The Nova Scotia Legislature

The House adjourned:
June 16, 2017.

Hansard -- Mon., June 15, 1998

First Session

MONDAY, JUNE 15, 1998

TABLE OF CONTENTS PAGE
PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS:
Bus. & Cons. Serv. - Weymouth: Motor Vehicle Examiner - Provide,
Mr. G. Balser 1305
NOTICES OF MOTION:
Res. 664, Health - Cobequid Multi-Service Centre Foundation:
Commitment - Congrats., Mr. J. Holm 1306
Vote - Affirmative 1306
Res. 665, Agric. - Col. Co.: Farmers Commitment - Commend,
Mr. B. Taylor 1307
Vote - Affirmative 1307
Res. 666, Lbr. - Metro Transit (HRM): Negotiator - Flexibility Permit,
Mr. R. Chisholm 1307
Vote - Affirmative 1308
Res. 667, Health/Commun. Serv.- Glace Bay: Seniors/
Disabled Residents - Access-Van Provide, Dr. H. Bitter-Suermann 1308
Res. 668, Educ. - Cuts: Children Effect - Condemn, Ms. E. O'Connell 1309
Res. 669, Educ. - Col.-East Hants Reg. Library (Truro Branch):
Summer Prog. - Congrats., Mr. J. Muir 1309
Vote - Affirmative 1310
Res. 670, Sysco - Tar Ponds/Coke Ovens: Clean-up -
Responsibility Accept, Ms. Helen MacDonald 1310
Res. 671, Nat. Res. - Nat. Gas: Commun. (W[N.S.]) - Access Support,
Mr. J. Leefe 1311
Res. 672, DFO - TAGS: Replacement - Funding Inadequate Condemn,
Mr. John Deveau 1311
Res. 673, Fin. - Fiscal Mgt.: Sound - Commend, Mr. G. Fogarty 1312
Res. 674, Educ. - Cumb. Co.: Students-Medal (Lt. Gov.) - Congrats.,
Mr. M. Scott 1313
Vote - Affirmative 1313
Res. 675, Senate (Can.) - Boston Bruins: Membership - Consider,
Mr. W. Estabrooks 1314
Res. 676, Environ. - Clean N.S.: Great N.S. Pick Me Up - Thanks,
Mr. J. DeWolfe 1314
Vote - Affirmative 1315
Res. 677, HRM - Election (Dist. 14): Candidates - Congrats.,
Mr. H. Epstein 1315
Vote - Affirmative 1316
Res. 678, Agric. - Forestry Exhibition (N.S.) [Lawrencetown]:
Organizers - Congrats., Mr. G. Balser 1316
Vote - Affirmative 1316
Res. 679, Health - Hepatitis C: Compensation (Cycle of Conscience) -
Joey Hache Salute, Ms. Maureen MacDonald 1317
Res. 680, Nat. Res. - Wolfville Arbor Day Comm.: Award (Internat.) -
Congrats., Mr. G. Archibald 1317
Vote - Affirmative 1318
Res. 681, Lbr. - Westray Employees: Severance - Payment Urge,
Mr. C. Parker 1318
Res. 682, MADD (Can.) - Volunteer of the Year:
Geraldine Dedrick (Hfx.) - Congrats., Mr. G. Archibald 1319
Vote - Affirmative 1319
Res. 683, Health - AIDS: Victims - Support Increase, Mr. P. Delefes 1320
Res. 684, Sports - NHL: Players (N.S. [3]) - Contracts Congrats.,
Dr. J. Hamm 1320
Vote - Affirmative 1321
Res. 685, C.B. Nova MLA - UFO Info.: Guido Moosbruger - Contact,
Mr. F Corbett 1321
Res. 686, Commun. Serv. - Developmental Centre: Funding Inequities -
Address, Mr. J. Muir 1321
Res. 687, DFO - Tags: Replacement - Adequacy Ensure,
Mr. R. Chisholm 1322
Res. 688, Fish. - Lady Jeanelle Crew: Rescue (19/12/96) - Congrats.,
Mr. N. LeBlanc 1323
Vote - Affirmative 1324
Res. 689, Environ. - Sackville River: Clean Up - Participants Thank,
Mr. J. Holm 1324
Vote - Affirmative 1324
Res. 690, Econ. Dev. & Tourism - Bluenose II: Summer (Atl. Coast) -
Ensure, Mr. G. Balser 1325
Res. 691, MADD (Can.) - Volunteer of the Year:
Geraldine Dedrick (Hfx.) - Congrats., Ms. E. O'Connell 1325
Vote - Affirmative 1326
Res. 692, Educ. - Windsor Forks DS: Students Emerald Green
Status (SEEDS) - Congrats., Mr. J. DeWolfe 1326
Vote - Affirmative 1327
Res. 693, Gaming - VLTs: Negative Effect - Stem,
Ms. Helen MacDonald 1327
Res. 694, Transport. & Pub. Wks. - Employees (Seasonal Works):
Layoff - Hardship Recognize, Mr. B. Taylor 1328
Res. 695, DFO - Northern Shrimp Quota: Fair Deal Methodology -
Premier Explain, Mr. John Deveau 1328
Res. 696, Housing & Mun. Affs. - Planning Dev.: Mun.-Developers/
Residents - Meeting Encourage, Mr. W. Estabrooks 1329
Re. 697, Gov't. (Can.) - Cuts: Gov't. (N.S.) - Stand Take,
Mr. F. Corbett 1329
Res. 698, Educ. - Pictou: Elem. School - Construction Support,
Mr. C. Parker 1330
GOVERNMENT BUSINESS:
GOVERNMENT MOTIONS:
ON MOTION FOR SUPPLY:
Mr. H. Epstein 1331
Ms. R. Godin 1334
HOUSE RESOLVED INTO CWH ON SUPPLY AT 4:55 P.M. 1335
HOUSE RECONVENED AT 8:57 P.M. 1335
ADDRESS IN REPLY:
Mr. R. White 1336
Ms. R. Godin 1341
Debate adjourned ~ 1344 ~ ^^
ADJOURNMENT, House rose to meet again on Tue., June 16th at 12:00 p.m. 1345

[Page 1305]

HALIFAX, MONDAY, JUNE 15, 1998

Fifty-seventh General Assembly

First Session

4:00 P.M.

SPEAKER

Hon. Ronald Russell

DEPUTY SPEAKER

Mr. Donald Chard

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

PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Digby-Annapolis.

MR. GORDON BALSER: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition which reads, "We the undersigned request that the Department of Business and Consumer Services, provide a motor vehicle examiner in Weymouth on a monthly basis for the residents of the Weymouth area.". There are 130 names and I have affixed my name.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES

TABLING REPORTS, REGULATIONS AND OTHER PAPERS

STATEMENTS BY MINISTERS

1305

[Page 1306]

GOVERNMENT NOTICES OF MOTION

INTRODUCTION OF BILLS

NOTICES OF MOTION

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

RESOLUTION NO. 664

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

Whereas the Cobequid Multi-Service Centre is a community-based health care centre serving a catchment area of over 60,000 people; and

Whereas the Cobequid Multi-Service Centre is in need of new and more modern equipment to meet current health care needs; and

Whereas the Cobequid Multi-Service Centre's Foundation, with the assistance of staff and a large number of community volunteers, held a fair to raise funds to help meet this identified need;

Therefore be it resolved that this House congratulate and thank the Cobequid Multi-Service Centre's Foundation staff and volunteers for their ongoing commitment to meeting the health care needs of those served by the centre.

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

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley.

[Page 1307]

RESOLUTION NO. 665

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

Whereas Colchester County has 538 farms; and

Whereas in Colchester County farming means diversity; and

Whereas Colchester County is first in production of dairy cattle with about 5,800 cows and second in total vegetable acreage with 517 hectares of carrots and a wide variety of other vegetables;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Legislature commend farming in Nova Scotia while recognizing the major contribution Colchester County farmers and their families make to this province's economy.

