO. 2971

By: Hon. Christopher d'Entremont (Acadian Affairs)

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

Whereas the Vignettes Jeunes Entrepreneurs Francophones program promotes entrepreneurship with francophone youth aged 15 to 29, who reside in francophone communities in Atlantic Canada; and

Whereas Ms. Pierrette d'Entremont, age 29, who has Tourette's syndrome is an example of passion, patience and determination; and

Whereas Ms. d'Entremont established her own business, Pierrette d'Entremont Jewellery Designs, in 2000, in West Pubnico;

Therefore be it resolved that this House recognize Ms. Pierrette d'Entremont, who despite her condition, contributes in a significant way to the economic growth of her community.

À une date ultérieure, j'ai l'intention de proposer l'adoption de la résolution suivante:

Attendu que le projet Vignettes Jeunes Entrepreneurs Francophones sert à promouvoir l'entrepreneuriat auprès de jeunes francophones âgés de 15 à 29 ans qui résident dans les communautés francophones des Provinces atlantiques; et

Attendu que Madame Pierrette d'Entremont, aujourd'hui âgée de 29 ans, est un exemple de passion, de patience et de détermination en raison de sa condition personnelle ayant le syndrome de Tourette; et

Attendu que Madame d'Entremont a lancé sa propre entreprise, Pierrette d'Entremont Jewellery Designs, en 2000, à Pubnico-Ouest;

Qu'il soit résolu que cette Chambre reconnaise, que malgré sa condition, Madame Pierrette d'Entremont contribue de façon significative à l'essor économique de la communauté.

[Page 5785]

RESOLUTION NO. 2972

By: Mr. Michel Samson (Richmond)

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

Whereas Matthew Hill of Janvrin's Island has been named to the Canada Games Core Wrestling Team; and

Whereas Hill is a 15-year old youth who is a member of the Richmond Academy wrestling program; and

Whereas being selected as a member of the Canada Games Wrestling Team reflects hard work and dedication and is a tremendous honour and opportunity for any young individual;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Matthew Hill for being selected as a member of the Canada Games Wrestling Team and wish him every success in the future.

RESOLUTION NO. 2973

By: Mr. Michel Samson (Richmond)

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

Whereas on October 16th, voters in Richmond County went to the polls to elect their council representatives, which saw races in nine districts and one councillor acclaimed; and

Whereas the voters of Richmond County re-elected six councillors while electing three new councillors; and

Whereas municipal councillors play an important role in representing the concerns of their constituents while also contributing to the social, cultural and economic development of our county;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House extend their congratulations to the returning councillors, the newly-elected councillors, and thank those members of council who will not be returning for their many years of sacrifice and dedicated service to the residents of their district.

[Page 5786]

RESOLUTION NO. 2974

By: Mr. Michel Samson (Richmond)

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

Whereas on October 16th, voters in Richmond County went to the polls to elect their council representatives; and

Whereas the voters of District 9, Rockdale, Point Michaud, L'Ardoise once again called upon Steve Sampson to act as their municipal councillor; and

Whereas Steve Sampson has represented the residents of District 9 for several years and is recognized for his involvement in his community and his role as a community leader;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House extend their congratulations to Steve Sampson and his family on his re-election and wish him well as he continues to provide experienced, effective representation for the residents of District 9.

RESOLUTION NO. 2975

By: Mr. Michel Samson (Richmond)

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

Whereas on October 16th, voters in Richmond County went to the polls to elect their council representatives; and

Whereas the voters of District 4, Janvrin's Island, Port Royal and West Arichat turned to Alvin Martell as their new councillor; and

Whereas Alvin Martell has a long history of community involvement, especially in the field of community economic development;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House extend their congratulations to Alvin Martell, his wife Brenda and his children on his election, and wish him well as he undertakes his new duties as the municipal councillor for District 4.

[Page 5787]

RESOLUTION NO. 2976

By: Mr. Michel Samson (Richmond)

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

Whereas October 16th, voters in Richmond County went to the polls to elect their council representatives; and

Whereas the voters of District 2, Petit-de-Grat, Boudreauville, Alderney Point and Little Anse turned to John Boudreau as their new councillor; and

Whereas John Boudreau is a retired teacher and long-time community activist, especially in the area of community economic development;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House extend their congratulations to John Boudreau, his wife, Viola and his children on his election, and wish him well as he undertakes his new duties as the municipal councillor for District 2.

RESOLUTION NO. 2977

By: Mr. Wayne Gaudet (Leader of the Liberal Party)

M. le Président, par la présente, j'avise que je proposerai à une date ultérieure, l'adoption de la résolution suivante:

Attendu que le conseil paroissial a récemment modernisé le musée paroissial à l'intérieur de l'église Sainte Marie;

Attendu que le comité a inauguré les salles Walter-Comeau et Paul Thimot, et;

Attendu que le musée fait partie de la démarche à conserver et promouvoir le patrimoine local et paroissial de la Pointe-de-l'Église à la Baie Sainte-Marie;

Qu'il soit résolu que cette chambres exprime ses félicitations et transmet ses meilleurs v�ux aux conseil paroissial et au comité du musée paroissial.

[Page 5788]

RESOLUTION NO. 2978

By: Hon. Kerry Morash (Environment and Labour)

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

Whereas 66-year-old George Fralic of Brooklyn spent nearly three months bicycling with the Cross Canada Cycle Tour Society; and

Whereas Mr. Fralic rode his bicycle from British Columbia to Newfoundland, and then back to Nova Scotia; and

Whereas Mr. Fralic made the journey in memory of his wife Patsy, who lost her battle with cancer in August 2003;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House recognize George Fralic for his incredible cross-Canada bicycle journey.

RESOLUTION NO. 2979

By: Hon. Kerry Morash (Environment and Labour)

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

Whereas Bowater Mersey Paper Company Limited awards three $10,000 scholarships each year to exceptional students at Liverpool Regional, North Queens Regional and New Germany Regional High Schools; and

Whereas the 2004 scholarship recipient at Liverpool Regional High School is Daniel Whynot; and

Whereas Daniel Whynot is now in his first year of a Bachelor of Science degree at Saint Mary's University in Halifax;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Daniel Whynot on being selected for the 2004 Bowater scholarship, and wish him the best of luck in his continuing academic endeavours.

[Page 5789]

RESOLUTION NO. 2980

By: Hon. Kerry Morash (Environment and Labour)

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

Whereas Bowater Mersey Paper Company Limited awards three $10,000 scholarships each year to exceptional students at New Germany Regional, Liverpool Regional and North Queens Regional High Schools; and

Whereas the 2004 scholarship recipient at New Germany Regional High School is Sarah Bolivar; and

Whereas Sarah Bolivar is now in her first year of a Bachelor of Science degree program at Dalhousie University in Halifax;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Sarah Bolivar on being selected for the 2004 Bowater scholarship, and wish her the best of luck in her continuing academic endeavours.

RESOLUTION NO. 2981

By: Hon. Kerry Morash (Environment and Labour)

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

Whereas Bowater Mersey Paper Company Limited awards three $10,000 scholarships each year to exceptional students at North Queens Regional, Liverpool Regional and New Germany Regional High Schools; and

Whereas the 2004 scholarship recipient at North Queens Regional High School is Chelsea Meisner; and

Whereas Chelsea Meisner is now in her first year of a Bachelor of Applied Science in Food Science degree program at Dalhousie University in Halifax;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Chelsea Meisner on being selected for the 2004 Bowater scholarship, and wish her the best of luck in her continuing academic endeavours.

