The Nova Scotia Legislature

The House resumed on:
September 21, 2017.

HANSARD 03/04/05-71

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

FRIDAY, APRIL 22, 2005

TABLE OF CONTENTS PAGE
PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS:
Educ.: Tuition Fees - Reduce, Mr. S. McNeil 6257
Educ.: Tuition Fees - Reduce, Mr. W. Estabrooks 6257
Educ.: Tuition Fees - Reduce, Mr. L. Glavine 6258
Educ.: Post-Secondary Funding - Restore, Mr. D. Dexter 6258
TABLING REPORTS, REGULATIONS AND OTHER PAPERS:
Workers' Compensation Board 2004 Annual Report,
Hon. K. Morash 6259
GOVERNMENT NOTICES OF MOTION:
Res. 3295, Volunteerism - Public Servants: Contribution - Recognize,
Hon. C. Bolivar-Getson 6259
Vote - Affirmative 6259
Res. 3296, Environ. & Lbr. - Conservation: MLAs - Example Set,
Hon. K. Morash 6260
Vote - Affirmative 6261
Res. 3297, Bent, Thomas: People to People Forum - Attendance,
Hon. J. Muir 6261
Vote - Affirmative 6262
INTRODUCTION OF BILLS:
No. 163, Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act,
Mr. K. Deveaux 6262
No. 164, Employment Support and Income Assistance Act,
Mr. Manning MacDonald 6262
No. 165, Education Act, Hon. J. Muir 6262
No. 166, Income Tax Act, Mr. L. Glavine 6262
NOTICES OF MOTION:
Res. 3298, Environ. & Lbr. - Environ. Awareness: Participants -
Commend, Ms. J. Massey 6262
Vote - Affirmative 6263
Res. 3299, Massoud, Sarah: Environ. Concerns - Recognize,
Ms. D. Whalen 6263
Vote - Affirmative 6264
Res. 3300, Katimavik: Tatamagouche Area - Welcome,
Mr. W. Langille 6264
Vote - Affirmative 6265
Res. 3301, Environ. & Lbr.: Protected Wildlife Spaces - Increase,
Mr. J. MacDonell 6265
Res. 3302, Rethinking Development Conf.: Relevance - Recognize,
Mr. D. Graham 6266
Res. 3303, McGee, Dr. Robin - IWK Award, Mr. M. Parent 6266
Vote - Affirmative 6267
Res. 3304, Tyner, Val & Cliff - Merritt Award, Mr. D. Dexter 6267
Vote - Affirmative 6268
Res. 3305, Holocaust: Victims - Memory Honour,
Mr. Manning MacDonald 6268
Vote - Affirmative 6269
Res. 3306, Peach, LeRoy & Barbara: Heart & Stroke Fdn. -
Contribution, Mr. R. MacKinnon 6269
Vote - Affirmative 6269
Res. 3307, Maritime Helicopter Project: Construction - Congrats.,
Mr. K. Deveaux 6269
Vote - Affirmative 6270
Res. 3308, Ecole Beau-Port - Race Against Drugs Prog.,
Mr. Michel Samson 6270
Vote - Affirmative 6271
Res. 3309, Law, David & Marjorie: S. Branch Farm - Triplet Calves,
Mr. B. Taylor 6272
Vote - Affirmative 6272
Res. 3310, Estabrooks, Bill - Doubleday Mem. Award,
Mr. F. Corbett 6272
Vote - Affirmative 6273
Res. 3311, Sport: Adams Rink - Curling Championship,
Mr. L. Glavine 6273
Vote - Affirmative 6274
Res. 3312, Brannon, Scott - QMJHL Draft, Mr. J. DeWolfe 6274
Vote - Affirmative 6275
Res. 3313, Christ Church Players:
Joseph & The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat - Production,
Ms. M. More 6275
Vote - Affirmative 6275
Res. 3314, Brooks, Deacon Rose Mary: Black Cultural Society (N.S.)
- Induction, Mr. K. Colwell 6276
Vote - Affirmative 6277
Res. 3315, Anderson, Prof. Alan: Research - Recognize,
Hon. A. MacIsaac 6277
Vote - Affirmative 6277
Res. 3316, Agric. & Fish.: Owner/Operator Policy: Enforce,
Mr. C. Parker 6277
Res. 3317, Lajoie, Rachel - Nat'l. Debate Championship,
Mr. S. McNeil 6278
Vote - Affirmative 6279
Res. 3318, Ramsey, Jim - Barbering Anniv. (39th), Hon. J. Muir 6279
Vote - Affirmative 6279
Res. 3319, Robert, Dorothy/Q Note Singers - Congrats.,
Ms. M. Raymond 6280
Vote - Affirmative 6280
Res. 3320, Theriault, Rick/Saulnierville Pharmacy -
Commun. Contribution, Mr. W. Gaudet 6280
Vote - Affirmative 6281
Res. 3321, Johnston, Darla: Bus. Success - Congrats.,
Hon. B. Barnet 6281
Vote - Affirmative 6282
Res. 3322, Belgrade Peace Conf.: HRM Students - Participation,
Mr. H. Epstein 6282
Vote - Affirmative 6283
Res. 3323, TPW: Hwy. No. 101 (Digby-Weymouth) - Prioritize,
Mr. H. Theriault 6283
Res. 3324, Bluenose II: Classic Boat Magazine - Ranking,
Hon. M. Baker 6284
Vote - Affirmative 6284
Res. 3325, Salvation Army - Anniv. (120th), Mr. J. Pye 6284
Vote - Affirmative 6285
Res. 3326, United Brotherhood of Carpenters & Joiners (Local 1588) -
Anniv. (100th), Mr. Gerald Sampson 6285
Vote - Affirmative 6286
Res. 3327, Bridgewater FD Band: Circa 1869 - Congrats.,
Hon. C. Bolivar-Getson 6286
Vote - Affirmative 6287
Res. 3328, C.B. Fiddlers Run: Organizing Comm. - Congrats.,
Mr. G. Gosse 6287
Vote - Affirmative 6287
Res. 3329, Boudreau, Delores - 2005 ECMAs, Mr. Michel Samson 6288
Vote - Affirmative 6288
Res. 3330, Military Police Co. (30th) - Lower Sackville: Location -
Congrats., Mr. David Wilson (Sackville-Cobequid) 6288
Vote - Affirmative 6289
Res. 3331, White, Dr. Ronald Lorne: Black Cultural Soc. (N.S.) -
Induction, Mr. K. Colwell 6289
Vote - Affirmative 6290
Res. 3332, Mt. A. Women's Rugby Team: Calendar - Congrats.,
Mr. W. Estabrooks 6290
Vote - Affirmative 6290
Res. 3333, KOC (Coun. 1060) - Anniv. (100th),
Mr. Manning MacDonald 6291
Vote - Affirmative 6291
Res. 3334, Health Prom. - N.S. Boxing Auth.: Woman Member -
Ensure, Mr. W. Estabrooks 6291
Res. 3335, Barrette, Saphire - Nat'l. Commonwealth Debating Seminar,
Mr. S. McNeil 6292
Vote - Affirmative 6293
Res. 3336, CFB Shearwater: Rapid Deployment Force -
Location Support, Mr. K. Deveaux 6293
Vote - Affirmative 6293
Res. 3337, Earth Day: Environ. Protection - Contemplate,
Mr. L. Glavine 6293
Res. 3338, Health: Long-Term Care Prog. - Adjust,
Mr. David Wilson (Glace Bay) 6294
Res. 3339, Digby Career Resource Ctr. - Career Fair,
Mr. H. Theriault 6295
Vote - Affirmative 6296
GOVERNMENT BUSINESS:
PUBLIC BILLS FOR SECOND READING:
No. 160, University College of Cape Breton Act 6296
Hon. J. Muir 6296
Mr. G. Gosse 6297
Mr. David Wilson (Glace Bay) 6297
Hon. J. Muir 6297
Vote - Affirmative 6298
No. 159, Université Sainte-Anne - Collège de l'Acadie Act 6298
Hon. J. Muir 6298
Mr. W. Estabrooks 6299
M. Michel Samson 6300
Hon. C. d'Entremont 6303
Hon. J. Muir 6304
Vote - Affirmative 6305
No. 152, Liquor Control Act 6305
Hon. E. Fage 6305
Mr. G. Gosse 6306
Mr. Michel Samson 6306
Hon. E. Fage 6307
Vote - Affirmative 6307
No. 148, Justice Administration Amendment (2005) Act 6307
Hon. R. Russell 6307
Mr. K. Deveaux 6308
Mr. Michel Samson 6308
Hon. R. Russell 6309
Vote - Affirmative 6309
No. 158, Paramedics Act 6309
Hon. A. MacIsaac 6309
Mr. David Wilson (Sackville-Cobequid) 6311
Hon. A. MacIsaac 6320
Vote - Affirmative 6320
No. 161, Special Places Protection Act 6320
Hon. K. Morash 6321
Ms. J. Massey 6322
Mr. L. Glavine 6326
Ms. D. Whalen 6327
Mr. J. MacDonell 6330
Ms. M. Raymond 6332
Hon. K. Morash 6333
Vote - Affirmative 6333
ADJOURNMENT, House rose to meet again on Mon., Apr. 25th at 4:00 p.m. 6333
NOTICES OF MOTION UNDER RULE 32(3):
Res. 3340, Williams, Dolly: Black Cultural Soc. (N.S.) - Induction
Mr. K. Colwell 6334
Res. 3341, Thomas Bernard, Dr. Wanda: Black Cultural Soc. (N.S.) -
Induction, Mr. K. Colwell 6334
Res. 3342, Hudson, Patricia - Figure Skating Awards,
Mr. L. Glavine 6335
Res. 3343, Hfx. West World Involvement Comm.: Work - Acknowledge,
Ms. D. Whalen 6335
Res. 3344, RCMP - Vial of Life Prog., Mr. K. Colwell 6336
Res. 3345, WOW TV (Weymouth) - Congrats., Mr. H. Theriault 6336
Res. 3346, Health - Palliative Care: Caregivers - Appreciation Extend,
Mr. David Wilson (Glace Bay) 6337
Res. 3347, Occ. Health & Safety Wk. (N. America) Awards: Recipients -
Congrats., Mr. David Wilson (Glace Bay) 6337

[Page 6257]

HALIFAX, FRIDAY, APRIL 22, 2005

Fifty-ninth General Assembly

First Session

9:00 A.M.

SPEAKER

Hon. Murray Scott

DEPUTY SPEAKERS

Mr. James DeWolfe, Ms. Joan Massey, Mr. Daniel Graham

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. We will begin the daily routine.

PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Annapolis.

MR. STEPHEN MCNEIL: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition signed by 120 post-secondary students in this province who are concerned and want a reduction in tuition fees. I have affixed my signature.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

The honourable member for Timberlea-Prospect.

MR. WILLIAM ESTABROOKS: Mr. Speaker, I have a petition here from 120 post-secondary students who are concerned about the tuition fees and they have the "whereas" clause that was read earlier by my learned friend, so I won't repeat it. I have affixed my signature.

6257

[Page 6258]

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

The honourable member for Kings West.

MR. LEO GLAVINE: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition signed by 120 post-secondary students in this province who are concerned and want a reduction in tuition fees. I have affixed my name to this petition.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

The honourable Leader of the Official Opposition.

MR. DARRELL DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition, the operative clause which reads:

"Therefore your petitioners call upon the Legislative Assembly of Nova Scotia to:

� Legislate a progressive reduction of tuition fees at Nova Scotia's public post-secondary institutions;

� Increase post-secondary education funding;

� Implement a system of needs-based, non-repayable grants;

� Call on the federal government to restore federal funding for post secondary education and to negotiate a national agreement on standards of quality, accessibility and mobility for post-secondary education."

Mr. Speaker, there are 120 signatures of students from around the province, and I have affixed my signature.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES

TABLING REPORTS, REGULATIONS AND OTHER PAPERS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Environment and Labour.

[Page 6259]

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

MR. SPEAKER: The report is tabled.

STATEMENTS BY MINISTERS

GOVERNMENT NOTICES OF MOTION

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Human Resources.

RESOLUTION NO. 3295

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 Nova Scotians have a rich history of volunteering and community involvement and can be found helping out in many endeavours from soup kitchens to fire departments, hospices to libraries, volunteers strengthen our communities; and

Whereas the Government of Nova Scotia is committed to recognizing the volunteerism already carried out by many public servants and to encourage even more community involvement; and

Whereas the week of April 17th to 23rd is National Volunteer Week;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House acknowledge and honour the valuable contributions that public servants make to their communities across the province through volunteerism.

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 6260]

The honourable Minister of Environment and Labour.

HON. KERRY MORASH: Mr. Speaker, I would like to make an introduction before reading the resolution. Joining us in the Speaker's Gallery are two environmentally-conscious young Nova Scotians who have been recognized for their efforts with $5,000 scholarships from the Toyota Earth Day Scholarship Program. Christie McClelland is a student at Oxford Regional High School in Oxford, and Sarah Massoud is a student at Sacred Heart School in Halifax.

Christie is being recognized for leading the building of an informative nature trail in an ecologically sensitive area near her school. Sarah is a member of her school's environment committee which leads a recycling program, fundraising and raising awareness among students and staff. Both students make the environment a priority, while maintaining excellent grades and pursuing a host of other extracurricular activities.

I would like to ask these young ladies to rise and receive a warm welcome from the members of this House, as well as our thanks. We look forward to the impact that they will make on this area, this community and this province in the future. (Applause)

RESOLUTION NO. 3296

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

Whereas today is Earth Day in Nova Scotia and around the world; and

Whereas two young Nova Scotians, Sarah Massoud and Christie McClelland are being rewarded for their outstanding commitment to the environment with $5,000 scholarships from Toyota's Earth Day Scholarship Program; and

Whereas these young ladies and Nova Scotians across the province make it Earth Day every day of the year by recycling, composting and wasting less in their daily lives;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House lead by example and make an effort to walk more and drive less, use recyclable coffee mugs, and conserve energy because Nova Scotia is too good to waste.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 6261]

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Environment and Labour.

HON. KERRY MORASH: Mr. Speaker, if I might also, there are two people up there who weren't introduced, one is the father of one of the ladies and the mother of the other. David McClelland is here accompanying his daughter and - I'm having problems with pronunciation - Nabiha Atallah. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: We certainly welcome our special guests to the gallery today, and congratulations to the two young girls. Christie, by the way, is from Cumberland South, Oxford, Nova Scotia - a little plug there for Cumberland South. Congratulations, girls.

The honourable Minister of Education.

RESOLUTION NO. 3297

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

Whereas Thomas Bent of Dartmouth, a Southdale-North Woodside Grade 6 student attended a prestigious People to People Leadership Forum in Washington, D.C. during March break; and

Whereas Thomas was nominated by his school principal, Jane Matheson, and was the only Canadian of the 164 students chosen to attend the event, which was first set up in the 1950s by former U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower; and

Whereas Thomas participated in small group discussions and exercises relating to leadership development strategies, how decisions are made and how consensus is built;

Therefore be it resolved that all the MLAs of this House congratulate Thomas Bent on being selected to attend this select leadership forum, and wish him continued success in all his future studies.

[Page 6262]

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.

[9:15 a.m.]

INTRODUCTION OF BILLS

Bill No. 163 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 5 of the Acts of 1993. The Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. (Mr. Kevin Deveaux)

Bill No. 164 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 27 of the Acts of 2000. The Employment Support and Income Assistance Act. (Mr. Manning MacDonald)

Bill No. 165 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 1 of the Acts of 1995-96. The Education Act. (Hon. James Muir)

Bill No. 166 - Entitled an Act to Amend Chapter 217 of the Revised Statutes of 1989. The Income Tax Act. (Mr. Leo Glavine)

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

NOTICES OF MOTION

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Dartmouth East.

