The Nova Scotia Legislature

The House resumed on:
September 21, 2017.

Hansard -- Mon., May 5, 1997

Fifth Session

MONDAY, MAY 5, 1997

TABLE OF CONTENTS PAGE
PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS:
Transport. - Aylesford: Victoria Road - Repair, Mr. G. Moody 1363
Health - Children's Dental Program: Cuts - Oppose, Dr. J. Hamm 1364
Transport. - Antigonish Co.: Route 337 North - Pave, Mr. R. Russell 1364
NOTICES OF MOTION:
Res. 332, Nat. Res. - Sable Gas: Availability (N.S.) - Info. Table,
Dr. J. Hamm 1365
Res. 333, CBC & Peter Gzowski - Flood Relief (Manitoba): Devotion -
Thank, Mr. R. Chisholm 1365
Vote - Affirmative 1366
Res. 334, Educ. - Hammonds Plains School: Mural Completion -
Participants Congrats., Mr. B. Holland 1366
Vote - Affirmative 1367
Res. 335, Battle of the Atlantic: Sailors' Sacrifice - Remember,
Mr. R. Russell 1367
Vote - Affirmative 1367
Res. 336, Educ. - Beechville-Lakeside-Timberlea School:
Musical "Oliver" - Congrats., Mr. B. Holland 1367
Vote - Affirmative 1368
Res. 337, Econ. Dev. & Tourism - Appointments: Unadvertised -
Cease, Mr. B. Taylor 1368
Res. 338, Agric. - Pineview Farm (Lun. Co.): Expansion - Congrats.,
Mrs. L. O'Connor 1369
Vote - Affirmative 1369
Res. 339, Boating Accident (Big Indian Lake, Tantallon) -
Condolences-Convey/Safety Practise, Mr. D. McInnes 1369
Vote - Affirmative 1370
Res. 340, Health: Hearing & Speech Month (May 1997) - Recognize,
Hon. B. Boudreau 1370
Vote - Affirmative 1371
Res. 341, Nat. Res.: Min. - Remove (Post 12/07/97), Mr. G. Moody 1371
Vote - Affirmative 1371
Res. 342, Gov't. (N.S.) - Sessional Preview (Premier): Accuracy -
Commend, Mr. R. Russell 1372
Res. 343, Fin.: HST - Reject, Mr. R. Chisholm 1372
Res. 344, Culture - HMCS/CFB Cornwallis Military Museum
(Mr. Ronald Elliot): Opening - Congrats., Mr. G. Archibald 1373
Vote - Affirmative 1374
Res. 345, Health - Mental Health Week (04/05/97-11/05/97):
Promotion - Success, Mr. B. Taylor 1374
Res. 346, Econ. Dev. & Tourism - Marketing (Tourism):
TIANS Concerns - Address, Mr. D. McInnes 1374
HOUSE RESOLVED INTO CWH ON SUPPLY AT 2:26 P.M. 1375
HOUSE RECONVENED AT 6:26 P.M. 1375
HOUSE RESOLVED INTO CWH ON BILLS AT 6:27 P.M. 1376
HOUSE RECONVENED AT 9:45 P.M. 1376
CWH REPORTS 1376
INTRODUCTION OF BILLS:
No. 17, Municipal Elections Act 1376
PUBLIC BILLS FOR SECOND READING:
No. 17, Municpal Elections Act 1377
Mr. R. White 1377
Mr. R. Russell 1377
Mr. J. Holm 1377
Mr. R. White 1378
Vote - Affirmative 1379
NOTICES OF MOTION:
Res. 347, Sports - Curling: Meredith Doyle's Team -
Team of the Year Award Congrats., Hon. E. Norrie 1379
Vote - Affirmative 1380
ADJOURNMENT, House rose to meet again on Tue., May 6th at 12:00 p.m. 1380

[Page 1363]

HALIFAX, MONDAY, MAY 5, 1997

Fifty-sixth General Assembly

Fifth Session

2:00 P.M.

SPEAKER

Hon. Wayne Gaudet

DEPUTY SPEAKER

Mrs. Francene Cosman

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

PRESENTING AND READING PETITIONS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Kings West.