[Page 5790]

RESOLUTION NO. 2982

By: Hon. Kerry Morash (Environment and Labour)

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

Whereas Graham Muise of Milton has broken the record for the Pythagoras Math Contest at John C. Wickwire Academy, scoring 45/50, outscoring the school's previous record by four points; and

Whereas the 2004 national average for the Pythagoras Math Context is only 23.98/50; and

Whereas Graham Muise is already a two-time winner of the South Shore Regional School Board's Mental Math Competition;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Graham Muise for his outstanding achievements in mathematics, and wish him the best of luck in his continuing academic endeavours.

RESOLUTION NO. 2983

By: Hon. Kerry Morash (Environment and Labour)

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

Whereas for the past 25 years, volunteers have raised over $0.5 million in the Hospital Hustle, including $15,000 this year; and

Whereas money from the Hospital Hustle is used to purchase items suggested by staff at the Queens General Hospital that assist with the care and comfort of patients; and

Whereas the Hospital Hustle Committee is always looking for new volunteers to assist with their annual event;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House recognize the continuing efforts of the Hospital Hustle Committee and encourage residents of Queens County to get involved with this important organization.

[Page 5791]

RESOLUTION NO. 2984

By: Hon. Kerry Morash (Environment and Labour)

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

Whereas the South Shore Big Brothers, Big Sisters Program is now in the fifth year of its in-school mentoring program; and

Whereas the Big Brother, Big Sister volunteers assist young people through a number of physical and recreational activities during school hours; and

Whereas programs such as in-school mentoring benefits students in many aspects of their lives, including academic, behavioural and social;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House recognize the efforts of the Big Brother, Big Sisters as they work to improve the lives of young people in Queens County.

RESOLUTION NO. 2985

By: Hon. Kerry Morash (Environment and Labour)

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

Whereas Bowater Mersey Paper Company Limited, located in Brooklyn, Queens County, manufactures 250,000 tons of paper annually in their state-of-the-art thermomechanical pulp plant; and

Whereas the mill was built at the mouth of the Mersey River at Liverpool Bay in 1929 and currently employs 400 Nova Scotians; and

Whereas for 75 years Bowater Mersey has been a model corporate citizen in this province, donating thousands of acres to the Nature Conservancy of Canada, and assisting private landowners through Bowater's Sustainable Forest Management Program for Small Private Forest Land Program;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate the Bowater Mersey team as they celebrate their 75th Anniversary in Nova Scotia.

[Page 5792]

RESOLUTION NO. 2986

By: Hon. Cecil Clarke (Energy)

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

Whereas the Cape Breton Search & Rescue Association celebrated their 35th Anniversary on Saturday, September 25th; and

Whereas members and friends of the association gathered together at the North Street Athletic Club in Glace Bay to commemorate their milestone and accomplishments; and

Whereas the members have dedicated their time to such a meaningful and worthwhile cause;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House join me in congratulating the Cape Breton Search & Rescue Association for their commitment and dedication to community service for the past 35 years and wish them well with their ongoing efforts.

RESOLUTION NO. 2987

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

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

Whereas the South Colchester Academy Wolves are the 2004 SCA Invitational Junior High School Soccer Champions; and

Whereas South Colchester completed their championship run with a 2 to 1 victory over East Wiltshire on Saturday; and

Whereas Trisha MacKay scored the winning goal with 15 minutes remaining in Saturday's game, which earned her co-tournament MVP honours with teammate and goaltender Chantry Stone;

Therefore be it resolved that all MLAs extend a round of congratulations to the hard-working South Colchester Academy Wolves on their 2004 SCA Invitational Soccer Championship.

[Page 5793]

RESOLUTION NO. 2988

By: Hon. Carolyn Bolivar-Getson (Human Resources)

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

Whereas today, October 18th, Canadians are marking the 75th Person's Day in Canada, in honour of the decision by the British Privy Council that women were qualified persons to sit in Canada's Senate; and

Whereas in the first part of the 1900s, five Canadian women took their cause to London, England, to argue their case in the highest court in Canada; and

Whereas today, women hold leadership positions in all aspects of public life, including the Senate of Canada and the Supreme Court of Canada, now the highest court in the land;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House mark Person's Day in Canada and join me in celebrating the many accomplishments by Canadian women, and especially Nova Scotia women.

RESOLUTION NO. 2989

By: Mr. William Estabrooks (Timberlea-Prospect)

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

Whereas the Holt family of Hatchet Lake have operated a legendary business on the Prospect Road; and

Whereas this family business has provided valuable service to our community while employing many young people for years; and

Whereas the Holts' positive suggestions and welcome advice are much appreciated;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate the Holt family for their hard work and dedication, with best wishes for a bright future in the years ahead.

[Page 5794]

RESOLUTION NO. 2990

By: Mr. William Estabrooks (Timberlea-Prospect)

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

Whereas Royal Canadian Legions play an integral role in communities throughout Nova Scotia; and

Whereas the members of Royal Canadian Legion MacDonald Branch 156, Lakeside provide valuable service; and

Whereas this active, involved Legion will again recognize our veterans and service members of the military on November 11th;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate and thank the Royal Canadian Legion MacDonald Branch 156 members on their continuing commitment to our community.

RESOLUTION NO. 2991

By: Mr. William Estabrooks (Timberlea-Prospect)

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

Whereas Royal Canadian Legions play an integral role in communities throughout Nova Scotia; and

Whereas the members of Royal Canadian Legion Atlantic Branch 153, Lakeside provide valuable service; and

Whereas this active, involved Legion will again recognize our veterans and service members of the military on November 11th;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate and thank the Royal Canadian Legion Atlantic Branch 153 members on their continuing commitment to our community.

[Page 5795]

RESOLUTION NO. 2992

By: Mr. William Dooks (Eastern Shore)

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

Whereas East Jeddore's Ted Germaine was presented with the Stompin' Tom Award this past February at the East Coast Music Awards; and

Whereas Ted Germaine has been involved in entertaining his community for years and has signed a record contract with London Records; and

Whereas Ted Germaine is most recognized for his compositions: My Own Prayer; Heavens Harbour; God is My Pilot; and Spinning Wheels;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Ted Germaine on his recent ECMA and wish him continued success in his music career.

RESOLUTION NO. 2993

By: Hon. Michael Baker (Justice)

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

Whereas the members of Voluntary Planning's Task Force on Off-highway Vehicles in Nova Scotia have spent countless hours reviewing a very complex issue concerning many in our province; and

Whereas after meeting with stakeholder groups, receiving input from participants at 24 community meetings, and having reviewed hundreds of written and verbal submissions, the task force has released its final report; and

Whereas the recommendations, now being reviewed by an internal government working group, will assist the government in addressing issues concerning off-highway vehicle use in Nova Scotia;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this Legislature recognize the efforts of Voluntary Planning's Task Force on Off-highway Vehicles in our province and thank all those citizens who participated in this public process, by providing input, so that we might secure solutions beneficial to all.