RESOLUTION NO. 3298

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

[Page 6263]

Whereas today is Earth Day, the largest, most celebrated environmental event worldwide; and

Whereas more than 6 million Canadians join 500 million people in over 180 countries in staging events and projects to address local environmental issues; and

Whereas there are many activities taking place to celebrate this very important event such as recycling, water conservation, cleanups, walks and tree planting to name but a few;

Therefore be it resolved that this government commend all those people across Nova Scotia and around the world for doing their part in bringing awareness to the environmental issues our Earth is facing.

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. 3299

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

Whereas Sacred Heart student Sarah Massoud is one of only two Atlantic Canadians to be awarded the prestigious $5,000 Toyota Earth Day scholarship in 2005; and

Whereas Sarah, a resident of Clayton Park West, is an active volunteer in her church, school and community, and still finds time to participate in the annual Sacred Heart musicals and sing in their award-winning choir; and

Whereas she's been identified as one of Canada's emerging environmental leaders for her local work on environmental challenges and her innovative scientific study through the Shad Valley program at the University of Waterloo;

[Page 6264]

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House recognize Sarah Massoud for her caring and commitment to the environment, to her studies and to her friends, and wish her every success in the future.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Colchester North.

RESOLUTION NO. 3300

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

Whereas Tatamagouche area residents and community groups can expect a volunteer boost from the national youth organization Katimavik; and

Whereas consisting of 33 young members ages 17 to 21, Katimavik has established a seven-month commitment to volunteer their time to local residents and groups; and

Whereas participants in the program work on leadership skills, environment, healthy living, and exposure to a different culture;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House welcome the Katimavik members to Tatamagouche and thank them for their volunteer work in the community.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver.

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

[Page 6265]

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Hants East.

RESOLUTION NO. 3301

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

Whereas this Conservative Government's Department of Natural Resources has recommended the delisting of wildlife management areas and sanctuaries totalling 72,000 hectares; and

Whereas today, April 22nd, is the 35th Anniversary of Earth Day and more than 6 million Canadians are joining 500 million people in over 180 countries in staging events and projects to address local environmental issues; and

Whereas the residents of Nova Scotia value their natural spaces and appreciate the need for more lands to be protected by this government;

Therefore be it resolved that this House urge the Conservative Government to listen to Nova Scotians and create more protected wildlife spaces and nature reserves so current and future generations may continue to enjoy their natural environments for many, many years to come.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear a No.

The notice is tabled.

[Page 6266]

The honourable member for Halifax Citadel.

RESOLUTION NO. 3302

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

Whereas Nova Scotia will host an international conference titled Rethinking Development: Local Pathways to Global Well-being" on June 20th to June 24th at St. Francis Xavier University in Antigonish and this conference will profile exemplary models of development worldwide in four areas - environmental preservation, cultural and social cohesion, good governance, and sustainable and responsible economic development; and

Whereas this conference will be addressed by Their Excellencies the Governor General of Canada, the Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson, and John Ralston Saul, and will be attended by a high-level ministerial delegation from the Kingdom of Bhutan and by delegates from 25 other countries; and

Whereas it is acknowledged that economic development should be carefully fostered along pathways that ensure the enhancement of well-being and that there is an urgent need for practical, sane development alternatives that protect environmental, social, spiritual and cultural values;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of the Nova Scotia Legislature recognize this conference on Rethinking Development to be highly relevant to the people of Nova Scotia and to the future of this province and recognize that it will bring great benefit to the province and to Nova Scotians.

MR. SPEAKER: The resolution was a bit long. It was a very nice one though.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Kings North.

RESOLUTION NO. 3303

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

Whereas Valley Regional Hospital psychologist Robin McGee was the recipient earlier this year of the first IWK Children's Hospital Award for Outstanding Practice in Clinical Psychology; and

[Page 6267]

Whereas Dr. McGee practices privately as well, but is recognized for her strong leadership; and

Whereas Dr. McGee's award was for developing comprehensive clinical protocols for the diagnosis and treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder;

Therefore be it resolved that Dr. Robin McGee be commended by all MLAs in the Nova Scotia Legislature for her research and for becoming the initial winner of the IWK Children's Hospital Award for Outstanding Practice in Clinical Psychology.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver.

MR. SPEAKER: There has been 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. 3304

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

Whereas the sixth annual 2005 Robert Merritt Awards were presented at the Theatre Nova Scotia ceremony on Monday, March 21st, at Alderney Landing Theatre; and

Whereas the Merritt Awards recognize high achievement and celebrate excellence in theatre in the Province of Nova Scotia; and

Whereas Val Tyner and Cliff Tyner were winners of the esteemed 2005 Merritt Award for their many years of dedication and commitment as volunteers with Dartmouth Players;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House of Assembly extend congratulations to Val Tyner and Cliff Tyner on being awarded this distinguished award and commend them for their efforts and support of theatre in the community.

[Page 6268]

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Cape Breton South.

RESOLUTION NO. 3305

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

Whereas on Friday, May 6th, a Yom Hashoah Holocaust Memorial Service will take place at the Temple Sons of Israel Synagogue, Whitney Avenue in Sydney; and

Whereas this year Philip Riteman returns to Sydney to recount the horrors he endured at the hands of the Nazis during World War II as a prisoner of Auschwitz-Birkenau and Dachau where he lost his entire family to the gas chambers; and

Whereas in this Year of the Veteran candles will be lit by members of the Royal Canadian Legion before the Friday evening Sabbath service;

Therefore be it resolved that members of the Legislature of the Province of Nova Scotia honour the memory of those who perished in the Holocaust and those who liberated Europe from this horrible dark time by never forgetting and through a dedication to democracy and human rights.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

[Page 6269]

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. 3306

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

Whereas volunteerism is the lifeline to a successful community; and

Whereas LeRoy and Barbara Peach of Port Morien, Cape Breton County, have excelled as community-minded volunteers; and

Whereas LeRoy and Barbara Peach have been awarded the Lieutenant Governor's Medal for their outstanding volunteer efforts with the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Nova Scotia;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly recognize and congratulate LeRoy and Barbara Peach for their outstanding contribution to the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Nova Scotia.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Cole Harbour-Eastern Passage.

RESOLUTION NO. 3307

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

[Page 6270]

Whereas the new Maritime helicopter for the Canadian military, the Sikorsky H-92 Cyclone, was announced as the replacement for the Sea King helicopter, finally, in November 2004 with the first aircraft to be delivered by 2008; and

Whereas the Maritime Helicopter Project includes a $45 million training facility to be located at 12 Wing Shearwater and to be opened by 2007 to assist with the training of flight and maintenance crews for the H-92 Cyclone; and

Whereas on April 21, 2005, L-3 Communications, a partner in the Maritime Helicopter Project announced at Shearwater that PCL will build the new facility starting in May 2005, and creating 160 construction jobs in the community;

Therefore be it resolved that this House recognize the Maritime Helicopter Project, in particular L-3 Communications for creating economic development opportunities in the Eastern Passage community and wish them all the best in the construction of the H-92 Cyclone training facility.

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 in the House of the Liberal Party.

RESOLUTION NO. 3308

M. MICHEL SAMSON: M. le Président, par la présente je vous avis qu'à une date ultérieure, je demanderai l'adoption de la resolution suivante:

Attendu que le personnel et les élèves de l'école Beau-Port d'Arichat ont récemment reçu une plaque de la GRC pour leur participation au programme Course contre la drogue;

Attendu que la prévention de la consommation de drogues continue d'être un outil important permettant de faire connaître aux enfants les effets et les conséquences de la consomation de drogues;

[Page 6271]

Attendu qu' une plus grande sensibilisation envers les drogues par la participation à de tels programmes peut réduire la consommation future de drogues par les élèves de l'ècole Beau-Port;

Il est résolu que tous les membres de cette assemblée reconaissent la contribution du personnel et des élèves de l'école Beau-Port à la sensibilisation et à la prévention de la consommation de drogues par leur participation au programme Course contre la drogue.

M. le President, je demande qu'un avis ne soit pas nécessaire et que la résolution soit adoptée sans délibérations.

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

Wheres staff and students at École Beau-Port in Arichat recently received a plaque of participation from the RCMP for their involvement in the Race Against Drugs Program; and

Whereas drug prevention continues to be an important tool to educate children on the effects and consequences of substance abuse; and

Whereas increasing drug awareness by participation in such programs may reduce the occurrence of future drug use among students attending École Beau-Port;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House recognize the staff and students of École Beau-Port for contributing to drug awareness and prevention by participating in the Race Against Drugs Program.

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-Musquodoboit Valley.

[Page 6272]

[9:30 a.m.]

RESOLUTION NO. 3309

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

Whereas earlier this Winter at a farm in South Branch, Colchester County, an oddity in the birth of cows transpired; and

Whereas three cows, all females, were born to an adult Holstein heifer and according to a professor in reproductive technology at the Nova Scotia Agricultural College, approximately one in every 50,000 cows produces triplets; and

Whereas Professor Leslie McLaren said the births in Upper Stewiacke Valley were quite uncommon on two fronts, one that they were triplets and two that they were all females, noting Holsteins have a far greater chance of producing twins than beef breeds do;

Therefore be it resolved that congratulations be extended by all members of this Legislative Assembly to David and Marjorie Law on this unique birthing episode on their farm, and wish them continued success with their dairy farm and their 75 milking Holsteins.

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 Centre.

RESOLUTION NO. 3310

MR. FRANK CORBETT: Before I read this notice of motion, I have to say I do it understanding the rights and privileges accorded to me as a member of this Legislature and I do it under duress.

[Page 6273]

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

Whereas the Richard Doubleday Memorial Award recognizes a legendary old-timers hockey player in the St. Margarets Bay area; and

Whereas the award goes to a hockey player in the St. Margaret's Masters Hockey League who best typifies the spirit of old-timers hockey, who plays the game for the love of it - because he can't skate; and

Whereas Bill Estabrooks has been selected as this year's recipient of the Richard Doubleday award;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate Bill Estabrooks on receiving the Richard Doubleday Memorial Award, with advice to keep his head up and his stick on the ice.

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 Kings West.

RESOLUTION NO. 3311

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

Whereas the Adams Rink won the Labatt Tankard Provincial Mens Curling Championship at the Bridgewater Curling Club; and

Whereas that championship was the first Nova Scotia title for Kelly Mittelstadt, it was the third for Shawn Adams and Craig Burgess, and the fourth Tankard for Paul Flemming; and

[Page 6274]

Whereas the Adams Rink went on to proudly represent Nova Scotia at the Tim Hortons Brier and reach the championship game which gave them a berth in the 2006 Olympic trials;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate Shawn Adams, Craig Burgess, Paul Flemming and Kelly Mittelstadt on a successful season, and extend best wishes at the Olympic trials this December 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 Pictou East.

RESOLUTION NO. 3312

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

Whereas Churchville, Pictou County native Scott Brannon has amply demonstrated his unique and talented hockey skills throughout his minor hockey career; and

Whereas Scott is listed as a potential first round draft choice in the upcoming Quebec Major Junior Hockey League draft scheduled for June 6th in Chicoutimi, Quebec; and

Whereas Scott Brannon, while playing Triple "A" Midget Hockey this season with the Pictou County Weeks Midgets, finished 11th in league scoring;

Therefore be it resolved that all MLAs in this House extend congratulations to Scott Brannon and wish him every success when the final ranking list of the QMJHL is released May 1st.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 6275]

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. 3313

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

Whereas the Christ Church Players presented Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat February 24 to 26, 2005; and

Whereas dozens of parishioners and friends of Christ (Anglican) Church, Dartmouth, were involved as cast, production crew and technical experts with Larry Graham as director and Candace Vieira as producer; and

Whereas packed audiences enjoyed every performance, especially the talents of Jonathan Mailman, Debbie Thomson and Archdeacon Paul Smith;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate the Christ Church Players for their successful run of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.

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 6276]

The honourable member for member for Preston.

RESOLUTION NO. 3314

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

Whereas Deacon Rose Mary Brooks, Vice-President of the African United Baptist Association Women's Institute and the East Preston Senior Citizens' Club, is highly regarded for her endless commitment in her community; and

Whereas Deacon Brooks has been recognized for her volunteer work by the YWCA and the Elizabeth Fry "Rebels With a Cause"; and

Whereas Deacon Brooks was inducted . . .

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

MR. COLWELL: Mr. Speaker, with your permission I'll start this over.

Whereas Deacon Rose Mary Brooks, Vice President of the African United Baptist Association Women's Institute and the East Preston Senior Citizens' Club, is highly regarded for her endless commitment in her community; and

Whereas Deacon Brooks has been recognized for her volunteer work by the YWCA and the Elizabeth Fry "Rebels With a Cause"; and

Whereas Deacon Brooks was inducted by the Black Cultural Society of Nova Scotia into the Reverend Dr. William P. Oliver Wall of Fame on February 12, 2005;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Deacon Brooks and honour her lifetime of work in the community and the major contribution she has made to Nova Scotia.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

[Page 6277]

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Health.

RESOLUTION NO. 3315

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

Whereas St. F.X. University's Earth Sciences Professor Alan Anderson will be presented, next month in Halifax, with the 2005 W.W. Hutchinson Medal; and

Whereas the medal is a major nation-wide geology award awarded by the Geological Association of Canada for exceptional advances in research; and

Whereas the medal to be presented during the Geological Association's annual meeting in Halifax in May, is being awarded for Mr. Anderson's numerous contributions to the study of the chemical and physical properties of fluids in the earth's crust;

Therefore be it resolved that all MLAs of this House recognize the exceptional research undertaken by Professor Alan Anderson at St. F.X. University and commend him for his outstanding work in geology research.

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.

RESOLUTION NO. 3316

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

[Page 6278]

Whereas the lack of enforcement by DFO of the owner/operator policy is presently the greatest threat to our inshore fishery and is allowing the corporate takeover of the industry; and

Whereas thousands of Nova Scotian earn their living in the fishery, and the economy of coastal communities is dependent on a family-based fishery; and

Whereas communities suffer when their fishery is taken over by outside interests;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Department of Agriculture and Fisheries use every means at their disposal to encourage DFO to start enforcing the owner/operator policy in our inshore fishery.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear a No.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Annapolis.

RESOLUTION NO. 3317

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

Whereas Rachel Lajoie is a Grade 11 student at Middleton Regional High School; and

Whereas Rachel will be joining seven other students from the Province of Nova Scotia in Saskatoon on April 23rd to 29th to participate in the National Debate Championship; and

Whereas Rachel is one of the bilingual representatives from our province;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Rachel and wish her good luck in the national championship.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 6279]

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. 3318

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

Whereas Jim Ramsey of Truro has celebrated his 39th Anniversary as a barber; and

Whereas since 1998 he has operated his own barber shop, Jim's, which has become known for its seasonal window displays of photos of bygone years in Truro; and

Whereas clients appreciate Jim's cheerful and amicable manner while chatting about some noteworthy event, past or present, whilst receiving a great haircut from this gentlemen of a barber who also volunteers many hours helping others;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Jim Ramsey on his 39 years of barbering and wish him continued health and happiness.

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 6280]

The honourable member for Halifax Atlantic.

RESOLUTION NO. 3319

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

Whereas singing has been an important part of community life in Nova Scotia since the earliest days of the province, bringing happiness and shared recreation to young and old alike; and

Whereas Dorothy Roberts of Spryfield took it upon herself 18 months ago to found the Quarter Note Singers, a 10-member, mixed-voice choir; and

Whereas the group has worked diligently to assemble a repertoire of jazz, barbershop and folk, beloved by parents' and grandparents' generations;

Therefore be it resolved that this House commend Ms. Roberts on her initiative, and extend congratulations to the Quarter Note Singers on bringing their spirited renditions of old favourites to the community of Spryfield.