MR. GEORGE MOODY: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition to fix up Victoria Road which is south of Aylesford. This petition was signed by over 500 residents.

AN HON. MEMBER: How many?

MR. MOODY: Over 500 residents that visit Farmers Family Diner which is owned by Brian Hebb and his family who started up a new business. They feel that the condition of this road has taken away from their business as well as the Oaklawn Zoo which is in the same area.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

1363

[Page 1364]

The honourable Leader of the Opposition.

DR. JOHN HAMM: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition containing the names of 97 Nova Scotians who are opposed to the Liberal Government's recent cuts to the Children's Dental Program. The petition reads, "We, the undersigned oppose the recent cuts to the Nova Scotia Children's Dental Program. The two-tier system is a personal affront, and changes within the program are not based on sound clinical experience. We the voters and taxpayers of this province insist that the government not make any more cuts to this extremely cost efficient program.".

This brings the total number of Nova Scotians who have signed petitions denouncing the Liberal Government's cuts to the Children's Dental Care Program to 12,415. Nova Scotians are using the petition to support the principle that children's dental care is essential to proper health care in adulthood. Nova Scotians believe the government must refocus its spending priorities to include proper children's dental care. I, Mr. Speaker, have added my name to the petition.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

The honourable member for Hants West.

MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I beg leave to table a petition signed by several hundred residents of Antigonish County. It reads, "We the undersigned residents of Antigonish County route 337 north, known as the Mini Trail tourist attraction, want to make a petition to the Dept. of Transportation and the Minister of Transportation. Our concern is over the road conditions in certain sections of our road. Many sections are in poor disrepair and several are nearly impassable at any speed over 20-30 km/hr. One key area of concern is the stretch directly in front of St. Columba Church, Lakevale. Not only is the pavement poor but guard railing has disappeared over the embankment and the shoulder of the road is also disintegrating. Our area is noted for its beautiful scenery and depends in many ways on tourism for our support as a viable community. Some things that would be directly affected would be our Craft Shops, . . . We feel that in order to encourage tourists and for that matter friends, to visit our community we insist that our road be evaluated and paved. If not in full, in sections, before the height of the tourist season is upon us.". Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: The petition is tabled.

PRESENTING REPORTS OF COMMITTEES

TABLING REPORTS, REGULATIONS AND OTHER PAPERS

STATEMENTS BY MINISTERS

[Page 1365]

GOVERNMENT NOTICES OF MOTION

INTRODUCTION OF BILLS

NOTICES OF MOTION

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Leader of the Opposition.

RESOLUTION NO. 332

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 Minister of Natural Resources has not produced any evidence to support her claims of Sable offshore natural gas benefits to Nova Scotians; and

Whereas there have been so many concerns regarding the Liberal Government's quiet, uninvolved spectator-like approach to the Sable Offshore Energy Project that even Liberal leadership candidate Russell MacLellan has reservations about the deal;

Therefore be it resolved that the Minister of Natural Resources table all relevant information to support her assurances of the availability of natural gas to Nova Scotians and demonstrate that she has not been a part of a great gas giveaway.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable Leader of the New Democratic Party.

RESOLUTION NO. 333

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 CBC did what it does best on Friday, May 2th, bringing Canadians from coast to coast and around the world together in the Red River Rally; and

Whereas the Red River Rally has raised well over $800,000 so far to assist with flood relief for Manitoba; and

Whereas Peter Gzowski, in the final weeks of his career, has succeeded in showing Canadians the power of public broadcasting;

[Page 1366]

Therefore be it resolved that this House thank Peter Gzowski and CBC Radio for their devotion to Manitobans, all Canadians and the ties that bind us.

Mr. Speaker, I seek waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed that notice be waived?

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. 334

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

Whereas 30 Grade 4 to Grade 6 students from Hammonds Plains Consolidated School recently completed a mural of a beautiful Nova Scotia seascape on the wall of one of the new wings in their school; and

Whereas the students were voluntarily assisted in their project by world-renowned artist, Susan Tooke; and

Whereas, Barb Campbell, a volunteer mother at the school, who runs an art club for the students, initiated the project because, as she stated, 'We wanted to do something that would make the kids feel ownership";

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House extend their congratulations to the 30 students who worked on the mural and extend thanks to Ms. Tooke and Ms. Campbell for their voluntarism in seeing the project through to completion.