[Page 5796]

RESOLUTION NO. 2994

By: Mr. Ronald Chisholm (Guysborough-Sheet Harbour)

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

Whereas Guysborough's District 1 Councillor Norm Izzard was presented with the Bronze Award last month in recognition of 10 years of service; and

Whereas Norm Izzard is the first African Nova Scotian elected in Guysborough County; and

Whereas the Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities presents the Bronze Award to those who achieve milestones in representation;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Norm Izzard on his award and thank him for a decade of dedication and commitment to the Guysborough community.

RESOLUTION NO. 2995

By: Mr. John Chataway (Chester-St. Margaret's)

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

Whereas the farm has never left Cliff Dauphinee's blood or way of life; and

Whereas Cliff, who will turn 90 years of age in December, still manages to care for several cows and calves, a couple of hundred chickens, 100 pullets, some wild turkeys, a few ducks and some meat kings, which are chickens raised specifically to sell to restaurants; and

Whereas besides the inventory of livestock, Cliff also had time to look after 1,100 pumpkins which he grew and then harvested this fall;

Therefore be it resolved that all MLAs offer our warmest regards to Cliff Dauphinee, a resident of the Indian Point Road near Tantallon, who enjoys farming so much, that even at 90, retirement is not on his mind.

[Page 5797]

RESOLUTION NO. 2996

By: Hon. Ernest Fage (Economic Development)

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

Whereas the birth of any baby is a cause for celebration, but the birth of the first set of twins, Zoe Grace and her brother Thane William, in an Amherst hospital in 12 years is special; and

Whereas the hospital had been without the services of an obstetrician/gynecologist for over six years and this birth is a highlight for the obstetrical services; and

Whereas now the Cumberland Regional Health Care Centre has a full complement of obstetrical and surgical specialists in place allowing women to deliver their babies here rather than travelling outside of their area;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House join me in sending our congratulations to the proud parents Geoff and Evlynn McAloney and the Cumberland Health Authority for providing these ongoing services.

RESOLUTION NO. 2997

By: Hon. Ernest Fage (Economic Development)

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

Whereas the 2004 Economic Developers Association of Canada's 36th Annual Conference is being held in Sydney this week for hundreds of national practitioners of economic and community development; and

Whereas economic development practitioners are dedicated to providing competent and ethical service to the communities they serve in the field of economic and community development; and

Whereas Nova Scotia's community economic developers are leaders in the nation with numerous award-winning, groundbreaking accomplishments in the field;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House commend conference attendees for their dedication to community economic development, and congratulate the Cape Breton Regional Development Authority for hosting this successful national event.

[Page 5798]

RESOLUTION NO. 2998

By: Hon. David Morse (Community Services)

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

Whereas it is with regret that I inform the House of the passing of Dr. Shirley Burnham Elliott, of Wolfville, Nova Scotia; and

Whereas Dr. Elliott was an outstanding scholar, author, community volunteer, and Legislative Librarian for nearly three decades; and

Whereas Dr. Elliott received the Order of Nova Scotia in November, 2003, for her longstanding support to her profession, her historical research and her significant voluntary activities in Wolfville and beyond;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House send our sincere condolences to Dr. Shirley Elliott's family and friends, and let it be known that her generosity and strength of spirit will be greatly missed.

RESOLUTION NO. 2999

By: Hon. Rodney MacDonald (Tourism, Culture and Heritage)

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

Whereas the Strait Highlands Regional Development Authority is mandated to integrate and coordinate the activities of all local development groups and/or undertake activities itself to accomplish common objectives within its region so communities may build competitiveness and capitalize on market opportunities; and

Whereas the recent success of local economic development has included the establishment of StoraEnso as a world-class paper mill, the re-opening of the gypsum wallboard plant by Federal Gypsum Company, the success of the EDS Call Centre, and the ground breaking for a liquified natural gas facility; and

Whereas Blaine Gillis, Francis Gillies, Veronica MacDonald, Karen Malcolm, John Oulette and Tanya Felix are always prepared and eager to assist with opportunities for increased regional prosperity;

[Page 5799]

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House commend the Strait Highlands Regional Development Authority team for the role they have played in these and other important developments.

RESOLUTION NO. 3000

By: Hon. Rodney MacDonald (Health Promotion)

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

Whereas Nova Scotian paddlers took to the water in full force for this year's Canadian Sprint Canoe/Kayak Championships held from September 1st to September 5th at Dartmouth's Lake Banook; and

Whereas Nova Scotia has the culture, tradition, capacity and results, as well as an amazing legacy of athletes, coaches and volunteers, all of which make it possible to host many top regattas such as the Senior Worlds in 1997 and the upcoming Worlds in 2009;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate the Nova Scotia participants in the 2004 Canadian Sprint Canoe/Kayak Championships for their success and the example that they set for the youth of this province.

RESOLUTION NO. 3001

By: Hon. Ernest Fage (Economic Development)

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

Whereas Mansour's men's clothing store celebrated their 80th Anniversary on September 20th, the very date in 1924 that Mike Mansour opened the store on Church Street in Amherst; and

Whereas five generations of Mansours have worked in the store over the years; and

Whereas personal service and quality products have made the store one of the oldest and most respected businesses in the Town of Amherst;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House join me in sending our congratulations to the Mansour family and wish them another 80 years in business.

[Page 5800]

RESOLUTION NO. 3002

By: Hon. Ernest Fage (Economic Development)

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

Whereas for the first time in over a decade, the African Methodist Episcopal Church in Amherst has a full-time minister, Rev. Larry and Marsha Wilson; and

Whereas known to everyone in Amherst as Highland AME Church, which has a long and storied history dating back to July 19, 1877; and

Whereas this little church has been the backbone of the Black community for generations and will once again serve and welcome all who come to worship with them;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House join me in welcoming the Wilsons to Amherst and may the AME Church once again prosper.

RESOLUTION NO. 3003

By: Hon. Ernest Fage (Economic Development)

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

Whereas Rotary President Barry Helm received a Paul Harris medal recently; and

Whereas the award was established in 1957 to honour the founder of Rotary; and

Whereas this fellowship represents a donation of $1,000 U.S. to the humanitarian and educational programs of the foundation;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House join me in sending our congratulations to Barry Helm for this honour and his work with the Amherst Rotary Club.

RESOLUTION NO. 3004

By: Hon. Ernest Fage (Economic Development)

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

[Page 5801]

Whereas volunteers worked many long hours to raise the necessary funds to cover the cost of repairing severe erosion at a coastal cemetery in Pugwash; and

Whereas the volunteers began their mission in the Fall of 2003 in hopes of retaining headstones which were on the brink of washing into the Northumberland Strait and eventually raised almost $20,000 through pancake breakfasts, musical evenings, barbecues, you name it, while also garnering assistance from the W.B. Wells Heritage Foundation; and

Whereas Wells Foundation administrator Paul Mahaney was especially proud of the work undertaken by the Pugwash group saying, "The can-do attitude they have shown when faced with a very difficult situation stands as a fine example to all groups tending to such needs as the care of cemeteries";

Therefore be it resolved that all MLAs applaud the significant work undertaken by this Pugwash group of volunteers and wish them nothing but continued success.

RESOLUTION NO. 3005

By: Hon. Ernest Fage (Economic Development)

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

Whereas the Amherst Rotary Club is set to go with a five-year $100,000 project that will involve the purchase and upgrade of the former Knights of Pythias field; and

Whereas Rotary spokesperson Maurice Haugg said the Rotary Club's ultimate goal is for the field to be used by a wider variety of users, especially seniors; and

Whereas some ideas that have been mentioned for use on the land include a 400-metre track, a lawn bowling facility or a dog training space; and

Therefore be it resolved that all MLAs applaud the vision of the Amherst Rotarians in doing this significant project as part of their 70th Anniversary, and wish them every success.