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

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Leader of the Opposition.

RESOLUTION NO. 666

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

Whereas the Metro Transit strike is nearing the end of its third week; and

Whereas the transit dispute is especially hard on people with disabilities, students, low-income people and the working poor; and

Whereas a potential settlement is seemingly being prevented by the inability of negotiators for Metro Transit to show flexibility on wages and contract duration;

[Page 1308]

Therefore be it resolved that this House urge the Council of Halifax Regional Municipality to untie the hands of its negotiator and so facilitate a settlement of this dispute.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

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

RESOLUTION NO. 667

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

Whereas there are almost 4,000 senior citizens over the age of 75 living in Glace Bay and surrounding communities; and

Whereas because Glace Bay has no wheelchair-accessible van to transport residents of the three long-term care residences to medical appointments, ambulances are called at a cost of $155 for a one-way local trip; and

Whereas conservative mathematicians would opt for the savings of an accessible van rather than liberally wasting dollars on outrageously expensive ambulance services;

Therefore be it resolved that the Minister of Health and the Minister of Community Services immediately commit to providing an accessible van to serve the needs of seniors and disabled residents in Glace Bay and similarly affected communities.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear a No.

[Page 1309]

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Halifax Fairview.

RESOLUTION NO. 668

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

Whereas a survey by the Halifax Daily News has shown that the Halifax Regional School Board gets significantly less funding per student than similar boards across the country; and

Whereas Halifax's funding shortfall ranges from 89 per cent to 43 per cent below similar sized boards surveyed in B.C., Alberta, Manitoba and Ontario; and

Whereas other school boards in Nova Scotia are even worse off for funding than the Halifax board;

Therefore be it resolved that this Liberal Government is to be condemned for years of cuts to education that have left Nova Scotia children at the bottom of the class for educational funding.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Truro-Bible Hill.

RESOLUTION NO. 669

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

Whereas the Colchester-East Hants Regional Public Library's main branch in Truro will be celebrating the launch of the Summer Reading Club - Kids' Council at the Library on June 24th; and

Whereas this program is supported by the Nova Scotia public library system in all regions of Nova Scotia and each region is free to develop the program as they wish; and

Whereas in the Colchester-East Hants system, the club encourages independent readers, as well as "read to me" readers, and over 700 readers were enrolled in the 1997 club providing incentives and encouragement for a very active program in 1998;

[Page 1310]

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House congratulate the Truro branch of the Colchester-East Hants Regional Library on its outstanding summer in 1997, and wish it continued success in its 1998 summer program.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Cape Breton The Lakes.

RESOLUTION NO. 670

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

Whereas in 1997, the former federal Minister of the Environment, Sergio Marchi, declared the Sydney tar ponds a national disgrace; and

Whereas the federal and provincial Liberal Governments' response to this national disgrace was to establish the Joint Action Group, a move applauded at the time by many residents of the area as well as environmentalists; and

Whereas residents of the area and environmental groups like the Sierra Club now say the JAG process is stalled and serves only to let governments off the hook;

Therefore be it resolved that this House demand that this Liberal Government and the one in Ottawa stop hiding behind the JAG process and accept their responsibility for cleaning up the tar ponds and the coke ovens.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Queens

[Page 1311]

RESOLUTION NO. 671

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

Whereas it is essential that Sable natural gas be made available to western Nova Scotia in order that it not become economically disadvantaged in contrast to the rest of the province; and

Whereas there is already a provincially owned 90 foot right of way available for a transmission line, namely the abandoned rail line from Halifax through Yarmouth to Kentville; and

Whereas there are major power users along that right of way including Michelin in Bridgewater, National Sea in Lunenburg, and Bowater Mersey Paper Company in Brookland, which could well be anchors for local commercial and domestic distribution of natural gas;

Therefore be it resolved that the Premier immediately move to work with public communities of interest in western Nova Scotia, including regional development authorities and municipalities, and support them in application to the Utility Review Board for access to Sable natural gas for economic opportunity and development.

Mr. Speaker, I ask for waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear a No.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Yarmouth.

RESOLUTION NO. 672

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

Whereas reports on the weekend indicated that the federal Liberal Government is proposing a replacement program for TAGS that falls almost $0.5 billion short of what is needed to provide necessary adjustment programs; and

[Page 1312]

Whereas such a scaled down replacement for TAGS could well destroy some of our coastal communities that depend upon the fishery for the livelihood of their people; and

Whereas reports on the weekend also stated that the federal Liberal Government is forgiving billions of dollars in loans to defence and aerospace industry giants like Pratt & Whitney, Litton, and Bombardier;

Therefore be it resolved that this House condemn the federal government for continuing to lavish money on large corporations while short-changing Nova Scotians and Atlantic Canadians whose livelihoods have been destroyed by inept and negligent federal regulation of the fishery.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Halifax-Bedford Basin.

RESOLUTION NO. 673

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

Whereas an article published in the Friday, June 12th edition of the Halifax Chronicle-Herald stated that years of deficit financing and debt guarantees have created a significant burden in the province's cost structure and constrained its financial flexibility; and

Whereas the same article quotes the Canadian Bond Rating Service Incorporated as saying that Nova Scotia's fairly diverse economy leads Atlantic Canada because the province has been successful in reducing its debt burden; and

Whereas the Canadian Bond Rating Service has reaffirmed Nova Scotia's long and short-term credit ratings at A and A-1 respectively;

Therefore be it resolved that this House acknowledge that despite the careless spending habits of past governments, which caused the province to slide into a deep financial hole, the sound fiscal management provided by the present government through the budget for 1998-99 has allowed it to maintain a solid credit reputation in the financial world.

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

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

Is it agreed?

[Page 1313]

I hear a No.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Cumberland South.

RESOLUTION NO. 674

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

Whereas several Grade 11 students of Cumberland County were nominated for special recognition as a result of their hard work and dedication; and

Whereas on June 5, 1998 the Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia was in Truro to present these awards; and

Whereas Jennifer Robart of Advocate High School, Michael King and Amy McCormick of Oxford High School, Felicia George and Chris Sterling of Parrsboro High School, Jessica Lee Hurley and Gary Owen Porter of River Hebert High School, and Michael Gilbert and Amanda Hunter of Springhill Junior-Senior High School were recipients of the Lieutenant Governor's Medal;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate these students for being recognized as excelling in their academic studies and community involvement.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Timberlea-Prospect.

[Page 1314]

[4:15 p.m.]

RESOLUTION NO. 675

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

Whereas retired NHL hockey player, Frank Mahovlich, has just been appointed to the Senate, the chamber of sober second thought and many snores; and

Whereas career-opposing coaches used to warn their players never to wake Mahovlich up during a game or he might play like a star; and

Whereas the Big M, as Mr. Mahovlich was known during his career, now never has to worry about waking up as a Senator;

Therefore be it resolved that this House advise the Prime Minister to consider nominating tough Boston Bruins in the mould of Leo Boivin, Stan Jonathan and Cam Neilly to ensure Mr. Mahovlich, number 27, the Big M, keeps his head up and stays awake in the Senate.

Mr. Speaker, I ask 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 Pictou East.

RESOLUTION NO. 676

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

Whereas an estimated 15,000 bags of trash were collected during May's annual Clean Nova Scotia trash gathering and litter-busting campaign; and

Whereas the project called the Great Nova Scotia Pick Me Up had 30,000 participants; and

[Page 1315]

Whereas the garbage collected was taken from school yards, parks, roadsides, parking lots and communities across the province;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly thank the hard-working people involved in the Great Nova Scotia Pick Me Up and encourage everyone to help keep our province beautiful.

