The Nova Scotia Legislature

The House resumed on:
September 21, 2017.

Hansard -- Fri., June 11, 1999

First Session

FRIDAY, JUNE 11, 1999

TABLE OF CONTENTS PAGE
PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS:
Fish. - Seniors: Licences - Fees Exempt, Mr. B. Taylor 7119
TABLING REPORTS, REGULATIONS AND OTHER PAPERS:
Supplementary Detail Health Investment Fund
for the fiscal year 1999-2000, Hon. D. Downe 7120
Anl. Rept. of the Department of Human Resources, Hon. F. Cosman 7120
STATEMENTS BY MINISTERS:
Fin.: Health Investment Fund - Supplementary Expenditure Detail,
Hon. D. Downe 7120
GOVERNMENT NOTICES OF MOTION:
Res. 3375, Lbr.: Davis (Miners' Memorial) Day - Remembrance,
Hon. R. MacKinnon 7123
Vote - Affirmative 7123
Res. 3376, SCS: Senior Citizens' Day (N.S.) (16/06/99) - Declare,
The Premier 7123
Vote - Affirmative 7124
Res. 3377, Nat. Res. - Parks: Use - Encourage, Hon. K. MacAskill 7124
Vote - Affirmative 7125
NOTICES OF MOTION:
Res. 3378, Lbr. - William Davis: Memory - Silence Observe,
Ms. Helen MacDonald 7125
Vote - Affirmative 7126
Res. 3379, Justice - Pub. Prosecution Serv.: Changes - Implement,
Dr. J. Hamm 7126
Res. 3380, Health - Cobequid Multi-Service Centre Fdn.: Fun Fair -
Best Wishes Extend, Mr. J. Holm 7126
Vote - Affirmative 7127
Res. 3381, Lbr. - Rodd Grand Hotel (Yar.): Negotiated Settlement -
Seek, Mr. N. LeBlanc 7127
Vote - Affirmative 7128
Res. 3382, Justice - Osgoode Hall Law School (Gold Medal-1999):
Connie MacIntosh (Hfx.) - Congrats., Mr. Kevin Deveaux 7128
Vote - Affirmative 7129
Res. 3383, Transport. & Pub. Wks. - One-Way Street Politics:
Tiresome - Recognize, Mr. B. Taylor 7129
Res. 3384, Health - Investment Fund: Requirement - Recognize,
Mr. L. Montgomery 7129
Res. 3385, Educ. - Hfx. Reg. Sch. Bd.: PALS - Commend,
Ms. Y. Atwell 7130
Vote - Affirmative 7131
Res. 3386, Indust. (Can.) - Nat. Aboriginal Econ. Dev. Bd.:
Keith Julien (Millbrook) - App't. Congrats., Mr. J. Muir 7131
Vote - Affirmative 7131
Res. 3387, CBC Radio - Information Morning: Anniv. 29th -
Congrats., Mr. G. Fogarty 7131
Vote - Affirmative 7132
Res. 3388, Educ. - P3: Canning & Kentville (Kings Co.) -
Site Selection Promise-Broken Regret, Mr. D. Chard 7132
Res. 3389, Environ. - Water Testing: Downloading -
Concerns Address, Mr. J. DeWolfe 7133
Res. 3390, Nat. Res. - Non-Resident Ownership: Land Disclosure Act -
Replace, Mr. W. Estabrooks 7134
Res. 3391, Culture - South Shore Arts Festival (1999): Efforts -
Congrats., Mr. M. Baker 7134
Vote - Affirmative 7135
Res. 3392, Health - Plan: Debt - Awareness, Ms. Maureen MacDonald 7135
Res. 3393, Pub. Serv. (Can.) - Info-Fair (SMU 1999):
N.S. Fed. Council - Efforts Recognize, Mr. G. Balser 7136
Vote - Affirmative 7136
Res. 3394, Digby-Anna. MLA - Whale Watching Interpretive Ctr.
(Pleasant Bay [C.B.]): Patronage Suggestions - Apologize,
Mr. Charles MacDonald 7137
Res. 3395, Culture - Heatherbell Girls Pipe and Drum Band (Pictou):
Calgary Stampede Participants - Congrats., Mr. C. Parker 7137
Vote - Affirmative 7138
Res. 3396, Educ. - Museum Day Weekend (12-13/06/99):
Designation - Note, Mr. E. Fage 7138
Vote - Affirmative 7139
Res. 3397, NDP (N.S.) Leader - Health Care System Sustainable:
Abandonment - Explain, Mr. H. Fraser 7139
Res. 3398, Gore District Fire Dept.: Anniv. 30th - Congrats.,
Mr. John MacDonell 7139
Vote - Affirmative 7140
Res. 3399, Housing & Mun. Affs. - Local Gov't. Ldr. Prog Banff:
Scholarship 1999 - UNSM Support Congrats./Jeff Lawrence
(CAO-Hantsport) Applaud, Mr. J. Leefe 7140
Vote - Affirmative 7141
Res. 3400, Tech. & Sc. Sec't. - Innovacorp/TARA: IT Support -
Congrats., Mr. P. Delefes 7141
Vote - Affirmative 7141
Res. 3401, Sports - Hockey: House of Assembly - Word Use Limit,
Ms. E. O'Connell 7142
Res. 3402, Educ. - NSTU: Sheonoroil - Congrats., Ms. Helen MacDonald 7142
Vote - Affirmative 7143
Res. 3403, Educ. - Primary Progs.: Cuts - Responsibility Take,
Mr. Kevin Deveaux 7143
Res. 3404, Sports - Softball (N.S.-Upper Rawdon [04/06/99]):
Organizers/Participants - Congrats., Mr. John MacDonell 7144
Vote - Affirmative 7144
Res. 3405, Sports - Track & Field (N.S. HS): Participants - Congrats.,
Mr. P. Delefes 7144
Vote - Affirmative 7145
Res. 3406, Sports: Basketball (Prospect Rd. League) - Congrats.,
Mr. W. Estabrooks 7145
Vote - Affirmative 7146
Res. 3407, Exco - Bad News Deadline: Date (21/06/99) - Set,
Mr. J. Holm 7146
GOVERNMENT BUSINESS:
GOVERNMENT MOTIONS:
ON MOTION FOR SUPPLY:
Mr. J. Muir 7147
Ms. E. O'Connell 7151
Mr. M. Baker 7154
HOUSE RESOLVED INTO CWH ON SUPPLY AT 11:24 A.M. 7157
HOUSE RECONVENED AT 3:24 P.M. 7157
PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES:
Law Amendments Committee, Hon. R. Harrison 7157
ADJOURNMENT, House rose to meet again on Mon., June 14th at 3:00 p.m. 7158

[Page 7119]

HALIFAX, FRIDAY, JUNE 11, 1999

Fifty-seventh General Assembly

First Session

10:00 A.M.

SPEAKER

Hon. Ronald Russell

DEPUTY SPEAKER

Mr. Donald Chard

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

PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS

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

MR. BROOKE TAYLOR: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition signed by a number of Nova Scotians. Again, they are petitioning, ". . . the Minister of Fisheries to eliminate the charge for fishing licenses levied against the senior citizens of the province of Nova Scotia as agreed by resolution in the Nova Scotia Legislature.".