RESOLUTION NO. 3006

By: Hon. Ernest Fage (Economic Development)

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

[Page 5802]

Whereas Nova Scotia companies have been taking advantage of increased export opportunities; and

Whereas Export Development Canada reported in September that Nova Scotia companies did more than $131 million in export sales in the first half of 2004; and

Whereas the 115 exporters saw $82 million in Agri-Food exports coming from Nova Scotia, with Atlantic Canada's two biggest exporters both coming from Nova Scotia in Northern Lights Christmas Tree Farms of Debert and Interhabs of Halifax, who are involved in the exports of pre-engineered Canadian houses all over the world;

Therefore be it resolved that all MLAs extend our regards to Nova Scotia's exporting companies and wish them nothing but continued success.

RESOLUTION NO. 3007

By: Hon. Ernest Fage (Economic Development)

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

Whereas October 19th and 20th marks the Nova Scotia Co-operative Council's Small Business Week Conference at the Annapolis Basin Conference Centre in Cornwallis Park; and

Whereas this conference is opening up one-half day of their two-day program, Wednesday afternoon, to the province's Supplier Development Program reverse trade show for vendors from Windsor to Yarmouth to Bridgewater; and

Whereas the Nova Scotia Co-operative Council, organizers of this conference, have worked hand-in-hand with the Office of Economic Development and regional development authorities to bring this opportunity to vendors selling to the public sector;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House recognize the value of partnerships like that of the province, the Nova Scotia Co-operative Council and regional development authorities, who are working together to support entrepreneurship and growing the economy in rural Nova Scotia.

RESOLUTION NO. 3008

By: Hon. Ernest Fage (Economic Development)

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

[Page 5803]

Whereas October 20th marks the official kickoff of the Tender Opportunities Notification Service whereby the Province of Nova Scotia is making it easier for companies to do business with the public sector; and

Whereas Nova Scotia business operators registered with the Nova Scotia Business Registry who take advantage of this daily service will be notified automatically by e-mail when tender opportunities are matched to their interests; and

Whereas, beginning today, the service is available at no cost through the Nova Scotia Business Registry Web site, and it will reduce the time it takes Nova Scotia vendors to collect and evaluate public tender opportunities;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House recognize the value of this joint initiative between the Office of Economic Development and Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations to Nova Scotia's vendor community under the province's Supplier Development Program, one of the government's policy commitments aimed at helping small businesses bid on public sector goods and services.

RESOLUTION NO. 3009

By: Hon. Ernest Fage (Economic Development)

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

Whereas the Nova Scotia Credit Union system is our largest financial co-operative with 800 staff and 169,000 member Nova Scotians in 84 locations throughout the province; and

Whereas credit unions are locally owned and managed with assets of $1.3 billion, and last year donated about $350,000 to community development projects and charities in their communities, while injecting over $3 million into local economies through renovation, construction and technology purchases; and

Whereas the credit unions, committed to our local communities, are delivering the Small Business Financing/Loan Guarantee Program in partnership with the Office of Economic Development to small businesses across Nova Scotia;

Therefore be it resolved that this House recognize the value of the credit union system to Nova Scotia and the economy, and congratulate staff and members as they celebrate October 21st as National Credit Union Day.

[Page 5804]

RESOLUTION NO. 3010

By: Hon. Ernest Fage (Economic Development)

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

Whereas Nova Scotia has over 400 locally owned co-operative businesses with more than 300,000 members/owners who work together to achieve their goals; and

Whereas the co-operative system employs more than 7,000 Nova Scotians and provides housing to more than 6,000; and

Whereas the co-operative industry is an integral part of the province's economic growth and a main driver for rural economic activity with approximately $5 billion in assets;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House congratulate Nova Scotia's co-operatives on their success, and wish them continued growth as they celebrate National Co-Operatives Week.

RESOLUTION NO. 3011

By: Hon. Ernest Fage (Economic Development)

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

Whereas the Congrès mondial acadien 2004 was a great success in Cumberland County with 3,500 people converging on the area for nine family reunions and the Acadian Mass; and

Whereas the key players, Charlene Tuttle from Creda; Cumberland County Congrès organizer, Dawn Smith; committee chair, Gerald Read; and family reunion organizer and mass committee member, Gord Hebert; and

Whereas these people were presented with plaques from the County of Cumberland for their contribution to the success of the Congrès 2004;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House join me in sending our congratulations to Charlene, Dawn, Gerald and Gord for this recognition of their contribution in making this event a memorable one.

[Page 5805]

RESOLUTION NO. 3012

By: Hon. Ernest Fage (Economic Development)

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

Whereas Mark Goodwin, Marc Buske, Bob Sperry, Raymond MacDonald and Mike Burke proved recently that Amherst has world-class firefighters when they attended the National Fire Fit Combat Challenge; and

Whereas they qualified for the world championships slated for Las Vegas in November 2004; and

Whereas they will continue to train and prepare for when the worlds return to Canada;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House join me in sending our congratulations to all members of the Amherst Fire Fit team.

RESOLUTION NO. 3013

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

Whereas the All-Saints helipad at the hospital in Springhill is in place and providing the necessary landing services for Emergency Health Services helicopter; and

Whereas the All-Saints helipad became possible after the All-Saints Foundation received money through an estate, with the helipad being the first item considered for the hospital; and

Whereas the EHS chopper has been a saviour for residents of Cumberland County, taking one gentleman from the woods with six broken ribs, and another woman from Fountain Lake suffering from a possible broken back;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House applaud the All-Saints Hospital Auxiliary, Cumberland County Health Vice-Chair Doug Marshall, CEO Bruce Quigley, and the many other individuals who have made the construction of this helipad such a phenomenal success.

[Page 5806]

RESOLUTION NO. 3014

By: Hon. Christopher d'Entremont (Agriculture and Fisheries)

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

Whereas this past Saturday, elections took place in the Municipality of Argyle, and indeed throughout the province; and

Whereas Mr. Eugene Doucette of Amirault's Hill did not reoffer; and

Whereas Mr. Doucette has served the residents of District 4 for 30 years;

Therefore be it resolved that this House thank Mr. Eugene Doucette for his years of dedicated service to the people of the Municipality of Argyle, and wish him well in his retirement from council.

À une date ultérieure, j'ai l'intention de proposer l'adoption de la résolution suivante:

Attendu que samedi dernier des élections ont eu lieu dans la municipalité d'Argyle, et effectivement à la grandeur de la province; et

Attendu que monsieur Eugène Doucette des Buttes Amirault ne s'est pas représenté aux élections; et

Attendu que monsieur Doucette a servi les résidents du District 4 durant 30 ans;

Qu'il soit résolu que cette Chambre remercie monsieur Eugène Doucette pour ses années de services dédiés aux gens de la municipalité d'Argyle, et lui transmette des bons v�ux suite à sa retraite du Conseil municipal.