Mr. Speaker, I ask for 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 Halifax Chebucto.

RESOLUTION NO. 677

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

Whereas the voters of District 14 of the Halifax Regional Municipality voted in a council by-election on Saturday, June 13th; and

Whereas Sheila Fougere won by a wide margin, capturing 35.4 per cent of the vote, in a seven-way race for the District 14 council seat; and

Whereas Sheila Fougere thus becomes the first woman elected to Halifax Regional Council;

Therefore be it resolved that this House congratulates Sheila Fougere and the other six women and men who showed their faith in local democracy by standing for election in District 14 of the Halifax Regional Municipality.

Mr. Speaker, I seek waiver of notice.

[Page 1316]

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Digby-Annapolis.

RESOLUTION NO. 678

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

Whereas the 12th Annual Nova Scotia Forestry Exhibition was recently held in Lawrencetown; and

Whereas forestry is one of the leading sectors of the Nova Scotian economy; and

Whereas the Nova Scotia Forestry Exhibition provides the opportunity for Nova Scotians to see first-hand the equipment and forest management practices which are in use on woodlots in this province;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House of Assembly extend their congratulations to Mr. Allison Herlburt and the other organizers of the Nova Scotia Forestry Exhibition.

Mr. Speaker, I would seek 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 Halifax Needham.

[Page 1317]

RESOLUTION NO. 679

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

Whereas 15 year old Joey Hache today used Point Pleasant Park as the departure site for his Cycle of Conscience bicycle trek to Ottawa; and

Whereas the purpose of Joey Hache's trip is to convince the Prime Minister and the federal Liberal Cabinet to change their minds and compensate all victims of tainted blood; and

Whereas Joey Hache is eligible for the existing hepatitis C compensation but is undertaking the difficult journey to help those who have been excluded by the Liberals here and in Ottawa;

Therefore be it resolved that this House salutes Joey Hache and expresses the hope that his example will force this Liberal Cabinet to change its mind and compensate all of those who contracted hepatitis C through tainted blood.

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 Kings North.

RESOLUTION NO. 680

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

Whereas the Wolfville Arbor Day Committee have won the International Society of Arborists' Gold Leaf Award; and

Whereas committee members Doug Hennigar, Gary McNutt, David Slabotski, Steven Slipp and John Stuart have organized volunteers to replant Wolfville trees that were destroyed by the Dutch elm disease over the past several years; and

[Page 1318]

Whereas the group has established a nursery and have dug 3,000 trees out of a hillside at Stirling Fruit Farms for replanting in the community;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House of Assembly congratulate the organizers and volunteers of the Wolfville Arbor Day Committee on their award and thank them for their tireless efforts in greater beautifying the Town of Wolfville with a gift of trees.

Mr. Speaker, I ask for 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. 681

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

Whereas on December 30, 1997, the Labour Standards Tribunal awarded former employees of the Westray Mine 12 weeks pay in lieu of notice; and

Whereas the claim under the Labour Standards Code is a result of the tragic explosion of May 9, 1992, and was to consist of a payment of $1.2 million to 118 former Westray employees; and

Whereas the claim was to have been paid within two to three months from the sale of Westray assets but has not been forthcoming;

Therefore be it resolved that this House urge the government and its Westray point man, the Minister of Finance, to take whatever steps are necessary to pay immediately the claim established under the Labour Standards Code.

Mr. Speaker, I ask for waiver.

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

[Page 1319]

Is it agreed?

I hear several Noes.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Kings North.

RESOLUTION NO. 682

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

Whereas Geraldine Dedrick has won MADD Canada's John G. Bates Volunteer of the Year award; and

Whereas Ms. Dedrick is founder and President of Mothers Against Drunk Driving Halifax Regional Chapter; and

Whereas this award is presented annually to one Canadian member of MADD who has demonstrated volunteerism by a gift of time and talents in pursuit of MADD's mission without the expectation of a reward;

Therefore be it resolved that all the members of the House of Assembly congratulate Geraldine Dedrick on her winning of the volunteer of the year award and thank her and all other members of MADD Canada for their inexhaustible efforts to educate people about the dangers of drinking and driving.

Mr. Speaker, I would ask for 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 Citadel.

[Page 1320]

RESOLUTION NO. 683

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

Whereas last evening activists, community members, family and friends gathered at the annual AIDS memorial vigil and candlelight procession sponsored by the AIDS Coalition; and

Whereas AIDS victims continue to fight discrimination and inadequate access to experimental drugs as well as their illness; and

Whereas many people noted the apparent absence of elected Liberal members of either the provincial or federal governments;

Therefore be it resolved that this House urge the Liberal provincial and federal governments to show their commitment to AIDS victims by increasing support for AIDS research and working to change the protocols for the early release of life-extending, symptom-relieving experimental drugs for the treatment of AIDS.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable Leader of the Conservative Party.

RESOLUTION NO. 684

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

Whereas Jon Sim of New Glasgow has recently been signed to a three year contract with the Dallas Stars of the National Hockey League; and

Whereas Jon Sim, who plays centre, was drafted in the third round, 70th overall in 1996 by the Dallas Stars; and

Whereas along with Sim two other Nova Scotians have signed NHL contracts in the past two months. Centre Craig MacDonald of Antigonish has reached a deal with the Carolina Hurricanes and goaltender Craig Hillier has come to terms with the Pittsburgh Penguins;

Therefore be it resolved that all the members of the House of Assembly congratulate these three up-and-coming hockey stars on their NHL signings and wish them all the best as they strive for the ultimate hockey goal - the Stanley Cup.

Mr. Speaker, I ask for waiver.

[Page 1321]

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. 685

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

Whereas UFO expert Guido Moosbruger delivered a lecture this past weekend at a Dalhousie University lecture hall about a 24 year relationship between a Swiss farmer and extraterrestrials from the Plejares constellation of stars located 500 light years from Earth; and

Whereas the member for Cape Breton Nova failed his medical school exam in toxicology this past week, claiming that he would not be poisoned if he rubbed arsenic on his body; and

Whereas constituents of this member for Cape Breton Nova must wonder at such statements if his personal physiological state is that of an extraterrestrial;

Therefore be it resolved that this House contact UFO expert Guido Moosbruger for any information he can impart that would allow the member for Cape Breton Nova to call home. (Laughter)

MR. SPEAKER: I'll take a look at that before it's tabled.

[This notice was tabled at Page 1327.]

The honourable member for Truro-Bible Hill.

RESOLUTION NO. 686

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

[Page 1322]

Whereas the Sackville Bedford Developmental Centre, which provides quality programs for pre-school children with special needs, is funded below other developmental centres; and

Whereas in September 1997, the Minister of Community Services advised the Progressive Conservative Critic for Community Services that the department agrees that funding inequities need to be addressed as soon as possible; and

Whereas almost a full year later, the inequity in the provincial funding continues to exist, creating budget pressures that will likely force the Sackville Bedford Developmental Centre to close, forcing the parents of special needs children to scramble to find alternative care;

Therefore be it resolved that the Minister of Community Services commit to acting on her long-standing commitment to address funding inequities among provincial developmental centres, so that all special needs children throughout the province are treated equitably and fairly.

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

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

Is it agreed?

I hear a No.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable Leader of the Opposition.

RESOLUTION NO. 687

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

Whereas the federal Liberal Government is reported to be considering a severely scaled-down assistance package to replace TAGS; and

Whereas a scaled-down package will be devastating to coastal communities in Nova Scotia and throughout Atlantic Canada; and

Whereas the scaled-down package will force fishers and fish plant workers onto social assistance and strain the finances of municipalities and the province;

[Page 1323]

Therefore be it resolved that this House urge the federal government to change course before it's too late, and come up with a replacement program for TAGS that does not condemn thousands of people to poverty and hopelessness.