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES

TABLING REPORTS, REGULATIONS AND OTHER PAPERS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Finance.

7119

[Page 7120]

HON. DONALD DOWNE: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table the Supplementary Detail to the Health Investment Fund for the fiscal year 1999-2000.

MR. SPEAKER: The report is tabled. (Applause)

The honourable Minister of Community Services.

HON. FRANCENE COSMAN: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table the Annual Report of the Department of Human Resources.

MR. SPEAKER: The report is tabled.

STATEMENTS BY MINISTERS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Finance.

HON. DONALD DOWNE: Mr. Speaker, on June 1st, I had the privilege of introducing the provincial budget for this year, a budget that will take Nova Scotia into the next century. The centrepiece of the document is the Health Investment Fund. This devotes $600 million over the next three years to improve health care in Nova Scotia. This money is above and beyond the regular budget for the Health Department; this fund has a very specific mandate.

Today, Mr. Speaker, I have tabled the Supplementary Expenditure Detail of the Health Investment Fund for the period 1999-2000. This document is provided to the members of the House of Assembly for their information. It will help answer their questions about how the Health Investment Fund will be used over the next three years.

The amounts provided here are estimates, Mr. Speaker, and I remind the House that the terms and conditions governing the actual expenditures of the fund are detailed in Bill No. 113, The Financial Measures (1999) Act.

Mr. Speaker, I also want to take a moment before the House today to explain the process that has brought us to this point. This government's promise to the stakeholders in health care has been to guarantee their involvement and input into the implementation of the Health Investment Fund. The Health Investment Fund is the product of a long, hard and serious look at health care in this province.

Over the past number of years, we have conducted various studies on the needs of the system, involving extensive consultations with Nova Scotians from Cape Breton to Yarmouth. It is clear we need to stabilize the current system, while we make investments in areas that will help ease the pressure of our reliance on expensive acute care.

[Page 7121]

Over the past number of months, more focused consultations with stakeholders have been conducted. Health professionals from all over Nova Scotia shared with us the challenges they face as they look to improve and sustain health care services in our province.

In fact, Mr. Speaker, over the past five weeks, some 50 consultation sessions have been conducted involving stakeholders, health care consumers, and officials from the Department of Health. These sessions told us clearly what needed to happen in health spending.

Mr. Speaker, budget confidentiality dictated the necessity to keep our actual spending numbers out of those discussions, but through our talks we were able to identify key areas Nova Scotians and our health care professionals deemed priorities for investment within the health care system.

Since Budget Day, Mr. Speaker, we have been able to get down to the details. Consultations with stakeholders continued and we have been able to highlight specific expenditures in key areas. That is what I bring to the House today, but I must emphasize to this House, our promise to stakeholders remains firm. We will continue the collaborative relationship we have developed on the Health Investment Fund and will continue to refine details as we move through this process with them. That is what they have asked for and that is what we have agreed to.

Mr. Speaker, we will continue to bring details on the investment spending to the House as part of this open and transparent process. Our health care stakeholders are working on the front lines providing care to our people each and every day, they see the need, they deserve a say on how we proceed.

Mr. Speaker, I want to conclude by congratulating and thanking Nova Scotia health care providers and stakeholders for their hard work and dedication to this, the priority Nova Scotians rank as their highest - attention to health care. I want to thank them for working with us in a proactive and positive way on this ground-breaking approach to making Nova Scotia better.

Mr. Speaker, I have tabled the Supplementary Detail for the Health Investment Fund for the fiscal year 1999-2000. I thank you very much. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Halifax Chebucto.

MR. HOWARD EPSTEIN: Mr. Speaker, unfortunately for the minister, he can't pull this particular hot potato out of the fire without burning his fingers. This budget has been so universally reviled that this late arriving statement that says, "Since Budget Day, Mr. Speaker, we have been able to get down to details.", will fool no one.

[Page 7122]

This budget presents a huge range of problems for the government, not the least of which is the fact that it came without having been well-thought through. This last arriving statement does not substitute for a detailed plan that should have been available, if the government proposed to spend this amount of money.

The basic problem is that the government has not well-managed the health care system and has not been able to demonstrate, to anyone, that the amount of money they propose now to add to the provincial debt is going to help in any way to relieve the problems that they have allowed to develop on their watch in the health care system, nor does the Supplementary Detail tabled today help us understand how it is that the new proposed legislation in which the Minister of Health and the Minister of Finance will bind themselves together as a team entered into a three-legged race to jointly administer this special fund will manage to get along together. There are no convincing details that have ever been put forward, and this statement does not convince any of us. Thank you. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Argyle.

MR. NEIL LEBLANC: Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the minister for offering us a copy of his statement. What I would like to say first of all, though our Party has been adamant in looking for further details, and the minister today tables in the House a Supplementary Detail to Health Investment Fund, the obvious question is that we are two-thirds of the way through the estimates, and just yesterday we finalized our estimates of the Finance Department and the Health was concluded earlier in the week. As we get these details here today, it begs the question as to why this information wasn't tabled at the same time as all the other documents in regard to the budget.

Mr. Speaker, what happens is that all Nova Scotians are asking us as responsible legislators to be asking questions as to whether or not this makes sense. I want to say first of all, very clearly, that there are many things in the health system that are required, there are many things in this plan that is being purported that perhaps we can individually support. I don't argue that. There is much to be done in the health sector that has to be addressed.

Mr. Speaker, there has been mismanagement, and everyone agrees. To look at this whole budget, it is an admission that health care is in trouble. To say anything other than that isn't the truth, it admits that there are problems in health care, and that is the first time that this government has admitted that.

Mr. Speaker, I look at this announcement today, and obviously I haven't had a chance to go through it. Our caucus will be reviewing it. We are going to be responsible. I still say, this should have been tabled at the time of the budget so that when the estimates were being done, we would have had the opportunity to go through this with the ministers responsible. Thank you. (Applause)

[Page 7123]

GOVERNMENT NOTICES OF MOTION

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Labour.

RESOLUTION NO. 3375

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

Whereas today, Friday, June 11th, people in Nova Scotia mining communities will be observing Davis Day, in memory of Cape Breton miner, Bill Davis, who was killed in 1925, while fighting for the rights of miners; and

Whereas the commemoration of Mr. Davis' tragic death during a confrontation at Waterford Lake has evolved into a Miners' Memorial Day, a day of remembrance for all workers killed in mines in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas this government has been diligent in its efforts to improve Nova Scotia's workplace health and safety rules, and is working with all stakeholders in a shared responsibility approach;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House and the citizens of this province take time today to remember miners who have died while on the job and for all of us to renew our commitment to creating safe and healthy workplaces.

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 Premier.