RESOLUTION NO. 3015

By: Hon. David Morse (Community Services)

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

Whereas the week of October 17th to October 23rd is Foster Family Appreciation Week in Nova Scotia and the satisfaction of being a parent is only surpassed by those who open their homes and hearts to foster children; and

[Page 5807]

Whereas a copy of a poem called World of Wonders, written by a young person in care, has been distributed to all members of the Nova Scotia Legislature and is a heartfelt account of the emotions any child might feel when coming into care, and a great testimony to the effect foster families have on the lives of children and youth in care; and

Whereas Rick and Darla Wood, Robert and Doris Kelly, and Roger and Suzanne Sevigny, all of Kings South, are being recognized for five, 20 and 35 years of fostering respectively;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House extend their gratitude to these foster parents, and indeed all of the more than 700 foster parents in Nova Scotia, during this Foster Family Appreciation Week, and thank them for their caring.

RESOLUTION NO. 3016

By: Hon. Kerry Morash (Environment and Labour)

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

Whereas the Liverpool Baseball Club held its closing ceremony on Sunday, October 2, 2004 in the Liverpool Legion hall; and

Whereas Bill White was recognized with the Reg Cahoon Award for outstanding service to the Liverpool Baseball Club; and

Whereas at 81 years of age, Mr. White is still active in the maintenance of the baseball field, and has worked for over 30 years to help ensure the spirit of baseball remains alive in Liverpool;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House recognize and congratulate Mr. Bill White for being this year's recipient of the Reg Cahoon Award, and thank him for his timeless dedication to baseball in Liverpool.

RESOLUTION NO. 3017

By: Ms. Diana Whalen (Halifax Clayton Park)

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

[Page 5808]

Whereas the Shaw Group is a business success story in our province, having won many awards for progressive management; and

Whereas Allan Shaw, Chairman and CEO has recognized the need for succession planning to ensure the continued success and stability of the companies within the Shaw Group; and

Whereas in recognition of his management acumen and experience, Bert Frizzell has recently been appointed to the position of President and Chief Operating Officer of the Shaw Group;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House offer warm recognition to Mr. Frizzell and wish him every success in the future.

RESOLUTION NO. 3018

By: Hon. Richard Hurlburt (Natural Resources)

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

Whereas the Yarmouth Motor Mart Mariners continue their masterful success, not only on the ice but in apparel rankings as well; and

Whereas the Mariners' apparel is ranked as the eighth best seller of Canadian Junior A teams anywhere in Canada; and

Whereas the Mariners are off to a fast 10-2-1 start for 21 points and first place in this division, eight back of the second-place Amherst Ramblers in the Maritime Junior A Hockey League's Bent Division;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House applaud the management, executive, staff and players of the Yarmouth Motor Mart Mariners, for their excellent approach toward winning hockey, while also providing fans a product worth being proud of and buying, to make the Mariners' apparel such a top-selling item in Canada.

RESOLUTION NO. 3019

By: Hon. Cecil Clarke (Energy)

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

[Page 5809]

Whereas the Northside Youth Health Centre held an open house to celebrate their new location on Friday, September 24th at Memorial Composite High School in Sydney Mines; and

Whereas the health centre staff also provide outreach support to the three Northside junior high schools; and

Whereas Kim Lake, RN; secretary Nancy Devoe; Youth Health Centre Manager Mary Beth LeBlanc; Dr. Stephanie Langley; and Dr. Joan Salah help with students with health issues;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House join me in extending congratulations to these individuals who care for the health and well-being of our youth.

RESOLUTION NO. 3020

By: Mr. Cecil O'Donnell (Shelburne)

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

Whereas Barbara Conrad of Clarks Harbour is nearing completion of having served 31 years on Clarks Harbour Town Council; and

Whereas Barbara will welcome in the new council and end her tireless work on behalf of Clarks Harbour ratepayers in the next 10 days or so; and

Whereas Barbara first took her seat around Clarks Harbour Town Council back in 1973, while witnessing many different issues come and go, along with the technology being used in 1973 versus what is available today;

Therefore be it resolved that all MLAs offer our warmest wishes to Barbara Conrad of Clarks Harbour on her faithful and dedicated service to the Town of Clarks Harbour, and the taxpayers for the past 31 years.

RESOLUTION NO. 3021

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

[Page 5810]

Whereas serving the public as an elected official is not only an honourable goal for anyone, it is also the foundation for our political system; and

Whereas longevity in holding any elected position indicates at least a certain comfort felt by the voting constituency; and

Whereas John Henderson of Springhill, was recently awarded a plaque at a meeting of the Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities, acknowledging his 17 years of involvement with municipal government;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate John Henderson for his many years of public service to local government in Springhill and wish him continued success and health.

RESOLUTION NO. 3022

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

Whereas serving the public as an elected official is not only an honourable goal for anyone, it is also the foundation for our political system; and

Whereas longevity in holding any elected position indicates at least a certain comfort felt by the voting constituency; and

Whereas Ralph Mitchell of Springhill, was recently awarded a plaque at a meeting of the Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities, acknowledging his 13 years of involvement with municipal government;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Ralph Mitchell for his many years of public service to local government in Springhill and wish him continued success and health.

RESOLUTION NO. 3023

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

[Page 5811]

Whereas Kristopher Steliga, an 18-year-old graduating student from River Hebert High School, walked away from his graduation ceremony with more than $80,000 in bursaries, awards and scholarships; and

Whereas Kristopher not only graduated with honours, but was the recipient of two separate bursaries, received awards for achieving the highest math mark in Grade 12 and the fourth highest overall mark in his grade; and

Whereas Kristopher, who plans a career in the Canadian Navy, received the five-year Regular Officer Training Plan Military Scholarship, which was valued at more than $80,000;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Kristopher Steliga on these outstanding achievements and wish him continued success in the future.

RESOLUTION NO. 3024

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

Whereas Chief Warrant Officer Erica Steeves, from 1859 Springhill Army Cadet Corps, was appointed Chief Warrant Officer of Argonaut Army Cadet Summer Training Centre for the Summer of 2004; and

Whereas Argonaut Cadet Summer Training Centre was organized into nine companies to provide a safe and secure training environment for all cadets participating in Summer training; and

Whereas at the training centre, Chief Steeves learned to work in a large organization, to maintain relationships to ensure open communication, which will prove useful in her work towards a Bachelor of Business Administration degree at the University of New Brunswick, and also in the pursuit of a career in business;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Chief Warrant Officer Erica Steeves on her appointment at Argonaut Army Cadet Summer Training Centre and wish her continued success in her future studies.

[Page 5812]

RESOLUTION NO. 3025

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

Whereas a group of Springhill High School students got a taste of how world diplomacy works after attending the John Peters Humphrey Model United Nations at St. Thomas University in Fredericton; and

Whereas this is the third year that the school has participated where the students research the country that they are representing to learn about its foreign policy and the issues facing it, and then try to draft resolutions like at the real UN; and

Whereas some of the students who represented Springhill High School were Heather Hunter, Samantha Welsh and Jonathan Chapman, representing South Africa, Hayley Oulton as diplomat for Chile, Edel Ruiz, Kate McMillan and Andrew Peddle;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate these Springhill High School students for participating in the John Peters Humphrey Model United Nations, and wish them well in all of their future endeavours.