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

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

Is it agreed?

I hear several Noes.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Argyle.

RESOLUTION NO. 688

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

Whereas the lobster vessel Twilight Mistress, operated by Mike Nickerson of Argyle, caught fire and had to be abandoned by his crew of four, and sent out a distress flare at approximately 3:00 a.m. on December 19, 1996; and

Whereas the vessel Lady Jeanelle, her captain Roy LeBlanc, and crew members Vernon LeBlanc and Sheldon Boudreau, sighted the flare and immediately responded, resulting in the crew of the distressed vessel being picked up without harm in their inflatable life-raft; and

Whereas the Municipality of Argyle hosted a ceremony last weekend to honour Roy LeBlanc and his crew for their upholding of a proud tradition of coming to their fellow fishermen's assistance when in distress;

Therefore be it resolved that this House congratulate the crew of the Lady Jeanelle for their devotion to their fellow man, and to the Municipality of Argyle for their recognition of such values.

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

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

Is it agreed?

[Page 1324]

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. 689

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

Whereas the Sackville Rivers Association is a community-based volunteer organization dedicated to maintaining and enhancing the Sackville River, its fish habitats, and its hinterland; and

Whereas on Saturday, June 13th, the association, with the help of approximately 175 volunteers and the assistance of Black and McDonald Ltd. of Dartmouth, undertook the annual clean-up of the Sackville River; and

Whereas 1998 marks the 10th Anniversary for the Sackville Rivers Association;

Therefore be it resolved that this House thank all participants of last Saturday's clean-up of the Sackville River, and extend its best wishes to the Sackville Rivers Association on the occasion of their 10th Anniversary.

Mr. Speaker, I would ask for waiver of notice and passage without debate.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Digby-Annapolis.

[Page 1325]

RESOLUTION NO. 690

MR. GORDON BALSER: 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 a world-renowned icon of Nova Scotia's seafaring heritage; and

[4:30 p.m.]

Whereas on Sunday, June 14th, the Bluenose II departed from its home port of Lunenburg, Nova Scotia on a five month, tourism related, promotional tour of the Caribbean and the West Coast; and

Whereas the potential benefits of a West Coast tour at the peak of Nova Scotia's prime tourist season is questionable;

Therefore be it resolved that future itineraries for the Bluenose II ensure that summers are spent on the Atlantic Coast promoting tourism in our local communities.

Mr. Speaker, I would request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear a No.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Halifax Fairview.

RESOLUTION NO. 691

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

Whereas Halifax Fairview resident, Geraldine Dedrick, is the founder and president of the Halifax Regional Chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving; and

Whereas she has demonstrated "volunteerisim by a gift of time and talents in pursuit of MADD's mission, without expectation of reward"; and

[Page 1326]

Whereas for her dedication, she has been awarded the John G. Bates Volunteer of the Year Award;

Therefore be it resolved this House congratulate Geraldine Dedrick on her award and express its appreciation for her dedication to a worthwhile cause.

Mr. Speaker, I would request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Pictou East.

RESOLUTION NO. 692

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

Whereas the Windsor Forks District School has won the prestigious Emerald Green School status for completing and recording 500 environmental action projects; and

Whereas the elementary school students were in a national program called "Learners in Action", which is sponsored by SEEDS, the Society Environmental and Energy Development Studies Canada Foundation; and

Whereas this program gives students the opportunity to experience first-hand the benefits of working for a better environment;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House of Assembly congratulate the students of Windsor Forks District School on their Emerald Green status and encourage them to keep up the stellar work they have so proudly displayed.

Mr. Speaker, I would request waiver of notice.

[Page 1327]

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

Just before I recognize the honourable member for Cape Breton The Lakes, I am going to allow the tabling of this notice of motion submitted by the honourable member for Cape Breton Centre. It is very close to the line of being ridicule but, however, I think it is probably okay.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Cape Breton The Lakes.

RESOLUTION NO. 693

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

Whereas Nova Scotia's Gambling Help Line received nearly 4,000 calls last year; and

Whereas Mike Bryson of the Gambling Help Line says the numbers suggest a rapid progression of gambling related problems; and

Whereas the 67 per cent of those calling the help line said they had a problem with VLTs;

Therefore be it resolved that this House support immediate action to stem the growth of VLTs, so as to curb their negative effect on Nova Scotians.

Mr. Speaker, I would request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear several Noes.

[Page 1328]

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley.

RESOLUTION NO. 694

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

Whereas a deluge of inquiries made today to personnel in the Department of Transportation and Public Works has resulted in no information coming forth on the department's potential layoff of up to 126 CUPE employees; and

Whereas this Liberal Government, in its demented haste, has lacerated its Transportation and Public Works budget by $27 million; and

Whereas these CUPE employees, some who have already been laid off, do not qualify for Employment Insurance benefits;

Therefore be it resolved that this Liberal Government recognize the hardship they are forcing on these DOT seasonal work employees and immediately provide an alternative source of employment so as to keep these hard-working women and men off the welfare line.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Yarmouth.

RESOLUTION NO. 695

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

Whereas Canso trawlermen have taken the Premier to task for his failure to fight on their behalf for a fair share of northern shrimp quota; and

Whereas Canso trawlermen want the Premier to follow Brian Tobin's example and bust the door down to get a fair hearing for Nova Scotia's fishermen; and

Whereas the Premier says strong-arm tactics are not the way to get a fair deal from the federal Liberals and their Fisheries Minister David Anderson;

[Page 1329]

Therefore be it resolved that this House urge the Premier to explain, since strong-arm tactics are not the answer, what is the way to get a fair deal on quota from the federal Fisheries Minister?

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Timberlea-Prospect.

RESOLUTION NO. 696

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

Whereas long-term planning is vitally important in the development of our many fast-growing communities; and

Whereas it is also important that foresight is needed in the growing demand for recreational land and proposed school sites; and

Whereas there are developers with a conscience when it comes to these expectations;

Therefore be it resolved that the Department of Municipal Affairs encourage municipal units in this province to meet with developers and resident groups to develop a reasonable, consistent approach to planning development in this province.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Cape Breton Centre.

RESOLUTION NO. 697

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

Whereas reports on the weekend indicated that the federal Liberal Government is proposing a replacement for the TAGS program that will fall hundreds of millions of dollars short of what is needed; and

Whereas the reaction of both the Premier and the Fisheries Minister indicate that this outrageous plan is being foisted on Nova Scotia fishing communities without any meaningful consultation with the Nova Scotia Liberal Government; and

[Page 1330]

Whereas this is yet another case of the Nova Scotia Liberal Government rolling over and playing dead in the face of the wishes of their Ottawa cousins;

Therefore be it resolved that after TAGS, the BST, the CHST, and the cuts to EI and the public sector, this House declare that enough is enough and it is time we had a government that will stand up to Ottawa.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Pictou West.

RESOLUTION NO. 698

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

Whereas the Town of Pictou's elementary schools are vital institutions for the people of Pictou; and

Whereas Pictou Elementary School is now in need of immediate replacement; and

Whereas the future of Nova Scotia depends on its children receiving a good elementary education in buildings which are clean, safe, up to date and technology enhanced;

Therefore be it resolved that this House fully supports the construction of a new elementary school for the Town of Pictou, as recommended by the School Capital Construction Committee.

Mr. Speaker, I ask for waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear a No.

The notice is tabled.

ORDERS OF THE DAY

GOVERNMENT BUSINESS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.

[Page 1331]

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

GOVERNMENT MOTIONS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.

MR. RAYMOND WHITE: Mr. Speaker, I move that you do now leave the Chair and that the House resolve itself into a Committee of the Whole House on Supply unto Her Majesty.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Halifax Chebucto.