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

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

[Page 1367]

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Hants West.

RESOLUTION NO. 335

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

Whereas Sunday, May 4, 1997, was Battle of the Atlantic Sunday, a day commemorating the end of one of the longest sea battles in history from September 1939 until May 1945; and

Whereas 4,000 Canadians lost their lives in the defence of freedom; and

Whereas 24-some Canadian warships and 70 Canadian merchant ships were lost in battle along with their brave crews, many having left Halifax, their last port of call;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House stand for one minute of silence in memory of the 4,000 Canadian sailors who gave their lives to ensure peace and freedom for all people of this great nation.

Mr. Speaker, I request for waiver of notice and one minute of silence.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

[One minute of silence was observed.]

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

RESOLUTION NO. 336

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

Whereas the Beechville-Lakeside-Timberlea School will be performing the musical, Oliver, tonight and tomorrow night at the school gymnasium; and

[Page 1368]

Whereas the cast of this musical is made up of both teachers and students from Grade Primary to Grade 9; and

Whereas the directors of the musical are Mr. Terry Sullivan, school principal; and Ms. Martha King, music teacher;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House extend their congratulations and best wishes to the staff and students of Beechville-Lakeside-Timberlea School on this unique cooperative venture among students, teachers, parents, and members of the community at large.

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

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley.

RESOLUTION NO. 337

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

Whereas the member for Colchester North aptly described the House Committee on Human Resources as a joke; and

Whereas the Liberal comedy continues with the appointment of Bonita Kirby as an interim chair of the Nova Scotia Film Development Corporation without informing the Human Resources Committee; and

Whereas this most recent appointment comes on the heels of her predecessor, well-known Liberal balladeer Kenzie MacNeil, being given an untendered, unadvertised contract position with the Department of Economic Development and Tourism;

Therefore be it resolved that the Liberal Government start closing the loopholes within the hiring process for appointing well-connected Grits undermining other government appointments.

[Page 1369]

[2:15 p.m.]

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Lunenburg.

RESOLUTION NO. 338

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

Whereas Mary and Chris Brown in partnership with their son Chris Jr. and his wife, Karen, own Pine View Farm, Lunenburg County; and

Whereas the Pine View Farm is the only greenhouse grower in this region exporting bedding plants, called plugs, throughout Atlantic Canada, across the country and into parts of the United States; and

Whereas with government assistance from the Nova Scotia Agri-Focus 2000 Program, the Brown family recently opened a new 20,000 square foot greenhouse facility that will produce and export 6.25 million plants this spring;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House extend congratulations to Mary and Chris Sr. Brown and Karen and Chris Jr. Brown for the recent expansion of their growing business and recognize the Nova Scotia Agri-Focus 2000 Program for its valuable contribution to those people dedicated to this province's agricultural industry.

Mr. Speaker, I ask for waiver.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed that the notice be waived?

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. 339

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

[Page 1370]

Whereas this weekend, two young Nova Scotians lost their lives from a boating accident at Big Indian Lake, near Tantallon; and

Whereas two young Nova Scotians remain missing; and

Whereas more Nova Scotians will be using boats this spring and summer for both recreational and commercial purposes;

Therefore be it resolved that this House convey our condolences to the families of the deceased, express hope for the families of those who remain missing and urge Nova Scotians to practice safe boating.

Mr. Speaker, I ask for waiver.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Minister of Health.

RESOLUTION NO. 340

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

Whereas the Elks and Royal Purple of Canada have Lodges here in Nova Scotia to help establish a national program to bring about the earliest possible identification of hearing impaired children by continuing to search out ways to assist in the detection, development and rehabilitation of these children; and

Whereas the Elks Lodges and Royal Purple Lodges in Nova Scotia had their annual conference this past weekend in New Glasgow; and

Whereas the Elks and Royal Purple of Canada endorsed May as Hearing and Speech Month to generate awareness of the need to coordinate and update all programs in Canada to search, find and treat this hidden handicap in Canadian children;

Therefore be it resolved that this House recognize May as Hearing and Speech Month.