RESOLUTION NO. 3376

HON. RUSSELL MACLELLAN, Q.C. (The Premier): Mr. Speaker, I hereby give notice that on a future day I shall move the adoption of the following resolution:

[Page 7124]

Whereas June 13th to June 19th has been proclaimed as Senior Citizens' Week in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas during that week public attention will be particularly directed to senior citizens and the celebrations of the International Year of the Older Person; and

Whereas the world's population is rapidly ageing and seniors' contributions to the community, family and the economy deserve to be recognized;

Therefore be it resolved that this House declare Wednesday, June 16th, as Senior Citizens' Day in Nova Scotia to further acknowledge the valuable contribution seniors make to this province.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[10:15 a.m.]

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 Natural Resources.

RESOLUTION NO. 3377

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

Whereas approximately 2 million people from Nova Scotia, Canada and around the world visit the 128 parks and campgrounds in Nova Scotia each year; and

Whereas we continue to improve our park system with new construction, a registration system and a pilot project for reservations; and

Whereas by this weekend all our parks will be open for the summer for the enjoyment of campers, hikers, swimmers and others;

[Page 7125]

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House encourage Nova Scotians and visitors to our province to use our parks for all the opportunities and recreational value they provide and extend best wishes to our park staff for a successful year.

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

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

INTRODUCTION OF BILLS

NOTICES OF MOTION

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

RESOLUTION NO. 3378

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

Whereas miners and mining communities across the province mark today, June 11th, as Davis Day; and

Whereas on this day in 1925, a New Waterford miner named William Davis was shot and killed by security police during a bitter strike; and

Whereas Davis Day is an important and meaningful day for miners and for the communities that were built by miners;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House observe a moment of silence in memory of William Davis and for all of those who have lost their lives in the pursuit of justice, dignity, and a decent livelihood for miners and their families.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver.

[Page 7126]

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

I will ask the honourable members to join with me in a moment of silence.

[One minute of silence was observed.]

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the Progressive Conservative Party.

RESOLUTION NO. 3379

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

Whereas the Liberal Government has received two comprehensive external reports complete with recommendations on the Public Prosecution Service in five years; and

Whereas these reports have urged the government to move immediately to address issues of compensation, leadership, and morale within the service; and

Whereas when asked to provide a time-frame as to when the latest round of recommendation will be implemented the minister indicated that he needed three more weeks;

Therefore be it resolved that the Liberal Government and the Minister of Justice commit to ensuring that they will implement the changes necessary for a strong, vibrant and effective Public Prosecution Service with expedience.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Sackville-Cobequid.

RESOLUTION NO. 3380

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

[Page 7127]

Whereas the Cobequid Multi-Service Centre's Foundation will hold its annual Fun Fair on Saturday, June 12th at Sackville High School; and

Whereas funds raised will be used by the foundation to help purchase needed equipment for the Cobequid Multi-Service Centre; and

Whereas the foundation will be assisted by many staff community volunteers and other local service clubs;

Therefore be it resolved that this House extend its best wishes for a successful Fun Fair and its appreciation to the countless volunteers who are making it all possible.

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

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Argyle.

RESOLUTION NO. 3381

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

Whereas a labour dispute at the Rodd's Grand Hotel in Yarmouth is currently in its 57th day; and

Whereas this dispute is taking its toll on the workers, the hotel and the tourism industry in Yarmouth County; and

Whereas this dispute can only be resolved by way of negotiations between the two parties;

Therefore be it resolved that even though the lockout has polarized both parties, that they attempt to sit down together to somehow find a negotiated settlement to this ongoing strike.

[Page 7128]

Mr. Speaker, I would 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 Dartmouth-Cole Harbour on an introduction.

MR. DARRELL DEXTER: Mr. Speaker, I would like to draw your attention and the attention of the House to students who are with us here today in the west gallery. This is the political science class from the Adult High School, Cole Harbour site, and with them is their leader, Kim Welsman. I would ask the House to extend a welcome to them. (Applause)

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

RESOLUTION NO. 3382

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

Whereas Connie MacIntosh of Halifax has won the gold medal at Osgoode Hall Law School as the top student at that school; and

Whereas the Chronicle-Herald has stated that Osgoode Hall is one of Canada's most prestigious law schools; and

Whereas Ms. MacIntosh is a shining example of those rare Nova Scotians who have chosen to study at the prestigious law school;

Therefore be it resolved that this House congratulate Ms. MacIntosh on her award, which places her among Canada's top law students.

Mr. Speaker, I ask for waiver.

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

Is it agreed?

[Page 7129]

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley.

RESOLUTION NO. 3383

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

Whereas for minority government to work in Nova Scotia it must be, at the very least, a two-way street; and

Whereas for well over a year now the Liberals have operated completely on a one-way street; and

Whereas the Liberals' one-way street, while paved with new asphalt, has left mostly potholes and a bumpy ride for Nova Scotians;

Therefore be it resolved that the Premier and the Minister of Transportation and Public Works recognize that Nova Scotians are getting tired of the Liberal rough ride.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Annapolis.

RESOLUTION NO. 3384

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

Whereas the cost of providing health care to Nova Scotians is rising at a rate of 11 per cent a year, which means an increase of $1.1 billion in the next four years; and

Whereas a recent poll performed by a Dartmouth-based research company indicates that three out of four Nova Scotians want a quality health care system; and

Whereas the Government of Nova Scotia is prepared to invest $600 million over the next three years to provide the quality care Nova Scotians deserve;

[Page 7130]

Therefore be it resolved that this House recognize the majority of Nova Scotians would like this government to reinvest in their health care system now.

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 Preston.

RESOLUTION NO. 3385

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

Whereas the Preston Area Learning Skills, PALS, established in 1986, is a community-based program in partnership with the Adult Vocational Training Campus, the Halifax Regional School Board and the PALS Advisory Committee; and

Whereas this program provides basic upgrading, plus pre-GED skills, to learners at home as well as within the Preston community; and

Whereas this year's PALS closing exercise will be held on Friday, June 11th, at Nelson Whynder Elementary School in North Preston;

Therefore be it resolved that this House commend the efforts of this community-based program.

Mr. Speaker, I 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.

[Page 7131]

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Truro-Bible Hill.

RESOLUTION NO. 3386

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

Whereas Keith Julien of the Millbrook First Nation Community has been appointed to Industry Canada's National Aboriginal Economic Development Board as the Nova Scotia member; and

Whereas the National Aboriginal Economic Development Board plays a vital role in guiding Aboriginal Business Canada programs which offer services and support to new and existing aboriginal entrepreneurs; and

Whereas the federal Minister of Industry, John Manley, said Mr. Julian will bring entrepreneurial knowledge and experience in a wide variety of business ventures to the board;

Therefore be it resolved that the House recognize Keith Julian for the contributions he has made to the economic, educational and social fabric of his community and wish him every success as he offers his many talents for the benefit of our country as a whole.

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 Bedford Basin.

RESOLUTION NO. 3387

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

[Page 7132]

Whereas this morning CBC Radio's Information Morning celebrated its birthday in front of a live audience at Pier 22 on the Halifax waterfront; and

Whereas this is the 25th birthday party for Information Morning which is in its 29th year of broadcasting; and

Whereas over the years the hosts of Information Morning, Don Connolly, Elizabeth Logan and John Hancock, have been very supportive of Nova Scotia communities and today's party was no exception with donations being solicited for the food bank - I might add, Mr. Speaker, the show is better than it used to be;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House congratulate CBC Radio's Information Morning on another informative year of bringing news, sports and entertainment to Nova Scotians.