MR. HOWARD EPSTEIN: Mr. Speaker, before we do that, I would like to bring to the attention of the members of the Legislature - and I had hoped particularly for the attention of the Minister of Education and I am sorry not to have his presence in the Chamber for my comments.

MR. SPEAKER: I would just like to caution the member, it is not permitted to mention the absence of another member from the House.

MR. EPSTEIN: I certainly apologize, Mr. Speaker. I was not aware of that and I certainly meant no offence to the honourable minister, I just observed that. In any event, what I wish to bring to the attention of members of the House was a particular incident that took place at a junior high school, or emanating from a junior high school in my district in the last month - it was about a month ago. The incident, although of strong interest in my district, illustrates what is a larger problem and one that I think we have to pay some attention to. I will briefly outline the nature of the incident and then attempt to draw out what seems to be the important lessons that we should pay attention to.

It appears that about a month or so ago some of the girls in the school had a small argument between themselves. This took place on the school grounds and, unfortunately, escalated to the point where one of the friends of one of the girls participating in this incident decided that she would organize others to attempt to physically reprimand one of the other girls involved in this very minor dispute they had originally had. I am happy to say that the staff at the school safely saw the girl home.

However, later that night a group of students from the school actually went to the home of one of the students, apparently with the intention of calling her out so that they could engage in a fight. The father of the girl came to the door, spoke to the children, many of whom he recognized from the neighbourhood. I should say that the district is strikingly a very solid, middle-class, family-oriented, single-family-dwelling district, but many of these students had come together and formed themselves into a group, many there with the intention not so

[Page 1332]

much of participating as of observing. They had heard that something was going to happen. They took an interest and decided that they were going to come along in order to watch. At one point the police were called and ultimately the crowd dispersed.

Similar follow-up gatherings of students took place near and around the home of this student for several nights following. Rocks were thrown by the students. Glass was broken. Generally it was disruptive. It was noisy and, of course, extremely worrisome to others in the neighbourhood and, understandably so, extremely upsetting, not just to the parents of the particular child involved, but to all parents of those children.

Now, ultimately, the immediate problem dissipated. Ultimately it was followed up by the police, as one would expect, with respect to the few students who were actively involved in throwing things or attempting to start a fight. The problem was at least, in part, reasonably well handled within the parameters of what could be done at the time. This concern, however, was brought to my attention through two routes. One was word of mouth among parents for I, too, have a daughter who attends this junior high school. Some other parents mentioned to me that this had taken place. Subsequently, it was the focus of a discussion at a Parent-Teacher Association meeting where, naturally enough, many of the parents who were there were likewise very concerned.

What emerged in the discussion with the school principal was general approval of the course of action that the principal took in the circumstances, recognition that there were at least some policies in place at the school board that would help guide a principal in similar circumstances, but also recognition that there were some limitations in the guidelines that exist to help principals. There was recognition that there was a lot of discretion still on the part of what a principal could do in these circumstances. What many of the parents felt was that it was important, of course, that incidents of this sort be avoided and the real question we turned our minds to was how is it that we could, as parents, attempt to avoid such events? How can we bring the message to our children that they ought not to encourage others merely by their presence, watching and waiting and seeing if something of interest to them was going to take place, that this in and of itself, although not violent, encouraged the violence by others?

The problem that we focused on was that no formal notice of this event had gone to the parents in the school at all. So only a limited number of parents knew that this took place and virtually all of the parents at the PTA meeting were highly critical of the administration for having chosen not to tell the parents about this. So I identify this as perhaps a weakness in the guidelines, perhaps simply a difference of opinion as to how the matter might be handled and yet, of course, as parents we are at a great loss to understand how we can be prompted to have conversations with our children at home about the atmosphere in the school or particular problems, or even this particular event, if we do not know about it, if it is only by word of mouth that it gets out.

[Page 1333]

I bring this up because it seems to me that it is exactly the sort of problem that ought to be focused on not only by our individual school boards but by the Department of Education.

[4:45 p.m.]

I was happy to learn that at least some people with expertise who might be called upon in order to deal with particular crises that might arise at individual schools that this kind of trained personnel and expertise does exist within the Department of Education and be called upon. Yet what we are looking to do is to avoid, if we can, actually having to tidy up afterwards because all too often the crisis team is called upon after something has taken place or while we are actually in the midst of it. We do know that although the particular event I have been describing is, however disturbing to parents in the school, of a relatively low level of harm, in the end no one was actually harmed to the extent that there was harm, it was property harm but yet it is nonetheless disturbing and all the parents worried about how to influence the culture at the school.

This incident is not alone and it is not the only level of violence or potential violence that we have seen in the schools. Quite clearly, we have seen outright fights and on a mass scale in some schools. Recently we have seen reports of students who have actually been found on or near school grounds with weapons, by which I mean guns or rifles and not just weapons as in sticks or bats, unfortunately. This has happened just in our metro area and we have to worry about this, particularly when we are reminded that there has been even more violent incidents that have taken place in or involving young students at schools. One is reminded of the British Columbia incident involving the Virk girl who actually died as a result of it; of incidents in the United States throughout a whole series of communities in which students have killed other students with weapons. We have to be ever-vigilant to make sure that we don't find that in our community.

So far, we have been extremely lucky, I think, to avoid that. I simply recite this incident so that the attention of the Department of Education can be drawn to it and of all members in their home communities. I encourage them to continue to make contact with their schools and to be alert to ways in which they can take steps, not just in their own families - certainly that is important enough, to have discussions with their children, to become alert to what is appropriate behaviour - but through their PTAs with their school officials, with their school boards and ultimately with the Department of Education to make sure that we are alert to this and that we don't find ourselves having to call in teams of grief counsellors or the other experts who are needed in times of crisis. The main point, of course, is to try to avoid degeneration to any situations in which we would need such personnel. Mr. Speaker, I thank you for your attention.

[Page 1334]

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Sackville-Beaver Bank.

MS. ROSEMARY GODIN: Mr. Speaker, we strive in this House to bring equality to the people of this province in every way we can. In health and education we are striving to do this. But there is one area where equality seems to be lacking and that is in the area of housing. Today I would like to specifically mention trailer parks or mobile home parks or as the real estate people like to call them, mini-home parks but of course, the people who live there just like to call them home.

I attended a meeting last week in my constituency that brought together a group of people from a variety of mobile home parks in the metro area. The stories I heard about the conditions that some people live under was heartbreaking. Fortunately, a very courageous and growing group of people have joined together to form the Coalition of Mobile Home Tenants Association. As this group spreads into one mobile home park after another, it is gaining in strength and especially it is gaining in knowledge.

As these tenants get together and share stories and experiences they are beginning to know that there is something that is very wrong. For example, these tenants, and let me first elaborate on why they are, in my opinion, wrongly referred to as tenants, own their own mini homes and pay taxes, just like any other homeowner.

AN HON. MEMBER: And mortgages.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please.

MS. GODIN: And mortgages, that is right. My colleague mentions taxes and mortgages. The only thing that they rent or lease is the ground that their home sits on. Yet they fall under the Residential Tenancies Act, an Act that clearly describes a tenant as being an occupant of a residential dwelling. This is not accurate or fair to mobile home owners. It appears to allow them to exist as taxpayers under different rules than the rest of us.

Last Thursday I met with that group from several parks. They were under the impression, at least in two of the parks, that the RCMP are not allowed in their park without the permission of the park owner. Well, I thought this cannot be true. So I have a call into my local RCMP inspector to clarify this situation so that I can pass the correct information on to the homeowners, but I do hope that that is not correct. The taxpayers in these parks need to be protected and they have to feel that they can call the RCMP at any time, but they don't feel that way.