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 Clare.

RESOLUTION NO. 3320

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 Saulnierville Pharmacy has recently been honoured at the Annual Provincial Volunteers Awards ceremony in Halifax; and

[Page 6281]

Whereas the Saulnierville Pharmacy was awarded the 2005 Building Healthier Futures Corporate Award in recognition of their commitment and dedication to volunteerism, ensuring Clare is a better place to live; and

Whereas the Saulnierville Pharmacy has a store policy to accommodate staff schedules when events are taking place, in order to encourage staff to volunteer in the community;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Rick Theriault, owner of Saulnierville Pharmacy, and his staff at the Saulnierville Pharmacy for their generosity and willingness to help in whichever way they can and recognize the contributions they have made to their community.

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 Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations.

RESOLUTION NO. 3321

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

Whereas Darla Johnston, owner and operator of Sackville Laser Clinic, recently celebrated her second anniversary of the opening of her store; and

Whereas business for Darla's services has been booming ever since with both male and female clients; and

Whereas Darla was nominated for a New Business of the Year Award from the Halifax Chamber of Commerce;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House join me in sending along our congratulations to Darla Johnston on her thriving business, and wish her the best of luck for a prosperous future.

[Page 6282]

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 Chebucto.

RESOLUTION NO. 3322

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

Whereas 10 students from St. Patrick's High School in Halifax, together with 18 students from Eastern Shore District High School, recently formed the group Students for Teaching Peace; and

Whereas through fundraising they earned $20,000 to help defray some of the cost of a 12-day trip to Belgrade, Serbia, to attend a youth-led peace conference this past March; and

Whereas with the assistance of the National Film Board of Canada the students documented their experiences, with the intention of producing a feature film;

Therefore be it resolved that this House congratulate the students, teachers and organizers who made it possible for the student from St. Patrick's High School and Eastern Shore District High School to attend the peace conference in Belgrade, Serbia, and acknowledge this significant learning experience.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

[Page 6283]

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. 3323

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

Whereas the people of Digby-Annapolis who live between Digby and Weymouth, on old Highway 1, are living approximately 20 feet off . . .

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. The honourable member for Digby-Annapolis has the floor.

MR. THERIAULT: Whereas the people of Digby-Annapolis who live between Digby and Weymouth, on old Highway 1, are living approximately 20 feet off of this road; and

Whereas this road is being used by heavy traffic coming off Highway No. 101, and recently two trailer tractors have gone off this road, barely missing schoolchildren getting off the bus, and also the homes that they live in; and

Whereas for 30 years people have been asking for a new controlled-access highway in this area, and now people are afraid to go to sleep in their homes at night, not knowing when a trailer truck will be coming through it;

Therefore be it resolved that this government put that piece of Highway No. 101 on its priority list, because the federal government is ready to help as soon as this government gives its okay and signs on the dotted line of the contract.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear a No.

The notice is tabled.

[Page 6284]

The honourable Minister of Justice.

[9:45 a.m.]

RESOLUTION NO. 3324

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 Bluenose II is known as Nova Scotia's sailing ambassador, and is recognized all over the world for her beauty and grace; and

Whereas Classic Boat magazine published a special edition to commemorate the 200th issue in February 2005, and marked this occasion by ranking the top 200 classic boats; and

Whereas Classic Boat magazine named Lunenburg's Bluenose II the number one classic boat as featured in its magazine over the past 200 issues;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House celebrate our sailing ambassador, the Bluenose II, for being recognized by Classic Boat magazine as the premier classic boat.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Dartmouth North.

RESOLUTION NO. 3325

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

[Page 6285]

Whereas the Salvation Army has an international reputation as a Christian organization that assists people in need; and

Whereas the Salvation Army, locally, often is first on the scene to assist persons with addictions, persons in need of shelter and persons who have been struck by disaster; and

Whereas the Salvation Army is celebrating its 120th Anniversary of Christian service and community outreach in 2005;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate the Salvation Army on its 120th Anniversary, and wish the Salvation Army continued success on its commitment to help persons in need locally as well as internationally.

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 Victoria-The Lakes.

RESOLUTION NO. 3326

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

Whereas on September 5, 1905, Local 1588 of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America was granted its charter to represent carpenters on Cape Breton Island; and

Whereas for 100 years, Local 1588 has been protecting the rights of workers in Cape Breton; and

Whereas Local 1588 will be celebrating it's 100th Anniversary at a gala banquet and dance on October 8, 2005;

[Page 6286]

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Local 1588 for 100 Years Proud & Strong.

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 Human Resources.

RESOLUTION NO. 3327

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 volunteer fire departments provide a variety of essential services to their communities; and

Whereas some fire departments go so far as to provide entertainment for their communities through their fire department band; and

Whereas the Bridgewater Fire Department established its first band in 1869;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House extend congratulations to the Bridgewater Fire Department Band for providing an excellent contribution to the musical life of the community since 1869.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

[Page 6287]

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Cape Breton Nova.

RESOLUTION NO. 3328

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 Tuesday, April 12, 2005, at the Joan Harriss Cruise Pavilion of the Sydney Marine Centre, the official launching of the Cape Breton Fiddlers Run was held; and

Whereas this event consisted of a youth run, marathon, half-marathon, 10-kilometre run and a five-kilometre community health challenge; and

Whereas the goal of the run was to raise approximately $40,000 for the Cape Breton Regional Hospital Foundation, which would go towards purchasing incubation equipment for the neo-natal unit;

Therefore be it resolved that Members of the Legislative Assembly congratulate the organizing committee of the Cape Breton Fiddlers Run, an event that will go a long way in promoting healthy and active living in our community, and one that will put Cape Breton on the running map for years to come.

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 in the House of the Liberal Party.

[Page 6288]

RESOLUTION NO. 3329

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

Whereas Delores Boudreau, a resident of Arichat, performed during the ECMA weekend at the Sydney Civic Centre for radio's Acoustic Café on the opening night of the festivities; and

Whereas Delores is a soloist whose music is a reflection of her Acadian roots; and

Whereas Delores Boudreau contributed her time and abilities to the 17th annual ECMA gathering by participating in the festivities surrounding the awards;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Delores Boudreau for her involvement in the 2005 ECMAs and wish her 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 member for Sackville-Cobequid.

RESOLUTION NO. 3330

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 on April 14, 2005, the commanding officer and all ranks of the 30th Military Police Company were present for the official opening ceremony of their new offices in Lower Sackville; and

Whereas Lower Sackville residents have a proud history of military service and now add a new chapter in the community's commitment to the Canadian military; and

[Page 6289]

Whereas the residents of Lower Sackville welcome the new unit to our community and look forward to working with all its members;

Therefore be it resolved that this Legislative Assembly congratulate the 30th Military Police Company on the official opening of their new location in Lower Sackville and thank the members of the unit and the community of Sackville for their proud military involvement.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Preston.

RESOLUTION NO. 3331

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

Whereas Dr. Ronald Lorne White has dedicated his life to bridging the gap among the diverse groupings of our culture and bringing together education and entertainment in one remarkable life; and

Whereas Dr. White has been awarded the Commemorative Medal for the Canadian Centennial, Queen Elizabeth's Silver Jubilee Medal, and the medal for the 125th Anniversary of the Confederation of Canada; and

Whereas Dr. White was inducted by the Black Cultural Society of Nova Scotia into the Rev. Dr. William P. Oliver Wall of Honour on February 12, 2005;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Dr. White and honour his lifetime of work to Nova Scotia.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver.

[Page 6290]

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Timberlea-Prospect.

RESOLUTION NO. 3332

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

Whereas Mount Allison's women's rugby team presented a calendar as a fundraiser for the team and breast cancer research; and

Whereas this calendar has been described as "tasteful and a very fine piece of fine art"; and

Whereas this project was coordinated by team captain Jen Lewandowski of Fall River;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature congratulate the Mount Allison women's rugby team on their excellent calendar.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Cape Breton South.

[Page 6291]

RESOLUTION NO. 3333

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

Whereas Sydney Council 1060 of the Knights of Columbus will be hosting the 85th Annual State Convention from May 20th to May 23rd; and

Whereas this year Sydney Council is celebrating its 100th Anniversary; and

Whereas 300 delegates will be attending this important event;

Therefore be it resolved members of the Legislature congratulate Sydney Council 1060 of the Knights of Columbus on their 100th Anniversary and wish all delegates a successful weekend at the 85th Annual State Convention.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Timberlea-Prospect.

RESOLUTION NO. 3334

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

Whereas the Nova Scotia Boxing Authority has no female representatives; and

Whereas the sport of boxing is becoming more and more popular with women in this province; and

Whereas the minister responsible could send a clear message to athletes of both genders that women are welcome on the Boxing Authority;

[Page 6292]

Therefore be it resolved that the Minister of Health Promotion initiate the necessary steps to ensure that there is a woman on the Nova Scotia Boxing Authority as soon as possible.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear a No.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Annapolis.

RESOLUTION NO. 3335

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

Whereas Saphire Barrette, a Grade 12 student at Middleton Regional High School, recently won the right to attend the National Commonwealth Debating Seminar in Ottawa; and

Whereas Saphire won the right to attend as a result of her outstanding performance at the Halifax Grammar School Competition; and

Whereas the National Commonwealth Debating Seminar will be held May 1 to May 6, 2005;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House join me in wishing Saphire all the best at the National Commonwealth Debating Seminar.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

[Page 6293]

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Cole Harbour-Eastern Passage.

RESOLUTION NO. 3336

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

Whereas CFB Shearwater is Canada's oldest airforce base and has been an active base since 1918; and

Whereas CFB Shearwater located in Eastern Passage, has both runways for aircraft and a NATO jetty that was once the base for the HMCS Bonaventure; and

Whereas the new federal government foreign policy includes the development of a rapid deployment force of approximately 800 troops with dedicated vessels and aircraft to allow Canada to deploy troops quickly to anywhere in the world;

Therefore be it resolved that this House support the use of CFB Shearwater, given its ideal combination of land, sea and air infrastructure, as the base for the new Canadian rapid deployment force when it is created.

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 West.

RESOLUTION NO. 3337

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

[Page 6294]

Whereas today is Earth Day and Nova Scotia has made progress in the areas of recycling and composting; and

Whereas Nova Scotia Power continues to spew carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide from its fossil fuel burning plants, despite the fact that Nova Scotia has the highest rate of respiratory diseases; and

Whereas Nova Scotia should be moving to add more protected spaces to maintain biological diversity, not delist wildlife sanctuaries;

Therefore be it resolved that the provincial government use Earth Day to reflect upon ways to protect the fragile nature of our planet.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear a No.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Glace Bay.

RESOLUTION NO. 3338

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

Whereas the Leader of the NDP has mysteriously come down with a case of amnesia causing him to forget that it was he and the NDP caucus who supported changes to the long-term care program, which now inflicts more pain on seniors; and

Whereas some of the new changes brought forward by the Hamm Government, with the blessing of the NDP, include increased costs for life-saving medications, ambulance bills, dental work and hearing aids; and

Whereas these changes . . .

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

[Page 6295]

MR. DAVID WILSON (Glace Bay): Would the Speaker wish me to start again?

MR. SPEAKER: No, to just continue is fine. Thank you.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Glace Bay): Whereas these changes are having a negative impact on our most vulnerable citizens in the province, low- and middle-income seniors;

Therefore be it resolved that the government realize the errors of their way and review the changes, evaluate their impact, and make all necessary adjustments so that low- and middle-income seniors are not left to suffer as a result of NDP opportunism.

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 Digby-Annapolis.

RESOLUTION NO. 3339

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

Whereas on April 1st and April 2nd the Digby Career Resource Centre, which is part of the Digby Area Learning Association, held a career fair for the residents of Digby; and

Whereas this event had 32 displays which included potential employers, including: the Canadian Armed forces; the Royal Canadian Mounted Police; Convergys; and, educational facilities, including the Nova Scotia Community College, Université Sainte-Anne and community agencies including: Digby and Area Recreation Commission; Human Resources Development Canada, The Digby Disabilities Partnership; and, the Basin Wellness Centre; and

Whereas well over 200 persons attending this event in the Digby Fire Hall were given the chance to explore potential employment and training opportunities;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate the Digby Learning Association, the Career Resource Centre and organizers Debbie Balser and Roxanne Gosson for their efforts in making this event so successful.

[Page 6296]

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, Public Bills for Second Reading.

PUBLIC BILLS FOR SECOND READING

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 160.

Bill No. 160 - University College of Cape Breton Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Education.

HON. JAMES MUIR: Mr. Speaker, I'm pleased to rise and begin second reading of Bill No. 160, an Act to Change the Name of the University College of Cape Breton and to Amend Chapter 484 of the Revised Statutes, 1989, the University College of Cape Breton Act.

I have a number of remarks I could make but, however, I think it was all said. It has been endorsed by the board of governors, the university has been using the new name since February, or something like that. So with that short introduction, I'm prepared to see it move forward.

[Page 6297]

[10:00 a.m.]

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

MR. GORDON GOSSE: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. On my constituency profile, as an MLA, I have the picture of the University College of Cape Breton - I guess I'll be changing that very shortly to say CBU and possibly put a new picture in there.

As I said earlier in the Legislature, when we debated this, there were so many important issues to Cape Bretoners that I'm glad this issue is behind us. I'm glad the board of directors have seen what the community wanted and decided this was in the best interests of the university and the community. Hopefully, now we can move forward. It's a beautiful university and I think the students who go there appreciate this, and they'll be able to market the university all over Canada, and internationally, and the university will move forward in a positive manner with the board of governors and the student union. Hopefully this name change will be a positive thing for many years to come in our community. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: Thank you. I recognize the honourable member for Glace Bay.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Glace Bay): Mr. Speaker, I want to congratulate the board of governors of the University College of Cape Breton and I want to congratulate the minister in finally seeing - I'm not going to say it, Mr. Speaker - in just finally seeing this was such an important issue to the people of Cape Breton, that I'm glad the minister and the board of governors have decided to change their minds and listen to the people of Cape Breton.

This institution means a lot to our Island. This institution has been and will continue to be one of the greatest institutions in this province. Indeed, it has shown that we can look forward to a great future in Cape Breton through our university. I'm proud to stand here and say that my son who will graduate this year will be attending Cape Breton University this year. He's looking forward to it, he's looking forward to attending a university that bears the name of the Island so proudly. We are all very proud of this decision and again I congratulate the board of governors for making this decision and the minister and look forward to no further debate on this issue. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: I recognize the honourable Minister of Education to close debate on Bill No. 160.

The honourable Minister of Education.

HON. JAMES MUIR: I welcome the positive and short interventions by the members on the opposite side. I'm not going to attempt to speak for the board of governors of the University College of Cape Breton - it still the University College of Cape Breton but the name does embody two important principles. First of all, it remains closely tied to the land

[Page 6298]

and the people who created it, at the same time Cape Breton University, speaks to the qualities of forward thinking and academic ambition.

All of these have combined to make a great institution and will lead to greater accomplishments in the future. I now move second reading of Bill No. 160.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for second reading of Bill No. 160. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

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

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 159, the Université Sainte-Anne - Collège de l'Acadie Act.

Bill No. 159 - Université Sainte-Anne - Collège de l'Acadie Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Education.