[Page 1371]

Mr. Speaker, I ask for waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Kings West.

RESOLUTION NO. 341

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

Whereas May 4th to May 11th is National Mental Health Week across Canada; and

Whereas the Canadian Mental Health Association has initiated several new programs including the Open Mind Workplace Program which helps employers and employees understand the effects of stress, anxiety and depression on productivity and workplace well-being; and

Whereas the Nova Scotia Division of the Canadian Mental Health Association has undertaken a youth program in a metro junior high school to assist junior high students in learning about the various levels of stress;

Therefore be it resolved that members of this Legislature wish the Nova Scotia Division of the Canadian Mental Health Association the very best in their endeavours to promote the mental health well-being of all Nova Scotians.

Mr. Speaker, I would ask for waiver.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed that the notice be waived?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable member for Hants West.

[Page 1372]

RESOLUTION NO. 342

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

Whereas the Premier began this session of the House by describing it as steady as she goes; and

Whereas the Liberal's so-called two balanced budgets were exposed to be dripping in red ink; and

Whereas the BST started to rip more money from the pockets of Nova Scotians, while many of the government's own ads and news releases which promoted BST savings were exposed as misleading;

Therefore be it resolved that the Premier be commended for his accurate preview of this steady as she goes session - steady as she goes in more Liberal tax hikes and steady as she goes in more broken Liberal promises.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

MR. BRUCE HOLLAND: On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. I would ask that you take that resolution under advisement. I believe it is out of order. It misleads the House in suggesting that the books aren't balanced when they are. Thank you.

MR. RONALD RUSSELL: On the point of order, Mr. Speaker. I would just simply refer you to the Auditor General's Report of just one week ago when he, obviously, pointed out that the books were not balanced. There was a $48 million deficit. That is not even close.

MR. HOLLAND: On the point of order, Mr. Speaker. That is not at all what the Auditor General said. These fine gentlemen have been trying to mislead the public into believing that for the last few weeks and it is absolutely not true and I would request that my consideration be given.

MR. SPEAKER: Consideration will be given. That notice will be taken under consideration.

The honourable Leader of the New Democratic Party.

RESOLUTION NO. 343

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

[Page 1373]

Whereas the Department of Business and Consumer Services is congratulating itself for sending out the first 1,500 cheques under its direct assistance program; and

Whereas 1,500 represents only about 2 per cent of those Nova Scotians eligible for the program, which is designed to offset the regressive and unfair impact of the BST on low income taxpayers; and

Whereas 100 per cent of low income taxpayers are already paying higher taxes on home heat, gasoline, electricity, clothing and footwear as a result of the BST;

Therefore be it resolved that this House rejects the Liberal BST which takes money immediately from low income Nova Scotians with one hand and only very slowly gives back some of it with the other.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Kings North.

RESOLUTION NO. 344

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

Whereas HMCS/CFB Cornwallis and its staff provided sterling service for this great nation throughout the Second World War and on into the post cold war era, prior to its unfortunate closure by this Liberal Government; and

Whereas CFB Cornwallis was an important part of Canada and Nova Scotia's treasured military heritage; and

Whereas Mr. Ronald Elliott and his colleagues have developed a new military museum at Cornwallis in the old Protestant Chapel to ensure that Canada and Nova Scotia's rich and proud military history is never forgotten;

Therefore be it resolved that all members of this House join me in extending congratulations to Mr. Ronald Elliott and his colleagues on the opening of the HMCS/CFB Cornwallis Military Museum.

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

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed that notice be waived?

It is agreed.

[Page 1374]

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. 345

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

Whereas the Minister of Natural Resources refuses to table written guarantees of preferential natural gas access and pricing for Nova Scotians; and

Whereas the Minister of Natural Resources removed the Jim Campbells Barren from the Province of Nova Scotia's protected area list, opening this pristine site to ruthless exploitation and degradation; and

Whereas the ineptitude of the Minister of Natural Resources has resulted in the World Wildlife Federation downgrading Nova Scotia's standing to C-minus;

Therefore be it resolved that this House urge Liberal leadership candidates to do the honourable thing and remove the current minister from the Department of Natural Resources before she does any more damage to the natural resources industry in this province.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

The honourable member for Pictou West.