I heard from a single woman who had to move out of a park because of harassment and threats of physical harm by her neighbour. She called the police and the police said it was a problem for her landlord. So she called the park owner and he said, no, it was not any of his business. It was a police matter. Fearing for her own safety, she just basically picked up and

[Page 1335]

left. People in mobile home parks live in fear and with great insecurity. Park owners have far too much power and that extends to the power to make people leave the park or the power to virtually ignore these problems within the park with total impunity.

Why do I say that? Well, because mobile home owners are virtually captives in the parks where they live. Mr. Speaker, the park owner can afford to have a like it or leave it attitude because the bottom line is very few people can afford to hitch up their trailer and leave or if they could there are so few places that they can move their trailers to. So as a result some people just literally get up and walk away from their homes.

I know that the honourable Minister of Business and Consumer Services has been contacted by some mobile home owners, especially in my constituency, about problems with both the Residential Tenancies Act and the Residential Tenancy Board. They are hoping to meet as soon as possible with the minister, but they do have the same concern as myself, and that is that this is a housing issue and perhaps even a human rights issue.

These homeowners are not commodities. They are taxpayers who want adequate protection under the law and many wonder if they would be better served under the Department of Housing. In the meantime the Coalition of Mobile Home Tenants Association will continue to support and encourage and help its members and others who live in mobile home parks. I would hope that this House, all 52 members, will recognize that the members of this association, who are merely striving for equality and fairness, may be putting themselves at risk of being asked to leave their parks. Should this happen I will most certainly bring it to the attention of the honourable members of this Legislature and especially the honourable Minister responsible for the Residential Tenancies Act.

This is the first time I have risen to speak about mobile home parks but, Mr. Speaker, after speaking with many of my constituents, and I do have five mobile home parks in Sackville-Beaver Bank, I do know almost certainly that this is not going to be the last time I rise to speak about the problems in these parks.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is carried.

[4:55 p.m. The House resolved itself into a CWH on Supply with Deputy Speaker Mr. Donald Chard in the Chair.]

[8:57 p.m. CWH on Supply rose and the House reconvened. Mr. Speaker, Hon. Ronald Russell, resumed the Chair.]

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

[Page 1336]

THE CLERK: That the committee has met and made some progress in considering Supply and asks leave to sit again.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.

MR. RAYMOND WHITE: Mr. Speaker, the next item of Government Business will be the adjourned debate on the Address in Reply to the Speech from the Throne.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Guysborough-Port Hawkesbury adjourned the debate. I believe he has around about 44 minutes remaining.

MR. RAYMOND WHITE: Mr. Speaker, members may recall that approximately a week ago I had the opportunity to begin my remarks related to the Speech from the Throne and to talk to the members about some of the events that are happening in the large geographical constituency of Guysborough-Port Hawkesbury. We talked briefly about the impact of Stora, the expansion and the opening of the new supercalendared paper line and its impact on eastern Nova Scotia and also the role that Stora plays in the area.

Also during that time, Mr. Speaker, we talked about the fishery. As members of the House know, our government has been actively involved with the Canso trawlermen's group in providing funding for feasibility studies, working with them in forming the cooperative, working with that group in the community of Mulgrave and lobbying for shrimp quotas, and I think at that time I expressed my disappointment and displeasure at the federal decision and our goal to continue to work with those groups.

We talked about Sable gas. At that time I mentioned that the municipality had opened an industrial park of 550 acres. I am pleased to report that since then their first tenant has moved on that site and is constructing the cement plant which will supply all of the cement for the construction related to the gas plant in Goldboro and that, again, is a positive move. Also one of the local companies, Mulgrave Machine, who some members may remember was actively involved in providing some of the materials for the fixed link, the Confederation Bridge to Prince Edward Island, has also won a major contract in providing pressure control valves in excess of $600,000 for this project. So the Sable gas itself is having a significant impact on Guysborough County and the feeling of the people in that area is that the time has come for industrial development in Guysborough County. Also, second to that, we know that the fractionation plant for the dissolution of the liquids will be in the Strait area, in the area of Statia Terminals. So a project as large as SOEP, as large as Sable gas is making an impact, is involving local industries, and spans a large part of the constituency of Guysborough-Port Hawkesbury.

[Page 1337]

[9:00 p.m.]

I spoke to you briefly about the importance of the Strait area and presently underway planning is being done to develop the super-port. I do believe that any planning has to look at both sides of the Strait of Canso, take into consideration the 14,000 acres at Melford, the facilities at Mulgrave, plus the existing industries and facilities on the Port Hawkesbury side of the Strait.

Getting back to the Speech from the Throne, and talking briefly about education, one of the items that I was personally pleased to see in the budget was increased funding for literacy. Over the last five years I have had the opportunity to volunteer and to work with what I believe are some of the most dedicated people in Nova Scotia, Mr. Speaker, and that is those who deliver literacy training to adults throughout Nova Scotia. I have never seen such an enthusiastic group who work so hard on behalf of their learners and I am pleased to report that since that initiative began, approximately five years ago, we have developed 27 networks throughout Nova Scotia, and have assisted over 4,000 adult learners in upgrading their literacy skills in Nova Scotia.

I think that is a commendable effort on behalf of the hundreds of trainers and volunteers throughout Nova Scotia, who have made literacy - as I have said in the past - an act of love, because they go beyond what is expected of an instructor to ensure that the people they work with one on one develop their literacy skills. Anything we do to develop our Nova Scotians strengthens our communities. But also, I have found that it has given these people self-confidence to go out and seek employment, to feel better about themselves and their relationship with their families.

We have heard a great deal of talk about P3 and school renovations, and I can tell you that the areas I represent want to see the P3 program go forward. They want to see new schools in the Port Hawkesbury area. They want to see the renovations happen in the Sherbrooke family of schools, the Guysborough family of schools, the Canso family of schools and in the Mulgrave area. As many members may not know, at the Mulgrave school we have in place a professional development centre which upgrades not only the computer skills for teachers but for the adults in the area, or businesses.

Recently we announced the opening of additional CAP sites which will allow many communities to access the Internet. I am pleased to report that, in the area served by the Strait area board, we have more community access sites to the Internet than the Province of Saskatchewan. That in itself, I think, is a major accomplishment not only for that area, but it shows you the high priority that we're putting on getting our people connected to the Internet as an economic tool.

[Page 1338]

I just want to talk briefly about communities, and hopefully later this week I'm going to have an opportunity, in another forum, to talk to you about tourism; things like the Stan Rogers Folk Festival, the community concerts at Port Hawkesbury and so on. So, I'm going to leave that and move on to health.

We have heard a great deal of talk about health care and the importance to constituencies. I can remember when Canso was faced with a doctor shortage. I have lived in Canso for over 29 years, have served as a councillor, as mayor, and I can remember making many trips to Halifax, working with various governments to encourage doctors to come to our community. We recently went through a period in which one of our doctors, Dr. Ahmad, who made a major contribution to health care in Canso passed away, and we faced a doctor shortage. We approached the doctor recruiting team, they came to a public meeting, they worked with the community and, I am pleased to report, we now have two full-time doctors on staff not only in Canso, but in many municipalities that represent Guysborough-Port Hawkesbury. There still is a challenge in the Strait area and I know, through the minister, we'll continue to work on that.

Also, we've heard talk about the air ambulance. I can think of two examples in which the air ambulance arrived in remote parts of my constituency and made a difference. That's a program that wasn't in place. Also the importance of having quality trained staff; wherever they arrive throughout Guysborough-Port Hawkesbury, we know the service will be top-notch, the vehicles will be properly equipped and preventive, first-line care will be given.

These are things that are in the Speech from the Throne that relate to some of the things that we are doing positively in Nova Scotia, that have an impact on Guysborough-Port Hawkesbury.