HON. JAMES MUIR: Mr. Speaker, I'm pleased to rise and begin second reading of Bill No. 159, An Act to Amend Chapter 31 of the Acts of 2002, the Université Sainte-Anne - Collège de l'Acadie Act. Etre le seul institution post-secondaire francophone dans le Nouvelle-Ecosse, le nouvelle Université Sainte-Anne joue un rôle de leadership pour la population acadienne et francophone de la province.

It plays a similar leadership role for Nova Scotia's Anglophone population wishing to pursue French language studies. This legislation completes a transition that began in 2002 with the merger of the Université Sainte-Anne with Collège de l'Acadie. Collège de l'Acadie, which I'm sure you will remember was a community college offering general, professional and technical training in French. The merger was an opportunity to maximize the breadth and reach of French language education to francophone and Acadian population dispersed across the province.

At the time of the merger a transitional board was appointed and the new institution was given the temporary name of Université Sainte-Anne Collége de l'Acadie. In January 2004, after consultations, the transitional board decided the name should revert to Université Sainte-Anne, as it had been known since 1977. The university has been using the shortened name since the day the decision was made and it has been well accepted by the community. This is not surprising since it has played a prominent role in our Acadian francophone

[Page 6299]

community since it was founded as the Collége Sainte-Anne in 1890 and - I might add to the Education Critic - as a teachers' college.

It was an innovator then and it is an innovator today. The Université Sainte-Anne is the first and only Canadian university to adopt a guaranteed employment policy. It is the first francophone post-secondary institution to have a paramedic program certified by the Canadian Medical Association. It has an internationally renowned French Immersion Program. Nova Scotia's Lieutenant Governor, the Honourable Myra Freeman, attended the Immersion Program for a few weeks in January 2004 and another distinguished Nova Scotian, my son John, attended the Université Sainte-Anne at Church Point for two years in the Immersion Program.

In 2004, the university was awarded a Canada research chair focusing on the oral heritage of Acadian and francophone communities. This is a tremendous achievement for a university of 400 or so students. Université Sainte-Anne is also a leader in distance education, serving students at seven different campuses. One campus opened in the heart of Halifax's student district in September 2004, and I was pleased to be a part of the official opening. Since that day, approximately 400 students have taken French as a second language courses there.

These are in addition to similar courses offered at all of the Université Sainte-Anne's campuses. The university has restarted a study of aquaculture at its Petit de Grat campus in Richmond County and next month the first graduates of the Master's Degree in Education of French as second language, will receive their diplomas. This is an invaluable service in a province where French second language teachers are in such high demand.

In an era where we have come to value cultural diversity so highly, Université Sainte-Anne is in the forefront of promoting French language and culture. It does this by its research activities, its social cultural activities and by the involvement of students and staff in communities lucky enough to host its campuses. Université Sainte-Anne makes a rich and colourful contribution of the fabric of Nova Scotia and its future holds nothing but promise.

Mr. Speaker, it gives me great pleasure to move second reading.

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

MR. WILLIAM ESTABROOKS: Mr. Speaker, I'd like to thank the minister for making sure that this important piece of legislation comes to the floor. More particularly we should recognize and congratulate the board of governors and the various other stakeholders that have been involved in this important piece of legislation as we look at the proud history of the francophone tradition in our wonderful province.

[Page 6300]

Mr. Speaker, I can assure you that as a teacher, I was always so pleased to have the opportunity to visit the campus and to look at the young people who went there for those immersion programs that were so well coordinated by the staff. Now I am, of course, aware of the fact of the prominent role that Université Sainte-Anne is playing in teacher training across this province. As you are well aware, one of the most popular and one of the most important programs in public schools in this province is French immersion and to qualify it by saying that we must have quality teachers offering this program, that this university is playing a prominent and an important role in training French immersion teachers for all grades and all subjects and that is certainly an accomplishment.

Their distance education program is gaining recognition across this province and across this country. They have played a prominent role with a number of recent progressive moves and I think it's a real recognition, as the minister did, to bring out those strong traditions that began in the 1890s.

I personally can recognize the accomplishments of the Université de Moncton and how the Université de Moncton made such a huge contribution to the Louis J. Robichaud years and the wonderful accomplishments to the Acadians of the Province of New Brunswick, my native province. I'm proud to say that I recognize the accomplishments of the Acadians of the Province of New Brunswick, my native province, I'm proud to say that I recognize the accomplishments. What is accomplished by the University of Moncton is now going to be even more accomplished by this small but mighty Université Sainte-Anne. I congratulate all involved in this very progressive piece of legislation. I look forward to their further future accomplishments in the fine young men and women they are going to train there under various professions. I look forward to this piece of legislation going through to the Law Amendments Committee where it would certainly have the support of the NDP Caucus. Thank you, Mr. Minister.

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

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: Merci, M. le Président, ça me fait plaisir de dire quelque mots aux projet de loi 159, Université Sainte-Anne-Collège de l'Acadie. Comme le dit le ministre dans ses remarques pour commencer je veux félicité le ministre pour ses remarques en français sur ce projet de loi et je l'encourage de continuer ses efforts en français et s'il ne comprend pas, peut-être mon ami, le ministre d'agriculture et pêche, peut lui dire que je lui envoi des compliments.

M. le Président, la raison que je voulais parler sur ce projet de loi içi c'est comme vous savez on avait l'Université Sainte-Anne-Collège de l'Acadie. C'était deux complètement différent institutions içi à la province. Université Sainte-Anne avait son campus qui se trouve à point de l'église et aux même temps le Collège de l'Acadie avait sept campus à travers de la Nouvelle-Ecosse et à l'Ile de Prince Edouard. Je peux vous dire que la Collège de l' Acadie

[Page 6301]

a jouer un rôle très importante dans les communautés acadiennes à travers la province et à l'Ile de Prince Edouard.

Moi même, chez nous, au comté de Richmond, on a un campus au Petit De Grat. C'est un campus qui es très important. Sa fait partie du centre de la Picasse, où on a la bibliotèque, Eastern Counties Region, puis on a aussi le centre culturelle. Ca fait toute partie de la communauté acadienne au Petit de Grat et puis j'en connais plusieurs des étudiants qui ont gradué du Collège de l'Acadie, plusieurs des personnes qui ont pris des programmes d'immersions et autres services en français aux campus de Petit de Grat.

Quand on a première rencontré avec le directeur André Roberge et le vice-directeur Mr. Allister Surette , ils voulaient amené les deux entités ensembles. La première probleme que je l'ai posé c'était est-ce que vous êtes prêts à proteger les campus qui existe à travers la province et à L'ile de Prince Edouard? J'était assuré qu'aurait aucune problème de faire certains que ces campus va être proteger. Alors, ils ont premier venue et ils ont dit que quand on va faire le fusionnement des deux entités, Université Sainte-Anne-Collège de l'Acadie, on va l'appellé Université Sainte-Anne-Collège de l'Acadie, les deux ensembles. Alors, notre campus au Petit de Grat c'était connu comme l'Université Sainte-Anne-Collège de l'Acadie campus du Petit de Grat. Aujourd'hui le conseil d'administration a fait le décision de faire la demande au ministre, de faire la demande à cette assemble, de faire changer le nom de l'institution que aujourd'hui ça sera seulement connue comme l'Université Sainte-Anne.

Encore, je prends cette occassion de faire la demande au conseil d'administration, de faire certain qu'avec ce change que n'oublié pas qu'il est absolument nécessaire de proteger les campus qui existe dans les communautés de Pomquet, Petit de Grat, Sydney, Halifax a l'école Beaufort, Chéticamp, Tusqet et l'un dans Wellington, L'ile de Prince Edouard. C'est absolutement nécessaire de faire certain que c'est campus içi sont proteger parce-que je voix un grand role dans nos communautés acadiennes.

Comme vous savez bien, M. le Président, notre province , elle es longue, deux bouts à l'eau, depuis ce trouve que pour la plupart les deux plus grandes régions de communautés acadiennes se trouvent à chaque bouts de la province. Alors, c'est important que ces campus continue à joué un rôle dans les communautés qui se trouvent pas mal loin du campus principal de l'Université Sainte-Anne.

Au même temps, je suis content de savoir que maintenant un élève au campus de Petit de Grat peut prendre des cours d'université. Maintenant qu'on à l'Université Sainte-Anne avec le vétille qu'ils sont entrain d'utiliser, l'éducation de parte distance, que c'est possible que maintenant que les étudiants soient siègé au Petit de Grat, au bout de la mer de Petit de Grat, en train de prendre les cours de universités. C'est un gros coup de vent pour nos communautés et je suis certain que c'est la même chose pour l'Ile de Prince Edouard et les plusieurs communautés acadiennes à travers la Nouvelle-Ecosse.

[Page 6302]

[10:15 p.m.]

Au même temps, le programme d'immersion maintenant se trouvent que ça commence d'être offrit dans nos communautés même. Je suis au courant, M. le Président, qu'il y a plusieurs des fonctionnaires à Port Hawkesbury, les fonctionnaires pour le gouvernement federal et provinciale qui profit des programmes qui sont offert au campus de maintenant serait connu comme l' Université Sainte-Anne au Petit de Grat. Je suis certain que c'est la même chose dans tous nos communautés qui se trouvent se campus içi.

Au même temps, je peux vous dire M. le Président, qu'avoir ces campus dans ses communautés joue un grand rôle dans le dévélopement économique, sociale et culturelle de nos communautés. Au même temps aussi, ça donne l'option à nos étudiants de rester dans leur communautés durant les années qui vont faire leur formation en éducation universitaire.

Alors, ça joue un grand role et puis j'espère que l'Université, le conseil d'administration, savaient dans les années à venir, il va voir des pressions économiques comme qu'il fait face à toutes les institutions universitaire içi à la Nouvelle-Ecosse.

J'espère qu'on ne verait pas la journée où quand qu'il y aura ces pressions économiques que les décisions sont prises de peut-être couper les services au campus qui se trouve dehors la point de l'église où que les services seront réduit. Alors, j'utilise encore cette occassion pour encourager le conseil d'administration, encourager le ministre de éducation, de faire certain qu'avec la nouvelle institution qui seront connu simplement comme Université Sainte-Anne, qu'on protégé ses campus, qu'on protégé ses communautés, qu'on protégé les étudiants qui font partie de ses campus à travers de la province.

Je veux encore prendre cette occassion de ne pas juste fécilité le conseil d'administration sous la direction du docteur Andre Roberge, mais aussi de fécilité les personnes qui font partie des conseils d'administration de toutes les campus qui étaient connu comme la Collège de l'Acadie, qui se trouve dans chaque communautés. Ces personnes içi sont des bénévoles, sont intéressé dans la promotion de l'éducation dans leur communautés, dans le dévélopement économique, sociale et culturelle et je veux les fécilité eux même et je l'ai encourage de continuer d'être impliqué.

Pour donner un example de l'impacte économique du campus dans les communautés rurales, ça fait juste quelques semaines qu'on a eu un annonce très important au campus de Petit de Grat. C'est un annonce pour un projet à faire avec les amends,c'est l'argent qui es venue du fédéral. Je m'attends que peut-être le ministre d'agriculture et peche va faire partie de ce projet à un moment donner mais c'est un projet important qui peut avoir un grand impacte sur la pêche de homard dans notre région et à travers de la province. Alors, j'espère que la ministre va prendre un intéret. Jusqu'a date, c'est juste le fédérale qui est impliqué. Mais au moins c'est un début pour le projet et j'espère que c'est un projet qui va avoir un future longue dans notre communauté et dans notre province.

[Page 6303]

Alors, avec ces commentaires la, M. le Président, je suis content que ce change va prendre place. Je veux prendre cette occassion d'envoyer mes meilleures voeus a l'Université Sainte-Anne, à leur campus à travers de la province, et je suis certain qu'a la fin de la journée que les changes qui ont pris place va faire cette institution plus fortes, plus formidables et j'espère qu'a la fin de la journée ça va tirer même plus d'étudiants, pas juste de la province de la Nouvelle-Ecosse mais de les lieux hors de la province et peut-être même les immigrants qui va vouloir venir faire leurs études en français, içi à Nouvelle-Ecosse, à travers l'Université Sainte-Anne.

Je sais que l'Université de Moncton a eu beaucoup de succès à tirer des étudiants des pays de l'Europe et des pays d'Afrique et j'espère que peut-être le ministre qui es responsable d'immigration va travaillé avec le ministre d'éducation et l'Université Sainte-Anne pour attirer plus d'immigrants içi à ce province. Alors, c'est avec plaisir que je donnerais mon support à ce projet de loi et je suis content que le ministre la ramener içi à la chambre aujourd'hui.

Mr. Speaker, I just want to finish by again congratulating the Minister of Education for his remarks in French that he gave the house today. This is an important bill, it's been a transition with the intent being that it is going to provide an even stronger educational institution, not only in the main campus at Point de l'Eglise but also in the campuses which are located throughout the province in Acadian communities which play such a vital role to our development.

I again want to highlight the concern that this merger will not have any negative impact on the smaller campuses. We know that the Université Sante-Anne, like all other universities, will be faced with economic pressures in the years to come and I certainly hope that at no point is there a reduction in services or in the amount of campuses for that institution, and I do hope the Minister of Education will work closely with them to make sure that this institution continues to grow and continues to be a strong force here in this province.

Again, I do hope that the Minister of Immigration will work with the Minister of Education to try to see that more students from foreign countries do come and study at this university. Université Moncton in New Brunswick has had tremendous success in attracting students from Europe and from Africa to their institution. I do hope that with these changes and in strengthening this institution we can achieve the same level of success here. With that, Mr. Speaker, I certainly look forward to this bill going forward, and to seeing Université Sainte-Anne become an even stronger educational, social, cultural and economic force here in this province. (Applause)

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

HON. CHRISTOPHER D'ENTREMONT: Merci, M. le Président. Je va premièrement commencer de remercier le membre pour Richmond pour ses vraiments bons commentaires sur l'Université Sainte-Anne.

[Page 6304]

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the member opposite for his words on Université Sainte-Anne. I want to congratulate the board of governors and the President, Andre Roberge for their foresight in bringing this forward to the Minister of Education to be debated on the floor of the Legislature today. I haven't been lucky enough to have graduated from Université Sainte-Anne, but my wife did, so I have to say that I did participate in lots of extra-curricular activities at Université Sainte-Anne over her course of time there, and know that it is a fine institution.

Cette initiative a commencer beaucoup d'année passés, comme vous savez l'Université Saint-Anne a commencer comme Collège Sainte-Anne et puis sa vue ce changement beaucoup d'année passés comme l'Université Sainte-Anne et puis d'entre vous qui connaissex l'histoire du Collège de l'Acadie. Vraiment, ça c'est quelque chose que devait commencer au début que l'Université Sainte-Anne aurait offrit des cours collègiales en régions comme le Collège de l'Acadie a fait. J'aimerais simplement parler un peu de l'idée de faire de votre éducation en région. Nombreux de questions est demandé de pourquoi est-ce qu'on n'a pas beaucoup d'étudiants dans les centres à Tusqet. Ca c'est mon proper vue sur les choses. Cette Université Sainte-Anne à Tusqet n'a pas d'étudiants à cause que c'est trop proche de la maison. C'est différent dans différent régions le montant de membre qui vont participer à des cours dans ces régions là.

My congratulations to Lisa Bertier who is the new Director at Université Sainte-Anne, Petit-de-Grat. She just went into function. I would like to thank Gabrielle LeBlanc for working a long time as the Director at Université Sainte-Anne-Collège de l'Acadie over the last few years.

This is a great piece of legislation to come forward. It is a great melding of two great institutions to better serve Acadians in Nova Scotia, and with those simple words I would like to take my place. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: If I recognize the honourable Minister of Education it will be to close the debate on Bill No. 159.