RESOLUTION NO. 3026

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

Whereas the Springhill Library helped occupy the minds of over 60 children over the Summer months with a reading club held every Thursday morning; and

Whereas the program began at the end of the school year and concluded at the end of August, with over 60 students participating, picking several books that they would like to read and making out a log sheet to keep track of their progress; and

Whereas children from the age of two, with a reading buddy, to the age of 12 participated in the program, reading and discussing their books with each other;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate the Springhill Library for running this very important and successful program that helps open and educate the minds of young children.

[Page 5813]

RESOLUTION NO. 3027

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

Whereas Frank Joseph White of River Hebert was the recipient of the Lieutenant Governor's Award for the Province of Nova Scotia; and

Whereas very few can claim being a recipient of this very prestigious award, which is given to students who show hard work, effort and dedication to their studies, community and family; and

Whereas Frank received this honour at the Lieutenant Governor's Awards Ceremony on May 20, 2004, in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Frank Joseph White on receiving this outstanding award, and wish him continued success in the future.

RESOLUTION NO. 3028

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

Whereas Charlotte and Larry Strathearn of Foodland in Springhill, Nova Scotia were presented the Vocational Service Award by the Rotary Club of Springhill; and

Whereas Foodland has shown great support to all the different volunteer organizations by allowing groups to sell tickets and set up raffles and draws; and

Whereas the Strathearn family goes above and beyond what they need to do with their community-minded efforts, and without their countless support, the local organizations in the area wouldn't be nearly so successful;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Charlotte and Larry Strathearn and the staff of Foodland on receiving this distinguished award, and thank them for their dedication and service to their community.

[Page 5814]

RESOLUTION NO. 3029

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

Whereas Brittani Purcell, a 16-year-old Grade 11 student at Oxford Regional High School, was crowned First Princess at the Cumberland County Exhibition; and

Whereas Brittani is interested in a career in marine biology after she graduates; and

Whereas the Miss Cumberland 2004 pageant was held on August 30th with participants from different towns and villages over Cumberland County;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Brittani on being crowned First Princess at the Cumberland County Exhibition, and wish her all the best in the future.

RESOLUTION NO. 3030

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

Whereas Dave Quigley, a 15-year-old golfer, took home his first Amherst Golf Club Junior Championship title; and

Whereas Dave came on strong on Saturday with a minus-two-par 69 and a seven-shot lead going into Sunday's round; and

Whereas Dave, who has been in 12 tournaments and has played against 31 competitors in the junior championship, finished with a final two-day score of 127;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Dave Quigley on this outstanding achievement, and wish him many more wins in the years to come.

[Page 5815]

RESOLUTION NO. 3031

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

Whereas Allison Rector of Oxford Junction participated in several classes at the Annual Sackville Music Festival at Mount Allison University; and

Whereas Allison participated in the Oratorio Grade 10-12 Canadian Art Song, Vocal Provincial, Musical Theatre Solo, Jazz/Pop Solo and Composed Song and Folk Style; and

Whereas Allison received marks ranging between 85 and 87, which is considered very good;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Allison Rector on these outstanding achievements, and wish her continued success in the future.

RESOLUTION NO. 3032

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

Whereas Gina Reid, an Advocate native, continues the great tradition of star athletes coming out of this Cumberland County community; and

Whereas Gina, a striker, was named to the Soccer Nova Scotia Under-13 Girls Provincial Team, which will play in an Atlantic championship tournament in July 2005 in Newfoundland; and

Whereas Gina, who has always played hard, also played for Advocate District High on the school's senior soccer team last year as a striker where she was second-leading scorer with 12 goals;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Gina Reid on being named to the Soccer Nova Scotia Under-13 Girls Provincial Team, and wish her continued success in the future.

[Page 5816]

RESOLUTION NO. 3033

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

Whereas River Hebert Elementary School teachers and students are proud of the valuable contribution they make each year to the Terry Fox Foundation; and

Whereas all money raised for the foundation helps to find a cure for the disease that forced Fox to end his Marathon of Hope, and for the fourth year in a row these students participated in a Terry Fox walk to raise funds for the foundation; and

Whereas this year the students at the River Hebert Elementary School raised over $2,000;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate the River Hebert Elementary School students and teachers on their dedication and hard work to raise monies for such an important cause, and wish them continued success in the future.

RESOLUTION NO. 3034

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

Whereas the River Hebert Lady Raiders picked up the Division 3 Silver Medal in Senior Girls Slo-pitch at the NSSAF Provincials held in Halifax; and

Whereas members of the team include Jillian Jewitt, Nikita White, Melissa Roberts, Stephanie Mawdsley and Heather Porter; and

Whereas also included in this group are Holly Porter, Chelsey Cyr, Miranda Wolfe, Brittaney Dorrington, Megan Terrio, Megan Downey, Amanda Jones, Amanda Mills and Kristin Wolfe;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate the River Hebert Lady Raiders on this outstanding achievement, and wish them continued success in the future.

[Page 5817]

RESOLUTION NO. 3035

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

Whereas Sherri Rushton, a Nova Scotia Community College student from Cumberland Campus in Springhill, was awarded financial aid with the Cumberland Freemason's Adult Bursary; and

Whereas under the direction of the District Deputy Grand Master for Cumberland District, R.W. Bro. Allan J. White, the nine Cumberland District Masonic Lodges, in a joint program with the Nova Scotia Masonic Foundation, were able to award a $1,000 bursary to a deserving adult student at the Cumberland Campus; and

Whereas Sherri, a student in the Adult Learning Program, was chosen to receive this bursary from the Freemasons;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Sherri Rushton on receiving this bursary, and wish her success in all her future endeavours.

RESOLUTION NO. 3036

By: Hon. Murray Scott (Speaker)

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

Whereas Scotiabank Oxford employees and Scotiabank itself continue to be strong supporters of local organizations with ongoing fundraising events; and

Whereas the latest donation of $2,614.46 went to the Oxford Regional Elementary School Mini Girls and Boys Basketball Program; and

Whereas the money will be used for new team jerseys and a new digital time clock for home games;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Scotiabank Oxford employees for their donation to the Oxford Elementary School Mini Girls and Boys Basketball Program, and wish them all the best in the future.

[Page 5818]

RESOLUTION NO. 3037

By: Mr. Mark Parent (Kings North)

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

Whereas the Farmhouse Inn, in Canning, has been named a "Fodor's Choice" property in the 2004 edition of the Fodor's Travel Guide for the Atlantic Provinces; and

Whereas the designation is based on quality and price of accommodations and recognizes the value that guests receive overall; and

Whereas innkeepers Doug and Ellen Bray welcome guests from all over the world, and it is their hospitality that draws people back time and time again;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Doug and Ellen Bray on their recent designation, and wish them many more years of success.

RESOLUTION NO. 3038

By: Mr. Mark Parent (Kings North)

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

Whereas John Ferguson of Port Williams joined the Nova Scotia delegation at the 10th annual National Historica Fair held in Montreal, Quebec this past July; and

Whereas 165 students from across Canada displayed their history projects at the National Historica Fair; and

Whereas John Ferguson's project was on the Yukon Gold Rush, describing the environment, hardships and excitement of the gold rush;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate John Ferguson on his successful display at the National Historica Fair, and wish him future success in his studies.