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

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

Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Dartmouth South.

RESOLUTION NO. 3388

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

Whereas some 300 Kings County residents met last night to express their concerns about plans for another P3 school in their area; and

Whereas residents are angry that a private company is dictating the location of that school, bypassing any valid local process to shape the Kings County school system for future generations; and

Whereas residents were told that the school board's hands are tied by the provincial government's very limited options;

[Page 7133]

Therefore be it resolved that this House regrets the latest evidence that this Liberal Government has broken its promise that P3 would not mean private profit dictates the shape of public school education in Nova Scotia.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear several Noes.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Pictou East.

RESOLUTION NO. 3389

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 issue of downloading of water testing to municipal governments was raised with the Minister of the Environment in March of this year; and

Whereas when asked if he would rescind the directive the minister refused, adding that there had been adequate consultation with the municipal units on the issue; and

Whereas the issue of municipal involvement in bacteria water testing remains outstanding with the Nova Scotia municipalities;

Therefore be it resolved that the Minister of the Environment act in a manner that is responsive to the concerns of Nova Scotia's municipal units and the UNSM and review the issue in the interest of fairness.

Mr. Speaker, I ask for waiver.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear several Noes.

The notice is tabled.

[Page 7134]

The honourable member for Timberlea-Prospect.

RESOLUTION NO. 3390

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 special committee of senior bureaucrats from the Departments of Natural Resources, Finance, and Housing and Municipal Affairs has been formed to study the issue of non-resident ownership of land across this province; and

Whereas the 1973 Land Disclosure Act is woefully inadequate to address this problem; and

Whereas Nova Scotians can tell this committee of many incidents where they have been denied access to coastal properties and other land traditionally used for recreational purposes;

Therefore be it resolved that the ministers of these departments instruct staff to report as soon as possible on their findings and to introduce necessary legislation to replace the Land Disclosure Act.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Lunenburg.

RESOLUTION NO. 3391

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

Whereas the South Shore Festival of the Arts is an ongoing celebration of creativity this year along the South Shore; and

Whereas the festival will showcase the talents of artists between Hubbards and Shelburne County; and

Whereas Gala Days for the year's Festival of the Arts will be staged September 16th to September 19th with a wide variety of arts, crafts and heritage on display;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this Legislature recognize the significant work and efforts being done by the festival organizers to showcase the many talents of South Shore artists and wish them every success throughout the year.

[Page 7135]

[10:30 a.m.]

Mr. Speaker, I 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.

RESOLUTION NO. 3392

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

Whereas the present Health Minister was his Party's Health Critic when he took the lead in crafting the 1993 Liberal platform that promised to de-emphasize hospital care, act instead of study and improve health; and

Whereas the minister and his colleagues have had six years to gain a better understanding of how to improve support to front-line health care workers; and

Whereas nevertheless, two weeks after urging that Nova Scotians pay another mortgage for health care, the Liberals are still looking for ideas instead of presenting a plan;

Therefore be it resolved that Nova Scotians know they are hearing the sounds of an empty vessel when the only Liberal health plan, after six years in power, is recycled promises and higher debt.

Mr. Speaker, I seek waiver.

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

Is it agreed?

I hear several Noes.

[Page 7136]

The notice is tabled. The notice is also a little long.

The honourable member for Halifax Bedford Basin on an introduction.

MR. GERALD FOGARTY: Mr. Speaker, to you and through you to all members of the House of Assembly, I would like to introduce in the east gallery, 21 Grade 4 students and their leader Lucille Aucoin, as well as other adults who have accompanied them here today to the House of Assembly. They are from Grosvenor-Wentworth Park Elementary School in my riding of Halifax Bedford Basin. Would all members please give them a warm welcome to the House of Assembly. (Applause)

The honourable member for Digby-Annapolis.

RESOLUTION NO. 3393

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

Whereas June 13th to June 19th is National Public Service Week; and

Whereas this year the Nova Scotia Federal Council is hosting a two day Info-Fair at Saint Mary's University; and

Whereas the aim of the Info-Fair is to emphasize the accomplishments and contributions that Nova Scotia public servants make to their community;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House recognize the efforts of the Federal Council in showcasing career and learning opportunities in the Public Service, and wish them success with the Info-Fair as well as throughout the week's activities.

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 Inverness.

[Page 7137]

RESOLUTION NO. 3394

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

Whereas on Wednesday, June 9th, the member for Digby-Annapolis asked the Minister of Economic Development and Tourism a question about the cost of the Whale Watching Interpretive Centre for Pleasant Bay, Cape Breton; and

Whereas the member for Digby-Annapolis alleged that the government contributed to the Pleasant Bay Whale Watching Interpretive Centre for political reasons; and

Whereas the community of Pleasant Bay has worked many hard, long years since the downturn of the fishery to establish a viable economic operation in the community;

Therefore be it resolved that the member for Digby-Annapolis apologize to the people of Pleasant Bay and congratulate them on their efforts, over many years, to turn their community's economy around.

Mr. Speaker, I seek 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 West.

RESOLUTION NO. 3395

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 Heatherbell Girls Pipe and Drum Band of Pictou has been invited to participate in this year's Calgary Stampede; and

Whereas the Heatherbells have proven themselves to be excellent promoters of our culture and communities, and project a very positive image of Nova Scotia; and

[Page 7138]

Whereas the Heatherbells have successfully raised over $50,000 to pay for the costs associated with travelling to the Calgary Stampede;

Therefore be it resolved that this House congratulate the Heatherbell Girls Pipe and Drum Band on their fund-raising efforts and on behalf of all Nova Scotians, bid them Godspeed and good luck.

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 Cumberland North.

RESOLUTION NO. 3396

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

Whereas Nova Scotia's museums play a significant role in preserving local culture and natural history; and

Whereas Saturday and Sunday, June 12th and June 13th, is Museum Day Weekend; and

Whereas activities are planned to meet all interests in more than 55 communities across Nova Scotia;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House take note of the special designation of Museum Day Weekend and recognize the unique and significant perspectives and historical records offered by our provincial museums.

Mr. Speaker, I respectfully request waiver of notice.

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

Is it agreed?

[Page 7139]

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 Antigonish.

RESOLUTION NO. 3397

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

Whereas the innovative Health Investment Fund introduced by this Liberal Government has received support from the Medical Society of Nova Scotia; and

Whereas in a letter to the editor, the president of the Nova Scotia College of Family Physicians wrote, congratulations to the provincial government for having the courage to make this important investment; and

Whereas Nova Scotia nurses have indicated the Health Investment Fund is a good first step and 76 per cent of Nova Scotians say the government is on the right track with the budget;

Therefore be it resolved that the Leader of the NDP explain to health care providers, and the majority of Nova Scotians, why the NDP has abandoned those who count on a sustainable health care system in favour of bean-counting.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Hants East.