The honourable Minister of Education.

HON. JAMES MUIR: Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the member for Richmond and the Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries for their positive statements about the Université Sainte-Anne. It is clearly playing a major role for the Francophones and Anglophones who wish to improve their French here in our province and elsewhere. It's contribution to Nova Scotian culture is first-rate as well.

[Page 6305]

Mr. Speaker, with those few words, I now move second reading of Bill No. 159.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for second reading of Bill No. 159. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

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

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 152.

Bill No. 152 - Liquor Control Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Economic Development.

HON. ERNEST FAGE: Mr. Speaker, today in the House of Assembly I'm introducing for second reading amendments to the Liquor Control Act. These amendments address the issue of transportation of liquor in motor vehicles.

I am pleased to tell you that as a result of our proposed changes to the legislation, responsible drivers in this province will not be prosecuted for having unopened liquor in a motor vehicle. Sealed, unopened liquor will be allowed in any area of the vehicle; however we will continue to discourage drivers from having previously opened liquor, that is liquor that has been recapped or recorked, in their vehicles by clarifying the law in the Liquor Control Act - previously opened liquor cannot be transported where it is readily accessible to any person in the vehicle.

Further, these changes clarify the law by specifying how previously opened liquor may be transported in a motor vehicle, motorcycle, off-highway vehicle and other recreational vehicles - for example, in the trunk of a car or in the exterior compartment of a truck.

In addition, Mr. Speaker, the Act currently states that liquor can only be transported to a place of residence from the point of purchase. With the amendments contained in this bill, liquor will now be able to be transported to any location where a person is permitted to have or to consume alcohol. Of course it will also continue to be an offence to open or to consume liquor inside a vehicle, and these offences will be prosecuted as usual.

Mr. Speaker, I believe these changes will go a long way to providing some much-needed clarification on the issue of open versus unopened liquor in vehicles. I move second reading of Bill No. 152.

[Page 6306]

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

MR. GORDON GOSSE: Mr. Speaker, this is a good bill. It brings clarity to the transportation of alcohol in vehicles. This law is a law that caught up with common sense. Most residents of Nova Scotia are responsible when transporting liquor in their vehicles, and it was unfortunate that an issue had to come to light where an individual had been charged even thought the alcohol was unopened in his vehicle. I'm very glad that this bill is going through and hopefully it will bring clarity to the residents of Nova Scotia on what they can do when they're transporting liquor, but, again, I say most Nova Scotians are responsible when transporting liquor.

So I congratulate the government. This is common sense. This is actually catching up, clarifying, and making it a lot clearer for the people of Nova Scotia when they go through the drive-through stores and put their liquor in their vehicle that they understand now what the law is, Mr. Speaker. I thank you very much and I look forward to this bill going forward.

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

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: Mr. Speaker, just a few brief words on Bill No. 152, the Liquor Control Act. As has been said, it is a clarification of the law, and there was some confusion regarding exactly how the previous rules were to be applied. As has been mentioned, it took, an incident - ironically, I believe he was an ATV cameraman and it quickly became public just how the old rules didn't really make sense. So it brought about these changes and, fortunately, the government, the Minister of Justice, pretty much immediately recognized that the law just wasn't doing what was meant to be done.

Mr. Speaker, I think it is important to point out that in no way would these changes diminish or in any way put in jeopardy the very strict rules that our province has adopted against drinking and driving, and I think Nova Scotians have become extremely responsible in recognizing the importance of putting a complete end to that practice at all times. I think this bill certainly makes it clear as to how liquor is to be transported.

I remember there would often be arguments as to, if you had an open bottle of liquor, whether it could actually be stored anywhere in the vehicle to be transported and some would argue no, even if it's in the trunk, or wherever you put it, if it's open, it's considered open liquor and you could be charged.

[10:30 a.m.]

There was always confusion about that and confusion about whether you could put something in the backseat of a car especially in the case, and I believe it's what brought this all about was a pickup truck where, basically, you have a tiny compartment behind the seat, between the seat and the cab, which isn't very big and that's what brought us to where we're

[Page 6307]

at. So clearly these changes will, hopefully, clarify the rules and make it easier for our police forces to clearly understand as to what the rules are.

Again, it's an opportunity for us to support the efforts of Mothers Against Drunk Driving and to remind Nova Scotians of the perils of drinking and driving. Hopefully, this bill will bring some clarity and will make it easier for Nova Scotians to understand what the rules are. We will certainly be supporting this bill as it goes forward and look forward to any proposed changes to it.

MR. SPEAKER: If I recognize the honourable Minister responsible for the Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation, it will be to close debate on Bill No. 152.

HON. ERNEST FAGE: Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the members opposite for their comments on this particular piece of legislation. I do very much appreciate the support of the entire House in moving this forward because it is an important amendment that clarifies the issue of opened and unopen liquor and certainly is a common sense practical issue of if the seal has not been removed or the liquor has not been opened, it's an issue of transportation. So clearly the bill strengthens the definition of previously opened liquor and how it is to be transported in a vehicle.

So with those brief comments, I close debate on second reading of the bill.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for second reading of Bill No. 152. Is the House ready for the question? Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

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

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 148.

Bill No. 148 - Justice Administration Amendment (2005) Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Deputy Premier.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the Minister of Justice, I move second reading of Bill No. 148.

[Page 6308]

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

MR. KEVIN DEVEAUX: Mr. Speaker, this is a piece of legislation we've become used to in this House, at least under this government where we have, I guess for a lack of a better term, omnibus Justice bills. Sometimes there are little hidden nuggets in it. In this one I haven't noticed them yet, there may still be some ticking time bombs to come out, but nothing that I've noticed of yet. Based on our at least preliminary look before second reading, we don't see any particular problems with this. This is all good housekeeping changes to the legislation. I look forward to hearing at the Law Amendments Committee if there are any organizations out there that may be impacted by this and whether they have any concerns and then based on that, we'll see where it goes.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Richmond.

MR. MICHEL SAMSON: Mr. Speaker, again on the Justice Administration [2005] Bill, Bill No. 148, I've spent time speaking in this House expressing concerns about these Justice Administration Acts where the government would try to amend significant amounts of legislation under one bill. When the government had a majority, it was often that things would be slipped into a bill. While there might have been 30 changes, there may have been two that were objectionable and the rest were fine, yet it was impossible for us, as Opposition, when there was a majority, to be able to get the government to split the bill and instead saying that if you're voting against the bill, you're voting against all the changes but even if we were voting against the bill, they had a majority, so it didn't really matter anyway.

Fortunately, the people of Nova Scotia have sent this government back with a minority and the message right from the start, as far as us as Justice Critics, and I know my colleague, the member for Cole Harbour-Eastern Passage, will agree, was to send a message to the Minister of Justice that we wanted to be consulted prior to any of these Justice Administration Acts coming forward to make sure that there wasn't anything controversial located in the bill because clearly we are now in a position to force the government to split the bill or, even worse, to have to vote down a bill because of any objections that we might have with it.

In this case, I'm pleased that both in this session and the previous Fall session, the Minister of Justice did meet with the Justice Critics of both Opposition caucuses to discuss the bill with us beforehand. Not only the Justice Administration Act, in fact he's pretty much made it a practice of discussing with us any Justice-related bills he was going to bring forward. I want to commend him for that and would encourage all his other colleagues to do the same with their own critics. It makes it easier when bills come forward when you have had advance notice and you have a chance to discuss any concerns with the staff of the department and with the minister.

[Page 6309]

As has been mentioned by the NDP Justice Critic, there's nothing on the face of this bill that causes some concern but, again, the importance of the law amendments process allows any groups or individuals who have concerns with the bill to bring them forward to us. In the past, quite often, they've been able to find some concerns which weren't readily apparent to the Opposition or even to the government. That has allowed us to bring about changes to make the legislation even stronger. I'm not sure if that will be the result coming out of Law Amendments Committee with this bill, but the process is there and I do look forward to the bill moving forward and for the government to be prepared for any proposed changes to the legislation.

With that, Mr. Speaker, I will end my comments on the Justice Administration Act.

MR. SPEAKER: If I recognize the honourable Government House Leader it will be to close debate on Bill No. 148.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to move second reading of Bill No. 148.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for second reading of Bill No. 148. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

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

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 158, the Paramedics' Act.

Bill No. 158 - Paramedics Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Health.

HON. ANGUS MACISAAC: Thank you. I move that this bill be now read a second time.

[Page 6310]

The paramedics throughout the province are committed to providing Nova Scotians with high-quality paramedical care. These professionals are now supporting the creation of legislation that will play a role in guiding the future of the profession in the province - indeed, one of our colleagues is a very highly qualified member of that profession.

The legislation protects the public by requiring that paramedics meet standards set out by a self-regulated professional body. Nova Scotia has one of the best pre-hospital emergency systems in the country and this step enhances the level of care even more. Today we have over 63 EHS sites across the province and our presence is a comfort to the communities across Nova Scotia.

The proposed legislation will facilitate self-regulation by establishing a College of Paramedics with the legislative authority to regulate the practice of paramedicine. This is similar to how nurses, doctors, pharmacists and many other health professionals are regulated in our province. It is our belief they are in the best position to manage their own profession. We want to protect the public from improperly performed paramedicine and establishing legislation will help us meet this high standard.

The College of Paramedics' governing council will be comprised of eight professional members, four public members and, for the first two years, two doctors and a registered nurse. This council will have the authority to implement and enforce registration requirements and practice standards and address the concerns of patients through a complaints process. Under the legislation, the College of Paramedics will be accountable to the public as a regulatory body. All paramedics throughout the province will be members of the college once it is established. Following passage of the bill by the House, regulations will be developed and the Act will be proclaimed - a process that can take up to six months.

The Department of Health currently operates a registration system for paramedics to provide services through contractors of EHS, as well as other paramedics who seek registration. To date, Dr. Ed Cain, the provincial Medical Director for Emergency Health Services, manages this system.

The Paramedics Act will delegate regulatory authority and this function to the new college. The college will establish standards of knowledge, qualification and practice, and implement a disciplinary process to provide for the enforcement of these standards. These provisions are fundamental to the Department of Health's core intent to serve and protect the public interest and to render accountability for the deliver of paramedical care.

Mr. Speaker, I have not gone into a great deal of the history with respect to paramedicine in the province, because I would anticipate that our colleague will want to take the opportunity to do that, and I'll leave it to him. I do want to say that we have come a long way, going back to one of my predecessors, the former Minister of Health, Dr. Ron Stewart, who brought this forward, and we have today taken another major step with respect to the

[Page 6311]

enhancement of paramedicine in this province. It is with great pleasure that I move that this bill be now read a second time.

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

MR. DAVID WILSON (Sackville-Cobequid): Mr. Speaker, it's definitely an honour and a privilege to stand in this House today to say a few words on this bill. As a paramedic over the last almost 10 years, I've realized the importance of recognition, and the importance to recognize the profession and how it's evolved over especially the last 10 years. We've seen many changes in the system that we have today, and I must add I believe it is a better system today than it was a short decade ago.

I would like to just describe a little bit of what some of those changes were over the last 10 years because they're very important to the people of Nova Scotia, especially when it comes to the service and the skills provided by the paramedics in this province, and the comfort that I think all Nova Scotians should have when it pertains to emergency health services in Nova Scotia. Our paramedics are highly-trained, well-educated individuals, Mr. Speaker, and throughout this province they are on guard 24 hours a day, ready to assist their fellow citizens here in the province and assist any visitors who are in our province.

This evolution has seen many changes, as I said, Mr. Speaker, in the last decade. These changes, I believe, will increase the service and definitely be more accountable to the people of the province, which I think all paramedics want and definitely all Nova Scotians want. When you have a profession, especially in the health care system, you want them to be fully accountable to the people, the residents they serve. With the formation of the college, the public will have a better avenue to keep paramedics accountable to the residents they serve. I look forward to this piece of legislation going through and being enacted, and the creation of the college.

Mr. Speaker, many people have been influential to this day in promoting and really trying to emphasize the need to recognize the paramedic profession in the province. Many of the professions in health care, as the Minister of Health noted, do have a regulatory body, are recognized through a college, like the physicians of the province, the nurses of the province and the pharmacists of the province. Definitely, it's been long overdue for this government and for governments throughout the country to recognize the importance of the paramedic profession in the health care system. It plays a major role, especially when you talk about pre-hospital emergency care in this province. It's amazing to note some of the changes in that system and in what Nova Scotians can come to expect when in times of need they may need to call on EHS and the paramedics in Nova Scotia.

[Page 6312]

Mr. Speaker, as I've said, I've been involved in the profession for nearly 10 years now, and I had the opportunity to, as we call it, work in the old days, the old system before the implementation of a province-wide single operator. At that time, there were 52 private ambulance services scattered throughout this province and as a private entity these businesses were just that, Mr. Speaker, businesses. They did make profit from emergency health services in the province and I think that's one of the most important things and most important factor we need to make clear, especially our caucus and our Party believe in health care that we need to take that business aspect out of it. We shouldn't have companies making large profits off individuals and definitely in the health care system. So the move and the shift to change from 52 different individual operators to one sole operator was the step to take in the evolution of the system we see today in Nova Scotia.

[10:45 a.m.]

At the time I know there were some areas of the province that didn't want to see that but, Mr. Speaker, with the old system of 52 operators in the province, it really divided the province into areas. It was very much a territorial-type business when, I, working for Arsenaults Ambulance in Lower Sackville, would come to the city to the old VG Emerg or the old Infirmary site and bring a patient in and deliver the patient to the Emergency Room and on our way back to our area or our region of Sackville, if we came across an emergency, we could lend assistance to that person but, I tell you, we weren't allowed to transport that patient.

I think that's where, when we see today the new system where we could have an ambulance that came from Cape Breton, from Sydney to transport a patient to the QE II Emerg and if along their way, anywhere through the city, along the highways, if they come across a patient or emergency where they need to give their assistance and transport the patient, they can do that. It's a great system. We have one dispatch system throughout the provinces that allows different crews to speak amongst themselves to identify who is the closest ambulance to a call, which is very important in responding to a medical emergencies and trying to get the best outcome for Nova Scotia when they find themselves suffering an illness or an accident. So definitely the evolution of coming to a one-service provider was a very important step in this province. I want to commend many people, as I said, for achieving this.

One of the groups that was influential, I think, with this piece of legislation and I know that there are different aspects and different groups and individuals but I would like to talk a little about the Nova Scotia College of Paramedics. I know it may sound similar to the name of the college but this is an association of professional paramedics in the province, it was established many years ago by many paramedics who knew there was a need to have an association to address some of the concerns that the paramedics had but also the concerns of some of the residents in the province. Their mission statement was to represent and serve all

[Page 6313]

paramedics and their patients in order to preserve quality of care and enhance the role of paramedicine in Nova Scotia.

The reason for the creation of this association wasn't to deal with anything in the labour movement or to deal with wages and benefit packages, this was solely an association created to address the needs of the paramedics when it came to enhancing the role that they play in the province and, hopefully, increasing what they can provide to the people of the province. Also, to make sure that the people that the paramedics serve are protected.

The Nova Scotia College of Paramedics was and still is active in many aspects of enhancing health care, not only in Nova Scotia, Mr. Speaker, but throughout the country because the association is also linked with the Paramedic Association of Canada, which is a national body that represents all the associations throughout the provinces across this country and definitely is active in bringing awareness around changes to legislation like this one, not only in this province but throughout the country and also changes in legislation to deal with our profession in the House of Commons. Several years they ago participated in Lobby Week up in Ottawa where representatives of the association in Nova Scotia met with many MPs from all Parties across this country to try to bring awareness around the importance for government and for different departments to look at paramedics as a profession where you can go to seek knowledge about, especially, pre-hospital care and, definitely, health care.