[Page 5819]

RESOLUTION NO. 3039

By: Mr. Mark Parent (Kings North)

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

Whereas Woodville's Brad Carty is officially Atlantic Canada's strongest man after winning the Strongman Competition held in Summerside, P.E.I., on June 14th; and

Whereas Brad Carty, having defeated 11 competitors, advanced to the national competition in Gatineau, Quebec, where he placed fifth overall in Canada; and

Whereas local competitions in the Valley, such as Heart of the Valley Days in Middleton and Berwick Gala Days, also host strongman competitions that Brad Carty performs in;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Brad Carty and all of the other competitors in the local and national strongman event, and wish him continued success.

RESOLUTION NO. 3040

By: Mr. Mark Parent (Kings North)

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

Whereas Dr. Kenneth McRae, a 30-year veteran of the Atlantic Food and Horticultural Centre in Kentville, has been designated as the first professionally accredited statistician by the Statistical Society of Canada; and

Whereas Dr. McRae's recognized area of expertise is in the area of agriculture and food research; and

Whereas this designation is the highest standard of professional competence in understanding and applying statistical methods;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Dr. McRae on his research and dedication to the Kentville Research Centre, and wish him continued success in his future endeavours.

[Page 5820]

RESOLUTION NO. 3041

By: Mr. Mark Parent (Kings North)

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

Whereas Kingstec Campus in Kentville has awarded Charlotte States the Support Staff Excellence Award, the highest award given by the Nova Scotia Community College for operational support; and

Whereas Charlotte States has been employed by the college for 28 years as the human resources assistant and administrative assistant to the principal; and

Whereas Charlotte States was also the first African Atlantic Canadian to be elected to the position of District Mission President for Atlantic Canada by the Church of the Nazarene in 2000;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Charlotte States on her award and for her dedication to the Nova Scotia Community College, her community and the Church of the Nazarene.

RESOLUTION NO. 3042

By: Mr. Mark Parent (Kings North)

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

Whereas Gaspereau Press, established in 1997 by Gary Dunfield and Andrew Steeves, will hold its 5th annual wayzgoose weekend from October 22nd to the 24th; and

Whereas events will include a book arts lecture, a printmaking shop talk, bookbinding and writing workshops, and the launch of several new Gaspereau Press titles; and

Whereas this annual public event celebrates everything from the process of creating books, authors and writing, to typesetting, printing and binding;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House wish Gary Dunfield and Andrew Steeves, of Gaspereau Press, a successful weekend, and thank them for educating the community and preserving antique book production methods.

[Page 5821]

RESOLUTION NO. 3043

By: Mr. Mark Parent (Kings North)

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

Whereas more than 173,000 Nova Scotians are afflicted with the painful disease known as arthritis which costs the Canadian health system $4.4 billion a year; and

Whereas Kentville Nursing Supervisor Stephanie Toole is now preparing and fundraising for the Joints in Motion Marathon Training Team; and

Whereas Stephanie will participate in the San Diego Marathon on January 25th of the new year, as part of the Arthritis Society's Joints in Motion marathon training and fundraising program;

Therefore be it resolved that all MLAs in this House recognize the significant effort being put forth by Stephanie Toole, and wish her every success in both the marathon and with her fundraising efforts, as efforts continue to eliminate arthritis through research.

RESOLUTION NO. 3044

By: Mr. Mark Parent (Kings North)

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

Whereas one of the most utilized buildings on the Kentville Agricultural Centre grounds was recently named after the late Don Patterson, a long-time farm foreman employee; and

Whereas Don Patterson spent three decades working the farm where he and his wife, Phyllis, raised their four children; and

Whereas centre director Dr. Roy Bush unveiled the facility as the Patterson Building, housing staff quarters and a lunchroom;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate the Kentville Agricultural Centre, Phyllis Patterson and her family, and Dr. Roy Bush on naming this building in recognition of the late Don Patterson, a long-time and devoted employee.

[Page 5822]

NOTICE OF QUESTIONS FOR WRITTEN ANSWERS

Given on October 18, 2004

(Pursuant to Rule 30)

QUESTION NO. 2

By: Ms. Maureen MacDonald (Halifax Needham)

To: Hon. Angus MacIsaac (Minister of Health)

The Province of Nova Scotia only funds prescription arthritis medications at the same rate it would pay someone who is taking over-the-counter anti-inflammatory products (Aspirin, Tylenol, et cetera). These prescription medications are often more effective than over-the-counter remedies, and they are not the same type of treatment. Seniors are having to pay thousands of dollars out of pocket to use these medications, and they provide relief no other treatment provides.

(1) Why does the government continue to force seniors to pay the majority of costs on arthritis medication?

(2) Many of these products have been on the market a long time and are regarded as highly effective modern treatments - why have they not been added to the formulary?

(3) With wait lists for orthopaedic surgery in critical condition, many seniors rely on arthritis medications to stay independent and mobile until they can get surgery - isn't it time these drugs were covered at the full rate like any other medication on the formulary?

QUESTION NO. 3

By: Mr. Gordon Gosse (Cape Breton Nova)

To: Hon. Carolyn Bolivar-Getson (Minister of Human Resources)

Many graduates of post-secondary institutions within Nova Scotia have a serious challenge finding gainful employment, or indeed employment in their fields of study. The additional challenge they face is that the Post-Secondary Internship Program offered by the Province of Nova Scotia provides only a handful of opportunities, just 16 in 2003-04. The Public Service Commission Web site further indicates that the advertisements were only placed for a two-week period, in the middle of the Summer (June 22 - July 6, 2004), and that most available jobs are located in the Halifax area. A number of these graduates have skills and aptitudes that would be of use to the government, and many of them are interested in a career within the Public Service.

(1) Why is the government only providing 16 spaces for post-secondary graduates to enter and get experience in the Public Service?

[Page 5823]

(2) What is the rationale for limiting the available placements largely to the Halifax area, at the expense of the rural areas?

(3) What is the average age of public servants in Nova Scotia, and what is the government's projected need for staff due to retirement vacancies over each of the next five years?

QUESTION NO. 4

By: Mr. John MacDonell (Hants East)

To: Hon. Angus MacIsaac (Minister of Health)

Reta Laffin of Moose Brook, Nova Scotia, is a victim of tainted blood. She has hepatitis C. She is 75 and contracted hepatitis C 17 days outside the window of the compensation package. This disease has impacted upon her life for 14 years, and she is only seeking a fair and just settlement for her suffering and medical costs.

(1) Why will the province not entertain cases from outside the window of infection dates on the basis of merit?

(2) Why are people like Reta Laffin expected to handle the costs of their infection, through tainted blood, without any compensation or assistance from this province?

(3) The Premier advocated heartily for fair compensation when in Opposition, why has he changed his mind now?

QUESTION NO. 5

By: Ms. Marilyn More (Dartmouth South-Portland Valley)

To: Hon. David Morse (Minister of Community Services)

Nova Scotia was the only province whose rate of child poverty increased between 1999 and 2001, and it still hovers at unacceptable levels. When the National Child Tax Benefit Supplement clawback was ended in 2002, the personal use allowance for children in ESIA calculations was removed. It was worth more than the supplement, so families were left worse off. The National Council of Welfare has demonstrated this clearly.

(1) Why did this government allow personal use allowances for children to be eliminated from families on ESIA?

(2) Given the many studies demonstrating clearly that this practice is creating increased poverty and hunger among families, what action will the minister take to address this imbalance?

[Page 5824]

(3) Manitoba cancelled its clawback without touching children's benefits - why couldn't Nova Scotia do the same?