RESOLUTION NO. 3398

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

Whereas volunteer firefighters are an integral part of fire protection services in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas volunteer firefighters serve as an important social focus for the formation and function of other support groups such as the Ladies Auxiliary; and

[Page 7140]

Whereas the Gore District Volunteer Fire Department has served its community in a variety of ways for 30 years and has just celebrated its 30th Anniversary;

Therefore be it resolved that the House of Assembly honour the Gore District Fire Department for its outstanding record of service.

I request waiver, Mr. Speaker.

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 Queens.

RESOLUTION NO. 3399

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

Whereas Jeff Lawrence, Chief Administrative Officer of the Town of Hantsport, was awarded the 1999 UNSM Scholarship to attend the Local Government Leadership Program in Banff; and

Whereas discussion at the Banff Institute focused on such issues as downloading, the Municipal Government Act, leadership and legal issues; and

Whereas Mr. Lawrence has recently reported to the UNSM on his trip noting that his experiences were valuable and rewarding;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House congratulate the UNSM for supporting this valuable scholarship and applaud the hard work of Jeff Lawrence upon successful completion of the Banff Local Government Leadership Course.

Mr. Speaker, I seek waiver of notice.

[Page 7141]

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.

RESOLUTION NO. 3400

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

Whereas recently Innovacorp and TARA, the Telecom Applications Research Alliance, announced a partnership agreement to support emerging information technology companies in Nova Scotia; and

Whereas the partners will each provide $1 million towards an investment fund to be invested in information technology companies with high growth potential; and

Whereas the partnership will provide additional capital to TARA to target early-stage companies securing for them $100,000 to $300,000 in venture financing;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House congratulate these two enterprises focused on technology commercialization and on promoting Nova Scotia's growing IT sector.

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 7142]

The honourable member for Halifax Fairview.

RESOLUTION NO. 3401

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 this Chamber and its environs for some months now have been filled with statements, gibes, metaphors and primal grunts on the subject of hockey - NHL, major, minor, old-timers, Junior A, Triple A, Bantam, Atom and so on; and

Whereas the female representatives of this House have seen fit to spare their colleagues chit chat about creative hamburger cookery, removing ink stains from polyester or what time to arrive for $1.44 day; and

Whereas traditionally women wear white shoes only between Victoria Day and Labour Day;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this House resolve not to mention the word "hockey" during white shoe season unless God herself instructs them to do so.

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 Cape Breton The Lakes.

RESOLUTION NO. 3402

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

Whereas as a result of a provincial survey on school violence, the NSTU organized a 400 person successful symposium on school violence; and

Whereas as a result of this symposium, the NSTU published an anti-violence resource library for every school and school board in Nova Scotia; and

[Page 7143]

Whereas the NSTU has established Sheonoroil, a foundation to address the concerns of public school teachers with respect to violence;

Therefore be it resolved that this House congratulate the NSTU on its most ambitious endeavour, Sheonoroil and wish them every success.

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 Cole Harbour-Eastern Passage.

RESOLUTION NO. 3403

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

Whereas parents and students throughout the Halifax Regional Municipality are concerned with the possible cuts to Primary class programs; and

Whereas cuts to the Primary program will have a particularly harsh impact on suburban communities; and

Whereas the Halifax Regional School Board has been placed in the position of potentially cutting programs because of long-term provincial funding cuts;

Therefore be it resolved that this Liberal Government take responsibility for the cutting of Primary programs and the negative impact it will have on our youngest citizens.

Mr. Speaker, I ask for waiver.

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

Is it agreed?

[Page 7144]

I hear a No.

The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Hants East.

RESOLUTION NO. 3404

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

Whereas community events require the efforts of many people; and

Whereas organizing committees and participants seldom get the recognition they deserve; and

Whereas the Hants North Rural High School community hosted the Provincial Softball Tournament in Upper Rawdon on Friday, June 4th;

Therefore be it resolved that this House congratulate the organizers and participants of the Provincial Softball Tournament for a job well done.

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 Halifax Citadel.

RESOLUTION NO. 3405

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

[Page 7145]

Whereas over the past six weeks young Nova Scotian athletes have been competing to qualify for the Provincial High School Track and Field Competitions held this past weekend, June 4th and June 5th in Kentville, Nova Scotia; and

Whereas these young men and women compete in three different age divisions, with winners selected in some 10 to 12 different events; and

Whereas the pursuit of athletic excellence has long been recognized as an integral facet in the development of the whole person, a concept which originated with the ancient Greeks;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House congratulate all the young men and women who participated in the Nova Scotia Provincial High School Track and Field Competitions and the coaches, teachers, and families who support these fine young Nova Scotians in the pursuit of their athletic goals.

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 Timberlea-Prospect.

RESOLUTION NO. 3406

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 Prospect Road Basketball Association has just wound up another successful, fun-filled season; and

Whereas six Prospect teams represented the association in the Halifax Basketball League; and

Whereas Norman Greenberg's mini-team captured a gold and Gary McAvoy's claimed a provincial silver medal;

[Page 7146]

Therefore be it resolved that this House congratulate the players and coaches of the Prospect Road Basketball League for a great season.

Mr. Speaker, I ask 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 Sackville-Cobequid.

RESOLUTION NO. 3407

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

Whereas it is reported today that the Premier has announced that this sitting of the Legislature will end on Friday, June 18th; and

Whereas Nova Scotians can now add clairvoyance to the Premier's well-known ability to hypnotize his federal cousins into treating Nova Scotians fairly and his healing touch for communities losing their schools to the P3 machine; and

Whereas Cabinet Ministers are delaying their bad news announcements until the last week of June and the first week of July;

[10:45 a.m.]

Therefore be it resolved that Cabinet show enough faith in the Premier's foresight to set June 21st, as a deadline for giving Nova Scotians the straight goods on NSRL's debt, the real health care budget, a decision on Crown Attorney's collective bargaining and other bad Liberal news.

Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice.

[Page 7147]

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

Is it agreed?

I hear several Noes.

The notice is tabled. The notice was also a little too long.

ORDERS OF THE DAY

GOVERNMENT BUSINESS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. MANNING MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker would you please call the order of business, Government Motions.

GOVERNMENT MOTIONS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. MANNING MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, I move that you do now leave the Chair and the House resolve itself into a Committee of the Whole House on Supply onto Her Majesty.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Truro-Bible Hill.

MR. JAMES MUIR: Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise this morning to talk a few minutes about my constituency of Truro-Bible Hill. As the members know, it is located in the central part of the province. It is comprised of about 13,000 households (Interruptions) Yes, there are about 13,000 households in my constituency. I am very proud to represent that community, and I think it is one of the outstanding constituencies, if not the outstanding constituency in the Province of Nova Scotia. (Interruptions)

Mr. Speaker, it is an interesting community. There is some industry, but it is also a centre for the county's thriving agricultural industry, and also a centre for a forestry industry. The constituency is diverse, although there is very little farming carried on within the geography of the constituency and also very little actual forestry going on. A good portion of the economic base of the community is derived from the agricultural and the forestry industries. In addition, it has been, for a number of years, an educational centre. Not quite the educational centre it was before 1993 and the changing government, but nevertheless it is still a very good educational centre.