The association really played an important role when on April 17, 2002, in Halifax, just down on the waterfront, we had the opportunity to host part of the Romanow Commission, and the president at the time of the Nova Scotia College of Paramedics, Mr. Jay Walker, who is a paramedic, was one of the gentlemen who presented some findings on where we think the outlook of health care in Canada should go. It was a very important step for our association which I belong to and had the honour to be a representative on the provincial executive as treasurer and actually was the first elected treasurer for the association. I spent many years working with the president and the other individuals in that association.

What was important with the creation of this association, Mr. Speaker, was that I think it was the first time that the paramedics in the province looked at having representation throughout the province. There were many attempts in the past to have associations dealing with paramedics in the province, but they seem to be limited to certain areas of the province, much like the 52 private operators that I mentioned. So with the creation of this association, they definitely broadened their scope and had opportunities for members from all health care regions to participate and be members of the executive.

I must add, Mr. Speaker, that today it's still up and running and are playing an important role in many of the functions in our community. That's the other thing I wanted to mention was that paramedics in this province don't just deal with promoting their profession and hopefully enhancing legislation for paramedics, but they play an important role in their communities. I know that the Minister of Education would be aware that paramedics in his

[Page 6314]

area, which is growing every year, had an open house at the base where they have a haunted house, Mr. Speaker, where they raise funds for different organizations throughout the province, like diabetes, cancer research, and many, many organizations that are hopefully trying to raise funds and awareness around different problems in the province.

So the college definitely played an important role and I can remember, Mr. Speaker, being invited, I think it was about five years ago, or maybe a little more, to a meeting with Dr. Ed Cain who was the Medical Director and legal representation from the government when government was first initiating possibly bringing this piece of legislation forward. Definitely the association played an important role with making recommendations to the draft copy of the legislation and I want to thank EHS and Dr. Cain for, I believe, accepting almost all of the recommendations that the association brought forward that they would like to see changed in the initial drafts of this legislation and implemented them.

Mr. Speaker, it just shows, I think, the input and the commitment from paramedics, including the Nova Scotia College of Paramedics Association in getting to this day. Like I say, it has been a long time coming for this type of legislation, to finally recognize a profession that is extremely important in the health care system in this province, and I realize through the process that it does take time but, like I said earlier, it's a very exciting time today that this legislation is finally being called.

The other organizations and people I just want to mention for a few minutes is definitely the Minister of Health at the time, in the early 1990s, Dr. Ron Stewart, who was the Liberal Minister of Health at the time, had a vision of where he would like to see the paramedic profession and the service in the province. Dr. Stewart had worked in many areas of the country, in North America, had the opportunity to go to California, and I believe he really revamped the LA County. EMS system had an instrumental role in doing that and well-knowledgeable in what a high-performance ambulance service could do for the population or for our community and he brought that back here to Nova Scotia. I would like to definitely thank him for his initiative in starting this evolution, I believe would be the appropriate word, of the EMS system here in the province. Other individuals, and I have to emphasize the fact that I don't think we would be here today without the support of many of the physicians in the province. They really supported the paramedics in initiatives . . .

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. Would the honourable member allow for an introduction?

The honourable member for Kings North on an introduction.

MR. MARK PARENT: Mr. Speaker, I thank the honourable member for allowing me to make this introduction. In the east gallery, it gives me great pleasure to welcome a class from the Northeast Kings Education Centre, Mr. Newbery's political science class, along with Trish Yule. There are 25 students and two teachers. I had the chance to speak to them in their

[Page 6315]

political science class. They have come down to tour the Legislature. I would ask those who are here to give them the warm welcome of the House. (Applause)

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

The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid has the floor.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Sackville-Cobequid): I too would like to recognize and welcome the students here today. I hope you enjoy the proceedings. Like I said, Dr. Ron Stewart played an important role in initiating what we have today in the province, and along with physicians, as I said, played an important role in driving this forward. Without the support of many of the physicians in this province, I don't think we'd see the skills and the drugs and the advanced training programs that we have in the province today, if it wasn't for some of the support of these physicians, physicians like Mike Murphy, who played an important role with bringing the early days and early initiatives to the evolution of the EM system in the province.

A couple of other physicians I would like to mention, and I know I'll probably forget a few, but definitely Dr. Dave Petrie, who was one of our medical control physicians in this province, has given a lot of his time and energy to the cause of promoting our profession, to increasing the skills that we use and the medications and the service we provide to the people of Nova Scotia, but mostly I'd like to thank the Medical Director for the whole province, Dr. Ed Cain, really, his vision of where we should be was important to get a lot of the initiatives that we have on the ambulances today.

As we know, today, and I would just like to clarify a little bit about how we have a registered body today and what it will look like tomorrow is that we definitely work under Dr. Ed Cain's licence, if you want to say, Mr. Speaker. He does have, in the works right now or there is in place right now, a way to recognize and hopefully evaluate paramedics and their conduct and competency. They do have a board or a committee that looks at complaints, and definitely reviews any concerns that Nova Scotians have when it comes to the medicine they may have received from paramedics in the province.

It's not a huge change from what we have now to creating this college, Mr. Speaker, but what it does is I think it gives a better avenue for the public to have input. It definitely will allow them to sit on the board and make recommendations and look at possibly addressing concerns that residents have or any complaints. The paramedics welcome this. They're well aware of the implications of creating a college. It definitely gives, I think, a better access for the public to look at potential problems or miss any problems with paramedics during their performance. I think they really understand the need for this and really welcome the idea of this easier and quicker access for public input on the safety of the residents of Nova Scotia.

[Page 6316]

Mr. Speaker, the other individuals I would like to make comment about are the many paramedics in this province who have worked and continue to work to promote our profession to the best of their abilities. In the early days they worked long hours and still had the energy to work after-hours to bring this piece of legislation and work on making amendments to this piece of legislation. They have to be recognized.

Also with that, I'd like to recognize the other professions in the health care system, Mr. Speaker, who have been great supporters of the paramedics in this province, the nurses of this province, especially in my area, and the nurses that I have come in contact with and worked with over the years, especially at the Cobequid Centre. They're one of our best supporters. The other associations like the firefighters of this province, the police officers of this province have all stood behind us in trying to evolve our profession to the point where we're truly recognized in the province as an important aspect of the health care system.

[11:00 a.m.]

I remember it wasn't too long ago that we found ourselves in a position where we had to make some difficult decisions when it came to trying to be recognized in this province. I know many members are aware of the labour dispute that we had many years ago and I know this government, especially since I've been a member and sitting in this House, has said numerous times they respect and are supportive of the paramedics, Mr. Speaker. It wasn't that long ago when the true colours of the government Party were shown and the lack of respect and the lack of support back a few years ago when we had our labour dispute.

Unfortunately, I was working the evening we decided to take those drastic steps to go on strike. I worked out of Sackville, the area I live in, the area my family and friends live in and many of my supporters live in and I was working that evening when I left my base. It was one of the hardest things I had to do was to walk out of that base knowing that I left my community, my family and my neighbours somewhat vulnerable to potential harm coming to them because I wasn't there in their time of need.

But, I came down here to this Legislature, I actually sat right above me and watched intensely the proceedings and the debate that was going on that evening. I remember some of the comments made by government members at the time. I remember what the Minister of Health said at the time and many of the members here. The one thing that stands out in my mind today the most - and many paramedics say this to me day after day - when the NDP were standing, fighting for our fair treatment in this province. I would definitely like to thank many of the members of my caucus for doing that at the time, especially the past Leader of the NDP, Mr. Robert Chisholm, who spoke passionately about our cause here in the Legislature. It was definitely encouraging for us to hear this from my caucus and I want to thank many of the members sitting here today who stood on their feet and supported us.

[Page 6317]

The one thing I do remember was when I sat just above me at that time, how the government members weren't really paying much attention. They were reading their papers, they were doing crosswords and really weren't paying attention to what we felt was one of the most important things in our lives and in our careers.

That's really one reason why I'm standing here today was the support and the commitment from this caucus during those times and the support they gave to us throughout the province in our time of need. As I said, that was a difficult time for us, but we surpassed that, we've come past that point now in the evolution of EMS in this province and I hope truly that the words spoken by the Minister of Health and many of the members and government members now about the commitment and their support of the paramedics are true. I hope we can go on and proceed to really recognize the paramedics of this province.

As we see in the title, Bill No. 158, An Act Respecting the Practice of Paramedicine. That's all the paramedics are asking for in this province for many years is the respect they deserve for the job they do and the job they provide to the people of this province.

I truly am honoured to stand in this Legislature as a former paramedic and hopefully support my former colleagues as much as I can. Definitely, the system we see today is much better than what we had in the past. I hope we can see in the future more development in the province. We have one of the best services in the country - if not in North America - with some of the skills the paramedics bring to the living rooms, the highways and the ditches in this province. Nova Scotians should be made well aware that they are receiving care beyond

most in this country, as recognized recently with accreditation, being the first ambulance service in Canada to be recognized for their high-quality service, not only just in the care they give to their patients, but in their fleet maintenance, and the training and education of the paramedics. I think it's important that we continue to respect and continue to work with the paramedic profession to promote them to be, like I say, the best in North America.

I would like to say that I do like this piece of legislation and I know that the Nova Scotia College of Paramedics have reviewed this and have given their endorsement with their announcement the other day with the minister. The president at the time, Mr. Mike Kellock, definitely is in support of this legislation, as I am, Mr. Speaker, but a couple of concerns that I'd like to bring forward revolve around - the setup of this college will create definitely a fee or a charge to the paramedics, and I understand that fee isn't in the piece of legislation. That's something that needs to come later with regulation and that part of the process when going through enacting a bill like this. I just want to emphasize to the Minister of Health and to government that paramedics need to be addressed and need to have input in this and that they come forward with a reasonable amount of money or a reasonable fee when it comes to the professional fees that paramedics are going to be paying.

[Page 6318]

Paramedics are well aware that the creation of a college definitely is going to result in cost incurred by them, but they fought hard over the last five, six, seven years to get to where they are at today, especially with some of the wages and benefits they see, and I hope that by enacting this that it doesn't bring them back a step. We need to go forward with this and we need really to recognize the service we get and compensate the paramedics adequately enough, and I hope that with the creation of this fee and the regulations that are going to be following this piece of legislation, the paramedics are truly involved in that.

I think that's an important part of this, because far too often we see with pieces of legislation that comes through government here in Nova Scotia, and throughout the country, that the last people they check with are the people that the pieces of legislation affect. I think it's time in this province, and definitely time across this country, that the paramedic profession is looked at as being individuals who can give input to great pieces of legislation throughout this country and in this province.

Definitely, I want to congratulate the government for bringing this forward. It's been a few years now and many years in the working, and many hours of paramedics looking over some of the lines in the piece of legislation, and I'm encouraged to see where this will take us down the road. I'm encouraged to see that we are finally standing up, our government is finally standing up and respecting the practice of paramedicine, and I look forward to the continuing commitment from this government to do the right thing when it comes to this profession. With that, Mr. Speaker, I want to thank you for allowing me to make these comments.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Cape Breton Nova on an introduction.

MR. GORDON GOSSE: Mr. Speaker, today in the west gallery we have a visitor, we have Adrian Gordon, constituency assistant for the honourable Minister of Energy, Cecil Clarke, taking in the proceedings today. I would like for him to stand and receive the warm welcome of the House. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: We certainly welcome our guest to the gallery today and hope he enjoys the proceedings.

The honourable member for Glace Bay.

MR. DAVID WILSON (Glace Bay): Mr. Speaker, I welcome our visitor to the gallery as well.

I'm pleased to rise on behalf of the Liberal caucus and speak to Bill No. 158, the Paramedics Act. This is a bill that is all about recognizing the profession of paramedicine and we as a province, I must say, have progressed leap years with respect to emergency health services. As my colleague for Sackville-Cobequid made reference to, he once worked for a

[Page 6319]

system that did not have paramedicine. A long time ago I worked for that very same system and, fortunately, for those who are very sick I chose another career.

Mr. Speaker, it has been a tremendous leap of progress that we've made, thanks to the foresight I must say in particular of a previous Liberal Government - and I don't say that glibly because certainly one of the foremost in this province in establishing this system of paramedicine was the former health minister, Dr. Ron Stewart. He gave us one of the best emergency systems in the world which is a comment which was once attributed to the former Health Minister in this current government as a matter of fact. It was from the vision brought forward by the previous Liberal Government to the professionals, both providing hand-on direct pre-hospital emergency and to those managing the program, Nova Scotians should be proud to have amongst us such a professional and dedicated group of individuals.

Mr. Speaker, it clearly speaks as to why we need to take the next step today by debating this piece of legislation. We have professionalized and licensed doctors, nurses and LPNs. So it's now time to extend the same courtesies and protection to both the public and to our paramedics as well. As again my colleague, the member for Sackville-Cobequid, made reference to, there was a time in this House when we had to stand and defend our paramedics. What my honourable colleague forgot to mention is the fact that the Liberal caucus was there to stand and defend paramedics at that time as well. As a matter of fact, I can recall, as a rookie in this House during the strike by paramedics, that one of the greatest speeches I've ever heard made in this House to date was given by the then member for Cape Breton North, the honourable Russell MacLellan. One of the greatest speeches I've ever heard defending the rights of paramedics was made in this very House by that member at the time.

Mr. Speaker, this is a bill about licensing, it's a bill about professionalism, it's a bill about protection, but I would caution the government that it's very important to pay attention to the content of a letter that was submitted regarding this bill by the College of Registered Nurses. They were very wise to bring to the attention of government their desire to play an active role in the development of regulations and, in particular, those regulations that pertain to the scope of practice. Government has to listen to the nurses and allow them to play a role in the development of regulations and I hope that the minister is receptive to their requests put forward in that letter and I look forward to hearing more from the minister on this matter.

Mr. Speaker, I would be remiss as well if I didn't, before I conclude my remarks today, pay tribute to Dr. Dave Petrie and Dr. Ed Cain for all their hard work and dedication to the profession of emergency health in general and to this piece of legislation in particular and I think that we, as legislators, owe both of those individuals a debt of gratitude.

In closing, Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the Liberal caucus, I am pleased to support this bill so that it can move along to the Law Amendments Committee.

[Page 6320]

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

The honourable Minister of Health.

HON. ANGUS MACISAAC: Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the honourable members opposite for their contribution to the debate. The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid gave a very interesting history and insight into the profession of paramedicine as practised in this province. Certainly his first-hand experience is something that contributes considerably to the enlightenment of members of the House with respect to this subject matter.

Mr. Speaker, I can assure the honourable member for Glace Bay that, indeed, we are cognizant of the desires of other professions to be involved in the process and that is why we have included a member of the nursing profession in the original board of directors that will be set up with respect to the governance of the college.

Mr. Speaker, unfortunately, the honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid chose to cast some aspersions across the way with respect to the behaviour of members of this House on a previous debate that occurred within the House. I would simply remind the honourable member that during the course of his very eloquent remarks here this morning, I noted that two laptops were open and being used on his section of the House. I noted several conversations taking place on his side of the House while he was speaking and for him to suggest that that behaviour is somehow inappropriate to occur on this side of the House but is alright to occur on his side of the House is not what I would consider to be fair comment.

Having said that, Mr. Speaker, I'm quite pleased to conclude the debate on second reading.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for second reading of Bill No. 158. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

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

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, would you please call Bill No. 161.

Bill No. 161 - Special Places Protection Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Environment and Labour.