RESOLUTION NO. 346

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

Whereas the managing director of the Tourism Industry Association of Nova Scotia expressed concerns last week about Canada's ocean playground no longer being the tourist attraction it used to be; and

Whereas Judith Cabrita also said Nova Scotia needs to do a better job of marketing its tremendous natural advantages to the right audience; and

[Page 1375]

Whereas the Air Access Committee of the Hotel Association of Nova Scotia has identified out-of-province visitors by air will increase from 21 per cent to 31 per cent by the year 2000;

Therefore be it resolved that the Nova Scotia Department of Economic Development and Tourism address these important concerns to ensure a future of prosperity in Nova Scotia's tourism industry.

MR. SPEAKER: The notice is tabled.

ORDERS OF THE DAY

GOVERNMENT BUSINESS

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.

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 motion is carried.

[2:26 p.m. The House resolved itself into a CWH on Supply with Acting Chairman Dennis Richards in the Chair.]

[6:26 p.m. CWH on Supply rose and the House reconvened. Mr. Speaker, Hon. Wayne Gaudet, 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 and begs leave to sit again.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

[Page 1376]

It is agreed.

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 Bills.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is carried.

[6:27 p.m. The House resolved itself into a CWH on Bills with Acting Deputy Speaker Mr. Robert Carruthers in the Chair.]

[9:45 p.m. CWH on Bills rose and the House reconvened with Acting Deputy Speaker Mr. Dennis Richards in the Chair.]

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

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

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed?

It is agreed.

The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.

MR. RAYMOND WHITE: Mr. Speaker, would you please revert to the order of business, Introduction of Bills.

INTRODUCTION OF BILLS

Bill No. 17 - Entitled An Act to Amend Chapter 300 of the Revised Statutes of 1989. The Municipal Elections Act. (Mr. Raymond White)

MR. SPEAKER: Ordered that this bill be read a second time on a future day.

The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.

MR. RAYMOND WHITE: Mr. Speaker, with the consensus of the House, we could move to second reading. So, I would ask if you would call to see if there is consensus?

[Page 1377]

MR. SPEAKER: Do we have agreement that this bill be read a second time?

It is agreed.

PUBLIC BILLS FOR SECOND READING

[Bill No. 17 - Municipal Elections Act.]

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.

MR. RAYMOND WHITE: Mr. Speaker, I move second reading of Bill No. 17.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable member for Hants West.

MR. RONALD RUSSELL: Mr. Speaker, I don't wish to delay the House but, however, I feel it is incumbent upon the members of this House to be aware that the purpose of this bill, as I understand it, and I haven't actually read the bill, is to permit municipal councils in their elections coming up in the fall to utilize the enumerated lists that are presently being prepared for the federal election. I think that is a good move.

However, Mr. Speaker, I do believe that it should be brought to the attention of this House that the enumeration for the federal election is probably the worst enumeration we have ever had in this province. I know that there are several hundred in my constituency, for instance, who were not enumerated including, by the way, the street on which I live was not enumerated, so the whole street has not been enumerated, and there have been a number of other cases within the riding that I represent. Also, as I understand it, right across this province there are large blocks of residents who have not been enumerated.

So, Mr. Speaker, I just bring that to your attention and hope that the enumerated lists that are prepared finally, and turned over to municipalities shall be more accurate than the ones that we have at the present moment.

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

MR. JOHN HOLM: Mr. Speaker, I indicate certainly that we will be supporting this. I also want to thank the president of the Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities for contacting us, providing us the letter and advising us what their intentions were. Through that, it is nice to see that when there is consultation, in advance, that there is the possibility to get unanimous consent so that we can move forward with something like this. I certainly want to say that I very much appreciate Warden Stoddart's consultation and support in that matter.