[Page 7148]

I would like to speak just for a minute or so about the Nova Scotia Agricultural College, which is located in the Village of Bible Hill. The Nova Scotia Agricultural College has emerged over the past 10 years to be a leading research institution. (Interruptions)

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please.

MR. MUIR: Indeed, a couple of years ago, once you get past Dalhousie and the Technical University of Nova Scotia, now combined into DalTech, the number of research dollars which flowed into the Nova Scotia Agricultural College were the second greatest in the province. That is quite a tribute to a small college.

I attended its convocation, as did the Minister of Agriculture, and one of the interesting things about the population in that college that I was most interested in and actually as one does from time to time in convocations as they go through the routine things you look for ways to fruitfully fulfil your time, and I started counting up the number of graduates by gender. This year there were, according to my count, more female graduates from the Agricultural College than there were male graduates.

That brings me back to a topic that we had debated in this House sometime ago, a resolution introduced by the member for Preston, we debated about traditional occupations related to gender, and it reinforces a point that I made there, I think the issue of gender equity is not the one that it was a few years ago, at least in terms of occupations.

It was interesting as well, at the Agricultural College, I think there were eight students who received graduate degrees. They get those degrees from Dalhousie, as you know, but they were Master of Science degrees and the people completed all their studies and research at the Nova Scotia Agricultural College, and six of those eight graduates were women, very interesting. I would also say that that college has established itself an international reputation in many of the agricultural sciences. Indeed, people have said it is the best kept educational secret in Nova Scotia. It is one of the best kept educational secrets in Canada.

I would like just to conclude my comments about that, its program, although it is still a small college, it is a very good one. They have recently added a building for an aquaculture program which will enhance the college even more. I think I introduced a resolution in the House at one time, Mr. Speaker, congratulating some of the student athletes from the Nova Scotia Teachers College who were academic and all Canadians. Anyway, the Nova Scotia Agricultural College is a very important part of my community. It is a very important part of this college and in terms of agriculture, it is a very important part of agriculture for Atlantic Canada, indeed, for Canada. Some of the research that goes on there, one of the professors there received an award from the People's Republic of China for research and I did congratulate that person in the House.

[Page 7149]

As well, Mr. Speaker, we have a very large high school in my constituency - the Cobequid Education Centre. It is probably the largest Grade 10 to Grade 12 school in the province and it is another institution that in my community we are extremely proud of. Our academic programs in that high school we feel are second to none in the province and the extracurricular, the wide range of programs provided in that school, are among the very best in the province. I would just draw to the House's attention, for example, about a week ago, I guess probably last weekend, the Nova Scotia Athletic Federation held its track and field championships and for the Triple A schools, which are the large high schools in the province, the Cobequid Education Cougar Team won the Triple A championship. It has done that before, but I what I would like to draw to the attention of the House is, I cannot think of any other sports team in this province that can say that it has won 10 championships in one decade. (Applause) Anyway, that was very interesting.

One of the secrets to the success of that particular athletic program is the high calibre of the staff in that school and the interest that they take, not only in the classroom portion of their duties, but their commitment and their willingness to give time and service over and above what would be required, and a great number of hours to help students develop all aspects of their personality and their lives.

As the Speaker probably knows, the music program at CEC, under the very capable direction now of Mr. Paul Barrett, is recognized across the country for its excellence and, indeed, groups from CEC have won more than one national championship in their music programs. The school play, which is the cultural highlight in many ways, we are thinking of theatre in my community. (Interruption) It has very good actors, yes. Actually I can say it played for, I believe, it was seven nights this year to packed houses and was extremely well received. The interesting thing about the musicals, and they were musicals put on in the school, is that if you were to take the number of young people who participate in those, it is a true, and there must be 100, you know, if you have got a script that calls for 30, they add 30 more. It is not only the people who are physically on stage singing, dancing and extras and all of these things, but the people who build the sets, your props crew, your stage crew, then the publicity and the box offices. It is interesting - I know they do this in other schools - but it is a true partnership, Mr. Speaker, between the students and the school with the support of the community. That is one of the things that really impresses me about that, how the students and faculty collectively attack this thing and do a very good job on it. It is really, I think, one of the great schools in our province.

Another thing about that, just to mention the theatre, Mr. Speaker, there have been at least two people who have gone through that theatre program - if we call it a theatre program - the musical program at CEC who have gone on to professional acting careers. One is a young woman by the name of Lenore Zann who has acted in a number of movies and some of you may have seen her. There is another person by the name of Christian Fletcher and some of you may have seen the serial program in the United States and it runs as a rerun now called The Hitchhiker. The star of that program is a young man who went to CEC and he

[Page 7150]

comes, I believe, from the community of Bass River or Great Village. So I simply draw those two things to your attention, those two individuals, because of the many facets of that school and the community is very proud of it.

Another interesting thing about that school, Mr. Speaker, I would just like to speak on for a minute is, it has been blessed with very strong leadership but you can tell a school, in many ways, by its physical condition. Now I am not talking about whether the building is old or whether it is new. I have been in schools in this province that have been open for six months and looked as though they had been open for 16 years. I have been in schools that have been open for 25 years or 30 years and look as though they have been open for three months. When a physical plant of a building is kept clean and in good repair, then you generally find that there is a high level of learning going on in that building because everybody takes pride in it. The Cobequid Educational Centre opened in 1970 or 1971 and if you were to go into that building today, people would find that its appearance would be that, basically, of a brand new building.

I say that to make another point, Mr. Speaker. In this Legislature, there has been a lot of talk about new schools and methods of financing new schools and P3 versus the government borrowing money, perhaps, from the Municipal Finance Corporation or allowing communities to buy schools and build them, but all I want to say is that if anybody in this Legislature thinks that constructing new schools and filling them with all kinds of technology - which, basically, in a lot of cases may not be fully used anyway - is going to guarantee a high quality of education for our young people, they are sadly mistaken. What makes schools and what goes on in that classroom between the teacher and pupils and the atmosphere of the school, it is a school atmosphere and buildings aren't going to do it.

I think sometimes people have the illusion that we must change the building and not fix up the old one. Now I am not suggesting for a minute that there aren't a lot of schools in this province that need to be replaced but what I am saying is that we should be spending a lot more time on how to improve what happens in the classroom and to improve how we can help teachers better work with our young people. The building is a means to an end. I hear some of the comments by some of the honourable members and it appears as though the building is an end in itself. I think that is a mistake and I read some of the public comments and I get that feeling too.

Mr. Speaker, one of the other aspects from our community which I am very proud of is the aboriginal community, the Millbrook First Nation Community. I was pleased this morning to be able to read a resolution about a man, an entrepreneur . . .

AN HON. MEMBER: And a hockey player.

[Page 7151]

MR. MUIR: Yes, a hockey player, too, by the name of Keith Julien, who runs a gas bar. He and his wife, Theresa Isaac Julien who is a very well-known educator in the province, have been leaders not only in their own community, but in my community as a whole.

[11:00 a.m.]