[Page 6321]

HON. KERRY MORASH: Mr. Speaker, I'm pleased to move second reading of Bill No. 161, the Special Places Protection Act. In our green plan we've committed to protecting more of Nova Scotia's natural environment and we've had some recent successes, including the announcement last month of Gully Lake and Eigg Mountain as wilderness areas.

[11:15 a.m.]

The amendments will update the legislation, allowing us to designate new nature reserves and to do it more efficiently than we've done in the past. There are currently 11 in the province now. They total more than 3,100 hectares, and some are on Crown land and some are on private land. Like wilderness areas, they're protected from activities like forestry and vehicle use, and Nova Scotians are certainly welcome to visit them.

We're proposing re-establishing a committee with an updated membership and a slightly changed role to provide advice on nature reserves. We're doing this because we're currently restricted in terms of designating new nature reserves with our existing legislation. In order to designate a nature reserve, the Act requires that a management plan be developed first, and that a special places advisory committee assist in developing that plan.

These requirements make the process to designate nature reserves more cumbersome than it needs to be. Plus, there have been numerous shifts in responsibilities for the various special places covered by the Act. So, as a result, the advisory committee no longer exists, and in fact it can't exist as outlined in the legislation currently. So we're proposing to re-establish the committee in a structure and role that will support the protection efforts.

Also, our proposal is to remove the requirement for a management plan to be developed before a nature reserve can be designated. A management plan gives extra guidance beyond the statements in the Act to ensure an area is properly managed, but not all nature reserves require this. So making management plans optional and allowing them to be done once a nature reserve is already under the protection of the Act gives us more flexibility to protect land and to do it faster.

With these amendments, designating nature reserves will happen and can happen more quickly and more efficiently, so we certainly need the changes. Currently we have a number of Nova Scotians who have offered pieces of their own private land to be protected as nature reserves, but our hands have been tied because of outdated legislation. With this, we hope to update the legislation and make this a possibility. About 8.2 per cent of land in Nova Scotia is protected through the combined efforts of the provincial and federal governments, as well as organizations like the Nature Conservancy of Canada and the Nova Scotia Nature Trust.

We need to make these amendments so that we can protect more of Nova Scotia's natural treasures for our children and our grandchildren to enjoy. Mr. Speaker, I'd like to move second reading.

[Page 6322]

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Dartmouth East.

MS. JOAN MASSEY: Mr. Speaker, I would like to stand up today and talk about Bill No. 161. I did have an opportunity with the Department of Environment and Labour staff to be briefed on this bill a couple of weeks ago. They did explain to me that the reasons for doing this were - I'll mention some of the reasons as follows - that the way the bill was written it did present a barrier in that it took a fairly long time for the process to go from the beginning to end, that they wanted to make these changes so that they could add new sites and move them forward at a quicker pace.

They were telling us that right now the way the previous bill was written, it was too cumbersome and people who had private land in Nova Scotia found it quite a hardship to go through the process. These people have their own lives and families, et cetera, that they're dealing with on a daily basis. Apparently this management plan that they had to go through previously was quite long, drawn-out, and from my understanding there has not been any advisory committee for quite a while in the Province of Nova Scotia. I could be mistaken on that. I believe the reasons we were told that the way the bill was written, it was very specific as to who had to be on that advisory committee. It was getting harder and harder all the time for the government to get people on this committee. I can understand that because being on the Human Resources Committee for the Province of Nova Scotia, we do have an issue in this province of getting people on these various agencies, boards and commissions. I'm assuming this advisory committee was probably facing the same problems that I still see in being on this Human Resources Committee.

We were told that there is a backlog of perhaps maybe 70 or so areas that we may be able to move forward.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. There's too much noise in the Chamber. I would ask the members to take their conversations outside, please. The honourable member for Dartmouth East.

MS. MASSEY: As I was saying, I do believe staff told us that there's 70 or so areas that we may be able to move forward much more quickly than under the old process. I think that's good news for everybody in Nova Scotia.

The amendment will actually allow for the future protection of these lands also so that if the person that donates this land to the government for protection passes away - which we all will - it is guaranteed to be passed on as a protected area even if, say, their grandchildren end up with this land in a will or whatever and they don't agree with protecting this area, it's out of their hands and it will be protected. I believe that's the way they planned on having this go through.

[Page 6323]

As the minister did mention, the previous process was quite long and drawn out. I believe it could have taken anywhere from two years or more to go through this process with this advisory committee. From what he was saying the other day at the public information session that he held, it's now going to take somewhere between six and 12 months to go through the process, which is a lot shorter and hopefully these 70 places will move along quickly. As I said, the reason the government's looking at doing this is to protect more land on into the future for us and our children.

The minister can, apparently, through this new bill, formulate this plan through staff on his own without the help of the committee, although I'm hoping that we will move forward quickly in forming a committee because it's always good to have the public input. I'm hoping we will get public input from the actual communities around the areas that are going to come forward to look for protection.

The way I understand it is that the management plan would revolve around the uniqueness of each area that was going to be protected. The reason this bill has come forward is that some places are very remote and they perhaps don't need a very detailed management plan because they're not accessible to a lot of people. Then you may have an area that's very close to a public beach or somewhere that people can access it very quickly and therefore being encroached on by a lot of the public, it may need some form of a management plan. So, that was the reason for that part of the bill.

I believe the government does hope that this bill will actually bring more people forward in the province that think this is a good idea and that are willing to donate some of their land that they own to future generations. We know the people of Nova Scotia really do believe in their land and we do love this province and the land that we have been given.

Mr. Speaker, we know that recently the government has been doing its part in protecting one big chunk of land in Nova Scotia - the Gully Lake-Eigg Mountain-James River wilderness protected area. That's good news for us. As we all know, the landscape in Nova Scotia is changing and it's changing quickly due to various things like urban sprawl and the clear-cutting that goes on in Nova Scotia. We have a lot of roads running through the province now. There are a lot of quarries and such that really disturb the natural beauty of Nova Scotia. So this new bill is perhaps going to move us along a different road that we will follow in the future in protecting more land for everyone.

We have had a history in Nova Scotia of 400 years of land clearing and that has taken its toll on our wildlife habitat. We've suffered a loss of wildlife habitat in Nova Scotia and we do know that nature is under a great deal of stress right now in Nova Scotia. We have a lot of development going on in our coastal areas and we've had people here speak about that during this session and even very close in HRM we've had some of that disturbance. We're at the point now where nature really has nowhere to go and it's up to us to really put things in place that are going to protect our environment and the wildlife for our future children.

[Page 6324]

The Maritime Provinces actually do contain the most disturbed natural landscape according to the World Wildlife Fund's latest nature audit. We do know that we have in Nova Scotia a very fractured landscape which contains really patches of wildlife and nature. This government, I'm hoping with this new bill, will be able to maybe connect some of these patches together and I'm hoping that the Department of Environment and Labour actually does have a plan behind this bill so that they're going to maybe design some corridors, some wildlife and nature corridors, so that when you're looking at these possible 70 new designated areas, that they will look at that in a holistic way and maybe, you know, not have such a cookie-cutter kind of system that we do now. I'm very hopeful that our honourable Minister of Environment and Labour will see that and be able to move forward on that kind of a plan because we do need to save the best of what we have left now.

Mr. Speaker, as we're talking about this bill, I would like to also bring up the point where the department is moving forward on this bill to protect these possible 70 or so new areas, but at the same time it's like the yin and yang, they're reviewing our sanctuaries in Nova Scotia. I think they're looking at around 26 areas of protected Crown land that they're reviewing right now - Liscomb Game Sanctuary itself is over 60,000 hectares of land - they are looking at stripping that sanctuary status away from them. So we do have some very treasured areas in Nova Scotia that are now under review and I think if we're looking at adding areas, then we have to seriously look at why would we want to take sanctuaries away. I really question that.

I've had an awful lot of correspondence from people right across Nova Scotia and I'm assuming that the Minister of Environment and Labour also has had those same e-mails. I really did go through that on-line process that you can go through and you can see the information and you can read what they want to take off and what they add on because I will give them credit, they are adding on some areas, but I think, when I added up the numbers, and I could be wrong, more is leaving than what is coming on. It's disturbing to me, what I really found the most disturbing was the wording in that review that some of these areas contain no unique wildlife. I think in Nova Scotia most people would agree that everything in Nova Scotia is unique. Every living creature has a uniqueness of its own.

Mr. Speaker, I think maybe some of that wording needs to be changed and I don't think we can afford here in this province to lose anything that we already have tried to save and maybe we need some new management plans for these areas, but I really feel we just can't sort of throw them off with one hand and then try to add these 70 places on with the other hand. It doesn't make sense to me and I don't know if anybody else here would agree with that, but to me it just doesn't make sense that we're talking here today about a good thing, about adding 70 places on, and then on the other hand I don't understand why we're looking at removing places.

[Page 6325]

[11:30 a.m.]

Some of these sanctuaries were set up to protect maybe certain kinds of wildlife or a certain kind of habitat and I'm assuming that unless we've gone in and clear-cut these areas, or some drastic thing has happened, and if that has occurred - we shouldn't have allowed that to occur - but if that's what happened then we need to make sure that doesn't happen to the existing ones we have left, and for the wildlife that is there we do need to set up mechanisms to protect what is left in those areas.

So I'm hoping that today when we're looking at this bill it's going to jog our memory and let us remember that even though we want to do something good here, we can't forget about what we've already tried to do, because if we've tried to set up these sanctuaries and for some reason that department is telling us that they have failed in their efforts to really either protect them, keep them going when they set them up - something has occurred that has now made them change their mind to say that these places are no longer unique. If we're going to go ahead and protect these 70 or so different areas under this new bill, what has changed? That's the question. What has the government changed in their planning or management process that is going to allow us to do things differently? Maybe the minister can talk to me later and let me know what the department is going to be doing differently.

When I look over the notes that I just scribbled down here today that our honourable Minister of Environment and Labour has spoken about, certainly I can agree with him that we need to add more nature reserves, yes, if we only have 11, that's what he's saying, and that certainly these are places that I agree we shouldn't have any vehicle use on, and that we are going to re-establish the committee, but they are going to have new roles and that it is not going to be as hard to set these committees up. When he's telling us that they're restricted in designation now, that the management can come later, I do have to - well, that's fine to say, let's protect them first and then set up a management plan later, but if you look back at what's happened with our sanctuaries, that hasn't worked because I'm assuming they had some kind of a plan and the plan didn't work and now we're saying we're going to look at 70 new places and we're going to do the plan later because we want to be quick about this. We want to get these places designated because people want to donate them to us.

Do you know what I'm saying? I'm just saying that I just want the minister and his department to be very cognizant that the plan does have to come, even if it's a small plan and it's a basic management plan to protect that area. I don't want them just to leave that on the back burner and say well, you know, the bill is written in a way that we may never have to have a plan.

I think we do need a plan and, as I said, I hope that we do re-establish the committee because I do believe in public input and I think that's so very important, especially in the communities that would be affected by these future, maybe, 70 places. I agree it's a more flexible bill and it's going to move things along faster. I agree with him on that, and that it

[Page 6326]

hopefully will be more efficient and, certainly, if people do have land to offer, let's hear from them. I know that yesterday at the briefing the Nova Scotia Nature Trust group were in and they're very happy to see this because it is going to speed things along because they have had their hands tied, I believe, and the Nature Conservancy, they are, I believe, behind this too, and the Ecology Action Centre, we were talking to them yesterday.

Even though I think this bill is good, I hope today that I have pointed out some of the reasons why we can't rush into anything here because we are talking about future wildlife and nature in Nova Scotia, which I know I hold near and dear to my heart and I think all of us do here in this room. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Kings West.

MR. LEO GLAVINE: Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise on behalf of the Liberal caucus and make a few comments about this piece of legislation that I think has been long overdue.

I want to thank the minister and the staff of his department for a briefing, which gave us a very good understanding of where legislation has been and where it is moving. Considering that we just have 11 nature reserves in the province, this piece of legislation will help to streamline the process, and I think that is certainly a very good thing. The concept of a management plan is, again, a worthy requirement when we move forward to take a piece of land and move it into a protective state. I think that's a positive part of this piece of legislation. However, this, in fact, in the past, has been a stumbling block in moving towards a larger amount of protected land in Nova Scotia.

One of the areas that gives a great insight into how cumbersome the legislation in the past has been is, for example, MacFarland Woods, which is already one of the 11 nature reserves that we have in the province, now want to add additional lands to this reserve. This has now been some time in the making. Once again, this will allow the department to move forward in a more timely fashion for acquisition of land to go in conjunction with existing reserves. More importantly, it is going to open up the door for Nova Scotians who have had a tremendous interest in leaving a special and unique natural area for their personal legacy, for future generations.

We've been in a real stall period, I feel, with the way the committee has not been active and too many departments that had to try to work together to bring a new piece of land into the protected state. This now will leave representatives of the department but one minister, you won't have to have the involvement directly of each of the ministers. So I think this is going to be another way of facilitating protected lands here in Nova Scotia.

[Page 6327]

Certainly in our area, the Annapolis Valley, I know a couple of individuals with tracts of land who have wanted to do this, who have wanted to have a piece of land set aside for future Nova Scotians, and again have found the process to be one where a great deal of time is required in order to get this approved. I think more than anything this is going to be a signal to Nova Scotians that the province is indeed interested in protecting the special and unique areas that we do have. I think you'll see a number of Nova Scotians who will come forth with small and medium and perhaps even large tracts of land that can go into protected spaces.

My hope, certainly, is that this will not be a tradeoff, that sanctuaries such as Liscomb and Blandford will not be delisted and be lost for future generations. I hope that we can move in concert here, that the Wildlife Act as well as the Special Places Protection Act will allow, I think, for a considerable amount of new lands to come into protection. This is talking about future areas.

We have a lot of pressure on our natural spaces in Nova Scotia. When you consider that there are 50,000 hectares of land that are clear-cut each year. This is an enormous pressure point when you consider - as I put in a resolution yesterday - that only 0.008 of old growth forest remains. So, I think Nova Scotians are looking to the legislators to be more cognizant of the areas that we do need to protect.

With that, I know my colleague has a few comments to make as well. I want to thank the minister and his department for wanting to update and to give Nova Scotians, I think, a very streamlined approach to getting more land into protected spaces. With that I take my place, Mr. Speaker.

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

MS. DIANA WHALEN: Thank you. I wanted to take a moment to congratulate the government for bringing this forward and also to reiterate the importance of special places, of protected areas, of preserving natural lands in our province from one end of the province to the other.

My particular interest in rising today is to speak about the Blue Mountain-Birch Cove Lakes area which is 1,700 acres of land in the heart of Clayton Park and moving towards Timberlea and on to Hammonds Plains. It's a very large horseshoe of Crown land surrounded by private lands. At this point, in some places, it's boxed in by development because of the value of those lands and the beauty of them as well. There are many, many lakes and water courses that cross those lands. In the areas that are privately owned, there's a big demand to build homes and expand the City of Halifax in that direction.

As a former city councillor, I was there and heard the discussions about a lot of new subdivisions that were being proposed and many times a subdivision coming before HRM council would be 1,000 new homes or 1,000 new units and lots being developed. So the

[Page 6328]

development pressure is very great. In my own district of Clayton Park, in that riding we've developed right up to the Bicentennial Highway. A big question among my residents and citizens there is, when is it going to jump the highway and begin the very same dense population on the other side of the highway?

Also in that area, we have Bayers Lake Business Park which still has a lot of room for expansion. For the knowledge of the House, the Crown lands begin directly behind Bayers Lake Business Park. In fact, you can park at Kent Building Supplies and go straight into the woods behind there and within a few steps you're on Crown lands. People aren't aware just how close that large piece of wilderness is to a very large population of people who could enjoy it in future.