QUESTION NO. 6

By: Mr. Jerry Pye (Dartmouth North)

To: Hon. David Morse (Minister of Community Services)

In 2003, the Legislature passed a resolution that the minister would contact the federal government regarding the housing located in the former military base at Shannon Park. We have heard many media reports about plans for the land, including razing the housing to build a stadium, and allowing it to go to private developers. It is critical this housing be preserved for the hundreds of families in HRM who need affordable housing. A community group has formed with the goal of preserving the housing stock in Shannon Park.

(1) Could the minister provide an update on his actions to date on this important matter?

(2) What has the response of the federal government been regarding turning this housing into affordable housing like Cornwallis Park, and what commitments would the province have to make to accomplish this?

(3) Would the minister be willing to work with any community groups who can come up with a plan to save the housing stock, and perhaps explore ways the federal-provincial agreement could be utilized to this end?

QUESTION NO. 7

By: Mr. William Estabrooks (Timberlea-Prospect)

To: Hon. James Muir (Minister of Education)

The Black Learners Advisory Committee Report recommended that school boards hire more African Nova Scotian teachers and other visible minorities. It's been suggested that one way to achieve this would be through early hires. It's my understanding that school boards have been given the green light to do this, but I have been hearing that not many African Nova Scotians teachers have been hired if they do not speak French, or if they are not math or science teachers. I am particularly concerned with hiring outside of the Halifax Regional Municipality.

African Nova Scotian and other visible minority teachers are under-represented in Nova Scotia. Attracting these teachers should be a priority. Attracting more teachers would be a proactive way of embracing diversity, and improving our education system. How we go about recruiting these valuable teachers should be examined.

[Page 5825]

There will be a significant number of teacher retirements over the next four to five years. The BLAC Implementation Review Committee says in their 2003 report that this will create a window of opportunity to significantly increase the racial and cultural diversity within the Nova Scotia teaching force.

(1) Will you provide detailed hiring information, specifically how many new teachers were hired in Nova Scotia, and of those how many were African Nova Scotian and visible minorities, and in what teaching assignments?

(2) Can you provide an overview of what steps school boards throughout the province are taking to attract African Nova Scotian teachers and other visible minorities?

(3) How do you plan to take advantage of the upcoming hiring opportunities?

QUESTION NO. 8

By: Ms. Maureen MacDonald (Halifax Needham)

To: Hon. Angus MacIsaac (Minister of Health)

Suicide is one of the leading causes of injury-related deaths, and hospitalization in Nova Scotia. Research indicates that one person in 25 will attempt suicide in their lifetime. There were 600 suicide-related hospitalizations last year. The Help Line Society estimates that as many as 4,000 people may attempt suicide every year.

Both New Brunswick and Quebec have suicide prevention strategies. Most American states have strategies and we are told by the Help Line that Australia, England, and the United States have national prevention strategies. In Nova Scotia, the Help Line Society and the Mobile Crisis Intervention Service have put together a report that should set the province in motion. I'd like to table that report. The group points to some major holes in our system. Mobile crisis services are limited in Capital Health. In rural Nova Scotia, emergency rooms are often full, and I'm told there can be a 3- to 12-month waiting list to access services. A suicide prevention strategy would coordinate efforts, improve public education and could save lives.

Those who work in the field are quick to point out that because of the likelihood of warning signs, there is a high probability that we can save lives.

(1) Given the social, economic and human costs involved, when will your government introduce a suicide prevention strategy?

(2) What steps have you taken to develop a suicide prevention strategy to date?

[Page 5826]

(3) What efforts will you take immediately to develop a suicide prevention strategy and can you provide a timeline?

QUESTION NO. 9

By: Mr. John MacDonell (Hants East)

To: Hon. Chris d'Entremont (Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries)

The Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture does important work and is an advocacy group for farmers at all levels of government. With today's farming crisis in Nova Scotia their work is as important as ever.

The NSFA is funded through registration fees paid by farmers as outlined in the Farm Registration Act. Currently the fees paid to the NSFA through the Farm Registration Act are refundable. These refunds totalled $50,195. This kind of reduction, 11.9 per cent, of their total income makes budgeting and planning difficult.

(1) What is this department willing to do to ensure the NSFA has a stable source of income?

(2) What will you, as the minister, do to help the NSFA meet its needs?

(3) Will you, as minister, commit to amending the Farm Registration Act by removing Section 8(4A) and Section 8(4B) from the Act?

QUESTION NO. 10

By: Mr. John MacDonell (Hants East)

To: Hon. Ronald Russell (Minister of Transportation and Public Works)

My constituency used to have three operations sheds. Presently it only has two, one in Noel and one in Milford. Unfortunately, it is not a case here of having the crews of three sheds spread out over two, but a case of having the crew of one having the responsibility of an area formerly served by three fully-crewed sheds.

The TPW staff in Hants East has been cut to the point that the two remaining sheds are often forced to share workers in order to make up a full crew necessary to do a single job. One can imagine the difficulty of getting very much done.

(1) Will you, as the minister, admit that there has been an active plan by this government to cripple the department's ability to service the needs of people in Hants East?

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(2) When I speak to department officials I am told that a decision about what work will be done in my constituency is out of their control. That can only mean that one individual has exercised his authority over what work will be done in my constituency. If this is the case, why have you not instructed staff to deal with the issue of roads in my constituency based on their condition?

(3) When will this government come out of the political Stone Age and recognize that punishing the voters in constituencies held by Opposition members is no way to curry favour with them.

QUESTION NO. 11

By: Mr. Charles Parker (Pictou West)

To: Hon. Ronald Russell (Minister of Transportation and Public Works)

Approximately 35 years ago the Pictou Causeway was constructed across Pictou Harbour as a shorter link between the Town of Pictou and the upper towns. The causeway does save considerable time; however, over the years large amounts of sediment and organic material, which once would have flushed out with the tide, has filled in above the causeway causing health and environmental concerns. A recent study by the Pictou Environmental Protection Project showed fecal coliform counts above 200 parts per million in some areas.

(1) Will your department consider a bridge to allow for more tidal flow in the West River estuary at Lyons Brook to help solve this problem?

QUESTION NO. 12

By: Mr. Charles Parker (Pictou West)

To: Hon. Angus MacIsaac (Minister of Health)

Approximately 35 years ago the Pictou Causeway was constructed across Pictou Harbour as a shorter link between the Town of Pictou and the upper towns. The causeway does save considerable time; however, over the years large amounts of sediment and organic material, which once would have flushed out with the tide, has filled in above the causeway causing health and environmental concerns. A recent study by the Pictou Environmental Protection Project showed fecal coliform counts above 200 parts per million in some areas.

(1) Are you, as the Minister of Health, aware of these problems and, if so, what is your department prepared to do?

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QUESTION NO. 13

By: Mr. Charles Parker (Pictou West)

To: Hon. Kerry Morash (Minister of Environment and Labour)

Approximately 35 years ago the Pictou Causeway was constructed across Pictou Harbour as a shorter link between the Town of Pictou and the upper towns. The causeway does save considerable time; however, over the years large amounts of sediment and organic material, which once would have flushed out with the tide, has filled in above the causeway causing health and environmental concerns. A recent study by the Pictou Environmental Protection Project showed fecal coliform counts above 200 parts per million in some areas.

(1) Will you request that the Department of Environment and Labour visit this area and investigate the cause of these odours and help residents work towards solutions?