There are a number of other people there. For example, Stephen Marshall, who was head of the Native Loggers Association whose leadership carries well beyond Millbrook, is in my community. Clara Gloade, who was head of the Native Women's Association in Millbrook, makes an outstanding contribution not only in her own community, but in the broader community as well.

Mr. Speaker, with that, I will sit down. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Halifax Fairview.

MS. EILEEN O'CONNELL: Mr. Speaker, I rise today to speak about an issue and a problem in my constituency. Although there are lots of positive things that can be said, I want to use what little time I have today to outline for the House a serious problem that has become a horrendous problem in Halifax Fairview. There are lots and lots of problems that a government can do nothing about, but this is a problem that the government could do something about. You might even be able to say that it would change the lives of some people in Halifax Fairview, if the government would address this problem. It relates to traffic and transportation.

There is probably no one in this House, and probably no one in this province who has ever been to Halifax, who doesn't know two things. One, the old City of Halifax is on a peninsula, and that limits access to downtown Halifax. The second thing people probably know, including the members of this House, is that one of the ways into Halifax and one of the most heavily used routes into Halifax is the Bicentennial Highway, the Halifax end of Highway No. 102.

Mr. Speaker, I want to describe for the members what happens when traffic, including huge transport trucks, come down the Bicentennial Highway on Highway No. 102 and off the ramp right into Fairview proper on Dutch Village Road. What happens is this, the Bicentennial Highway, first of all, runs parallel to a very long street called School Avenue. School Avenue has homes on one side only, and on the other side is the Department of Transportation fence which divides the street from the highway.

Problem number one is the noise which is almost unbearable for the people of School Avenue. The constituents tell me that they can't open their doors and windows in the summer because of the incredible noise of the truck traffic and the other traffic coming down the Bicentennial Highway. There is a secondary problem, if you want to call it that - there is a

[Page 7152]

complementary problem, if you like - and that is an incredible pile-up of garbage as travellers on the highway discard their wrappers and what not and the wind blows it either over the fence or up against the fence. Very often the regional municipality has to come along, because the residents of School Avenue have begged to have their street cleaned up.

Mr. Speaker, that is just the first problem with the highway. I hesitate to say the bigger problem because School Avenue is frequently unliveable for the residents and it is difficult for them to sell their homes because of the noise and the garbage, but the other problem is that when the traffic comes down the Bicentennial Highway, it comes off the ramp, it goes for about 100 yards on Dutch Village Road and then it has to make a right turn at a tiny little intersection - which the members may be familiar with - at Joseph Howe Drive, Dutch Village Road and Bayers Road. There is a service station on one side and a church on the other and a railway track running across the intersection.

Mr. Speaker, that intersection is so small that one transport truck making a right turn there fills up the whole intersection and blocks the traffic for a period of time. There are hundreds . . .

MR. SPEAKER: I wonder if I could interrupt the honourable member just for a moment for a brief introduction by the honourable member for Dartmouth North.

MS. O'CONNELL: Absolutely, Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Dartmouth North.

MR. JERRY PYE: Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and I want to thank my colleague for yielding the floor. In the west gallery are 27 students from John Martin Junior High. They are with teachers, Donna MacKenzie, Shelley Meister and Eileen Doleman. I would like them to stand and the House to give them a very warm welcome. (Applause) If I may, I also want the House to know that I informed them that budget deliberations are now in progress and that, in fact, this Legislature will be debating those budget items. Thank you.

MS. O'CONNELL: Mr. Speaker, this tiny, little intersection, which I had just mentioned a moment ago, is congested for most of every single day. There is no such thing as a non-rush hour period at this intersection. I want to tell you just how bad it is at this intersection. People who live on Rosedale Avenue, which is one street over from School Avenue, who go home for lunch and have to go through this intersection, when they leave their homes after lunch, they are either late for work or sometimes they cannot get out of that intersection at all because of the truck traffic.

Mr. Speaker, members might say and other Nova Scotians might say, well, why don't these trucks take another route? The main reason that they don't is that right after they go through this intersection and make a right into this jam-packed, horrendous intersection, they

[Page 7153]

make a left onto Joseph Howe Drive in order to get to the Murray MacKay Bridge so that they can get to Dartmouth and get to Burnside without going through Halifax or Dartmouth. So it is a truck route and it is a truck route which has caused enormous difficulty to the people of Halifax Fairview.

You might ask why, if it is such a horrendous problem, hasn't someone responsible done something about it? Well, in fact, the Halifax Regional Municipality has done something about it, Mr. Speaker. The Halifax Regional Municipality has told the Department of Transportation and Public Works that this is its number one priority for the coming year. The Halifax Regional Municipality did all its homework. The Halifax Regional Municipality submitted not one, not two, but three possible designs for alternative ramps off the Bicentennial Highway to get that traffic out of these congested intersections, to move that traffic along, and to protect the neighbours of the residential area.

Mr. Speaker, the Department of Transportation and Public Works rejected the first plan. I am not an engineer so there may have been good reasons for it. The Department of Transportation and Public Works rejected the second plan and, again, I say nothing about that. There may well have been and, indeed, there were other options. The Halifax Regional Municipality submitted another one and this time the Department of Transportation and Public Works said, well, you know, maybe it can be done if it is tinkered with a little bit. So here we have a plan. HRM has said it is its number one priority for cost-shared programs with the provincial government and it has said that it will fund one-quarter of the project if the Department of Transportation and Public Works funds the other three-quarters, which I believe is the standard split.

Mr. Speaker, the Department of Transportation and Public Works made some noises and talked around it and all of a sudden nothing. The Halifax Regional Municipality, today - yesterday, to be exactly precise - said that if the Department of Transportation and Public Works will not move ahead with this desperately needed project, they have money problems of their own and they are going to have to take that money that they have committed to this off-ramp project which would make life so much more livable for so many people in the Halifax Fairview constituency. The Halifax Regional Municipality has said that we desperately need that money for other things and we need to know what is happening, so in the meantime they are holding onto this money. They are about to let this money go and they have been left in the twilight zone.

Believe me, it wasn't just when the member for Timberlea-Prospect came along that I discovered the importance of roads and highways. The situation is Fairview for the past three years, while I have served the people of Fairview, has been utterly and completely horrendous. The Halifax Regional Municipality knows it; the residents of Halifax Fairview know it; the people who come in and out of the City of Halifax and have to get to the peninsula through that intersection know it; everybody who has been there knows it;

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everybody who has been involved with it knows it. There is nobody aware of this that doesn't know its desperate urgency.

I would plead with the Department of Transportation and I would plead with the minister to let the Halifax Regional Municipality know that it is on for this project, that the money is there for this year and that the residents of a whole section of the City of Halifax - and, indeed, well into the downtown where the traffic flows - would have a great weight off their minds, would be relieved of at least one civic difficulty which can and should be fixed. As I said when I began, there are lots and lots of problems in this world that a government cannot fix, but if there was ever a problem that could be fixed and would benefit a huge number of people, I cannot imagine one more ripe for fixing than this terrible congestion, this terrible frustration, noise, litter, anger, lateness and all of the things that have accumulated for the people who must pass through this tiny little funnel from a major highway to get into the City of Halifax.