Some months ago, actually in the last session of the House in the Fall, I had introduced an amendment to the Wilderness Areas Protection Act asking that these lands - the Blue Mountain-Birch Cove Lakes lands - be included in that Act as an amendment to the Act so that they would get proper protection. The reason I'm raising it again today is perhaps that they should be under the Special Places Protection Act. All I know is that part of that land is probably the number one area that's threatened within all of the Crown lands in HRM.

The reason I'm focusing on HRM is that development pressure within our municipality is creating a hunger for land and also escalating the value of that land to the point where it becomes very attractive as an asset to the government. Sitting under the designation of just being controlled by the Department of Natural Resources, as we know, land can be logged and mined and used for other purposes even though it's Crown owned. What I would like to see is that the land that's under the most development pressure and has the most benefit to the largest number of people for our future, be looked at as a critical area for our members and the government to consider in a special category.

In other words, what I am suggesting is that all of the Crown land in the urban core of HRM - this would be considered urban core, in the Timberlea area there are sewer and water services and they are taxed as an urban core community - and I believe that land that close to thousands of people could be such an asset to the future, in terms of our health, recreational opportunities and environment, in terms of improving our environment. I think it needs to be looked at specially, and I am urging the government to consider it again in terms of making some sort of special designation and acknowledgement of the pressure that's on those lands and the importance that they will play in the future.

[11:45 a.m.]

That is not to diminish the importance of special places around our province, because I know in every community you go to, and we've talked today about the Blandford Peninsula, I know that although the population there is much smaller that those lands are accessible to many and very important to the communities in which they are located. I'm not suggesting

[Page 6329]

that we don't look at special places elsewhere, I simply want to sound the alarm that within our urban core there are Crown lands, that are becoming ever more valuable in terms of their dollar value because they are very developable. The development community is very interested in acquiring more lands in that part of Nova Scotia, in the mainland part of Halifax, which, as I've described, is just the upper part of the Clayton Park riding. That development pressure will continue, because we've had a lot of growth in our city.

I can say as a 15-year resident of Clayton Park West, it's amazing to see how quickly an entire community can unfold and materialize. When I moved there, there were only a few houses in Clayton Park West, and 15 years later you have a community of approximately 10,000 people living just within the boundaries Dunbrack, Lacewood and the Bicentennial Highway. So the development comes fast and furiously, and it's a good thing. It means that our city is growing, that there are jobs and there are reasons for people to be moving here. At the same time, the people I'm talking to who are those newcomers and some of the residents who've lived there for a longer period of time, are asking that we take steps here in the Legislature to look down the road and recognize the value of having open wilderness spaces in our area. We don't just want ballfields and that sort of thing, we want places that are natural that our people can go to.

As I say, with a short walk from Bayers Lake Business Park, you can be into beautiful, pristine lakes, where people go to swim, to picnic, and in the Winter to skate. It's just a gem to have it so close to so many people. It should be mentioned that as a province we have probably the second-lowest, I think, percentage of Crown land in our entire province, I believe P.E.I. is the only one with less Crown land. It is because, as the member for Dartmouth East mentioned, we've had 400 years of occupation, living in this province and clearing land and commerce and so on, and therefore we've lost a great deal of our public land that should be there for the public good and for the future.

Again, I do commend the government for looking at advancing the cause of special places and streamlining the process to allow these lands to be designated. I think we're at a crisis point in terms of getting lands put under proper protection so that we can really have time to look to the future about how these lands will be used and how important they are. I can imagine in this particular area, many people will think, oh, that's far away, that's out of sight, but if you consider again how quickly the Clayton Park riding has grown and how quickly Hammonds Plains has grown and Timberlea, it will not be long before all those lands are totally hemmed in by development.

If we allow that value, as it grows, and the land becomes more valuable, it becomes very tempting to use that land as well to trade off for other purposes, to sell it because it can bring in good money to the province for some other project or to trade it off for another interest in another part of the province. In fact, a number of years ago the land was being seriously considered by the government for a trade-off for Cape Split. That's a very important public place, as well. Everybody loves the hiking and the view is majestic. It's a wonderful

[Page 6330]

landmark and feature in our province, and I think Cape Split should be publicly owned, however, I object, and I'm glad to see the government thought more wisely of it, they did not, at the end of the day, trade off lands in Halifax to accomplish that goal, but the temptation will always be there, unless the land is properly designated, unless it gets put under the protection of an Act that means it has been recognized as special, unique, important to our future.

In that category, any such discussions about sale or trading or loss of public lands would come under public scrutiny, because it would become something the public would then have more involvement in, just as we have had a lot of public consultation about the game sanctuaries and about the other lands that have been discussed. At least in that category, because they were special areas as game sanctuaries, the public has had an opportunity to know what the government is thinking of and to respond and to let you know how much it means in terms of their lifestyle and their future and their hopes for their own children having access to those public lands.

Again, I think it is a positive thing to streamline the process, to re-establish the special places advisory committee. I think all of those are very laudable and again I would like to suggest that all of the public lands within the urban core of Halifax Regional Municipality be seriously considered as hot spots for development and is land that should be right now set aside under a special provision so that no land will be lost in the next few years when we're experiencing such rapid development. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Hants East.

MR. JOHN MACDONELL: Mr. Speaker, I'll be brief. I have to say that I appreciate the remarks from the member for Halifax Clayton Park. I think for all members of the House that we should pay attention to areas in the province that are developing fairly rapidly, HRM definitely is that area. Certainly part of my constituency and what we refer to as the corridor from Enfield to Shubenacadie has seen very rapid growth in the past few years and this issue of protecting spaces is a very important one, because once they're gone there's no getting them back, and if there isn't a plan to ensure that there are some protected areas - and there will always be a conflict, there will always be those who will see some gain to themselves, if they could develop those pieces of land and it's incumbent upon governments to ensure that that land is kept for the greater good, which is for all the people in the province or in the city or for whatever particular area.

I want to applaud the government for the changes they've made and their work on this Special Places Protection Act . . .

[Page 6331]

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please. Will the honourable member allow for an introduction? Thank you.

The honourable member for Halifax Clayton Park on an introduction.

MS. DIANA WHALEN: Mr. Speaker, I should have done this when I was up earlier but I wasn't aware of it. In the gallery today we are very happy to have with us some students from Clayton Park Junior High School. They are Grade 9 students. I think there are 17 with us today and they're with their teachers, Jonathan Murphy and Robert de la Cheviotiére. I wonder if you could stand and be recognized and welcomed to the House. (Applause)

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

MS. WHALEN: I do thank the member for Hants East for allowing me to interrupt, thank you very much.

MR. MACDONNELL: Thank you and welcome to the guests in the gallery.

I am pleased that the government has made this move to make this process less cumbersome and perhaps more encouraging for anyone who is considering having their land given special protection for generations to come. What I would like say to the government is that the government has a responsibility on its own to protect land and the government has a responsibility - actually I would encourage them, whenever possible, to add to their Crown holdings., but my fear obviously would be that what the government does add to its Crown holdings then the government has the right do with it as it sees fit and I would not be encouraging the government to add to its Crown holdings to encourage more clear-cutting on those holdings, but I think that in one of the interests of the people of Nova Scotia would be that the government adds to its Crown holdings for all Nova Scotians.

As far as protected spaces go in this province, there is a national target of 12 per cent - and that's the minimum - and we presently are at 8 per cent, so the province can go a long way in terms of setting aside those areas that would be deemed special and should be protected, and to this point actually there doesn't seem to be a great appetite on the part of the government to do very much of that.

James River, Eigg Mountain, the announcement the Minister of Environment had made a couple of weeks ago is a very positive step and I know the people who have been lobbying for this for some time are very pleased. I'd be very interested when the minister finally gets all the boundaries and the work done on those spaces to really see that get finalized.

[Page 6332]

That's a big step and an important step and it has not been made clear, I think, to us and to Nova Scotians what kind of trade-offs or arrangements were made. I know there were some concerns over Crown allocations to some of the mills that would have had access in that area and I think we'd like to know just what exactly that means for Nova Scotians and for other areas that we'd like to see protected. I don't think we're interested in seeing a trade-off that we save those but we annihilate some other sensitive area.

The Minister of Natural Resources would be the one most aware of the present review that's going on on the nature reserves and wilderness areas and sanctuaries. We're quite concerned about his department's comments around the delisting of these areas and that they don't serve the features they were first designed for. The minister should be aware and I think all Nova Scotians would agree, at the time those sites were set aside to be designated as unique, as sanctuaries and as wildlife management areas, we had a fair bit of wilderness in Nova Scotia. That was at a time when the percentage of the population that was more rural was much greater. They had a much closer connection to the wilderness and because of that, even in those times when we had lots of wilderness area, they saw a need to have those areas set aside.

Now, in the 21st Century when we have significant clear-cutting in the province, we have much more development in the province and much greater pressure on wilderness areas, that the province would actually look at delisting these areas at a time when we would require greater protection for them. I cannot understand the minister's view that would indicate that perhaps these should be delisted and it would certainly be our hope that the government would go in the opposite direction and offer greater protection of these areas, in particular because they're already under the Crown.

So, with those few comments, I'll take my seat and listen to whatever other members want to say.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Halifax Atlantic.

MS. MICHELE RAYMOND: Mr. Speaker, I'd like to move adjournment of the debate until the following day.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

Order, please.

Order, please. Motion to adjourn debate.

Is it agreed?

[Page 6333]

It is not agreed.

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

The honourable Minister of Environment and Labour.

HON. KERRY MORASH: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I certainly appreciate the comments made by the members opposite. I know we've had some briefings and information and I encourage them to contact the department if they have any other questions as we move this through. I do appreciate the comments that were made and I would like to close debate on Bill No. 161, and I so move second reading.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for second reading of Bill No. 161. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

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

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I move that the House do now rise to meet again on Monday at the hour of 4:00 p.m. The House will sit until 10:00 p.m. The order of business will be Public Bills for Second Reading and Committee of the Whole House on Bills.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is that the House adjourn to 4:00 p.m. on Monday.

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The House is adjourned until 4:00 p.m. Monday.

[The House rose at 12:00 noon.]

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NOTICES OF MOTION UNDER RULE 32(3)

RESOLUTION NO. 3340

By: Mr. Keith Colwell (Preston)

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

Whereas Dolly Williams has been an activist and volunteer in her community, beginning when she was a little girl in the 4-H Club; and

Whereas provincially, nationally and internationally, she loves being involved and doing for others by working as a motivator and self-esteem trainer, conducting workshops and facilitation on Anti-Racism and Violence in the Workplace, and employing carpenters and other workers from the Black community, enabling them to start their own businesses; and

Whereas Ms. Williams was inducted by the Black Cultural Society of Nova Scotia into the Rev. Dr. W.P. Oliver Wall of Honour on February 12, 2005;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate Ms. Williams, and honour her for her lifelong work and service to her community.

RESOLUTION NO. 3341

By: Mr. Keith Colwell (Preston)

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

Whereas Dr. Wanda Thomas Bernard, Director of the Maritime School of Social Work at Dalhousie University, is highly regarded for her work in racial and cultural diversity in social work education and in her community; and

Whereas Dr. Bernard is a thoughtful leader who has generously shared her expertise in family and social development with local, provincial and national organizations, notably as a founding member of the Association of Black Social Workers, and was appointed to the Order of Canada on February 8, 2005; and

Whereas Dr. Bernard was inducted by the Black Cultural Society of Nova Scotia into the Rev. Dr. W.P. Oliver Wall of Honour on February 12, 2005;

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Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate and honour Dr. Bernard.

RESOLUTION NO. 3342

By: Mr. Leo Glavine (Kings West)

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

Whereas 14-year-old Patricia Hudson, a western Kings County figure skater who attends West Kings District High School and trains with the Greenwood Skating Club, won a gold medal in the Bronze Triathlon at the Nova Scotia Junior Provincial Figure Skating Championships; and

Whereas Ms. Hudson's top standing at the provincial level qualified her to represent the Province of Nova Scotia at the Star Skate Junior National Championship held March 31st through April 3rd in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, where she secured a sixth place finish against her peers from across the country;

Therefore be it resolved that in view of her excellence in the sport of figure skating in which both her enthusiasm and dedication serve as a positive role model for other young Nova Scotians, the members of this House acknowledge and congratulate Miss Patricia Hudson on her provincial and national awards and achievements, and thank her for representing the Province of Nova Scotia in such an exceptional manner.

RESOLUTION NO. 3343

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:

Whereas Halifax West students Jennifer Davies, Heather Phelan, Auyon Siddiq and Priyanka Singh, along with teacher/adviser Sandra Starratt, have worked with the Halifax West World Involvement Committee to raise awareness of global issues throughout their school; and

Whereas the committee has formed a relationship with the Nova Scotia Gambia Association and is contributing to the building of a daycare centre for rice field workers in Gambia; and

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Whereas the Nova Scotia Gambia Association has its roots in Halifax West where Executive Director Burris Devanney was principal, and office manager June Boswell served as a guidance counsellor, so it is only fitting that the Halifax West students are now working to assist their cause;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House acknowledge the hard work and dedication shown by the Wold Involvement Committee members, and wish them every success in future endeavours.

RESOLUTION NO. 3344

By: Mr. Keith Colwell (Preston)

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

Whereas on January 1, 2005, the Community Policing Office of Cole Harbour started their first Seniors Safety Program for communities from Eastern Passage to Ship Harbour; and

Whereas the program will highlight Vial of Life, in which small prescription vials and a medication sheet can be placed in the senior's refrigerator for use by emergency personnel; and

Whereas the RCMP will also set up a voluntary registration for seniors where their safety can be monitored in the event of a large-scale emergency;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate the RCMP for their efforts in making our community a safer place for our seniors.

RESOLUTION NO. 3345

By: Mr. Harold Theriault (Digby-Annapolis)

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

Whereas on April 2nd the Weymouth and Area Board of Trade, with the support of a dedicated volunteer base, launched the Window on Weymouth television station, call sign WOW, on Rush Communications Channel 2; and

Whereas the name of the station was suggested by Brandi Jenkins of Saint Mary's Bay Academy from all the contest entries; and

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Whereas this station will be a valuable asset to the citizens of Weymouth and the surrounding area by providing content that will focus on the events and interests of the residents of these communities;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate the Weymouth and Area Board of Trade and Rush Communications for their foresight, and applaud the efforts of all the volunteers who are contributing to this worthwhile initiative.

RESOLUTION NO. 3346

By: Mr. David Wilson (Glace Bay)

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

Whereas May 2nd to May 8th marks the 9th Annual National Hospice Palliative Care Week; and

Whereas this year's theme, The Many Faces of Caregiving, recognizes the many forms of caregiving provided by health professionals, pastoral care, volunteers, family and friends; and

Whereas during this week, the caregivers from across Canada reach out to their communities and support one another as well as celebrate, recognize and share the achievements;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this Legislature extend their appreciation to the caregivers of the Nova Scotia Hospice Palliative Care Association and the Hospice Palliative Care throughout Canada.

RESOLUTION NO. 3347

By: Mr. David Wilson (Glace Bay)

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

Whereas May 1st to May 7th is the North American Occupational Safety and Health Week; and

Whereas the purpose of this event-filled week is to focus the attention of the employers, employees, the general public and all partners in occupational health and safety on preventing illness and injury in the workplace; and

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Whereas workers' compensation, the Nova Scotia Department of Environment and Labour, and Human Resources and Skills Development Canada have jointly sponsored awards to individuals and groups who have made a significant positive impact on occupational safety and health in the workplace and in our communities;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate the recipients of the North American Occupational Safety and Health Week Awards, and wish the committee every success during their events.