I want to just mention briefly, the field of recreation. Over the last two years I have had the opportunity, working with the Minister responsible for the Nova Scotia Sport and Recreation Commission, to secure funding for ballfields throughout Guysborough-Port Hawkesbury. I'll use one example. Although we opened four or five in the last two years, about two weeks ago I went to the tiny community of Goshen, where they constructed a $50,000 ballfield, of which we contributed $15,000 as seed money. Members of that community went out and they laid the sods; they put down the fence. That is a sign of what is happening in many of our communities. When they get together, they look at a facility that is needed and they go forward.

Later this year, we will be opening, in Sherbrooke, a facility that they say is a dream come true. It is a rec-plex, which is a sports complex which will enable them to provide opportunities to the young people that we take for granted. Most of our areas have rinks or other facilities. Now, to this community is coming a facility that they have never had, but they got together, worked with Economic Development and Tourism, with Sports and Recreation and, with the communities, developed the money to do that.

[Page 1339]

One of the most unique celebrations in Sherbrooke is the Sherbrooke Christmas celebrations. Most members know what historic Sherbrooke Village is. In the month of November, leading up to Christmas, there is a weekend of celebrations in which the historic homes are decorated much like they were back in the 17th Century. There are functions held in that same theme. The whole main street of Sherbrooke is lit, either by volunteers or done by corporations such as Nova Scotia Power. It is becoming a major, off-season attraction for people to go to Sherbrooke Village. I could mention other things like the work we are doing in Country Harbour with Sports and Recreation and so on.

It is nice that the Minister of Transportation is here because, like other members, I acknowledge the work that has been done on highways, but we have 1,100 kilometres - feels like 11,000 sometimes - of highway that needs work. I will continue to press the minister to get funding, as will other members, for important highway links throughout the constituency.

So I have mentioned to you health, some of the impacts of the Throne Speech; telemedicine and how important it is. I mentioned the fact that we do need improvements in education. I want to switch a little bit because I know, later this week, hopefully at another opportunity, maybe during the late debate, or whatever, I will talk to you about two of the major events happening this year, the Stan Rogers Folk Festival.

On Sunday afternoon, I had the experience to walk through Black Duck Cove Park, which will officially open on Saturday of this week. Black Duck Cove Park is located outside of the community of Little Dover. Mr. Speaker, I know the question that probably begs to be asked is, is it a provincial park? This is a project that was done in consultation with the Department of Natural Resources. It is provincial land, but it is a community initiative. We provided the expertise for designing the park, the shelters, the boardwalks, which are completely wheelchair accessible.

If you can imagine, when you are sitting in the city, to go out on a Sunday afternoon and walk along and see the beautiful blue water, to smell the different types of fir and spruce, to walk through the forest and listen to the different types of birds or watch the herring gulls or, as you come around the point, watch the fishing boats coming and going, I can't think of a better example of what a community can do to build on its strength and the beauty that we have in Nova Scotia. To read the guestbook, it has visitors from all over the world. This is something a community did itself, working in conjunction with the government to establish what I consider is one of the finest examples of a community development project.

MR. JOHN HOLM: Mr. Speaker, a brief question if the member will accept it. On the topic the member is speaking about, I just wonder if the member has any brochures or any information on the park and if he might be willing to share that because I, for one, would be very interested in getting that information and finding out a little bit more about how the arrangements were made to use the provincial land in the community. The Black Duck Cove Park, I would like to get a little bit more information on that.

[Page 1340]

MR. WHITE: Like any other members, we use any opportunity we can to promote our areas. For example, when I talk about Stan Rogers, I do have programs. I will provide the minister with maps and background information - the member. It is a Freudian slip - Mr. Speaker, I will attempt to provide the member that information and I do hope he will take an opportunity to come and visit. That is a point I want to mention, for many years, people have gone to other provinces and countries to explore their beauty. I can only encourage you to come and explore the beauty of Guysborough and Port Hawkesbury, it is unique and it has a lot to offer.

I am going to change the tenor a little bit and I may not get the same reaction as I did earlier. I have had the opportunity to listen to the Speech from the Throne, to listen to the replies. The more I listen to the replies it reminds me of a Hans Christian Andersen story and I am referring to my friends in the New Democratic Party. I encourage them to continue to speak because what is happening is we can see there is a drastic difference between the Liberal philosophy of economic development, the Liberal vision of where we want to go in Nova Scotia, which was shown in the Speech from the Throne and what we hear from the NDP or the Official Opposition.

On one hand we hear that we set a climate for economic growth. We talk about the loans that we gave to Stora a number of years ago that ended in one of the largest construction projects in Nova Scotia. Again, the Liberal Government is setting an agenda which resulted in economic growth. We know how important Michelin Tire is to Nova Scotia and I know that the members who represent the different ridings in Pictou County would certainly agree to that and we have set a philosophy that says, we encourage industries to locate in Nova Scotia. Why? Because those very same industries produce jobs and that is what we want. But yet what do we hear from the NDP? Don't give anything to the large corporate companies. How can you not give something and encourage companies to come to create jobs and on the other hand say we want to spend money for this, that and the other thing and not say where the money is going to come from.

Our Speech from the Throne indicates fiscal responsibility and if you don't believe what I am saying, I think a very good barometer of what the public believes is the true picture of the NDP has been shown in the editorial cartoons over the last two or three weeks. It very clearly sums up that there is a difference.

The story I am referring to is called, The Emperor's New Clothes. I think what Nova Scotians are finding is the NDP speaks more often. In the replies to the Speech from the Throne we are really seeing that behind the NDP agenda there is an expression, if it talks and walks and looks like a duck, it must be a duck. What I am finding out is the NDP talk and walk remind me of another NDP Leader called Bob Rae. What I am hearing more and more throughout the province is, don't let that bunch take over the government because if they do anything close to what the NDP did in Ontario, there will be nothing left to this province.

[Page 1341]

Companies will be encouraged to leave and with those companies go jobs. Obviously, I must be touching on a nerve because I am getting a response.

What I am asking Nova Scotians to do is to look very carefully at what the NDP says and they will find very clearly, as many Nova Scotians are finding, that indeed the Emperor's clothes have come off and what we see there is not what we need for Nova Scotia. Thank you. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Sackville-Beaver Bank. (Applause)

MS. ROSEMARY GODIN: Mr. Speaker, I will try to keep everybody awake. It is indeed a privilege to be standing here today in this House and to be able to represent the people of Sackville-Beaver Bank. On March 24th I was given a mandate and an obligation to represent the best interests of my constituents and I will strive every day to do so.

I want to begin my reply to the Speech from the Throne with some very wise words from another 1998 Speech from the Throne and it said, "Leadership is about substance, ideas, competence and cooperation among all parties involved. It should be of our intention that we have a goal to secure a modern and just society. Given the great issues before us today Canadians and Millwoodians are entitled to no less.". That was the introduction to the Speech from the Throne given at Millwood High School's Model Parliament on May 29th of this year. Both of my sons are graduates of Millwood High and it was indeed a great honour for me to be asked to present the Throne Speech which was written by Michael Smiley and Grade 12 student Jen Donaldson. I would like to refer to this speech from the Millwoodians again in my own reply because these young people represent what Nova Scotians aspire to be in the future and what this government should support.

[9:15 p.m.]

The Throne Speech was a package of a lot of very pretty words. It made me feel warm and cuddly all over. (Interruptions) Well, never mind. I was going to say it doesn't take much. There was one big problem. They were just words. They happen to be words that have followed years and years of empty promises. Let me tell you about words. You cannot live in them and they do not fill a kid's tummy. Although, believe me, by the end of this session of the Legislature, it would be nice to think that the government has eaten its words. Then they will find that words do not fill much unless there is action behind them.