Again, I would urge the Department of Transportation to look swiftly at this, to clarify its commitment to this project, and to let the Halifax Regional Municipality know that it is with them and that its share of the funding is there, so that the residents of Halifax Fairview, travellers to the city, and the rest of Halifax will have their minds eased on this most frustrating problem. Thank you. (Applause)

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Lunenburg.

MR. MICHAEL BAKER: Mr. Speaker, I rise today to speak on three particular issues. The first of those issues is the absolute cynicism with which the Health Investment Fund has been created. The Health Investment Fund is, in my view, a ploy designed to deceive Nova Scotians into forgetting what has happened since 1993 when we had the election. In 1993, when this government was elected, when John Savage became Premier of Nova Scotia, the Government of Nova Scotia slashed the health care system in this province; it took the heart out of that system and completely destroyed it.

I remember Ron Stewart standing and telling the people of Nova Scotia that he was reforming health care. There was no reform to health care. What there was was absolute devastation in communities all across Nova Scotia. Hospitals were closed, beds were cut, the health care system was absolutely devastated. Nurses were laid off. The Province of Nova Scotia made it its policy to have women and men in nursing leave that profession and leave Nova Scotia in many cases.

[11:15 a.m.]

Today, because the prospect of an election looms either this year or the following year, the government found religion. What they found was the fact that they had destroyed the system over six years, they destroyed a system and now, all of a sudden, we have the Health

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Investment Fund. No plan, but we have it because all of a sudden, they discovered what Nova Scotians knew for a long time, which was that the main priority of Nova Scotians is having a health care system that works. A health care system that makes sure when people go to emergency departments, whether they are in Bridgewater or Lunenburg or Halifax or Sydney, that they get seen by a doctor. That is what we don't have in this province today.

What we don't have in this province today is an adequate number of beds so that people with serious illnesses get treated in a timely fashion. We don't have that today. Why don't we have it today? We don't have it today because of Liberal health care cuts. It is not complicated. You don't need a Health Investment Fund or a magician to figure out why the problem exists. It exists today because the Government of Nova Scotia made it its policy to do those things. It made it its policy to penalize physicians who chose to stay in Nova Scotia and discouraged them.

When they had a crisis on their hands, a crisis of their own doing, all of a sudden, they discover the problem. The government lurches from one crisis to another crisis, all of their own doing. The people who suffer are the people of Nova Scotia, and they are suffering because the government of the day has failed to take care of their needs. In my constituency of Lunenburg, we had beds slashed at the Fisherman's Memorial Hospital. We had services taken out of the Fisherman's Memorial Hospital. Our hospital is largely vacant as a result of Liberal health care reform.

There is no secret to that. The problem existed and started only when this government was elected in 1993. You don't have to look for any more complicated cause. To suggest that because they can't manage the system that health care costs are exploding, that just doesn't cut it. The costs are exploding because they just can't manage the system. The people in my constituency are suffering. They are suffering from a terrible lack of management skill.

Unfortunately, $250 million or $500 million or $1 billion won't solve a problem of management. There is no limit to the problem when you cannot manage the money. There may need to be more money put into health care, that is quite possible, but the problem is, what is going to solve the problem? The Minister of Health stands in this House every day and when something good happens, he claims utter credit for it, and when it goes bad, it is the regional health boards, it is all their fault, they can't do anything. They have absolutely taken no responsibility for what they have done wrong and have been very good at taking responsibility for the very few things that have gone right.

To switch gears for a second, the second issue which is of critical interest to my constituents is the issue of transportation. The transportation network in this province is going to ruin. We have roads that six years ago were passable that are no longer passable. We have potholes and cracks, and their own officials in the Department of Transportation and Public Works will tell you, we cannot manage the province's road network on the money we are given. We cannot do it. On top of that, there is political favouritism and patronage in the

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allocation of pavement. You can't get hot asphalt in this province if you live in the wrong riding. The solution to the problem is to make sure that after the next election that that gang is not in government, because that is the solution to the paving problem in Nova Scotia.

Mr. Speaker, what we have to do is, we have to manage our transportation network so that people who live in rural Nova Scotia or in metro, as the honourable member for Halifax Fairview just referred to, have a decent road network in this province, everyone, no matter whether you live in Barss Corner or in Fairview or in Sydney or in Yarmouth has a right to a decent transportation network. Some people who are lucky enough to live on good roads say, oh it is a parochial issue. I can tell you it is not a parochial issue if it affects your ability to earn a livelihood, if it affects your ability to get your children to school, if it affects the ability to get an oil truck in to put oil in your oil tank in the middle of the winter time, it is not a parochial issue, an ambulance that can't get in to see a person who is ill, those are not minor issues. We have road signs all across this province that are in the gutters. The Department of Transportation doesn't even put the road signs up anymore. The people of Nova Scotia have seen what Liberal management of the province's economy has wrought and it is not very pretty.

Finally, the last issue is economic development. This government has been utterly and totally inept at making sure that prosperity is felt throughout Nova Scotia. This government has absolutely no vision for how to help the people in Lunenburg, Yarmouth, or Springhill to have a better life, no vision whatsoever. In fact, the Government of Nova Scotia for no reason forgave a $25 million loan for Michelin that Michelin wanted to repay. It is utterly astounding; $25 million that could have been paid back to the people of Nova Scotia. Michelin is a wonderful asset to the province and they were prepared to repay the loan. The choice was not between jobs at Michelin, the choice was between getting $25 million back or not getting $25 million back, that is the choice. That gang would let you believe and let the people of Nova Scotia believe that the choice was between jobs at Michelin and repaying a $25 million loan. There was the potential to have both and this is the problem. If you can't manage the system you cannot accomplish the public objectives.

The situation is that the people of my riding are expecting not miracles from government, there will not be any miracles and governments must live within their means, absolutely, unequivocally and people expect that. People expect that government will live within its means and that they will manage the system. This government has added hundreds of millions and billions of dollars to the province's debt, while ostensibly balancing budgets.

The last thing I wanted to speak to is the fact that the Liberal Government has been very good at telling Nova Scotians, when we were elected things were in such a terrible state that the reason we have these hundreds of millions of dollars of additional deficit is because it was the Tories' fault. The day you got elected it became your responsibility. It was not the responsibility of anybody else, it became your responsibility. Truman said it, the buck stops here, the buck stops there. Thank you, Mr. Speaker. (Applause)

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MR. SPEAKER: The motion is carried.

[11:24 a.m. The House resolved itself into a CWH on Supply with Deputy Speaker Mr. Donald Chard in the Chair.]

[3:24 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:

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

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. MANNING MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, would you please revert to the order of business, Presenting Reports of Committees.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Minister of Justice.

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

Bill No. 107 - Tobacco Access Act.

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

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

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The honourable Government House Leader.

HON. MANNING MACDONALD: Mr. Speaker, that completes the government's business for today. The House will be sitting Monday between the hours of 3:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m., and following the daily routine and the debate on Supply, we will be calling Bill No. 102 for third reading and any other business that we have time for, on third reading.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is to adjourn. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

[The House rose at 3:25 p.m.]