[Page 1378]

Secondly, Mr. Speaker, I do, also, understand the purpose of the legislation is to make it permissive. I know that I have also encountered, come across the kinds of difficulties with the enumeration lists that were prepared by the federal government for this upcoming election. I know of whole streets being put in polls that are completely distant from the one that they are supposedly included in. I mean they have a street in one area and they have them included with a poll that is located a number of polls away. There are obviously a lot of glitches and some of those glitches are to be expected in the new process. Hopefully, during the revision process that is underway, those kind of difficulties will be corrected. The main purpose behind this, and as I say it is permissive, the municipalities will not have to use this legislation. If they want, they can still do their own independent enumeration if they do not think that the federal process will work. So, the option is still there for them to decide.

The other thing is, we are all talking about money and we all know that many costs have been downloaded to the property taxpayers, to the municipalities by the provincial government. Millions of dollars over the last number of years have been offloaded. This, Mr. Speaker, will save municipalities some money. I think in the Cape Breton Regional Municipality, the amount would be in the range of close to $100,000. So, if they can, by using a good federal list, save the taxpayers in that area $100,000 on doing that enumeration then I would suggest, and I think we would all agree, we would rather see that $100,000 being used for necessary services within that community, whether that be for roads, whether that be to maintain some essential infrastructure, or maybe even to be used to lever some additional dollars out of the federal government during the federal-provincial infrastructure project. You might be able to get quite a bit done.

So, Mr. Speaker, I have not had the chance to read all the details in the legislation in its legal sense. I certainly understand the principle behind the bill and I am very much supportive of the principle of the bill and particularly as it is permissive. In closing, again, I want to thank the UNSM, Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities, for their courtesy in consulting all three Parties in advance so that we would understand the rationale behind the legislation that they wanted to see brought forward. Hopefully, that kind of cooperation can be followed in other matters in this House in the future. Thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.

MR. RAYMOND WHITE: Mr. Speaker, I was pleased to table the amendment to the Municipal Elections Act. I did so at the request of the Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities who have asked our assistance in helping solve this significant administrative problem. I am pleased that all the Parties tonight have agreed to move this bill forward.

As you are aware, Elections Canada has moved to create a new permanent voters list. In the past, municipalities have had access to the federal voters list and they did so based on full enumeration. This spared the municipalities the considerable cost of staging a duplicate process. Maybe to sums things up, Mr. Speaker, there has been consultation between the

[Page 1379]

Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities, the province's municipal elections officer and various groups involved. As I already mentioned, this will be a cost-saving for the municipalities. It will be enabling legislation and will only be in effect for this year. Municipalities will have a choice of whether or not they want to take this route or the traditional route of preparing for upcoming municipal elections.

This is an excellent example, Mr. Speaker, where the governments can work together to produce an efficient and convenient service and a cost-saving to the taxpayer.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is for second reading of Bill No. 17. Would all those in favour of the motion please say Aye. Contrary minded, Nay.

The motion is carried.

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

The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.

MR. RAYMOND WHITE: Mr. Speaker, would you please revert to the order of business, Notices of Motion.

NOTICES OF MOTION

The honourable Minister of Natural Resources.

RESOLUTION NO. 347

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

Whereas the IKON Nova Scotia Amateur Sports Awards presentations were held on Saturday, May 3rd, in Halifax; and

Whereas Meredith Doyle and her Canadian women's junior championship curling team, composed of Beth Roach, Candace MacLean, and Tara Hamer, were chosen team of the year; and

Whereas Meredith was also chosen Nova Scotia's female athlete of the year;

Therefore be it resolved that the members of this House extend congratulations to Meredith and her team-mates on this exceptional achievement, along with sincere appreciation for their outstanding representation of their country and their province, while finishing third at the World Junior Curling Championships held in Japan.

[Page 1380]

Mr. Speaker, I seek waiver of notice.

MR. SPEAKER: Is it agreed that notice be waived?

It is agreed.

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

The motion is carried.

The honourable Deputy Government House Leader.

MR. RAYMOND WHITE: Mr. Speaker, following Question Period tomorrow, we have Committee of the Whole House on Supply and we will consider the estimates of Health, and in the Subcommittee on Supply the estimates of Labour. Following that will be Committee of the Whole House on Bills.

I move that the House do now rise and sit tomorrow between the hours of 12:00 noon and 8:00 p.m.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion for adjournment has been made. The House will rise to sit again tomorrow at 12:00 noon.

[The House rose at 9:56 p.m.]