The Throne Speech began with education. "When the school bell rings in communities across Nova Scotia, . . .", it said, ". . . it signals something important is about to happen.". Well, really. Tell that to the mums and dads in Bedford, in Hammonds Plains, in Pockwock, in Middle and Upper Sackville, and Beaver Bank; all areas in my riding of Sackville-Beaver Bank. I know that in many homes what happens when that school bell rings is that parents get a knot in their stomach thinking about the conditions their children are trying to learn under.

[Page 1342]

One parent tells me she feels like sitting down and crying after the kids have left. Another says he feels so helpless thinking about his little ones jammed into a hot portable. A mum asks me how her child can be successful in school when she can only get photocopied notes from a textbook two days before an exam. Finally, another says she is so desperate about the poor quality of her children's school environment that they are thinking about moving. But then she asks where in this province other than the Education Minister's own riding can a child sit in comfort with all the books and supplies that she or he needs.

The overcrowded Hammonds Plains Consolidated Elementary School is in my riding of Sackville-Beaver Bank. It is on the critical list. I can tell you what P3 means to the people of Hammonds Plains. It means postpone, postpone, postpone.

My constituents do not want to hear any more words about how this government is committed to providing good education for our children. No more hollow words. They want action.

The Throne Speech said, "Our young people are this province's greatest asset.". Then treat them as if they are. No matter where they live in this province, for God's sake take better care of our children.

The National Child Benefit Program was spoken about in the budget recently. It is not enough. The Throne Speech declared a 20 per cent Canadian poverty rate is a national disgrace. I stand here to say it is a provincial disgrace that many Nova Scotian children are living in poverty. This province has the third highest rate of poverty in Canada. My colleague from Dartmouth North spoke so eloquently and passionately last week about the conditions that this government expects some Nova Scotians to live under.

We hear it all the time, that word poverty. When we talk about the poverty line we tend to describe it in terms of dollars, but in actuality it is a value defined by the World Health Organization that means someone who is too poor to obtain a calorie-adequate diet. This is not just a Third World problem. It is a Nova Scotia problem.

I just want to ask this government, where have you been the last five years? Child poverty is a disgrace. This government talks about being committed to a fair and equitable social assistance plan in the Speech from the Throne. Honourable members, you leave home for a while and you live on that plan and then come back here and talk about fairness. I know there are people in this House who are tired of hearing the rhetoric, but the statistics continue to show that we are living in a time of declining standards for the majority of people.

Mr. Speaker, there was nothing in the Speech from the Throne or the budget that addressed that problem. Nothing that will make a real difference in people's lives. Rich individuals and corporations continue to prosper while those in the middle and on the bottom

[Page 1343]

of the economic ladder continue to lose ground. People are losing their homes and apartments because they just can't make ends meet.

I am my Party's Housing Critic. It is an interesting area and we were only a few days into this sitting of the House and it gave me an opportunity to really see government at work - I am talking about rooming houses. I am going to make the assumption that all 52 members of this House agree that slum landlords are not wanted in this province and that they had better clean up their act. So if all 52 of us agree, you can imagine the frustration of people living in horrible conditions, hearing that the Liberal Government has to go through the process before enacting a bill which will allow municipalities to further regulate housing conditions at rooming houses.

There was a line in the Speech from the Throne, one line, "The government will work with the Halifax Regional Municipality and community groups to address abysmal . . .", your word, ". . . conditions in local rooming houses.". Well, get on with it. My colleague, Howard Epstein, introduced a bill at his first opportunity and (Interruption) Process be damned, let's get to work and protect the people of this province. Let's get down to work and deal with the things that impact on people's lives now. There are so many issues involving housing. What is a more basic need than a roof over our heads? It is a security that anyone needs to conduct all other areas of their life in an adequate and a capable way.

Housing is a big issue in Sackville-Beaver Bank. As I mentioned earlier this evening, my riding includes five large mobile home parks and one major housing co-operative. I also mentioned that there is the Coalition of Mobile Homes Tenants Association that is based in Sackville-Beaver Bank but there is interest from all across the province. That interest is a direct result of the very serious problems that exist in mobile home parks between tenants and some owners. I have great hopes that these problems can be sorted out as this association grows in strength through its number of members and through the impressive array of knowledge and skills and expertise that these members have.

There is also an impressive amount of skill and expertise among people who live in housing co-operatives. The Premier even acknowledged this under questioning in this House. The Premier is aware that residents of our provincial housing co-ops are quite capable of managing their own homes. I am encouraged by that as I am sure the housing co-op federation is and all its members. I hope that acknowledgement translates very quickly into turning co-ops over to the management of a body made up of residents themselves. This is what they would really wish.

The Throne Speech said, "My government understands its role well. The province will jealously protect the interests of Nova Scotians.". I ask, Mr. Speaker, which Nova Scotians would that be? Is it just the powerful or just the Liberal friends, or is it all the people in this province who deserve good government?

[Page 1344]

My volunteer work over the past 15 years with single parents in this province has opened my eyes to a lot of inequality in many ways. It still amazes me, two months after the election, that I, a single mom, am even here. It is not a surprise as much as it is an honour and a privilege that would never have come about if it wasn't for the progressive and fair and equitable policies of the political Party to which I proudly belong. (Applause)

Members of the other Parties, especially on the opposite side of this House have taken great pleasure in taking pot-shots about the socialists over here on this side of the House, well, from my perspective, I say thank God for the democratic socialists over here. That's another thing I've noticed, government members have completely forgotten about the word democratic. It seems like ever since, maybe amalgamation, especially the word democratic, and all derivatives of that word, such as democracy have gone totally out of their vocabularies, maybe, even been wiped out of their minds. And this is the reason I think, that they can never refer to our political philosophy in the correct way. It is democratic socialism. It means that everyone deserves to be treated equally, to be consulted when major decisions affecting the quality of their lives is at stake. It's what's happening in Saskatchewan, and sometimes it means that we wear sandals to work and ponytails, and that's just the guys. (Laughter)

The New Democratic Party is all-inclusive, and the truth of that sits on this side of the House tonight. It is obviously apparent that this Party represents more of the cross-section of Nova Scotian society than this Legislature has ever seen before. This is just a beginning. The democratic socialist hordes are holding a come as you are party, and the people of Nova Scotia love it. (Applause)

The people of Nova Scotia know that it includes them, everybody, of every economic class, of every culture, and of every gender and ability. And these real people also know that the true, big red scare sits right over there on the other side of the House. (Applause)

Our NDP candidates went door to door and we listened. The voters of this province felt heard for the first time in many years. They know that Robert Chisholm and the New Democrats will act on what we heard, and provide proper representation for all their concerns. American President, Franklyn Delano Roosevelt said something to the effect of, be sincere, be brief, be seated. And so I will end with one more quote from the Millwood Speech from the Throne, it said, "These troubling times must be discussed and leadership is a key to all of this. More than anything, it can be described in one word: Hope!".

Mr. Speaker, hope is what all young people have for the future. I ask the government not to let it be the only thing young people have for the future. They need schools, they need affordable education, they need a health care system that meets their needs, no matter what their economic means, and they need jobs. The Speech from the Throne, as given on May 21, 1998, does not address many of the needs and concerns of my constituents, and for that reason, I will be voting against the main motion, and in support of the amendment. (Applause)

[Page 1345]

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. MANNING MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, due to the lateness of the hour, I would ask that we do now adjourn until tomorrow, from 12:00 to 6:00 p.m. Following the daily routine tomorrow and Question Period, we will again be dealing with Supply unto Her Majesty. So I do now move that we adjourn for the evening.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is to adjourn.

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

We stand adjourned.

[The House rose at 9:30 p.m.]